Friday, September 29, 2006

Beer & Bible Study and Cell Phone Art

I am lucky enough to share two great things with all of my faithful readers. And I'm sure both of you will love it. First, thanks to Luke and Joel (I think), we now have an official MEN'S Group website: Beer & Bible Study.

It will feature our group, as well as the branches that have formed from Texas to Alaska. Brilliant! This is exciting, so be sure to check it out. And a big thanks to the guys for putting this together! We even get our own email address. So sweet.

Second, Rab got those Cell Phone pictures up that I was talking about earlier this week. That was a lot of fun. Wish we could've tried some more things though. The possiblities seem endless. Maybe this weekend? Anyways, be sure to check those pictures and the other awesome ones Rab has here:
A Whistling Train Photos

And a bonus great thing is that Luke updated his blog layout. I am extremely jealous, and hopefully some day I'll have the time, energy and resources to do the same. As for now, all we can do is admire him and drool. Maybe now he'll actually do some blogging. Check out the new Seraphim Sighs and Wonders.

Hope everyone has a great weekend. I know I will. I think I've got a Monopoly game to win this weekend, along with a showing of Nacho Libre. Tough to beat that.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

25 Million Reasons Why He Should Be Alive?

Terrell Owens of the Dallas Cowboys is in the midst of another fiasco. No big surprise. He took too many painkillers and his publicist had to call 911. Either he did it on purpose, trying to kill himself, or it was an accident. Whatever, we may never know. The distrubing thing for me when reading about this was what Owens' publicist, Kim Etheredge, said when explaining why Owens would never kill himself:

"Terrell has 25 million reasons why he should be alive."

She is referring to his recent $25 million contract with the Cowboys. Is this for real? I'm sorry, but I find that a bit disturbing. I understand she probably didn't mean for it to come off the way I'm taking it, and I'm sorry to say it in the context of what could be a terrible moment in someone's life, but if those were my 25 million reasons for living, I would probably want to kill myself.

If you think about it, she probably thought he tried to kill himself in the first place. She walks into a room, sees him all messed up with an empty bottle of painkillers next to him. I doubt the first thing that went through her mind was, "Oh, T.O. You are a feisty one. You've gone and accidentally taken too many pills again." So she calls 911 and now she's probably trying to sound convincingly supportive of her client. Whatever. It just disgusts me that she would be thinking of that when coming up with reasons for someone to be alive. And I realize it's unfair of me to make a judgment call like this, but for pete's sake, she's a publicist and should know better.

Owens denies he tried to hill himself

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Where's George?

I meant to blog about this awhile ago and just forgot. Whilst I was camping two weeks ago, I had to buy a bit of firewood. The wood was $4 for a bundle and I paid with a five dollar bill. Upon receiving my dollar in change, I noticed some strange markings on the front of the bill. Upon further inspection, these words had been stamped near George Washington's head:

Enter Serial # To See Where This Bill Has Been.

I was excited to get back home and find out exactly where George had been. Now I finally know. The website is a pretty fun idea. You just type in your zip code and you get to see where the bill has traveled and when. My particular George started in Arizona on July 17, 2005. It was in Bloomington, Indiana on August 2, 2005. Then a year later it was in my hands. I imagine he has been plenty of other places, but nobody entered him into the site.

I wish the site had a way to confirm the zip code (through IP address or something) to make sure that nobody cheats. I'm going to try to make a point to spend George when I'm out of town. Just to make sure he travels properly. Maybe I'll give him to Ike to take to Alaska. He'd probably get stuck up there for a while.

The only bad thing about this whole experience is that I've become quite attached to my George. The thought of spending him hardly seems worth the dollar of merchandise that I would receive in return. Dangit. Good thing they didn't stamp it onto a twenty.

You can view where my George has been here

PS- Is "whilst" really a word? If it is, it must be the most underrated word in the english dictionary. We should all make a point to use it more often.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Hookahs, Man Pong, Cell Phone Art and a Manning Naked Boot Leg

Last weekend was very eventful and fun for me. It started out, like most great weekends do, with a Friday night MEN'S Group meeting. It was great to have Ike back, even if temporarily. We did the usual reading through the week's scripture, doing some prayer, drinking some beer, and slapping the losers in a game of team "Ro Sham Bo." In honor of Ike's return, Luke brought over his hookah. If you've never smoked a hookah, it's definitely a treat. Friday night was no exception and we all enjoyed the gurgling goodness that Luke's hookah produced. Thanks Luke!

Later that night we indulged ourselves with some two player Man Pong. That is always a great time as well. The next day, my wife noticed the tell-tale signs of a Man Pong game on my chest and asked what they were. After convincing her that I didn't have a horrid case of ringworm, I then had to explain how I really got them. After about a half hour, I was able to convince her that I wasn't secretly gay. Good thing she didn't come outside around 12:30 Friday night to see a group of about eight half-naked men (including her husband) leaving the garage when the power went out. That would've been real hard to explain.

Saturday we had a little cookout for Ike, or maybe Allie. Heck, I don't know, but we had a cookout. At some point in the night, Rab had us creating these cool pictures with our cell phones. Hopefully he'll upload a few and I'll link you to them, but some were pretty sweet. He was using a slow shutter speed and we would try to create stuff using light. Anyways, you'll have to see if he gets the pics up. Thanks to Ike for some great deer meat as well.

The highlight of the day on Sunday was watching Peyton Manning run a naked bootleg to trot into the endzone. What a great call. Tough game, good win for the Colts. Thanks to the WeyCoolDeen house for having us over for the game. It was a lot of fun, and I'm just glad the Colts won.

Friday, September 22, 2006

World Champion Kite Flying

Happy Friday to everyone. I'm too lazy to do a real blog post today, so I'm taking an easier route. If you haven't seen this guy do kite flying, you've got to check it out. The clip is long, but worth watching. Turn up the sound too. Then just sit back, relax and enjoy the magic of kite-flying. I know it sounds boring, but this really is cool. I never was good at flying kites. Guess I haven't tried in like 20 years or so. Anyways, enjoy your weekend, Go Colts! and check out some sweet kite-flying action.

Ray Bethell: Multiple Kite World Champion

Thursday, September 21, 2006

More of MySpam: "Sword" from "Samuarai"

In my daily perusal of spam mail, I've come across another interesting one. Not quite as good as the previous two I've talked about, but this one had an element to it that I'd like to address. I find it often in spam mail, and I would like to know why it's there. Please help, if you know the answer.

First off, the email was from a character claiming to be "Samuarai." Since everything from China is of great quality, trustworthy, and in-touch with the spiritual nature of the world, I thought this would be a worthwhile email to check out. Because Samurais, as everyone knows, come from China.

The subject line read "sword," so I was hoping for a chance to win a magical sword from some legendary Chinese samurai warrior. I opened the email and was not so surprisingly disappointed. I should have known it wasn't really from China, because they misspelled "samurai."

It turned out to be an email from someone trying to get me to buy their stock. But that's not the interesting part. At the bottom of the email were two paragraphs of jumbled text. I've seen this before in spam mail and always wondered why they put it there. I would start to read part of it, and just when I thought it was beginning to make sense, they would throw me off into another discussion. It really blows my mind. I'm going to put the text in here, but I warn you: reading it might give you a seizure.

"some amazing vintage video footage featuring Master Hatsumi Click here Every wonder what baby stroller looked Wonder Another desktop wallpaper added Headie way teaser pic needs pirate their sword Pirate Skeleton figures just here. good/bad psychic pictures movies games babes cold hard facts training videos wisdom
will them while very own Babe Sarah October issue Inside KungFu magazine See
Free Shipping items store. stickers shirts toys much Wanna see some amazing vintage video footage featuring Master Hatsumi desktop wallpaper added Headie way
Privacy Policy copy Best Ninja Website Planet Check page Add friends list and keep updated ninja news. Thanks Kage help. Looks like blue Samuarai action figure has been As sell these they will them while very own Babe Sarah October issue Inside KungFu magazine See her profile Free Shipping items store. stickers shirts
are spelled Try different keywords. general fewer your on can try Answers for expert help with search. Get the latest messages emailed to Alerts. Terms of Service toys much Wanna
CONTACT Powered NWIIS Martial Arts Supplies Uniforms Sparring
added Headie way teaser pic needs pirate their sword Pirate Skeleton figures just here. good/bad psychic pictures movies games babes cold hard facts training videos wisdom etiquette many faces vs. idiot books magic kujiin weapons history kunoichi tools knowledge stealth poisons clothing fighting arts tshirts magazines posters buttons"

My favorite phrases: "every wonder what baby stroller looked," "teaser pic needs pirate," "many faces vs. idiot books," and "stealth poisons."

I know they do this to get through my spam filter. Or at least that is my guess. Does anyone know for sure? Have you tried doing your own jumbled paragraph? It really is tougher than you think. Here's my attempt:

"jolly peanut tiny rabbit spades. across ample Ocean newest. Get yours now. try my apple for Scruff OWOH care. Created transaction with Buyer no down. revised to meet code. soon Elves every one now .beats through mine basic ohio life blog. tree Phone. i love lamp. i quit."

Well, that's my spam fun for the day. Can't wait to see the google hits I get from this post. To see more examples of MySpam, read below.

Mind Control Powers

Rob Huge Banks and Get Away With It

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Indianapolis Colts Choose a Mascot

If you didn’t already know, the Indianapolis Colts have chosen a mascot and revealed his new name. The mascot is a fluffly, friendly-looking colt. His name?

Blue. Blue the mascot. Actually, I don’t even know if it’s a he. Blue looks like a blue Elmo with a hippo’s mouth. His intimidation abilities are along the same lines as a Chucky Cheese band member. Good thing the Colts don’t already have the image of being a “soft” team. Oh wait.

I’m not sure exactly what I would be looking for in an NFL mascot, but I can tell you that Blue is not it. Maybe we should’ve had a huge horseshoe. His name could be Lucky. Lucky would already have his arms in position to signal touchdowns and field goals. When the other team scored, he could do a headstand which would make him look like a frowny face. Hunter Smith could use Lucky to work on his PAT attempts. Okay, maybe finding a good mascot is harder than I thought. I dare you to try to do better.

As it stands, we’re stuck with Blue. Guess I better start getting used to him. The only positive I can find in this moniker is that hundreds of drunken Colts fans will have a damn good reason to sporadically yell, “You’re my boy, Blue!”

Read IndyStar's columnist Bob Kravitz's opinion on Blue here.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

September 19th: International Talk Like a Pirate Day

Today is Talk Like a Pirate Day. Thanks to Shawn over at Hoosierplew for the heads up on this one.

I love pirates. So naturally, I was excited to hear that this day existed. I have a co-worker who has been marking the days off his calendar until today. I thought it would be a fun day. He has been talking like a pirate all morning and something tells me he'll probably be able to keep it up for the whole day. He's ruining my love of piracy. And his "Yar!" is a total disgrace. If you can't properly "Yar!," you shouldn't be trying to speak like a pirate.

Isn't it funny how when you're doing something that annoys other people, it's so much fun for you. If I would've been the first one to start talking like a pirate all day, I would've thought it was great. Now I'm annoyed. So make sure you're the first one to start talking like a pirate today, or your day may be ruined. And be sure you know how to give a good "Yar!"

Monday, September 18, 2006

McCormick's Creek: City Boy Goes Camping

This weekend the wife and I camped out at McCormick’s Creek for my birthday. It was perfect weather and we had a great time. I’ve decided to just make a list of some of the things I learned while camping this weekend. So here is my “Top 33 Things I Learned While Camping This Weekend” list:

1) Never forget to bring your digital camera when camping.

2) Beef Jerkey is the best snack to have on any road trip.

3) Beef Jerkey is not the best thing to eat when you are trying to refrain from dumping for an entire weekend.

4) If possible, never take a dump in a latrine.

5) When choosing your campsite, try to pick the one that is farthest from the latrine. Your wife may be upset that she has to walk a ways to get to the restroom, but that’s her fault for not just peeing in the woods like a man.

6) If you bring a large air mattress, also bring a pump. Unless you want to see your wife pass out when trying to blow it up.

7) If you bring an air mattress that is larger than the entrance to your tent, be sure to inflate the mattress after you put it in the tent.

8) Leaves make smoke, not fire.

9) Few things are more satisfying than starting a fire.

10) Use dry wood when starting a fire.

11) When I’m trying to start my fire, don’t come over to me with dry wood and a starter block and tell me how I remind you of your kids. You remind me of my dad, so stop trying to do it for me and let me figure it out. Especially after I’ve already been struggling and now have it going.

12) If you come over to me and give me dry wood and a starter block and tell me I remind you of your kids, you’d better be the same guy who let me borrow your electric air pump to inflate my oversized air mattress. Otherwise, I might be annoyed.

13) My wife is scared of raccoons.

14) Jalepeño chips, brats and beer are not helpful when trying to refrain from dumping for a weekend.

15) One of the few things more satisfying than starting a fire is sitting by your fire while watching some other guy struggle with his fire.

16) The only thing more satisfying than that is when the same guy pours tons of lighter fluid on his fire, it still doesn’t start, and he cusses under his breath while his wife tries to keep quiet.

17) Contrary to common sense, basic reason and historical evidence, my wife is convinced that raccoons frequently jump from treetops and attack campers with their razor sharp claws and menacing teeth. The only warning a camper is given is the horrific hissing noise that a raccoon makes right before it strikes.

18) Few things are more annoying than bright lanterns, loud children, people walking by to use the latrines, interstate noise and a train. Especially when you’re trying to enjoy a quiet, peaceful and dark evening while camping with your wife.

19) Air mattresses lose a lot of air throughout the course of a night.

20) Morning breath is at least four times worse when camping.

21) Horseback riding is more fun when you’re eight years old than when you’re twenty-seven.

22) “Hung like a horse” is not a phrase to be taken lightly.

23) Few things are funnier than kids asking their parents what that enormous schlong underneath the horse is.

24) Saddle sore doesn’t quite describe the beating that my crotch takes when horseback riding.

25) A horse pooping is pretty funny too.

26) Spelunking is more fun when you’re eight years old than when you’re twenty-seven.

27) Never go through a cave with your wife carrying only one flashlight.

28) If you ever go through a cave with your wife and only have one flashlight, be sure you are the one holding the flashlight.

29) There are lots of things to hit your head on when you’re going through a cave.

30) Hitting your head on rocks hurts more when you’re twenty-seven than it does when you’re eight.

31) Being dirty is relative.

32) Few things are better than a cool shower and a long dump at home after camping for a weekend.

33) Being twenty-seven isn't that much different than being twenty-six. But it's a lot different from being eight.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Happy Birthday to me and "Man-Pong"

Gosh I feel old. I know “old’ is a relative term and I hate how coworkers are quick to remind me how young I am. Just because you’re 40, doesn’t make me any younger. Not that I’m depressed about it or anything, it’s just that feeling of being around for a while. Then I’m again reminded of all I wanted to do and haven’t done yet. That’s where it gets depressing. Although I did get married and buy a house within the last year, so that’s pretty good. Anyways, the wife and I are camping this weekend, so that should be fun.

Yesterday the fellas came over for some beer and ping pong. Jon and Tim were kind enough to entertain us with a round of “man-pong.” This is where the opponents face each other in a shirtless duel. The winner of each point gets to smack the ping-pong ball at the bare chest of the loser. It’s quite an entertaining game to watch. The marks left by each hit are particularly interesting. They look like ringworm. Anyways, that was fun. Thanks to the guys for making the bday a little more special. Nothing says “Happy Birthday” like a few drunk men hitting each other in the bare chest with ping pong balls. (Sniff…)

Man Pong is also a place in Burma.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Mind Control Powers? Count me in!

I got another spam email today that I thought I should share. First, let me show you what it said, then we can discuss it.

The subject line was, “Art, making others bend to your every will and wish?” Which isn’t really a question, but oh well- it was enough for me to open the email.

Inside I found this short letter addressed to me:

"Hey Art -

I finally completed my free 11-part e-mail course on
how to hypnotize(!) almost anyone, anywhere instantly -
for fun, love or profit... ;-) You can grab it today at:


Who am I? Let me tell you, this 45-year old nerd from
California had not much going for him... until I dis-
covered these amazing MIND CONTROL SECRETS, known only
to the most successful people in the world...
If nothing else, grab my free e-mail mini course now!

Blessed Be,
Richard Bauman"

I haven’t checked out the site yet, because I’m afraid of unleashing some virus onto our network. I’ll let you know what it is if I do. But isn’t this letter just hilarious? I like how he tells me how to use my hypnotic powers, “for fun, love or profit.” As if I might not think to use them for that purpose.

I keep thinking of Obi wan in Star Wars when he uses his Jedi mind trick and says to the guards, “move along.” And they say, “move along.” I know you know what I’m talking about.

Then he goes on to say what a nerd he was with “not much going for him,” until he discovered “MIND CONTROL SECRETS.” I like how he shouts that to me. I feel like he's assuming I'm a nerd with nothing going for him. Hmm...lucky guess.

And then he reminds me that these secrets are known only to the most successful in the world. Duh. As if there would be any unsuccessful mind-benders out there.

Now we come to the best part: his sign off. “Blessed be…” Wow. Very spiritual.

The worst thing about it all is that if you had mind control secrets, why would you share them with anyone? Even if you could sell your secrets, there would be no point. You could just make someone give you money. After I realized this, I figured that this email is probably a scam. But I’m still anxious to check out the site. So I guess the email did its job.

I’m really starting to enjoy this spam stuff. It’s like those terrible commercials that are fun to watch, just to see how bad they are. Or like reading Ziggy cartoons. I hate them, but love them because I hate them.

Question for the day: What would you do if you had mind control powers?

If I find enough of these emails, I may turn it into a series. Here’s the first one I found on robbing banks.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

"Delta Flight #44, You are now cleared to piss off."

I really don’t mind flying at all. In fact, I usually enjoy it. I’m never the guy who gets pulled aside for the “random” bag check. I don’t think I’ve ever missed a flight. And I can sleep anywhere, so I sleep through most flights. However, there were a few things that happened on my last trip that struck me as being utterly absurd. Or at least mildly annoying.

The first happened in Denver. As you know, we are no longer able to take liquids on our carry-on luggage. This is a huge problem for business travelers who are on the run and don’t have time to wait for checked-in luggage. It also really annoyed me, because we were forced to check in a bag just to bring a few toiletries. Okay, but here’s the absurd thing.

There was a girl about 14 years old who was eating a sub before the plane took off. She had a six inch sub and a small glass of water. The water was in a clear, see-through cup about the size of a Dixie cup. As she was boarding the plane, she was asked to throw the water away. After doing so, she was allowed to board the plane without anyone checking out the sub. That thing was big enough to hide a machete in. Granted, a 14 year old probably doesn’t have a knife hidden in her sub, but she also probably doesn’t have some kind of explosive in her cup of water either. Anyways, that just struck me as odd.

The next retarded thing happened in LAX. Delta flight #44. After boarding everyone onto the 757, the captain informed us that one of the lavatories was out of use. For everyone’s convenience, he suggested that anyone who needed to use the restroom should leave the plane immediately and use the restrooms in the terminal. This was absolutely ridiculous. For the next 30-40 minutes, people filed out of the plane and trickled into the strooms. By the time they got back, I had to take a huge leak. It was so stupid. This caused our flight to be about a half hour late, we barely made our connecting flight and our one check-in bag didn’t make it. I had to spend a day without my favorite sandals. And that’s really annoying.

Other than that, the flight was great. Oh and they make you pay for headphones now. That sucks.

Here’s my “if I were homeless” thought of the day: If I were homeless, I would go to the airport and steal the luggage that keeps going around the conveyor belt at baggage claim. There’s always two or three that nobody picks up.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

"I'm going to go back there Someday:" Nana's 90th and sunny Santa Barbara

Well, Nana turned 90 this past weekend. She’s my dad’s mom and lives in Santa Barbara. We went out there for her birthday and sort of a family reunion. Sucks that being with family is almost like being with strangers. But it was nice to get to know a few of them better.

Nana is going strong and seems to be ageless. She cracks me up. A funny little story about Nana: Back before I was dating my wife, she had called to talk to me while I was staying with my grandparents in SB. I wasn’t home, so Nana took a message for me. When I got home she said, “Some girl named Carl called for you.” It was my future wife Clara. Man, I have tons of stories about her, but anyways, she’s old and does funny things that old people do.

It was also nice to see my brother and his wife. I miss hanging with him and playing games and watching movies. We got to do some surfing, which is now one of my favorite things in the world. Even though I suck at it and have only done it twice. Everything was beautiful and fresh and clean. I miss the beach.

Which reminds me of something interesting I was thinking about while I was out there. As soon as we got off the plane, I started feeling how much I missed being out there. It was weird because I knew I liked it there, but I never really miss it. I think about things I like, but it’s not that feeling you get in your stomach when you really miss something. But I had that feeling while we were there. Almost the whole time. It’s weird because you would think I wouldn’t miss it until I left, but the opposite is the case. Now that I’m home, I don’t have that feeling anymore. I remember it and I can think of things I miss, but the feeling is gone. Why is that?

It’s the same way with old friends. You can think of good times from the past and know that you miss those times, but that real feeling of missing them doesn’t happen until you actually see them again and remember how much fun you have with them. Maybe it’s just me, but that seems to be the case. I get that feeling with summer camp too. Maybe it’s because when you visit a place that you miss, or friends, or whatever, you know it’s only temporary. The first time you were living it, you thought it might last forever. But now it’s just “visiting,” so you get all sentimental and don’t want it to end and stuff. Then you get that feeling of missing something. Then when you go home, you remember that feeling and realize that you miss it.

Anyways, that doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, but most feelings don’t make sense. So I guess that does make sense. So that’s my deep thought for the week. I’ll post later about the state of air travel in America. Boy was that fun.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

"Life in the Shadows" Goes Global

I was just thinking about how awesome the internet is today. Everyone all connected and stuff. And I started thinking how crazy it is that someone from China could read my page if they wanted. Or France. Or Zimbabwe. You get the point. But then I thought, "Wait a minute, they probably don't speak English in Zimbabwe. What if a Zimbabwean came across my blog and just passed on by because he couldn't read English? That would be a shame." Then I started thinking about how there must be tons of people like the Zimbabweans who don't speak English. I know, it's a crazy thought. So I decided to do something about it.

From now on, Life in the Shadows will be available in multiple languages. First of all, since I live in the inner-city, I don't want to leave out all of my friends and neighbors who may not speak proper english. From this point forward, they can read:

"Life in Tha Shadows"

Next, since I live in America and have to "press 1" everytime I actually want to hear someone speak English, I figured this blog should be able to be read by America's official language: Español. Spanish is the coolest, because in Spanish my name becomes Arturo. That's about the coolest name you can have in Spanish. Without further ado, I give you:

"Vida en las Sombras"

Next, because everyone loves Japanimation and karate, and because symbols are way sweeter than letters and numbers, I bring you:


Next, since Italy, Germany and France are pretty much the same country, I give you:

"Vita nelle ombre"

" Leben in den Schatten"

" La vie dans les ombres"

Lastly, since Portuguese is Spanish and no real American can tell the difference between Chinese and Japanese, and since Jesus probably spoke something similar, I give you:

"الحياه في ظلا"

If anyone can find a Redneck translator, let me know. I have a feeling I could get a lot more readers with that. Well, I'm off to Cali. Back late Sunday. Go Colts!

PS- I looked it up, and the official language of Zimbabwe is English. Oh well.

To translate your own page, click here.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Rob Huge Banks and Get Away With It? Count me in!

Before I get to the subject of today's post, I need to give a little background knowledge. I get annoyed at things fairly easily, but pride myself on being able to control these emotions and not let them take over my life. For example, we recently took a trip to the dunes (see it here) and I was annoyed at having sand all over me. I decided that instead of being irritated and uncomfortable, I would just convince myself that I liked the feeling of sand on my skin. Strangely enough, it worked.

So the past few days, weeks, months I've been getting a buttload of spam in my inbox. It's really not a big deal at all, but it can get fairly annoying. So I decided to find ways to actually look forward to getting spam. And it seems to be working. I've found some hilarious things that keep popping up and it's truly entertaining. I'm sure you've all got the email from Hajib Abijou in Africa who needs you to transport money and will give you millions for helping him do it. Well today I found a new email that I couldn't resist.

The subject line was "Bank Robbing," and it was from This caught my eye, so I opened up the message. The message contained phrases like, "Here is how I rob large banks" and "NOW ANYONE CAN ROB A BANK AND GET AWAY WITH IT!" and "Get my secret report here and get started immediately!" Each phrase was followed by a url that was similar to this:


I had visions of great master plans complete with blueprints and bank vault layouts. Then maybe taking out security guards with blowdarts and hypnotizing the witnesses. Of course I had to click on the link like a moron and see what this great plan was. Luckily it wasn't some porn site. It was actually a guy trying to sell a bank stealing scheme, but it had to do with mortgages and real estate. Needless to say, I was disappointed. But at least it provided some entertainment and a blog post instead of just annoying the crap out of me.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

The "Crocodile Hunter" Steve Irwin, Killed by a Stingray?

Well, if you haven't already heard, the Crocodile Hunter has died. He was killed by a stingray while filming in a coral reef. You can read the AP story here.

First off, I hope it's not disrespectful to discuss the death of a man on a blog post as if it's water cooler conversation. I definitely feel sorry for his friends and family and I'm only writing about it because it's on my mind right now. Hopefully people are refraining from making the all too easy jokes about the Crocodile Hunter being killed on the job. Although, I doubt it. Now for my thoughts.

I don't presume to know a thing about Steve Irwin other than what I've seen on his shows. So anything I say is based on that limited knowledge. But it seems to me that he would have preferred to go in this way, if a man can prefer to go in any way. It's kind of like in Forrest Gump when Lieutenant Dan wants to die on the battlefield. Or if I were an astronaut, I imagine I would probably want to go while I was on some mission in space. For some reason it seems a noble death. Dying while doing something extremely dangerous, but doing it because you're so passionate about it.

I can't imagine a man like Steve Irwin going slowly in a nursing home while his body just rusts away. At the same time, it seems ironic that the Crocodile Hunter was killed by a stingray. I'm not going to go into it, it just seems ironic.

More than anything, I admire the man for what he did. He was passionate about something and found a way to make a living out of it. He did what he loved and died doing it, which is much more than I can say. So the world says goodbye to a courageous man and I sit in a cube to write about him. Here's to hoping that his life may inspire others to do what they love. And as you discuss this with friends and co-workers, remember to do so with respect.

Animal Planet: The Crocodile Hunter
The Crocodile

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Art Across Indianapolis: Culture Exposed, or Indecent Exposure?

The day started out innocently enough: the wife and I decided to head downtown for all of the RibFest festivities. We found a good parking spot and headed toward the canal. It was a beautiful day and all was well with the world.

Downtown Indy is a beautiful place. Tons of things to do, the skyline is nice, things are relatively clean, museums abound and it really is just a great place to be. This picture was taken at the beginning of our adventure, before things got a little too "hairy."

Then we wandered down the canal, listening to some country rock that could be heard throughout downtown, and enjoying the scenery. We came across these mammoths that I'm sure you've seen if you live in Indy. I decided it would be fun to take a picture of me and the mammoth:

I then began to take notice of the many other sculptures around the city and decided to take some pictures of them as well. This one was entitled, "Job."

Nothing wrong with that statue. Not even worth blogging about really. Ah, but it's always brightest just before the dark. Things got a little weird with the next statue we saw.

Three marching turtles? Okay, maybe that's not too bad. Cute more than anything, but the next sculpture blew my mind. I must warn you ahead of time that this sculpture may not be suitable for anyone under the age of 18. Please refrain from viewing the rest of this post while at work, while your parents are watching (or your kids for that matter). If you live in Indy, I leave it up to you to find this sculpture. I was amazed.

No, they are not fighting. And yes, that little thing that looks like a stick is what you think it is. I couldn't believe it. Right here in downtown Indianapolis. I was shocked and could only laugh at the scene. There's only one sculpture that could top that one. And saying that it "topped" the previous sculpture is probably the wrong way to put it. Have you ever seen the moon rise in the middle of the day? If you haven't, you need to wear sunglasses. And by sunglasses I mean, close your eyes. This is your last warning. Oh, things got hairy indeed.

Frankly, I am appalled. So I'm left to wonder exactly who approved of these statues being placed where every man, woman and child can view them. They should get a stern talking to. Or a raise. I was also shocked to find how much junk is in my trunk. I'm sure I'll post about that later this week. It literally disgusted me.

In closing, I am offering a reward for the first person who can name where these statues are located. I'm not sure what the reward is yet, but that's mostly because I doubt anyone can find them all. If you can, I'll come up with something. Anyways, the next time you're wandering the streets of Indianapolis, keep your eyes open. You never know what you might find.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Trying out YouTube: AYDS Video


Check this video from the 80's out. It's about a diet supplement named AYDS. Talk about an unfortunate advertising campaign. Learn more about it here.