Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Throwing Quarter Podcast Season 2 Ep. 4

[image credit to Natural Synthetic]

Finally! After how long? Well it has been a while and it feels great to be back and podcasting again.

This episode features music from a new Cleveland Band Vendetta Point. They brought with them, 3 exclusive tracks from their yet to be released EP The Scars. I am really excited about this band. They have a sweet sound, down to Earth musicians, and the ability to fuck your ear pussies.

They have a ton of great stuff and I hope you like it.

Dan came by with some Hollywood Spin.

We also bantered about the swine flu, giving birth, bad/good sex, and horses and humans having sex.

This episode is must listen, but I want to warn you, it is definitely NOT kid friendly, so you've been warned.

As always mobile users can get the podcast on the go with their BlackBerry or iPhone on Stitcher. You can also download this episode on iTunes too! Just search for Throwing Quarters in the podcast library.


Monday, October 26, 2009

20 Something Blogger Blog Swap

Hello! Today I am not here. I'm over at Creative Traction talking about Twitter and the habit that is. But Duane from Creative Traction is here, telling us about Social Media. So without further adieu. Btw, his blog is 100% more professional and organized than mine. I might be a little jealous

Building a Community Without Real Rules

foursquare just launched in Toronto a week and half ago and you can play the game if you live in the current 38 cities the game is offered in. With the new launch in Toronto, you already have questions of some people gaming the system. This post was inspired by my friend Malcolm from a tweet he did last Thursday:

You’ve people like Andre G who has 106 check-ins in only 10 days. And some of those check-ins are literally seconds apart. Then you have people who check-in from home, which include Ken S, Daniel P and Michel S. Sure foursquare has a help section but there are no formal rules to the game. Some would say you can’t check-in to a place where everyone doesn’t have the same opportunity to check-in as well. Having a somewhat level playing field is only fair. Others might not agree with that statement at all.

So that begs the questions, How does foursquare build a community without real rules? I think there are two co-operating forces that are helping foursquare do just this. The self-policing of the community and building a quality social network of your friends.

foursquare is really about seeing where your close friends are and less about adding everyone you know like on Linked In, Facebook or Twitter. I think foursquare has been able to build up the community because users self-police in the way we do with society and our social norms. I do notice the odd thread in the foursquare bug/help section mentioning a player who does try to game the system and this self-policing does seem to be working so far. It’s not perfect but it’s working.

At the same time we don’t have to add people we don’t want to play with. Sure we may never be the mayor of a location because someone wants to game the system. But if we get the connections going like they do in New York (Foursquare, a Social Network Site, Puts Users Face to Face – http://bit.ly/aPiSW), then none of that really matters at the end of the day because we found our own value in the mobile social network-cum-social game. That value will be different for everyone but end with you spending more time with the people you care about.


In the end I think foursquare can build this great community because many of the user care about the social network and are willing to self-police it for them. At the same time people are more careful about who they add and help create this value for themselves in the long fun.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Holidays, Retail, and why this time of year sucks!

Halloween is almost upon us. The trees are starting to shed their leaves, kids are getting the final touches on their Halloween costumes, and then there is me, ramping up for a busy Holiday shopping season in retail [or so we hope].

When most are happy with coming home and raking the leaves into the tree lawn for whatever municipality to come and pick up, there is me, lining my tree lawn with dog poop to teach those little brats a lesson for ruining my carefully racked leaves by jumping in them.

Look what retail has done to me. I'm jaded and bitter.

When Halloween is over I feel like, every year since 2006, I kiss my wife and child [now children] goodbye until New Years Day. 50 hour work weeks, going to work when it's dark outside and coming home when it's dark outside are all part of the hell of the holidays.

Most people are making plans to spend the holidays with their families out of town, I am busy trying to figure out how to get extra rest.
Not only do I have to manage my time with my family, but my situation is further complicated by Audrey's mom and her schedule. I play a balancing act between my work schedule, my wife's work schedule, and Audrey's family obligations on both sides, and the list goes on. The holidays are a subject of much anxiety for me every year, and I can feel that uneasy feeling coming back as November 1st approaches.

My wife likes to see her family on the holidays. Who wouldn't? But with her family 5 hours away, getting enough days off to make it to Thanksgiving is tough, let alone getting back to Ohio the next day so I can work is nearly impossible. We did it last year, and it was tough, but this year I have zero control. I am at the mercy if my manager.

This year, I had to tell my wife I didn't get the day before Thanksgiving off, thus squashing our plans unless I can convince a co-worker to switch with me, which will be nearly impossible because I think he got his days in the request book just minutes before me..

You don't know the hurt that causes. You have no idea what it feels like to tell the most amazing woman in the world sorry, but I can't get time off. It's like drowning a kitten. It puts my wife in a position to travel without me, causing endless guilt on her end for traveling to see her family while I spend my nights working.

It sucks that I have a job that prevents me from taking vacation days after November 1st-December 27th, but I'm not alone. There are millions of Americans who work retail and can't get off on the same days and I'm sure some are in the same boat.

So if you read my blog and I seem a bit grumpy, now you know.

Welcome to the holidays in retail, I hate them!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

10 years later

Back in 1999 I graduated high school. I know I know, I'm a baby.

Who seriously, who thought we would live to be out of high school for 10 years. Judging that I'm still alive, I consider my, albeit, short life, complete. My wife, children, and career are all bonus at this point.

So. Back in 1999 Ricky Martin was rocking the Top 40 radio station with his hit song 'Livin La Vida Loca' [we all thought it was awesome] and no one paid for it, because June 1 the initial release of Napster came out and on-line market places were just in their infancy.

10 years later, what changed? Nothing, and everything all at the same time.

The #1 today in America according to the Billboard Top 100 chart is Britney Spears with her staggering musical genious hit '3' [most of us probably never even like it or even heard of it]. File sharing programs like Napster are deemed illegal, but no one has figured out how to stop illegal file sharing, or illegal music downloads, and on-line market places are entirely the norm.

To say I wasn't excited about seeing my fellow classmates would be a drastic understatement. I was really really excited. I wanted to see how everyone was doing. I have heard horror stories about friends' 10 year class reunions where the entire night was a proverbial dick measuring contest. What do you do? I am a manager at a bank. Really? I won a Nobel Peace prize for doing nothing. Funny, I don't remember graduating with President Obama.

I digress.

When I got there I think we all walked into each others naked in the front of the classroom dreams. It was awkward. Do I shake hands? Do I hug people? What's the protocol? So I went with the usual handshake.

It didn't take long after I arrived to start downing alcohol like it was my job. I was 1 glass of Cabernet in when a good friend from back in the day walked in. I hardly recognized her. She went with the whole hug angle. She hugged me and my wife. I introduced Wifey as my wife, but Amanda didn't put it together. Amanda knew my wife and knew her well, but my wife has changed so much in the last 10 years, Amanda had no idea it was who she thought it was. It wasn't until an hour later when she came up and said, "Oh my god I know you" and then it was like a whole other class reunion.

Ok so that tangent is over.

About an hour in and a glass of liquid relaxer in, I saw classmates showing up. I went to the class reunion with the intention of letting everyone know that I worked in retail and I was going to keep the blog on the down low. Seriously, when we were in school the internet was just starting to really become a widespread phenomenon, I didn't know how they would react to me blogging, or even if they knew what it was. We are on the borderline of being a hip generation or being stuck in the past like our parents. Well that was smashed when a classmate greeted me with, "Oh my gawd, Adam, how are you? Congratulations on the baby, I read your blog, every. single. day."

Ok well I guess the cat was out of the bag. I was now, Adam, the guy who works retail and writes a blog that 1 person in the room knows about.

"Adam, yeah, I totally read you blog." said another classmate in response to the first. Ok maybe 2 people.

Great. Thanks for reading!

It wasn't until I had another drink and another classmate gives me a hug and says, "Adam, hi!" She reaches over me and gives my wife a hug, "You're baby is so cute, I read your blog all the time! I can't believe you Tweeted your wife's child birth." to my wife, "Did you want to smack him? I would have, but I was SO glued to Facebook that whole day. I would talk to [insert whomever she said] and go, Oh my God did you get Adam's last update?"

At this point was like, what the fuck? All these people read my blog and not a single one has commented? Comment the fucking blog people. Also, on the right side of this page there is a follow button. You can use your Google ID or Facebook, there are two widgets. Get on it. Click follow!

Sorry for the tangent.

So after everyone claimed to read my blog, we reminisced about marching band. We compared the current marching band to the power house and laser beam of sound that was my all brass marching band of years past. If you had to compare the band now to the band when I was in school, it's like drag racing a Model T Ford [now] to a Top Fuel Dragster [then]. There is no doubt the top fuel dragster will win, but you have to give the Model T style points. No. Fuck that. My top fuel dragster fucking owned the Model T by comparison.

It was a great time. The dick measuring contest never happened. Many of us had very similar culture shocks when we all moved away from home. We all realized that there was another race that lived with white people.

Where I grew up in Avon Lake, Ohio, there was not a whole lot of diversity. We could count the number of minority students on one hand. Two of the 5 that were in the school were in my class. Apparently they are both dentists now. But when I moved to St. Louis, or Lauren moved to Georgia, there were black people. What the fuck are black people?

Seriously. We were never exposed. The black community was an entire culture we were never exposed to. I am glad to say Avon Lake has grown and now there is not the same issues I faced, facing the students of Avon Lake now. Now that we are 10 years from Avon Lake, I think we have gotten over that culture shock and I think we are a little more open minded than our parents before us. We don't want our kids to experience that level of culture shock when they head out into the world.

A lot happened in 10 years, but I think there is just so much more to come. Yes, we are getting older and I think I didn't really start to think of myself as an adult until I saw all my old friends from high school. Instead of seeing naive 18 year olds of years past, I saw fellow 28-29 year olds trying to find their way in this crazy world, and I see some of them struggling with the same things I am. Career, family, and money. Not a single one of us would be considered financially stable. If they have a great job, they probably have massive student loan debt [maybe]. We are still a very young generation, but we have had a solid foundation. As loser-ish as we thought Avon Lake was, we didn't turn out half bad.

All in all I think the class of 1999 turned out a whole lot better than our teachers anticipated. Many of us have great families, although not a single one of their children is event remotely as adorable as my children, but I mean they aren't bad, just mine are better [let the dick measuring contest begin].

See you guys in another 10 years.

[by no means is this a representation of the entire Avon Lake High School Class of 1999, but this is the only group photo that I have. I didn't snap a whole lot of photos. The Graduates in this photo are (L-R) Chrissy Cifranic, Melissa Forest, Christine Allgood, Katey Knaupe, Sara Egan (just her left eye and half a smile are picutered) and Stacey Cifranic]

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Cleveland Blogger Prizes

So remember a certain contest that was run just over a month ago here on this blog?

Yeah, me to too. Well I announced a winner and it was buried in a blog about how awesome my child was, because this IS my blog and yes, I am the narcissist, so it's all about me me me.

So for a refresher, I was giving away a C.L.E. Clothing Co. t-shirt as a price for guessing the Addy's birth time without going over. So many of you chimed in, and 1 of you won.

Kasey Crabtree. A winner. She won the much coveted C.L.E. Clothing Co. t-shirt. As a bonus she was able to come over and meet the baby. Kasey, the clairvoyant she is, was able to guess to within 6 minutes of the correct time. 6 minutes. You know out of 1440 minutes in the day, she picked that particular minute. I couldn't believe someone could get it that close. When I was talking with her, she said, "I saw sixes, nines, threes, and so that's how I got it."

It was amazing and she won a great prize. Way to go Kasey, and for those of you on Twitter, go follow her, she has some great Tweets. She gives good Tweet, as LauraBlue would say.

So that being said, I have given out my first prize, and I look forward to hooking up with C.L.E. Clothing Co. on a future giveaway, but I have also won some stuff out there in Blog Land.

My very very very first prize comes from a very popular Cleveland Blogger Alexa over at Cleveland's a Plum. She was recently voted best blogger in Cleveland by the readers of Cleveland Magazine. She is so popular the C.L.E. Clothing Co. even made a shirt for her. She had a pow wow at her place to give these things away. The contest was genius and check it out so you can see how I won such a fracking awesome shirt.

Now that you are back, the Cleveland Food Scene has recently gotten a TON of attention. More specifically the Greenhouse Tavern. Named one of the 10 best restaurants in the country by Bon Apetite Magazine, and Chef/Owner Johnathon Sawyer was voted best Chef in Cleveland by Cleveland Scene, his wife Amelia runs a pretty fantastic blog as well as running their home lives. This couple is the dynamic duo. Amelia a.k.a Chef's Widow was selected by the Gap to be a Gap Brand Enthusiast and so they shipped her a ton of jeans and other giveaway things, along with a video camera and said, "Give our shit away".

Give it away she did. Check out how SHE gave it away, and how she got her readers [me] involved.

Well a few days ago I got my prize in the mail and off to the Gap I went. A coupon for free Jeans is amazing considering I can't afford much right now, so a coupon worth basically $55.00 is amazing, and the new Gap Jeans I got as a result are also amazing.

In closing I want to thank all of you who entered my contest, and I also want to thank Cleveland's a Plum and Chef's Widow for making me look good, and also did for free.
[Rocking Cleveland's a Plum and Chef's Widow Prizes]

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Consistently Inconsistent

Work has not gotten any easier this month. Bouncing back from extended time off has always been a challenge for me. Maybe it's a mental switch I can't seem to flip, I am not sure what it is, but it has been that way for 3 years.

So what I have done is start the process of reinvention. A reinvention of my sales approach. What I have been doing for 3 years has gotten me promoted into the management ranks. Now that I have stepped back into the role of a sales rep, I thought it would be like putting on a well worn suit. Comfortable. Well in the beginning, it was. I was popping. I was outselling my counter parts and it seemed that my work days were just a little easier now. I would go in, outsell everyone, and go home. Well what I didn't expect was that my counter parts would adapt as fast as they did. The fed off my energy and figured out what was making me successful. My speed and efficiency.

As I got more efficient, they got more efficient. As I sold more, they sold more. It took a store that had not hit their goals in anything in over 2 years, back into the goal hitting business. All of the success in the sales team was directly attributed to me. Then the month of May happened. I took a week off. I came back to a large goal to hit, and not many days to do it. I failed miserably.

When you don't hit a minimum, that is when managers cover their asses. Manager's, like most companies, are measured by the team they put on the sales floor. If the team can sell, then they look good. If they don't then they have to fill out a form that proves they did their job.

In my case, I did not hit a minimum requirement, so they pulled out the forms. They document conversations they had with you throughout the month, and the train rolls on. This is when they noticed that my attribute, my speed, is now a hindrance.

I was rushing through and speeding through transactions. I didn't believe them, and so I continued. Into June, I was rocking it again. July, I was there as well. August, well that's when the baby was coming, and my numbers took a nose dive. They pulled out their paperwork again, and told me, my speed was hindering me and to slow it down. They reached way back and quoted our training sessions from about a year ago.

September happened. Numbers were down. My manager came to me and said that she went to bat for me to try and stave off this write up because of a baby. She was shot down by the Regional Manager [or so I am told] and that is when it started to click.

It wasn't until I was called by the manager of another store I was trying to get promoted in to that it clicked with a resounding audible click. Like when you can hear the lock in the door reverberate in your brain. He wasn't even going to interview me and it was for 1 reason and 1 reason alone.

I am consistently inconsistent. I will have a great month, then a bad month, and my good and bad months are helping and hurting the team.

What I did was a shock to most people. I volunteered to a project that would help me revamp my sales presentation. It isn't that I was a bad at what I did, but like everything, it required me to adapt, and although I have adapted, it hasn't been fast enough. So I through caution to the wind and offered myself up.

To say that learning something new is uncomfortable is hardly doing what I am doing justice. This is like having your toenails ripped off with a pair of plyers.

So yesterday was my first 1 on 1 session with my trainer, and I guess you could say mentor, and it was nasty. There were a lot of stumbles along the way. There were also a lot of good things too.

After our 2 hour session on the sales floor, we came up with an action plan. We put together places to focus on. These aren't things I needed to change as far as scripting, but it needed to be an overwhelming behavior change. I need to change the way I think, act, and sell to be successful in this business and retail climate. I need to know what my company needs from me to be successful and I need to get out there and plug myself into their business model and make it happen.

This reinvention process is painful. Yesterday, I felt like a new hire. I felt lost. I felt overwhelmed. I felt good about my decision to make this change.

It isn't a diet, it's lifestyle change. I have to change and stick with it. Otherwise I won't get better.

Friday, October 9, 2009

And the winner is.....

I woke up this morning and headed off to the bathroom. I sat down at the toilet as I pulled up the New York Times [NYT] on my BlackBerry. I am doing my part by going green and reading the paper on my BlackBerry rather than filling my house with pointless newsprint.

The headline read: 'Obama Awarded Nobel Peace Prize'

My bowels evacuated just as I realized what the Nobel Peace Prize has become, a piece of shit.

I am a proud American who will stand behind his country, but what I don't understand is how they awarded the Nobel Prize to Obama only after 10 months in office. They stated they awarded the Prize to Obama for his, "...for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples."

What the hell does that mean? So, they gave him the Prize because he tried really hard? They are awarding his effort, but not the accomplishment? Did he go to the Middle East and give a speech in Cairo? Yes. Did he go overseas and talk to a bunch of people? Yes. But how can they say that his efforts were worthy of such a Prize? How can 10 months in office equate success in diplomacy. It is like he was just inducted into the Hall of Fame after only the 1st quarter of his first game of his rookie year.

So I went to the all knowing oracle and asked it a question. What is the mission of the Nobel Prize? How does one get a Nobel Prize? Wikipedia states the award shall be awarded "to the person who shall have done the most or best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses."

So has Obama done the "most or best work" for the fraternity between nations? How is it possible?

I think we, and the world, were quick to crucify Bush for his policies and even quicker to award Obama for his without their due vetting process.

We can go back and talk about Bush all we want, but the track that he was on was not all that bad.

Bush wanted to keep the tax cuts for the upper echelons of the income brackets because they are people who employ people. They are people who own businesses. The Democrats voted down that tax break in an effort to share the burden with the rest of the working class. Now the Democrats in Congress are talking about giving tax breaks to small businesses so they can hire more people. Well, if they never voted down the tax break in the first place, maybe we would be on our way to recovery. Way to think that one through Democrats!

Well 12 months later, the democrats have their chosen one in office and the economy is in the tank, still, even after all the money they threw at the problem. All this administration has accomplished was growing the bailouts [that Bush was critisized openly about by the Democratic Congress and fiscal irresponsibility] from $450 billion to $8.2 trillion.

Tell me, how do we save money by spending more money.

Seriously taking financial advice from a Democrat is just like taking investment advice from someone on welfare. I would rather take money advice from a rich Republican than a poor Democrat.

So let's put it together, Obama won a Nobel Prize for his efforts in diplomacy, but not his accomplishments. Obama's accomplishments have been to spend his way into even bigger bailouts to those who have put us into this whole economic disaster.

Obama is printing money which has devalued the dollar everywhere. Foreign countries' entire economies are tied to the value of our dollar, so what is Obama doing? He will kill those countries in the end.

Other notable Nobel Prize winners that didn't deserve it just as much as Obama doesn't now.

1. Jimmy Carter in 2002. Enough said.

2. Al Gore in 2007. Let's sit around and make shit up, then film it. He should give back his Oscar too.

3. Kofi Annan and the United Nations in 2001. They let a tyrant wipe his ass with their resolutions, and he got the prize for not enforcing the policies that are supposed to keep this whole world safe through international cooperation, but in the end, it's just another group that has lost it's purpose. BTW, there isn't even a reason as to why they awarded it to the U.N.

4. Yasser Arafat, Shimon Peres, Yitzhak Rabin for their efforts in to create peace in the Middle East in 1994. We see how well they succeeded. Again, awarding effort and not accomplishments.

5. Mikhail Gorbachev in 1990 for helping bring down the Cold War. Really? Didn't Regan have just as much to do with that as this guy? Wasn't he building it up until he realized that his war machine was just a rusted out Ford Pinto? Oh yeah, Regan was a Republican, they don't promote peace, they just ruin nations. Yeah I forgot. Regan got us out of a recession in the 80's and made us a proud world power again. I forgot, he destroys the world.

There are also notable snubs from the Nobel Prize commitee.

Where is Gandhi on that list? Pope John Paul? Corazon Aquino, the 11th president of the Philippines, and the first woman president elected in an country in Asia, and oh yeah, she re-drafted their Constitution to limit the sweeping powers of the president and restored a democracy in the Philippines. Oh yeah, she doesn't deserve it. Let's give it to Obama who tried really really hard, but as of yet, has accomplished nothing.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Infant Road Warrior!

So this past weekend was the annual October trip to Kentucky. This year, was a bit different. I had more than 2 days to visit, and we had an extra passenger with us. A little 3.5 week old named Addison. This was to be the first trip down to visit Wifey's side of the family. Great Grandmothers, Great Grandfathers, Cousins, Great Aunts, Grandmas, and Grandpas. All of them were anxiously awaiting her arrival in the Commonwealth.

We left Friday, just about 10am [or so]. Audrey couldn't go down with us this time because she had another commitment at her mom's house to see the Taylor Swift concert. She sat 3rd row. She wore a cowgirl hat. She looked cute. She was also getting over step throat, and turns out, she was still contagious too. She had that crazy mutant strep that didn't react to anti-biotics, so she went back and got better drugs, and it seemed to kick strep's ass just about the time she needed to go to the concert.

So back to the road trip.

By the time we got on the road for real, after feeding the baby in the parking lot of Panera Bread Company, we were fed, baby was fed, and the dog peed on everything in the grass near the parked car.

This little one didn't make a single sound until we were just getting into Cincinnati. She was fed, and back on the road. The 5 hour trip only took us about 6 hours. About 30 minutes per stop because of the baby eating and changing.

My hopes for this trip were that Jenn got a little break and let the extended family care for the baby a bit while she got to relax. I also wanted to see if we had time to hit the bourbon trail, because, if you read this blog with any consistency, or follow my twitter, you'll know that I am a huge fan of bourbon. I wanted to hit the Four Roses Distillery tour, but it would have to wait for another trip.

Within minutes of arriving at Jenn's Grandparents house, I was invited to go to the University of Louisville [U of L] football game. They were playing a rare Friday night game, and Jenn's GrandDad was not going to have a companion, as GrandMother wanted to stay with Jenn and the baby. So I tagged along with GrandDad to the game.

The U of L Stadium is a beautiful Stadium. The game was great until about the 3rd QTR. U of L imploded and ended up losing the game. I felt right at home. It felt like I was watching the Browns. As much as I hate to see them lose, there is a certain comfort in rooting for the under dog. Rarely do my teams win and I am ok with that.

So with the end of the game marked the pre-game of another college football game. Every year since Jenn and I started to date, we have gone to a University of Kentucky [UK] game when we make our trek down in October. The UK football is experience is far different than any other college game I have been a part of.

The game was to start at 12:21pm. The tailgating gear was packed by 8:30am. We were on the road to make the 90 minute drive from Louisville to Lexington by 9:20am. We had tents up and drinks flowing by 11:30am. This is the type of tailgating Kentucky does. By the time we got there the lot was nearly filled up, and we were the late comers. Not many people did a full tailgate when the game was as early as it was. They would eat a light lunch and then party after the game. We were in our seats in the West endzone by kickoff and we watched UK lose to Alabama. This is just another loss to me.

UK fans love their team, and they love their college, and the love their players. Despite the loss, the party was in full effect at the end of the game. By party I mean, drowning their sorrows in a bottle of bourbon. They lost to a highly ranked team, and they did a pretty good job fighting off the routing.

Jenn and Addison showed up to the after-gate to shwo off the baby. Yes, my 3.5 week old baby was out there with us, partying and being shown off. I couldn't have been happier. We even used her stroller as beer holders. It was an amazing time.

By the time the UK tailgate was packed up and we were headed home, it was close to 7:30pm. Yes, UK football is an all day event.

Sunday in Kentucky for me is usually a fight to find the Browns game on TV. I got lucky this weekend because the Browns played Cincinnati, which is just an hour away, so we got the game televised. I watched the Browns lose in 74 minutes rather than just the standard 60. It felt good to know we could have won the game, but like normal, they lost. Again, losing at this point feels natural, but with the shedding of the dead weight named Braylon Edwards, I think things might turn around for my Browns.

So the drive home Monday was met with tears. Jenn always hates leaving her family in Kentucky and usually she cries for sometime once we get on the road.

I hate seeing her like that, and the end of the trip is always met with the same bittersweet ending.

The ride home was great. Addy slept most of the way, and when she was up, she was not crying at all. She liked riding in the car. We didn't time the end of the trip well. We were off by about 10 minutes and Addy woke up about 10 minutes from home and was starving. It made for a pretty un-nerving 10 minutes, but I can't complain. Out of a combined 12 hours in the car, she only made noise for 10 minutes of it.

So I sit here after working for 13 hours yesterday, wondering if the Bourbon Trail is just a myth. Every time I go down to Kentucky, I want to hit a few distillery tours, but like Peter Pans shadow, it eludes me.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

It's not a midlife crisis [Crazy Neighbor Update]

My last post was NOT a midlife crisis. It was an honest self assessment of the goals I had in front of me, and the lack of success I had at executing the plans for these goals.

My goals were great, but my execution was not there. It wasn't me telling you that I am having a midlife crisis, it was me stating a fact. I cannot get past the glass ceiling I have been running into unless I get a 4 year degree. It wasn't saying I was a failure. It was me not accepting my current situation. It was me doing the opposite of saying, "Oh well, I had better get happy with where I can go." Many people would be happy with the salary I get paid. I am not. I want more. I want to do more.

So enough with old news. I have some juicy news.

Many many many many of you have asked over and over and over and over again about my crazy neighbor.

Well, I have some news.

After I wrote that post, with the help of my condo owners and the Police Department, I sent her a certified cease and desist order. It is basically a letter that states that she is to have ZERO contact with me or my family and if she continues to pound on our common wall, we will be forced to call the police, yet again.

So, once she has signed for this letter and she makes a peep and I call the police, they don't just go over there and talk to her, like they have been. They will go over there and arrest her, then commit her, and then I can rest easy.

So I am happy to say that she has remained about as quiet as a picture of a mouse. I mean she has been that quiet.

If she is leaving her house and I am leaving mine, she walks away and goes in the opposite direction. Everything has been great.

Well yesterday my wife got a call. It was the same, very helpful and very nice, condo association lady that we have been talking to. She was just letting Wifey know that she was not running for reelection for the board, and that she hopes all is well, but the last order of business was to announce to the member of the condo association of the arrival of Addison in the newsletter they send out.

During the conversation she got to talking with Wifey and she spilled a bit more beans than she wanted to.

I guess my neighbor has not curbed her habit of writing letters about the noises she is hearing. It seems as though she has accepted that the noises are not coming from me or the sound effect machine I have allegedly placed within the walls of her condo.

So the condo association lady got a call from [are you ready? Hope you can follow along] the daughter of the owner of the builder who built the condo complex. Yeah I know. What the fuck is she doing writing to her? Apparently she thinks that this woman will have a sympathetic ear so the Crazy Lady wrote her a letter.

She offered some new theories as to where the sound effect machine is coming from. Turns out, like I said before, she has accepted that it was not me. So she then went back to the builder, well at least his daughter [I am sure she is now calling the phone company to pull her listing OUT of the phonebook] of the builder. She said she is confident that the sounds are coming from outer space.

When the fuck did Tom Cruise and John Travolta come and visit her? Is she the mother of L. Ron Hubbard? My God!

I swear to God this shit only happens to me.