Yearly Archive: 2008

It’s a scam and I’ve got proof.

DirecTV is my satellite service provider. But when I say ‘service’ I use the term loosely. And I’m talking loose like a two-dollar whore. You know, like throwing a hot dog down a hallway loose. They don’t actually provide a ‘service’ in any respect, if you want to get technical. What you have is them flipping a switch which allows you to receive certain channels on the box you pay for. So you pay for a box and they allow programming to be sent to your dish. Right? I mean they don’t really have to do anything after the install of your equipment is finished.

And that’s the thing. They don’t actually install anything. Well, at least not properly. You see, there are different crews when it comes to installing and repairing. Example, an install crew comes out, does a shitty ass piece of mothercobbler shit ass job of installing your shit, and leaves as fast as possible. They get paid per job. Not per hour. So then what happens is your shit doesn’t work. So you have to call the company. Who then dispatches repair crews out to your place. Not the original install crew. Not any install crew, for that matter. And for that matter, how about another matter – they aren’t even the same company. The repair crews work for a different company who is contracted out by DirecTV.

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Calling the Call Center

I hate having to call customer service. Mortgage company, bank, cell phone company, whatever. I hate having to call them. If I can’t handle whatever problem I’m having on the website, I’d rather just cancel my service than have to call and sit through all the bullshit. Alas, that’s not very realistic though, as I’d be changing providers and canceling shit about every month. So I have to deal with calling in and talking to someone – hopefully – a lot more often than I would in a perfect world.

The first thing that pisses me off is the menus. Forget the fact that I have to push a certain number to hear it in English. I don’t mind the “Para Espanol prima el numero dos” or whatever, so the Mexican folk have to press two to continue in Spanish. That’s fine. Just don’t make me push something to continue in the national language. But the menus are just silly and time wasting. Now what they’re trying to do here is keep you from talking to someone. If they can take care of your problems with an automated system, they much prefer that. Keeps their call volume down. Store hours, available balance, directions, whatever – they can all be taken care of without having to talk to a human. But most of the time I already know all that shit. And I need to talk to a person. Enter my next complaint.

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Farewell, old friend.

Yesterday, one of my favorite authors of all time passed away at the age of 66. He had been privately battling cancer. Michael Crichton wrote some of the greatest science fiction stories I’ve ever read, and more times than not, I found myself wondering if they were reports on events that actually happened. The Andromeda Strain and Terminal Man, for instance – both written like essays on actual events – yet, not at the expense of thrill and good storytelling.

In his later years, Michael began politicizing his writing to the point I almost couldn’t stomach the read anymore. State of Fear was one, then Next was really not even worth reading, in my opinion. I don’t want to use this space to bash Michael’s writing, but to say that it was evident he had an agenda. Maybe this explains some of that.

At any rate, he will be remembered well, and missed. I will have to add yet another date to my calendar where I drink a short of scotch in remembrance of someone. Rest in peace, old chap.

Well, my guy didn’t win.

I’m deeply saddened tonight that my candidate didn’t win. We had every chance, it seemed like, to step forward with a voice that would carry America into the next four years with a positive celerity and ensure peace and stability for the future of life as we know it.

I had great expectations that we would step forth and raise our hands in support of the next great leader, but majority ruled in favor of the underdog. The dark horse. And what saddens me the most is how close we really came. That’s right, friends and patriots. We came close enough to smell victory’s sweet, yet pungent aroma. And we elected the wrong guy.

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Industry Standards

Why is it that when I walk into a barber shop, which is like twice a year at best, someone always turns to me and says, “May I help you, sir?” Yeah, I’m here to get my tires rotated and pick up a meatball sub for the girlfriend. What the hell do you think I’m here for? Yesterday (which was actually October 9 – I know, we schedule these columns way in advance) I walked into the local SpaceTown Barber Shop, which has been there for over thirty years. And this little Asian guy turns and says that very thing to me. “Can I help you?” So I looked about real quickly, and responded, “Uh, yeah. I need a haircut. You sell those here?” I don’t think he got it.

When I walk up to the fresh seafood bar at the local Snostrebla, I expect the worker there to ask me what she can help me with. There’s a variety. I could get the fresh jumbo shrimp, the frozen popcorn shrimp, the Alaskan King Crab legs, the lobster meat, the imitation krab meat (yes, it’s spelled with a K :rolleyes: ), the fresh Atlantic salmon, or whatever else they sell. Of course she needs to ask me what she can help me with. A barber shop sells one service. A haircut. Does anyone really go to the barber shop to buy their haircare products? I mean, obviously they try to upsell you while you’re there, and sometimes people buy the tea tree oil shit, but no one actually just goes there just to buy the products, right? Well this old town barber shop doesn’t even sell them. They, therefore, sell one thing. Haircuts.

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Multi-Use Material

So I was lying there last night, thinking about some awesome things we have, and I came up with what I think might be the most brilliant idea any man has ever had. This column, though, unfortunately needs to be divided into two sections. One is partly a rant, and the other is the brilliant idea. Which one would you like to read first?

Okay, so here’s the genius: you know that memory foam shit that they always tout was developed for NASA? Yeah, they make mattresses out of it. Well I have come up with an alternative use for it, that I think you’ll agree is probably the smartest thing you’ve ever heard in your entire life in the world. You ready for this shit? Okay. Here’s my idea.

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Help Me Fix My Time Machine

I was working in the hangar this morning, trying to get my temporal matrix delineator running again. Something is wrong with the flux bank. It’s getting ridiculously complex though, and I’ve downloaded every manual I can find for it. Something has burned through one of the wires on the fonga assembly, and now the stupid thing smokes whenever I engage the cryostat.

So long story short, I replaced the two bad nodes on the flux bank and rewired the cryofuse with an Atometer 4000 Barker Plug. You know, one of those platinum-plated bad boys? Yeah. No shit. It set me back about two grand. This shit ain’t cheap like it used to be. Anyway, after I got those replaced, my camber light started blinking. NOW WHAT?!? Ha! Good lord, if it’s not one thing it’s another, right? So I removed the camber coil box, and guess what I found. Seriously. Look at this picture:

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A Very Young Space

I thought I would post some old school pictures of me when I was growing up, just to reminisce, if you will. But mostly because almost all of these photos are laughable in some way. And in a lot of them I’m in some sort of costume, though none of these were Halloween costumes or photos.

But in digging through old photos, I found these and thought some of you would get a kick out of seeing what I looked like when I was young and innocent. After a week or two, I will move this post over to the photo journals archive, so it won’t be listed in my archives or anything, but you can always get to it through the “links” link. Anyway, hope you enjoy.

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A Real Local Celebrity

I was listening to the radio in the kitchen Saturday morning (because we have one of those kick ass radios that mounts under your cabinets and plays your iPod and stuff…) when the most interesting thing happened. I got annoyed. Yeah I know, it’s not seldom that happens. Anyway, this guy called in and was making a joke about one of the disk jockeys, so one of the hosts goes, “Tell him who you are!” to the guy on the phone. So of course our ears perk up and we get all excited, because there’s someone who is obviously very important on the phone.

It was the corny dog eating champ.

So this guy ate twelve corn dogs in like ten minutes and is obviously very proud of himself. And the hosts were asking him questions about eating corny dogs and whatnot. He’s answering them like he’s an authority on something. Get over yourself! You ate a dozen corny dogs at the state fair! I bet there are three people on my street who could beat that record, but you just happened to show up to the fair. And enter the contest. Fag.

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I’m changing my career path.

Yes, my fearless readers, I have decided to go into insurance. And let me tell you why. We all know it’s legal crime, and who doesn’t want a little crime under their fingernails? Aha, two puns in one paragraph. So let me tell you why it would be so wonderful to work in insurance. Well, actually, let me back up and rephrase that because I think it probably wouldn’t be all that cool to work in insurance. The money, and therefore, the fun, would be in owning an insurance company. That’s where it’s at.

First of all, you charge people money every month. Let’s talk auto insurance, just for the sake of conversation. Okay, so let’s say you pay me around $150 a month for your Jeep Grand Cherokee to be insured. Ooh, let’s even say that it’s bright orange with a brown racing stripe down the middle! And it’s got twenty-inch wheels that are painted brown. And one of those chain license plate frames. Okay. So I insure that for you. You pay me $1800 a year. So if I have say twenty clients, I’m making a pretty good bit of coin. Now we get to where it would kick ass to own the insurance company.

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Interview With a Feminist

For a long time, I’ve been friends with Stella, who is a true, bona fide, self-proclaimed feminist. But we’ve never really talked about it. Most of what we talk about is about more important things, namely, things centered more around manly things. So what exactly is a feminist, and what do they believe in? Do they really honestly expect people to believe that women should be treated as man’s equal? Ha! Oh. Yeah, apparently they do. So we here at SpaceBrew, in the ever-endeavor to get to the bottom of humanity and its insane ways, have decided to do a little research into one of the biggest problems plaguing our civilization: the women’s liberation movement. (Sorry, Stella, my shift key broke there, or I’d have capitalized all that.)

So I sent some interview-like questions to Sean and she replied, myspace interview style, in an effort to better educate us. Ever the good sport, she didn’t get terribly upset at the insults I hurled at her. She just accepted that she is a woman, and therefore, my inferior, and sort of just took it in good spirit. Before posting this column, I actually allowed her to read all my parts as well as her answers, all in context. At the bottom of the column, I gave her a ‘final word’ area, where she can comment on anything that didn’t appear in the questions I sent her.

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Happy October

You all know that October is National Domestic Violence Month, right? Yeah. I don’t personally condone it, but it is a nationally recognized moniker for the month. So who am I to go against the rules? I do live in this society, I should abide by its standards. Sigh. So who are you going to abuse? Now remember, it has to be ‘domestic’, which means someone you live with. Yeah. I was thinking my sister-in-law, but I don’t live with her, so that’s out.

I know, I know, you’re telling me that domestic violence isn’t funny and I shouldn’t joke about such a sensitive subject. I say Bullshit! We have an entire month here (and it’s one of the long ones!) that we’re supposed to recognize and respect domestic violence! :shobon:

So let’s talk about some other things that are going to happen this month. Number one, and this one is most important to me, Stella is back! Seriously, I’m psyched about this, because I’ve seen a bunch of her writing already, and it’s all good. If you’ve read her other columns on file here, you’ve at least grown to like her. But these new ones will make you love her. God, she’s gotten cynical!

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Let’s talk about spiders.

Spiders are great little creatures. Millions of people like spiders quite a bit. I like spiders. I’ve had a large huntsman’s spider in the corner of my bathroom for several years now. I don’t know what she eats – it’s not like there’s a lot of bugs in the bathroom! No, but seriously, they’re good for the environment, they help prevent global warming, and they’re a great alternative fuel source if you grind them into a fine powder and mix them with Tang® and shrew urine. I cannot back up any of these claims, however.

But that leads me to my real point: spider silk. Now that shit is bad ass. It’s so bad ass, in fact, that they’ve made movies about it. Have you maybe heard of a little movie called Spiderman? It’s about a boy who finds a bunch of spider silk and starts dressing up as a spider so he will have a reason to use it. Spider silk is seriously strong though. Its tensile strength is stronger than steel, and it’s extremely lightweight. You know I’ve read somewhere that if you were to take a line of silk long enough to wrap around the entire earth (which is like 70 or 90 miles) it would weigh less than sixteen ounces. Sixteen ounces! In other words, a little more than a pound.

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Ringtones Are For the Birds

Okay, I guess it’s time to admit something to you, great readers: I don’t really work in a high-rise condo-style office building with a swimming pool in my office and a glorious view of downtown Dallas. Gah. Man, now that I type it out like that it sure does look good. Actually, never mind. I really do work in that. I have a four thousand-square-foot office overlooking glorious downtown Manhattan. Or did I say Dallas? Whatever. The point is my office is probably better than yours. I have more leather in here than a cow farmer in Fort Worth. I would put up a form that allowed you to submit to me your office square footage and value and it would return to you a value of whether or not mine was better than yours. But it’s not worth the time coding it because all it would ever say was, “Nope, sorry, Space’s is better.”

So anyway, to my point. Let’s say I didn’t work in a high-rise luxury office. I would, in that case, probably work somewhere lowly like the rest of you, like a cube farm. Okay, screw it. I can’t really tell my story if I keep up this lie. I will go ahead and shoot straight with you. For the last two weeks, while my office was being renovated with solid platinum and diamond stuff, I have been working in a temporary location at a normal office, in a cube farm. It’s a step down, but it’s also a way for me to keep in touch with the people. The normal people. And I’ve come to learn one thing for sure about cube farms: I hate ringtones.

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My fly troubles are over.

You know what Venus Flytraps do? They catch mothereffing flies, that’s what! These things kick ass. If you’ve never seen one in action, I suggest you run up to your local hardware store or retnec repus tram law and pick one up. My girlfriend walked by a whole aisle of them yesterday and said, “Ooh ooh, kick ass! Check this out, Space!” Yes, she calls me Space.

So to make a short story long, we came home with a Venus Mothereffing Flytrap. And it does what the container advertised: it traps some mothereffing flies.

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What happened to baseball?

My girlfriend and I were at her son’s baseball game last night, and I have a few words to say about it. First of all, he’s eight. So it’s still not that serious. It is, however, more serious than your typical “everyone plays” league. It’s double A ball, so the kids are a little better than average, and this year, they’ve begun to allow base stealing.

Now for those of you familiar with the rules of Little League baseball, which I am not, you’ll know that up until a certain age, they aren’t allowed to steal bases, and the coaches pitch part-time for the pitchers to give every batter a fair chance at a hit. Except that sometimes the coaches screw it up for them worse than the pitcher was doing. Whatevs. The point here is that now they allow base stealing.

And encourage it.

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The Day the World Didn’t End

Space Says:

So what do we do now that the world didn’t end when it was supposed to? Well, I imagine a lot of people will be saying the same thing when December 13, 2012 rolls around. They’ll throw up their hands and say, “Uh, what do we do now? Yesterday was supposed to be it!” And what’s funny is I know some actual people who were preparing themselves for the world to end the other day, when they turned on the large collider. It was thought that it would create some black holes, you know. And the scientists said, “Yeah, well it could, but we’ll be able to manage them.”

Really.

So you have experience with black holes then? You’ve managed them before? You can somehow keep them from sucking in whatever you’re trying to control them with? Uh huh. Just push it into the trash can? Or wait, do you use another black hole to eat up the one that’s causing problems? How, exactly, tell me please, do you plan to control these black holes that might abound? Well, anyway, I’ve gotten off point. There was a lot of fear that the world would end when they switched this thing on. People were even protesting, trying to get the project shut down so it wouldn’t evaporate our world as we know it. Well they didn’t succeed. The thing is now running. And the world, so far as I know, is still here.

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Lost Treasures

Over the last couple of years, Captain and I have analyzed and cataloged the inventories of over seventeen thousand couches. We took our science team, which consists of our Department of Couch Research, our Department of Breast Analysis and Appreciation, and our entire Ministry of Sexual Relations. Don’t ask why we needed those departments. But you can see how couches have to do with sex, at least in some respects.

Anyway, what we endeavored to do was to find out what people had lost in their couches. And there were plenty of treasures to be found. People with children usually had a few Legos and some small plastic pieces of play fence. People with cats found a lot of cat hair and an occasional chunk or two of litter, sometimes a play ball (you know the ones with the little bells in the middle of them?). But the most popular items we found in people’s couches were French Fries and pennies. Ninety-six percent of the couches we cataloged had at least one of each beneath their cushions.

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Character Flaws

Smug bastard.Ever notice how smug the Quaker Oats guy looks? It doesn’t really make me want to buy their product, it makes me want to kick that pilgrim’s ass. He in fact looks like he’s trying not to laugh at you. And speaking of kicking ass, I’ve now settled my old hypothetical: Mr Clean would definitely kick the shit out of Mattress Giant.

But seriously, brand-name characters are either just really bad ass, or really bad. Bad ass? The Most Interesting Man in the World, for Dos Equis beer. That guy is bad ass. I mean, hell, his blood smells like cologne. Bad? Jared from Subway. Is this guy’s fifteen minutes not up yet? Will someone please run over his stupid ass? Look, Subway Marketing Campaign Advisor Guy, we all know he didn’t lose all that weight only eating Subway sandwiches. Sandwiches have bread. Bread has carbs. Carbs make people fat. We don’t buy it. So please. Retire his stupid ass and let’s move on. We’re all sick and tired of his birth-control face by now.

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SpaceBrew Goes Mobile

I know you’re all wondering why there was no column posted this morning. Well, so am I. Actually, I didn’t have anything prepared because most of the writers are slacking or on vacation or just don’t care about their jobs anymore. We’re about to do some major housecleaning here, folks. Let this be a warning to you SpaceBrew writers whose accounts have gone stale! Lay-offs are imminent!

Anyway, the reason I didn’t post was because I lay there last night thinking about my lovely readership, which has grown quite strong here of late. And I realize a lot more people are browsing the site on a mobile device these days. And since I care about each and every one of you, I decided I would spend the morning designing an alternate theme for the mobile browsers of the world. I even made it easy for you all. You don’t have to type in a different address, you don’t have to click some “Go Mobile” link or anything… You just show up.

That’s right. If you’re surfing the web on your iPhone or iPod touch, just visit spacebrew.com and check it out. Compacted and stripped nearly bare to save on your kilobytage and screen space. Now you can view the site the way you want to. Because you know that’s our motto here at SpaceBrew. Browse the Site the Way You Want To™

Screenshots (for those of you without iPhones): 1 · 2

Life Lessons from Space: Fighting

I figured since Shine is posting her series on “How to be a Good Girl”, I could help you fellas out from a male perspective. Now I must preface this with a disclaimer – I will not tell you how to be a “good boy” or anything gay like that. I’m not, nor have I ever been what anyone would call a “good boy”. I know nothing of it, and therefore cannot offer any words of advice in that direction. I can, however, tell you some things that might help you make it through life without being made fun of or getting your ass whipped too badly.

I also can’t promise you that I will have ten rules. I may or may not add to this list at some time in the future, but for now, be happy with the few rules you’re getting. And take these to heart. They’re coming from a tried and true bad boy with personal, first-hand knowledge on how well they work.

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Cleanliness is Next to Manliness

You know that guy at work (he’s usually Chinese) who you always catch brushing his teeth in the restroom? And you always almost crack a smile, thinking, “Heh. This idiot is bru–” then you stop short, realizing it’s actually probably a pretty damn good idea. So you keep your mouth shut. Well I have become that guy. Not Chinese. I bought a hygiene kit for work.

Well, they don’t actually sell hygiene kits – at least not that I’m aware of. I had to build my own. So I bought a school box for fifty-nine cents and loaded it full of goodies. You may be wondering why my box is pink. Well, apparently, girls don’t need school supplies as much as boys. Because the Retnec Repus Tram Law shelves are loaded with thousands of these pink pencil boxes. They don’t have any other colors. Not that I care what color my hygiene box is. I can decorate it with markers and stickers at a later date.

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I’m not a vegetable thief.

I went to the doctor last week because of a sinus cold. While I was there I asked him if he- –wait no, it was a she. A hot doctor lady who looks kind of like a librarian, but you can tell she’s hot. Like that one in Road House. Anyway, I asked her if she could look at my plumbing, because I had a couple of tiny red spots on it. So I dropped my drawers and she quickly rolled back in her chair and said something about my having her peas. Whose peas?

Here are some sample peas.Now my girlfriend was standing in the room with me. Well, she was sitting in the girlfriend chair over there. I looked back at her with a frown. My girlfriend doesn’t have any ‘peas’ that I know of. So the doctor couldn’t have been talking about hers. I asked her what she meant. She replied, “I think you might have her peas. Let’s take some blood and we’ll test you out.” She left the room quickly, hair blowing behind her like she was riding a white stallion into a milky orange sunset.

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In God We Trust

I read a news article about a man who is suing the nation in an effort to try to get that simple little phrase removed from US currency. He says it represents a definitive stance on religious principles. Does it? There’s a live vote going on as I write this. Looks like so far about three quarters of us think it’s a patriotic and historically significant phrase and should be left alone. What do you think?

My opinion on this is simple. I’m all for the separation of church and state, and no, I don’t think people should have to say “under God” in the pledge of allegiance if they don’t want to. Whatev. But don’t amend it because of a few. Because this nation was founded under God originally. And here’s the other thing. Whether it’s crossing the line between separation of church and state is irrelevant. God is still over both church and state, last I checked. I mean, anyone who creates a universe has the right to run it however he deems fit, and everything in it is technically ‘under’ him, yeah? So whether or not you choose to accept it, speak it, acknowledge it, admit it or otherwise, God’s still pretty much the man. Church, state, city, farm, wherever.

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SpaceBrew Review: John Mayer live

John MayerFriday night was John Mayer night. If you recall, I was commenting from my brand new iPhone will sitting in the lawn, waiting for him to take the stage. Some guy with a very unattractive voice started things off. His music was all right. Then came Colbie Caillat. She’s pretty bubbly. She has a great voice though, and her show wasn’t bad at all. Then, at 9:53, the lights went out.

Presently, a shirtless John Mayer came out on stage, saying, “What’s up Dallas?” He played his entire set without his shirt on. And let me tell you, he can play in whatever attire he feels is fitting. He’s good enough to warrant playing in a woman’s thong and a purple boa. John Mayer rocked the house.

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Some things just weren’t meant to be.

You all know how badly I want the new iPhone. Well, I have in fact already ordered one and paid for it. Now I wasn’t like some of those fools who went and stood in line for seven days to get one of the first releases of the 3G. I waited a couple of months and then mosied into the AT&T store because I needed a phone. Might as well get the iPhone. It’s been out for a couple of months now, so there shouldn’t be a big wait or anything. So what this should tell you is that I’m a patient guy. When a new electronic device comes out, I don’t rush out and get it right away. I wait until the excitement dies off.

Then I rush out and get one.

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Sub-Par Food Service

One of their chicken sandwiches.A buddy and I went to eat at a sub shop over here, because he couldn’t shut up about it. “Oh my God dude you have to try these subs. They’re the best freaking subs ever created.” I was like hell yeah, if they’re the best ever, I sure would hate to miss out on that shit. Give me one of them bitches now! So we went to Jimmy John’s. It’s not a major chain, but who really cares about that? As long as their subs are good, they can be in the running, right? And every time I drive by there, it’s always packed like a can of tuna.

Well here’s my review on the place: I give it one star. Out of five. Why? Well, the bread was good. It was soft and fresh, and very luscious. But the rest of it was like I was eating at home. Nothing special at all. And get this bull ass shit. They don’t have swiss cheese. They have one kind of cheese. One. No pepper jack. No monterey. No cheddar. No provolone. Just American. Or whatever the damn it was they had. One kind. And they only had like two kinds of meat. Okay, I’m done talking about this place. Let’s talk about a good sub shop.

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And then we camped…

So let me tell you about our camping trip last weekend. It was hotter than a fresh pile of jalapeno-stuffed dog shit. We had fans in our tent, too. I also had a window unit air conditioner. I had it sitting on a TV tray, which was nice. Except that somewhere in the middle of the night, the cat ran into the TV tray, and the whole thing toppled over, crushing her. Rest in peace, Peachez. Damn, I’ll miss that cat.

There’s – well, there’s really not much to talk about. I mean, we camped out. That was about it. We didn’t really sit around drinking beer or anything. I mean, it was just a camping trip. Anyway, I told you I would tell you about it, so there you have it. Now you want to hear something real exciting? Read on, dear friends. Read on.

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I Want to Believe

Man this is great. Peligro Pete just got back from Roswell and he brought me a souvenir! I’m liking all this free time he has now since he got canned from the force. Anyway, they spent some time in Roswell watching alien autopsy videos and dodging abductions left and right. Well I haven’t talked to him yet, but I’m almost positive that’s probably exactly what he did. But he took a little time to stop in to some alien store and get me a souvenir. What a guy!

OFFICIAL ALIEN BEERWhen I got home last night I knew to look in my fridge for the souvenir he had promised me. When he goes places he usually brings me beer. What a guy! So I opened my fridge and this is what was sitting in there. (Click on the image for a full-size copy.) And two things happened simultaneously.

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Roadside Memorials and You

Let’s talk briefly about the roadside memorial. Well, I’ll write a few words about it, and you can read them. Then, if you’re not too lazy, you can reply in comment form and let me know what you think. If not, then feel free to throw your hands in the muthafukkin air. Then I’d like to ask you to at least consider waving them around like you just don’t care.

This is sad.Okay. So what is the point of the roadside memorial? And here’s what I mean by that: What is the point of the roadside memorial? You see, if I were to lose someone on the side of the road, or someone I knew were to die in a horrible tragic accident on a highway, I would be pretty saddened. But I don’t think I would feel compelled to decorate the place of their demise with flowers and headstones and whatnot. Seriously, why would you want to decorate and commemorate the place they died? I’m okay with putting those same flowers and trinkets on a grave site. That’s where their final remains lie eternally. Or until the lease is up on the site. :rolleyes:

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Thank God it’s Friday.

No, it hasn’t been a really long week or anything. I haven’t had a series of bad days. I just don’t really like having to get up every morning to go to work. I’m beginning to believe I was duped into this career field. When they told me cleaning and emptying portable toilet systems would be fun and exciting, I believed them. I’m beginning to think differently though. Maybe I need a career change.

We’re going camping this weekend. And by camping, I mean setting up tents and sitting outside getting sweaty and drunk. And by we’re I mean a whole big group of us. Should be fun. I’m bringing my electric grindcoil and Stout is bringing the baby mouse livers. As long as the girls bring their marble guns, we should be all set for a helluva time!

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White Van Specials

You ever get accosted in a gas station parking lot by one of these gangs in a white van, trying to sell you speakers for cheap? I have. Probably four or five times in my life. I’m always amazed at how this person’s story is so similar to the last person’s I heard. “Oh yeah the guy at the warehouse accidentally gave us a couple of extra speakers and if I don’t sell them, then the guy I’m delivering to will take them for himself and sell them. I just need some extra cash man!” Uh huh.

I’m also always amazed at how rude and persistent these people are. And how when I tell them to go screw themselves they start cussing me out. Well let me back up – I don’t tell them to literally go screw themselves. I say, “No thanks, I have a pretty good set of Klipsch 8.1 surround sound speakers in my theater at home. They cost way more than the speakers you’re selling, and are probably better, therefore.” Then they say, “Well you suck and don’t know a good deal when you see one!” And I say, “Uh, yes I do. Which is why I’m going to have to pass on this one.” Then they get mad and start cussing me out. Then I tell them to go screw themselves.

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Ending the Week Right

Weeks to me are like grass. I insult (or cut down) my grass once a week. But it keeps springing right back up. So too are my weeks. I keep ending them and nailing down the lid with drinking massive amounts of alcohol, but new ones just keep popping back up and sending me back to work. And this was a short week, since I took off Monday. And last Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Well, in fact, that long vacation made this short week feel like an eternity. How am I supposed to be expected to want to be at work?

Anyway, I thought I’d write a quick note about the kick ass phone call I got as soon as I arrived in Florida last week. A publisher called me and said they were publishing a short story of mine, and said furthermore that they were very, very, very, very interested in my second novel. Yes, he did say the word ‘very’ four distinct times. Which excited me quite a bit. So you are looking at the next published author! Well, maybe not the next one. Someone might get published in the next couple of days. But definitely one of the next ones. Pretty cool, huh? I know, it took long enough.

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The Sunset Beach Diaries, 2008

Lonely UmbrellaRemember how I told you I was going to The Boot? Well actually it’s more like A Used Condom, but whatever. The point is, I went. I snorkled on the beach (actually in the water near the beach), I sat under umbrellas and watched the ocean, I drank cold beers and I looked at women. Did you know you can get Corona in a can? I thought that was pretty awesome. I got some pretty good shots while I was out there. Click on that picture and you can see the set. I put nine photos up in the set.

Anyway, I wanted to tell you about my return flight. Because no one cares about what happened on my vacation. Nothing exciting. I got in several fights on the beach, beat up an entire team of muscle-bound volleyballers because they pissed me off, got bit by a shark and ended up dislocating his jaw for him, got so tan that I got discriminated against at Ricky’s All-White Bar and Lounge… Like I said, nothing interesting.

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Happy Independence Day!

Old GloryHappy Independence Day, friends. Many people will tell you “Happy 4th of July!” today. And you’ll probably say it a lot. You’ll be asked what you’re doing for the fourth of July. You’ll ask people what plans they have for the fourth of July. But hardly anyone will say the words ‘Independence Day’. And I think it is important that you do. Let’s remember why we celebrate the fourth of July. Let’s remember why it’s fun to watch fireworks. And please, most of all, let’s remember those who have fallen making this a holiday.

Please salute, hug, or thank a veteran today. Have a great, safe holiday, friends. God bless America.

Junk Mail and Me

I get junk mail. You get junk mail. We all get junk mail. But lately, I’ve noticed a pattern. It’s hard not to notice when you’re getting the amount I’m getting, actually. But I’ve taken a new tactic here. I’d like to tell you about it.

So WAMU has been sending me shit, I guess to sign up for their credit card, or open a bank account with them. They have two separate mailers they send out. I get both of them. Two or three a week. Let me repeat that so you’ll understand better. I get both of their mailers, two or three times a week. That’s four to six pieces of mail from them, per week. I am not exaggerating here, dudes. It’s insane! I also get an envelop from Overland Mortgage at least once every two weeks. Clearly not as frequent as the wamu shit, but still enough to notice.

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Heading for The Boot

Tomorrow I’m flying out for the sunny Sunshine State. I’ll be leaving at around nine in the morning, which, of course, means I need to arrive at the airport tonight around six o’clock. The Boot!Florida is the Sunshine State, right? It could be Montana – I can’t remember. I also can’t remember if anyone actually calls it ‘the boot’… I guess these details aren’t really important. Irregardless, I’m heading for sunny Tampa Bay tomorrow morning, and let me tell you how excited I am!

I am excited.

So I’m leaving tomorrow morning and getting back some time on the 7th. Trust me when I say that when I get back I’ll be darker than a Mexican hiding in a closet. Not like gay like someone would come out of a closet, but just rather to illustrate that it’s dark in there. You know what I mean. Anyway, yeah I plan to lie on the beaches sipping my ties and watching hula girls um… You know, I really don’t know what happens on the beach, but I will be there. Maybe not with my ties and stuff, but maybe a Corona? There’s another Mexican reference for you. But actually, you know what? I won’t really even be on the beach. Because I’ll be SCUBA diving. To you lay folk out there, that means I will be self-contained underwater breathing apparatus diving. I will be under water.

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Finally, I’ve something positive to say.

I’m always on here ranting about shitty customer service and how people suck so badly. So I figured you’d probably like to hear about a good experience I had as a customer. Wednesday afternoon, present tense.

I just got back from the barber. Actually it’s a salon. I was on my way driving to the Sport Clips when I passed by a shopping center that had a little salon in it. So I said, “What the hey.” I knew it probably wouldn’t be as busy as Sports Clip during lunch hour, and you really can’t mess my hair up. Even if you do, no one will ever know, because of the way I wear it. So the point being that I really have no preference when it comes to where I get my hair did, because I deliberately mess it up anyway, as a rule. That’s how I roll.

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Rights? What rights?

Why are people so willing and ready to give up their personal freedoms so easily, and with so little objection? Read ahead and you’ll see what I’m referring to. You might not think this is a big deal, or that I’m nitpicking about trivial shit. But I’m not. And I’m not willing to bend on little shit like this, because the more you give them, the more they will take from you. And you have to draw the line somewhere!

When I’m leaving Wal-Mart, I don’t expect to have to show you my receipt. Big deal, you say? Yes, it is a big deal. Number one, I’ve already paid for the shit. It’s mine now. The receipt is also mine. It’s proof that I purchased my stuff in case I need to return it. It’s not yours to see, and you have no legal right to ask for it. If I refuse to show it to the old woman at the door, there is nothing they can do about it, and they certainly cannot detain me over it. Most people just assume they have to show their receipts at the door, when asked for it. No! You don’t!

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There’s a letter in your mailbox!

Shit, piss, f**k, cunt, c**ksucker, motherf**ker, tits – fart, turd and twat. That’s what I wanted to scream out this morning when I heard George Carlin passed away last night. He died of heart failure in the hospital at the age of 71. Supposedly he checked himself in yesterday afternoon, complaining of chest pains. Now he’s dead.

George CarlinCarlin was my favorite comedian of all time. He speaks to the commoner with his jokes, and relates to us in those little ways that remind us we’re all human. Like, “Have you ever looked at your watch, and then didn’t know what time it was? So you look again, and you still don’t know. So you look again, then someone asks you – ‘What time is it?’ – and you say, ‘I don’t have any freakin’ clue!'” Almost all of his jokes were like that in early years.

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Expensive Hobbies

I’ve kind of gotten into this photography thing. I have always had an eye for it, and a desire to get passionate about it, but just never had the equipment. Well, now I do. Anyway, I’ve been taking pictures of everything lately. You know, you have to take a hundred shots to get ten good ones. If you’re lucky. Sometimes it just doesn’t work. Well, I haven’t gotten to a level yet where I can make an exposure work no matter what. But I almost always can see when there’s potential for a good one.

A picture I took with the D40So I went to the dive shop the other day to get some equipment. This – uh, by the way, is a subject change here. Now I’m talking about SCUBA. A buddy of mine from work is a PADI instructor and runs classes at this dive shop. So he got me a discount on the SCUBA gear I needed, because I’m taking a dive trip here next month. I’ll be diving for sharks and buried treasure down in Key West. That’s okay, you don’t need to be jealous.

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Renewable Resources

In an effort to help better the world a little bit, I feel it is my duty as a writer to come up with some ideas. Some things we take for granted, or perhaps never even think about. I feel obligated to come up with some ways to help make this place a little easier to live in for our grandchildren, and our grandchildren’s grandchildren. And our grandchildren’s grandchildren’s grandchildren. So here are some of my ideas that will perhaps help us to save or cut back on our usage of some of those resources that will soon go away.

First of all, and probably most importantly, is gasoline. We’re about to run out. And it costs a shitload of money right now. Patent pending, yo.For future generations, reading this post a hundred years from now, it costs an average of 3.95 per gallon right now. So I’ve come up with a method for propelling these beasts that suck up so much of our gas (and money! ha ha). See in this figure, an attachment to affix the contraption to your front bumper. Then you turn on the fan, and it blows air into the attached sail. This is the same principle of sail boating, except that we’re providing our own draft. Now, I know what you’re thinking. And to answer your question, before you ask it, no, it doesn’t have to come in those silly colors. Don’t be ridiculous.

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Orange (Explosive) Candy

While sitting at the lake the other day, we had an interesting experience. I mean besides the BMW that drove by with the 20-inch low-profile spinners and the extra bassy speakers. My sister and her youngest boy were there. A couple of other friends had their kids there, and I had Callie. So all the kids were running around, getting in the water, splashing, shooting water guns and eating hot dogs. A good, relaxing time, it was.

Then my sister’s boy comes walking up with orange goop all over his mouth, face, neck and hands. Oh, hey, Evan, what you got there, pal? Well, it was a paintball. He had put it in his mouth and chomped down. It exploded, sending orange paint all over the place. Hey, at least it was orange, am I right? “Well why did you put a paintball in your mouth?” And his reply? “Well, I thought it was candy!”

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The Price of Ice is Not so Nice

Happy Friday the 13th everybody. Hope spooky things happen today. :rolleyes: Actually, you know what would worry me more, would be Monday the 13th. If I were a superstitious guy, which I’m not, because that’s just gay, and I really don’t get into gay stuff, especially meaningless shit like superstitions, yeah, including that one about throwing the salt over your shoulder, but if I were a superstitious guy, and I actually believed that the number 13 was unlucky, and it fell on a Monday, then I might be worried. But Fridays are awesome!

Anyway, so I went camping this weekend. Just a few close friends and I – nothing big. We only took like six coolers full of food and beer. Don’t you have to be close friends to go camping with someone? I mean, really – are you going to take someone you don’t even like? Anyway, yeah, like I said, we went camping. And it was so son of a bitching hot that we had to keep buying bags of ice. And I finally realized something. I’m in the wrong damn business.

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I’m not a patient patient.

Have you ever noticed that no matter what time they tell you your medicine will be ready (at the pharmacy) you will still end up waiting at least fifteen minutes? I’m curious, why the hell is it that Chili’s is able to tell me exactly what time my meal will be ready for pickup – and they’re always right on time – and they’ve only been doing this guaranteed time thing for like two weeks, yet pharmacies, who have been overcharging people for medicine for almost a hundred years still can’t get my mother freaking prescription ready on time? Wow, that was a long sentence.

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Happy Gay Pride Month

It’s June. How the hell is that possible? It seems like just yesterday it was May. Well, day before yesterday. This year is just hauling ass. Like a pickup full of donkeys. But it’s also Gay Pride Month, and I’ve something to say about this. You knew I would.

Just like Black History Month. And the Black Entertainment Network. And Indian Appreciation Day. I don’t even need to delve into that bullshit and how racist and divisive it is. But Gay Pride Month? Seriously? Do we really need to proud to be gay? Well I’m okay with your being gay, and your being proud to be gay. Let me rephrase. Do we really need to have a month that condones and celebrates outward pride about being gay?

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The Flaming Yawn

Get it?  It’s sort of a play on words that sounds phonetically like ‘filet mignon’.  You like that shit?  Well I do, and let me tell you why.  Because a buddy and I invented it.  And not just the term.  The drink.  I unfortunately cannot divulge the exact ingredients, but I will tell you it has a little vodka and a lot of flame in it.  Yes, you set that bitch on fire in the glass.  The Flaming YawnAnd yes you quaff it while it’s burning blue.  And yes – well, no, uh, I would um, probably recommend you stay away from The Flaming Yawn if you’re wearing a decorative beard.

We discovered this drink while sitting at the Space Bar a couple of nights ago.  I poured in the several key ingredients and attacked the martini glass with my trusty Zippo.  Poof.  The gorgeous flame covered the glass like a – well, like flame covers alcohol.  And then I drank it.  You’d be surprised how subtle and wonderful the taste is.  It’s exotic, yes, but very cool and classy in the flavor department.

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Is it cold in here, or just me?

Tuesday in Taiwan, a man grieving over the death of his girlfriend, decided to climb into the morgue freezer with her. Good sweet shit, what the hell is wrong with people? As if it wouldn’t be claustrophobic enough in there just by yourself, imagine halving that space. And further, being in there with a dead body. Bllllrrrr… Screw that.

I’m not really creeped out by death that much. I’ve been exposed to my share of it. But I don’t really like touching cadavers if I don’t have to. And I’ve had to before, which might explain why I don’t like to anymore. Okay, so back to the point… I’ve seen that movie The Jacket where The Pianist gets stuck in a meat locker in a straight jacket-type thing. Talk about some mother effing claustrophobia. Sweet Elephant, no thank you.

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Don’t Be That One Guy

My father always used to tell me, “There are three types of people in this world. Those who can count, and those who cannot.” Smart man, he was. But I think there are more types of people than the three I just listed. Maybe there are four types. Either way, the type I want to talk about has yet to be named. I need you to help me find a name for this type of person.

It’s a pretty broad group of people, and includes all different races, sexes and ages. While it includes the woman in the Lexus talking on her cell phone, slowly drifting into my lane, causing me to swerve over and hit the orange barrels to avoid a costly collision (Hey bitch I just saved you a ton on your insurance…), it also includes the redneck who still thinks it’s funny to have a set of large plastic balls hanging from the rear bumper of his truck. Nothing says class like a set of testicles on your pickup.

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Still Life

Back from a crazy weekend. Sorry I’m tardy with the column. When you have a weekend as crazy as mine was, it’s hard to get up on Monday morning and write one before the sun comes up. It’s also damn near impossible to write one the night before because you’re tied up in the craziness of the weekend. I’m going to talk more about my camera though.

Oh, I didn’t tell you I got one? Well I told you I was going to get one. I got one. It’s only 6.1 megapixels. Not that impressive by number, right? But being an SLR, it really uses those on every picture. No digital zoom, no pixel interpolation, just plain bad ass pixelry. You like that word? Pixelry means ‘the ability to utilize pixels’. Anyway, this one is one of my favorites. Took Callie to the ice cream shoppe. And took 200 something pictures. Now keep in mind, I’ve sized these down to 800 by 600. The originals were 3000 by 2000. I hope none of the quality was lost.

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Relief? Check.

So by now we’ve all gotten our relief checks in the mail. Right? If you haven’t, then please stop reading here. I don’t want to spoil the surprise for you.

Yeah, so I got mine this morning. Well, it didn’t come in the mail, as such. It just sort of came in my bank account. That sounds unnatural and disgusting. It arrived in my account. How’s that? And let me tell you what a relief it was.

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Faults Advertising

You know how you keep hearing that stupid commercial on the radio from a car salesman saying some shit like, “If you can find a better deal anywhere in Texas, we’ll just give it to ya!”? The very first time I heard it, I caught onto their sly antics. Obviously they’re not going to give you the car. It’s actually scary how wildly proper their grammar is in that sentence. It’s just that America is so dumbed down by now that no one gets it. The subject of that sentence is the word ‘deal’. So when they use the pronoun ‘it’ in the predicate, it refers back to the subject, just like it should. If you can find a better deal anywhere in Texas, they’re just going to give you that deal.

And speaking of grammar, of which I know you’re all so fond… Look at how we write things like Texas’ Best Hot Dogs! And Dallas’ Hottest Titty Bar! It’s not technically improper to put an apostrophe without an additional s at the end of a possessive. But in formal writing, it is highly recommended. Ever hear of Strunk and White? Yeah. They say “Always put an s at the end.” So it should be Texas’s Hottest, or Dallas’s Biggest. And my point in telling you this is that people have for so long been omitting that additional s at the end, that we’ve begun to pronounce it the way it’s written. So when you hear these commercials on the air, it sounds phonetically like this: Come check out Dallas finest set of tits! And yeah, I do have a problem with that.

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Dude, that’s a lot of money.

So by now I’m sure you’ve all heard about the guy who walked into a bank here in Fort Worth, Texas with a check from his girlfriend’s mother. Not a big deal, I guess. People’s girlfriends’ mothers give checks to them all the time, right? To open a record company and whatnot, I mean. For 360 billion dollars.

Dude, I’m sorry, but I’ve never had a girlfriend whose parents liked me. My wife’s parents like me quite a bit. But if they had 360 billion dollars to spare, I doubt they’d write me a check for it. They might give me a million if they won the lottery or something. To take care of their daughter and grandchild, right? Sounds logical. But 360 billion? From a girlfriend’s mom? Yeah. Sure. It’s believable. I mean, I’m a likeable guy, but – okay, enough on that.

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Happy Space Day

It’s a new month, dear readers. And this might just be the month we’ve been waiting for. Let me tell you a few reasons why today doesn’t suck, to start with. Number one, it’s May. Spring is definitely here. It’s been gorgeous outside. Anyone who doesn’t believe that hasn’t seen me driving around all week. I’ve had the top down and the doors off all week! Oh, well, or maybe you just don’t live in Texas. It’s been gorgeous here.

I took the first three days of this week, and Friday of last week off. So I had a six-day weekend in which I could do a lot of driving around with the top down and the doors off. I don’t get great gas mileage in the Jeep, but hey, gas is pretty cheap these days, right guys? :shobon: Right? So that there is proof that today doesn’t suck. Today is Kinetic Kim’s birthday. She would have been thirty-two today. Happy birthday, Kim. That, of course, means I’ll pour myself a couple of fingers of scotch tonight in her memory.

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Join the Alliance

Some time last year, Kimbre and I inadvertantly formed the Huge Shades Alliance. Bring back beauty with offensively large shades™. Or some such. Well, her legacy lives on, and I’m on a mission to find the largest, most ridiculous – yet still stylish and somehow not gay – shades I can find. It has become a hobby of mine. Looking at and trying on the largest shades I can find in an effort to bring back the beauty.

How, you say? Well it’s really simple. The larger they are, the more space they reflect. And in those reflections you can’t see the ugly and inhumane scum we as humans have become. That’s probably kind of a lame (if not hippy) answer, but work with me. It’s all I got.

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The Epitome of Abandonment

I’d like to talk about something that has bothered me for quite some time. Twenty-three years, to be precise. On the 23rd of April in 1985, Coca-Cola made their big announcement that they would be changing their formula. Remember that? Well, Katy, you’re excused from this since you weren’t born until a couple of years later. But the rest of you, do you remember that? Let me remind you – or enlighten you – whichever is appropriate.

Pepsi had such a great market share of the soda pop drinkers that it really started threatening Coca-Cola’s business model. So Coke decided they needed to change their formula to taste more like Pepsi. Ahem. Let me repeat that in case you didn’t hear me properly. Coca-Cola decided that the best way to get back in the taste race was to change their formula to taste more like Pepsi. Wait. What?

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Did you have to?

The Space CrocsMy office is pretty basic. Your typical cube farm with a few offices around the edges. For my own personal office, they knocked down some walls and joined a few of the smaller ones together so I have about 5000 square feet of space. Pool table, arcades, wet bar – just the essentials, you know. I’m pretty important here though. Anyway, it’s not like a corporate environment. We’re all professionals, but none of us is corporate – if you know what I mean. Shorts, crocs, t-shirts, women leave their bras in the car, the usual. It’s a fun environment to work in.

Anyway, even though it’s relaxed and comfortable and pleasant, it’s not conducive to concentration in a lot of ways. And it’s also not very private. For instance, when you enter the bathroom, you get the feeling the people in the next room can hear everything that’s going on in here. And they can. I can hear everything that goes on in the women’s restroom. So yeah, when Penny Nichols, the Hottest Girl in the Office, walked by me on our way to the restrooms this morning, she waved and said, “Hi Dr. Space!” and I smiled and said, “Wuddup, Penny,” and I went in to the restroom thinking all was dandy. Until I heard her stall door close. I was like, “Oh no. No. Please no.” And then that bowl breaker she ripped just about broke my heart. The echo was loud and forceful. I mean, I guess I should have known that since she’s so hot she probably shits with some amount of authority. But wow. I could hear every sonic detail of her encounter with the porcelain. And boy let me tell you, she laid a slab cracker in there. Son of a bitch. :gonk:

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Good Things About the IRS

I wanted to say good things about the IRS. So I did. Now we can move on to other sentences I should say. Like, “To hell with the IRS,” and “Son of a bitch I hate the damn IRS,” and “Wow, so the IRS is like legalized crime, right? What the hell.” Those are pretty typical sentiments when talking about the IRS. IRS, of course, is an acronym that stands for Invasive Rape System. And for those of you who don’t know, they take your hard-earned money from you. So not only do you get raped, they take your money while they’re doing it. Then if you protest or anything, they do what’s called an “Audit” where they bring several friends to your house, dig through all your private shit, then take turns raping you before throwing you in jail. That’s right. If you don’t let them have their way, they throw you in jail to get what? Ass-raped some more.

So tax day has come and gone another year. I know millions of you filed extensions. And you know what I say about that? I say kick ass. I pat you on the back. Because you know why? Because screw them, that’s why! I filed this year on April 1 or so, and throughout the process got more and more angry as I watched more and more dollars get tagged to be sent to them. Oh, so the ten thousand dollars I sent you already last year wasn’t enough? Right. So I found as many deductions as I could, claiming everything I could think of. Donated to charity? (You can claim up to $500 without a receipt.) Uh, oh yeah. Now that you mention it, I did send about five hundred bones their way. Who the hell wouldn’t claim something you have to show no proof for? Duh.

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How I Plan to Solve the Global Warming Crisis

Global Warming is an issue I don’t take very lightly. I take it extremely seriously. I have, therefore, been working on developing some hard-hitting plans to help our great planet get out of this catastrophe. Some of my solutions may sound silly out of context, but in reality, I think they would really work. Like for instance, since you never hear people complaining about living in Hawaii, I figured we could move a couple of the continents (or build a new one out of dirt from the Sahara desert by dumping it into the ocean near Hawaii) down to around that area. See? That shit is genius. And it solves three problems at once. Number one, it makes a normally cold place like Antarctica really warm and beautiful. Number two, it helps with over-population. Because right now no one wants to live there except people of Eskimo descent. But a lot more people could move down there into that great big space if it was right on the equator. It’s like putting plywood in your attic so you can start using it as a room. And number three, well… Actually I don’t have a third reason. But I bet you can come up with one.

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The Incredible Shrinking Medium

I’m always amazed at how far we’ve come in the last hundred years with technology. It’s crazy that only a hundred years ago we had just invented the telephone, and now we have cellular shit, that doesn’t physically connect to anything, that can send pictures and texts and porn instantly to anyone else with a cell phone. Through the air. I still have trouble understanding how an analog phone worked, transferring voices across a wire. But here we’re sending that stuff through the air. And it’s digital. What?

But I really came to talk about media formats today. Well, cameras would be one qualifier: we used to use photo plates in our cameras. And film. Remember film? Ha! Now we use memory sticks and whatnot. And the idea is apparently to make them as small as possible. Seriously, give it a rest, people. My phone has a one-gig micro SD card in it. It’s smaller than my pinky fingernail. But it holds a gig worth of pictures and music. And porn. What the helling hell.

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National Golf Day

Let’s talk about golf for a minute. I know, I know, that’s a really long time to spend on the subject, and I might run out of shit to say about it long before the minute is up. But bear with me.

I used to play golf. And by play, I mean, drive a cart around and carry a bag of clubs, swinging at balls, marking nines on every hole… You know. Playing golf. My dad bought me a set of clubs when I was a kid. So I played with him all the time. I’d usually find myself moving my ball up to match his lay. I’ve obviously way outgrown those clubs by now, so when I play these days, I borrow someone else’s clubs. I usually play once or twice a decade. Last time I played 18 holes with Aaron was about three years ago, and the game took us almost eight hours.

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Sad Tuesday

Thank you all for coming by, day after day, to read the words of our SpaceBrew Writers. But sadly, I have to announce we are closing our doors. So this will be the final column. We had some good times, didn’t we

The Captain was arrested last night for driving under the influence of “something that smells a lot like scotch”. Moonshine has been kidnapped, and is only reporting in by cell phone text messaging every eighteen hours – clearly not often enough to write columns, and Space got bitten by a spider on his right index finger yesterday. His hand swelled up so badly that he can no longer type, play the guitar, masturbate or even type. He had someone type this column up for him

So please feel free to post comments here detailing your experiences – happy and sad – with SpaceBrew over the years. Let us know your favorite column ever. Let us know why you always come back. Your favorite writer. Whatever you want. Just let us know you were here. And maybe we’ll see you again in another life

Thanks, you all.

Copperwound Chronicles Vol. 3

Here in the last week, my band has spent fifteen hours in the studio, recording cuts from our second album. We’re really knocking them out, too. We’ve recorded three complete tracks for the album in that relatively short amount of time. We also recorded a fourth song, which won’t be on the album. It’s a promotional thing for an event planning company. So technically, we’ve recorded four complete songs in fifteen hours. But let me tell you a little bit about what goes on in the studio.

People all the time ask if they can come hang out with us while we’re recording. Somewhere remote in their minds, I think people associate music studios with cocaine and strippers. It’s a helluva good time, all of us hanging out, snorting off their bellies and popping champagne into the air, confetti everywhere, a big wild orgy. It’s off the hook! But yeah, no, yeah, it’s really not like that. Continue reading…

Eradicate the Crickets

You know what’s worse than lying there, not being able to fall asleep – when you should damn well be tired enough? Lying there, not being able to sleep – when you should damn well be tired enough – but you can’t because of a stupid effing cricket. Clearly it’s in the laundry room, which backs up to our master bedroom. But every time I open the door to look for his little ass, he shuts up.

So you end up sitting there in the dark, flashlight in hand, waiting for him to speak up. Sitting on the cold tile floor, waiting like a ninja. Or, ooh-ooh a Green Beret! And he never chirps again. I know he must be under the dryer, but I don’t even want to go into how much of an anathema that is. There’s no room in my laundry room to move the dryer unless I disconnect the washer and move it out first. So I have to live with the chirping?

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The History of Beer

I read a great article about the history of beer and thought I would share it with you. Go read it when you have a few minutes. It’s very interesting. Now we know who to blame for the taxation of beer. That bitch, Cleopatra, needed more money for her wars so she decided to tax it. Thanks.

Anyway, Flavio and I were outside talking about this, and I began wondering who the first person was to ever drink beer. How cool would that be? But if the Sumerians were the first to brew it, we’re talking thousands and thousands of years ago! So my theory developed pretty quickly, because I was concerned about why anyone would try such a thing. Surely he must have brewed it by accident. So here’s my thinking:

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I just joined the Darwin Awards.

We used to do crazy shit when we were adolescents. Seriously. My mother used to shout at me for jumping off the roof into the pool. Man, if she had seen some of the really crazy shit I was doing, she would have begged me to keep jumping. My girlfriend pulled up beside us on the highway one night, honking and flashing her lights. It was dark, there was no one else on the highway, but my pickup was very recognizable. The graffiti-style paint job was distinct. So she pulled up and rolled down her passenger window, waving at me and shouting something incoherent. Well, I’ll just get my buddy to take over driving!

So my buddy slides behind the wheel and I hop over to the passenger side, crawl out my window and into the bed of the truck (while we’re still moving). Then I did the whole acrobatic stretch between the two vehicles and slipped down through her window and into the seat. I guess I could have just waited, since we were going the same place, and both arrived some three minutes later. I missed her though, you know?

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Not a Happy Customer

If there’s one thing I hate more than slamming my finger in a rusty door, or stepping on a squeaky nail, it’s got to be incompetence in customer service. When I’m in a store inquiring about a product, your sales staff should know the answers to all my questions. Whatever happened to training the employees on the merchandise they are selling? When I worked in the Wal Mart Photo Lab, I took time every day to stand there reading the boxes of all the cameras. I learned what the best features were on every one of them, and was able to effectively compare and discuss intelligibly the best options for the customer. So if I go into Best Buy or Circuit City, why can I not expect someone working in the television department to do the same thing?

There’s nothing I hate more than asking someone a very specific question and having them look at the damn tag. Dude, I can do that myself. And already have. For instance, yesterday, I was in Micro Center, picking up an IDE/SATA I/O controller board for my home PC. I’ve troubleshot the problem down and determined that the root cause must be a bad IDE controller on my mother board. And since the computer I built is around three years old now, it’s a little outdated. It’s still a bad ass machine. I have a Pentium 4, and a good amount of RAM. But you know how quickly technology upgrades and supersedes itself. So my point is that it’s hard to find a socket 775 mother board that still supports the type of memory sticks I have. DDR2 is the new thing.

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I wear sheets and carry a lantern.

Have you ever heard of the Anson Lights? Anson is a small town about thirty miles north of Abilene. There are some lights there. It’s pretty interesting. Seriously though, there’s a dirt road that leads off one of the main roads there, which you can turn down to get to the cemetery. The cemetery runs all the way down this road until you get to a crossroad. At that point, you’re supposed to turn your car around and flash your headlights three times.

Legend is that a woman’s husband ran off with her baby and so she and a search party went out into the field to look for him. Her request was that if anyone from the party found the child, he should signal by flashing his lantern thrice. So when you do this in your car, the baby appears in your back seat!

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Not That Kind of Pool

A buddy of mine and I were shooting pool last night. We were sharing a table with some lovely ladies we meet there quite often. I guess you could call them pool friends. Anyway, I was on my way to the restroom and walked by the foose ball table. There wasn’t anyone around it. But one of the handles was pushed all the way in on the far side, which made the long steel piece stick all the way out on the side I was walking by. I was about to run into it. So I reached out and slapped it in on my way by. So I wouldn’t impale myself on the foose ball table, you see.

And I hear this, “what the hell!” really loud. I looked over, still walking, of course, and see a guy standing there with his hands out. “Oh, sorry, chief. Didn’t know you guys were playing,” I said, and went into the lav. After I finished I returned to my pool table. And after about three minutes, I’m leaning over the table, about to make a four-rail bank shot on the nine. And dude walks up and makes a big show of scattering all the balls on the table, then stands there with his hands out again. Staring at me.

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International Affairs

When I was still in the service of the Service, back in late 1996, I was sent to Germany for Operation Joint Endeavor. Basically, we stationed ourselves in Germany for 90-day-tours and handled their aircraft maintenance while the permanent party there flew into Bosnia several times a week. Bosnian women are hot, by the way. I don’t really care too much about color of skin or whatever when I’m on the prowl. But I for some reason thought they were a brown people. No. They’re Scandinavian. White, blonde-haired, blue-eyed snow bunnies. Cute little gorgeous cuties. Anyway, I digress. The point is not the hot Bosnian women. The point is that I was sent to Germany.

It’s funny, by the way, how German women love Texans. Garret and I wore our cowboy hats and boots and the whole getup while we were over there. Every time we would walk into the Irish House (in Germany), the women would immediately flock to us. Have you seen me? I’m not that hot. I guess Garret was. But meh. They loved my hat. And this shitty German rock band that did 80s American Rock covers was playing “Dead or Alive” by Bon Jovi when we walked in one time. And every time he would get to the part where he says, “I’m a cowboy, on a steel horse I ride”, he would point to us during the ‘I’m a cowboy’ part. Sigh. Yeah it was pretty gay. But every single time he’d say it, he would point, and every time he would point, everyone in the bar would turn to look at us. So we’re standing there just sort of waving. Every time. I might have gone home with a brown woman that night. Anyway, that’s not the point either.

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Promotional Ideas

A friend and I went to see G. Love & Special Sauce at the House of Blues this weekend. Tristan Prettyman opened for them. She is, by the way, very pretty, man. I know, I’m sorry. You saw that coming and I said it anyway. You should know me by now though. Anyway, we were packed in there like fresh little sardines (maybe that’s not the best analogy because they don’t smell very good – but wait, never mind, maybe that’s why I chose it), all bouncing together and all the normal audience reaction you get sucked into. G. Love totally owned the place. Well, after Bob Dylan got through with it. We had to wait outside for quite a long time because Bob ran over. He’s obviously forgiven for it, though I’ll probably have a word with him about not at least inviting my friend and me in to hang out.

Anyway, a good time was had by all. We stood in an inch of beer and sweat – quite literally. Girls’ purses were soaking wet. The cuffs of my jeans were soaked. Pretty nasty stuff. I’m of the opinion that places like that with standing room should have gratings on the floor. Or make the entire floor from a grate. That would be grate. Oh God, I’m sorry.

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The Dredge House Chronicles, Vol 6

Final Edition

Well I’m going to wrap up these here Chronicles, as I think I’ve told most of the good stories that happened in the Dredge House. So to recap, you know it was a party house. Someone was always drunk, having sex (even surprise sex), getting drunk, getting ready to have sex, getting into a fight, or playing nintendo. A lot of our Fry Street Friends would come by after long nights of drinking and having sex on Fry Street and hang out for a while to drink and possibly have sex at my house. Old Guy was somehow always cool with it. He never complained. And our dirt driveway always had plenty of room for more cars.

So one time I brought a girl home with me. She was a lovely little thing, cute and petite. She looked a little young, but that didn’t really catch my attention too much, because I had seen her buy cigarettes. She was at least eighteen. She came over and we turned off all the lights in the living room. I sent Wil to my room because some other couple was sleeping in there, and I was stuck on the couch. TJ’s room was occupied as well. Well this young lady I brought home wanted to hear the Lost Boys soundtrack while we discussed magic and drank popsicle juice. So I put it on. It got through Cry Little Sister and she told me to play it again. So I set the CD player on repeat track, and away we went. Well I won’t bore you with the details of our expedient congregation. But it lasted a while. Seriously. When we got done with all the uh – whatever I called it up above – the index on the CD player said 23. It had played Cry Little Sister, an almost seven-minute song, 23 times. I was pretty sick of it. But I hadn’t wanted to stop long enough to turn off the repeat mode.

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Cannell The Man

Shine and I ran up to the Barnes and Noble last night to meet Stephen Cannell. Again. Remember when I met him the first time? Yeah, he was just as cool. So I wanted to go in there and first of all get him to remember me. He has some family attachment to Spaceyville, where I live. He said last time I met him, “Oh yeah, I know Spaceyville! I’m up there all the time!” So on my post-it note I put ‘Brian from Spaceyville’ so maybe it would jog his memory. It did. He remembered me.

Then I wanted to pass him my book so that maybe he could read something good for a change. I kid, I kid. No, for real, last time we met he told me to mail him a copy. Well I never heard back from him. So I just took him a copy tonight, slid it across the table and said, “Yeah Steve, we actually have something in common. I design my own bookcovers as well.” He was like, “That’s great!” So he asked when I had finished it, and if I had anything else. I told him, “Yeah, I’ve finished my second novel, halfway through my third.” He complimented me and shook my hand. Then I got my picture taken with him. He grabbed both books and held them up for the photo. Pretty awesome picture, if I might say so myself.

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The Wasteful Years of Sleep

I was thinking earlier about how I needed to rotate my mattress. Because there are forming in it two large crevasses where my wife and I lie at night. They say you’re supposed to rotate them 90 degrees every once in a while. I guess so you end up making a pound-sign shape on the bed, rather than the symbol of equality. What’s that all about? A conspiracy?

Anyway, that led me to thinking about how much time we spend on the mattress, and why we should purchase a really good one when we do make that purchase. They say you spend a third of your life sleeping. Well, I retorted in my thoughts, I don’t need to spend a third of my salary on a freakin’ mattress! Ha! I showed them, eh? But then I slowed. And I considered. A third of my life. A third. Wow. So what it boils down to is I’ve spent eleven years sleeping, total. A ninety-year-old has spent thirty years of his life sawing logs.

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If I Had a Time Machine

Before we get into the details of how I would use my time machine, I feel the need to expose some technical details to you. There are certain issues one runs into when traveling through time, and these have to be addressed. There are some technical modifications that must be inherent to the machine itself in order to prevent certain things from happening. Some of these are just basic safety features.

For instance. Say if I wanted to travel back in time to 1989 so I could visit Tiananmen Square and watch the protests, I would set my time machine back to the day before it started. I would attach the wrist strap, select the exact time, then I’d click “Insert” on the icon running in the Human Icon application. Now, if my time machine didn’t have a Relative Space-Time Binding Computer built into the architecture, I would arrive at that exact minute I specified, and there’d be no planet beneath me. Forget that the Earth orbits the sun. Remember instead, that the whole of the Solar System (and the Milky Way, beyond that) is moving through space as well. I would appear somewhere in the blackness of space, nowhere near anything terrestrial. That RSTB computer mod basically binds the time to the space, makes calculations based on Earth’s insane kinetic posture, and moves me through space, as well as time. So when I appear on April 15, 1989 at Tiananmen Square, the Earth is actually there underneath me. Relativistic Global Positioning. It’s the new-age, people. I feel sorry for those people who experimented with time machines back in the early 90s, and had to find out the hard way that time and space move separately!

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And a Happy New Year…

Looks like we made it into another century. I don’t even know what that means. I heard a sports commentator the other night during the football game talking about Testeverde, and how if he played for one more year, he would have played in four centuries. Centuries? Really? Last I checked, that still meant one hundred years. Right? I guess he meant decades. But if Vinnie’s thrown a ball in the 70s, 80s, 90s and these here the oughts, he’s already made that mark. Either way, it cracked me up quite a bit.

We celebrated last night by going over to a buddy’s house and drinking, listening to music and throwing the Frisbee. In the garage. Seriously. While we stood out in the garage with beers and cigarettes in our hands, we started tossing around the Frisbee. It was actually quite entertaining. We made up rules as we went along. “Now you can only use your left hand.” “Now you can only throw over-hand.” Stuff like that. Then we got bored with the Frisbee and nailed up a piece of plywood and began throwing knives at it to see if we could get them to stick. Our parties.

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