There's 12 hours left of 2006. An average year at best for me. A better year for some of you. Here's to 2007 being a year of change (at least for me) and to 2007 being crazy delicious for everyone.
Remember how I said we at Z'Tejas were adopting a children's shelter for Xmas? Well, there was a little write up in Costa Mesa's local paper, Daily Pilot, that mentioned our efforts. There was a picture, too.
Can you tell who that is is the beard & wig?
That was a great day. We brought a lot of joy to a bunch of kids who would otherwise have had none. And can you believe the name on that little one in the pic? not only is his name "Little Timmy," it's also "Saint Nick." Can't get any more 'Xmas' than that.
By Jeff @ 1:34 PM
I received a notice from T-Mobile stating that Orange County is looking to implement an area code change that would affect those in 714. Like you and I. More info can be found at www.cpuc.ca.gov/714areacode. There's maps and such at the site. The new area code in affected areas will be "657." Just thought some of you might like to know.
By Jeff @ 1:09 PM
I spoke to Adam this past weekend, and he's said there's no new developments in the search for his father, David Boone, who went missing three weeks ago today. If I hear any news, I will absolutely post it here. Please keep the Boone's in your thoughts.
By Jeff @ 5:06 PM
/ o \
/- o -\
/ o \
/- o o-\
/ o o \
/ o o \
/- o -\
/ o o \
/o o \
/ o \
Santa is en route to our house, and yours. Only if you've been good (I've been good). I hope your Xmas is wonderful. If you don't celebrate the season, then enjoy your Monday off.
If anyone's looking for something to do tomorrow night, feel free to come over to my place after dinner, where we'll have plenty of drink, dessert, good company, and Samichlaus (one night only!). Come over whenever you want, just call first if you can. If you don't know where I live, just drop me a line and I'll set you up.
By Jeff @ 12:43 AM
Merry Xmas Eve, all. Here's to all of you who've stuck with me through my first 10 beer reviews. I didn't think I'd have it in me to stick with it this long. Thanks to all who've helped shape my reviews into what they've become.
And awaaaay we go...
Originally what piqued my interest in this ale, hand-crafted in Berkeley, CA, was the fact that it's a "barleywine" ale. I've never tasted a barleywine beer before, so I couldn't resist. And like I said in my post the other day, "I bought this one because it made me think of Hobbits." How could I not give in to my nerdiness? On closer inspection of the bottle, I find that Bison's Organic Barleywine Ale*** is made from 100% organic ingredients: Water, Organic Malt, Organic Hops, _____, Yeast. The "____" is due to a tear in the label that I couldn't repair. This one's even approved by the USDA as being 100% organic. And damn it if it doesn't taste great.
Out of the bottle, it's an ale brown. Nothing exciting, but it holds a head. Held up to the light, it's a very cloudy ale, where I was expecting something a little more red or wine colored. It looks similar to a cloudy glass of iced tea. Not altogether appetizing, but I'm happy to take a bullet for all of you loyal readers.
It's similar to an India Pale Ale at first smell & taste, with a ton of fruit notes & hops, but it's not overpoweringly bitter like an IPA can be. It's pleasantly sweet at first, and very light in the mouth, then you get hit with much hops. After swallowing, there's a quick slap in the face of bitter, which I always enjoy. I'll be honest, if I had known it was similar to an IPA, I might've stayed away from it because of the lack of difference I've noticed between different IPAs, but I'm glad I bought it. It may have restored my faith in an IPA style beer. There's a very carbonated mouth feel, which adds to the aforementioned lightness. It's a very easy-drinking beer, and I'm looking forward to my second glass.
A quick swirl in my goblet-style glass kicks up an amazing scent. This is quite an aromatic beer. The aroma adds to it, but it smells somewhat better than it tastes. That's not to say it tastes bad, it just smells amazing. If I were to get crazy and pair a course to a meal with this beer (if I were to ever put on a beer dinner or something), this one would definitely go with an appetizer course. Not something to have with an entree. Some starter dish with a little spice in it would be perfect. Just be sure to leave a little left in the bottom of the bottle. There's a few grain particles floating around my glass, which is standard with these hand-crafted, high ABV beers (this is a lesson I'm having trouble getting used to).
When most people think of beer, they think cheap, easy to drink, and what gets you drunk quickly. This one's not a sit-around-and-get-tanked beer. There's more to it than that. If your Coors Light or MGD is the example of a sedentary lifestyle, this is one for those looking to develop a finer palate for beers and ales. If your connoisseurship permits, please check out Bison's Barleywine Ale. Bottom line, however: It's not the best ale I've reviewed, and though tasty, I won't regret it if I can't get to it again.
1.0 is perfect in each category,
0.1 is the complete opposite of perfect.
Use your imagination for everything between.
The perfect beer would be scored "4.0/4"
Bison Organic Barleywine Ale, 9.5% ABV.
By Jeff @ 9:59 PM
I went to get some Chipotle today. Parking was a bitch. I saw a space open up one lane over, and I went for it. Apparently, this couple in a silver SUV had been "waiting" for it. Incidentally, when I saw it open up there was no one waiting. I took it, to a cacophony of honks and swears. I said 'whatever,' and went to get a burrito. While I'm in line, waiting to pay, the female from the SUV walks up to me, punches my shoulder and says "You Asshole!". Being the loud man I am, I say:
Excuse me?! How DARE you put your hands on me,
You BITCH!! Who do you think you are?!
Bear in mind that I said this in the middle of a crowded Chipotle restaurant, 15 or so people behind me in line, and another 20-30 in the place.
So the question is, "Who was wrong?"
And yes, I realize this is not an appropriate way for Santa Claus to act. I wasn't in costume.
By Jeff @ 2:05 PM
In 9 hours, the restaurant I work for is adopting an OC children's shelter for Xmas. We're providing an Xmas for them that they'd otherwise not have. Tree, presents, and maybe even some food. Yours truly has volunteered to be Santa Claus for a day. I'll tell you all how it went later this weekend.
I'm all stocked up for a slew of Winter-time beer reviews. I've lined up 5 brews for everyone.
In no particular order:
Flying Bison Barleywine - Buffalo, NY
I bought this one because it made me think of Hobbits. I've never had anything to do with Barleywine, so this one'll be interesting to try.
El Jefe Weizen - Seattle, WA
I had to get this one. "Jefe" is probably the only nickname that's stuck with me since Spanish 1 at Canyon High, and when I saw it on this beer, I couldn't resist.
Samichlaus - Oesterreich, Austria
I only learned of Samichlaus (pron: "Sammy-Claus") earlier this week from BrainOfJ of BKV.TV. Not only is it purported to be the rarest beer in the world, it's also said to be the world's strongest at 14% Alcohol-by-volume. If you happen to read this, this is your invitation to my house on Xmas to have some. Anything left over gets put away until Xmas '07. I've already had one bottle, but you're going to have to wait for my review to know if it doesn't suck.
Reaper Ritual Dark Ale - Vista, CA
Yes, the same Reaper as the Redemption Red from my 8th review. Reaper: The Sequel. This is their dark ale. I liked the red so much, I felt compelled to get this one. Expect a slew of Reaper reviews in the coming months. Apparently Reaper cancelled the contract they had with their brewer, so I'm gonna try to buy one of each of their brews before the're completely gone.
Hitachino Nest White Ale - Kounsosu, Japan
And in the spirit of giving a previously reviewed brewery another fair shake, I picked up a bottle of Kiuchi Brewery's Hitachino White Ale. I was fucking stoked when I saw this today. I can't wait to try it. Let's not forget that the Red Rice Ale spawned not only my current review system, but my secret desire to try all the Japanese brews you've never heard of.
We all have a lot of beer to look forward to this season. Here's to life and friends: May there always be plenty of cold beer in both.
By Jeff @ 9:38 PM
It started out plain enough. We went to a neighbor's house for a party of sorts for my mom's colleague. But the more the dream progressed, the more drunk people got. I went out to the garage fridge for a beer, and saw someone crawling inside it. I went to check it out, and there was a room inside the fridge they were crawling into (cause there were shelves in the fridge. Like, with a table, chairs, and a fridge of it's own. As the dream progressed, the room got bigger, and it opened up into a secret/hidden room inside the house. And everyone for the party was there in the fridge.
Then Jason Statham showed up. He came with his family, in some classic/hot rod car I'm not even sure exists in real life. We talked cars, and then we drank beer. Another friend joined the mix at some point. I got a call from a friend (I think it was Megan), and Jason Statham and the other friend kept yelling at the phone, so I had to end the call. Once off, I commented how much I enjoyed his films, especially "Snatch." One of us got the bright (yet drunk) idea for him to act like his characters do in the movies. Loud, vulgar, angry. So he starts yelling things like "bollocks" and other British swears I can't remember. The weird thing was once he started, he went there 100%. Yelling at people, hitting things, and getting in faces. He ruined the party, and I felt kinda responsible, cause he kept looking back at me and saying "that was good, eh?" Or "oi, watch this." So someone called the police, I think. All I remember was that someone had the foresight to take the shelves out of the fridge so people didn't have to crawl to leave the party. I think I walked home.
By Jeff @ 10:39 AM
Last time, I only bought one 11.2 oz bottle of the SkullSplitter Orkney Ale (at $2.29). Not because I figured one would be enough, but because Beverages & More was sold out. I had the last one. When I set up my notepad document for notes on this, the first thing I wrote was "So good, I don't want to take the time to write about it." Part of me still feels the same way. I've tried to buy it once or twice since then, and I've just ended up drinking it and feeling happy. I was in Bevmo last week, and the shelf was full of SkullSplitter. Fed up with myself, I bought two bottles this time around, committed to reviewing this delicious nectar of the viking-gods. When I was ready to sit and review this beer on December 6th, I said there'd be no excuses. Well, I was still sick then, and though I was drinking at the same time, I didn't have a sense of smell. And what good is a review if a primary sense is unavailable. 11 days later, I'm feeling 85% better, and I have no excuses.
I'm forcing myself to write about this beer tonight. It's the season of giving, and it's time to give something nice to all my adoring fans. Besides, I can't let Ryan out-review me. It seems somewhat inappropriate to break the Xmas-red foil seal of SkullSplitter Ale on this, the third night of Hanukkah (this spelling, I've noticed, is starting to become the norm), but yet I press onward with my review.
The distributor's website says the brewing of ale was a great Viking tradition, which the Scots adopted when the Vikings settled there, centuries ago. If this was the type of ale the Vikings were famous for, I was born in the wrong era.
This is a rich, yet easy to drink ale. A deep, clear red in the glass, and not much white foam on top. For a high test beer, it is smooth. I was expecting the usual bitterness, hops, malts, but this one comes from left field. There's nothing "usual" about it. There's a bit of caramel in there, but not nearly as much as the Reaper Ale I recently reviewed. It's more of a tannic feel on the palate. Not unlike a cabernet sauvignon. It's more akin to the mouthfeel of such a wine, as opposed to the actual taste. The aftertaste as a warm quality to it, like toasted oats. Odd to say, but it's a comfort feeling that goes beyond a mere "breakfast food." As far as smell goes, it's not sweet, but it's sweet smelling for an ale. It's a difference in smell that a Newcastle or Sierra wouldn't/couldn't offer. The fact that this definitely isn't your normal ale is what makes it nice. You can't go to your corner store to pick up something nearly as good as this, you have to make a special trip to a specialty store. It's not just about the beer, it's about the journey it takes you on, and SkullSplitter has taken me on quite a journey.
1.0 is perfect in each category,
0.1 is the complete opposite of perfect.
Use your imagination for everything between.
The perfect beer would be scored "4.0/4"
SkullSplitter Orkney Ale
By the way, I need to give credit where it's due. BrainofJ from the BKV forum is the one who turned me onto this ale, in a comment from my Bombardier Ale review. Thanks, J.
By Jeff @ 1:21 AM
We assembled by 630a, and began our search at 7a. There must've been 60-70 people, total. We scoured as best we could the area of Whiting Ranch. I paired up with Mike, drummer from our band, and we went in and out of brush, through dried out creek beds, and huge patches of poison ivy. No one at any location was able to find any sign of David Boone, which is both a good and bad sign. The biggest worry in our area was mountain lions. The areas they tend to frequent at night were searched this morning, and no clues were found.
Adam was interviewed by local channels CBS 2, ABC 7, KCAL 9, and possibly NBC 4 (I can't remember). There may be more local news crews that I don't know of. Please make sure you try to watch these local broadcasts, support the Boone's, and spread the word about David's disappearance. The LA Times was there, and they interviewed Mike & I.
I will continue to post updates and links to articles as they come in.
Thank you to all who helped today, and to all that have shown support for Adam's family.
I hope all of you took the time to read my post about Adam's father, David Boone, and that he's missing. It's now a week after he's disappeared, and Adam is planning a search party for Friday, Dec. 15 at 630a. I am part of that search party. I'm putting the word out in hopes that some of my friends and local readers will give of their sleep/free time that morning and join me in the search party that day. I've taken the day off work, and I intend to be doing all I can, all day. I don't know how long it will take, but I'm pretty certain once dusk hits, that'll be the end. If you can't help, I understand. But if you're healthy and aren't doing anything at all, please find it in your hearts to join the search.
630. Fri. morning.
Walmart parking lot.
26502 town centre drive.
Foothill ranch. 92610.
We will be walking thru bushes and fields.
Anyone else you can bring will be helpful.
By Jeff @ 4:18 PM
Taken from my recent chat with Eric. Instead of retelling the story, I just copy/pasted the chat transcript, with some minor post edits. Enjoy.
Jeff: yo dude, guess who just got pulled over
J: we all left rehearsal at the same time
J: and I was caught between Steve and Dave fucking around on the road
J: so when I had an opening (on city streets), I merged and sped past Steve
J: and a cop sitting right there
E: oh man, that sucks
J: no ticket tho
J: it pays to have a clean record
J: and to be straightforward
E: for sure
J: 1st cop asked "you on probation?"
J: checked my shit, and his partner told me to get out of the car
J: they asked why I wasn't home, and I told 'em the truth***
J: then they asked the name of my band, so I told
J: and our type of music
J: then he asked me to name a song for 'em, so I did
J: and then I invited 'em out to our xmas show on the 23rd
E: hah! nice
E: did you look like a thug or something?
J: i think they just wanted to use scare tactics on me
J: I mean, I knew I wasn't gonna get a ticket
J: well, I didn't think I would
E: did they search you/the car?
J: they told me they were doing me a favor, and I said thank you, shook their hands and they let me go
E: way cool
E: i got searched, my car searched mid day for expired tags in the sentra
J: that sucked
J: guy told me I shouldn't even try to speed in the scion
J: "you can't even go 55 downhill in that thing, what're you trying to speed for?"
E: well then it shouldn't really matter then
J: I said it was a mistake and that I was just looking to get home
J: guy kinda looked like me, too
J: like a clean cut me
J: thick plastic rims and everything
J: well, not JUST like me
J: but you know
J: some similarities
J: god I love a clean record
E: plus i think the type/look of the car can affect it too
J: that's true
J: and I don't look dangerous or anything
E: and you car isn't all riced out
J: I mean, as much as I say I knew I wasn't gonna be in trouble, I'm still lucky
J: of course, if they had seen the shit steve was pulling 10 seconds before, he'd've been in huge trouble
E: yeah, potentially could've been street racing
J: well, he was swerving and cutting me off
J: and I was just trying to get away
J: the cop says "why you driving like that?"
J: I say cause my buddy was messing around, and I was trying to get away
E: if they just saw quick lane change and you take off in front
J: "you just gonna rat out your friend like that?"
J: "fuck yeah, he'd do the same to me. We're friends, that's what friends do"
J: as I think "would I really do that to Chris or Eric?"
E: it's not like your ratting him out for trafficking weed or something actually illegal
***The "Truth" is that I had just come from rehearsal, 3 blocks away.
By Jeff @ 1:02 AM
Usually, I go to sleep at or around 3a. Last night, I went to bed at 1a. And I was bright-eyed and bushy-tailed at 6a (or so). I'm not sure how that happened, but I should probably make a habit of it. I even made breakfast, which I haven't eaten in weeks. Usually I grab a pastry and a cup of coffee at work. Eggs at home is cheaper (and better).
I've got a lot of things to do today, including (but not limited to) calling some graduate school advisors, calling at least one soon-to-open fine dining restaurant, buying and sending a (nearly) $100 money order to Canada for Page 17 of Runaways #9, Vol. 1. I had to do it.
But the best part about being up this early is discovering that Firefly is on the Sci-Fi Channel. I could always watch my DVDs of the series... if only I had them. I'd like 'em back, by the way. You know who you are.
By Jeff @ 7:56 AM
I received an email tonight from my friend Adam, explaining that his father, David Boone, has been missing last Tuesday afternoon. His whereabouts are unknown.
From the email:
we assumed he went to the hiking trails near his house to walk and clear his head. so far. we've scouted the area 4 different times, with helicopters twice, i accompanied a bloodhound yesterday. i spoke with 5 different news channels and the o.c register and l.a times wrote about it. we've sent fliers around to every bus and train station, hospital, homeless shelter, psychiatric ward, library and campground. we've spoken to every family member, friend, business associate, lawyer. he doesn't gamble, drink, smoke, do drugs, or have health or medical problems. we've check e-mails and phone records. nothing out of the ordinary. we have absolutely no leads.
The story is all over the local news here in Southern California.
From the LA Times:
As more time goes on, the situation gets grimmer," said Jim Amormino, a spokesman for the Orange County Sheriff's Department. "I hope I'm wrong, [but] it adds up to disaster."
David Boone, a father of four, was last seen by son Davis, 17, about 2 p.m. Tuesday, when, authorities believe, he may have taken a stroll in the hillsides near their Foothill Ranch home near Lake Forest. Terrie Boone, David Boone's wife, from whom he has been separated for more than two years, said she stopped by his house about 6:30 p.m. after she was unable to reach him by phone. The house was dark, she said, and the family grew increasingly concerned.
"By Tuesday night," she said, "the alarm went up. By that time it was dark; we were all here in the apartment waiting for him to call. And he did not."
The family called police early Wednesday to file a missing-persons report.
Boone left no note. His car, mountain bike and wallet were all in the house, leading the family to speculate that he may have gone hiking in Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park, a favorite spot. In the pre-dawn hours Wednesday, Boone's four sons, ages 17 to 27, got on their mountain bikes and combed the trails searching for him, Terrie Boone said.
He is white, 6 foot 3, 230 pounds with gray hair and blue eyes. Anyone with information is asked to call the Sheriff's Department at (714) 647-7055 during regular business hours or at (714) 628-7170 after hours.
Please keep Adam's family in your hearts and minds during this ordeal. If anyone has even a shred of info, please contact the OC Sheriff's Dept. As his friend, I have no idea what to do to help, besides get the word out to as many people as possible, and pray that his father is safe.
Thank you for taking the time to read through this.
By Jeff @ 1:41 AM
Name: Green Arrow
Alter Ego: Oliver Queen
Abilities: Supreme archery skills, acrobatics and martial arts skills.
Lone Wolf. Extroverted. Practical. Focused.
One of the more progressive heroes, Green Arrow is, as his facade would suggest, somewhat of a modern Robin Hood. Much like his darker counterpart, Batman, he started as a highly skilled yet fundamentally human hero whose intellect, skills and virtually limitless resources have allowed him to join the ranks of the great superheroes. However, unlike Batman, Green Arrow lost his millions, which has since motivated him to become the hero and protector of underprivelaged, so called "lower" class.
My test tracked 4 variables How you compared to other people your age and gender:
|Link: The New DC Comic Book Superhero Test written by Phil_Ken_Seben on OkCupid Free Online Dating, home of the The Dating Persona Test|
By Jeff @ 11:07 PM
This week, I relapsed. I had a cold or flu the last couple of weeks, and I caught a second cold somehow on Sunday or Monday. Yesterday, I was gross. Today, not as gross. I should be good to go back to the grind tomorrow. Today, I hung out and ate some pho. I finished Cats Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut today. It's a good book. It was my orchestra book until last Thursday, and I couldn't wait until rehearsals start again in January to finish it. Read it if you can. Sorry for the boring recommend, but this isn't English class. If I enjoy it, assume it's worth a look.
I fired up the ol' GameCube today, too. Played a little Zelda II and Zelda: Ocarina of Time. And by a little, I mean very little. Zelda II was more fun than I remember it being back in the day, tho. Got past the first palace pretty quickly. Might play some more tonight. Not much else happened today, but here's a few links I stumbled upon today. Enjoy.
Fishing for Fugu
Ever seen that episode of the Simpsons titled One Fish, Two Fish, Blowfish, Blue Fish? The one where Homer is suspected to have eaten improperly prepared Fugu, the very poisonous blowfish native to Japanese waters? Well, fisherman Adam Guy and fishingfury.com documented his experience fishing for, and eating, Fugu in Ōhara, Japan. A throughly entertaining read, if you're interested in such things. Found this one on modblog.bmezine.com
He-Man Universe Redesign.
Not for child-aged humans, either.
Remember He-Man from when you were a kid? Those cartoons kicked so much ass back then. Have you had a chance to watch them recently? Are you floored by just how gay they are now? Well two years ago, comic artist Marko Djurdjevic revamped the series for his own personal enjoyment. I don't know if anything has ever come of this, or if he was just getting creative for creativity's sake, but it's a major twist on an old favorite that works incredibly well. To surmise, the characters aren't just lame toy designs. They're all part of a dark, violent war that's broken out in Eternia.
"Skeletor has devastated Eternia, killed off the royal family and demasked He-Man in public. Prince Adam is no more. The heroes are forced to flee to Grayskull and hide in there. The whole world is under siege by Skeletors armies..."
Take a look, read up, and imagine the modern, savage continuation of all those great characters you owned as 5" action figures back in the day. Just be warned, Skeletor looks pretty gay, and Evil-Lyn's origin isn't for the feint of heart. Found this one at BKV.TV
How-To: Build Your Own Custom Full-Sized Wireless Guitar Hero Controller
Fans of Guitar Hero, rejoice! Here's your chance to take your favorite electric guitar and make a custom, full-sized Guitar Hero wireless controller. Apparently there's a lot of butchery involved, so if you're not into completely destroying that gitfiddle of yours, just read to enjoy. Looks pretty awesome.
At the time of this post, however, I can't get past Page 1 because the tubes are clogged from all the internets being sent. Maybe I'll get through on Tuesday. Above, I've linked to the Digg mirror site, so you can at least read the first page. Thanks to Barbie for sending this my way
By Jeff @ 6:52 PM
Well, I slept 8 (or 10) hours last night. I feel good. A little stuffed up, but not so shitty as yesterday. I'm just gonna chill out today, do some cleaning, maybe a little video games, and finish up the comics I didn't get around to reading. Happy Thursday.
By Jeff @ 9:45 AM
Why is the Jennifer Aniston/Vince Vaughan break-up CNN-worthy?
There's a Double Feature coming out next year from Quentin Tarantino & Robert Rodriguez called "Grindhouse." If you're a fan of over-the-top gore and violence, then this one's for you. Here's the trailer. Starring Danny Trejo as "Machete," in case you didn't catch it.
Today, I'm picking up comics. One of those being the amazing limited series Doctor Strange: The Oath #3. Given an "A-" rating by Entertainment Weekly. If you're a nerd buy this title. If you say "but I'm not a nerd, you jackass!" quit fooling yourself and buy this title, nerd.
I'm buying beer today, too. I will have a review of a new beer FINISHED tonight, barring any unforeseen circumstances.
I need to get a tacky Christmas sweater for the Smiling Tyrants show on Dec 23 (details on the right), since it is our Xmas show. Come on out in your finest Xmas garb. Prizes to be given. If anyone's dad has a great xmas sweater from 1982 that he doesn't wear anymore, send it my way. I'll find a good home for it.
CNN just told me that Oprah and rapper 50¢ are having a little tiff. Fuck those two motherfuckers. I hate hearing about rich celebrities.
And if you're in desperate need of cats in sinks, click this link. CatsInSinks.com
By Jeff @ 7:07 AM
What the hell happened? The last two nights, I've laid down and just took a nap. Tonight, I fell asleep before 10, then woke up sometime during an episode of Married With Children. Watched that for 5 minutes, and fell back asleep. At 145, I woke up to find the cat sleeping on my leg, with her head on my belly. Now it's 210, and The Tick is on. I'm good for about 20 more minutes, then it's "do I try to go to back to sleep, or watch a movie?" And if I DO watch a movie, which one's it gonna be? I guess life could be worse...
By Jeff @ 2:04 AM
For Barbie! We had a great time all weekend (that I was around). We had some dinner and wine with Antonio, then back home for some Wii bowling ;) Saturday, we had the morning together, then I went home for two concerts with a community orchestra. Back Saturday night for some late night Thai food. Today, we hung out, had some Wahoo's and saw Casino Royale, which was awesome. Now, I pack up to head home, cause there's work tomorrow. I promise I'll update more.
Ooh, I did buy a fedora tonight! Pics to come.
By Jeff @ 10:24 PM
Here's some pics from the last 2 months or so. It includes our Tyrants gig at Martini Blues, My house sitting in HB, on line for the Wii, and various other things.
Me, playing. I love this one. A little dark, tho.
The dog I dealt with when I house sat.
Guess what I'm about to eat.
Eric's newest pet
Barb, outside the Sugar Shack
A nice one at the Spectrum, before "Borat"
My Wii Ticket!!!
A Sharpei sculpture from my Uncle's on Thanksgiving:
By Jeff @ 12:07 AM
It looks like I've being punished for putting myself through the cold of camping outside Target Saturday night. I wish I had the foresight to bring an air mattress and an honest-to-goodness sleeping bag. Sunday, my throat was sore, and talking was a dumb idea. Since Monday, I've had the cold from Hell. Nose running, chest congested, achy, stuffy, cough-y, but the throat's been fine. Today, Wednesday, three days past Sunday, I'm still sick, though I'm less miserable than I have been. I've cancelled all my lessons, and I've been debating whether or not to go to Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow (which would be incredibly depressing). I've been convalescing with the aid of spicy, spicy pho, copious amounts of cran-grape juice, and lots and lots of Wii. I bought Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess for the Wii, since my online order for it hasn't come in the mail yet. It's immense fun. If you own or are planning to own a Wii, buy this game. There's something mildly therapeutic about slashing enemies by physically slashing with your controller. I've already finished two boss battles (which are amazing), and I can't wait to see what else this game has to offer.
Also, I beat my brother's ass today on Wii Golf.
By Jeff @ 8:38 PM
Last night Eric, Ryan, and I camped out in front of Target for a Nintendo Wii. It was fun. Time went by fast, but it was colder than balls, and we didn't plan on that... But Target had 81 systems, and I was #55. Hahahahaha! I'm playing it now. It's fun. Pics from last night to come.
By Jeff @ 2:12 PM
That's how work was last night. Kathy Griffin was at the performing arts center, and we got bombed by all these Griffin-style fag hags wanting to come in and get some eats. It was a mess. Kitchen was fucking up, bar was taking 15 minutes to make drink orders, and one of my tables just kept adding people. Was fucked. The end of the night was good, tho I didn't get out of there til 1130 (we close at 10).
There's this bar in Costa Mesa called "The Huddle" that I went to have a couple of beers at with some coworkers. We played this stupid ass game of pool called "cutthroat." Instead of Stripes vs. Solids, each guy lays claim to a set of 5 balls, 1-5/6-10/11-15, and you're trying to knock in everyone elses before yours get knocked in. Lame.
After our first game, this old cowboy (literally) came over to challenge someone to 8-Ball. No one stepped up, so I did. I ran the table out right away. Chris and Eric, you would be proud. 2 stripes on the break, then 3 more in while the cowboy still had 7 on the table. It ended up being a close game, but I made some amazing shots. I had my coworkers (and the cowboy) surprised at the shots I was making. I won. I saved the table. It was a good game.
By Jeff @ 11:36 AM
I've come across a few... interesting sites lately, and I've been wanting to share 'em all. Some are NSFW (not safe for work), so I'll make sure I point those out. Here we go:
Ever wondered what child-actor Kirk Cameron is up to now?
For the urban vandal who has everthing (I want one, btw):
My next TV:
From here on out, everything's NSFW.
From here on out, everything's NSFW.
From here on out, everything's NSFW.
From here on out, everything's NSFW.
Now that you've been adequately warned...
I met this chick at Comic-Con... rather I paid $5 to have my picture taken with her.
Tiffany Taylor, Miss November 1998
Has someone made a sex reference that's gone way over your head? Ever been in an Alligator Fuck House? I haven't.
Encyclopedia of Sex
And for those interested in the beautiful, the grotesque, the different, there's a great blog that features only pictures of people with body modifications. I check it at least every other day. There's a lot of skin suspension, tattoos, and piercings. Though you will run across a LOT of nudity, and the occasional intentionally, heavily "modified" genitalia. Not for the weak hearted.
By Jeff @ 10:48 PM
I'm glad you asked that question. Is gud. I woke up and watched a little TPIR. Got to enjoy a little Bob Barker before my daily dose of DS9. I didn't pay much attention, tho. And that hack they got to replace Announcer Rod Roddy when he died, infuriates me. It's like he's doing a bad impression of the dead guy, spinning in his grave.
After TPIR, I was thinking about the future, and I checked out the CSU Fullerton Music Ed. site to look at their requirements for a degree (Masters or Bachelors) in Music Education. It's looking like they don't take (or prefer) Music Ed. grad students who don't have actual teaching experience, and I dunno if lessons and subbing counts. So I might join the ranks of Ryan and become Captain Second-Bachelors-Degree! On the upside, I think the CA teachers payscale pays more, not only for how many degrees you've earned, but for how many units/credits you have over your required minimum. I think I'm somewhere in the neighborhood of 60+ units over the 180 necessary to have graduated from UCI. Anyway, I emailed their Music Ed. department, and am waiting for return correspondence.
Then it was time to get my ass dressed and beg for a job. A new hire at Z's (Aaron) has a night job at Ruth's Chris Steak House, where he says he makes $300+ a night, as a trainer/lead server. When I first trained him, I joke: "Are you hiring?" He says maybe, then asks if I'm interested. "We'll see," I sez. Well, it's been 4 weeks since I've trained Aaron, and I've really been let down at work. Not by him, but by the situation. I was burnt out when I left 2 years (or so) ago, and now the standards aren't as high as I remember. Plus, the $500 a week I figured I'd be making is ending up to be $300-$350. Thankfully I have paychecks too, and at least $120 a week from lessons. But. The guy convinced me to go in for an interview today, and I spoke briefly with a manager. It was a little intense, but the guy was cool. He said they might call me back for a second interview, since I was referred (and recommended) by Aaron, who apprently is held in high esteem by his coworkers over there.
Of course I bought comics today, it being Wednesday and all. There were some gems this week, but my list is as follows:
- New Avengers #25: This book is fucking BORING now. It centers on Iron Man and how he's such a douche with this Superhero Registration Act. I don't even care about what else happened. I really need to stop buying this title. I used to have such faith in Brian Michael Bendis, too...
- Civil War #5: Remember when Spider-Man was in the news cause he unmasked himself in the comics? Of course you don't. Well, this is the story that it was part of. And it's taking forever to come out. It's altogether good. Not great.
- Green Lantern Corps #6: This one's pretty good. If it's Green Lantern, you know I'll buy it. It's got some good characters in it, tho. Character dev's been pretty good so far. Except for Guy Gardener. I hate that guy.
- The Escapists #5: The only non-Superhero book on my list, and probably the most accessible to any of you non-comic readers. It's about a guy and his friends who make a comic about a character called "The Escapist" from Michael Chabon's novel, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay.
- Astonishing X-Men #18: Written by Buffy The Vampire Slayer scribe, Joss Whedon, this has got to be one of the most fucked up/convoluted X-Men storylines, since Morrison. I love it.
- Ultimate Fantastic Four #36: Marvel's most underrated team book. I've loved this since Issue #1. It's been top notch through the handful of different creative teams it's had, and it's just better and better. As good as he is, it's nice that someone I've never heard of is writing better than that last guy that was i the title (who was pretty good).
Two bone lessons tonight. They were good.
Back at home, I grab some eats and a little TV. I start writing this blog at 1030, and at 11, Good Eats comes on. It's the (new?) Fried Turkey episode. Alton Brown is a genius. And I get sidetracked from this for 30 minutes, minus commercial breaks.
Then I get an IM from Eric. We're buying Wii's this weekend. I had to preorder games and have 'em shipped. Another 15 minutes wayleid, but I ordered Zelda and Tony Hawk.
I was gonna read Crime and Punishment. I guess Dostoevsky isn't gonna get his fair share tonight. It's late. Commence the jigglin'.
And before I go, some of you have been bitching about my lack of fresh beer reviews. By Saturday, I'll have new material. I promise!
By Jeff @ 1:00 AM
I've done a bit this last week or so. I should've blogged. I didn't. I'm sorry to hurt you, babies.
Starting with last Sunday, I saw Borat. High Five! This movie was fucking hilarious, and like the rest of America, I can't stop quoting Borat-isms. Now, it's not the best movie out there, but it certainly is one of the funniest. There's so much subversive shit in that movie. If you're looking to laugh uncontrollably for 90 minutes, then two days later get hit with all the unbelievable shit that's said by unsuspecting people, give Borat a chance.
I had rehearsal last Thursday night, with the Yorba Linda Community Orchestra. I've been sitting in on the second trombone part, at the behest of my adult student, who plays third. It's turning into somewhat of a second lesson, more in rehearsal etiquette, which I don't mind. I feel like a nag sometimes, pointing out that he's coming in late, playing a rhythm wrong, or writing in a wrong position, but he seems to appreciate it if he's having trouble. What's bothering me about the rehearsals is the old guy that plays first trombone. He's terrible. Without getting into too much musical detail, he's a sloppy player, and won't tighten his playing up for orchestra. And as secion leader, one would think he's got some musical knowledge. We're playing Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker Suite (1891), and this guy starts bitching about "damn foreigners" when he can't understand what the music is asking him to do (since musical notation is in Italian (mostly)). So I tell him what it means, and he continues to bitch. Then the bassoonist asks a question about what to play, since she's the only bassoon player. Old Guy says "Well, I've got a bassoon part right here, should I play it?" holding up the Trombone Basso (Bass Trombone) part. I tell him he doesn't, and he looks at me stone faced and says "yes I do, it says Basso. I said "it says 'Trombone Basso;' It means 'Bass Trombone' in Italian." And this guy barely got it. I'm over him, but the group is still fun. We'll see if I stay in it past the Dec 2 concert.
Blackpoint Comics seems to be a hit. I've been getting contacted by people wanting to contribute. If you're interested and you're reading this, know that we're not pairing up writers and artists. It's up to creative teams to come together and work together. We're gonna get a forum going for creators to meet and greet. Stay patient. Stay Tuned.
Friday night, I went to Kevin's, and hung with Ryan. Later Friday night, I went to Barbie's and stayed the night.
Saturday night, I went out to a Cancer Dance-A-Thon that my friend Neil was dancing in. It was cool. I sat on my ass, but Neil was a dancing fool. I met a few people, and talked about comics the whole night, without initiating the topic.
Today, Monday, I'm planning on spending a fair part of the day at Commerce Casino. Either that, or it's PS2 all day.
By Jeff @ 10:47 AM
Kevin and I have been kicking this idea around for a little while now, about starting a comic book 'magazine' which gives unpublished & amateur comic creators a chance to get published, and allows established comic creators to tell the stories they've been unable to tell. Well, we got our shit together, and we're pleased to annouce the arrival of Blackpoint Comics™!!! Kevin publishes, through R)V Press, a poetry magazine solely made from submissions by poetry writers, called Re)Verb, and he asked me if there's anything like this for comics, and as far as I know, there isn't. Aside from self-publishing. So for the last couple of months, we've been banging out the concept for a comic filled with the material of comic creators, novice and pro.
On Brian K. Vaughan's forum, Vaughan's stated that, for legal reasons, he can't read anyone's unpublished work. I'd imagine all comic creators will say the same thing. So what's an unpublished creator to do if they have great work, but no one to show it to because they're unpublished? That's where we come in. We like it, we publish it, share it with the world, and you can take your published work to anyone who'll read it. Everyone's happy. I know there's creators out there (like a certain Emperor who visits here every so often) who come up with short, stand alone works, that are hell to publish, because they're not full comic book length (1-12 pages, for example). Blackpoint Comics is designed for stories like that.
I can't wait to get enough content to put this out. I'm the editor, too, so I get to read all this great work that'll be coming in.
If anyone has any thoughts about this, hit me with 'em. Leave a comment, or email me at BlackpointComics AT gmail DOT com
If you read this and want to submit, check out our submission guidelines
Also, I started a Blackpoint Comics MySpace
By Jeff @ 1:22 AM
I was pissed when I went into this election. I brought a lot of bias to the ballot box today. I won't say why I voted against certain people, but it might take a lot of people by surprise. I wrote in on a few votes with "None Of The Above," including for the office of Governor. Schwarzenegger sucks. Angelides sucks. And fuck the Green and Peace & Freedom parties. I wrote myself in for 42nd District Representative. And I stayed away from most candidates with "Republican" or "Democrat." And I voted against banning gambling in Orange County. We'll see how it all unfolds tomorrow.
By Jeff @ 8:25 PM
After 4 weeks and a day of waiting for my goddamn computer, it's finished and in my possession. Expect some new pics and way more posts than I've posted in the last month.
Before I get off this thing for now, I'd like to not recommend taking your computer to L.A. Computer Company, in Anaheim. They have the worst, slowest, most passive techs when it comes to getting your shit taken care of. 4 weeks for a logic board, and a bottom casing which the tech broke himself (but paid for). $1200+ in parts, btw, which cost me nothing. This is why we buy Apple Care.
By Jeff @ 11:29 PM
As some of you know, I'm house sitting for my parents' friends in Huntington Beach. Well this Friday is the night it all goes down. Come on out, and we'll do some drinking here, then out to a little local food, and then some more drinkin'. Be there or be square. And call me if you're down.
By Jeff @ 9:46 AM
It's Saturday morning. Why am I so tired?
For those that missed it, I'm a trainer again at Z'Tejas. The only problem is they kinda sprung it on me and I have yet to get into the rhythm of training people, so my shifts this week have been kinda weird. I'm training him today at 1230. We're gonna taste margaritas, and I'm gonna try not to get tanked before my 4pm shift.
Jeremy's having a party tonight. A Halloween Party! Well, a pirate party. Before my shift I need to go and find some pirate-ish accessories. There, I'm probably safe to get tanked, if I were so inclined. At least I won't have a shift afterwards to worry about.
Tomorrow, I get the run down for house sitting (before work). My parents' friends are heading out of town, and I'm watching their place in Huntington Beach. Their place is a 3-story house, about a block from the pacific ocean... Watch for balloons tied to the mailbox [An ice cold one to anyone that can tell me what that's the international symbol for].
Tuesday should yield my laptop, only 4 weeks after I left it. That's also when I start house sitting.
Remember when I used to blog about past events? I'm not quite sure why I've foretold the future today.
And before I forget, I've been playing Marvel: Ultimate Alliance (PS2). I think I've geeked out, on average, more times per day in the last few days, than I have in a while. Lets just say Blade + Ghost Rider + Doc Strange has been a dream of mine since childhood. Maybe I can get Jean Grey in there, too (*crap, she's unplayble...). It's one of those "if she says Mrs. Dash, I'm gonna lose it" moments.
By Jeff @ 10:20 AM
I'm on a double today, but there's about 4 hours between shifts, and I need to be back at 6. I've come home to kill some time, but I thought I had more shit I wanted to do. Guess not. Now, I'm getting tired. Lethargic. I'm now not so hot on heading back in to the Z. I could practice. I should practice. But I'm probably not gonna. I've got a couple errands to run. I might pick up some milk tea, too. Who the fuck knows. I thought about buying a video game and playing that for a little while, but one comes out tomorrow that I was gonna pick up (Marvel Ultimate Alliance). Might as well wait til tomorrow. Bleh.
By Jeff @ 4:02 PM
I'm getting a "promotion" at work to a trainer/lead server. Again. I used to be a lead when I worked there a few years ago, and it was cool back then. The pay's not better, only a few perks to the job, one of which being that I get to choose a set schedule. That'll be nice, except they're promoting me under the pretense that I'll be the daytime trainer when they need one. And I was intending to start on all nights... At least I'll be able to take Sundays off now. I might just stay on day shifts, and head to another place for dinners, but if I can get a good schedule and get in the rhythm of the shifts I'm on, I should be in good shape. At least I get free food now.
By Jeff @ 3:30 PM
They've found a logic board, and it'll be in the shop on or before Friday, 10/27. I'm thinking about calling back and seeing what they can do for me since I'll be waiting nearly 4 weeks for my computer, but I'm not sure what to say. Unless the goddamn repair shop decided to take their time fixing my shit.
By Jeff @ 3:26 PM
Because of Dave's post, I dug up my old Blogger accounts, switched them to Beta, and I'm trying to figure out how to merge them into the archives of this account. Until then, enjoy these links:
By Jeff @ 1:52 AM
I called tonight around 5 to figure out what's happening with my computer. I spent 20 minutes farting around with the touchtone menu until I could talk to somebody, I spoke to a drunk, clueless operator, got hung up on during transfer 3 times, and went to India, where I was put on hold twice, then disconnected when business hours ended. I'm pretty fucking pissed right now.
By Jeff @ 6:21 PM
Just spent the last 3 hours w/ Jonny at Commerce Casino. I blew $80 in about an hour (maybe less) and managed to hold onto my next $40 until I left. A lot of beligerent motherfuckers at the $3/$6 table tonight. Got to talking. They'd probably laugh their asses off if they knew I was blogging right now... (one of the older dudes brought it up)
By Jeff @ 1:35 AM
For those keeping score, my "week-to-ten-days" of being without my powerbook is now at 14 days. I've called the repair shop twice, (last thursday and today) and both times, they've pretty much said the part I need replaced is on indefinite back order. It's the Logic Board, btw. The shop is out them. Apple is out of them. Which means the part isn't being manufactured. The actual term the shop AND Apple used was "ETA unknown." Also, I took my computer in on the 4th, and the part wasn't ordered until the 12th. Way to go LA Computer Company.
Seeing as how yelling at the repair guy would've been pointless, since it's not his fault the part isn't being manufactured, I called Apple to talk to someone in customer support. After being on hold for 40 minutes, I explained my situation to the operator, and she did a little research (here's where the sun starts shining). She said they'd immediately put me on an "expedited part search," where Apple's "experts" will comb their resources and find my part. The search takes 48 hours, and has a 90% success rate. If the search is fruitless, they contact the manufacturer for an ETA on the part. In case the ETA for the finished repair goes past October, Apple said they don't want me to be without a computer that long, and we'll talk about replacement. She said I'll get a call back from her this Friday about the results of the part search and what to do next.
It's incredibly disappointing that the repair shop has been so passive in getting this taken care of. Even a phone call to me saying "Mr. Long, we're sorry, but your the ETA logic board of your logic board is unknown. Would you like your PowerBook back until the part has arrived?" I'm sure my shit has gathered a thin layer of dust from sitting on a shelf, waiting for some TLC. I'll hold judgment on the above-linked shop until this debacle is over, but it would be nice if they took a more active role in making me happy.
By Jeff @ 1:34 PM
Thanks to everyone who came out these last two nights to our gigs.
I just woke up from getting in at 4am last night from our gig at the Gypsy Lounge (which ended at 11), followed by going to an Irish Bar, followed by Denny's. I'm tired as hell. Friday night was the same way (except we were done at 1a). It's been a crazy weekend, and now I have to get ready for work. No gigs lined up yet, but I'll post as soon as we have some.
By Jeff @ 1:00 PM
Last night, I got home late. Cracked open Icelander by Dustin Long (no relation... I think). Just bought it. I love it so far, and I'll talk more about it when I've finished it. I had a little scotch to go with my reading. I figured a little scotch & water would set me right up for comfort. I read and drank, finished my glass and said "Hey! I'm good for another!" So I poured a little from the from what was left of the Abelour Barb got me a couple years ago for my bday. 120 proof fire-in-a-bottle. Therein sat my mistake. I thought I had a fair buzz going. Apparently, I had a little more than that going on. I woke up hungover. A more accurate description would be the Spanish word for hungover, cudo. Cudo also means "raw," and boy was I raw this morning. The worst part of the morning (after I choked my toast down) was that I had to go to work. The last thing you wanna do hungover is fucking talk to people. Too bad I'm a waiter. But a special thanks goes out to, Christopher Columbus for enslaving the indigeneous people of this country and getting a holiday for it. Work was slow, which made the day bearable. Coworkers kept asking me "What's wrong?" and wondering if I was high, cause I was quiet, squinty-eyed, and slow-moving. More so than usual. But the shift was short, and my post-shift steak sandwich was greasy, which put me in the right place.
No word on my laptop yet. Hopefully I'll be back to my usual net-haunting this week.
And to my local friends: Call me. I'm bored.
By Jeff @ 11:11 PM
I took my Powerbook in to the tech, and he's gotta hold onto it for a week to 10 days. My RAM troubles are covered by Apple, with or without warranty (the latch isn't covered by Apple, so it's not getting fixed). The 3 year extended warranty just makes the process a little quicker. I offended the tech by insinuating that he was going to steal my data, to which he said if he really wanted it, there's nothing I could do about it. Not that I thought he would, but it gives me a great deal of separation anxiety to be without my computer for a while. So tech guy, if you fire up my computer, then Firefox, and are now reading this post, my apologies for my attitude earlier today. I was feeling e-vulnerable.
For my readers, I won't be spending every waking moment at teh comp, like I normally do, so if your comment doesn't get enabled for a few days, hang tight. Be back in a week (unless something important happens, then I'll go on my parents' comp).
By Jeff @ 4:09 PM
I've been feeling antsy lately. I woke up last Wednesday with nothing to do, and a voice in my head screamed "GET A TATTOO!" If there was a shop I had complete confidence in, I would have that day. What might have I committed to skin? I've got a few things in mind. Some Hebrew things, some music things, some comic booky things, some animal things, some friend/family things. I dunno. I know I've posted about tattoos before, and I'm still chicken shit about the whole thing. I think it's a by-product of living with your parents. I'm in the mood for change. A metamorphosis. And I've been figuring a tattoo would keep the pot stirred for a while.
I got new glasses in the wake of my cancelled LASIK, and they're better than I could've hoped. People's reaction to them has been stellar. "Sexy new glasses" was a term a female coworker even used. They're Nike glasses, and if there's only one thing I know, it's that 9-year old Chinese slave laborers know how to make cool glasses. But they've made my self-opinion do a 180 from where I thought I'd be after my surgery. Like, I thought I'd be this adonis, this He-Man if you will, without glasses or contacts, and now I feel totally geeked out. But in a good way. Like my self-esteem has risen up a little.
I've finally done something I should've done 6 years ago, and sat down and typed out my dough issues in spreadsheet form. It seems I might make a little more than I thought, though my exorbitant debt looms over everything.
I've got to take my Mac in tomorrow to get a couple things worked out. If it takes a long time, I might be out of commission for a few days. RAM and latch, if you're wondering.
By Jeff @ 11:06 PM
I've got a pair of current events to share today.
The first involves US Congressman Mark Foley. This West Palm Beach representative was co-chairman of the congressional caucus on missing and exploited children. He personally wrote some of the laws in place today for prosecuting pedophiles. Turns out the laws he wrote my well be used to prosecute his own pederasty. He was recently exposed by one of his "pages" (high school aged intern) for what can be described as "inappropriate IMing." There's pages and pages of IM transcripts available online where Mr. Foley asks this 16 year old intern questions regarding masturbation, his cock size, hand jobs, and admitting to the kid that he's fantasizing about him, while sporting wood. This is a 6-term Congressman elected to protect the youth of America.
Story @ BBC.co.uk
Story @ BBC.co.uk
The second is a Prohibition on Online Gambling that was snuck onto the tail end of a Port Security Bill. This passed, people. The gist of the Prohibition is that it bans us from using credit cards to gamble online, it bans credit card companies from making payments to gambling sites, and it bans your bank from either depositing money to or withdrawing money from gambling sites. Here's a bunch of links about it all:
Sydney Morning Herald
By Jeff @ 5:43 PM
I thought I missed my chance to upgrade to Blogger Beta, but I didn't. I just switched. We'll see how it is. They have a new upgraded template thingy, so I can change around the layout of this thing. Expect some slight (and not so slight) changes in the near future.
By Jeff @ 3:31 PM
Earlier today, I was sitting at home. Bored. Woke up late. Sore back. Stiff torso. Lame TV. In a vegetative state. Basically. I get up to go out. To run errands. To wake up. Thinking that being outside would cure me of this daze I spent the "morning" in.
Everything in the outside world is in a fog to me. Visually, it feels like my eyes aren't taking everything in. Granted, my glasses are all scratched up, which I think adds to the problem (new glasses coming soon, btw). My senses feel dull. Like they're getting all this stimuli, but only sending 20% of it up to the brain. I went to a few places today. The comic shop, Best Buy, Borders. Nothing was engaging. Have you ever done things after having had a few drinks? Your wits are slow. It takes effort to process the things that are happening. That's how I've felt all day today, and I haven't had a drop of alcohol. It's like I've been drinking, without the buzz. Only the disorientation.
At Borders, I bought a GRE study guide in case I decide to go for a Masters in the fall. I read the first few pages, and it read like gibborish. I knew what the words were. I knew what they meant (except for perfidy, which I had never heard before), but I couldn't make sense of them. It's like my brain couldn't handle being engaged in such a way.
I wish I could explain why I feel this way, but I can't. This isn't the first time I've felt this way, either.
By Jeff @ 3:40 PM
On Tuesday, September 26th, General Pervez Musharraf, President of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan will be on The Daily Show. Thought some of you might be interested to check it out.
By Jeff @ 10:32 PM
This weekend was good. Hung with Barb. Drank a lot. We celebrated Rosh Hashanah at my Uncle's place, with 40 other people, and a lot of booze. I had to work Sunday night, but that doesn't count.
You guessed it, loyal fans. It's that day of days. The one day of the week that's so bad, it makes children quake in their shoes and causes grown men to cry. Yet today, Monday has been somewhat forgiving. For me, at least. If we could quantify what it truly means to be Monday, then compare today's Monday to the preconceived ideal of Monday, it might look something like this:
Today started out proper enough. Woke up groggy. Got in the shower a little late. Got on the road just barely late. Walked into work right on time, which means just barely late. Today's lunch ended up being a good one. We got new computers. And I made a ton of money. "How much is a ton?" I'm glad you asked. My tips today seemed pretty mediocre, until I got $30 from the IT people who installed the new system. $100 today. On a MONDAY!! I still sit in disbelief. Weirdest thing on my ride home, tho. I kept Mr. Franklin close to my hip, and my pocket started to get warm. Almost like it was burning a hole in my pocket...
I'm driving home, trying to think of what to buy at Best Buy or Amazon.com, when I address a more urgent need and buy beer at the store. I bought Boddingtons, sweet Boddingtons. And thanks in part to Barbie (and Tommy), I bought a 6-pack of Spaten Oktoberfest Beer. It's fucking delicious. Let the record show my initial reaction was "MMMM! that's damn tasty!"
Once drinking, I jumped on iTunes and bought a bunch of music ($55 worth).
Public Enemy- Muse Sick-n-Hour Mess Age
Jedi Mind Tricks- Servants in Heaven, Kings in Hell
Golem!- Fresh Off Boat
A bunch of Thelonious Monk tunes
Thanks to everyone who inspired my purchases today: Lex, Ryan, Eric, Dave (keys in my band, Dave), and myself. I have yet to listen to everything, but I've been listening to Golem! since dinner, and it's fucking enjoyable. It's punk rock klezmer. It's such a manic good time. Takes me back to my 3rd wave ska days in high school. This is a little more intellectual, though. A great, fun ass version of Hava Nagila called "Golem Hora." Search "Golem!" on your iTunes client. Now I'm off to Amazon.com to buy the 3-disc special edition of Kurosawa's Seven Samurai.
Tonight's a good night to veg out, too, which I will do while rotating my CD wallet tonight. New Prison Break on in 4 minutes, followed by Heroes on NBC at 9. It's about everyday people who develop "superpowers." I've seen a little bit on TV and heard on the radio and it sounds fucking great. It's a good time to be a couch potato.
By Jeff @ 7:32 PM
Happy New Year, all!
It's 247 on the first night of Rosh Hashanah. I'm at Barbie's, wide awake from the cappuccino I had when I was with Chris earlier, and high off the 4 (now 5) beers I've had since I've been here. Equilibrium just came on FX (well, 15-45 minutes ago), and I know I'm going to watch it to the end. I love this movie. It's as good as the first Matrix as far as I'm concerned.
Tomorrow night, we go to my Uncle B's for what ends up being a kickass Jewish dinner. I love all the Jewish holidays, but Rosh Hashanah is my favorite. From the food to the reason why we celebrate, to seeing my whole family, it should be a perfect night. Pics to follow.
By Jeff @ 2:52 AM
In the wake of my aborted eye surgery, I went to the optometrist to pick some new frames today. A little more expensive than I intended (including lenses, at least). I decided on going to glasses (instead of contacts) should I have needed an alternative to surgery. And if things don't work out for surgery at the beginning of next year, I'll have nice, new glasses. Before you ask, no I won't show a pic of them before I get 'em. The big reveal will be in 7-10 business days. They're nerd glasses, though, which I'm kind of excited about.
I will say this. My new glasses can be found here. A cold, frosty one to whoever can find it. I'll even add your shot of choice if you can pick the right color (or colors), too. There's only one person that's ineligible since she's already seen a pic of 'em, but I already buy her drinks when we go out, so it's fair.
By Jeff @ 3:36 PM
I just got a call from my eye surgeon, and he urged me to wait on surgery, since my astigmatism is so high, and my corneas are so thin. He said 1st Quarter next year will have better technology for eyes like mine, and that tech is 100% reversible. We'll see what the future hold. In any case, I'm getting new glasses until the surgery.
By Jeff @ 6:28 PM
Barb pointed this out to me the other day. Some guy's been uploading entire Prison Break eps in bite-sized chunks to YouTube. Thankfully, you can play vids full screen on YouTube now. I'm sure glad I haven't spent the $40 to buy the entire season on iTunes yet. Lets hope this guy keeps uploading, and YouTube keeps not giving a fuck.
By Jeff @ 2:14 AM
I just finished God of War, a PS2 game I bought last week. It's a great game. I forgot just how theraputic it is to mash buttons, kill monsters, level up, etc. If you're in need of a new PS2 game, if only for the sake of needing a distraction, spend $20 and have some fun. Oh yeah, it's based on Greek Mythology, so you can put that stuff you learned in 6th grade to good use.
By Jeff @ 12:32 PM
Seeing as how it's "International Talk Like a Pirate Day," I figured I'd post this great article, brought to my attention by Johnny Utah from BKV.TV:
Many of the pirates of yore were Jewish
As of last weekend, Disney had plundered $1 billion worldwide with "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest," and International Talk Like a Pirate Day -- that's Sept. 19, for you landlubbers -- has gone from an inside joke between two friends to a mock holiday celebrated in more than 40 countries.
Yet tales of Jewish piracy, which stretch back thousands of years, aren't in the public's consciousness, and Hollywood even has been known to remove a pirate's Jewish background. As a result, we're stuck with portrayals of pirates as wayward English seamen on a murderous rampage.
But now a forthcoming book hopes to change that image by focusing on Ladino-speaking Jews whose piracy grew out of the Inquisition. "The Jewish pirates were Sephardic. Once they were kicked out of Spain [in 1492], the more adventurous Jews went to the New World," said Ed Kritzler, whose yet-untitled book on Jewish pirates will be published by Doubleday in spring 2007.
Jewish piracy has been around since well before the Barbary pirates first preyed on ships during the Crusades. In the time of the Second Temple, Jewish historian Flavius Josephus records that Hyrcanus accussed Aristobulus of "acts of piracy at sea."
Read more at the source...
By Jeff @ 9:14 PM
I've worn glasses since I was 12, and contacts since I was 16. I'm sick of it all. I went in for a consult for LASIK 3 weeks ago, and I've been in strictly glasses for the last 4. My surgery is set for Friday morning. Not only is my surgeon is one of the top eye surgeons in the country, he's also a laser researcher for the FDA. I've been warned that my astigmatism is high enough to warrant a possible second surgery after ample recovery time (3 months), but that doesn't bother me. Not only do I have complete confidence in the abilities of the doc, but if I DO have to go in for a second surgery, it's free of cost.
If you need to get in touch with me, be sure you do it by Thrusday night. On Friday morning, I'm turning my cell phone off for a while. Phone should be back in business that night, but all you internet junkies better wait until Sunday.
If all goes well, I'll actually be able to see, and I'm looking forward to seeing everybody through new eyes.
By Jeff @ 5:10 PM
I spent Saturday at Barbie's. Had fun. Didn't want to come home for work. Work wasn't fun. It's hard to go from a lazy weekend to having to work, and work was full of bullshit. I was an hour and a half late for rehearsal, too. We went out to Denny's for dessert afterwards. That was cool.
Before I go to bed, I'll leave you all with this pic I took coming home in traffic today, the subject of the pic being why there was traffic.
By Jeff @ 1:56 AM
I've been having problems with a coworker at the restaurant, and it's been bothering the fuck out of me. Usually when I have problems with someone (or someone has problems with me), it doesn't come to petty behavior, insults, name-calling, or talking behind someone's back. There's this lady that works at Z's, who I trained just before I left. Let's call her "D." I always thought she was nice, friendly. Maybe not the sharpest knife, but I felt her heart was in teh right place. A couple of weeks ago, on ssslllllooooowwww Labor Day, I inadvertently did something to throw her off. A small thing, too. A "whoops, I didn't realize you left it like that" thing. Easy to fix. Not worth a second thought. No malign thoughts on my part. Yet, she had a fucking conniption. And in all honesty, I could give a shite. I told her I was just following policy, and had no way of knowing her needs. If I had known she was going to have a shit fit, I'd've left everything untouched. Since then, she's been on the warpath with me. Throwing stink eyes at me, talking a mess behind my back to several coworkers, and making life less than happy in the workplace.
At the place I work, we all have fun with each other. Get in each other's way, move things when someone's back is turned, playful insults. The things that friends (or friendly coworkers) do. This last Monday, I intentionally got in the way of this woman, thinking things were all good, she snapped and got in my face, "You are so fucking rude! You're always in the way!" and various other shit. I apologized and got out of the way, but that was too little, too late. I got the cold shoulder for nearly the rest of the shift. I was on a double, so near the end of my first shift, I was fucking ready to get out of there, and I wasn't going to let anybody say peep about it. Managers were in a meeting, I had no tables, so I cashed out, ordered food, and got the fuck off the clock. While I'm sitting, eating, she comes to within 10 feet of me, hiding behind a wall to avoid the managers I'm sitting near, and starts barking orders at me. I tell her "no, I'm off," and she starts yelling at me to get up and do some shit I "forgot."
Understand, loyal fans, that D and I are at the same employment level. We're both servers. She isn't my superior. In fact, I still hold about a year of senority over her from my previous 3 years working there. Let's not forget the fact that if someone angrily demands me to do ANYTHING, my first instinct is to do nothing; to ignore. Even from a superior. I endured the bitching, and chilled out for a minute. I find out later that while I'm eatiing with another server, trying to make sense of why D flipped out, she's bitching to someone else about me. I went to management as soon as I could, and I have a new respect for my GM for the way he handled the problem. I told him I was being somewhat of an ass (intending to be playful), and that she flipped out. He seemed surprised to hear my complaint, and pulls out the pocket management manual that clearly states that as part of the company's definition of "teamwork," employees must be "a pleasure to be around," and from my description of events, she was far from that. He said he'd talk to her Tuesday after I got off about what happened.
Tuesday, while I was on, there's a guy I work with who's on my MySpace friends list and is into my band. I use "JeffX" as my stage name and myspace handle, and that's what he calls me. So while he was talking to D, and I walked by and he exclaimed "JeffX!" to which I threw up metal \m/ which happened to be behind D's head. A poor oversight on my part. I had spent the whole shift tactfully avoiding her, and at teh end, she comes up to me as asks what that means.
"It's rock & roll," I say.
"Isn't it the sign of the devil?"
"Well, yeah, but it's rock & roll." At this point, I figure she's attempting to be nice, and is just making coversation. Until she pettily says
"Maybe you should put those horns on your own head."
Frustrated, I ask politely (but firmly) "please D, don't bother talking to me anymore." Then she starts flapping her gums, doing her best chicken impression. Without hesitation, I roll my eyes and walk away.
I've had today off. Thursday, I'll discover the reprocussions of what's happened over Tuesday afternoon and today. I've heard word that pretty much every member of the staff has a problem with her, and that these problems have been documented. I've also heard she's been fired once before and somehow got her job back. I've made it clear to the powers that be that the last thing I want is a feud. I just want to be treated fairly. We'll see if I have any updates tomorrow.
By Jeff @ 10:31 PM
I opened a bottle of Skullsplitter Ale (by the Orkney Brewery, Scotland, UK), with the intent to review it. It's so good, that I can't review it. I'm gonna sit and enjoy my two bottles, maybe buy a couple more this week and then share my review. Just buy it.
Real review to come soon.
By Jeff @ 10:10 PM
I went to the taqueria for some tacos, and this bum (that's right, a fuckin' bum) starts asking me about my car. I tell him it's a good car.
Me: No, Japanese.
B: What? What're you, a fuckin' communist?!
M: Hey, man. These things happen.
B: [puzzled look] ...can I have some change.
M: Um. In a minute.
Why insult someone then ask 'em for change? I didn't give him any, btw. The dollar I would've given him, I give at the taqueria for the guy in front of me who shorted the girl at the register.
By Jeff @ 11:36 PM
Worked a little & made some money. Went to Kevin's new (kick ass) place to hang with Kevin & Ryan and to drink beer. Played poker, too. During the game, Ryan tapped the bottom of his beer bottle to the mouth of mine (at my request, since I did it to him) which caused it to foam up SO MUCH, that when I put my mouth over it to drink the foam, it foamed up into my sinuses and came out my nostrils. Good times. At least I won at poker. Ace-high straight, baby. Thanks again for the beer, Kev.
By Jeff @ 1:20 AM
In the Venture Bros Season 1 DVD, there's a deleted scene from "The Trial Of the Monarch," my favorite episode of the season. While on trial, the judge tries to impress upon The Monarch that he's under trial by a jury of his peers. "PEERS!!!" yells The Monarch. He them proceeds to irately give a jury-long list of his peers to the judge.
A list of my peers would read as follows!!:
Flying Squid & Tiger-rific
Lord Mostly Magic
King Fantastic Outfit
Fee Waiver of the Tubes
Suicide Girl Keegan
Bill "Superfoot" Wallace
Happy-Go-Chucky & Swiss Mystery
And my Eighth Grade Earth Science Teacher, Mr. Tringe!
Oh, and Bizarro Oscar Wilde as an alternate.
"Bizarro Oscar Wilde." Dammit, I wish they had left this scene in.
By Jeff @ 1:33 AM
Reaper Redemption Red Ale, ReaperAle.com
Tonight is a good night. For dinner, I chose In & Out, a California original. To pair with my 3x3 and fries, The Big Lebowski on DVD created and filmed in LA, and Reaper Ale's Redemption Red Ale, made in Vista, CA. When I saw this one on the shelf, the huge Grim Reaper caught my eye. Then when I saw it's a California beer, I had to buy it (at a price point of $3.29 @ BevMo). I haven't done a local beer yet, and it's time to give my favorite place in the world it's fair shake.
Made in Vista, CA, (70 miles south of my place, on Hwy 78 between I-5 & I-15) the Reaper brewery makes only ales... except for their Mortality Stout, but that's another review. The Redemption Red Ale is deep red in color. It's strikingly red. Not cloudy. Just a beautiful sea of red between you and whatever's on the other side of your glass.
My first glass begins with a thick, tan head. And it holds a head well. It's got this pungent, sweet hop bouquet in the nose, then the deep hops and caramel on the palate. The aromatics of this beer are incredible immediately go bitter. If you're not into bitter beers, stay away from the Reaper, you baby. If bitter's your thing, go out tomorrow and buy this beer. Show your taste buds who's boss by kicking them in the balls.
I'm on my second glass, and it's even better than the first. This ale is rich, flavorful, and bold. The facets of this beer are what make it worth drinking: The bold aroma, the strong hop flavor, and the aftertaste of spice and bitter. This ale is aggressive. No mistake. It's not your dad's foil-capped pilsner. It has bite, and it bites you hard. Two minutes after a pull, I can still taste it, and it's calling me back for more. This beer is the reason why I started doing these reviews.
1.0 is perfect in each category,
0.1 is the complete opposite of perfect.
Use your imagination for everything between.
The perfect beer would be scored "4.0/4"
Reaper Redemption Red Ale
By Jeff @ 12:52 AM
Can it, you're Bender!
In the robot world, you are a bit of a lightweight in the colossal death league, but you do mutter "kill all humans" in your sleep - and after all, it's the thought that counts. We love you because you drink, steal, smoke cigars and gamble away things that aren't even yours. You've got what it takes. You're the right stuff.
Tell the world you're the Homer Simpson of the future with the following picture:
Which Colossal Death Robot Are You?
Brought to you by Rum and Monkey
By Jeff @ 1:43 PM
I started an account on LiveJournal, in case I decide to leave a comment for the 3 people I already know who have one. Come see my sparse, shitty lj page:
If you're on there already, feel free to add me as a friend, or whatever. I'm not really sure how it works.
I remember the days when lj was tres elite, and you had to know someone who had an account to get in. I didn't know anyone who had an account in those days, 'cept Kyle, but he'd given his freebie away. Now, you can just walk up and get in... Guess I should lose my lj grudge, hmm?
By Jeff @ 9:43 PM
The National Ale of Wales, Double Dragon Ale (smooth) is made by the Felinfoel Brewery in Llanelli, Wales. Family Owned and operated since 1878. When Chris and I were in Beverages & More last week, we both saw this, and I walked on by, continuing to browse. Before we left, Chris ask that I give it a try in honor of his ancestry, and I said of course. I'll admit, when anyone's ancestors get involved, I have raised standards. And from a beer named "Double Dragon," I have high expectations.
This is a dark beer, not as dark as Newcastle, not as light as Boddington's. If you were to pour a glass of iced tea, with just a little bit of ice, then let the ice melt, you'd have the color of this beer. It's cloudy, but it doesn't have that "unfiltered" look. It's cloudy as in "murky." Based on appearance, my feelings are half-hearted at best. However, were I to order it in a bar, I might very well take a second look before drinking it. It smells of fruit, initially, then that opens up into a toasted almond or cashew, finally revealing a hint of coffee. The taste starts out like the aroma, a touch on the side of fruit. That toastedness lends itself to a very weak dark roast or a weak burnt-rice tea. Not what I care to gravitate toward when drinking a beer.
As it warms up, I really can't taste that much more in terms of flavor. I thought the temperature was just inhibiting it, but I'm now 20 minutes into it, and there's not much to brag about. I keep looking at this beer, and expecting a burst of malt and hops in every mouthful. But instead, I'm getting a weak chorus of hops, no malt, and no caramel. All the things a beer like this should have in spades.
Buying this ale gave me the urge to hook up my old NES (which still works) to play the Double Dragon game, while drinking Double Dragon Ale. My first game of Double Dragon in nearly 20 years started out fun enough. Punch, punch. Kick, kick. Move around. Jump. Then it got old. The novelty of the game wore off within 10 minutes. That's how it is with this beer. "Whoa, Double Dragon Ale!" I thought when I saw this brew. And as I've been drinking it, nothing about it has impressed me. I can't say it's bad, per se. It's just a boring beer. And if this is the national beer of Wales, I don't know what that says of the taste buds of the Welsh. There were other Welsh beers at BevMo. Maybe I'll give those a try next time I give Wales a chance.
.0 is perfect in each category,
0.1 is the complete opposite of perfect.
Use your imagination for everything between.
The perfect beer would be scored "4.0/4"
Double Dragon Ale
By Jeff @ 7:32 PM
Went out to the business park to detail my car this afternoon. I started at 5p, and didn't leave until 11p. My car is CLEAN! Washed once with Dawn (dish soap), dried, then used the Mothers Clay Bar and some special cleaner (3 hours to do my whole car, at least). Then washed with Mothers Car Soap, dried, and applied a coat of wax to the whole xB. It looks fucking sweet! Shiny! Pics to come.
Got home at 1130, started making dinner, cause I was starving. Just finished eating. Sauteed chicken breast and steamed spinach over white rice with a Boddington's Ale cream pan sauce that I whipped up. It was perfect. And there's chicken & rice left over for fried rice tomorrow! Pics to come.
By Jeff @ 12:52 AM
When you go to the doctor, what's the first thing you do? Sign in.
Today at my Optometrist's office, I showed up at 2pm, when their lunch break ended. I had an appointment. I walked up to the door as the girl inside was unlocking it. Like, as soon as she unlatched the lock, my hand was turning the handle. It was a feat of perfect timing. Unbeknownst to me, there were people standing outside the office, waiting to get in (the thing to understand is that my Eye Doc is essentially in a strip mall, surrounded by stores; needlecraft on one side, a bike store and a bank on the other). So I walk in, and sign in. There was this old guy (50-60 years old), who says to me as I'm signing in
"Hey buddy, there's other people who were waiting outside longer than you!" Very angry. Very gruff. He was eager to get loud, and today, I woke up a Nihilist.
"Good." Says I, pen in hand.
Then, he says something to me about there having been a woman waiting outside, and something about should've let her go first. I just looked at him, shrugged my shoulders, and gave him a "whatever."
Out of the three of us, I was last to be served, and I couldn't've cared less.
What compels people to just speak up and talk shit when it doesn't make a difference? I guess some people just like to hear the sound of their own voice, even when it's bitching.
By Jeff @ 10:33 PM
Q: What time is it?
Chris and I hit BevMo today, and I made a few purchases.
From Left to Right:
Samuel Smith's Organic Lager (England)
Skullsplitter Orkney Ale (Scotland)
Double Dragon (Wales)
Now, a little about why I chose these brews:
Ryan picked Smith's Lager for me to review one night while drinking at his place. We drank a bottle each, and I liked it, but I was too drunk by the end to formulate any more opinions on it. So I'm giving it a fair shake soon enough.
How can you turn down a beer called "Skullsplitter?" Especially when it's from my ancestry's country of origin. Recommended highly by Caballero "BrainofJ," this was the last bottle on the shelf at BevMo today. I'll either have to drink one glass carefully, or just hope they restock in the next day or two, since my usual par for these reviews is two glasses per beer.
Made in Munich, Spaten is always at the fridge at Barb's work. Whenever I end up there, I'm always offered a beer. "Any beer," I'm told, and I go for the Spaten, and Barb says "you can't drink that, it's Tommy's." Tommy's a German guy (recently moved from Germany) that works at Barb's work. If he's passing up countless other beer from countless other countries for this little slice of Deutschland, I've at least got to give it a chance.
At Chris' request, I'm to review Double Dragon Ale, the sum-total of his Welsh ancestry. I wanted to review it, cause I used to play "Double Dragon" on NES as a kid (might still have the cartridge, actually). It's a Win-Win. Maybe I'll play it while reviewing this beer.
Also, in an amazing display of giftgiving, Eric set me up with a new keychain bottle opener for my birthday. Sorry Homer fans, it's time for Mr. Simpson to retire. The new opener is from SuckUK, and it's a Skeleton Key! It's fucking awesome. I tried it tonight with some Stella, and it's works like a charm.
By Jeff @ 2:32 AM
Had a quick last day of coaching this morning, then met up with Chris in the afternoon. We went around the City of Orange, including the Orange Circle, bumming around. There's a fuckload of antique stores there, if you've never been, and I've never really gone through any of 'em until today.
Tonight, Eric, Chris, and I hit the mug, lit up some cigars, and walked the Circle and the Chapman College campus at night, which is something we've been doing for a few years now.
I took a lot of pics today, including some real eyebrow raisers, but I'll let you discover those on your own.
Jeff @ Flickr
By Jeff @ 2:10 AM