Archive for June, 2007

Ah Choo…led you

Tuesday, June 19th, 2007

Over the weekend the conversation turned to sneezing… again. A proposition was placed on the table: pretend to sneeze in a meeting and see if you can fool anyone. We decided that was a great idea. Or maybe we decided it was a dumb idea. I don’t remember. Uuhhhhhh.

I tried faking a sneeze during a meeting on Monday. I have violent, spastic sneezes so I really tried to do it up. I suppose it was successful. I mean, I was “blessed” and all, but I can’t say I was happy with my performance. I certainly didn’t believe I was sneezing. I guess I’m not a method sneezer.

Moral: Be vigilant when those around you sneeze. They might be faking… or worse!

Asparag-wah?

Saturday, June 16th, 2007

Remember that asparagus that started growing in my back yard a year after I planted it? Well now it looks like this:

asparagus2.jpg

What am I supposed to do with that thing?

Dogs and Puppies

Monday, June 11th, 2007
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I’m a habitual dogsitter. Seen here are two of my favorite boarders: Daisy and Latke. Daisy is a million-year-old deaf pug who belongs to Allard, Jellyvision’s art director. When I was dogsitting her earlier this year, my brother had recently gotten a puggle puppy: young Latke, who has barely cracked 6 months. Latke is a total spaz.

I thought it would be fun for them to meet. After all, dogs like other dogs, right?I brought Daisy over to Latke’s house for a playdate. Bad idea. The next hour was one of the most stressful of my life. It went something like this:

1. Latke jumps on Daisy thinking she’s playing.
2. Daisy doesn’t enjoy playing, gets agitated and tries to walk away.
3. Being old and slow, Daisy doesn’t get away and gets tackled by Latke.
4. Daisy establishes herself as the alpha dog and barks Latke into submission (pictured.)
5. Latke and/or Daisy are restrained at opposite ends of the room.
6. Latke eventually wriggles free.
7. Repeat step 1.

It was like watching a one of those little kids who’s really into professional wrestling trying to show his grandma how The Camel Clutch works. At least neither of them pooped under my desk.

We Were Playing Possum. I Lost.

Friday, June 8th, 2007
possum.jpg

I was walking home from a friend’s house when I happened to catch a glimpse of this guy out of the corner of my eye. He scared the crap out of me. He was just sitting there perfectly still — even after I fumbled for a camera, accidentally took out my phone instead, dropped my phone, looked in a different pocket, found the camera, and then took a picture.

I tried the red-eye reduction tool on him but I guess it’s not made to work on possums. (Opossums? ‘Possums?)

A Post of Healing Light Wounds

Thursday, June 7th, 2007
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Through a strange series of events (I don’t know, I wasn’t really paying attention) I ended up in possession of the most confusing board game ever: The Order of the Stick: Dungeon of Dorukan. The rule book is 30 pages long and there are about a blablillion miscellaneous cards of various sizes, not to mention the hefty bag of infant-choking plastic and glass tokens to deal with.

We spent about 45 minutes setting up the game and reading the rules before playing two turns and then retiring to watch “The Deadliest Catch.” Someday, though, I’m gonna play the crap out of this game. Pages 17-20 of the rulebook look especially fun.

The game is based on a comic that parodies Dungeons & Dragons, and now that I’ve spent the last three hours reading it, I’m reminded how much fun it is to play Dungeons & Dragons. I haven’t played since… well… honestly, it was just a couple months ago. I was playing with a chaotic-good barbarian gnome whose name, like most gnome names, is too complicated for me to write. He was a spry little fellow until he had an unfortunate run-in with a donkey (18xp!) that I really can’t get into right now.

Not long after our first adventure the dungeon master’s wife gave birth, thus abandoning the poor gnome to a purgatory of level 2 mediocrity. He was never heard from again.

P.S.  I think this might be the first time the phrase “dungeon master’s wife” has ever been written.

A Living Cubs Fan’s Last Request

Tuesday, June 5th, 2007

Back in March I received an e-mail announcing the start of the fantasy baseball league I’ve played in for years. I actually wrote a whole big thing about baseball season getting started that I never posted. It went something like this:

“I think last year was one of the worst years to be a Cubs fan. I know those of you who were around in the 50′s and 60′s (i.e., Dad) may dispute this, but there was something about last year that was particularly brutal. They weren’t even lovable losers. They were just losers.”

This year might be worse: losing on a walk-off hit batsman, being thrown out on a walk… they really are amazing.

Normally before our fantasy baseball draft I rate some Cubs players a little higher than they deserve. I figure, if I’m going to have mediocre players, I might as well have mediocre players I want to root for. This year I forgot to rate the players and for the first time ever I don’t have any Cubs on my team. Last time I checked I was in first place.

No one understood it like the late Steve Goodman:

Superman!

Sunday, June 3rd, 2007
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I walked through the Lincoln Square Mayfest just in time to catch the Jesse White Tumblers.  As is often the case, Jesse White himself was there, and he was wearing white pants.  The Honorable Secretary of State did some headstands and other near-tumbling activities as Chicago youths between the ages of 6 and 16 bounded about the street.  I’ve probably seen them perform 100 times, yet it’s one of those things I’ve never gotten sick of.  I’ve also never seen them screw up.  That’s kind of weird, I think.

Today, as one fella was flip flopping and flipping and flopping… his shorts fell off.  But dammit if he didn’t stick the landing.

A-La-Peanutbutter-Sandwiches

Saturday, June 2nd, 2007

I saw that movie The Prestige the other night and loved it. I loved it so much that when I got to work the next day I was really excited to talk to everyone about it. Here is a one-act play summarizing our water-cooler conversation:

ME: Hey did you see The Prestige?
EVERYONE ELSE I WORK WITH: Yeah. We all saw it, like, 6 months ago when it came out, and we all already talked about it. Pfft.

Unlike the movie, it was a little disappointing. But really, what was I going to say about it?