Thursday, October 09, 2008

MUM's Wisdom


Moms may be wise beyond their years or experience, and indeed mabe the thought originated with some great mother in some region of the world. Nonetheless, I think the chrysanthemum deserves a bit of recognition in its ability to brighten the fall just a bit more. Now that all the beautiful roses and tulips have long since lost there prowess, the mums take the stage. It is nice to consider that a plant that has had to take a back seat all summer can bring a smile when every other plant seems to be losing it gall to hold on. These miraculous flowers grow strong and hardy while everyone else is showing off, and when the world seems to be ready to sleep they enliven the yards of many.
I guess I was just thinking how important it is to accept that things all have their own time for a reason. Going back to a mother's saying, "Bloom where you are planted." Well mom I guess it is not just being willing to grow up and be strong where you are planted but being willing to gather strength and be patient until it is time to bloom. Each of us has our own struggles, joys, talents, and faults. Isn't it nice knowing that we are put here together to complement each other. No one person will continually have to carry the load in the back door. We each get to shine and to share those gifts that make us absolutely amazing at some point. It is just a matter of having courage and faith to not give up until it is our turn. And if courage seems in short supply, lean on someone who might just be in your life to help nourish your hope. Keep lifting your eyes, No one's shoes are that interesting, and just making it through another day is something to be proud of.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Thank Goodness For Helpers

Yes, I know that you all have been astonished and amazed be the feats of Dobson the dog. Yet I am amzed by how much of a friend and helper he is for me. For example, now that I have started working, there has been less time to keep the house clean. Dobson in an effort to help clean up will follow me around with his rag and make sure that while I am scrubbing with two hands I can still hold his rag and pull with my toes.
But most amazing is the fact that when little ones come to play He is always the one who finds the lost cards, blocks, and game pieces, when we sing the clean up song.I don't knwo If Brian taught him than or if we just have a very special dog but how cool.
I am never alone in the kitchen, as Dobson puts on his chef's hat and sits guarding me from any attacking utensils, while I whip up something. I love having a dancing partner for one of my many happy songs who will follow me around jumping and hopping knowing that sometimes you dance because the beat is too much to sit down to. Yeah for a dog who looses his toys cuddles, when you cry, and still chases fallen leaves and butterflies. The best things in life are truly free. Thank goodness that even when things start gettign even busier, I have a little reminder that there is always time to play tug a war with the rag.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Ode to 'Homemade"

Okay, so it is my brother's b-day and in talking to his sweet wife ( the inspiration of not only me writing but the topic itself) I discovered that she is baking him a wonderful birthday cake in the pirate theme. In the process, as all of us who have baked a cake know, these things don't always turn out as planned. In my own experience it has been some of my recipe flub-ups and needing to substitute an ingredient that I have become known for. In one instance I had a really fun bridal shower to prepare for and had put off making the last dish just a little too long. Needing a recipe in a jiffy and scurried onto my favorite recipe web site and prayed I could find something that might be nostalgic for the happy couple. To my dismay the recipe called for something I just didn't have on hand nor did I have the time to run and find. so thus the invention of my "Buckeye Recipe"
They have turned out to be my go to no bake quick recipe when everything seems to be riding around your heels recipe. I was happy that we just didn't have to take home left overs.
THIS is the the miracle of HOMEMADE, even if it doesn't look like much it has all the love and goodness in the world cramped in to every inch of goodness. I was reading a book about how Italians cook, and it cited in the introduction that the reason it tastes so good, is because real Italian food, no matter how long it takes to make, or what region of the country it originated is made with heart.
How cool is that! Any time you need something to be special, remember that it will turn out just fine and more often than not be seen for the simple gesture of appreciation, and love if it is given that tiny piece of your heart. I think that part goes into anything whether store bought hand crafted or passed down, when one gives a piece of life, whether it is everyday life or any other sort of life, it is one of the best gifts that can be received. I find that even dinner turns out better if I remember who I 'm serving and what they like, needs to be of some consideration. Thanks Laura for the inspiration.
Have a wonderful day.

Monday, May 19, 2008

All Moved In


So I know it has been a while since I updated...but I thought I would post the interior pics of our new place.....We are 95% moved in....just need to hang the pictures and some towel bars....that and we stil have no grass.....Anyway, click the link or the picture to see the fun:

http://picasaweb.google.com/unchman/HouseAllMovedIn

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Look what I can do...can you?

I just wanted to let you all see my new trick....Sorry to Kevin, who will now have to refresh the movie over and over for the rest of the weekend.

video

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Torturing the dog is fun to do...to do, to do, to do


This will only end in tears...I know that is what you are all thinking. But if you can stick around long enough to get to the end of the post, you can see Dobson's great adventure down the slide...I am so glad it is warming up here...50 degrees today!! If only our back yard wasn't a bog, we could get back to our agility training. The warmth usually means a few good things in my life.

1. I get to wash my own car....the hose has been lonely in the shed the last few months. And the cars are getting sick of Mikes Car Wash...and the never ending sand poured out on the streets to thaw the ice.

2. I get to shed my winter fat. No, I am not a bear, but for some reason come May I am usually hitting 240 lb, and by the end of the summer I am back to 215.

3. More area to torture the dog...No explanation needed.

4. The white whale gets to see the sun...(Referring of course to my stomach)

4. The most exciting part...It means we are getting ready to move!!!!

And without further delay:



video

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Tales of a Happy Dog: Part 3


Need I say more.....this is me marking my territory in St. Louis. I got to spend the whole weekend exploring my future home....Granted, they made me stay in the car while they went to church and the temple...but at least I got to go this time. I also was able to prevent myself from destroying the carpet at the hotel...and semi-didn't keep Brian and Rachel up all night barking at every small sound.

I was also able to explore our new house. The had done all the drywall, and were mostly done with the exterior. I even was allowed to go down the stairs all by myself. Life is good....here are some more pics of me!!!....and more pics of the house...

Monday, March 10, 2008

Updated House Photos!!!

We will have more this weekend...as we are going to st. louis!!! Link to Photos

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Tales of a Happy Dog: Part 2

Yes, I am indeed a happy dog today. Why you may ask?....because I got to teach a cooking class yesterday. Rachel may say that it was her class, but the pictures prove otherwise:Who is the only person looking at the camera?...that is right, it is me. Anyway, it was also the first time that we have had company that I have not mauled everyone as they come in. And as a reward for my good behavior (and successful Italian lesson), the Browns took me to the park and let me stick my head out the car window to eat the bugs.

The park was the greatest. Our sewage treatment plant here has been frozen over the last month and just finally thawed yesterday. This meant that there were all sorts of fun smells at the park, and the bums were no where to be found. Humans have no taste when it comes to smells. I also saw a really big train, skateboarders, and girl scouts selling cookies. (No dog biscuits though)

The final treat of the week. Brian finished finals on Tuesday and let me spend the rest of the week outside with him. We cleaned out the garage, took all the cans to the recycling center, and then ran around the church parking lot....Without a leash!!!! Plus, I just saw some pictures of our new house in St. Louis. They have put on the front doors. I even saw Brian looking at plans for a Dog House, to build in the back yard.

Happy days for Me....Dobson

Friday, February 29, 2008

Treasure


I know don't get too excited this is not aother post on the goodness of the profession of pirating and pillaging to earn one's living. Today I would like to divulge one of the world's best kept secrets that was discovered by many including a small fictional character named Matilda. In the dark, dreary ( col, for those of you not living in the sub-tropics of the US) winter a bright spot on the horizon is the local library.
One may wonder why this venue is the choicest beyond all others int eh winter, but let me explain. THe library is a WARM public place with more attractions than any theme park one could imagine. Best point there is no height requirement for entering this sanctuary from the cold. Therein the knowledge of the ages is contained for those seeking the wealth of man through reading. If you feel like learning a new language there are books and mind you audio tapes/ cds for the taking. If your kids need an enjoyable activity not only is there a section devoted to their interests but also story time, and activity days to foster the creative juices that might otherwise be expressed in hyperactive craziness. Even for those who don't want to read books there is a gamut of dvds to borrow. Furthermore if you haven't had time to subscribe to any magazine under the sun it is available for your perusal at tone of the convenient desks or over stuffed chairs.
The best part is this a resource to explore the inner self- no matter what area you might want to see if you have an active interest in you will be able to obtain some information whether over the internet, through the library exchange program, or from one of the many resources located on the shelves.
When entering the building one knows that they are embarking on a journey into another world guarded by a spectacled guard ensuring that no damage will be done to the revered atmosphere or the organization of the treasured, labeled and filed contents of the trove. THis may be intimidating to have someone watching over your ever move, but remember that behind the spectacles is a person who is simply trying to protect a resource that has no price. YES it is true if you are a careful person your access to this building is free of charge, and fee associated with mishap is minimal. SO please don't be one of those frustrating people at Barnes and Noble who gets three books then sits down to read all three without ever buying one. simply go to your local library, mine is literally a block away to the recent arrivals, and read your heart out.
The one down side to the library compared to Barnes and Nobles is that there is no snack bar, but if you check out a book, then the options for indulgence become unlimited at any of your family's favorite cafes, bakeries, or diners, thus ensuring that you won't spend $3 on the last stale chocolate chip cookie from the display case at a regular book store.
SO try it out, and if the librarian gives you a dirty look on your way in, give her a smile and head for the section of your choice, she is just jealous that you could read your books out of doors while she is shushing and filing for hours on end.
Rachel

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Tales of a Happy Dog: Part 1

For those of you looking forward to reading about my misery, I am sorry. This was a great week. It was so warm the first half of the week that Brian put me out on my rope for hours. I was able to get a head start at the weeds in the lawn (they are, after all, my enemy). And then even after it snowed they let me be out on my chain. I love playing in the snow.

But that is only the half of it. They took me to Petsmart to pick out a new rope (a replacement for the one they threw out last month.) So I picked out the best one I could find. You see, I have been having issues with the last few ropes and the evil tassels on the end of them. I like to tear them apart and spread the mess all over the house, but then the evil vacuum cleaner comes to the rescue. So this time, we got a rope made of polar fleece...nothing to chew, just lots to pull on. Maybe this will keep my enemy at bay.And finally, I invented a new game to play with the humans. It is called chase the puppy. Basically, they charge me, and then chase me all around the house. But when I turn around and growl......I get to chase them around the house, that is until I get them into a corner, at which time they chase me. Sometimes they will just just pretend to chase me, and then in my mad dash they will hide somewhere in the house. Then I get to use my nose to find them....Happy days for Dobson.

I do have one complaint for the week. Brian has started calling me fish head!!!

Your's Truly

Dobson

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Tales of a Disgruntled Dog: Part 4


I think the picture says it all. Brian got a new torture device. If only I had opposable thumbs, I would show him a thing or two about behaving. So I like to scratch the couch occasionally, is that really cause for fuss. At first I thought the had got me a new friend, you know, something innocent to chew on. Little did I know that I would be living every moment in fear of attack. So, if any of you have any ideas on what I can do to get back at them for this injustice, please let me know. I am open to suggestion...But I have already tried the following to no avail:
  1. Ate Rachel's new black shoes
  2. Shredded two books
  3. Torn up hotel room carpet
  4. Scratched the coffee table
  5. Thrown up on my bed
  6. Shed all over the house
  7. Spread toilet paper everywhere
  8. Barked at the neighbors
Please send help...Dobson


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Saturday, February 16, 2008

There is hope for communism

I understand that this blog has got me flagged by some FBI computer, and because of it, I will never be able to run for public office. But understand that I am a capitalist at heart, and 100% against communism. (Personally, I do not feel that most people are smart enough to get their pants on in the morning, why would I let them make all of my decisions) I think government's only right should be to protect me from all the crazies on the street, (that is, provide police, military, and courts) and that each bill signed into law is just another step towards socialism. (And now there are snipers on the neighbor's roof). Why do we not believe that the markets work themselves out.

But anyway, in the midst of my disgust for big government, I saw something that I liked. I was just recently reading one of my "tech nerd" news sources Slashdot, and came across the following headline China Bans Horror Movies. Wouldn't it be cool if the government had the ability to ban anything, like, lets say Stupid People. Of course it would be easy to determine who is stupid. I propose the following test:

1. Do you believe anything the current presidential candidates have promised will come to pass?

If no, proceed to question 2, If yes...You are Banned

2. Do you believe in God?

If yes, proceed to questions 3, If no...You are Damned (and banned...sorry)

3. Do you honestly believe we would be better in a system of socialized medicine?

If no, you get to stay, If yes...go move to Canada or Europe and leave us alone.

And while we are talking about banning things. The dog was just scratching at the couch and is now banned to his kennel.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Valentine's Day Tribute

Hi it's Rachel the evil half of Brian's mind, please accept my deepest apology for actually attempting blogging on such an important day but I feel the myths surrounding one of the greatest gifts of love exchanged at this time of year need to be compiled and laid to rest. So to put your minds at easy please know that if you didn't get jewelry for valentines day, do not fret if your beloved thought to get you chocolate for in Mayan society chocolate was literally worth its' weight in gold. FUrthmore if your honey thought that flowers were too conventional and got chocolate instead realize that he still got you a plant of sorts for cocoa does come from a bean that grows in a pod that grows on a tree. Thus, one can still assume that your sweetheart had your. growning relationship at heart.
If you think that your prince has some diabolical plot to ruin your health by feeding you chocolate remember all the studies that have been published of late regarding the anti-oxidents contained therein. What a sweet person to look after your heart. Furthermore, the great giver of chocolate wants to ensure that no matter what else happens that you are able to maintain a sunny disposition as to the known fact that the consumption fo chocolate does contribute to the release of serotonin, the "happy" neurotransmitter. THey are not looking to ruin your skin either as chocolate also has not been proven to cause acne, and of late has been added to many beauty products for it beneficial effects. FInally chocolate is much better for your teeth than gummie goodies and stick toffees that might have otherwise be wrapped foryour benefit so you know that the great giver of chocolate enjoys seeing your radiant smile.
Remember that chocolate comes in many forms for our many preferences. ie no matter how fickle, hormonal pregnant, or neurotic you are there is a richness of chocolate that can bring enjoyment into your life. For instance chocolate beginners can start with the sweet innocent white or milk, while veterans with deeper palates can indulge int eh rich joy of ganache, fudge, or my favorite dark chocolate. CHocolate is like the little black dress of desserts it goes with almost everything.
Lastly remember caffine is also found in chocolate soooo good for those running on low, yet not wanting to put the holiday to bed without a goodnight kiss.

So if you recieved the gift of chocolate for Valentines day, thank the one you love. If not enjoy some for the sake of the one you love. And if this a Feb 14th is your code for single awareness day get together with anyone and share in some serotonin boosting goodness.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Tales of a Disgruntled Dog: Part 3


Yep, this is me, hiding under the bed with my bone, patiently waiting for them to leave. What a week. Let's just say the Super bowl was nothing like I thought. It was 4 hours of running for my life. Not that I had a lack of new smells, or people to pull on my sock, but by the end of the night, I was pooped. Thursday night I got to go to the Kennel....my absolute favorite place. There were so many other dogs and I got taken on walks three times a day.

Anyway...I wanted to talk about the art of hiding a bone. It is particularly hard for me, being locked inside where there is no dirt. The trick is finding an area where I can either completely cover the bone or leave it completely exposed. My favorite spot is on the love sack. It works as follows, I jump up on the sack, dig a little to make a flap and place the bone in the hole. Finally, I can use my snout to push the flap over the bone. Like so:

video

Frustrating isn't it. Won't they let me outside? It is so fun when Rachel or Brian Sit on the sack and discover my bone, cause then I get to hide it again.

That just about says it all. I think am going to go find a shoe to destroy....

Dobson

Rootbeer Super Bowl Party


I know it has been a week now, but I thought I would just post some pictures from our super bowl party. Just imagine a dozen small children chasing the dog around for a few hours. In fact, the dog spent the rest of the week asleep under one of the coffee tables. I have had to do some editing of the photos...message me for details. Ironically, everyone left after the supposed game winning touchdown of the Patriots. Just goes to show you that it ain't over till the fat lady sings. And also, apparently if you tell a group of LDS MBA's to bring their favorite root beer, they all bring IBC. Is it (1) our constant struggle to be in the world but not of it, (2) our love for root beer in a glass, or (3) is it just all a coincidence? My vote is for number 2, but that may also be a direct result of 1.

Friday, February 08, 2008

Our quick trip to St. Louis


We just took an overnight trip to purchase the lighting for our house...much to our surprise. They have already completed the framing, exterior walls, and roof. Here is the link to the web album with the photos:
New House Pictures

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Tales of a Disgruntled Dog: Part 2


I think it will be customary for me to begin each week by airing my grievances, and let me tell you, the list is huge this week. Let me begin!
  1. Brian cut my toenails too short...ouch
  2. They changed my food, and my stomach has ached since
  3. It snowed yesterday....(Only bad because they won't let me out to play)
  4. Brian threw a snowball at me
  5. I had to hold "it" for 7 hours on Wednesday
  6. They turned on my enemy, the vacuum, three times
  7. I got stepped on
  8. I can no longer dig at the couch
  9. I was bathed twice, and brushed too many times to count...I am freakin molting...okay
  10. They threw away my favorite sock...and my big bone
As you can see, it has been an extra hard week for me. On a positive note, Tuesday morning they left the scriptures out again. This makes my 3rd time reading the Book of Mormon this year....How many of you can say that. Also, Brian let me help shovel the walks twice. (But he kept me tied to the garage door)

This week looks to be pretty uneventful, although I overheard Brian making kennel reservations for next week. Hopefully I can get them to change their minds. I want to go to St. Louis too. I am really excited for later today because the Browns are having friends over to watch something that they call the Super Bowl...I can't wait to see what food is inside it. Extra attention for me for the rest of the day.

Please send help.......Dobson

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Winning is over rated!


Most people have never seen my competitive side. However, put me into a good game of Mario Party, well, Mario anything, and it just may shock you. I turn from the adorable Brian that everyone loves, in to the scariest thing you will ever see. But this post has nothing to do with that, in fact, it has nothing to do with Jenga either. I just wanted you to all see how tall the tower was right before I lost to my wife the other night. And that is the issue I would like to address to you....the art of losing.

Any of my close friends would know that I will do almost anything for the story. For example, three years ago we had just finished the "Thanksgiving Rounds". We had literally cooked three thanksgiving dinners, and could not bear the thought of making our own. Because of that, we decided to enjoy a nice dinner out at....Chuck o Rama! I cannot even begin to tell the stories generated from being around "Buffet" folk on a family holiday. For the first time in a long time, I felt under dressed, and it was at a chuck o rama. But I digress!

For exampleThe first reason that I love to lose, is that no one questions the validity of the story. Or in other words, it is easier to lie. Am I right? Just think about it, anytime you hear some outlandish story with a happy ending, you think "Sure you did!" But if your story ends in tragedy, the audience is so stunned that you are telling them your failures, they assume the rest of the story to be true., I once picked up the 7-10 Splits in bowling....(All of you are going "yeah right") But if I would have said that one time I picked up 7-10 split, but I crossed the foul line so the stupid computer didn't count it......everyone is thinking...poor, poor Brian.

The second reason lies deep within my love for drama. The winners victory dance is considered vain and prideful, usually creating ill will towards the person. The losers dance is completely acceptable, and usually a lot more funny.

If all winning does is create unbelief and ill will, I choose to lose! That said, I did not choose to lose at Jenga last night. I had removed the final legal piece (Took me a good five minutes) and the stupid dog bumped the table as I was placing it on top. I was framed!!!!!!

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Tales of a Disgruntled Dog: Part 1



They are finally gone! I have been quietly observing Brian over the past few weeks, waiting for the perfect moment tell my story. I think they will not return for three hours, as has been customary every seven moons.

Let me just start with an introduction. Being an adopted puppy is no field of clovers. I was born on the first of April, 2007. My mother did not hang out with the best of crowds and I never new my dad. Although I am told he was the coolest thing in town. I am the youngest of seven, although at sight, one would never know we were all related. The mixed blood of my ancestors caused us to all look different.

Shortly after birth, my mother, my siblings and I were taken away from our home and placed in a foster home out in the countryside. Our first months were spent under the careful watch of a rottweiler named Butch. Our days were simple, we were released from the cage a few times a day to use the rest room and stretch our legs. Some days we would even take road trips to the doctor. But the life of ease was about to end. I remember, sometime in May, we took our normal road trip to the vet. But something was wrong. I was taken into a small cage, placed into the back of a car, and driven away from my family, never to see them again. It took me a while to get oriented to my surroundings, but I noticed the driver of the car had blond hair.........

So that is how it all got started. Since that day, life has never been as easy. Working for my food. Performing ridiculous tricks for just a crumb of jerky. Retrieving toys, only to get them tossed again. Ropes, kennels, and constant photographs....Someone help me! I will try to keep you all updated every week.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

House Construction Photos


The walls are going up on our house....Thought you would all like to see them!!!




Tuesday, January 22, 2008

PhD = Pile it Higher and Deeper (and I don't mean the books)

I just spent the last few hours drudging through a stack of research papers for my Tuesday evening class on Power, Politics, and the Hidden Agenda. What a load of crap. The first article tried to compare modern corporate leadership to the behavior of cavemen. The second was trying to convince the world that leadership is just like a theater performance. I do not even know how to respond to this. The obvious first response is "what do we really know about the social interactions of the cavemen?" Because I am pretty sure, that besides the Gieco spokesman, there exist no cavemen to interview. But then a light went on upstairs. Each of the dozen or so articles that I read have one thing in common. Each article is ended with a paragraph on all of the authors academic achievements. You know what I mean...the whole

"Doctor Brown is the chair of anagramic studies at Harvard (and it is always Harvard). He received his PhD in something retarded that no one cares about, and did postdoctoral work somewhere in Europe!"

In other words....a PhD gives you full license to make up whatever garbage you want, and we take it for fact. I mean, have any of you ever watched the history channel. They only interview 2 types of people, PhDs and Politicians. Just the fact that the press gives equal credence to both people should say enough.....Why do we put up with it.

First, I must admit, that I myself am a graduate student and will be receiving a Master's in Business this May. But I am mostly in it for the money (okay, maybe fully in it for the money). And who wouldn't be...two years of relatively interesting and stimulating courses, a lot of networking, plenty of golf, and then almost a guarantee that you will be making at least double what you could have done without it. I pity my friends in Dental school, or Medical School, who put themselves through hell for 10 years at the hope of someday getting a real paycheck, only to return half of it to the bank that financed their decade in wonderland and spend the other half on the malpractice insurance. Not to mention that by the time they are out, technology improvements have all but negated their learning. But where am I going....Phd, thats right.

Why is it that the more years you spend in school, the smarter it is assumed that you are? I know it seems trivial, but is it really the case, that the longer you avoid real life, the greater you must be at explaining it? I honestly ran into someone the other day that had just received his PhD in engineering and couldn't find a job. Instead of continuing his search, he just signed up for more classes. This is the kind of people we have telling us what is black and white. The vomit of the real world.

Now I know I am not being fair to all. There are indeed people out there with PhDs whom we should respect. Unfortunately for them, academia is ready to promote anyone with the ability to generate government grant dollars. Their degrees get trivialized.

I guess I am calling for a way for us to filter through the garbage. We need something outside of academia to certify and determine who is actually allowed to call it as it is. (And the US government isn't smart enough to handle the job)

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Arrgg

Arrggg!!!! For those of you who are clueless, tomorrow is the Official Pirate day. Now it is not my place to explain why the 21st of January gets this title, you will have to ask my brother Kevin, who owns the rights to the story. (I would give you his contact details, but I have fears of men in black suits throwing me into a van and interrogating me with fire hoses and electrodes)

In fact, it may be that my government employed brother has enough clout with his boss (The President) that he was able to declare Pirate Day a National Holiday this year. The skeptic would claim that perhaps it is due to MLK jr, but the informed know better.

So while we are on the topic, it became apparent to me the other day that my family is obsessed with "days". And pirate day is the most confusing of them all. For example, all Thursdays are informal pirate days, where one is allowed to growl and argg for no reason; September 19th is international talk like a pirate day; and the 21st is Pirate Day. It would be interesting to see what would happen when both January 21st and September 19th fall on Thursdays and we are short two pirate themed holidays. (unless of courseonly it so happens to be a leap year and the 29th of February falls on a Thursday)

There is also "random profanity" day, not to be confused with random "profanity day", which happens whenever you let a bad word slip. "Random Profanity" Day for some cosmic reason, also happens to fall on Thursday. (But it may shed a light on the common cliche "sailor's mouth") Now some people believe in coincidence. I am not one of them. Especially when you consider that I worked for a store that was only open on Thursday. But now I am getting off track.

Perhaps the most infamous of days in the Brown family is the dreaded "New Hat" day. This day happens few times in ones life and usually coincides with "Mom just gave me the worst haircut of my life" day. While it has been years since one has been declared, beware the clippers.

For any suggestions on future days, please respond below!!




Saturday, January 19, 2008

The Love of Costco

Let's call this one a tribute to Costco. In fact, I think that I am Costco's number one fan (along with Jonny Carinos, but that is another story for another time). What is it, that drives a man 90 minutes away to shop at a store...when an alternative (Sam's clubs) is just five miles down the road....The answer is simple, well maybe not so simple, but clearly intuitive....Let me explain:

I am very familiar with the concept of white trash. I have been called that term many times and just as frequent been told that they are "my people". I guess it comes with the turf when my summer jobs included working for a car dealership, a construction company, and a HUD property management firm (I have obviously seen and heard things that would embarrass sailors and make your children cry). So where is this going....well I am trying to build your confidence that I can, better than most, spot white trash when I see it. It is the whole "It takes one to know one" philosophy. If you do not have this superior ability, take a trip down to your local Walmart (the hive as I call it). This is the easiest place to identify white trash...everyone you see fits the bill. Honestly, one time I entered a Walmart in Columbus Indiana (I am white trash after all) and the pharmacy was a plywood constructed Kiosk in the middle of the store. The only thing more white trash than buying drugs from a wooden box, is going to the local supermarket to have taxes done (Also available at your local Walmart).

But this is not an advertisement for Walmart, as I am definitely not their number 1 fan (As opposed to Costco, Jonny Carinos, and 9 Beans), this is a grievance about Sam's Club. On a side note, West/Lafayette Indiana have about 90 thousand people and 3 Walmarts.

So when we moved here a few years ago we were upset to discover that the nearest Costco was in Indianapolis. But having just been in a massive car accident and literally losing all of our possessions, we needed stuff. Naively, we entered the local Sam's Club. Strangely enough, it looked like a costco, the goods were the same as a costco, even the shopping carts were over sized like costco. But many things were different, and here is why Sam's Club is not the same:

1. The staff at Sam's Club seems to be promoted straight from the nearest Walmart. You know the little survey you get on the credit card machine (Did your cashier greet you today?). If you don't, time to go experience it. Well it seems that all Walmart employees who receive a 90% or better get shipped off to Sam's Club. So instead of seeing the reserved, well kept, college students who staff the costco, you get stuck with the most energetic and friendly mutants drawn from the biggest pool of white trash in the city.

2. Costco customers are usually the "family" or "business" type folk, typically complementing their bulk purchases with the occasional $900 outside clock that provides both the temperature and your horoscope. Usually the Costco shopper is not counting pennies to see if he/she can have the slice of pizza from the diner. Sam's Club, on the other hand, is Walmart on steroids. The Sam's Club shopper has a wad of $20 bills that he/she just received from the local payday loan center, a case of beer, and a box of EasyMac (Dinner for the next two weeks).

3. Nothing good comes from a green and blue store. If you can prove me wrong, please do so.

So, to summarize, although I am white trash, I prefer not to smell my own kind, and therefore, prefer to drive to Costco.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Video of Dobson

Some tricks I have been teaching my dog!!
video

Thursday, January 17, 2008

I just started the first of my many future 4 day weekends today and have learned a few interesting facts:

1. The dog does not just sit around the house all day and look out the window. In fact he spends the day rearranging the furniture and burying various items of clothing under the couch cushions and blankets. Then, as if not satisfied with the mess he has made, he starts the process all over again. Every time I try to clean up the mess he looks at me as if to say "Don't you have somewhere else to be?"

2. It is scary how much information can be gathered about you in a few days. I just received the contents of the background check that my future employer performed. We are talking degrees, past salaries, job duties, criminal history (not that it was too exciting), insurance claims, and even whether or not I was indeed alive.

3. There is only so much web surfing you can do, as evidenced by the fact that I am writing this blog instead of checking out the latest in geekdom at Gizmodo, Slashdot and Engadget. (And just to note, the closest thing that spell check can find for geekdom is sheikdom.)

4. The first year of the MBA program wasn't as bad as we all thought it was. At least I did not have to keep myself busy by checking my Amazon order every 3 hours to make sure I didn't miss the delivery truck while I was on the toilet.

5. No matter how many times I refresh, Google maps will not have updated St. Louis to show the construction of our new house. I will just have to be patient and hope that our Realtor keeps me updated on the process. (Here is a picture of the progress)