Thursday, December 23, 2010

Christmas Shopping - New vs Used

I'm going to go ahead and put a question out there and see if anyone has a good answer. Why is it that when it comes to buying someone a present it is somewhat of a taboo to get them something that is pre-used? Why do we feel the obligation to buy them something brand new when we can get them something used that is just as good or better for a much more reasonable price? Where did this way of thinking come from? Why shouldn't I buy someone a pre-used video game instead a brand new one if it is half the price? Why do we think this way? Whose fault is this wasteful and prideful mindset?

Friday, November 26, 2010

Top Ten Best/Worst Times to Fart

I'm sure that this list will be incredibly helpful for everyone out there when faced with the question, "Should I fart now?" After all, there are good times to fart and there are bad times to fart.

Special thanks to my sisters Grace and Hope, my Mom, and my aunt Lynda, who just happened to call when we were writing this list.

Top 10 Best Times to Fart
10. When sitting next to a large dog
9. When exiting an elevator
8. When touring a cheese factory
7. While socializing with a group of Senior Citizens at a retirement home
6. When taking out the trash
5. When holding a baby
4. While lounging in a Jacuzzi
3. When walking past a restroom that is in use
2. While standing in a large crowd of people
1. When you are all by yourself sitting in a wide open field

Top 10 Worst Times to Fart
10. As the bride walks in at a wedding
9. Standing in a crowded Elevator
8. Sitting in a helicopter
7. During the eulogy at a funeral
6. Doing the back float in a swimming pool
5. During confession
4. While slow dancing at your Senior Prom
3. While proposing to your girlfriend (or while being proposed to)
2. When hiding from the police under your bed
1. Anywhere where people can smell and or hear it

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

A Bad Day

Monday was a bad day. It started off bad and continued to get worse and worse. By the end of the day I was convinced that I was destined to die in a fiery wreck. Now I normally a very optimistic person but I must admit, for about 30 minutes I became a pessimist.

I started off my day as I do every Monday by putting on my pants because going outside without pants on is a taboo in my neighborhood. That part went ok. The problems started when I got in my car to go thrifting. A mile and a half up the road my tire blew. I went to change it when I realized that my spare was flat as well. I used my magical cell phone to call for help but to no avail. So, I walked home. I got my van, picked up my spare and took it to get air. But, of course, the spare had a bent rim and wouldn't hold air. So, I got a new tire. I put it on and then attempted to start my car. Only problem is, my battery was dead. So, I tried to jump it. In the process of doing so I broke my jumper cables. So, I took my battery to have it charged but when I returned I was informed that it was bad. I got a new one and everything was good. That is until I took my cell phone out of my pocket only to discover that it had a busted screen. It had broken in my pocket. At some point that day I also found myself bleeding, I took the wrong exit when traveling to a place I have been a hundred times, spent an hour packaging something that I later found out was being picked up in person and went to the post office without all of my packages and had to go back home.

One friend told me that now I know what it feels like to be a normal human. Apparently I'm just not used to having a bad day. Five hours to change a flat tire seems excessive. And truthfully, I was fine with that. At least I got to take a walk, at least the battery and the tire went out at the same time and I got it out of the way, at least it didn't happen on Sunday night when I was driving 200 miles in the middle of nowhere, at least I was walking distance from my house, at least I have another vehicle, at least at least at least. But the cell phone breaking just put me over the edge. I coudn't think of anything possitive about that.

Today was better though, I made lots of money, didn't bother to get dressed until early evening, read a book, watched tv, and went back to living the charmed life that I'm used to. I guess one or two bad days a year is acceptable.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

...where dreams come true

Martin Luther King Jr. once said "I have a dream...." Well I also had a dream. It wasn't quite as meaningful and world changing as MLKs but it was still a pretty good dream. In fact, I had this dream on Tuesday night. In my dream my friend Chris bought me the biggest breakfast sandwich that I had ever seen. Ordinarily breakfast sandwiches are a bit on the small side. In my dream the breakfast sandwich rivaled the Big Mac, it was a BSOUS, a Breakfast Sandwich Of Unusual Size.

If facebook had been around when MLK made his famous speech he could have saved himself some time and just did what I did with my dream. I posted it as my status on facebook.* And being the Santa Clause of facebook Chris offered to make my dream come true. So, Thursday morning at 7am we met at an undisclosed location, ok it was McDonalds, to assemble the biggest breakfast sandwich either of us had ever seen. And let me tell you, it was huge. The people at the surrounding tables laughed and doubted my ability to eat it because it was also the biggest breakfast sandwich that they had ever seen. And these people were pretty old and had most likely experienced many more breakfast sandwich than I have. Composed of two McGridles and a McMuffin, the sandwich towered to an astounding height of over 6 inches tall. Luckily I, like the anaconda, am able to dislocate my lower jaw in order to eat giant breakfast sandwiches. The deed was done, the sandwich was eaten, and my dream had come to fruition. Delhi, where dreams come true.*

*facebook limits status updates to 420 characters so MLKs 9,115 character speech probably couldn't have been consolidated enough to fit.
*Delhi (Del-high) is the name of the town where the McDonalds was located. My theory is that it was originally founded by an Indian family from Delhi but they were driven out by a bunch of rednecks who could pronounce the name properly.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Aware of What?

Perhaps I missing something obvious or maybe I'm just dumb. I don't understand breast cancer awareness. I don't want to sound insensitive here. I've had both family and friends who have suffered from this terrible disease. It's terrible and preventable, kind of. But what exactly are all of these dumb facebook updates and photo changes? How does posting your bra color or changing your profile pictures color to pink help anything? What exactly is that supposed to make people aware of? Have you ever brought breast cancer up in a conversation and the person said, "Breast cancer, what is that, I'm not aware of what breast cancer is. I wish that someone would have made me aware of this serious issue by posting their bra color." Here's my theory on the matter. People do all of these borderline obnoxious "awareness" things because it makes them feel good about themselves without actually doing anything at all. It cost nothing, there is zero sacrifice and yet, somehow, you feel like you've done something noble. And yes, I realize that I may be being a jerk here. Sorry, I'm aware.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Security Cameras that I'm not supposed to play with

Have you ever wondered if you could remotely access random security cameras via the internet? No, huh, ok. Well if you did than just search inurl:/view.shtml on google. Here are some of the ones I found.

If you like cows...

awwww, puppy dogs

or maybe take a trip to Italy

or a hallway in Utah Vally University (ok, I admit, the cows sound more interesting)

how about boats

ok, I'm going to admit it right now, the content of this camera makes Utah look fun but this one is fun because you can control it remotely. I wonder at what point the owner of this camera is going to realize that people are moving it ha ha.

um I don't know where this is but they have snow

Monday, October 11, 2010

Dip Chip Ratio

I am a big believer in the proper chip to dip ratio. I have observed hundreds of people dipping chips and have come to the conclusion that most people are doing it incorrectly. After years of research I have discovered that the proper dip to chip ratio is 1 to 4. Some people, however, refuse to conform to propper dip to chip ratios. The worse offenders are of course those whose dip to chip ratio is 2 to 1, twice as much dip as chip. That is what I call greedy dipping. This always leaves you with half a bag of chips and no dip. There are of course those on the other end of the spectrum whose ratio is 1 to 10, slim dippers. Slim dippers are those who barely scrape the surface. They end up with a mouth full of chip. A room full of slim dippers requires twice as many chips. I think the only solution to this problem is education. People need to be aware of the proper dip to chip ratio. Please, do your part in educating your friends to end this serious problem. Only you can prevent incorrect dip to chip ratios.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010


I remember getting my first chess set for Christmas. My parents bought it for me and I thought it was was just so cool. Every piece was hand carved in some far off exotic country and because of this the pieces weren't quite consistent. Some of the pawns were a bit chubbier than others and some of the knights were a bit taller. Every piece was unique and I've always been a big fan of unique.

My Dad taught me how to play but even then he never let me win. He did, however, give me do overs. I can remember him asking me "Are you sure you want to move that piece there? I'll let you take it back if you want." My Dad called it playing a friendly game. There's something special about the game of chess and there's something even more special about teaching a kid how to play.

On Sunday I got to teach Alexis and Myra how to play. To me there's just something magical about the entire process. It's so cool to see a child work through the logic in their head. "You could move there," I would say, "but look around, what do you think I'll do next?" Their eyes light up and they see, they understand the game. I get to be the one teach them the skills that have been around for 1400 years. And then, and then I beat them.


Sunday, October 3, 2010

Recipe for Pain

I don't normally post recipes on my blog. That really seems like a topic better left to the experts. People like Ryan However, I decided to make an exception this one time.

Pain Sandwich

You will need
2 Italian Sausages
6 Pieces of bread
3 Tablespoons of Canola Oil
1 Large Onion sliced
1 Green Bell Pepper sliced
1 Red Pepper sliced
1 Serrano Pepper
2 Jalapeno Peppers sliced
2 Habanero Peppers chopped

Take all of that stuff and fry it up. Ok, wait don't fry the bread but fry everything else. Then put all of that stuff on the bread wait an hour or two and then keel over in pain.

I ate two of these sandwiches on Friday and felt like death afterwords. I was laying on the couch watching tv curled up in pain. And then on Friday I was hungry, I had leftovers, so I did it again. Strangely enough this time it was also torturous afterwords. The burning of my stomachs lining was hard to ignore. And here I am again today, on Sunday, thinking that I would like to try just one more sandwich. I know it's a terrible idea but it just taste so good.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Responsiblity - What's That

Once upon a time there lived five friends. These friends were like any other group of friends. On the weekends they would hang out. Sometimes for fun they would go sheep tipping and occasionally, when they were feeling really crazy and the moon was full, they would throw off their tunics and see who could float the longest in the dead sea. But then one day something terrible happened. Friend number five got a terrible disease and lost the ability to walk. This was very unfortunate and made sheep tipping quite impossible.

But then one day friend number two and friend number three overheard some great news. There was a man named Jesus in town and he could heal the sick. So friends number one through four put friend number five on a cot and they hauled his fat butt to the house where Jesus was speaking. Friend number two kept making fat jokes while friend number three kept complaining that he was going to get a hernia. Fortunately friend number one was the sensible one and told them to both shut their mouths. Unfortunately when they got to were Jesus was the house was full. Friend number four suggested that perhaps they could climb up on the roof and dig a hole to lower friend number five down. But friend number one, being the sensible one, reminded them that that would be irresponsible. After all, they didn't know the owner of the house and what if they accidentally dropped the poor guy on his head. It would kill him and that would be counterproductive. That being said, they hauled their friends fat butt home and he died a few years later.

No wait, that's the wrong ending. They decided that they didn't care if it was the responsible thing to do and they put dug a big hole in a strangers roof and lowered their friend down on a ghetto rigged cot and Jesus healed him.

Think about it. Is it responsible to put a giant hole in a strangers roof? That's vandalism. Is it responsible to ghetto rig a cot with ropes and lower a disabled man down ten feet? That's reckless endangerment. God does not always require us to do the responsible thing. He requires us to do the right thing.

*the story I just told may or may not be completely Biblicaly accurate but forget about that and watch some MXPX

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Do you Flinch Back?

Your answer to this question will determine your level of happiness in life. What do you do when someone flinches at you? Do you flinch back? Do you sock them in the face? Do you threaten them? Do you curse at them? Do you ask them what's wrong? Do you walk away? Do you smile? Do you ignore them? What do you do?

"I'm talking to these little white girls." she yelled across the parking lot to another parent. "Little white girls," it hardly seemed like an appropriate way to refer to someone else kids. We were at the park and some drama had transpired between my, um, white girls, and some other, um, white girls. The drama was a clear case of he said she said with a heaping dose of kids being kids. It was silly.

"Are these girls with you?" the lady asked me angrily from across the playground.
"Yes" I replied.
"Well this little girl said she was going to slap my little girl and I ain't gonna let no one slap my girl."
"Don't worry," I reassured, "I don't let the kids slap each other. I'm watching."

I didn't bother to get up or raise my voice. My tone was clear and consistent. My calm demeanor seemed to catch her off guard. She wanted a fight, an argument, a chance to yell. Not knowing how to react she took her kids and stormed off.

"Did you hear her call us little white girls?"
"Yea I did. I mean, you are white you know?"
"She's racist."
"Maybe," I replied, "But it doesn't matter. It's best just to ignore people like that. Take a few deep breaths and go have fun."

I think that is good advice for life. Take a few deep breaths and go have fun. If you ignore the stupid people, the angry people, and the people who are just looking for a fight, your life will be much happier. Don't flinch back.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

My Life in a Seinfeld Episode

I'm a huge Seinfeld fan which makes sense considering it it is one of the greatest sitcoms in the history of television. In my mind nearly every situation in life somehow relates to an episode of Seinfeld. I've even come to realize that I have conversations that sound like they came straight off of a stolen script. For instance, what is the proper placement of the second button on a shirt? I've had that conversation more than once. Sometimes I believe my life may just be an un-aired episode.

Now, however, it's gone too far. If you are a fan of Seinfeld than as soon as I say this next sentence you are going to know exactly what I'm talking about. The other week I sold a guy a used wheelchair. Ok, now your mind has started to wonder and your thinking about the episode where Kramer gives the lady a used wheel chair and she looses her breaks and, well, it didn't go well. Ok, stop thinking about that and keep reading. The guy I sold the wheel chair to text messaged me tonight to tell me that something broke on the chair that I sold him and it rolled right over him. Oh snap, that's not good. Well, the guy was fine and he said he still loves the chair. But still, my first thought, "Oh no, I'm in a Seinfeld episode!" I'm just glad that this guy is both very nice, and lives very very far away.

Friday, August 6, 2010

One Too Many...

I went to the Delhi Skirt Game tonight. For those of you who are unfamiliar with this strange Westside tradition here is a short explanation. A couple of thousand Westsiders go to the park and watch grown men dressed up as women play a game of baseball. Then there are fireworks. It's a charity event. Now that I've got that out of the way I can get to the heart of this blog and that is alcohol abuse.

I was sitting next to a good friend of mine who was talking to one of his friends little girls. She was around 8 and was obviously upset. "I want to go home"
"Why do you want to go home?" my friend asked her.
"Because my mom is drunk and she has already gotten two guys numbers."

When I heard this my heart sunk. So many parents think that their use of alcohol has nothing to do with their children. They believe that somehow, their being an adult is an excuse to model bad, addictive, and often destructive behavior in front of their kids. If you think that your drinking has no affect on your children, think again. Let me assure you, your kids are watching you and your behavior affects them on a level that you may never completely be aware of. A drunk role model is a bad role model. What kind of role model are you?

Thursday, August 5, 2010

The Story of the Dumb Spider

There is a spider who lives at my house. He doesn't bite me so I leave him alone. Everyday the spider builds a web. He puts hours of work into his web until he gets it just right. But then, everyday, I open my front door and I walk face first into his craftsmanship, tearing it to pieces. And as I walk away wiping the sticky strands from my face, I think. What is wrong with that spider? He certainly does not lack work ethic. Everyday the spider re-builds his web. A sloucher he is not. What the spider is lacking is intelligence. That spider is dumb as a rock. Why would you continue to re-build something that will inevitably be destroyed? Why does the spider not invest his time and energy in building a web where it will at least last more than 24 hours? That spider needs to work smarter not harder. But alas, he is but a stupid spider whose very days are numbered. He will continue to build his web in my front door and I will continue to destroy it with my face. And then one day the web will be gone and the spider will be dead and I will not miss him because he was nothing but a dump spider anyhow.

Monday, August 2, 2010

and Everyone Was Happy and Everything Worked

Have you ever experienced something that should have gone terribly wrong but somehow, despite the circumstances, worked out great? To me, this weekends kids church was a prime example of that very thing. First off though, let me assure you that I knew everything would turn out great from the beginning. But that's just how I am. It could just as well gone terribly wrong.

The first thing that went wrong started a while ago. The air conditioning in the Elementary kids church room died. The HVAC guy agreed with me that the entire system was worth it's weight in scrap metal and not too much more. This being said I set up a temporary kids church room in the churches main building. That turned out to be a bit more work than I had envisioned. Pretty much everything in life is like that though. But, alas, after wondering around the church for hours stealing... uh, borrowing things from various rooms, it was done, and it worked. Granted, instead of a puppet curtain I had some sort of drop cloth and instead of a projector screen I had a round table turned sideways on top of yet another table but it worked. It kind of looked futuristic in a ghetto rigged kind of way.

Saturday evening came and yet another problem arose, I had no adult helpers show up. Luckily though I had three 12 year olds volunteer to help and they took care of everything that needed to be done. And it worked, it worked well.

Then Sunday second service came and I had 30 kids. Normally there are video games, Foosball, air hockey, and pop shot to keep them entertained before the start of service. Today, being in a temporary location, all I had was a broom stick that I found in the corner of the room. So, we danced and did the limbo and I won, and they had fun, and I had fun and two six year old girls discovered that they had a lot in common and declared themselves to be best friends. They held hands and challenged me to a dance off, and they won. And then I once again had no adult helpers. Only this time I had only one 12 year old. So, she walked kids to the bathroom and, since I had no puppeteers I did the next best thing, ventriloquism. I guess I did a decent job of it because one of the kids asked me if I was doing the devils voice or he was really talking. I assured him that it was just a puppet and puppets can not talk of their own free will. Along with the ventriloquism, when I needed to talk to a character who was supposedly back stage, I would lean over the stage and use a different voice. And once again, somehow that worked and none of the kids pointed out the obvious that I was in fact talking to myself. And thankfully, before any more ventriloquism was required, help arrived and everything worked.

As I sat in the back of the room during the 10 minute movie portion of kids church I ate pancakes and was happy. And if your wondering why their were pancakes in the back of the room, well that's a different story. As if by some sort of miracle, only one of the 30 kids noticed that I was eating pancakes, just one little girl. And as she stood next to me I asked her if she wanted a bite and she said yes. So I gave her one and she was happy too. And everyone was happy and everything worked.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Dumb Trick #1034

I'm a big fan of dumb human tricks and world record holders. And, although I realize it is not normal behavior, I try my best to partake in such activities. For instance, eating an 8lb watermelon in an hour, lifting my body using just my thumbs, pulling a car with my hair, and now this. This is me drinking a bottle of water in 2 seconds. I'm still about a half a second off of the world record though.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

How to Make 80K a Year with only a High School Diploma

So, how can you make $80,000 a year straight out of high school? Cutting Grass? No. Working at McDonald's? Nope. Doing one of those work at home things? Nope not that either. Do you give up? The answer is sell drugs.

I was talking to a guy today, who for obvious reasons, will remain nameless. (Ok, ok, the real reason is I can't remember his name.) I'm not really sure how the subject came up but he decided to tell me how he, for many years, made a very lucrative living. Now, I enjoy being self employed. I'm not a big fan of having my time dictated to me by a boss. This guy, however, really didn't like having a boss. In fact, the only boss he ever had he punched in the face. Needless to say he lost that job. And thus began his career of being self employed. Now, he didn't have any benefits, unless you include free room and board that he got during his 4 year stint in prison, but never the less he did pretty well for himself. In fact, before he made a career shift, he was pulling in $300,000 a year.

"Look at these people. They work their a**s off just to make a living. Some of them are working just to pay their mortgage and will still lose their houses. Before I let that happen I would just go get a brick and make more money than these suckers make in a year. I won my house, cars, motorcycle. I'm not rich but I got everything I want. S**t, or I would just rob some place. You don't want to rob a bank though. They don't carry enough cash. What you want to do is rob a liquor store."

Now granted, most of you have not had a conversation like this before. We went from dealing drugs to knocking over liquor stores in a 3 minute conversation. And strangely, this all seemed lie a perfectly normal conversation to me. You see, everyone has at some time had some form of this conversation and that is, "What would you do for money?" Would you sell drugs? Would your rob a liquor store? Would you cheat on your taxes? Would you work 60 hours a week and not spend time with your family? Where do you draw the line?

Friday, July 23, 2010

Picking Up a Prostitute

When I get together with my family we talk, we talk a lot. And that is why I was leaving their house at 1am this morning. As I started to pull out of the driveway I could see a lady who had been walking down the street stop, turn, and wait. She was waiting for me, I just knew it. She either wanted money, a cigarette or a ride, or even more likely, all three. For a moment I considered going back inside the house and waiting for her to leave but then decided that that would be silly. Sure enough, as soon as I reached the end of the driveway she asked for a ride soon followed a request for a cigarette and three bucks. "How far?" I asked, "Just a few miles to Reading," she replied. I could smell her body spray from out the window.

"Yea, sure," I said, clearing my front seat of all the junk. She was sweating profusely like she had been doing some, um, hard work. That also explained the body spray. The overpowering smell filled my lungs and it was hard to breath. Her directions were a bit incomplete and we ended up sitting in a dark driveway. I couldn't help but to think that this would be a very inconvenient time to get robbed considering the fact that I had $600 cash in my back pocket from an eBay sale the day before.

She asked to use my phone so I handed it to her. She started every call by typing in *67 to keep them anonymous. The first few times she got no one. On the third try she had a conversation that went something like, "Do you have anyone for me on 9? Yea, I'm over hear on Reading. Ok." This is when I started to really realize the occupation of my passenger. I could only assume that she was calling her pimp. I asked for my phone back and she asked me to delete the numbers. I did and she asked to make one more call, to her mom. Yea, uh huh, her mom. I said ok but make it fast. After two more calls with no answers I revoked her phone privileges. She asked me if I had deleted the numbers and I assured her I would later.

"Ok, you can drop me off up the street." I was happy to be leaving that dark driveway. The visions of being knifed slowly left my head. I had only pulled in there because I had thought she was getting out. Up the street turned out to be a cheap motel. And mind you, she didn't want to be dropped off in front of the motel. She wanted to be dropped off in back of the motel. Ok, a little further, nope, she laughed nervously, a little further, not here, a little further. She was starting to get on my nerves. Finally we were at the exact right spot and she said thank you and proceeded to walk to, um, work I suppose. So, I guess you could say that last night, one of the Children's Pastors from the Vineyard Westside picked up a prostitute. And I guess that would technically be an accurate statement. However, if you should choose to say that please feel free to share the rest of the story just as I have shared it with you.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

eBay Policy

eBay's policy on dealing with their sellers is simple. Your not allowed to talk to anyone who can make a decision. Sure, you can talk to their support team via live chat all day. You can even talk to them on the phone if you can find their phone number that is. It exist but is buried deeper than Jimmy Hoffa's body. Ask to speak to a manager and they will give you this gem "Our managers don't talk via live chat but you can email them." "How about I call them?" Same cookie cutter answer. To make matters worse the email address that they give you is a generic one. Can you imagine getting that response from a physical company with a store front, customer service representatives that can't make decision and managers that can't be contacted? Ok, well how about you tell me what's wrong. "I'm sorry, I'm not allowed to share that information with you."

Of course your not, that would be convenient. This all works perfectly with their policy of not replying to an email for 72 hours. I think eBay's policy regarding how they deal with seller can be summarized in this sentence, "I'm big and your small, ne ne ne ne boo boo."

Friday, May 28, 2010

Back Where I Started

My life, as my dad calls it, of being a horse trader started around 10 years ago. I was 19 years old and my mom introduced me to the grand world of auctions. Soon after my brother, being a minor, illegally set up his own eBay account and my life of buying and selling was on it's way. For years my brother and I would go to the Goodwill auction, twice a week, every week. Most of the people who attended knew each other, a lot of them were friends. I met a lot of nice people there, people that I saw twice a week, every week. And then, I got a job.

Tuesday, after being absent for six years, I returned. I walked in and pulled out my wallet. As I started to pull out my ID the auctioneer looked at me and asked, "What's that for."

I replied, "I need a number."

"Why" he asked, "it's 691, right."

He remembered, after all these years, he still remembered my number. As I walked around, people that I hadn't seen in many many years walked up to me and asked, "Where ya been?" What a funny question. Where have I been? I've been gone for 6 years but it seemed like only days, or perhaps weeks. "How is your brother doing?" they would ask. When I told them that he was in Italy they all said the same thing. "Wow, must be nice." One lady, presumably in her seventies, called me an Old Timer. "You were here before I was," she said. I knew I recognized you, we all did, all of us. So there I was. I was back where I started and it was a happy place to be.

Monday, May 3, 2010

My View on Money

Have you ever played Risk, the game of world conquest? For those of you who are unfamiliar with this classic game, here are the basics. You have an army. Your friends have armies. You build your armies by conquering and maintaining territories. The more you have the more you accumulate. Risk is about taking calculated risks. Taking on another army could mean great loss or great gain.

Money, I've come to realize that my perspective on money varies greatly from most peoples. When I look at my bank statements I see little Risk soldiers. It's a game that I'm trying to win. Sometimes I will look and see that my army has grown in size. Other times I will see that a 1000 soldiers are MIA. Where did they go? A bill, that means that the enemy has killed some of my soldiers. Hopefully not too many. I do realize that some soldiers have to die to maintain control. An investment, that means that my soldiers are temporarily separated from the main army but will hopefully be back soon with reinforcements. I'm continually moving sections of my army from place to place, fighting, trying to gain more soldiers. Now even though I realize that this game is impossible to win I still enjoy playing it.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Insight from Saturday Night

Insight from Saturday Night

- I don't know how old I look but I didn't get IDed at the bar.

- The later it gets, the drunker people get, the better they dance.
*correction, the more they dance

- I can't dance. If you take be by the arm I will come with you and move slightly but it hardly qualifies as dancing.

- I saw a group of about dozen girls wearing pink wigs. Is this considered normal behavior in Kentucky?

- If I drank (which I don't)I would probably dance more because I would fail to know how terrible I am.

- A girl named Britney and her boyfriend sat down next to me. Britney was a bit inebriated. She kept introducing me to her friends. I shook hands with one girl and she told me that I needed a firmer handshake or as she put it, "do it like a man." Burn. Drunk chick one Dan zero.

- There was a biker guy who thought he knew me. I think he was wrong.

- Daniele does not like me to cross my arms or cough on my hands. I coughing on your arm really the proper way to do it?

- Out of the hundreds of people that I saw I was the only person wearing a yellow t-shirt and I was only one of two people wearing the color yellow. What do people have against the color yellow?

- If you are a decent cover band who regularly plays at a popular local bar you will get groupie chicks. They won't all be good looking and they won't all be sober but they will be your groupies none the less.

- Most German girls are mean. (This is not my theory it's just what I was told)

- Water is free.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Doing Nothing

I don't do well with doing nothing. It is my preference to always have a rather full schedule. Sometimes I get so busy that I think that it would be nice to have a week free of teaching. Those are moments of temporary insanity. I am on day five of the first week in probably over six months in which I am not teaching or leading any classes. I don't have material to write, handouts to make, games to plan, and quite frankly I'm bored. Last week I broke a personal best by teaching/leading five classes in six days, three elementary, one 5th and 6th and one adult class. I wasn't planning on breaking a personal record, I was just blessed to have all of the opportunities fall in one weeks time. It was a lot of work, a lot of planning, it took a lot of time, and I loved it. In all honesty I'm probably just writing this blog because I'm bored. Just sitting around at home by myself drives me nuts. Just four more days and I get to teach again. Easter weekend, it's going to be awesome.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Status Updates by Ben Lane

WARNING: This Blog is rated PG-13

So my friend Ben sits around all day thinking of dumb (and sometimes brilliant) things to write as his status updates on facebook. Most of them are far to dirty to be published on my blog (90%). Here are a few that weren't filthy:

Just finished my first book yesterday.709 pages.................... Dang that was a lot of coloring!

[Error 404: User brain not found, try again later]

Men with words are like women with makeup,we either make ourselves look good or end up looking like clowns

What do you do if you see an endangered animal eating an endangered plant?

I just want to say being in a fake mafia is fine with me, having a fake farm is okay with me, even a fake zoo and fish aquarium.......... But when I keep getting invites that say "Here is 200 slices of key lime pie" or "tony whipped up extra fried chicken and wants you to have some" or "have some banana pudding". it pisses me off because I am fat and really want to eat all of that.

Please don't call me insane i prefer the term hilariously unique it makes me sound smarter!

Did you ever wonder if aliens secretly film people having sex, then make them into boring nature shows to show their kids on the Human Planet channel?

Never get into a food fight with cannibals

Apparently global warming will eventually kill over 6 million ppl. On a more serious note my snowman has just melted

The only time I have a problem with alcohol is when I spill it.

Why do they put designs on toilet paper?? Honestly, while someone is taking a c**p are they gonna look at the toilet paper and say OMG its a butterfly!?

Sunday, March 21, 2010

The Money Box

Believe it or not, before this last Saturday, I had never bought something from an antique mall. I've always found their prices to be inflated and most of their merchandise ordinary. When I saw this piece I just couldn't resist. It was neither expensive ($65) nor was it ordinary (I can't find any record of it's equal).

This is a church money box. It measures 12 inches tall, 8 inches wide and weighs a whopping 40lbs. It's built like a safe. Whoever built this thing was serious about the church not being robbed. The walls of the box are 1/4in of solid steel. The door is 1/2in thick and has two locks. Additionally this box was made to be screwed to the churches wall. That's some serious security.

Friday, March 5, 2010

What Are You Going to Pump With That

I buy and I sell, that's what I do. It's fun and I make decent money doing it. I've bought and sold just about everything. Dental equipment, pantyhose, blinking doll eyes, a Rolling Stones pinball machine, gold coins, an antique javlin and about 2000 other items. There is, however one item that I have never bought and sold. I see them listed on craigslist frequently but have never even ventured to check on their resale value. You see, whenever I buy something from someone they win undoubtedly ask me, "So, what are you going to do with that." I always try to beat around the bush to avoid telling them that I'm going to sell it for a lot more than I just paid them. But still, that is that one item. What would I say? Even if there is money to be maid, I'm just too embarrassed to buy and sell breast pumps.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

The Crush

If your on facebook for a long enough period of time you will undoubtedly stumble upon people that you forgot existed. I currently know a lot of people, hundreds for sure, perhaps thousands. But, how many people did I used to know? How many people have I forgotten about. Facebook is a good place for rediscovering those people. I have one friend who enjoys having old acquaintances send her friend request so that she can hit deny. I'm not quite that mean. Although that is funny.

Ok, ok, short story shorter. I was browsing an old friends pictures when I saw a comment by another person. The name sounded familiar so I mumbled it a few times to myself. When that didn't work I went to her profile. After staring at her face for a good two minutes I remembered. I went to church with this girl 18 years ago (give or take). Not only did I got to church with her I had a serious crush on her little sister. I have vivid memories of this. This was probably my first crush. So, I looked on facebook and found said girls profile and then I remembered. I remembered what it was like to be a little kid with a crush. I had totally forgotten what that feels like. It was so wonderfully terrifying. Of course I never told anyone that I had a crush on her. In fact if you are reading this than you are among the first to hear my confession. It must be fun to be a kid.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Pulling a Car with My Hair (Again)

So I pulled a car with my hair again. This is probably the last time I will ever do this unless I get paid. This time my friend Paul recorded it and the video is 100 times better than the last one that I had shot 5 years ago.

Man Pulls Car with Hair from Dan Thoms on Vimeo.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

The Scary Dream

Last night I had a dream and it was strange. Many of them are but this one was exceptionally strange and borderline horror movie. Unfortunately I do not remember all of the details but here is what I do remember. There were stone mouths on the sides of some walls. Imagine if you will a four foot tall vampire slash monster mouth, wide open and formed out of concrete. If you touched the mouths you were doomed to transform into a mouth. It took a few minutes but after you touched them you would disappeared and a mouth would appear. I remember seeing a wall with at least three of them, one above the other, and as I watched another mouth appeared. Now there was one cure, a solution. If you did in fact touch one of these gaping mouths you could go into this one particular house. The key to the cure was dirt. You needed to be in a place were there was at least six feet of dirt under you. And that is all I remember.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Valentines Day

My favorite thing about Valentines day is getting to buy those great Frisches kids meal coupons. I bought 24. That means I can take 24 kids out to eat, for free. Not all at once though. Even I can't handle that. My van isn't big enough. I also bought 96 bags of those little valentine candy hearts to give out in kids church. Other than those two things, I could care less.

You see, I'm single. If you ask me if I'm married, engaged or dating anyone I will say no. Most of my friends are married and most of them have kids. I want to be married and I want to have kids. The thing is though, I'm not all that worried about it. I rarely think about the fact that I'm single. My mind is occupied by too many other things, important things like ministry, spending time with friends and family, and of course finding ways to make more money. Sometimes I wonder if perhaps I should be more aggressive in my pursuit of the opposite sex. I have friends who are constantly looking for and constantly getting dates. To me that just sound expensive and time consuming. I'm not opposed to dating but I'm also not particularly interested in dating a different girl every month. That just sound stressful. Yea, I guess it could be fun but I have fun all the times. I don't need a date to do that. There's a fine line here. On the one hand, yes I guess I do need to be more aggressive and meet more single ladies. On the other hand I can't make that my number one priority. Will I ever be married, perhaps. Only time will tell. Until then though, happy valentines day to all of you in the blogger world.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

There Was But now There Isn't

Every once in a while I will see someone that I haven't seen in years. Sometimes it's on facebook other times its at the grocery store or at some other random location. Today, however, it was in the news. If I had to guess I would say that it's probably been 12 years since I've seen Nicole. I probably wouldn't have recognized her if I saw her walking down the street. When we were all young, her and her brothers were in the same youth group as me. It's weird because in my mind she is still 13. People don't age unless you see them get older, right? But now, now she's dead. She died on I-74 in a traffic accident yesterday. It's always weird to realize that you will never see someone again. Sure, it's been 12 years but I ran into her brother just last year. There was always that chance. There was but now there isn't. This makes me sad, 27 us too young.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Big Gears, Tiny Gears

I'm fairly positive that our conversation started before I was consciously a part of it. But sure enough, he was talking to me. "A five dollar check" he said. "Only five dollars." Wait, what are we talking about, I thought to myself. He was a middle aged black man, overweight and balding. The hair that he had left looked like it hadn't seen a shower in quite a few days. He was sitting on an exercise bike in the furniture department of St. Vincent DePauls and he was apparently talking to me. "I cashed that five dollar check and the people at the bank laughed at me. They took two dollars for cashing it so that only left me with three. I had a seven dollar, no wait, eight dollar check last week. They called me and told me that they needed me at work but they told me to go home after 30 minutes. The guy wrote me that check right then, five dollars."

Since we were apparently having a conversation I politely agreed. Five dollars is a rather small check but money is money so you have to cash it. Our conversation continued from there, like a mountain trail full of sudden twist and turns. Wait, what were we talking about again? Gears, we are talking about gears now. "I used to make gears at a factory in Chicago. They were big gears, heavy, some this tall." he motioned with his hands. "Some as big as this room. But at my new job I'm going to be making tiny gears, only this big. So small, like a quarter." he laughed, "so small, little tiny gears. It will be so easy"

"I'm getting fat but I eat healthy. Every other night I eat a can of vegetables and a baloney sandwich. Every other night I skip dinner and just drink beer." Huh, that doesn't sound too healthy I thought to myself. "A friend once told me that America makes you fat. Maybe that's your problem." I quipped.

"Someday I'm going to find that special girl to marry. The Bible says it ain't right just to be sleeping with people. That's what people do now a days you know? They go on a date and then they sleep together. That ain't right." I nodded in agreement, "Nope, that isn't right." I guess we are talking about marriage now.

And the conversation went on, never knowing what surprises lie in the next sentance. Ah ha, my chance. He had cornered another stranger and was asking their advice on the exercise bike that he had been sitting on for the last 20 minutes. He was getting fat and since his diet was healthy he figured it must be his lack of exercise."Hey, what if I don't want to use my arms on this bike can I disengage thees things..." The stranger didn't know, and I had walked away, I had shopping to do.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

God Bless America?

Every time I hear a story about Haiti my eyes tear up. I feel for them and I'm sad that any human would have to suffer like they are and like they have for so long. When I hear stories of American generosity I tear up. It makes me proud to know that our country is full of so many generous and caring people. It reminds me that being rich gives Americans the opportunity to help the rest of the world. But then it happens. I run into people that make me rue the day I became a Westsider. Facebook is good for that. I guess I was naive to think that everyone was for helping the helpless. I never though that I would read a statement like this one from a gentleman from Westwood:
"Haiti is the toilet of the earth. Mother nature was just trying to flush." or how about this one from a young man from Price Hill "help america first f**k everyone else!"

There was even a young lady from Western Hills who chimed in with "Yeah its sad that happened to them but its every man for himself or in this case country... Noone helped us on 9/11 or hurricane katrina we did it all ourselves..."

When I informed her that over 100 countries offered aid when Katrina hit she told me that she didn't care about statistics. Yea, statistics, who need them? People,who cares about people? The rest of the world can burn. God bless America?

Friday, January 15, 2010

7 Randoms

My Dad

My dad stopped by my work the other day just to show me this comic. He cut it out of the paper for me.

My eBay Account

My eBay account was partially suspended by eBay today. Dupont filed a claim agansit me because I illegally used the word freon in my auction. They aparently own the word freon. I did not know this and I bet you didn't either. eBays customer service is quite possibly the worst in the world.

My Emotions

Every time I hear about the people of Haiti on the news I tear up. I'm usually driving so I try not to cry. It's hard not to cry. They are people just like me.

My Country

Every time I hear about all that my country is doing to try to help Haiti I am proud. I think that we get a bad rap when it comes to world politics. Americans as a people and as a government do a lot and give a lot to help other nations.

My Snowman

I built this guy a couple of years ago in my parents front yard.

My Antique Photos

I think this girl is beautiful. Too bad she is dead.

My Hair

I pulled a car with my hair years ago. Yea, I really did.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Got to Have Goals

So here they are, my list of goals. I made a list of around 75 life goals last year and completed 15. Not too shabby if you ask me. This year I did a list of 50 (as did all of the guys in my life group) and plan to accomplish at least 25. Ryan, our fearless leader did on too and you can read that one here

1. Make $8,000 in online sales
2. Put railing in my hallway
3. Have a giant party
4. give away $1,000 at one time
5. Be less socially awkward
6. Go on a date
7. Get 12 new people to come to church
8. Get 3 friends to join life groups
9. Bungee jump
10. Visit Africa
11. Be published
12. Fast for 48 hours
13. Enter a food eating contest
14. Read 4 books
15. cook 5 new dishes (new to me)
16. ride my bike once a week (weather permiting)
17. Visit South America
18. Be on TV
19. Go ice-skating
20. Break word record
21. average 200 kids a week in kids church
22. make a dessert from scratch
24. shoot a machine gun
25. go on safari
26. scuba dive
27. go to the top of the carew tower
28. build a piece of furniture
29. drink an espresso
30. have a meaningful job
31. go hunting
32. flip a car (buy and sell)
33. try a new type of meat
34. cliff dive
35. plant a garden and actually grow tomatoes worth eating
36. keep better business records
37. get 50 subscribers on my blog
38. be a roll model
39. get married
40. visit the Indian mounds
42. go ice-skating
43. get $500,000
44. have kids
45. be in a movie
46. get my dad to do something crazy fun
47. get 1,500 feedback on eBay
48. explore the abandoned subway tunnels
49 buy a pacman arcade unit
50. open a Roth IRA

Thursday, January 7, 2010

How Did you Find this Blog

I'm a bit of a statistics nerd. And like all blogger nerds I like to track my blog views and how people found my blog. I came to find that people have searched some, um, interesting things on google to end up here. Here are some of the searches that brought folks to my blog:

white people hats
weeble wobble making
single guys with minivans?
older ladys hitchhikers sexy
i wanna punch this person in my year
guanatur fala ingles
grandma with piercings
evangelical "dan thoms"
dandruff in mustache
cultural differences farting
blogspot my pierced nipples
cultural differences farting

Bob Can't Remember My Name

Let me introduce you to Bob. I met Bob on Monday in the same place that I meet lots of interesting people, the thrift store. He was looking at some Autobahn magazines in the book section when he looked at me and said the magic words, Antique Road Show. That will get my attention every time. He then proceeded to tell me his entire life story. Bob, or Big Bob as he's commonly known, is in his 60s, he is married and has a son, Little Bob. Bob has a problem though. Bob can't remember stuff. He tries real hard but his brain doesn't work like it used to. You can see in his eyes that he wants to remember. His hands move nervously, his eyes look up and he thinks. And then he apologizes because he just can't remember. In 2005 Bob wrecked his Harley. His head was crushed and his arm was torn off. He was in a coma for a long time. When he woke up they had already reattached his arm and fixed his head but now he can't remember stuff. That's probably why his name is written in marker on all his clothes. His eyes water up as he tells me, "I just can't remember, I try but I can't. This causes arguments with my wife. She's having a hard time with this. I don't like arguing. I can't even remember what it is we are arguing about." He wanted to remember my name and he was going to write it down but, well, he forgot.

Bob told me a lot of interesting things. For instance, he knew the original Barbie and Ken. No, not the dolls, the people that the dolls were named for. He was friends with the Mattel family. Bob used to collect hot wheels. He tells me that few years back he decided to sell off some of his collection and made $108,000 in three hours. He must have spent that money though because on Monday he only had $4 to spend. He bought a small wooden plaque for twenty-five cents and a pack of wooden train coasters for seventy-five. They were for a friend.

I saw Bob again today. He likes the thrift store. Sometimes he just comes and puts puzzles together. I guess it's therapeutic. He is also in a support group for people with serious brain damage. He didn't remember my name. This time he wrote it down. He didn't have any paper but it's on his hand in big blue letters, St Vincent Dan. "Dave?", "No my name is Dan. It's nice to see you again Bob."

Friday, January 1, 2010

The Water Was Cold - Understatement of the Year


"Shocking the circulatory system can produce a warm afterglow and a transcendental state that one literally needs to experience to fully understand."

What better way is there to start of a new year than with a quick swim? The sun was out and the air temperature was a brisk 20 degrees but with the winds it felt like 12. The water was a bit warmer measuring around 35 with a little ice around the beaches edge. Ah, the Polar Bear Plunge. Last year I missed it but this year I dived right in. After all, it was on my list of things to do. Now, I don't normally scream, I'm generally a rather quite guy. However, when I came up out of that water I let out a hearty scream, "ahhhhhhhhhh." Mind you, the average swimming pool temperature is around 81 degrees so to say that the water was cold would be quite the understatement. I must admit though, it was invigorating. When you come out of that water your heart rate speeds way up and your body goes into a temporary shock. My entire body felt instantly numb. Strangely, as I started to dry off, I didn't feel cold anymore. It was almost as if my body believed, even if for just a moment, that wet swimming trunks and no shirt were proper winter attire. I must say, doing the Polar Bear Plunge is a crazy thing to do and I have some very crazy friends. I give swimming in the freezing waters of Indiana a big two thumbs up.

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