A Prize In Every Box

This is a place for the random musings and life experiences of one Fliven, who looks for life's fun little surprises, even when its in a giant box of stale, tasteless foodstuffs.

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Location: Sugar Hill, GA, United States

The details of my life remain shrouded in mystery.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Ancient and Decrepit

Getting older is a weird phenomenon.  You’re used to yourself getting older…may not even notice it most days.  But then you run into someone you haven’t seen in awhile or some bit of news happens and its just shocks you down to your socks.

For example, a girl you grew up with who is younger than you has a kid going to COLLEGE.  Which means you yourself are old enough to be a grandfather at this point.  Freakin' WEIRD.  You’ve been out of high school more than half your life.  You have white hairs on your head and in your beard.  That one’s not QUITE so weird, just unexpected for me, as my father and grandfather didn’t go grey until their 60’s.

You’re living through your 6th president.  (The wife is on her 7th!)  All your favorite shows and movies are having 25th or 30th anniversary editions.  You used to go DAYS without touching a telephone or computer.  A guy you grew up with who is ALSO younger than you is married and has 4 kids.  And you can recall this individual jumping out of trees into mud puddles and the like.  THAT is the image of him in your mind.  This new version just doesn’t jive.

Siblings are the worst.  My siblings are permanently, in my mind, no older than 15 or so.  So when you have only one sibling left in their TWENTIES, that’s a jolting thing.

Anyway.  That’s my spiel for today.  Also, Despicable Me 2 was hilarious.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Dweam Wivvin A Dweam

I find it disconcerting in a way that I have been filling the role of husband/homeowner/employee so well.  It seems like when you’re younger you are filled with dreams of destiny and greater things, and would not in a million years fit into the standard cookie cutter picture of adulthood.  And then you actually GET to the age where you were once like “when I’m X years old, I’m gonna be SO awesome” and find out that things didn’t happen as planned.  Of course, when your dream is to lead a sword-wielding company of knights into battle with the undead while driving a ‘69 Dodge Charger, these dreams may have been impractical from the start.  Still, its a pretty sweet dream.  RRRRRRRRR....(swing)(chop).

Which isn’t to say I don’t LIKE being a husband/homeowner/employee; I’m just grousing in a pre-midlife crisis kind of way.  There are just so many things I wanted to do by this age that I just haven’t even attempted.  I’m going to set myself a goal.  One bucket list item per year.  That shouldn’t be too terribly difficult.  Learn to speak Gaelic or go to Japan or SOMEthing.  As long as I’m working TOWARDS my personal achievements.

I know that in 2 years we’ll be out of debt (except for the mortgage payment, but that’s so low it won’t be a big deal).  THAT is something I’m looking forward to.  It’ll mean another 800+ bucks in our pocket each month.  Maybe for our 7 year anniversary we’ll do that trip to Ireland.  That’d be SWEET.  I’d love to do a train tour of the UK, actually...see some of Scotland, Wales, and more of England.

On another note, I haven’t been COMPLETELY boring and hum-drum the past few months/years.  The other day I went out and bought a handgun-style BB gun to shoot vultures with.  They keep landing on my roof and chimney, which can’t be good for either, so I grab my gun and go bust a cap.  It doesn’t really have the power to hurt them at all...just enough to scare them off.  Cause killing them is apparently illegal.  But if you can picture it, here’s this crazy 36-year-old with cracking joints and wild sticking up hair sneaking out of his house in a bathrobe and Batman boxer shorts at 6 a.m. armed with a BB handgun, shooting at giant birds on his roof while trying to avoid stepping in dog poops.  I’m hilarious, I really am.

Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Christmas at "home"…

So my parents have moved to Pennsylvania.  This will be the 3rd year I have not been in the house I grew up in for Christmas morning.

The first was when we went to my grandparents' house for the festivities one year…it was a good time, but just didn't feel right.

The second was when my wife's father had passed a month previous.  We felt it was important to be in town for her family and especially her mom on Christmas.

Now this.  No long hallway, no bare-limbed maples and poplars outside, no big picture window…I'm not sure if its going to feel properly Christmasey.

Still, I've already started compiling some idea lists, which I'm excited about.  I've got some good ideas.  Can't do much in the way of gag gifts this year, as my Secret Santa person I've only known for a year.  Makes it difficult.

I'm beat today.  Feel like I need about a week of sleep.  Its part the weather, and part not sleeping well, I think.

On the upside, we can eat at Bertucci's and tour the Herr's factory while we're up for Christmas.  Woot!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

When Beetles Fight These Battles…

Boar’s Head, the leader in deli meats, just released a new product. This product is their Caribbean-style Jerk Turkey. Seriously, turkeys are not indigenous to the Caribbean, so this is ludicrous to begin with. But the name struck me as funny. Jerk Turkey. And then I dove into the world of Seuss for some reason, pissing off the wife while doing so:

 If they dried it out, it would be Jerk Turkey Jerky.

 If the recipe was developed in Istanbul, it would be Turkish Jerk Turkey Jerky.

 If the guy who sold it to you was from that same place, he would be the Turkish Jerk Turkey Jerky Turk.

 If that guy was extremely rude, he’d be a Jerk Turkish Jerk Turkey Jerky Turk.

 If he enjoyed being rude, he’d consider it a Jerk Turkish Jerk Turkey Jerky Turk Perk.

 If this was not the norm, which it isn’t, the rest of us would consider it a Quirky Jerk Turkish Jerk Turkey Jerky Turk Perk.

 Life is glorious.

UPDATE: There is a product on the market I found that is caffeinated jerky.  It is called "Perky Turkey Jerky".  So now you can have a "Quirky Jerk Turkish PERKY Jerk Turkey Jerky Turk Perk.  That is so awesome…

Monday, June 25, 2012

What the…?!

Blogger.com has totally messed with my blog settings again! I hate it when they do that. There was nothing wrong with the OLD settings. Maybe its just ME who is getting old, possibly, as well. Speaking of getting older, I've noticed that every time I call the folks these days, someone's died. This is getting very depressing, and may be the reason I don't call the folks as often as I probably should. Since moving down 4 years ago, I've lost a grandfather, a great uncle, 3 great aunts, and the family dog. This bummed me out further when I realized that a few months ago the last living blood relative from my grandparents' generation was gone. Man. I still have a great aunt on my mom's side, and that's it for ANY relatives in my grandparents' generation. My parents are freaking me out a little, too. They're retired, moved to Lancaster, are living in an apartment while their house is being built, and just generally doing weird unexpected things. I really want to see if I can get their house phone number somehow, since that had been our house number for like, 60 years. Plus, you know HOW MANY THINGS I've got that phone number on? Zillions! Work is going ok here…a little slow at times, which makes me nervous, but big things might be in the works. Basically the CEO seems bound and determined to drive the company into the ground, and the bank is putting the brakes on. Seriously, our Maine branch has been losing money for like, TEN YEARS, and yet he's investing all the money that SHOULD be going to us for raises (which I haven't had in 4 years) or Christmas parties into their weak little business. I honestly don't know what they do up there all day, since they have more typesetters than we do, but produce about half the work. And WE'RE not busy about a third of the time. I'm looking forward to my mini-vacation next week though. I'm planning on finally finishing the painting of the back fence, and attempting to play Diablo 3. Right now I just finished Borderlands, and am doing some side quests in Skyrim, hoping to get some achievements. Oblivion was and is the ONLY game I've ever gotten all the achievements on. I'm missing like, 5 on Skyrim. Just saw an AJC ad posting for corgi puppies. MAN, I really want another one! Our dog is awesome, but it'd be fun to have another. Wouldn't take much convincing for the wife, except that we really can't afford it right now. All the vet bills and treatments and food and all that...not cool. One dog is more than enough, anyway.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Things You Should Mean

So I have had people lately giving off-hand apologies or thank yous at work or at restaurants or whatever, and I realized that something that is a real peeve of mine is when certain things are not MEANT when they're said. These are those things.

1. "Thank you". Its such a simple thing, to thank someone, but if you don't mean it, don't say it just to be polite. It waters down the meaning if you aren't truly thankful for the goods or service you have received. A heartfelt thank you is really powerful, and a weak one just cheapens the words.

2. "I promise…". For most of my life now, I have tried to use the phrases 'I'll do my best to' or 'I think I can' or 'I'm pretty sure' instead of 'I promise'. This is to avoid breaking my word in cases where I am not sure I may be able to keep it, or using it for things like taking out the trash or some other trivial thing rather than important uses. You SHOULD use it when you are making big, life-changing important decisions, such as wedding vows, quitting bad habits, and the like. If you say the words but rarely, they will have a real, almost jarring effect on you when you DO use them, and you're more likely to follow through.

3. "I'm sorry". I hear this spoken glibly SO often, and I am guilty of this as well, but saying this when you just bump into someone in the hallway, or you leave something out where someone trips over it a little, or say some joke that falls flat, and you say 'sorry', do you REALLY mean you're sorry? Do you mean that you deeply regret the actions or words that you yourself have done that have led to this, almost to the point of tears? Or if its a sympathetic I'm sorry, the things that have been done or said to the other party, etc? If you had ANY means possible, would you go back in time to change it? Does the thought of it happening again fill you with a heart-sinking horror? THAT is what it means to be sorry. Need to find another word or phrase for the little things, like 'my bad' or 'pardon me' or something.

4. "I love you". So many people so often confuse this with infatuation, lust, or some other feeling or emotion. To me, when you love someone, you're willing to live for them. Dying for someone is easy; any fool can go out and get themselves killed for a cause or a person. But dedicating your entire life, the ONLY lifetime you will ever have, to someone else's happiness and well-being with NOTHING expected in return? That's love. And its SO often abused or misused, that its meaning has become murky and often misunderstood.

Man, I should write a book. This stuff is gold and people need to hear it.

Thursday, April 05, 2012

Eight Years of Bloggery

So next month marks EIGHT years I've been blogging. I go back and read early entries and shake my head at how snarky and immature I was. I'm SO much better now, right? Ha ha, maybe not. I really need to go back and see which of the links I posted are working and which need deleted. Meh...not important though. And the Colombian travel post is still freakin' hilarious.