Monday, June 23, 2008

Winter Can Come Now

How did I spend the Summer Solstice? Why stacking wood for the winter of course. We got our delivery of wood Saturday morning (and by delivery I mean the guy dumps about 3,000 lbs of wood onto the driveway and then leaves with your money) and I set to stacking the mofos.



After (wanna stain my deck for me?)

Unfortunately for me the delivery came at 11 a.m. so by the time I had finished the stacking, it was about 850 °F in the driveway. I was a bit sweaty and, well, revolting. But the wood is all stacked and ready to heat my house this winter.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Formal Shorts are Bullshit

Hey there fellows! Do you wish you could wear your shorts to work (if you CAN wear your shorts to work, then you're dead to me...)? Would you even go so far as to wear fancier shorts than the shitty crop of paint-stained and slightly fraying cargo-ish shorts you currently own? Would you promise to never wear the cut-offs that are in the back of your drawer again (seriously, stop wearing those)? Well, too bad. You can't. You must wear long pants to work because that's the frickin' rule.

But not so for the ladies. They get to wear "formal shorts". They also get to wear skirts and sundresses too but I'll concede those. Don't even get me started on the flip-flop issue. It's like they're taunting me with their comfort. I do get to wear sneakers but ONLY on Fridays. I'm pretty sure that no one would really give a hoot if I did wear my sneakers on say, a Tuesday or whatever but officially I can't unless it is a Friday. But I've seen (and heard) flip flops every day of the week during the summer months.

Hers are a-ok! His are pure evil and will bring down corporate America!

See? His are just as formal and business-ready as hers are! What the hell is the problem? I will say that he should really should cool it with the pocket pool and the giant leather wrist band for (I assume) his watch is unnecessary but other than that, I don't see much difference.

5-Song Shuffle

1. The Walkmen - New Year's Eve
2. The Smiths - The One I Want I Can't Have
3. Danger Doom - No Names
4. Buzzcocks - Oh Shit
5. Death From Above 1979 - Black History Month

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

I Wanna Live in Maine Please

This past weekend The Wiff and I made our way up to Maine. We were invited up by Andy and Nerissa to stay at their campsite. Actually we had been invited up Memorial Day weekend but the Volvo only wanted to go as far as Saco. Luckily we were able to limp the old girl home and get the repairs made and this time the car worked perfectly. Since it was predicted to be 1,000 degrees here in Boston we were psyched to get away from all the asphalt.

Since gas is so expensive I drive like a little old man with a hat. Not to mention that the Volvo is about as aerodynamic as a armoire so driving fast just kills the gas mileage. So the trip took longer than I'm used to. But, so much less stressful. Try it next time you go on the highway for a trip. Just go slow in the far right lane and you'll be amazed at how much more relaxed you'll feel. At least I did.

We got to the camp, unloaded our crap and immediately got stung to death by mosquitoes. Why does nature have to be full of bugs? They had some bug spray that was labeled "Family Scent" so we doused ourselves in that. We all smelled like family (tip of the hat to Nerissa since that's her joke). Andy and I decided to go to The Liberal Cup and have a beer or two. They have special handmade ceramic cups for the regulars (members of the Mug Club). The bartender sees you come in, grabs your special mug which is hanging in the bar with this little contraption and fills it with the brew of your choice. Marky want. I need to move here.

Back at the campsite it must have been frickin' breeding season or something for every species of frog that weekend because those little dudes were making a huge racket. I could ignore it for a little while (sort of letting it become white noise) but there was a few of them on our side of the stream and it sounded like they were in the trees. I grabbed my flashlight and walked into the woods behind the cabin and waited for the chirp so I could pinpoint it. After a little bit I was able to find a little gray tree frog about 2 1/2 inches long. Holy crap that lil' guy could make noise.

The next morning we went into town to the A1 Diner and on the drive back we came across a family of woodchucks or gophers or something (look, I'm from the city. All small animals are either a squirrel or a rat) on the dirt road to the campsite. We were in their Prius so it was pretty quiet. We drove up to them and stopped to take a look and I was pretty sure all that we would see is their little butts high-tailing it away from us. Nope. They decided that it would be a really good idea to run UNDER the car. All of them. There must have been 5 or 6 of the furry little dumb-dumbs. Andy beeped the horn to hopefully frighten them out from under the car but that didn't work. So The Wiff got out and very animatedly tried to shoo them away. She was successful with the exception of one stubborn bugger (plus it was hilarious to think that if someone was looking at her and didn't know what she was trying to do, they'd just see this crazy lady on her hands and knees on a dirt road yelling at a car). She gave us the go-ahead to drive slowly forward so Andy did. I looked back and I could see the gopher/woodchuck/whatever-the-hell chasing after the car. "GO!" I yelled, "Quick! He's gonna catch us!" You'd think that we were being chased by a black bear or something. Finally he gave up the chase, cursed out The Wiff with his tiny rodent barking and took off into the woods. I was exhausted.

By noon on Sunday the heat had finally made even Maine unbearable so we said our goodbyes and made our way back home. Turns out it was a good thing that we weren't around Saturday night since there was a shooting right up the street from our house. Sigh. Maine is taunting me.

Open Letter to My Neighbors

Hi, It's me. Mark. Yeah, I'm the guy who tried really hard to move away from you jerks last year and the economy kicked me in the balls and said "Nope, yer stayin'". Yep. Since it looks like we'll be living near each other for what seems like eternity, I'm gonna ask a couple of favors from y'all (Hee. I never get to say "y'all" in real life. BLOGGING IS AWESOME).

In no particular order here goes:

1) if you have to pick someone up from their house could you maybe not lay on your horn every 10 seconds? Maybe you could, oh, I dunno, go ring their fucking doorbell? Oooh. Or you could call them on your cell phone! I know you have one because every asshole on the planet has one. Maybe you could even decide ahead of time when you'll be picking them up so they'll be ready and waiting for you outside on their porch! That would be fantastic. Thank you.

2) if you have a motorcycle could you perhaps not have the pipes be SOOO fucking loud that it not only shakes my crappy windows in their frames but makes me wish that horrible, awful things would happen to you. I know what your gonna say: "Loud pipes save lives". Well, I'm telling you that we can hear you fine. No need to shake my house. I can't hear Battlestar Galactica when you go by and I'm right in front of the TV. Are you compensating for something? How is it that you can actually stand to ride on that thing anyway? It can't possibly be comfortable. Look at your handlebars. If something happened right in front of you right now you wouldn't be able to react in time would you? So dumb. Great idea in this part of the state too. Y'know with all the traffic and lights and crappy roads. Ah, the feel of the open road. Which one? mm-hmm. Remember, I'm a very timid woodland critter so I will not actually be confronting you on this. You're going to have to step up and take the initiative. I'm glad we understand each other.

3) if you have decided to breed and the little shits want to have a kiddie pool I ask, nay I BEG you to please for the ever-loving-sake-of-jeebus-christmas-himself limit the sheer amount of SHRIEKING that they will inevitably do? I get it (sort of) that kids need like care and attention or whatever but they're not mine so I don't wanna hear them. These little buggers can hit frequencies that frankly, I didn't know existed. They can make my fillings buzz. I don't want to hate your children. You're making me hate your children. Just...just shut them up ok?

4) car stereos. 'nuff said.

5) if you are enjoying a lovely boxed fruit-like beverage and you have come to the end of said beverage, don't fucking toss the empty box on my lawn. Or anywhere really that isn't an appropriate trash receptacle. "Appropriate" in this sense can be someone else's lawn by the way.

6) speaking of lawns, how about mowing it once in a while? I'm certainly not a landscaper nor a gardener fascist type of dude but goddamn. We all have tiny, shitty, little lawns. It takes 15-20 minutes tops. Just remember to pick up the juice boxes first. They shred something awful.

7) if you have multiple vehicles and they all can't quite fit into your driveway, you're an ass. Don't park your behemoth SUV right up against my driveway so that I can't see cars whipping around the corner which are about to crash into me and kill me. Back that shit up a few feet.

8) speaking of cars whipping around the corner: slow yer ass down. People live here. You might crash into us. However, if you end up crashing into one of the Harley douchebags, then bravo sir.

9) if you are a shithead teenager jerkface, please don't walk by my house in large groups. It makes me nervous.

10) did I mention loud motorcycles?

To sum up, we all live in this neighborhood and we all have to respect each other's space. That space really should include my ears. Sound pollution is a given in my neighborhood since we live on a busy street but we can limit the amount of other controllable noises. At least until the housing market improves and I sell this thing. Then I don't give a fuck what you people do.