Monday, April 30, 2007

Cancelled

For today's blog I was going to google a few pictures of a certain theme, then post them here with "funny" captions. Well, not really captions, but I was going to try to tell some kind of story with them. Whatever. The point is, after taking a few passes at it it wasn't working. It felt way too forced and just wasn't funny.

I tried to recover with a list: "Places I would rather be right now instead of working," but that idea is played out, and I have been complaining a lot about work lately.

I take this blog very seriously, and the last thing I want to do is post something that doesn't pass my rigorous quality assurance standards.

Thank you. I hope you have a nice week.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Wouldn't you know it

The one day I don't have my camera with me is the day I see a tank driving down Main Street. Weird. And this time I'm pretty sure it wasn't a dream.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Friday Banality

At 2:37am I finally complete the business of the day and lay myself down for much needed rest. I quickly fall into dreamland but apparently I bought a round trip ticket because I wake up about five past three feeling refreshed and invigorated. Oh no! I have accidentally taken a power nap. That doesn't help me at all! Takes another hour to fall back asleep, and though I wish I could report otherwise, my slumber is troubled and dis-pleasant.

My alarms go off at the usual time (I have two alarms in case one breaks down) and I can't help but groan. In two weeks I will be 27. I guess I've gone from being a "young man" to just a "man" although maybe I skipped "man" and went straight to "old man." As I fumbled with the coffee maker I was like "Ooouggh. Ahhhh. Dammit. Grrrrrr." Later I fell asleep while brushing my teeth, and I didn't even think that was possible.

On the way to work I saw a license plate holder that said "Utah Utes - Kick Ass." That's stupid. It might as well say "I like sports." License plate holders ain't what they used to be. Where is the wordplay, the puns, the double entendres? What a sad state of affairs. When I was in High School Debate our slogan was "CHS Debate: We kick aff." Now THAT was a pun, my friends. I don't remember what it means though...

By the way, though I did high school debate I wasn't very good at it. Does that make me more of a nerd or less of a nerd?

The one good thing about my morning has been this new CD mix I made. Though I'm not particularly a fan of Metallica or metal in general, I put their cover of Thin Lizzy's cover of the Olde Irish Folk Song "Whiskey in the Jar" on there. That was just the song I needed this morning. The lyrics really speak to me. "Mah shareem shamado shamada." True dat, holmes.

I wore my sunglasses on the way to work, and I haven't taken them off yet. I'm going to keep them on until someone says something.

Earlier today someone found my blog by googling "R2D2 mailbox sightings Denver." Sorry I couldn't help you with that, stranger. Hopefully you'll stick around. There is much to learn here.

Okay I'm done for now.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

pepper spray

Hi. I don't have anything planned for today so I'm just going to freestyle.

I used to have Thursdays off, but not anymore. Here I am at work. How's my day going so far? Well, one of my colleagues just responded to the question "What's up?" by saying "The sky!" and then laughing uncontrollably. That's how my day is going so far.

In a few weeks I will have worked here for five years. I remember the last year pretty well, and the one before that, and the first year a little bit, but years two and three are a total blur. Funny thing, memory.

I'm hunkering down quietly in my desk. I can't see anything but I can hear the world around me. Two people are having an argument about faxes from Key Largo. Seems that no one wants to deal with those faxes. Two other people are having a more pleasant but no less irritating conversation about ice cream. A suitable topic t'be sure, but it's been going on for at least ten minutes and that's too long.

I think I should just strap on my ipod to drown all this out, but then it's easier for people to sneak up on me, and I like to be ever vigilant.

Some guy just sneezed, and a few seconds later mumbled "No one said 'bless you'..."

Geez.

Someone should make a movie or a show about how terrible office jobs can be. Now that's something I'd like to see.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

B's Illustrated Guide to Denver, Part III

I see that I've scared you away from the driving option. That's okay! We live in a wonderful time in which air travel is a very real possibility for commoners such as yourself.

Behold, the Denver International Airport. It was built in the mid-'90s at a cost $4.8 Billion. That’s about as much as one of those Vegas super casinos, which is fitting because Cirque de Soleil designed the main terminal.





When trying to get around the airport you have a choice of using the flat escalator thing or a Star Trek style transporter.



Looks like Jet Blue has fallen on hard times.



Yes, the Denver International Airport. A shining example of humankind's continued innovation. A wonderfully pleasant airp- SWEET BABY JAMES WHAT THE HELL IS THAT?






Why is Darth Nazi killing the rainbow? Why is there a weeping mother holding a dead baby? Why do I have to be confronted by this?






Oh PHEW! All the children of the world have slain the evil warrior, using not swords and bombs but the power of flags and ethnocentric clich├ęs.





Way to save the day, little Webelo!




You too, Canadian Mountie Jr. and ... Blonde Haired Amish Boy?



And yes, you too, Menudo. Your '80s Latin-pop stylings were the most important of all.




This thing is officially known as the Denver Airport’s Crazy-Ass Mural. In fact this thing used to be even crazier-assier but they completely painted over two other murals. A sampling:



Who thought this was a good idea? Probably the Aryan secret society that built the airport. Or maybe the lizard people that live underneath it. Yes, there are some bizarre conspiracy theories surrounding this place. Look them up sometime. But don't look up the airport on Wikipedia because there isn't anything there about the weirdness (the plot thickens).

Here's another thing about the Denver International Airport. Sometimes you're on your way back from Texas after being run out of town by Cowboy Beard-O, and you have a stopover in Denver. Sometimes to get to the plane we have to walk through a tunnel, down a set of creepy parking garage-like stairs, then through another long tunnel before finally meeting a frazzled gate agent. Instead of looking at your boarding pass she just checks your name off a list printed from one of those old timey printers. (you know, the kind that go “vrrrrrrrrnh, vrrrrrrrrnh, vrrrrrrrrnh.”). Then it’s outside into the freezing Denver air to climb the stairs to the plane. I’ve always enjoyed boarding planes via stairs, because it makes me feel like the Beatles or maybe Richard Nixon.



Sometimes right as the plane is about to take-off a flight attendant comes up to the woman sitting right in front of you and says, “Ma’am, you have been removed from this flight and need to leave.” Your first thought is that these two women know each other and that it's some kind of joke, but nope. Another flight attendant had felt threatened by something the woman had said and asked that she be removed. The woman is not happy about this and puts up a struggle. A security guy comes up and says that if she doesn’t exit the plane immediately the flight would be cancelled and the police would be called. Finally she storms off. Also she's holding a giant teddy bear.
Seems that a flight attendant accidentally ran over this woman’s foot with her luggage, and then the woman started swearing and screaming at her all the way down the hallway. Wild.

Thankfully the flight doesn't get cancelled, because it would be silly to have to spend the night in Denver because of a ran-over foot.

The end.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Bad News

They have ostriches now. We're going to have to rethink our whole strategy. This could be the end of our kind.


Monday, April 23, 2007

B's Travel Guide to Denver, Part II

There's another way! Perhaps the Wyoming idea isn't for you. You can still get to Denver from the Salty North, but travellers beware, for this path is fraught with peril.

I speak of course of the dreaded Highway 6, the Highway that follows Spanish Fork Canyon through the Misty Mountains.

Looks nice...





...but don't be fooled! Note the way the narrow-shouldered road twists and turns. With over 730 fatal accidents a year, it is the 5th most dangerous road in all of Utah.

Car accidents don't phase you? Well what about mudslides, tough guy? Yes, in 1983 a massive mudslide buried Highway 6 and completely obliterated the sleepy hamlet of Thistle.


The Highway was shut down for over a year, costing the Utah economy over $200 million (in 1983 dollars!)

If that wasn't enough, in 2005 the highway exploded when a dynamite truck crashed. No joke.



The flames reached the explosives and sparked a massive explosion just before 2 p.m. Wednesday, leaving only the truck's engine block and a mangled axle. The blast carved a hole in the road 30 feet deep and about 70 feet wide and propelled concrete barriers into the Spanish Fork River hundreds of yards away. The force of the blast also sent out concussion waves that shattered windshields and crumpled car frames and left many of the witnesses with temporary hearing loss.



If you still think you can handle Highway 6, I've got one word for you: dinosaur attacks.




If you do make it through the canyon a reward awaits you in the form of the beautiful Green River.







A common misconception is that the Green River is named for it's greenery, but it's actually named after soul singer Al Green.



Once you cross the border into Colorado the first town you hit is Grand Junction. That city can be summarized in one picture:


Then you drive a few more hours, yada yada yada, you're in Denver.



Next time! The Airport!

Friday, April 20, 2007

Art


(prints are available through my gallery)

Thursday, April 19, 2007

B's Travel Guide to Denver, Part I

Half a fortnight ago I sat in a dimly lit Bodega and wove thrilling tales of Denver to any who dared listen. As it happens I am a bottomless well of information when it comes to Denver related travel. I figured it only fair to use my powers as the World's Most Adventurous Blogger to share some of my information with you, gentle reader.

This series is simply a guide to Denver, not of Denver. I can only get you there, after that you're on your own.

Oh, and this guide is mostly for travel from parts west. If you live anywhere east of Denver, then I am of no assistance.

We begin with I-80 Eastbound, also known as the Erickson Trail. This will take you through Salt Lake City, around Park City, and through the mountains crossed so many years ago by the Mormon Pioneers.

Past Park City the scenery gets fairly interesting. Lots of mysterious canyons and red rocks. You also pass by this automobile farm.



Once you cross the border to Wyoming the first town you run into is Evanston. If you need liquor, fireworks, porn, and lottery tickets, this is the place for you. That's why Evanston has been voted The Most Debaucherous City in America twelve years running.

This picture symbolizes the drive through Wyoming. Endless and boring. As soon as you crest the hill on the horizon the scene repeats endlessly.

Squarely in the middle of nowhere lies Little America, a hotel/restaurant/gas station/convenience store/fun center. Make sure to stop by and say hi to this fella.


He does this amazing trick where he holds completely still in a glass box. I talked to him for a bit on one of his smoke breaks. He says he loves Wyoming because it's just as desolate as Antarctica.
Parts of Star Wars were filmed in Wyoming. George Lucas will try to convince you that they were filmed in Africa, but he's a liar and a thief.



Perhaps you've heard of the famous Lincoln Tunnel?





Fort Steel was most unimpressive. The Apaches would have overrun that thing in no time.



Your next five hours will look like this:

Eventually you will approach Laramie, a happenin' college town. Here's a sampling of billboards spotted along the way.
-McDonalds, Next Exit
-Best Western, Kids Stay Free!
-Cavalryman Supper Club, Best Steak in Wyoming!
-Microsurgical Vasectomy Reversal!
Microsurg...huh? Wyoming: Land of Bad Ideas
Speaking of billboards -



A billboard encouraging you to share your meth with your children? I don't approve of that one bit.

On the final run into Colorado I spotted this scene a few times: car pulled over, cops searching through it, handcuffed dude sitting on the side of the road. My advice to you? Keep your beers down.


Sing it with me: "Rocky mountain high, Colorado." Nice mountains, jerks.



At least the gas is cheap.


After long painful hours in the car the city rises from the horizon! Denver ho!


So there you go. Do with this what you will. For my personal feelings about the drive through Wyoming, see the picture below:


Stay tuned for Part II: The Southerly Route

All Apologies

Okay, I gotta come clean. This has been bothering me all day. I didn't really see the Olsen Twins. I only saw one of them. The post below contains two pictures of the same person. I don't even know which one it is. These pictures were taken when I accidentally stumbled upon the set of the movie New York Minute. I'm always stumbling upon movie sets and bumping into celebrities. Maybe I'll tell you more stories some day. While I stood on the sidelines and watched there was all sorts of crazy hubbub going on, not the least of which was seeing some Hollywood type sitting in a chair and getting her ears massaged.

BUT speaking of twins, tonight on the drive home from a brief incursion into White City I passed two 7-11s directly across the street from each other. One was normal 7-11 but the other was strange and made me uncomfortable. The sign had a weird font, and it was larger than any 7-11 I've ever seen. I would have taken a picture but I didn't have my camera.

Okay that's another lie. I did have my camera. As a responsible blogger I carry my camera with me at all times, lest I miss a photo opportunity. There was however an incident last week in which I drove past a rather bizarre scene on State Street, and though at the time I didn't have my camera with me I noted to myself "Come back with camera, take picture for blog, write about it on blog." A few days later I fetched my camera and went back to State Street, but I couldn't find it and eventually drove far South of my usual comfort zone. Then it occurred to me that though I was positive that this thing was on State Street, I had no idea where on State Street it was. Already jarred by that though, I then realized that I couldn't remember exactly when I had seen it, as I hadn't driven State Street in quite some time. The natural conclusion is that the whole thing was a dream. I never actually saw what I thought I saw. That disturbs me because it felt so real.


Come to think of it, the sight I beheld that I wanted to photograph was Teddy Roosevelt dancing with a minotaur while John Lennon played the banjo. Yeah...probably...probably a dream.


Anyway, that's your early Thursday morning update. Stay tuned for another update at about 11:00am Mountain Standard Time.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Twin Cinema

I don't mean to brag or anything, but one time I saw the Olsen Twins.


Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Nothing to see here

Really not much to talk about today. I'm at work, and a little later the boss's boss's boss will be sitting with me to "observe" me. That's going to severely limit my internet time.

Random thoughts:

-the most obnoxious form of tag is phone tag

-the phrase "Vegas, baby!" needs to go away

-there's this coffee shop I like to go to but every once in a while I walk in and it smells like roasted turd, and that's just plain off-putting

-no wait, the most obnoxious form of tag is Tag Body Spray


I guess that's it.

Monday, April 16, 2007

They've all conspired to fix on me a frown

If it were somehow possible to communicate one's inner mood simply through facial expression, then I would look something like this:



Incidentally, the above is what it lookes like when you forget to pick me up from the airport and neither you nor anyone else I know bothers to pick up the phone. That happened a few months ago, but it's a close approximation of how I feel right now. You see, my usual chipper mood has been replaced by what can only be described as grumpiness.

But why?

Well, this weekend I discovered that I owe a fair sum of money to the governments. That's a total drag.

Aren't taxes due tomorrow? Maybe if you hadn't waited until the last minute you could have planned for this a little better.

Fine. Lesson learned. Don't pay taxes.

That's not the lesson at all! The lesson is to stop procrastinating.

Well I guess...waitaminute, who are you?

I'm your conscience, B.

Huh. Isn't this a little gimmicky?

As opposed to the hard-hitting journalism this blog has demonstrated so far?

Touche.

Anyway, in years past I've received a tax return and I was kind of counting on that again. I was going to put that hypothetical money toward a new computer.

BUT WHY???

Well, here's what happened to my computer a couple weeks ago.


Attacked by viruses and spyware. Non-stop popup ads. Note the one in upper-right corner, advertising the world's largest sex and swingers personals community. I thought they already had that, and that it was called "The Internet."

Ha-Ha, topical humor!

Anyway, I tried to fix it myself, which I'm really not qualified for.

Is there anything you think you can't do?

No.

Is there anything you actually can do?

No. Also, you're an ass.

The situation got worse and worse, until finally my poor little laptop gave up and died late Saturday night. It looked like this:


(actual photo)

Luckily I've backed up most of my data, but there are still some very important files buried somewhere in that broken husk of a laptop. Like 1/4th of my music collection. And my unfinished vampire screenplay. And the map for that treasure I buried. And the launch codes. I desperately hope that those files can be recovered. If not... well I don't even want to think about that.

Sigh. My weekend was all too short, and even though it's perfect Stay-at-Home weather outside I still have to be back at work in my stupid messy cubicle doing my stupid job. I just want to be at home sleeping. Plus some corporate bigwigs are in town all week so I have to be on my best behavior. That means I can't shout out profanity the way I like to, and I have to dress up in a monkey-suit all week.

So that's why I'm grumpy. Who's really to blame for all this? This guy.


Sure, maybe it's crazy to think that the goose is behind all my troubles. But what if I'm right? What if I'm right.



Oooh! What a tragic tale! How will you ever survive? You truly are an inspiration to us all. A real american hero. A man -

Alright alright. Point taken. But It's my blog and I'll whine if I want to.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Everything you know is true

In September of last year I went to Austin, Texas. Why I was there is unimportant. No seriously, don't ask any questions. Okay fine, I went there for a music festival. I was just trying to sound mysterious. Did it work? No? Whatever.

Everything in town is sold out, so I bunker down at the Austin Suites North a few miles from downtown. The lobby smells like pine-sol. No, I mean it really smells like pine-sol.



The first room they put me in does not have a functioning air conditioner. This aggression will not stand. They’re going to send a maintenance man up but instead decide to give me another room, which is fine because the new room is slightly nicer anyway. Well, nice is relative. The kitchen floor is greasy and it has a weirdo smell, but you know, you do what you can.

So I flip on the television set. I will give you exactly one guess as to what is playing.


Give up?


Behold!

Walker is the first of many Texas stereotypes that turn out to be true.
Hey, you know this guy?
Yep. Within walking distance of the motel:

You've heard the phrase: "Everything is bigger in Texas." Don't believe it? Then how do you explain this giant IHOP?

...and the giant pancakes they serve?
Check out this poor guy. He has to stop and rest while hauling his enormous groceries home.

Maybe you also know the phrase "Everything is vaguely shaped like Texas in Texas?"
When in Texas there's no doubt you're in the Bible Belt.


Get a load of this guy. Think I'll strike up a conversation with him.


"Hey buddy. Buddy! Guess it's true what they say. Nothin in Texas but steers and qu- haha, just kidding man. You're all right."

"Seriously though, did you hear that Matthew McConaughey has applied for French Citizenship? True story. Says he hates Texas and everything it stands for. Yep. Hates it. Haaaaa, gotcha!"

"Did you hear the breaking news? Turns out that High School Football suck! AHAHAHAHAHAHA!"

"Speaking of news, I was just reading about the transvestite that's running for Mayor of Austin. That's you, right? What, you mean you’re not a transvestite? Then why are you dressed like a girl?”
"Whoa whoa whoa, settle down man. I'm just giving you a hard time. I love Texas. In fact, Willie Nelson is one of my favorite musicians. Of course for my money the best musicians to ever come out of Texas are the Dixie Chicks. You must be proud to come from the same state as them. Take it easy fella, I'm just messing with you.”

"No I don't want your picante sauce! My picante sauce is way better. It’s made in New York City. Hey sit down! That's a nice hat. What's it say? Oh. Oooooooooooooooooooooh. Shit."










There's a lesson to be learned here.