Monday, February 28, 2011


Remember when I mentioned my most recent ailment? Turns out, the pain in my hinder is caused by three pinched nerves in my back.

I spent lots of time last week with a Chiropractor, getting my back "adjusted" (pounded mercilessly) and learning many things about "Posture" (I thought it was a special kind of Greek Salad).

Hulk Adjust L3 Vertebrae!
For most of the week the 'doc would push lightly on my back before going all "Incredible Hulk" on me and pushing so hard my stomach would punch through the table. On Thursday he changed the game plan a bit by putting me on my side.

"Now," he told me, "Let's move this leg over here and this arm over there and pull your foot up and grab your elbow and..."

When he was done I looked like a pretzel. "I'm gonna lean on you here," he explained. Then he more or less climbed up onto the table with me.

I was thinking, "Shouldn't I get dinner and a movie first?..." when the cracking noises started. My spine did a little rendition of the cannon blasts from Tchaikovski's 1812 Overture.

Apparently that's what needed to happen, because the doctor was grinning like a maniac. At least, I *hope* that's why he was grinning.

Wish me luck, the fun starts again today. How many weeks before I'm cured (or he kills me)? Place your bets!


Friday, February 25, 2011

Stories From My Past: The Subtle Groomsman

These things don't vandalize themselves!
This happened back in college... I was the Best Man for a friend's wedding. Generally, events happened about as you'd expect them to. A group us were sitting at a table during the reception when a problem presented itself: No one had decorated the getaway car.

Several of the guys had brought along supplies for just such a need, but how could we get out to the parking lot without drawing attention to ourselves? Then, a glorious idea was born. We decided not to hide.

There were 6-8 of us at the table, including my old buddy Midnight Brewer. We all stood up at the same time and then marched single-file out of the reception hall. I could hear laughter behind us as we left.

We drew on the windows and attached streamers and all that good stuff. When we came back into the reception hall, we walked single-file back to our chairs and all sat down at the same time.

I proclaim innocence
Midnight Brewer went above and beyond, attaching a streamer of toilet paper to the heel of his shoe. Nobody will suspect what we've been up to. It was a nice touch.

The Groom came over to our table on our return. He leaned over Midnight Brewer and asked, "What are you guys up to?"

"Us? Nothing."

"I see that TP there on your shoe." Midnight Brewer didn't even look down. "We all went to the bathroom together. Perfectly normal."

Groom wasn't buying it. "You all went to the bathroom together, just like a crowd of women?" "Yes." "But you're not all women." "Thanks for noticing."

Despite heavy interrogation, we never admitted to our obvious crimes.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

You Never Call

Respect mah authority!
I was deep in the bowels of the office when I ran into two of my favorite people... "Large" and "In Charge".

Large spread his arms expansively. "Hey!", he roared. "It's Jeff!"

I acted hurt. "You never call!", I complained at him. "You never write!"

Large grinned. "Just like how my family treats me."

In Charge chuckled. "No one wants to talk to you."

That's good enough for me...
Large ignored him and kept speaking to me. "How are you doing down there in your fancy office? Eatin' girl scout cookies and looking out the window?"

I nodded. "I might even turn my computer on this afternoon."

In Charge chuckled again. "Must be nice."

Can I get some pink armor?
Large continued to ignore him. "Oh, are you going to play a little Halo this afternoon?"

"If the mood strikes me."

In Charge shook his head. "Man, I haven't played Halo in years!" Large acted like he didn't hear him.

Eventually we parted company. In Charge was trailing Large like a shadow, chattering endlessly. I'm not convinced that Large knew he was there.

Monday, February 21, 2011

What's In A Name?

One day last week, most of the co-workers in my department went to lunch together. For some reason, names were being discussed. This reminded M16 of a story.

"We had a programming class at my last job," he explained. "The instructor was named 'Mustafa', and he looked and sounded like a terrorist. We were all a little afraid of him."

We all laughed. "So," I pondered, "If you don't properly close your 'FOR' loop, the bomb might go off early?"

Everybody laughed again. Ah, nerd humor.

M16's story reminded me of another, so I shared it. "(former co-worker) Farmer used to work with a guy from India named 'Mahboob'. He said one day Mahboob was out of the office and a little old lady from another department came looking for him. She was angry about something, and when she encountered the empty desk she started shouting "Where's Mahboob? WHERE?!? Where's Mahboob?!?"

My hip hurts! Why?!?
If you don't get that joke, then say it out loud when no kids are around. :) Farmer said he was laughing too hard to give her a helpful reply.

After a while, the boss stood up. "Sorry," he said when he heard the groans. "Somebody's gotta end the party."

As our crowd of more than 20 left, a guy who was trying to come in got stuck holding the door for us. His eyes kept getting wider as more and more of us filed out. It was like clowns out of a rodeo car.

I need a TPS report, stat!
"Is there a fire?", he asked. "A small one," I replied.

"Yeah," agreed OoRah. "It was lit under my hinder when the boss stood up."

The less said about OoRah's hinder, the better.

Friday, February 18, 2011

At The Movies

How many of you have heard of the band "School Gyrls"?

My wife and I went to the movies, and their song "Going to the mall" was playing over the Movie Tunes station before the previews started.

It's a bit repetitive (*cough* *understatement* *cough*). 20 seconds is all you really need to get the general idea. I'm sorry in advance for what this "song" will do to your nerves.

Less than a minute in my wife and I were digging fingernails into the armrests. "This isn't a song," I whined. "This is a melody-vacant abomination!" Around us, heads were nodding in agreement.

About three minutes in, despair had fully enveloped me. As the refrain "Goin' to the mall! Goin' to the mall!" wrapped around for about the 600'th time I loudly pondered, "Gee, I wonder where they're going?"

One teenage girl in the crowd glared at me like I was the devil. She appeared to be the only dissenter.

Don't touch my leg. Seriously. Don't make me call security.
Outside the theater was a life-size cut-out poster of Justin Bieber, advertising his "Never say Never" movie. When we went into our movie, there were two teenage girls standing on either side of him, one arm outstretched, trying to take a cell phone pic of the three of them.

As we left our movie, we passed a lady who was posing her two little girls next to the Bieb-inator. The littlest was probably 4 years old. As the mom steadied her camera, she told the little girl, "Put your arm around his leg."

The 4-year old looked over at Bieber and said, "Ew."

Smart kid. :)

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


Rachel Ray, eat your heart out
We went to a church lunch banquet last weekend that was catered by a local Italian place. Pasta, bread, pizza, and so on. It was pretty good.

The church had the right idea too... paper plates and plastic forks and disposable tablecloths. Cleanup was going to be a cinch, with one small snag. There must not be ANY leftovers.

The first time through the line we all got a scoop of pasta and a slice of pizza. Anyone who went through a second time got a softball-sized lump of pasta and four "Oops! They're stuck together tee-hee!" slices of pizza.

The pastor commented toward the end, "Everybody please take some leftovers home with you... slip it in a pocket, enjoy it later." One of the guys we sat with pantomimed sticking a slice of pizza in his pocket.

I washed my hands... I think...
I had no pocket, so I pantomimed pulling something out of the neck of my shirt. "Here," I said, holding out my hand. "I brought home some pasta."

Three people at my table gagged, hard. It was glorious. Then, one of the ladies at the table topped me.

"It gives a whole new meaning to 'Angel Hair' pasta...", she said.

I gagged, hard.

Monday, February 14, 2011

It's The Simple Things

We will do righteous battle!
Our old buddy Lightyear came by the office last week, ready to pick a fight. He walked right up to OoRah's desk and announced, "I've been listening to your buddy Rush Limbaugh..."

OoRah chuckled and said, "I didn't know he was a personal friend...", but Lightyear was all wound up and didn't even notice.

"... and Rush says the situation is in Egypt is ALL Obama's fault! Now, how can it ALL be Obama's fault?!?"

Also, Dork.
OoRah happily took the bait. "It IS all his fault. The previous 8 years, everything was Bush's fault so now it all has to be Obama's fault."

Lightyear paused, momentarily taken aback. "So, the sinking of the Titanic?..."

OoRah didn't even blink. "Yes. The president at the time, it was all his fault. Ever since 'The Buck Stops Here', that's how it works."

There was a brief moment of "You know, I really can't argue that" on Lightyear's face, and then he switched effortlessly into Presidential Trivia mode. "You know, I liked Truman. I also liked what Roosevelt said; 'Speak softly and carry a big stick'."

OoRah, former Marine, grinned big and nodded like a bobble-head. "I like that one, too!"

Now that they'd found common ground, Lightyear migrated all the way over to story-telling mode. "I liked Roosevelt. He kept things simple. Simple!, you know? It's just like when Rassui kidnapped Preticarus, and they asked [???] what he wanted, you know what he said?"

Suddenly, none of us had a clue what Lightyear was talking about. I honestly didn't even catch that third name he threw out there. Lightyear didn't notice the confusion from his audience, so he continued:

"He said, I want Preticarus alive, or I want Rassui dead. See? Simple."

E Z Bake
Uh. Yeah.

Lightyear said his goodbye's and left the office. I turned to OoRah. "I thought Rassui was an animated movie about a rat who cooks."

I have searched the mighty internets and I can't find anything about a "Rassui" or a "Preticarus". Does anybody out there know what Lightyear was talking about?


Friday, February 11, 2011

LEGO Friday

Some random LEGO stuffs for your Friday.

A Lego Cell Phone.

Outstanding! I'd have to go with "Circle, circle, dot, dot" as the ring tone, naturally. :)

LEGO Rings!

Nothing says "I love you" like itty bitty LEGO bricks on your fingers.

LEGO Guitar!

I wanna see this thing get smashed on stage at the end of the show. :) Bricks everywhere! Whoo-hoo!

LEGO Bobba Fett costume!

Too cute for words!

And finally... the world's most useless LEGO machine. You turn it on, and it turns itself off. Kinda reminds me of the dance I do with my alarm clock each morning. :)

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

I Made Snowballs In Scruffy's Attic

Lemmie 'splain.

Like most of Oklahoma, we were snowed in for a lot of last week. My region here averages around 9 inches of snow each winter... we had 15 inches in the yard, with 21 inch drifts.

Scruffy called. "My ceiling is leaking! Help!"

Now, I don't know who *you* call first when you have potential roof damage, but I bet it's not me. However, with roads so desperately clobbered, I was the best Scruffy could manage.

I walked the couple of blocks over to his house. He showed me the leaky room. "Do you think it's the roof?" I know just enough about roofs to know that it could be anything from an Ice Dam to a "Whoops, sorry, your roof has turned to tofu and will need to be replaced".

"Can you go up in the attic and find the leak?"

He wasn't exactly asking an expert, but there were no alternatives. Up we went.

We found snow in Scruffy's attic. It had blown in through his roof vent. "Can we get that outta here?", Scruffy asked. "We need to, but how?" Scruffy pondered this. "Walmart sacks and spoons?"

Even now, nearly a week later, I have no response for that.

We eventually opt'ed for a Shop Vac. There was enough snow that we plugged up the Shop Vac and had to resort to grabbing lumps by hand.

While we were working, my cell phone rang. I couldn't resist. I answered and said, "I'm up in a neighbor's attic!"

"Um... why?" I grinned. "They're making out. I'm watchin'."

Scruffy laughed so hard that he put a foot through his ceiling.

Lesson learned: Blizzards in Oklahoma stink, and Jeff is better at roofs than you think. But not by much.

Monday, February 07, 2011


Oklahomans have no idea how to prepare for a Blizzard.

And honestly, why would we? They don't call this a "100 year blizzard" because it *lasted* 100 years. (Kinda started to feel like it after a while, though)

The snow dropped on Tuesday. We finally made it to the store Saturday. It was quite a spectacle.

In one store there was a refrigerated compartment full of milk with an employee standing in front of it like a bank guard. "We can't sell this milk, there's something wrong with it, we have to send it back."

Despite her warning, the "I want milk" crowd looked like they might charge.

In another store there was a single lonely half-gallon of soy milk, unwanted and unloved. Poor milk.

I saw a display of Red Diamond Iced Tea next to some empty shelves. I was tempted to load up a cart with nothing but the tea gallons and see what kind of reactions I'd get.

We saw a guy with a shopping cart half full of bananas, and half full of bread. He was being chased by some angry shoppers fresh out of the now-empty bread aisle.

We're pretty well dug out now, but I see more snow in the forecast for Wednesday. Should be interesting, but don't worry about us. If another blizzard comes, we'll have enough iced tea to last at least three weeks.

Friday, February 04, 2011


Show Me Your ID

Would you accept a bribe?
My wife went to the store to buy stuff for Tacos. When she got to the register the lady said, "I need to see your ID."

There was a stunned pause. "Uh... why?"

"I don't know," the register lady confessed. "The machine just came up and said I have to see your ID."

"Are these age-restricted taco shells?" The checkout lady stammered, "I... I don't know."

We pulled the blinds when we ate them, just in case.

I'm being REPLACED?!?

I was talking with Big Dawg about a project at work. I mentioned a code change I was working on.

OoRah interrupted us. "Goat change?", he asked. He had misheard me, and was genuinely confused.

I had no mercy. "Yeah, I'm changing my goat. I'm not happy with the one I've got now."

Splish, splash!
In The Potty

I was in the bathroom the other day, and a guy in the one of the stalls took a phone call.

That just seems so awkward to me. I don't ever wanna be "that guy" who talks on the phone while doing his doo-ty.

"Hi! That splashing noise? Oh, I'm poolside, relaxing. Yeah, and that one was thunder. It's a little overcast here."


I was standing in the middle of the office with OoRah and M16, waiting on the boss to get back. We expected him back any minute, but after about 10 minutes of standing around it became obvious that Murphy's Law was in effect.

I'll open up Solitaire... that should bring him runnin'
"He's waiting. He'll come back when I'm comfortable at my desk."

There was general agreement. I wandered back to my desk saying, "Ha! The joke's on him! He doesn't realize that I'm never comfortable."

OoRah and M16 both chuckled. Later, when I told my wife the story, she didn't.

I admit, the joke was weak. I'm not worried though... You've probably stopped reading by now anyway. :)

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

True Grip

Arnold Schwarzenegger hands these things out as party favors
I've been considering getting a pair of Hand Grips. I used to have one, but I lost it long ago.

I hopped online to see what I could find. I was surprised by the number of web pages I found with exercise routines for your hands and forearms.

One in particular really cracked me up. The guy started out his page by saying, "Forearms are the only body parts that matter at all!" "Forearms are the coolest!" "I love my forearms!" This guy had a serious love affair with his dangling pre-fingers. I got a little uncomfortable just reading it. It made me want to pull my sleeves down for modesty's sake.

He was so happy about his forearms that he decided to list off "a couple of exercises" you can do to strengthen them. There were 20 items. I'd hate to see his long list.

This thing seriously frightens me
He also listed off 5 or 6 different hand grip exercise tools. One of them looked like a "normal" hand grip but required 300 pounds pressure per square inch to close it. Yikes! He also had one that looked like a converted bear trap. It was a monstrous U-shaped thing that had tension rods and springs and dials all over it. It looked like the machine that killed Rube Goldberg.

As hilariously obsessive as his list was, one thing did stand out to me. In order to prove the value of forearm strength, he suggested that you take 20 pounds off of your "normal" bench-press bar, and try to lift it without tightly gripping the bar.

I have no bench-press equipment. But, as you might recall, I do have those "Perfect Push-up" rotating handles. Hm...

Help! I'm stuck!
I set up the handles and got into position. I loosened my grip as much as I dared and started the process. One hand slipped, and my wrist made an unhealthy "crack" noise. Of course, it was hard to hear it over the screaming. I lay on the floor for a while and cried.

Later, I tried again. I gripped the handles as hard as I could. Something in my forearms went "squidge". Now my fingers won't uncurl.

Stupid forearms.