Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The Last Of The Bus Driver Stories

The most amazing thing happened last week when the bus driver was taking me from the parking lot up to work.

He got lost.

The bus driver got lost. On a 5-block trip that he's been making for the past three years. I had to help him navigate the mean streets until we got back around to his normal route.

Help me flip this thing over before we miss our lightIt was really hard not to laugh.

This is the same guy who once forgot I was on the bus and drove past our stop. He's sat through a green light and bluntly asked me if I dream about the dead.

That will buff outI'm not sure where this ranks on the all-time list of "bus driver" stories, but I figure it's gotta be top 3 at least. And it's the last one.

The city has discontinued the shuttle bus service. From now on I either have to walk from the parking lot, or find a "pay" lot that's closer.

You can't fire me... I quit!So, to all you City of Tulsa taxpayers... thanks for the free ride these past three years! And to the bus driver, I want to say thanks for the memories. I never knew if I would survive riding on your bus, but at least the trip was never dull.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


We bought new porch lights.

Jeff is playing with fire...

I have no idea what I was thinking. Porch lights. Me! I am incapable of even *describing* anything electrical without including the words, "...and stuff".

Thankfully, we were replacing existing lights, not installing new outlets. I didn't have to run any new wires and stuff.

You just *know* that somehow I'm gonna poke myself in the eye with all this stuff, don't you?

The astute viewer will notice that there is no outlet box in that picture. The one thing that I'm pretty sure I understand, and it's not there. Talk about working without a net. And stuff.

This was before the wall burst into flame

There were problems, but nothing to severe. The lights have photo sensors on them, so they don't come on during the day even when you flip the switch. We had to wait until evening to see if I had wired things up correctly. I was a nervous wreck all afternoon.

And stuff.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Act Like A Ninja

Last week, Metacow posted this on his Facebook wall:

Metacow proclaims tomorrow "International Talk Like A Ninja" day."

Despite the obvious wisdom of this, there was some debate in the comments.

Some Guy I didnt know Ninja's talked, cuz they are 'stealthy' and deadly silent....oooooooooo
Some Frat Guy That's true. The last time I was "silent and deadly" was on my way back from Tulsa this weekend, and my buddy was not enthralled!

The event was quickly re-classified as "Act Like A Ninja Day".

A few hours after this thread appeared on Facebook, I was sitting at my desk, quietly creating genius and being awesome. There was a soft "clack" of something landing on my desk, followed by a quick heavy-footed scampering.

Before I even knew what the object was I thought to myself, "What has Big Dawg thrown on my desk?"

The secret is stealthAnd then I saw it. Aw yeah.

Big Dawg mentally went back to middle school just long enough to make a paper throwing star. He wrote "Act Like A Ninja Day" on one side, and "(International)" on the other.

Of course, Big Dawg is appropriately named. Stealth does not come easy to the large ninja. When he crouched down to scamper away, he looked like a bowling ball.

So, I hope you enjoyed International Act Like A Ninja Day. I'm still not entirely sure what day it was exactly, but I got swag!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Christmas Decorations

Apparently it's not too early to start thinking about Christmas decorations. We were at Lowes, where the Christmas aisle is already starting to take shape.

There was Santa, and Frosty, and Reindeer, and of course, the Christmas Hoot Owl.

Is that a Tootsie Roll over there in the snow, or do you have a dog?

I don't really remember very many stories about the Christmas Hoot Owl. But I must admit, he looks a lot more sensible than this inflatable...

I saw your piggy make a wee!

Ah, the Pink Flying Christmas Pig. Terry Pratchett would be so proud.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

We Wii Wee

My wife got an email recently with some very interesting typos at the end. I won't say who it was from, because my wife doesn't want to embarrass the poor soul too much. :)

Spelling and Grammar optionalThe first paragraph of the email was normal. The second paragraph looked OK, but the third paragraph was a copy of it, with typos added. It looked like the third paragraph was a rough draft of the second.

The last line was the best part. It simply said, "wewewewewe wiiiiii".

If that last line is a rough draft, I have no idea what it's for. French enthusiasm? Nintendo Power? A full bladder?

Now when I'm talking to my wife, I'll occasionally throw in a "weee we we we wi!" at the end of a sentence. Just to keep things interesting.

"Dinner was really good tonight, Honey. I love it when WEEEEE wee wii we WEEEEE!"
WEEEEE wee wii we WEEEEE!
"We've got a big deadline at work, and they need me to WEEEEE wee wii we WEEEEE!"

"My fantasy football team really stunk it up last weekend. My season's going strait to WEEEEE wee wii we WEEEEE!"

I highly recommend it. It's a lot of fun if you're bored and want to scare away friends.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Random Pics

A couple of random pics I took while birthday shopping for a one-year-old.

Owie Ook Ow

"Chicks Dig Scars". I love it. The little cartoon monkey even has a big scratch over one eye. I was tempted to buy it for myself.

And then there's this one, which may as well have had P-Ziddy's name engraved on it.

Also, lightning is wicked cool

That Ben Franklin quote is hard to read in the pic, but it goes something like this:

"Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy."

My wife wouldn't let me put the one-year-old's present in that sack. :)

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Of Hope

Last week on Wheel Of Fortune, there was a truly sublime moment.

It started with the final puzzle. The category was "Thing", and the puzzle board looked like this:

Swimmer Of Soap?

The contestant called out "C M P O". The puzzle board looked like this:

Flummer Of Nope?

The solution was "Glimmer Of Hope", but the contestant spazed out and couldn't get it. Toward the end of her 10 seconds she just started shouting stuff, hoping to stumble into the correct answer. Right as the buzzer sounded she yelled, ...


I nearly choked on my dinner. I laughed for a *long* time.

What exactly does a hammer of hope look like? Hm...

I'm going to put a 'collage artist' bullet point on my resume

Monday, September 21, 2009

Ballet Boy

In a stark contrast to this story from last week, I bring you a story today that has absolutely no exaggeration whatsoever. As unbelievable as it may sound, every word of this story is true.

It started one evening with my wife shouting, "Jeff! There are kids in our yard!" We peeked out the windows.

There were two boys, aged approximately 6 and 10. They were putting up every body's mailbox flags. My wife stepped outside and glared at them from the porch. The boys quickly put our flag back down, then ran across the street and sat on the curb.

Where's my tutu? I need a tutu!
My pointe shoes are too tight
A few minutes later my wife peeked out the window again and nearly fell over laughing. "Jeff! One of them is dancing!"

It's a little hard to tell in the pictures, but the younger of the two boys was pirouetting around by our mailbox. He was prancing, leaping, and spinning like a pro. The older boy looked embarrassed.

My wife stepped outside again. This time the boys didn't notice her, but she heard part of their conversation.

"I'm taking ballet at school!"
"Why don't you play sports, man?"
"I like ballet!"

My wife came in and shared the conversation with me. We were both laughing out loud at "our little ballerina" prancing around our front yard. And then, the doorbell rang.

"No way," I said. I ran to the door, concerned that maybe the boys had gone from awkward frolicking to ding-dong-ditch. I opened the door, expecting to see the departing backsides of the two boys. Instead, the youngest one was standing there, politely looking up at me.

"Do you want to watch us do ballet?" he asked.

I put on a moderately stern face. Inside, I was nearly shaking with the effort of not laughing. My mind shouted, "We've been watching you through the window, you little dork!", but my mouth simply said, "No."

The kid was unfazed. "Are you sure?"

I admired his innocent perseverance, although part of me was thinking, "What, you didn't hear me the first time?". Out loud I simply said, "I'm sure. Thank you."

Looks like that drumstick he's holding has throw him off balanceHe shrugged. "OK." He pranced off our porch and started buzzing circles around his desperately embarrassed friend.

We shut the door and I ran to the bathroom. I was laughing so hard I almost had an accident.

"A little boy rang our doorbell and asked if we wanted to watch him do ballet."

Best. Doorbell. Ever.

Friday, September 18, 2009

The Time I Almost Worked For Wal-Mart

Get your stuff and get outSomebody (I don't remember who) recently mentioned the dangers of wearing blue while shopping at Wal-Mart. Apparently she had multiple people come up to her and ask for assistance.

It reminded me of two stories. My brother-in-law wore red at Target once. Customers harassed him, and the cashier asked to see his employee discount card.

And then there was the time I almost worked for Wal-Mart. Sorta.

I was in college, so the differences between night and day meant far less than than they do now. It was 3 AM, and I went to Wal-Mart.

The first thing that struck me was that the customers looked a *lot* rougher and meaner than the normal crowd. Many of them glared at me with open hate in their eyes. I began to fear for my safety.

Visual Aid. You're welcome.I went to the aisle I needed. There were a couple of rough-looking guys who were kicking a "Hand Pallet Truck" and cursing loudly at each other, the product shelves, some empty boxes, me, and literally everything else around them.

As I looked for whatever it was I was hoping to buy, a manager came over to the aisle. "You two, get to work!", he shouted at the malcontents. They grumbled and started pushing the hand truck toward the back of the store. He looked at me next. "You too! Lazy idiot! Get to work!"

It was then that I realized Wal-Mart had no dress code for its employees at 3 AM.

I grabbed my item and pushed past the manager. "Shove it. I quit."

It felt good. :)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Jump! Jump!

My wife came home the other day and started a conversation with the phrase, "I hope you don't mind..." The really *good* conversations always start out like this.

Fear meIt turns out she bought a jump rope.

You see, we have a buddy who recently bought a treadmill. We've actually talked about getting one, but even the relatively "low" expense of a bottom-of-the-line model is more than we'd like to voluntary dish out.

So my wife saw jump ropes at the store and decided to give it a try. If it works out for us, it'll be a way to exercise indoors for less than 4 bucks.

My wife tried it first. We're both out of practice by a couple of decades, but she did pretty well. Then it was my turn.

I believe I can fly?I never really liked that light fixture.

I was amazed at how hard it is to jump rope post-childhood. This isn't like riding a bike. This is much more traumatic. The whip marks on my ankles made it look like I'd just escaped a prison camp. I nearly decapitated myself twice. I lost a finger.

My wife's goal is try to stay in shape. My goal is to make the bleeding stop.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

A Lofty Goal

Exaggeration is a key technique in any comedic endeavor. For example, most of what I write is at least partially true. But the story is never quite as funny until I say something wild to take it over the top.

The story of P-Ziddy's lifeComedic exaggeration often creeps into my everyday conversations. I've been known to say all kinds of outlandish things. "Our customers probably know best", "I can easily make that deadline", and "I value your opinion" are just a few examples.

I was walking back from the break room carrying my small mug of tea and my large mug of water. As I walked past, one of my co-workers saw me and asked, "Why do you drink so much?"

"I'm training my bladder to be really stretchy," I responded. "My goal is to be able to drink 8 glasses of water a day and only have to go to the bathroom twice a week."

You can always find a way to fail, it seemsI think he believed me. Now, every time I get up to go to the bathroom he shakes his head sadly and makes "tsk tsk" noises.

I'm such a disappointment.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


I got a box of decaf teas that was labeled "fruit sampler". I'm not generally a big fan of fruit-flavored teas, but figured it was worth a try.

I've never *really* trusted fruitThe adventure started with "True Blueberry." I dropped in the tea bag and the hot water prompted turned blood red. I'm no fruit expert, and I wasn't expecting windshield-washer-fluid blue or anything, but bright red did throw me off a bit.

It also turned the bottom of my mug red, even after I'd drank all the tea. I had to wash it out with soap. Wow.

Up next was the "Black Cherry" flavor. OoRah was in the break room with me when I tried this one. I dropped in the tea bag and he said "Wow... that smells an awful lot like the kind of pipe tobacco I used to smoke." He had a happy smile on his face, his eyes glazed over with fond memories.

Oh yeah?I disrupted his blissful trance-like state. "I think it smells like a flavor of Kool-aid I used to drink a lot."

OoRah blinked. "Uh... yeah. Sure. That too." He didn't sound impressed.

Hot Kool-Aid. Yum.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Elderly Woman vs Rock Star Waiter

I'll give you a hefty 'tip' you won't soon forget, Sonny-Boy!I'll take those plates if your done with them, GrannyMy wife went to lunch with an elderly friend of ours. For the most part they had a nice time, although our friend did nearly kill the waiter.

He was a young punk, cocky, with an earring and a permanent casual oblivious head-bobbing smile. Our friend is a very old woman who has uttered the phrase "kids these days" more than a few times. Conflict was inevitable.

It started early when he called her "Grandma". Her violent unblinking glare could have melted steel. He didn't seem to notice.

He actually was a very good waiter. He never stopped smiling and kept their glasses full. He also kept calling our friend "Grandma" and half-danced everywhere he walked. He obviously had a tune stuck in his head and was enjoying every minute of it.

"I can't stand that boy!", our friend confessed. My wife tried not to say anything. It had been pretty obvious to everyone except the waiter that violence was the only possible conclusion to the meal. Even folks from the taco stand across the street were lining up to watch the fireworks.

"...AND I need another napkin!", our exasperated friend continued. At that moment, the waiter appeared. "Sure thing, Grandma," he happily agreed.

Separate checks or I'll cut you!The dam broke. Our friend smashed her water glass against the table and held the broken shards out toward him like a club. "I am NOT your Grandma!", she roared. "I need more napkins and a little respect! My vegetables were cold! My hip hurts! Don't make me come over there, Junior!"

The waiter continued to bob his head to the music only he could hear. His vacant smile never wavered. "Can do," he happily agreed. He winked at my wife and glided away.

Our elderly friend burned down the restaurant on her way out. She also refused to leave the waiter a tip.

Friday, September 11, 2009

I Have A Habit...

I have a habit when I'm in the bathroom at work and somebody else walks in. I tap my foot a couple of times. Not loudly, and not because I'm a Republican senator looking for a date. It's just enough to non-verbally pass the message that this bathroom is not unoccupied.

Ninjas onlySee, the stalls have doors that can be shut, thus passing along the message nicely. But the one lone wall urinal is packed away in a far corner, and you can't see if anybody is standing there until it's almost too late. I've had bathroomers (I made a new word!) nearly walk into me while I was doing my thing because normally I am silent like the ninja.

Anyway, I was in position and the bathroom door opened. I picked up one foot and lost my balance. I stumbled and stomped hard on the tile to keep from falling. "WHAM!"

Rosebud!...It was awkward, but the point was made. The newcomer took his place in one of the stalls.

The guy managed to identify me, though. Later, he approached me. "Why did you stomp like that?" "Well," I explained, "I wanted to let you know that I was there so you wouldn't walk into me."

"Oh," said the guy. "Pointless, though. I needed one of the stalls anyway."

I was unfazed. "Yes, but how could *I* know that? When you first walk in, you're nameless and faceless. The burden of revelation is on you at that point. You'd have to throw open the door of the bathroom..." I tossed my arms wide in demonstration, "...and announce, I'M HERE TO POOP!"
And now, I loudly make an unfortunate announcement
I had raised my voice dramatically. My arms were stretched wide, my head thrown back in shameless "Game Show Announcer" mode. And I was at the entrance of my cubical.

I didn't bother to respond to the stares. I doubt I could have said anything to sway a jury on the matter anyway.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Unprovable Claims

Somebody left the refrigerator door open againI heard a guy talking about the Luxor Hotel in Las Vegas the other day. He mentioned the big light at the top of the pyramid... it is claimed to be the brightest light in the world at more than 42 billion candlepower. Supposedly it is visible from space.

At that point in the discussion, he chuckled and said, "Of course, you can claim a lot of things if they can't be tested."

Yeah, you know right where *my* mind went. "Pointless Comedy Exercise! Squeee!"

Wild Claims That You Cannot Disprove
Yeah, but don't try it at home
The eye of most hurricanes contains near-perfect conditions for spinning straw into gold.

Every time you cut a blade of grass, an angel in Heaven gets a sudden itch in the middle of his back.

There's actually a small segment of the US population who get nauseous every time they hear the Price Is Right announcer say, "Come on down!"

Flowers don't actually smell nice. They have hypnotic powers to make you *think* they smell nice.

At any given moment, odds are better than 50/50 that I am thinking about cream cheese.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Doomsday Prediction

Beware, everybody! I have had a glimpse of the future!

I predict DOOMI considered not sharing this info, but my conscience won't let me. There's nothing you can do, but at least if you have some advance notice you can spend your final hours hugging your loved ones.

The world will end. I've seen it. The date of our shared doom is July 17th, 2007.

On July 17th, 2007, the world will end. I'm certain of it. I saw in some tea leaves... well, actually, in the greasy patterns at the bottom of a pot of Mac and Cheese. Those of you who have had your Mac and Cheese speak to you know what I'm talkin' about.

Get your lederhosen ready!I'm pretty sure it all starts as a result of a failed diplomatic mission to Liechtenstein. The ambassador's daughter takes great offense when her name is mispronounced as Häagen-Dazs, and it all goes downhill from there. We never should have messed around with a doubly landlocked alpine microstate, I guess.

Anyway, I just felt it was my duty to let you all know what is coming. July 17th, 2007... mark it on your calendars. Weep for the future.

Fear the peanuts!Bonus Silliness

I overheard a little boy at Logan's Roadhouse shout, "Stop sucking on the peanuts!"

I don't *think* he was talking to me...

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

The Meeting That Wasn't

I was at work, happily typin' away when it arrived.

I *still* think this thing looks like a crushed soda canA meeting invitation popped into my inbox. It said we'd meet at 10:30 in the lobby and walk over to the BOK Center (it's only two blocks from my office).

I looked at the clock. It was 10:15.

I looked at the recipient list. All of them were people I know and have worked with, but not on any recent projects.

Humiliation awaitsSo... a last-minute meeting invite with no reason attached. I walked down to the lobby, deciding that I would ask what the meeting was for on the way over.

The lobby was empty except for a security guard. "I think I'm supposed to meet someone here," I said, feeling like an idiot. The guard grinned. "Personals ad work out for ya?"

Correct me if I'm wrong, but you're a dork, aren't you?I was starting to feel like a practical joke victim. "I got a meeting invite, but I'm not entirely sure with who or why." My voice trailed off pathetically. The lobby looked nothing like a conference room.

The guard was laughing openly by now. "You'll believe anything, won't you?", he asked. "I heard your meeting was moved to the generator room in the basement. You're about to be promoted to a position where money falls from the sky and you never have to do anything. Also, that shirt and those socks look really nice together."

Nerds have feelings too!I ran out of the lobby crying.

I found out later that the meeting was the next day, and that I had been invited by mistake.

I never found out what the meeting was for.

Monday, September 07, 2009

Labor Day

Happy Labor Day!

Happy Labor Day!

See ya tomorrow!

Friday, September 04, 2009

Police Report

Sometimes the Police Report has outstanding things in it.

5:54 p.m. — 11606 E. 86 St. N. Goldie’s Patio Grill. Two women reportedly fighting in middle of road. Handled.

I'd like to think this started at the pickle bar. Lady 1 was getting 'sauced on the dills when Lady 2 tried to change songs on the jukebox. She picked a song that Lady 1 didn't like. Harsh words were exchanged. A bowl of sweet gherkin was spilled. A chair was thrown. The bartender shouted at them to take their fight outside.
Right idea... wrong franchise
Then again, maybe there's a simpler explanation. Maybe the fight dialog was something along the lines of, "You ate my burger!" and "Did not!".

Then there's this entry from the same police log...

3:25 p.m. — 12041 E. 96 St. N. F&M Bank. Report of a bat hanging on a wall "right on numbers." Handled. Bat in custody.
Greetings young mortal... do you take cash, or credit?
I was unimpressed until I got to the end. "Bat in custody". Wow. Do they really think somebody is going to come by and make bail? Who would be willing to make bail for a bat?

I have a mental picture of a bat in jail, running a metal cup across the bars and shouting, "Hey Warden! What's a bat gotta do to get some mosquitoes around here?"


Since it's Friday, I'll go ahead and give you a bonus:

Dang the luck...

Finally, someone has managed to photograph the pot at the end of the rainbow...

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Two Little Sillies

I've mentioned before that I'm occasionally a little dyslexic. Usually just enough to cause momentary confusion, followed by mild amusement. With that in mind, I saw this survey card at a local Quiznos shop...

Toasty?... or Nasty?

I misread it. I swear I thought it said I could win something "nasty". I actually pondered that for a minute before I realized my mistake. I was trying to figure out if the food I ordered could fall under that category.

Speaking of "nasty", I think this might qualify...

Hubba hubba

My wife found this in the store and took a pic' for me. I'm pretty sure it's a health drink of some kind. I'm not going to Google it, beause I don't think it would be on the first page of search results.

I can't help but wonder, though... with a name like "Naked", why is there a label on the bottle?

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Bus Ride Demolition Derby

I've blogged about my bus ride between the parking lot at work and my office before. Most of the time, the shuttle driver is sane and the trip uneventful.

Sometimes, though, the poor guy just seems to be in a weird mood. Recently, Powerama and I got onto the bus and settled down for the ride to work. The driver slammed hard on the gas and the bus lunged toward the stop sign. Then, he stood on the breaks. We were all thrown forward and then snapped back into our seats. The driver hit the gas again, pinning us down and taking our breath away.

Luckily, I provide my own transportationEvery time there was a stop light or a stop sign, it was the same adventure. We went over a bridge that crossed some railroad tracks, and as we sailed over the top we could see the traffic light down at the end of the block turn red. The bus driver floored it. The engine literally whined with the effort of acceleration. Several seconds beyond the last possible second, the driver hit the breaks. How we managed to stop in time, I'll never know. Superman must have been involved.

He died as he lived... crying like a baby and screaming in terrorEventually, we arrived at work. We all disembarked, wobbling slightly at the knees. Once we were out of earshot, Powerama looked at me and said, "I think the driver is concerned that he'll retire before he gets a chance to actually kill someone."

That afternoon as I was leaving work, I saw the bus sitting there waiting. "What the heck," I figured. "I survived the morning trip, how much worse can this one be?" As I approached the bus, the driver hopped off and ran to the back of his bus. He saw me and smiled. He pointed at the recently torn-up panels near the end of the bus.

Please... don't hurt me..."Lookit 'dis!" he gleefully shouted. "After you got off the bus 'dis mornin', I ran over that road sign there!"

I looked back. The temporary "Road Work Ahead" sign had one leg that was sticking out at an odd angle. "It tore up my bus! Ain't that somethin'? Well, let's go."

I'm lucky to be alive.