Sunday, January 20, 2013

#140. or, my old oysters

  So, a while back we went to Costco. Like, before Christmas. Occasionally, when we go, and it's not all that often, they have that fish guy there. The one with the small plastic containers of pre-shelled oysters sitting in their frosty bed of ice.

  I really like oysters. Even though it's sort of a crap shoot whenever I have them, as to whether I'll come down with a screaming headache or not. But still, I like them enough to take the chance.......once in a while.

  Anyways, we had bought a small tub of the oysters last summer and I smoked them. On the BBQ,  not rolled in paper. Cause they're all, like moist and shit and impossible to light. They turned out really good, and so, when we were shopping, before Christmas, the oyster guy was there, so on the way past, I threw a small tub into our gigantic Costco shopping cart, as a treat to have over the holidays.

  Last week, I discovered that they were still sitting on the shelf in the fridge. Instantly, I flashed back and remembered that it was late when we got home after shopping, and we decided we would put them into the fridge overnight and deal with them properly in the morning. They had somehow gotten hidden behind that jar of strawberry/rhubarb jam with the masking tape that says 2011 on it.  I know that they're not good anymore, in fact, they seem to be taking on a disgusting milky hue. And while whole uncooked oysters are not one the most pleasing things to look at every time you open the fridge, whole uncooked oysters in a bath of partially, translucent, milky liquid is somewhat disturbing. Yet, now that I've been re-introduced to this tub of what is rapidly evolving into some sort of goo, every time I open the fridge, my eyes are drawn to it like it's a car wreck on the side of the road as I drive past, rubber-necking at 2 mph.

  I'm a little afraid to move them. Actually......the truth is, I'm afraid to even touch them. I worry that the contents may have eaten their way through the bottom of the container and fused itself to the shelf right next to the coffee creamer. I worry, that if I touch the container, or even look at it too hard, it may explode. Covering me and the fridge in a gooey mess, and guys in hazmat suits will come bursting through the door to package up our refrigerator in some bio-dome thing, and I keep getting disturbing visions of being sprayed down by a fire hose in a concrete room, while a dude with a bristly broom scrubs my private parts.

  I don't know why the toxic oysters give me the hebby-jeebies? I mean, there's a block of cheese in the drawer thing, that isn't the crisper, where we keep the cheese and some unused packets of Soya Sauce, from the Spring Sun Restaurant, that has a healthy growth of mold on it. (the cheese has the mold, not the restaurant) I don't have any problem cutting a chunk of mold off of the cheese as I cut cubes to put on my salad. But then, you need bacteria to make cheese so somewhere in my brain, I've probably convinced myself mold on cheese only makes it better. The oysters just seem wrong.

  So, for now, I only give the tub of oysters passing glances to let it know that I'm aware of it, while still giving it the healthy dose of respect that it deserves. But it knows that I'm watching it, and one day, very soon, I'll have to deal with those unpleasant, out of date, shellfish.

...............unless of course, if I leave it long enough that my wife takes care of it first, then I'm off the hook.

This week, I'm dipping my toe into the Yeah Write waters to see if I sink or swim. Regardless of the outcome, it should be fun.  

Friday, January 11, 2013

#139. or, Sun, Sand, and Snow

  I seem to live from one distraction to another. I mean, I do the thing I do. I try my best to do it well. It's just that I have a tendency to occasionally lose sight of the goal, and go bounding out across a field of lilies like a dog chasing a butterfly, flitting about in the breeze.

  My wife and I are still sleeping in the basement on the air mattress. Which has been WAY. TOO. LONG! To be fair, Christmas happened, and we were sick. But honestly I was supposed to be done with this by now, I have other projects that I need to move on to. I like doing the electrical stuff, but when it comes to doing anything with wood, even though my intentions are good, I'm pretty much just winging it. (take that as you will.)

  Something that occurred to me this week, is that I've been counting down the days to a holiday. A tropical vacation holiday. the sun!

  ........on miles of sandy beach!

  ........all inclusive!

  ........endless buffets!

   ........all you can drink, just for the asking!

  .........the holiday that we took last freaking year!

  This week, last year, we were vacationing in Mexico. It was glorious, and as much as I would love to, we just can't afford to travel someplace every year. That's just the way that it is. I know that. But somewhere, deep inside of me, probably right next to the portion of my brain filled with useless information, like memorized dialog from the original Star Trek series, the seed was planted that we might be able to go someplace this year.

  A seed that sprouted, and put out roots, that wound their way into my reasonable thought processes and despite my better judgement, casually suggested to me that we might actually be able to pull this off. Even this morning, I still looked at the discount vacation site. Trying to convince myself, I was being a wise shopper by considering going to one of the malaria infested, single star resorts, where you have to take a shift behind the bar, kill your own food, and do a rotation, being driven into the jungle on the back of a truck with a bag over your head, to harvest pot for some Colombian drug lord, under the supervision on a guy named Twitchy, with an eye patch and a machine gun,  just to get my kid in for free. My wife gave me a dirty look and refused to look at the resort pictures.

  Whether I like it or not, my brain wants me to be on vacation. The last three days, I've been putting the new laminate flooring down in our bedroom and it only dawned on me yesterday, that every time I would saw a piece of laminate, the smell of the flooring sawdust in the air has been remarkably similar to the aroma I get when I smoke some of my cigars. I'm not really sure if that speaks more to the quality of my cigars, or the flooring that we chose, but I seem to be longing for a palapa, a mojito, and an hour in the sun with a cigar.

  Rather than what I have now, which is a foot of snow, -20C,  laminate flooring dust, and so much sun deprivation that I'm beginning to resemble the snow outside my window.

  So I'm counting the days to my next target. 350 some odd days until we can travel to tropical paradise again.  I'm planning to live vicariously through the facebook travel pictures of my friends, as they jet off on wonderful holidays, to tide me over.

  ............until then, I have a sharpie and a new calender. I wonder if my wife will let me smoke a cigar in the house?

This week, I'll be joining up with the other Dudes at Dude Write, with this post. I encourage you to pop over and read what the guys bring to the table. You can get there by clicking on THIS LINK


Saturday, January 05, 2013

#138. or, Who's MacGyver?

 So, the other evening, we were sitting watching TV. But we weren't really watching. Because honestly, I can't seem to find anything that holds my attention on the TV anymore. And I think that's the case for most of our family, as more often than not, while we ARE there, and the TV is on, my wife is usually playing some sort of video card game, Little Son is on his ipod, (or new phone now) and I'm trying to catch up on missed blogs and commenting on my phone. (or new tablet now!)

  Anyways, I don't remember why, but on this particular evening, my wife and are are just chatting, as the TV plays in the foreground, and at some point in the conversation, I mention MacGyver. This prompts Little Son to look up from killing zombies on his ipod, or whatever the heck he's playing, and ask, "who's MacGyver?"

  OH. MY. GOD!

  Who's MacGyver? Are you kidding me? I know that I don't have to explain who MacGyver is to you, but if any of my kids has to ask, "who's MacGyver?", then I think that I may have possibly failed at being any sort of father figure to them.

  MacGyver is possibly the coolest, mulleted, TV character to exist. EVER! Even though the show ended over 20 years ago, he is permanently ingrained into our culture. Even today, if anyone finds a way to make something broken, work using things other than what you would use to fix that thing properly, it's considered MacGyver-ing it. And for a dude, it's like a badge of honour to be able to do that. MacGyver made duct tape, paper clips, and chewing gum into things greater than what they were originally intended to be. He's the reason that at almost 45 years old, I have a Swiss Army Knife in my pocket. And when I use that knife to do something like tighten the screw on a loose handle on a drawer or something, the MacGyver theme song plays in my head while I do it.

  But then, that might just be me. If I have to squint to see something off in the distance I still hear the, doot doot doot doot, Six Million Dollar Man, bionics are now operating, sound effect in my head. It used to be that way when I lifted something heavier than I had any business lifting as well. But, doot doot doot doot, CRICK!, ARRRGHHH, MY BACK!, is not all that manly. I try to avoid the heavy lifting now.

  I think that TV is pretty influential. When I was a kid, my dad and the neighbour put up our new TV antenna, which meant we got 3 channels instead of 2, and I got to see Star Trek for the first time. I probably spent 6 months walking around all stoic, quoting Mr. Spock. I'm not sure why, but those shows stirred my imagination and molded me, in a way, into who I am. I suppose its the same for the generation my kids are growing up in, If you ask them who Steve Austin is, they say he's a wrestler. To me Steve Austin will always be an astronaut/test pilot/bionic man.

  I worry for my kid. The popular shows today seem to be, Here Comes Honey Boo Boo, which I refuse to watch, or Duck Dynasty. Now I've never claimed to be anything but average. I need a calculator to do long division, and it takes me at least 6 months to read a novel. (which is more a time thing than an inability to read thing.) But in the portion of the Duck Dynasty episode that I did try to watch, it felt like my brain cells were beginning to liquefy, slide down through my nasal cavity and form on the corner of my mouth as drool. I just don't see the appeal of those shows.

  I am tempted to buy some episodes of McGyver to educate Little Son on how he should be proud to fix things in an "off the cuff, half-assed" manner. But I'm a bit scared, that if I watch an episode now, it may be completely idiotic, and the magic of MacGyver may be destroyed.

  ..........That being said, I did YouTube a clip from The Six Million Dollar man last night, and old Steve Austin still looks pretty manly with his hairy chest, doot doot dooting across a grassy field in shorty shorts and white knee high socks. Of course the Bionic Woman was running beside him, so she may have stolen the bulk of my attention.

This week, I'll be joining up with the other Dudes at Dude Write, with this post. I encourage you to pop over and read what the guys bring to the table. You can get there by clicking on THIS LINK

Just a note to add here. I'd like to thank the fellows at Dude for voting me into the Members only Diamond Club for this post for the week of 1-8-13. Thanks Guys!

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

#137. or, Anniversary give-away and snot

 When I left you last, just days before Christmas, I had planned to dive back into blogging with the ferocity of a dozen puppies, all competing to be the first one to spill the pillowy contents of a stuffed animal across the living room, at the same time. Then, I did what I've seemed to do most of the time here lately, which is pretty much nothing at all.

  We had a wonderful holiday planned. My wife had a number of days off, we wanted to have friends over, go shopping, and spend a good deal of quality time together. Then, just before Christmas, my wife got sick with a demon bug my rotten Little Son brought home from school. But because she has resistance to these things with superhero-like ability, she still managed to cook us up a magnificent holiday meal. But that pretty much did her in, and she had to bail on our annual, December 26th journey to see my relatives on my Mothers side. Which would have technically been our third belt loosening feast, as we had visited with my wife's sister and her husband on the 23rd. So, Little Son and I set off on the 26th, without her, as I began to feel the first effects of the nasty bug myself.  

  And, I've been pretty much incapacitated ever since.

  So I spent the last week wrapped up in a blanket on the couch, making my way through the Star Wars marathon on TV, as I suffered through coughing fits and a continuous string of Kleenex tissues, until my nose was raw, while a nagging migraine headache threatened to blow the right side of my head clean off.

  On the plus side, I think I wrote a brilliant post in my mind. Concocted in a combination of a cold-drug induced coma and terminal lack of sleep, only to have it all slip through my fingers, like snowflakes melting in my hand, when I fully woke. I'm pretty sure it was brilliant.

  So, my wife and I cancelled our plans to have friends over on New Years, and just stayed on the couch, sharing a box of tissues between us.

  Anyways, I need to follow up on my 1 year anniversary post give-away. I feel like I may have cheated some of you out of the opportunity to add a comment or two by not posting between Christmas and New Years. Sorry for that. But it's time to move on now and get on to new and wonderful things. Whatever they will be?

  AND THE WINNER IS.......(scientifically chosen by putting all of your names on tiny pieces of paper and having my son pick one out of a hat.)

Exactly like this.

 If you don't know Kait, you're missing out. While she doesn't blog herself, she is wonderfully supportive of bloggers and is in fact, a twitter sensation!  I'm certainly better for knowing her and for allowing me to be a part of her circle of friends. Congratulations Kait!

  Now, I realized after taking the picture of the hoodies that I was giving away, a good deal of those that comment here are in fact women, and perhaps the hoodies that I took pictures of might be hoodies that a guy might like to wear more than a woman? I'm not sure though. I went back and took pictures of a white one and a pink one to add to the choice, but for some reason, cannot find those. So this is what they look like:

Except, imagine there's a pink one and a white one as well.

 And finally, because I missed my year end and any sort of resolution post yesterday, and because I'm trying to be all efficient and shit, I'll try to tack that onto the end of this post.

  I'd like to be in better shape. But I always wish I was in better shape, so that's not really a resolution. I think I just want to improve my writing. Maybe come up with some type of better schedule to get to everyone and do a better job of commenting. But I think mostly, when I'm here, my hope is to improve my contributions. I've been reading back at what I've written over the last year, and I'd like to do some more posts like I started out with. Some more off the wall sort of stuff. I guess we'll see how that goes.

  Happy New Year everyone, I'm looking forward to 2013.