White Lightning Axiom: Redux: February 2008

Wednesday, February 20, 2008



Things kinda suck today. Lot's of problems in the world, no easy solutions. Worst part, it all revolves around Television and Internet. Blech ... priorities people! Alter the agenda! So, I've been completely drained of my will to live today. No interesting posts for you till I recover some of my vim and vigor. I won't even talk about the Cognitive dissonance that Jake and Alexis went through when discussing the lessons from yesterday. One was taught patterns, the other, how to read a clock. They argued over which was right about the lesson of the day ... it was infuriating for them that the other held a divergent view of the world. Oh, and I got called at 1805 yesterday as well. Nice.

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Tuesday, February 19, 2008


Gha v2.0

Again, cranky. I got a support call at 5:55 that was essentially someone trying to pass off work at the end of their shift by saying it was a software bug and throwing it over the wall. I countered with 3 questions; 1) Is video out? 2) Is revenue impacted? 3) Will you wait in your office till I get there? The answer to each was and unequivical no and thusly, I let the caller know that this could probably wait till the next morning. I would see them in their office at 0730 hours. of course, they did not show up till 0915. In the end, it was a non-event but it did not stop my mind from going non-stop all night long ... it precluded sleep, wouldn't you know. On top of that, I had to crawl through my system and shake out a bunch of adware virus infections ... including the damed VirusHeat virus. Gha, I say.

P.S: This flu season is apparently a killer. Beware all you who should be. Sorry I'm too late for you Pb.

The flu season is getting worse, and U.S. health officials say it's partly because the flu vaccine doesn't protect against most of the spreading flu bugs.

The flu shot is a good match for only about 40 percent of this year's flu viruses, officials at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Friday.

The situation has even deteriorated since last week when the CDC said the vaccine was protective against roughly half the circulating strains. In good years, the vaccine can fend off 70 to 90 percent of flu bugs.
Stupid shots ... wont even work!

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Monday, February 18, 2008


Weekend Redux 20080218


I'm lazy today ... quite the slug. I've been on support phone duty since last Thursday (Wednesday, actually - but that's a different story) and although the few calls I've gotten were resolved quite quickly - I'm still feeling the 'halo effect' of stress and angst. To ease my rattled nerves and frayed sense of well being, I went out with 20 of my fellow co-workers on Friday night after TSD practice and ... played poker till late in the night. Not your common Poker night mind you. We all chipped in 30 or so bucks to buy in and only one person smoked. So, no cigars, no scotch (beer though) and no darkened room with icy stares and slackened faces. What can you expect from a bunch of software geeks!? Indeed, we had a good night and I ended up drinking far more than the 30$ I gave to the pot. Of course, that did not stop me from out-bluffing my opponents on multiple occasions (purging 3 of them) till somone sneaked out a 4 of a kind when I had 2 kings up and three fives down. So be it.

Saturday was the day of the babysitter. The Mrs, Tyrants and I went over to a family friend's house who's wife was in the hospital for a series of operations to remove cancer tumors (and her esophagus) to watch over their twin 2 year olds. They were extraordinarily calm compared to our parcels of precocious paradigm poppers. We hauled along a chow-wagon of prepared food as well that I spent a good deal of time prepping. Needless to say, their fridge is packed but Beef Stroganoff will most likely only be eaten by guests, care takers and the children. She is on a soft-food diet and he is allergic to some of the ingredients. For some reason, the Saintly Mrs and I were exhausted at the end of the day.

Then, Sunday, the day of rest and worship. Heh ... being the purveyor of wickedness, there was no rest for me. Sunday School went well. We played 'statue' and talked about Minnesota. The little ones were fascinated about the idea that a snow drift could cover an entire house and that it could snow for more than 5 days in a row. We talked about change and hope and why we should look forward to change as much as we look forward to spring because it bring life anew. Etc, etc, etc. As a bonus, we talked about setting up little green-houses. I had the Mrs pick up 8 one liter bottles of lemonade which I will empty and we will put some green bean seeds in there since spring is coming. Hopefully, the seeds will germinate. I have the soil and such, I just need to drink EIGHT LITERS OF FLUID before next Sunday. They call me Saint MDMH ... patron saint of public toilets and leaky bladders.

Other notes: I chopped wood and restocked the brackets in the manor. The Mrs was home on Friday and will be home all day Monday ... so there goes all the firewood! Fortunately, I managed to get all this done before it started to rain and really get messy in the Back-50. For some damn reason, there was a NIN song in my head the whole time, PISSING ME OFF. Why I remembered this particular song at that time and could not purge it for over an hour makes me think that the Tyrants were developing psionic powers and were testing them out. I'll have to monitor this more closely. My neck now hurts on OTHER side so I'm fairly certain this is some sort of Scanners manifestation with the twins. At least I hope I get to be Michael Ironside. Cool name.

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Thursday, February 14, 2008


Rocket Science

A great deal of my time yesterday was spent trying to help other people resolve issues. Issues that I did not necessarily have the skill set to appropriately solve. Rather frustrating. This is why I think I enjoy the TSD training. If I have a problem with a maneuver or a particularly difficult form, I just have to redouble my efforts. At work, it is not an effective approach. Effort and dedication are present, just not the knowledge. Too many known:unknowns and then the unknown:unknowns. Again, frustrating. /whine

In happy-happy news: Thnx to Liz over at Finding Life Hard? who gave me an 'E for Excellence' award. She had previously given me an additional honor regarding my 'gift of gab' and I'll now need to post both of those wonderful salutes on the side-bar somewhere. My blog will begin to look like a Russian General's breast if this keeps up!

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Wednesday, February 13, 2008


Half of something, all of nothing

A minor chain of events yesterday slowed things up a bit. I was busily distracted by work when the Meticulous Mrs rings me up on the land-line phone in my sensory deprivation chamber. It was nearing 1430 hours and she let me know that the Day Care/ReEducation Facility had called her to let us know they would toss the Tyrants out into the cold cruel world at 1630 hours. Argh. I understand why they were closing (the public schools were shutting down and that requires the Professionals to go fetch their own offspring) but why they never call me (who does drop off and pick up NEARLY EVERY DAY) is sexist and illogical. Fine. I fetch them at 1620 hours and we scoot on home across the sheets of freezing rain and general wintery nastiness. I could see both the tiny kernels of frozen terror bouncing off my windshield and it's less acceptable brethren of 32F degree water droplets flinging themselves to oblivion and forming perfect little ovals of ice. We were on the brink of an ice storm. About the time we arrived at the manor, the assault by Mr Freeze had begun in earnest. I let the Tyrants 'enjoy' the 'snow' for a bit till the figured out that the sno-cone material laying about stung quite horribly when formed into snow balls and flung at each-others faces. A sled ride, however, was significantly more acceptable. Given this choice of activities, we of course refrained from attending TSD practice sessions. Good thing too. You see, the Manor is situated on a ridge where there are a confluence of surface roads which carry a great volume of traffic over/under various man made and natural obstructions. Turnpike, railways, stream ... all surround us leaving us insulated from a great deal of crime and other nuisance elements. Of course, the demeanor of the automotive explorers forging their way home was not at optimal levels. There were a great deal of accidents and nearly every bottleneck in the local region was sealed closed as tightly as Pooh in Rabbit's warren. The emergency vehicles were wailing and rushing about, only to find themselves all but trapped as well. Of course, this all settled down a bit only to start up again the next morning. A great deal of this traffic was from parents taking their children to school, only to find out that the buses did not pick anyone up because either the institutions were opening up late or not at all. Same case here ... delayed opening till 0900. At that hour, every single parent converged on the day care and filled the parking lot like Mentos in a coke bottle. To add to the misery, there was a semi truck parked in the middle of the road ... stuck while making a delivery. Ahh, yes. Good times indeed.

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Tuesday, February 12, 2008


Too Happy

Really quick ... nothing going on. Everything is copacetic here in the manor. Jake is still sick, but we are sleeping in a bit in the mornings to give him a chance to recover. I use that block of time to do a bit of snoozing and snuggling with the Mrs. Speaking of upticks ... the Tyrants have been selected to be part of a science & math study by one of the day-care professionals. They'll be getting a bit of extra time and instruction ... sweeeeet. I can't wait till they explain the conversion of matter to energy through integral mathematics. This leads to one small problem: My home life is so rich and rewarding, work is becoming more of a 'downer'. I should be happy to be able to work and have a job that many would kill for ... but man, am I spoiled or WHAT!

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Monday, February 11, 2008



To all my friends and family up north, Prayers and Hope that you will remain safe:

The scale of Sunday’s chain-reaction pileup on Interstate 390 is best described by the numbers:

Thirty-six tangled vehicles.

Twenty-five people injured, including one teenager who later died.
Wind gusts up to 37 mph and blowing snow made seeing past the hood virtually impossible.

Buses that were headed to the Rochester Institute of Technology to pick up hockey teams were commandeered by the Gates Fire Department and used to keep people warm while the temperature slid to 18 degrees. Firefighters had requested buses as part of the rescue response, West said, but those buses “were in the right place at the right time.”
Grams and Gramp called last night after they arrived home and reported a bit of white stuff as well, but not the level of destruction going on in Rochester, NY.

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Weekend Redux 20080211

Not an entirely eventful weekend. Really, things slowed down a bit. Jake is feeling a bit under the weather ... some new variant on the local Super-Cold bug that is making its rounds. I'm certain I'll get a taste of it before it rotates out of this region ... or after it mutates. Some ersatz masterpiece of misery with an oceanic volume of mucus/snot. This, of course, did not stop him and his wonder twin from participating in the Friday Night Ninja Dodge Ball of Death competition. Typical menagerie of younglings were in attendance ... a target rich environment.

Saturday was fine. The grandparents arrived in the mid-morning hours much to the delight of the Tyrants. Gave the Mrs and I some time to take naps between loads of laundry while the unwitting Amish Dad and Super Mom stepped in as surrogate targets. Football, 'transformer shoot-em-up' and board-game/puzzles seemed to fill all the waking hours that were not utilized by snuggling. Indeed, it was crushing to see Jake in tears as he complained that he wanted Gramps back on Sunday Night. I tried to explain to him how lucky he was to have his Grandpa all to himself while I had to share mine with 100 other cousins (no lie!) ... to no avail. Best buddies, and Gramps can throw a decent pass with the foot-ball to boot.

Oh, and gas around here is now at $2.90USD/gal. I might be buying a new (formerly enjoyed) car sooner than I expect. I typically use about 5gal/week but I think the time is getting close to retire the POS. Probably at the end of this year.

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Friday, February 08, 2008


Friday fritter

Okay, I pulled a muscle in my neck this morning getting out of bed ... now I'm cranky. It hurts to do nearly anything and even sitting in front of the monitor is uncomfortable. Indeed, cranky. Nearly surly! I won't post much else in the hopes that I'll not invoke any karmic blow-back since things are fairly good in the grand scheem of things. No Stasi minions banging on my door, insisting I must wear a square patch colored in the autumnal color of burnt sienna. Other than that, I've been waddling my way through the morass of grey February days ... dreaming of spring.

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Thursday, February 07, 2008


Void pointer

Yesterday was Ash Wednesday ... the time of feasting and unabashed lusty behavior is over. Missed it, durn it all. Where is the Mrs again? No matter, I got my ashes and picked up my lenten burden. Not much really, I did not give up meat but I did surrender bacon and cheese. Oh my ... bacon. I can still taste it ... must be some stuck in my teeth.

I managed to get a bit of sleep last night between the dripping of the toilet tank and the fire engines screaming past the manor at all hours of the night. Of course, 0600 came much too early and proceeded to become history much too quickly. The hounds proceeded serenade me with their whines and moans as a subterfuge to be let out. They did not want to relieve themselves of excessive body waste, they wanted to chase one of the local feral cats about the yard. Katie, in her robust vigor, ran off after the feline ... transgressing the well known rules of not leaving the yard and NOT crossing the road. She paused on the other side, knowing that in her flight of fancy, she had crossed not only the rule of law, but the demarcation of 'potential whoop-ass'. I called her out and gave her such a stern lecture that she nearly peed herself before I let her go do what was expected. Sulking and guilty stares were all she had left for me. Durned hounds, I'm going to have to tweak her programming regarding the pursuit subroutines. Outside of that, the kids were good for me; ate all their lunch, did homework, tried new forms in karate, ate their dinners, finished their breakfast, complained slightly about abbreviated tv time. Usual stuff. I'm so proud (and thankful to God) of them.

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Wednesday, February 06, 2008



A little sleep this morning ... not enough though. In addition to that, I'll be accepting additional responsibility at the Manor for a bit. The Mischievous Mrs is going to be out of town for a few days. She'll be busy negotiating peace between the have's and have-not's ... barter good will for preferred partner status. The usual stuff. In the mean time, everything here will go to hell in a hand basket over the next few days. Its a big bed to fill by myself, don't you know. As a parting gift, she let the hounds out to poo ... which means I'll have to make sure they build mountain ranges every morning or I'll have a nasty surprise waiting for me when I return to the Manor in the evenings. Ludicrous, I know, but the facts in the field have proven me correct every time. If I make them wait till the afternoon, I won't be standing in the cold watching frost form on my forearm hair before the sun rises over the back-50.

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Tuesday, February 05, 2008


Of dreams, fantasy and flights of fancy

Yeah ... gettin' none of that. I'm not sure what is going on but my sleep patterns are all haywire. I just lay there next to the angelic Mrs, listening to her gentle breathing till 0130 in the morning. Note: Never accuse someone of snoring who could very well plaster a pillow to your face in the dead of night. I'm not sure if my ineffectual attempts at slumber are a result of my angsty attitude about work, depression due to seasonal light disorder (6 more weeks!?), turning 40 or God knows what else. Sometimes, I cannot turn off my brain and no amount of wine or calming bio-feedback seems to help. I'm exhausted from TSD so it's not surplus energy. Gha. Something has got to break before I do ... might be time to go pharma, but I would rather not.

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Saturday, February 02, 2008


Weekend Redux 20080204

Okey-dokey ... let's get this party started! First off, I would like to initiate you all into this round of blogging where I am once again, getting ready for a tour of duty on the support phone. Bleh. But enough of my 'whining' about having to do actual work; on a more trivial subject I would like to wish you all a happy Ground Hog's day and an additional 6 weeks of winter. Damn Global Warming, causing it to be all cold and stuff. Just to add insult to injury, there was an ice storm this morning. Oh goody. Rats, there I go again with all them negative vibes. I'll have to use a set of bombastic proclamations regarding how wonderful things are for me right now. So, let's talk about the arse whoopin' I got this weekend at the TSD test. The Tyrants did wonderfully. Ghengis Jake had some problems with his staff form due to close quarters. He, as a 5 year old boy, had some issues with being distracted by all the cameras and had to repeat the form alone in front of the evaluation board. No biggie for him though, he is enthusiastically ambivalent and oblivious to his audience. That is a good thing though, it makes it a simple task for me to catch him misbehaving. He believes me to be a prognosticator of deity like qualities as I seem to always catch him when he exhibits his favorite misbehaviors. Alexis had her usual board-anxiety ... Master Smith walked her though it and she did fine. Then there was me. You see, the Tyrants were tested at 1000 so we were up at 0700 to let the dogs out and complete the usual morning activities. I had a difficult time getting to sleep the night before so the morning was a rough event. My examination started at 1145. I did not eat either so I was fairly depleted of all raw blood sugar by the time we started. After I finished my 1000 push-ups, I was drained. Very much so. That did not preclude me from doing the palm-strike board-break with 2 board where I I managed to bruise my finger-tips and the heel of my palm because I failed to retract my digits properly. Serves me right. But with all that, it was a rather successful event. No dehabilitating injuries, little blood drawn and my fellow testers were too exhausted to help me celebrate my 40th birthday (on the 3rd) by presenting my with punches to my arm. That will be saved till tonight, I am certain.

Sunday was not well received. The Wunderbar Mrs presented me with a gift on my day of reckoning, she took care of the fire, tyrants and hounds for me so I could sleep in for an extra 90 minutes. Much needed, if I do say so myself. Then, I had to get going. Sunday School would not wait, and neither would the weekly visit to Dunkin Donuts. I paged thorough the various fan letters and birthday cards from my adoring subjects ... fielded calls from the press and the TSD Black-Belt Brigade regarding my thoughts on making it through my first 4 decades without mortal injuries ... and received an early valentines day card from Rachel at Sunday School. Not too shabby. Here is the odd part of it all though: I spent the rest of the day doing laundry, bringing in firewood, taking naps and tending to various chores about the Manor. This is how Sunday should be spent EVERY week, but I will note that I fail to see how this could become a regular event. First off, even if I were a neophyte of the greenest shade, could I ever want to be this sore every week. My arms were like rubber bands weighed down by 100lb barbells so the firewood restocking took twice the normal time. Even grilling my standard 4 steaks for the week was a laborious endeavor! I'm not anticipating my next test in 3 months.

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Friday, February 01, 2008


Hippo BD

I should have posted this last night when Big Little Brother would have had a chance to see it ... but better late than never: "HAPPY BIRTHDAY BROTHER OF MINE". Today, he is as old as I am for the next 48 hours. May his joints and other ailing biological mechanisms be as irascible as mine and he be able to enjoy the fruits of drinking too much for the duration of the weekend! One bourbon ... and then a whole bunch more, skip the scotch and beer.

TSD the last few days has been moderately cool. Not too difficult ... I imagine that is due to the test this weekend. The Tyrants are excited and that is causing behavioral problems. Nothing out of the ordinary there. Last night was kinda sucky though. The Mrs had a work emergency so I had to step up a bit and guide the HMS Haupertonia into port manually. So, no last adult training class before the big red-belt test. I have not been sleeping well either of late. So much so that I had a difficult time getting up this rainy and bone grinding morn. It was nearly 0620 before I bumbled out of the Master Suite. I've altered the Hound's schedule a bit to make this a bit easier on me though. I have them poo in the afternoons instead of me standing in the cold and bleak morning opaqueness waiting for them to get to it. It's easier to see in the afternoon as well to bringing the back-hoe and dump truck in to do excavation isn't such a 'shot in the dark'. Friggen winter ... it would not be so bad if we had a bit of snow. Nope, just frozen mud here. Bleh.

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