Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Fort Koshkonong Review

Over at The Spoon and Blade I have up the complete review of the Fort Koshkonong Rendezvous. If you are even remotely curious, you should go check it out. Plus there is a really cute picture of Clone in his gentleman's outfit. I know, I'm biased. But everyone said he was cute over the weekend!

I've also put up the latest Mortar Maiden. Ms. June is ready for you to view. How can you go wrong with bodice's, boobs and boom?!?!

Maybe I have ADD.

I hate the first day back to work after a rendezvous. It seems to drag on forever. I ‘m tired and my muscles are sore from the packing and unpacking, but it’s a good kind of soreness. I sit at my desk trying to work, but all I can think about is the fun I had over the weekend. The activities I did and the people I talked with at the range or around the campfire. I cannot keep my head out of the clouds and focus on the tasks in front of me.
It’s funny how ‘vous time moves at least three times as fast regular time. In the amount of time I’ve spent working on reports today, it feels like it was equivalent to an entire day of re-enacting.

There wasn’t as much tension in the camp as last time. There was some still there. I’m starting to think I’m either part of the problem or at least somehow involved. Either way my original solution, of leaving the group, will still work. I spoke about it briefly with the members that where there on Friday and Saturday nights. No one was really caught off guard, so I’m going to take that as a good sign. I explained it has nothing to do with the members of the group. They are all my friends and I very much want to keep it that way. I just want to have fun, and with the tension in camp and the problems with doing the registration for the group, I’m starting not to have fun. There is also the issue with the fact that what I want to do is now differing from what the rest of the group wants to do. My personal goals for re-enacting are so different from everyone else in the groups that it is a detriment to my ability to fulfill them.

I have been courted on a couple of times to join other groups. I just don’t think I want to go that route again. If I’m going to leave a group filled with friends, I don’t think I want to join another group filled with strangers. Therefore, if I do decide to leave I will remain independent.

The other thing I discovered this weekend was that I could make a 2X4 explode by shooting it with my musket. I was trying to cut a playing card in half sideways at 15 feet. I missed and hit the 2X4 that was holding the card in place. It exploded and showered wood shards down upon the other shooters, judges and myself. The public watching thought this was great and cheered. The range master didn’t seem to be too thrilled with the fact that I destroyed his range. He did however tell me how much he loved the public’s and other re-enactors' reaction to my shot. He started calling me Beaver all weekend “because I chew wood”. He’s a good guy and ended up coming to camp a couple of times just to hang out.

Harvey and TNT showed up on Sunday. Grau decided we should take them down to the range to show them black powder fun. Grau let both of them fire his rifle. I let Harvey try a round out of my musket. Even though the blast made him take a step back, he didn’t do too badly. He hit a log in front of the deer target causing the bullet to bounce up into a killing shot. I’m hoping his arm doesn’t hurt too much, but he was rubbing it after the shot. Unfortunately, TNT just wasn’t able to fire my Brown Bess. She was only an inch taller then it was. I tried to have her shoulder it; the pull from the trigger to the butt was too long for her to be able to safely and accurately fire it. I gave each one of them a souvenir .735 cal round ball. I don’t know what made them more disturbed, the fact that they where holding my balls, or that I pulled out my ball sack to show them where they came from. Now before you go having dirty thoughts, my ball sack is a bull’s scrotum… er never mind, it’s exactly what you are thinking. Harvey was really excited when I told him he could pet my wife’s Beaver. We had just purchased a new beaver pelt for her and she was showing it to everyone. I figured it was only fair that if TNT could hold my balls that Harvey should be allowed to pet my wife’s beaver. It was nice to see them again. However, this time I don’t think TNT was trying to figure out if she could kill me. I think she was more trying to figure out how to get even with Harvey for dragging her out on a cold and rainy Sunday to watch a bunch of dirty smelly Scots shoot black powder and eat dried or pickled food. I’m thinking we may get Harvey hooked into re-enacting yet. I caught him eyeing more then one lass in a bodice with her juberlees pushed way up.

Now I have to get ready to do another re-enactment this weekend. This one is in town and shouldn’t be too far away. I’m doing this one independent of Clan Chattan, so I’ll see how it goes.

Friday, May 27, 2005

Lunch with the minions

Some of my minions decided they wanted to go to lunch with me today. They felt that we should all go to a local buffet. I don’t mind a buffet, but there are so many places I would rather eat. I wasn’t going to be picky about it, so I said it was fine. Bad things always happen to me at a buffet. At first, they wanted me to drive. They changed their minds when they saw that my truck was loaded for re-enacting. They felt traveling around town in a vehicle chuck full of explodey (It’s a word now dammit!) goodness was not the most intelligent idea. Big T volunteered to drive. Five of us crammed into her Pontiac Grand Am and off we went.

Big T is not the best driver in the world. Her car is falling apart, not from poor craftsmanship, but because she constantly runs into stationary objects. She also has this problem of driving fast and not paying attention to the road. This makes for a lot of quick stops and violent lane corrections. It’s rather scary. After almost hitting three vehicles in about 1.5 miles, we get to the restaurant, where she proceeds to crash into the parking stall. I’m not kidding; she entered the stall with enough speed she could not stop before hitting the curb. The vehicle jumped up and almost took out a small tree. It was rather mortifying experience.

Upon entering the restaurant, we discovered it is rather busy. Fortunately, the line moved rapidly. I decided to start with a salad. I proceed to the salad bar and make myself a spinach salad with eggs, onions, black olives, onions, bacon, cheese, sunflower seeds and bleu cheese dressing. For the main course, I decided to get some kielbasa and sauerkraut, green beans with onions, bacon and almonds. It was very good, but I have started eating things that bring on gastro intestinal delights. I was still hungry so I went back and picked up some baked white fish, Salisbury steak and coleslaw.

One more ingredient and I will finish the trifecta of fun. The eggs and bleu cheese from the salad, the kielbasa, sauerkraut, and the coleslaw makes up the gaseous emanations portion of the trifecta. The baked white fish will make me nauseated. I’m mildly allergic to seafood. I bet you are asking yourself, “Why did he eat it then?” I’ll tell you why, I like it! It’s not a major allergy. It just gives me some gas, stomach cramps and nausea.

Then it happened, the final ingredient arrives at the table. It was brought over by none other than my loving wife, not for me, but for herself. I’m sure you are wondering what this final ingredient is. What could turn this seemingly innocent meal into a gastro intestinal bio-chemical agent of mass destruction? Chocolate, chocolate is what did it. My wife had a piece of chocolate cake with chocolate frosting. With out thinking, I took my finger and dragged it through the frosting. I then licked the chocolate off my finger. My poor wife looked on in shock and terror as she realized what had just traversed. There are two things on the face of the planet that aggravate my ulcers more then anything else. One is tequila, the other is chocolate. Even the tiniest amounts of either substance will turn my gut into a painful roiling cauldron of acid.

Think of this as cooking. Take Kielbasa, sauerkraut, coleslaw, hard-boiled eggs and bleu cheese dressing. Mix with stabilizing agent such as red meat and spinach for fermentation. Using a cramping motion in the stomach brought on by allergy to seafood expedite fermentation process. Add vast quantities of stomach acid to dissolve the components. Wait. With in 5 minutes you will have gaseous emanations of heroic proportions.

My wife is trying to warn the other three with us about what fate is about to befall them. They are not taking her serious, but then it happened. A sound came rumbling out from my gut. A sound reminiscent of a monster from a horror film. It was decided we needed to leave. I had not made it three steps out of the door when a belch flew forth from my mouth with enough sound to echo three times off the buildings around us. My lips moved in a gesture worthy of Barney Gumble. This was the pressure release from the gas build up. It wasn’t quite done yet. The worst was about to come.

We jump into Big T’s car and she drives off like a bat out of hell. She almost hit a van that was trying to turn into the parking lot. We were weaving all over the road as she tried to get back to the office as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, all the movement only aggravated my stomach. I released a belch most foul. It was mightier then the first one in force and it had stench. A kind of stench that can only be described as compost heap with rotting flesh and moldy food. I swear my wife about passed out in the car. Eyes were watering as they tried rolling down the windows. The belch was mightier then the wind. The stench clung to the interior of the car.

Upon reaching the office, I was quickly ushered out of the vehicle. Entering the building, I started to feel the other side effects starting to build. It shall be an interesting night tonight.

Tales from the workplace.

I’m in a mood today. I almost feel sorry for some of my minions. I don’t know what is up with me, I’m excited about my re-enactment, my inventory looks good, my father is fine and I think I actually caught my wife flirting with me (I’m so dense I normally don’t notice). Yet I’m walking around here with a storm cloud hanging over me. I’m getting ready to tear into someone most heinously.

It’s casual Friday, so I don’t wear a shirt and tie today. I’m wearing jeans and a black T-shirt that has a skull and cross bones on my left chest. The back says, “The floggings will continue until morale improves.” I have on my black steal toed work boots (Sorry, no birthday picture for you Machelle, not that you really wanted to see that anyway). I put extra gel into my hair for extreme spikiness. I’m storming up and down the rows with a scowl and glare. People are backing away from me and trying not to make eye contact. This is an actual conversation that I had earlier:

Minion; “How is our inventory looking today”

Contagion, “Crappy”

Minion, “How many do we have to get out today to meet our monthly goals?”

Contagion, “as for 7:12 this morning, 538”

Minion, “wow, that’s a lot. I heard about your father. How is he?”

Contagion, “He died, thanks. Now get some work done.”

Minion stares back wide-eyed, “I’m so sorry...”

Contagion, “Why? Did you know him?)

Minion, “No, but I’m sorry for your loss.”

Contagion, “its okay, according to the will I’ll get 1.8 million dollars and his Green Bay Packer memorabilia. I think it’s a fair trade.”

Minion, “How can you be so cold? He was your father.”

Contagion, “You’re right. That was harsh of me. I’m going to go call him and tell him I’m sorry for saying such mean things about him.”

Minion, “You should… Hey! I thought you said he died! You shouldn’t joke about that. You had me going; my heart sank when you said he died. You are so dark! How could you joke around like that?”

Contagion, “Because I’m a cold heartless bastard, and it’s funny. Now get back to work, we have 5 items to get out to meet our goals.”
Minion, “I thought you said we needed to get out 538. You having fun with me, aren’t you?”

Contagion, “Are you having fun? I’m not having fun with you if you aren’t having fun, and you don’t look like you’re having fun. I know I’m enjoying this immensely. So much fun, that I’m thinking of doing this to someone else. Wait, maybe I shouldn’t. They might turn me into HR.”

Minion, “Okay, I’m confused…”

Contagion, “Doesn’t take much.”

Minion, “ha-ha. Why would someone turn you into HR?”

Contagion, “Some people are just sensitive that way. By the way, the real reason I came over was to tell you good job on getting out those 53 items yesterday. Excellent work, if you keep this up I may have to look into actually giving you some kind of recognition.”

Minion’s face beams as her personal god shines down praise and glory upon her, “Thanks, I think I can do better today.”

Contagion, “You’d better or I’ll send my father’s ghost to haunt you.”

Minion, “You have some major issues”

Contagion, “I know, they’re called people.”

We both laugh. That was three hours ago. I haven’t smiled since. I need to go toy with another minion now.

It's back on!

I have yet another reason to be thankful for my freakish genetic metabolism. The theory that there is reptilian blood flowing through our veins is once again circulating through the medical profession.

My father went in for his surgery yesterday, he's fine, all is well with the world. There was a small vein that is closing off that is causing the problems, it is doing no real damage and it will NOT damage the heart in any way. This however is normal, what is abnormal is the rest of my father's arteries. He had a quadruple bypass 3 years ago and some stints put in 5 years ago. The artery that was cause of the bypass is now a healthy viable artery. The problem has cleaned itself out. My father's cardiologist states that his artery is a model of what it should look like for someone half his age. But wait, that's not all! Every single one of the stints that where put in look like they where just graphed into place last week. There is no scar tissue build up what so ever.

Due to lack of an serious injury he was released from the hospital last night. He is going to work today. That's right, he is going to work. We would like him to at least take the day off, but the cardiologist says that since he is a consultant and sits at a desk, it wont hurt him to work. My father took that as, "Great, I can work AND relax". My father, being himself, has told me on no uncertain terms that I am to go to my re-enactment this weekend. My father is one of those types that hate to ruin others plans.

Therefore, after work tonight I am heading off to Fort Atkinson, WI to throw lead and get wet in the storms!

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Adventure, excitment.. I crave those things.

You were destined to have a Red Lightsaber.

Red is the color of fire and blood, so it is
associated with energy, war, danger, strength,
power, and determination as well as passion and
desire. You have seen the Strength and Power of
the Dark Side of the Force and have you thirst
for more of it.

What Colored Lightsaber Would You Have?
brought to you by Quizilla

What's funny is that I was lightsaber fighting with Boopie in the back yard the other night, I demanded the red lightsaber and renamed myself Darth Shameus.

Stolen directly from Caltechgirl.

Holding on

My father had a heart attack yesterday afternoon. He has been hospitalized since. Today they are going to do surgery on him. This is his third heart attack in 5 years. He's had stints and a bypass done already. They think his problem right now is that scar tissue built up around one of the stints effectively clogging the artery. He is doing fine, I spoke with him this morning already. They don't know when the surgery is going to be, they have to get it scheduled in.

My sister is driving in from out of town, my mother is a wreck. My wife is staying home to take care of the boys since my mother is our day care provider (She runs one out of her home). Me? I'm going to work. I have a lot of stuff that needs to be done, plus I'm not a hospital person. I am not going to wait around a place that is so depressing. The only joy I ever had from a hospital was when Clone was born, the rest has been all unpleasant.

So I will go to work today. I will stick by the phone to get any news as it comes. My father thinks I'm the only one being sensible at this point. Then again my father and I have the same thought process on a lot of things.

As for my plans this weekend. It looks like I will be canceling. This will be the first re-enactment I will have missed in 7 seasons. I'm not happy about it, since I really want to go. But I have duties and obligations to my family that come first. Plus it gives Grau a chance to call me a Fair Weather Mountain Man. Especially since the weather this weekend is supposed to be pretty good.

UPDATE: My father is supposed to go in for surgery sometime after 1:00 PM today.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Hellish Trips for your Entertainment

I don't know if I will be able to take another trip into harms way this week for all of your entertainment, but I am working on it. If anyone has any idea's as to places you would like me to visit and review, please leave it in the comments.

I retain the right to have final decision on my destination and time frame to be spent there. Not all suggestions will be used. Especially if the suggestion is something terribly wacky, illegal and/or could cause me bodily harm. Such as sending me to a Wymynist lesbian rally for PETA dressed up as Bucky the chauvinist bull to try to get laid. It's just not happening.

Suffering to persevere

I’m a glutton for punishment. I finally got around to starting work on my MuNu site yesterday. I took a class in College that briefly went over HTML and website design. That was over 10 years ago and I haven’t touched a book or taken another class on it since. When I started this blog, I played around with the templates and just kept tinkering until things looked the way I wanted them. I taught myself as I went.

I’m one of those persons that want to do things for themselves. I want to learn how it works so I can do it on my own. With my blog, I want complete control of the design and lay out. I am stubbornly trudging along working on my site trying to make it exactly what I want. I know I could ask for help from many people, but it is a point of pride that I am doing it myself. I’m already noticing some of the changes I made yesterday look EXTREMELY different on IE then they do on Firefox. I will have to fix that the next time I get a chance to sit down and work on it.

I’ve gone over to munuviana to look at the helpful hints section. Sometimes they are helpful, and sometimes they are just more confusing. Especially if you are looking on how to do, one specific issue and you don’t know where to find that information. Yet, I am still refusing to ask for help. I know that if I get someone more experienced to work on it, it will look better. That however relinquishes my satisfaction at what I am doing.

Now before someone goes off and flames me in the comments, I’m not saying there is anything wrong with people doing that. It is just not something I want to do. Some people aren’t as controlling as I am, or don’t want to take the time to do it themselves. I may even have to bite the bullet on two issues I’m having and ask for help. I’m going to give myself another two weeks of tinkering before I do that.
In the meantime, I am going to keep posting over here, but once I get the new site up I’m going to have a grand ol’ grill-out party to celebrate. Just bear with me for a while and things will finally move along. Until then, just think of all the blog fodder this should make

Was it worth it?

I didn’t mean to do it. It just happened. I was weak, the opportunity came along and I did something I never thought I would do. I cheated on my wife.

At least that is what she told me this morning, that I had cheated on her. Apparently, she had a really vivid dream involving my sexual adventures with another woman. At this point, I want to state for the records that I have never and will never cheat on my wife. For those of you that read the opening of this post and believed it, shame on you. I feel guilty even looking at another woman (not in a strip club). I mean I still look at a pretty woman walking down the street, but I feel guilty about it.

What I don’t get is that it was a dream; she knows and admits it was a dream, yet she was mad at ME for it! I’m sorry, but if I had that kind of control over other people’s dreams, I’d use it to my own evil devices. I would not use it to anger my wife! Is it my fault she had some kind if insecurities and dreamt about it? Should I be held responsible for actions that her subconscious dreamt up? I don’t think so, but then again *I* am the bad guy here.

I will say that my wife’s anger quickly diminished as the morning went on. It probably would have faded away much faster if I hadn’t been a little, okay very, insensitive about it. I had to ask, “Who did I cheat with?” *I* had to know whom my wife thought I was sticking it to in her mind. She told me she didn’t know who it was; she had never seen her before. I then asked, “Was she pretty?” Big mistake! My wife shot back with, “does it matter?!?!” The tone in which she answered the questions leads me to believe she knew who the woman is, and didn’t want to tell me. It might even be someone I know. At least she confirmed it was NOT a guy! Thank god, I think that would have me skeeved out for the rest of the week.

I just want to know which woman my wife thinks is desperate enough to have an affair with me of all people. I’m also curious as to what type of woman my wife thinks I find attractive. I have slightly unusual tastes and have some pretty meticulous standards. Most of the women other guys think of as “hot”, I think are okay. They’re pretty, just not my type.

I’m debating on whether or not I should buy my wife some jewelry now. That’s how I earn brownie points and get out of trouble. I don’t feel I did anything wrong that deserves an “I’m sorry” present. I mean inquiring on who the seductress was can be construed as a bad thing, but that’s a slap on the wrist transgression.
We’ll have to wait and see what happens.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Getting Antsy

It is that time again, ‘vous time! I have one of my re-enactments this weekend. I’m stoked. I’m about done repairing stuff from last time, such as Clone’s wagon. It threw a wheel at Macktown. I don’t know whom, if anyone, from my group is going. The last couple of people I spoke with pretty much said they were NOT going. Even my oldest boy backed out of going. He decided he would rather go to a concert. I don’t blame him, at his age I’d rather go to a concert as well. As it stands right now, the only people I know for a fact that are going to be there are my lovely wife Ktreva, Clone and myself.

I’m planning to do some shooting this weekend; I have all the supplies I need. I’m even planning to fire a round or two out of my new blunderbuss. I’ll probably have to fire a round ball out of it instead of shot, but that’s okay. It needs firing.

They are calling for nice weather this weekend. I think I’m going to get wet again, continuing the streak from last season. There is only a slight chance of rain, but if I throw up canvas, I’m pretty much guaranteed it is going to be rained on.

I’m looking forward to this event because at the Blogmeet in Stillman Valley about a month ago. Tammi, Teresa and TNT said they where going to come and pose as a Mortar Maiden for me. I need the models and they sure seemed excited to do it! If any of you decide you want to come out for a visit as well, just head to Fort Atkinson, Wisconsin. We’ll be at the Rock River Park. Just look for the Scots up in the upper camp.

Some fabrication required.

Clone received a jungle climber outdoor toy by Little Tikes for his birthday. There wasn’t a chance for me to try to assemble it until last night. After mowing the lawn, I dragged this box of plastic formed parts from my basement outside to assemble said climbing toy. I figured this would take me the better part of an hour to get together. I was wrong… by an hour. It took me two hours. I’m not the handiest person to in the world, but I have plenty of skills. I reran the electric in my house with my father, redid the plumbing. My front porch, I built by hand with my father. My father is a plumbing and electrical engineer. He taught me many things. When growing up we constantly were building something. We did everything from furnishing the basement to adding an addition to the house.

Why did this toy give me such a problem? Because there is no such thing as quality control in the children’s toy industry anymore. Those of you that don’t have children nor have assembled some of these mass produced children’s toys probably don’t understand what I’m saying. Those of you that have, are smiling and nodding. As a warning to perspective parents, and to those thinking of purchasing an item as a gift for someone else, I’m posting EXACTLY how this went.

After getting the toy outside and out of the box (That has no handles), I found the directions. Now I kid you not, the English part of these directions read like they where written by a high school drop out. Don’t believe me. The first line of the directions is:

When assembling wall C to wall A, insert Wall C at an angle close to wall B. Then rotate wall C forward to “lock” it in place. Make sure bottom hooks are “locked” in place.
Where is the step for assembling wall A to wall B? Sure, there is a diagram, but it just shows one happy dad pushing two walls together. The next diagram shows happy dad holding walls A and B together as happy grandfather slides wall C into place easily.

This brings us to our second problem. The parts don’t fit together. Angry Contagion tells irritated Ktreva to hold the walls why he tries to rotate wall C into Wall A. Wait, wall C’s brackets don’t match. I verify that I have all the parts in the right direction. Yes, that’s the way they are supposed to go. After looking at the parts, I determine that the molded plastic forms are not in the correct shape. Using muscle, I try to force the pieces together. Irritated Ktreva is not strong enough to counter the muscle of angry adrenaline pumping Contagion. I proceed to push irritated Ktreva and the toy around like a tackling dummy trying to get the pieces together. You have to understand Ktreva is 5 foot 4’ and 120 dripping wet, she definitely is not of a zaftig build. I tell her to switch sides with me; I’ll hold the wall once we get the parts started. She will then try to push the wall into place. Giving credit to my wife, her bosom heaving, she strained against that wall and it finally locked into place. It also distracted me enough to let my blood pressure drop.

The next step is to add the slide to the piece and getting it to “pop” into place. Again, the parts don’t fit into the slots they are supposed to. Part of it is because the formed plastic pieces appear to have warped or sunken in at different places. However, angry vein in forehead pounding Contagion and Irritated Ktreva were able to force the pieces together relatively quickly.

Next, we had to add on the first platform. The directions state:

Insert platform E first into wall C. Then rotate platform into wall B until it “pops” in place.
Sounds easy enough… IF THE PARTS FIT! I was able to get the first side attached easy enough. I try to rotate the platform into place and succeed in rotating the whole toy. The picture shows happy dad holding the platform while happy grandfather steadies the toy. In real life, angry Contagion snaps at Irritated Ktreva to “Get your skinny ass over and hold this piece of shit in place.” Nope, that didn’t work; again, I’m pushing Ktreva and the toy around like a tackling dummy. We did this before, we switch spots and she pushes as hard as she can. Nope it won’t “pop”. I look at it, good enough; go on to the next steps.

I have to install another platform on the other side of wall B that actually connects to the platform I was having trouble with in the above paragraph. The directions state:

To assemble platform G into wall B, insert the left hook on platform G under the hook on platform E and slide towards wall A. Push right hook in and rotated platform down until it “pops” in place.
Again, the diagram shows happy dad sliding and pushing the piece into place easily while happy grandpa holds the toy so it doesn’t move. Angry Contagion and irritated Ktreva try it just the same way. It doesn’t work after looking at it; furious Contagion notices that there is NO way these two pieces are going together. They don’t fit, and not in that warped plastic kind of way. They are two completely different sizes. They are supposed to fit together easily and yes, I had the correct pieces. There was no way this would work. It would be like me telling you to slide this large coffee can through a hole the size of a pop can. I’d finally had enough with this toy; I grabbed a saw and started cutting away the excess parts. Once I was finished with that, the piece went in the way the directions said. The next part was where I was supposed to push the platform down until it snaps into place on an upright.

I push down as hard as I can, but the knob on the upright will not go through the hole of the platform. I try various things. It won’t go through. I’m sitting on the toy bouncing. It will NOT snap together. DAMMIT, why did I have to become so damn svelte? I have Ktreva go get me some cooking oil and a mallet. Cooking oil will not dissolve the plastic parts like some other oils will, which is why you use it on toys. That and if the child licks it, it’s not going to hurt them. I tell Ktreva to liberally coat the pieces in oil. She ends up soaking them with it. We’re both laughing at this point. After a couple of good whacks with the mallet, the pieces go together.

Now we have to get a threshold piece for the ropes in place. They assemble easily enough. Next, we are supposed to pick up the walls, slide the threshold under and just snap them together. It shows happy dad and happy grandpa doing it easily. Well guess what, no they didn’t fit together either. I tried bouncing on it, everything… it doesn’t fit. So I grab the mallet and take a swing on the wall to get it snap into place, it worked before… CRACK! Uh, bad idea. Angry Contagion cracked the wall. Irritated Ktreva spouts off, “Did you think that was actually going to work?” Anyways, that piece isn’t firmly attached to the toy, but for what it does, it really doesn’t need to be.

The next adventure was trying to get the ropes in place. This is just rope netting for kids to climb on. All you have to do is slide the noted end of the rope through a hole and pull it down into place. Well the knots where way to big and they melted the knots in the nylon rope so you can’t untie them. I look into the hole and see my problem. They never cleaned out the holes after the molding process. So there was excess plastic clogging up the hole. I pull out my pocketknife and cut it all way, viola it fits, it’s still hard to get it into place, but it fits.

Now it was time for some home modifications. These toys have been being stolen out of yards in our neighborhood for a while now. Originally, I was going to fill this one with cement or sand. However, there are no holes for you to be able to do that. I had a large stake with a chain attached to it for securing large heavy objects. I drove that into the ground and with a pad lock, I attached the toy to the stake. It’s not the most secure, but it actually is better then filling with sand or cement.

As for Little Tikes, this is the third toy by them that I’ve had this problem of parts not fitting. I’ve vowed to never by another plastic form toy from them again. I had a similar issue with Radio Flyer, but at least that was relatively easy to fix and didn’t require drastically altering the shape of the pieces. Remember this story if you think of getting one of these toys. Some assembly required is a lie, it should read some fabrication required.

Monday, May 23, 2005

Friends, food and black powder.

I had a fun weekend. I want to thank everyone for their suggestions for a hostess gift; there were many great ideas. My friend e-mailed me back right before we left and said that his wife did drink and she prefers a White Zinfandel. I don’t know squat about Zinfandels since I don’t like them, the only white I really enjoy is a Chardonnay. Since there was not enough time to poll all of you, I just went and bought a bottle from a winery that makes a Chardonnay, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon that I like.

We hit the road around 9:30 AM. Clone lasted for about 20 minutes before he started screaming. To say Clone hates riding in cars is being too mild. He will and has screamed at the top of his lungs for hours on end while in a moving vehicle. He just hates riding. We’ve had people give us various tips and hints over the last two years. We’ve tried every single one and it has failed. Different car seats, tried feeding him, giving him drinks, giving him snacks, making sure he has toys, letting him pick out the toys, not of it has worked. He screamed for almost an hour non-stop.

After arriving at my friend’s house, we spent the afternoon talking and just having a good time. His wife is very nice and polite. She is a very gracious hostess. She made my family and I feel very welcome. My friend’s entire family, including his father, loved Clone. They played with him non-stop. I was worried they would end up being annoyed by him, which never happened. They acted as if he was a favorite nephew.

I talked my friend and his father into taking a trip to the Gander Mountain (A sporting goods store) where they live. They keep talking about how they can get anything they want for black powder shooting there. I would go to the Gander Mountain in town and was never able to find anything I needed. Upon arriving, Right away I notice a difference between the two. THEIRS IS HUGE! The entire store takes up the area of a large K-mart store. In fact the building, it was in used to be a Big K-mart until they moved it. My Gander Mountain is about a quarter to a third of the size of theirs. The Firearm section was at least 3 times as large, probably closer to four times. They even had a selection of flintlock rifles, it was a small selection, but they had some. Unfortunately, for me, they discontinued carrying most of their Flintlock black powder shooting supplies in favor of modern black powder/in-line. They still had a larger selection then my local one did, but they did not have the lubed patches I was wanting. They did have the other cleaning supplies I needed; Grau has a new bore brush for a 12 gauge. .

For dinner that night, they grilled up steak and salmon. It was very delicious. They served it with cheese, macaroni salad, garden salad and for desert: fresh strawberry shortcake. I ate until I about popped. I didn’t want to seem rude and not eat a little of everything, but I just could not ingest that much food. I remember a time when I could, but after the Salmon and most of the steak, I was full. Therefore, I only had a spoonful of the side dishes.

After dinner we built a campfire in his portable fire pit, talked some more and drank. He had been given a bottle of Jack Daniels Single Barrel, special edition. I’ve never had it before and found it rather good. I’m a Jack Daniels fan. When I can’t get a good single malt scotch, or if I want to mix. Jack Daniels is my whiskey of choice. That night my friend surprised me by pulling out a guitar and singing. I never knew he could sing let alone play the guitar. He says he’s shy about it. Being as I am also a shy person, I can understand his reluctance to play in public.

On Sunday, we went to a Civil War re-enactment. I don’t do civil war, but I enjoy going to these history events as public. This event was held at a nice museum center that had buildings from the 1840’s up to 1910, including a fort. When we first arrived, we went into a building that was housing a display of various Civil War artifacts and replica displays. I walk in and the first thing I see is a table of replica firearms used during the war. I head over to look; hey, black powder toys are black powder toys. On the table is a flintlock musket. This doesn’t surprise me. At the beginning of the war, many southern troops started fighting with what was available to them. This musket however looked funny. I waited my turn to get up close to it, the whole time examining it as I waited. I thought it looked kind of like a Brown Bess, but it was smaller. I own a Brown Bess; I’m very familiar with the look and style of them. One moment I am sure it was a Bess, then the next I was thinking it wasn’t. When I was able to touch it, I was right, it had a shorter draw, thinner/shorter butt, smaller hand bulb and was only a .69 Cal. Your standard Bess is a .75 cal. The demonstrator saw me looking it at and inquired if I had any questions. I asked what it was, and he said it was indeed a Brown Bess. He let me pick it up and I immediately knew why it was so different. It was the Japanese version of the Brown Bess made for Dixie Gun Works. What was amusing to me was the guy started asking me questions about the Bess. He had bought it used from some guy just as a display piece on his table. I filled him in on what I knew about the Bess, and gave him a couple of sources to look up for documentation of Brown Besses in the Civil War.

We walked around and saw various displays and shows. I was able to pick up 300 paper black powder cartridge tubes from a vendor for $10.00. Much cheaper then when I have to buy them over the net at $24.00 for 250 of them. We stuck around and watched the battle. Clone was the only child there not afraid of the cannon fire. In fact, every time they would fire the canons he would stop what he was doing and shout “cool”.

We had to leave a little earlier then I wanted to. Clone was tired and was getting cranky. He refused to sleep in the stroller we brought with for him to ride in. We made our good-bye’s and headed out. Clone screamed for 90% of the ride home. The other 10% was when he dozed off.

We had a great weekend; it was a lot of fun. Now I get to do two re-enactments back to back. I’m excited. Of course, nothing is being done around the house, but that’s okay, I’m not there to look at it anyway.

Friday, May 20, 2005

Maybe I'm too distrusting.

It’s funny how some things work out. Yesterday a guy knocked on my front door. I was on the computer (of course), so my wife answered it. I didn’t catch the beginning of the conversation, but I caught my wife say to the guy, “My husband owns it.” Now, me being a normally distrusting individual, I had little warning bells going off in my head. So I get up from the computer and go to the door. There is this white male, about 6 foot 175 pounds short brown hair, brown eyes, slightly tanned complexion wearing a white polo shirt with a company logo on hit for Honeywell, and blue jeans. He has an ID badge around his neck with the same company logo and his picture on it. He was holding a metal, compartmented clipboard. I have no idea who this guy is and why he’s talking to my wife and what he’s asking. I knew it was time for me to take over the conversation. So in mid sentence, wearing one of my “I don’t like you” faces, I interrupt him with, “May *I* help you?”

He goes on to tell me that he is an intern for Honeywell security systems. He was wondering if I owned the house. I responded, “I do.” Quickly he went on to explain that he liked our front porch and thought it was an eye catcher for passer bys. Three years ago, my father and I tore down my old rickety front porch and built a new one from scratch. My father custom made the sunburst designed railings. It does stand out; I’ve never seen another like it before. We get many compliments on it, so it wasn’t unusual that he liked it, him coming up to my door to tell me made me want to tell my wife to, “Get the gun.”

He explains that he was walking through the neighborhood looking for houses to advertise for his company. He asked if he could place a sign in my front yard by the porch as an advertisement. It wasn’t a big sign, about the size of your standard sheet of notebook paper. I was getting ready to boot him off my porch when he says, “My company will pay you...” Okay, I’m a whore, he had my attention. “…well they won’t actually pay you…” Loosing my attention “…we will give you one of our new state of the art security systems for free…” He had my attention again, my wife and I had talked about getting a security system for the house, but the cost of them was a little more then what we wanted to spend at this time. “… all you have to do is keep this sign in your front yard for 3 years.”

I make eye contact with my wife. The kind of eye contact that people whom have a close relationship and have known each other for years make where you can communicate with out saying a word. I tell the guy I’m game, and ask what he has. So he comes into my house looking at the doors. Now I’m not sold this guy is legitimate yet. I’m wondering if he’s casing the joint. I tell him, “I don’t really need a security system, everyone leaves me alone. Whenever someone in the neighborhood moves in, the other neighbors warn them that about me. I’m a re-enactor so I’m constantly outside practicing with swords, cleaning muskets and firearms, working on my artillery pieces or just burning off black powder. Most people in my neighborhood won’t even talk to me.” While showing him the doors I’m giving him a tour of my scary looking primitive weapon collection. He showed interest in some of my swords so I showed them to him, explained how they were used and what it feels like to cut into someone while holding that type of sword. He saw my Blunderbuss and asked about that. I told him, “It’s a primitive meat grinder. You put black powder and what ever you can fit down the barrel, and when you shoot someone at close range you make a fine red mist out of them.” It’s not exactly how they work, but he didn’t need to know that. It was a scare tactic.

He finished his assessment of the house. After performing an ownership confirmation on the property, he asked me when I’m home. Yea, I’m just going to throw that out to some guy whom walks up to my door. So I lie and tell him that I have sporadic hours and don’t know my schedule from one week to the next. Calling his office, he looks up for when they have someone available. They tried to set up for installation next week, but that was bad for me. He comes back with, “We have a crew up the street installing another alarm. They can install it tonight.” I’m very skeptical now. How convenient that they are available to install it that day. I say sure, why not. The whole time I’m pumping the guy for information. The more information he gives up, if it’s a scam, the more likely he is to make a mistake. The guy starts to fill out the paperwork. He starts talking about installation fees. I’m thinking here’s the catch. Then he says I’m not responsible for that since we are a demo home. He then goes on about tax and permits. Okay, here’s the catch. Nope, I’m not responsible for those either. He tells me the only thing I have to pay for is the monitoring fee, if I want it, and that will be discounted and locked in for 3 years.

If I don’t pay the monitoring fee, the alarm still works; it just won’t call the police/fire/medical. The fee for monitoring isn’t that much, and it gives me a discount on my homeowners insurance. All right, I sign up for the monitoring. The guy gives me all the paperwork, brochures, and pamphlets for the installation. I finally start to believe this is legitimate.

The technicians arrive and the original guy leaves. The technicians install the security system, get it all set up and tested. Confirm it works with the monitoring company and have my system synchronized with theirs. It took them a little longer then normal because they forgot to check if I had DSL and hooked up the lines wrong. They also tried to install a motion detector too close to the main panel, so they had to move it. When they finished, they left.

Today I checked out their company, and sure enough, it is legit. As long as I keep that sign in my front yard for three years, all the equipment is mine, free of charge. I don’t have to pay anything for it. If the sign was to be stolen, I call them and they bring me a new one. After the three years is up, I can get rid of the sign and keep the equipment. It’s a win/win situation for us!

Maybe I shouldn’t be so distrusting of people…. Nah.

Supporting my blog Dad-pa.

One of my Blog Dad-pa’s (Harvey of Bad Example) is lamenting the fact that he is not the number one search for filthy lies Glenn Reynolds. In his comments, poor Harvey states that he has written more filthy lies about Glenn Reynolds then have been written by Frank J at IMAO.

Why would this hurt Harvey so? It confused me. I spent the last 24 hours pondering this. Trying to discover what hidden part of Harvey’s psyche demanded that he be the number one hit for filthy lies Glenn Reynolds. He stated that it’s because his filthy lies about Glenn Reynolds haven’t brought him some much-sought attention from said Glenn Reynolds.

At first, I thought this could be the answer. I know the feeling; being the unwanted stump in the Bad Example family tree. I crave attention from my blogging superiors and mentors. I giggle in mirth upon seeing one of them leave a comment here. However, that just did not make sense for poor Harvey. Harvey is the blogging reproductive god that spawned the Bad Example family. I cannot see Harvey actually stooping to my level of paranoia and self blog-loathing. No, that is truly not the case for Harvey.

Therefore, I went back through and read all the filthy lies about Glenn Reynolds. They are very amusing, if not disturbing. I must say Harvey has quite the skill at spinning a fabricated tale or two about the man. While reading these, it came to me.

Harvey is power hungry! He started his own internet clan in order to get a small, but loyal powerbase in order to launch himself. Then he abandoned his loyal readers to start posting over at IMAO, knowing we would wait around for scraps thrown at us. Now he is trying to go after the big dog. He wants Glenn Reynolds, to not only acknowledge his existence, but to help back his slow domination of the internet.

Since I, the unwanted stump of Clan Bad Example, acknowledge myself as nothing more then a suitable place to climb over to get to better things, I will support Harvey in his quest for domination. Unfortunately, I don’t have any perceived, let alone real influence in the blogosphere. So I must ask you readers to go and help Harvey in his domination of filthy lies Glenn Reynolds.

**This public service announcement was brought to you independently of Bad Example and was paid for by private funds. Harvey threatening to crush Miasmatic Review into subatomic particles had nothing to do with the decision to post this.**

Thursday, May 19, 2005

I love a good twisted sense of humor.

Today my employer sent me to a CPR/AED (Automated External Defibrillator) class as part of my being on the Emergency Response Team (ERT). I was just put on the ERT team in the last month. This is part of my being a Mentor and setting a better example to the minions. I’ve worked here for almost 6 years they never once asked me to be on the ERT team until now. However, this time when they asked they said, “We thought you would be perfect for the job with your Law Enforcement/911 background.” I did catch myself from asking why it took them this long to figure that little mental morsel out. You don’t have to be on management to be a member of the ERT, nor does seniority have anything to do with it. People that have been with this company for less time then I, have been on the team for 2-3 years. This little assignment doesn’t bother me, as it makes sense to me. I just wish they would let me bring in my asp (retractable baton) for crowd control during emergencies. I’m kidding; I would never risk jail time for my own pleasure.

I actually enjoyed this CPR/AED class. The instructor had a very similar sense of humor to mine. That and it’s been almost 7 years since my last CPR certification. I noticed very little has changed. One of the things that did change was the emphasis on breaking ribs. When I went back in 98, I had a trainer that kept stressing how important it was that we use the correct amount of force or we would break ribs. He even had a practice dummy with wooden slats that simulated ribs. If you broke one of the slats, that meant you would have broken a rib. I was constantly breaking the slats; I never could get the pressure just right with out causing broken bones. Today’s instructor told us, “Don’t worry about breaking ribs, you are going to do it. Everyone breaks ribs when they do CPR. We don’t want you worrying so much about broken ribs that you don’t do the victim any good.” He followed that with one of my favorite lines in the class, “ Plus each time you break a rib, the compressions are that much easier, so keep that in mind when he hear the first ones snap.” I started chuckling so he says to me, “That does not mean you get to run up to the victim on the ground and stomp on their chest until all of their ribs are broken just so you can perform the compressions easier.” I started laughing harder because that was EXACTLY what I was thinking.

During the part of the class when we were going over the AED, he kept stressing, “Make sure when the machine tells you to clear the body, you have everyone clear away from it. Not only for safety reasons, but if they are touching the victim it could throw off the sensors trying to get vitals and cause a misread.” In case you that don’t know what a defibrillator is, it’s a machine that is used to shock a heart out of a fibrillation so that it can beat normal. He kept stressing this redundantly and to the point of annoyance. I understand why, but I was sure that anyone listening to this computerized voice say “Clear the area, make sure no one is touching the patient”, that the operator would do just that. Well I was wrong. He had a training AED with him and a test dummy to use it on so you could see how the system works. I went first; these things are very easy to use, any 6 year old should be able to follow the pictures and directions to figure out how to use one. Before the machine even tells me to do it, I tell the instructor to “Move away from the body!” I was rather forceful about it, and the instructor, impressed by my assertiveness, admitted he took two steps back before he even thought about it. After I finished I watched as the other people in the class went.

Every time they would start to attach the pads the instructor would be right next to the dummy until they told him to move away. He had to repeatedly remind others in the class to clear the area, even after the machine told them. I think he was finally irritated enough at repeating himself so when the second to last person went, he not only was next to the dummy, he was touching it’s leg. The machine told the trainee to clear the area, which she ignored. It then told her to shock the patient. With his hand still on the dummy, she pushed the shock button.

All of a sudden, the instructor goes rigid and shakes wildly. He then falls over lying on the ground next to the test dummy. Everyone else is just staring wide-eyed, I rush over and give him a little kick with my toe, snickering I ask, “Are you okay?” He grunts and starts laughing. The trainee looks scared, you know the look, the one where someone did something really wrong and hurt somebody else. The instructor stands up and says, “Two lessons here. ALWAYS CLEAR THE AREA BEFORE SHOCKING THE VICTIM! How many times do I have to say that? The machine even tells you! Fortunately, this is a training machine. There is no shock, not that electricity would travel through foam rubber to where I was touching the leg. The other lesson, only Mr. Contagion came over to check to see if I was okay and followed the training of this class. Even though he was laughing at me, at least he checked. Remember your training people!”

After the class, he asked me why I laughed when he got “shocked”. Admittingly I told him that by that time I wasn’t paying attention to what was going on, because I figured I could run one of the AEDs by that point. So when he went rigid and fell over I didn’t see where his hand was on the dummy. I found it highly amusing that the instructor would do something so foolish to get himself hurt, I mean he is the expert! He understood my sense of humor and agreed that was amusing. He also confided that he does that at least once a class because inevitably half the class doesn’t clear the area before shocking.

I love it when the instructors do things to make the class livelier.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Tales from Wallyworld.

A new Super Wallyworld opened up in my town today replacing the old Wallyworld that was located right next door. I hate Wallyworld; I hate it with a passion. I will go out of my way to shop at any other store, even if it is more expensive. The only time I, shop there anymore is if I absolutely cannot find an item I’m looking for anywhere else.

Today however I decided I am going to go to the new Wallyworld on my lunch period to check it out. Why you ask? I could be lie and say, that I was curious as to what the new store was like or that I wanted to give the store another chance. No, I will not do that. I will be honest with you; I put myself into a situation of extreme discomfort for you, my loyal readers’ entertainment and mirth. I was sure that my readers would find my adventures in Wallyworld entertaining. So I hope you all enjoy the tale I’m about to tell, because I did this for you.

The first thing I noticed upon entering the parking lot was that it was packed, packed to the edge. At first I was thinking don’t these people have jobs. Then I thought maybe they where all on there lunch periods as well. The store was going to be packed. I checked my pulse and I’m still under 70 BPM (beats per minute). I make my way into the vestibule; grab a cart… so far, so good. Then it happens, I step into the store where four ravenous, cannibalistic zombies attack us. Well okay they where greeters with fliers for pictures and sale items, but they came at as like ravenous cannibalistic zombies… on speed!

The next thing I noticed was the Shrine of Star Wars merchandise they had right by the entrance. They had all the merchandise that had anything to do with Star Wars right there. Including the wall of Darth Vader Cheese-its and the Dark Chocolate M&M’s. I only had to push one pimply faced geek out of my way; I think the rest are lined up already for the movie tonight.

My initial thought of the store being filled with people on their lunch breaks was erroneous. Nope, this was mainly the welfare crowd. People had driven from all over town to see the new Wallyworld. They must have spent at least a bucks worth of gas to get here to save $.50 on a tube of toothpaste. Which to be honest was not a sale price; just what they call an everyday bargain and I bought the same brand last week at a competitor for the same price. I guess the perceived sale was enough to draw the crack junkies out of the woodwork as well. The gaunt drooling idiots wandering up and down the aisles protectively hugging their Sam’s choice bag of potato chips and cookies looking for steel wool. The fact that one of them wanted to put their stuff in my cart, “To hold it for them” almost brought me to a boiling point. I unkindly advised them that if they needed their merchandise held, I’m sure the store would be more then happy to provide them with a cart or basket of their own, FOR FREE. My heart rate was now at about 90 BPM.

I will say this for the new Wallyworld; it has much larger aisles then the old one. That was one of my major complaints about Wallyworld is that you cannot maneuver your carts through the aisles. This did not stop me from having to do some cart jousting at least twice. People where gawking at the same merchandise that the original store had, only in a different layout, and not paying attention to where they where going. I was pushing my cart down the main aisle when this lady just bursts out of the aisle in front me almost causing a cart-astrophe. I’m not saying she was strung out on crack, but she was strung out on crack. Her powdery lips cracked into a smile as she apologized. She didn’t look directly at me. However, she did a good job of following the ethereal butterflies that must have been floating around me.

Another older lady came barging out of a side aisle and rammed her cart right into me. When I say older, I mean OLDER She must have been around since Jesus was a child. She had the nerve to tell me to watch where I was going, I pointed out to her, that she bumped into me. I did not plow into her. She came back with, “Don’t you get flippant with me.” I growled at her, “Well maybe if you could see past the end of your cart, even with those coke bottle glasses on, you wouldn’t be plowing into people. There is no reason to be a witch about it. I know you’re old and alone and if I was your kid, I wouldn’t come to see you either, but don’t take it out on me.” The last I saw of her she was leaning against a display of faux Tupperware grabbing a cross to her chest and gasping for air.

While there, I decided to pick up some items we needed around the house. One item being lint traps for the washing machine. I ask one of blue vest wearing wastes of space where the lint traps are located. In a kind and courteous manner, they tell me it is with the detergent over in the grocery section. I’m not sure why in a Wallyworld they would have detergent in with groceries, but who am I to question the all-powerful Sam. So I tool my cart across the store, deftly avoiding crack junkies and the welfare dependants. I get over to the detergent, I’m not able to locate the lint traps, and I stop another blue vest and ask where they are. He tells me they are with the detergent. I pause, take a deep breath and ask, “Is this not the detergent aisle?” Thinking maybe, I had the wrong detergent aisle. He responds back with, “Oh yea, it is.” My heart is now at about 110 BPM. “Where are the lint traps at, I can’t seem to find them?” He looks around and for a second, comes back to me and says, “They aren’t here.” Heart rate is now at 135 BPM I am now at a fat burning level of heart rate for someone my age. Therefore, I ask my question again, “Where are the lint traps at then?” He half laughs and says, “They must be in plumbing”. Me, “Where is plumbing?” Brain Child in Blue Vest, “That’s on the other side of the store.” Me “I hate you.” Shocked looking Blue Vest guy, “What?” Me, “I said ‘Thank you’.” I walk off mumbling that he should have at least gotten his GED.

I make my way BACK across the store; get over to the home improvement section. I see a blue vested worker heading my way. I try to get her attention, “Ma’am, where are your lint traps.” Girl in Blue Vest, “They are with the detergent.” My heart is now at 155 BPM, the warning alarm on my watch starts going off. I am officially having a cardiovascular work out. “I was just there, no they are not, and I was sent back over here… where is your plumbing aisle?” Shocked girl in blue vest, “Ummm, it’s around here somewhere.” Me, “Never mind… I’ll find it.” I look around, find the plumbing aisle, the lint traps, and proceed to leave… I could not get out of this store fast enough.

I was thinking of stopping by the pharmacy to pick up some aspirin for the headache I had developed. As I approached the pharmacy section I could see that the crack junkies where being pushed out by the crystal meth fiends trying to get the cough syrup and aspirin for themselves. I just decided to cut my loses and leave. I get to the check out lanes, leave with out another event and make my way to the parking lot. In the time I was in the store, about 30 minutes, the lot was over run not only with more cars, but with carts abandoned everywhere. Even the carts properly pushed into the cart corrals had lines of carts extending into the lanes blocking traffic.

So if you ever plan on going to a Super Wallyworld on an opening day, remember this story. I did this as a precautionary tale for you, my readers, because I care about you… and the only reason you come around is to be entertained.

Take pity on a wayward soul!

I need your help, it’s pretty obvious by now that the social graces are not one of my strong personality traits. We are going to visit a friend of mine in the suburbs of Chicago for the weekend and he and his wife invited us to stay with them instead of getting a hotel. Usually when I am invited somewhere for dinner or in this case for the weekend, I like to bring a nice bottle of wine, Scotch or whatever they like to drink for the Host and Hostess. The problem is that I know my friend is a drinker, I however do not know if his wife drinks. I am mainly bringing the gift for her since she is the one that suggested we stay with them.

I’ve met his wife 4-5 times now, but never in a situation where anyone was drinking. I want to bring her a gift, but I don’t know if alcohol is appropriate or not. I have sent an e-mail to my friend asking if his wife drinks, but I believe he told me he would be out of town until Friday. Right now I’m wishing I started every conversation with, “Hi, I like to drink, do you? If so, what is your drink of choice?”, but I don’t. Therefore, I’m kind of out on a limb. I figure it’s better to be safe then sorry and buy something more neutral. I just have no idea what. I really don’t want to get a plant, as I’m not sure what kind of plant she likes or does not like. That was the only other idea I could come up with for a gift.

Nothing is really popping into my head as a good idea right now. All the idea’s I’m having would be appropriate if I was going over to some of my regular friends houses, their wives don’t expect anything from me. They know I’m an uncouth heathen of legendary proportions. I could show up with anything from a six-pack of Schlitz malt liquor to handcuffs and a riding crop and they would just shrug it off as me being me. However the wife in this couple is unknowing of my personality, and I’d rather start off making a decent impression before I go shatter her innocence, crush her belief that all people are essentially good, decent people and destroy this mental image she has of me being some kind of polite and personable gentleman. Yea, you can stop laughing now. I didn’t give her that impression, I don’t know where she got it, but I don’t want it to come crashing down on her in a rude realism when I show up with some crotchless panties and chocolate pudding.

For those of you that have some social graces please help! I am throwing myself at your mercies! I only have two days to think of something, please hurry. So spread the word far and wide, you are my only hope!

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Another artistic commercial

I was doing my evening browsing of various blogs when over at I hate my Cubicle they had a link to the commercial for TBS's "The Real Gilligan's Island, season 2". Now I didn't watch the first season, I had no interest in seeing the second season. However, any red blooded heterosexual male needs to check out the commercial for it, and any woman that is either into the "Arts" or thinking of dabbling into the "arts" should also watch it. I don't know if I'll watch the show, I think I saw all the best "parts" already.

I'll tell you what, if the original series was like this, I'd have never left my room. Plus my wife would never be able to go a weekend with out wearing her Mary Ann costume.

It's not just my kids I harass.

For once I get to post a story about Grau instead of him posting about me, well okay it’s about his Elderspawn. For those of you that are new, or slow on the uptake, Grau and I are both re-enactors. We belong to the same group, so we do a lot of events together. Since we both have kids we tend to bring the childerbeasts along with us. There is another guy in our group that also has a child, and when he does events he tends to bring his kid along as well. For the protection of… well me… I’m going to be referring to the children as Elderspawn (Grau’s) and Otherspawn.

We participated in the last Northern Illinois Celtic Fest in July of 2002. My wife didn’t go because we had just found out she was pregnant with Clone (Which is the only reason I remember the year). I was selling swords at the time and had a table set up in hopes of making some cash of off the public. Unfortunately there were two other sword dealers there and they where able to under sell me. The swords they where selling were crap and I sold the real thing, and I refused to sell anything I wouldn’t use in combat. They had stainless steel and I had high carbon steel. So the prices of their swords were much lower then mine, and that’s all the public saw.

The problem with selling swords is that you get all kinds of attention from kids. Every little kid wants to come over and touch and pick up the swords. Well I don’t let them do that for safety and legal reasons. It isn’t just the public’s kids that are want to do that as well. I had Elderspawn and Otherspawn at my table, blocking the public, wanting to look and pick up swords. I kept telling them to get away and go bug their fathers. They would leave for a while, but they would come back. I finally had enough.

I own a pair of black and green leather gauntlets. I use them when sword fighting. After the umpteenth time of telling to get their dirty, greasy kid hands off of my swords, I picked them up and asked them if they knew what they where. I got a resounding, “No.” and a blank look. I advised the boys that those gauntlets are my “Spanking Gloves”. When ever kids get out of hand, I will put them on to spank the child because they hurt more. I then proceeded to put on the gloves and clap my hands. Because of the way they are made, when you do that it sounds like you are hitting a lot harder then you really are. The boys went running off and I thought I was done with them.

NO! The little snot weasels came back. They would try to say something to me, and I’d either hold up the gloves or say, “Spanking Gloves”. Nothing else, just that and it went on for ours. Our last conversation went like so:

Elderspawn, “Contagion, I just…”

Contagion, “Spanking Gloves”

Elderspawn, “But I…”

Contagion, “Spanking Gloves”

Otherspawn, “Can I…”

Contagion, “Spanking Gloves”

Otherspawn, “But we were…”

Contagion, “Spanking Gloves”

Both, “But wait…”

Contagion, “Spanking Gloves”

Olderspawn, “My dad has…”

Contagion, “Spanking Gloves” (Picks up gauntlets)

Otherspawn, “I’m going to…”

Contagion, “Spanking Gloves” (Starts putting them on)

Both kids go running in opposite directions screaming in fear. I hear Olderspawn crying to Grau, “Dad, Contagion is going to spank me!” I can’t remember what Grau said, but it didn’t sound too soothing. I heard Otherspawn tell his grandfather (Whom is also in our group), “Contagion said he was going to spank us!” between sobs. I remember the grandfather’s response was along the lines of, “I’m sure you did something to deserve it, it’ll stop hurting after a couple of hours.”

To this day when ever one of these boys starts to get in my hair… or honestly just to screw with their heads, I’ll just advise them I brought the spanking gloves with and I am not afraid to use them. It’s been almost three years of this now and the rest of the group still gets a chuckle out of it. They also will come up to me and ask in front of the boys if I brought them.

Monday, May 16, 2005

Yet another example of my parenting skills.

This weekend I took my questionable parenting style to yet another level. I was supposed to go out this weekend, but as my previous post details I was not able to go. We were heading out and had already bought the beer/alcohol we were going to take with to the surprise party. The hostess throwing the party had asked the guests to BYOB. She didn’t think she’d be able to squirrel away enough for everyone with out tipping off her husband.

So Sunday, with my wife and Clone feeling better I decided to help myself to the beer. They were feeling alright, but not good enough to do anything, and that beer needed to be drunk. It would have been remiss of my duties as man to leave that much beer lying around not being drunk. All the trammels of my being able to enjoy this golden nectar where cast aside when my wife advised she no longer felt ill.

So there I sat on the couch watching movies and drinking my 16 oz cans of beer. The local store had a sale going on the Miller Lite Rusty Wallace cans. It was cheaper for me to purchase the six-pack of 16 oz cans then to get the standard six-pack of 12 oz cans. Now with these bigger cans comes the added problem of them warming up faster. I looked around and grabbed the first can cozy I could find. Of course, I looked at it after I started drinking; it was a Boy Scout can cozy. It had the logo and the motto, “Be prepared” written on it. So there I am sitting on my couch drinking a beer in a NASCAR can being held by a Boy Scout can cozy in a t-shirt and underwear. (Yea, I can hear the screams from that mental image) I know, I was pretty white trash on Sunday. I did not care. Whom did I have to impress? The family that spent the previous day with their heads in a toilet being sick.

I’m sitting on the couch watching the remake of Ocean’s 11. Clone brings over his glass of juice and climbs up onto the couch with me. He sees my drink, points to it and says, “Dadda, water”. I look him in the eye and say, “Beer”. He replies with, “bear”. I tell him, “Not bear. Beer!” He understands, points to my can and very proudly says, “Beer”. I smile and congratulate him on saying it right. Then he tells me, “Dadda, I want beer.” I just point to his glass and tell him he has that to drink. So he holds up his glass and proudly states, “I drink beer.” He then empties the contents of his glass, mostly down his throat, some down the front of him. He turns to me and says, “Dadda! I want more beer.” It was at this point that I realized that I have confused Clone and he thinks any drink is beer. Eh, that’ll mortify my mother, it’s all good.

So for the next 30 minutes he keeps talking about beer. The kid just would not shut up about more beer and drinking beer and wanting beer. Nothing would quiet him; he just kept on talking about it. If I tried to ignore him, he’d only start yelling louder and louder about beer. Finally, to get him to be quiet, I acknowledged him with a raising of my can and said, “Here’s to you.” He then repeated the same gesture and words back to me.

From then on, before he took a drink, he would raise his glass and say, “Here’s to you!” Out of reflex, I would instantly take a drink. Clone, thinking this was great fun and a game, kept doing it over and over. I ended up emptying two of those 16 oz cans in less than 20 minutes. (Yea, Pavlov’s dog has nothing on me!) It finally dawns on me what is going on. My 2 year old is sitting on the couch next to me talking about drinking his beer, raising a glass of his “beer” (AKA apple juice) and getting me to drink with him by giving a brief toast. This has struck me as insanely amusing.

My wife on the other hand is mortified by what she has observed. She is convinced Clone will ask my mother today for a beer. At which point my mother WILL blame her for not taking control of me and curbing my genetic disposition to alcohol. Thus, it is my wife’s fault that my 2 year old wants to be a drunk.

To me, the whole thing is funny. I can just see Clone saddle up to the table, slap his hand down and order my mother to bring him and his friends beer. My mother will try to get him to say juice, but the damage will be done. Clone and his friends will all be sitting at the table chanting, “Beer! Beer! Beer!” My Mother, all exasperated after tying repeatedly to get them to settle down and call it juice, finally breaks down and tells them it’s beer. Clone and his gang are happy again and are able to get back to there plan of knocking over the bank so they can get their much-coveted legos back. My mother will add another entry into her, “Why my son is going to hell” journal.

I am such a good parent, in that Al Bundy kind of way.

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Not a typical Saturday

It's Saturday night and I'm home. Why? Because my family has come down the flu or some other illness that makes stomachs act up. Thankfully, I have a genetically freaky immune system so I don't get sick very often. Therefore, I'm watching after Clone while my wife tries to get her stomach to settle down.

We had big plans for today. My wife and I were supposed to go to a surprise party for a friend of ours from work... Yes, I actually have 1-2 friends from work! Don't act so surprised!

Before we went to that I was going to take my wife out on a little date. We were going to go see a movie, in a theater, and then out to dinner. Everything was fine all morning. We readied Clone to go to my parents, stopped by the store to pick up some last minute items we needed. As we headed to my parents to drop Clone off, he decided to redecorate the interior of our van.

*I* do not handle vomit too well, I think I've said that before. The drive back to the house was rather interesting. Me trying to keep from loosing my own stomach contents by driving with my head pretty much out the window. Ktreva was trying to help contain Clone's stomach activities. Once we got home I had to clean out the van while she took care of Clone. I did my best, but curdled milk and partially digest eggs does NOT clean out of upholstery too well. I think I'm going to have to sink some serious cash into having that van detailed.

Shortly after Clone was settled, Ktreva started getting sick. It's made for a long day, and nowhere near as fun as what we had planned. Such is life. To look on the bright side, at least we weren't in Wisconsin when she started getting sick, nor where we half way through a movie.

Both are in bed right now trying to sleep. I think I'm going to entertain myself by playing some video games.

Friday, May 13, 2005

Tales of Intoxication.

Army Wife Toddler Mom wanted to do an about me post, so she asked people for questions. I was nice enough to ask her:
“What is the most embarrassing thing you've done while drinking? Details
please, if it involves another woman we want pictures.”

She kind of answers it in this post. Plus, she didn’t have any pictures. To be a good sport I decided to share one of my drinking stories BEFORE Grau decides to post on it. I swear when he runs out of ideas on things to post, he just pops up a “Contagion” story. This story happens to take place in a Strip Club. I know how much Army Wife likes to keep pointing out my stripper fascination this week so this should really make her happy.

Before I go any further, it is important to note that I was completely and utterly single at the time of this situation. That means not only was I not married, I was also not dating nor had any prospects at the time. Therefore, I was a completely free man, couple that with not being Catholic I was free to do whatever I wanted guilt free.

It was July in 1996 I went out with some friends to a local strip club (Names with held to protect the innocent. Rules of strip etiquette state that you cannot divulge information on other participants for activities that happen in a strip club. I am only divulging information pertaining to myself. Therefore, I am not in violation. However, I am still refusing to add other names to this list). This particular club was full nude. We had been out drinking in advance and I had drunk quite a bit. When we arrived at the club we discovered they where having a headliner that night. That meant the place was busier then usual.

We paid the cover and found a table and started watching the girls and having a good time. The headliner took to the stage to begin her set. She was a pretty girl and went by the name Echo Canyon. Silicon Valley would have been more appropriate. She was very athletic on the stage so I decided to go up and tip her. I walk up to the stage; I have my money in my hand leaning on the edge of the stage that goes up to my chest. She looks at me and pulls me up onto the stage. SCORE! She takes my belt off and starts to hit me with it. DOUBLE SCORE! Whispering in my ear, she asks me, “I’m not hurting you too much am I?” I responded with, “You can do what ever you want.” She cocked an eyebrow and in a sultry voice responds with, “oh, really?”

The next thing I know she has put my belt around my neck like a leash. She hollers at me to get on my hands and knees. I’m having fun and am socially lubricated, so I do as I’m told. As she climbs onto my back she yells, “I’m going to ride you like a dog!” and proceeds to ride me around the stage. TRIPLE SCORE! She tells me to bark like a dog. So I do a little “woof woof”. She smacks me with the belt and tells me to bark like a big dog. I give the biggest, deepest, loudest bark I could muster. The audience is howling. There is money flying at the stage. She finishes her stunt and double checks if I’m okay. I told her I was fine and it was fun. She came back to our table with me and bought ME a drink while my friends and I talked with her.

Later that evening she is up on stage doing another set. I walked up to give her another tip. This time when she sees me, she reaches down into the back of my pants and starts tugging on my boxers. I swear to at first I thought I pissed her off and she was going to give me a wedgie! Nope, this woman has decided I needed no underwear. She yanks on them until she tears them off of my body. She puts the elastic band around her neck and finishes her set with them on. Yes they where clean, they where also new I had just bought them that week. I did not buy a drink for myself the rest of the night. I had guys from other tables buy me drinks. I would go to the bathroom and inevitably, some guy would see me in there and would tell me how great that was and offer to buy me a drink.

Sad thing about that night was that I turned out to be a fluffer. Some of us went to breakfast with her after the bar closed at Denny’s. I’ve never heard of this happening to anyone else, the headliner actually went home with another guy from my table. Strike out!

I was not dating my wife at that time, but she has heard the story, apparently, I’m the only person that follows strip club etiquette. She has asked me to bark for her and I haven’t. I have barked only a couple of other times in my life since then, both were before we were dating. My being ridden like a dog and barking days are long past. What’s funny is how many times this story gets brought up when I’m out with the guys.

So there you go, a first hand embarrassing drunk story. If anyone else wants to share, be my guest. Just don’t feel you have to.

Problems with UPS

Over at Iowa Geek, Jody has her war story of dealing with UPS. Some of you may remember when I received my shipment of black powder I had to go out to UPS to pick it up. There is a reason why. UPS is NOT allowed to leave anything at my house for any reason.

In 2001, I ordered my Musket from Dixie Gun Works. I spent a nice chunk of change to get the exact musket I wanted, including manufacturer and accessories. I remember the day it arrived, vividly. I had to work late that day, and it wasn’t uncommon for my wife to call me regarding something trivial, be it dinner or what. When the phone at my desk rang and I saw, it was her number I wasn’t too surprised. She starts the conversation with, “Hey guess what? Your musket arrived today. UPS just left it sitting out on the front porch.” Okay, I was pissed. A nearly $1,000.00 firearm, albeit black powder, and bayonet was left sitting out on my front porch where everyone could see it. I was more then a little miffed. I also sold swords at the time and they would leave those as well. I finally changed the delivery point for the swords to my parent’s home where someone was home all day.

I called UPS and explained, heatedly but in a polite manner, that I did not want any packages left on my front porch anymore under any circumstances. I also explained to them that we have had a rash of packages stolen off porches in the neighborhood. It was some juvenile punks being an annoyance to society. The local delivery supervisor stated she would put a signature required on my house. That meant that any time a package was delivered to my address, they needed a signature to leave it.

A couple of weeks later I come home from work, there is a package on my front porch. I call UPS again. I start going off on my problem again. The supervisor states there is a signature required, she will check with the driver as to why it was overridden and it wouldn’t happen again.

A couple of weeks later, I’m walking through my living room and I see a UPS driver walking out of my driveway. I go to leave my front door and there is a package blocking the door. I yell out to the driver that she is not supposed to be leaving packages on my front porch. She states she leaves them all the time in this neighborhood. I advise her there is a signature required on THIS ADDRESS! I go off on the fact she didn’t even ring the bell/knock on the door. She claims she did, but if she did, I didn’t hear it. She then gets snippy about having to carry a package to my door then walk back to the truck with it. She also brings up she knows it has to do with the delivery of the musket, that it’s okay to do that with black powder, and they do that all the time. So I advised her I was contacting an attorney and I was going to have a restraining order put against UPS and their affiliates. I did not want their company making any more deliveries to my house. She was left rather indignantly.

I call UPS and demand to speak with a regional manager. I was passed around for a while until I received the regional VP for UPS. I explained the whole situation and told him that I no longer wanted anyone from his company delivering anything to my house and that I was no longer going to use UPS to make deliveries for me. He asked, very politely, if he could check into this and call me back after investigating, I agreed.
He calls me back and says that yes, there is a signature required on the house, he can see where the driver was just overriding the signature and he would deal with it. He asked me what solution I would like. I told him, if they deliver a package, and I’m not home leave a note. I will then call and have it put on hold so I can go pick it up. He agreed that would be acceptable. He then gave me his direct line to call if there were any further problems.

I made sure nothing was shipped to my by UPS for months, I went out of my way to use other companies, even if it cost me more. After a couple of months, I finally ran into a situation where I had to use UPS. Can you guess what happened? That’s right, another package left on my front porch. I call the regional VP. Remind him who I am, and explain this is the first time I’ve had something delivered by UPS since the last time we talked, and they left it on my porch. The next words out of his mouth made me smile and decide I like this man. He said to me, “Well I guess that driver doesn’t want a job anymore.”

I should mention in the time that this happened I know that we had four different UPS drivers. The guy we have now is doing a great job, although I think he hates me. When I’ve been home when he makes a delivery he always looks like he’s not happy. The people that work on the depot know me on site. The regular girl that works the desk even has my address memorized.

I will note that I only detailed the important confrontations, there where others due to this spanning 9 months. To this day UPS is not allowed to leave anything at my house. I’ve even tried to work with them to not even try and deliver it, but to send me an e-mail notification. Apparently, their system is not that advanced yet.

I still have a special hatred of UPS and try to ship any other company when ever possible.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

But it tasted good!

Have you ever eaten something and later thought to yourself, “hmmm, I probably shouldn’t have eaten that?” Well I did that today, and I’m paying for it now.

This morning Boopie is sick yet again. He had the urge to ‘gurge and let it flow. Now before you go giving him too much sympathy, he gets sick all the time. He has taught himself to cough until he tosses his cookies. Why would he do this? It is psychological, he’s a hypochondriac. He comes by it honestly via his biological father. Therefore, when something is going on that he doesn’t want to do or deal with, he starts getting sick. No fever, no drain of energy, just blowing chunks, that’s how we can tell when it’s a fake illness and not a real one.

So this morning my good, kind, loving and understanding wife is dealing with Boopie while I’m in the kitchen making lunch for her and I as well as my breakfast. I don’t eat breakfast at home; I pack one and take it to work. I don’t like eating before 7:00 AM and I’m generally arriving at work around 6:30 AM. While in the midst of this, Boopie comes in and starts coughing until a Technicolor yawn pours forth from his mouth into the trash can and kitchen floor. Now I’m trying not to hurl, as I can NOT stomach the smell of vomit, be it someone else’s or my own. Boopie finishes spewing and goes and starts cleaning up the bile-goodness on the floor. I went back to making my breakfast. Now before you start to get too squeamish, no… no, I did not do what you are thinking. I did not eat anything with stomach chunkin’ in it.

So I get to work, start my daily routine. Run reports check out data from yesterday, etc, etc, etc. I start to eat my breakfast. I remember thinking, god this is good. I love Roast Beef with Blue Cheese. In fact, Anathematized and I had just been talking about steaks smothered in blue cheese last night.

I’m about to the end of my breakfast, last bite to be exact, when a thought crossed my mind. I made this meal, and I haven’t bought blue cheese in over 4 months. In fact, I haven’t bought dry blue cheese in over a year; I’ve only been getting it as salad dressing. I stop from taking the last bite. The delicious, yet now mysterious, taste of blue cheese is still in my mouth as I start to examine my breakfast.

I think to myself, “I have provolone, mozzarella, pepper jack, Monterey jack, Colby and Kraft slices at home. Why do I taste blue cheese?” I start poking around and I find this object. It’s white with black fuzzy spots and blue veins. I sniff it… a light goes on in my head. It’s a piece of provolone. MY PROVOLONE HAS GONE BAD AND I HAD EATEN MOSTLY TWO SLICES OF IT!

Now I’ve eaten many different foods, some exotic some just unusual. I’ve even eaten moldy food before. I know it won’t hurt me, but that doesn’t stop my brain from wondering if the extra penicillin will clear up that rash. I’m also still burping up the taste of blue cheese and roast beef, which is making me hungry. Maybe I’ll have to take my wife to Lone Star on lunch so I can get a Blue Cheese smothered steak.

Now when I get home tonight I have to decide if I’m going to throw out the provolone or use it in tomorrows breakfast… it did taste good.

I've already chartered the bus.

Your Deadly Sins

Lust: 100%

Envy: 80%

Wrath: 80%

Greed: 40%

Pride: 40%

Gluttony: 0%

Sloth: 0%

Chance You'll Go to Hell: 49%

You'll die from overexertion. *wink*

Found this over at Not Exactly Rocket Science. I had to take it, people tell me to go to hell daily so I want to see how I ranked.

I've joked with friends for years that I was going to hell and had chartered a bus to take them all with me. I added a couple of new passengers over the weekend. There are a handfull of seats left.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Sometimes the ugly guys get stalkers too!

Saturday, at the blogmeet, the topic of my stalker was brought up. I cannot remember how we got there, and I know I didn’t go into detail at the time, but I’ve been thinking about it since. Therefore, I am going to share this anecdote with all of you.

I had been working in Law Enforcement for a while when this lady in her mid 20’s came into the station wanting to file a police report about a stolen laptop computer. I was working the desk so I started gathering her information and sent a unit to the area to see if they just happened to see anyone with a laptop walking about. It was after midnight on a Thursday so there was little hope.

The unit I sent not only was able to locate the “stolen” laptop, but also recovered it intact. It was dumped under a bus bench next to a trashcan; we thought she was very lucky. The lady was very grateful for the return of her computer and said she wanted to send a thank you not to my supervisor for being so helpful. My nametag prominently displayed my name on my chest right over my “Serving Since” pin. Therefore, I didn’t see any harm in telling her my name, all she had to do was read it anyway.

Less then a week later I’m sitting at the desk when a strong odor hits me like a bucket of lead. I knew this smell, or at least one like it. It smelled like stripper. Anyone that has been to a strip club knows what I’m describing. The strippers seem to all wear the same perfume. I had been told on good authority that most of the clubs, at least in my area, use a perfume called Red or at least a knock off of it. Well this scent was like a cheap knock off of the knock off. It almost made my eyes start to water, but my nose burned.

I looked up and there is laptop lady. She was standing there, smiling and had a plate of cookies. I asked her if I could help her. She said she came to thank me for returning her laptop by giving me some cookies she baked. She also went into this diatribe about how she was going to send my supervisor a letter but forgot my name. Again, as part of my uniform I wear a nametag. This time I just smiled and pointed at it. She stuck around for 20 minutes just asking questions about police work and occasionally about my personal career, i.e. how long I worked, is this my first department, etc. She stuck around until we received an emergency call and I had to do my job. However, she hung around for 15 minutes before leaving.

This went on for about 2 weeks. She would show up at the station, bring me baked goods and talk to me. I thought she was lonely and was interested in me, and was trying to get me interested in her. I however was dating a lovely lady that would be my wife some day and had no interest in this over perfumed stripper smelling lady. Then she crossed the line. She said to me, “Do you live here? I tried to look you up in the phone book but I was unable to find you.”

My blood ran cold. (I also never ate another thing she baked and brought into the PD)

I advised her that I did not live local, that I commuted. I then lied and said I lived in a different city than I really did. I advised her that I had some paperwork to do and she had to leave. She left; I got the shift sergeant in filed paperwork regarding this lady. I contacted my phone company to make sure my name and number were still unlisted. The local police department took an informative report just in case something happened. Since nothing happened in their jurisdiction, they could do nothing at this time. Which I knew and understood, but I wanted to make sure they had her information on file just in case something did happen.

The lady kept coming back. Every time she would, I’d make sure another officer was there. I cannot get a restraining order since I work in a public building and she had yet to discover my home address nor phone number, not from a lack of trying. First, she figured out what my shift was, and then she figured out the hours that I worked. It didn’t take her long to find out what I drove. From that point, she tried following me a couple of times, never successfully. Although once I had a police escort in an unmarked car. When we thought we’d be able to nail her on something tangible. Which we were unsuccessful in doing.

Whenever my stalker came in, she would ask more and more personal questions. I just started lying to her. I think over time I told her I was happily married with six kids and one on the way (I was 25 at the time). I lived in a trailer next to a landfill, my wife used to be a model but gave it up to be with me and doesn’t regret it one bit. I contracted syphilis from a body cavity search that went horribly wrong. There were others, I just can’t remember them all. I was doing everything to drive her away.

Then it happened she stopped by to visit at the station and a 911 call came through, I was on the phone handling the emergency. She got pissed because I wasn’t paying attention to her and started screaming in the lobby. I ignored her and shut the partition class so it wouldn’t be as loud. I was wrapping up the call when she yelled, “Why won’t you pay attention to me? I went out of my way to meet you! I dumped my laptop next to that trashcan just so I could file a report. It could have really been stolen!!!” Silence… I pick up the radio and calmly broadcast, “32, 20 from PD” {acknowledgement} “32, 20 10-19. 10-96 at my 20 (Short for 10-20). Proceed 10-40” That translates into: “Units 32, 20 return to the station. There is a mentally disturbed individual at my location, proceed with no lights and sirens.”

Stalker lady now tries to back out of what she just said, saying I misunderstood what she said. I kept my ever so serious eye on her while she pounded on the glass begging me to listen to her. While she is doing that, I am rewinding one of the redundant taping systems we had for all radio and phone traffic in the station. Sure enough, there right on the end of the 911 call you can hear her yell out her confession. I’m dumping the recording onto an evidence tape when units 32 and 20 arrive. They where familiar with her so at first they thought it was just me trying to use them to get rid of her. That was until I slapped her with a charge of filing a false police report. They arrested, booked and transported her on filing a false police report, interfering with a police investigation, obstruction of justice and interfering with an officer in the performance of their duty. I know that the obstruction and interfering with a police investigation where dropped in a plea bargain.

I never saw her again after that. I think she finally got the message.