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, August 31, 2005

Oh, despair.com, your words sting and yet they are truth!

Neue Addictions

Today I've realized that everything I've been doing lately has feartured the Helvetica Neue Extended typeface. Why is this? Was it HNE's destiny to be used for these things? Or am I just addicted to the clean lines and friendly yet professional legibility? Truly, a question for the ages.

So the big question is, and I don't have to decide now, but I have been toying with the idea of going to the Maryland Rennaissance Festival "singles weekend". I went last year not as a single, and it didn't look that bad. Plus the prospective damsels would be "my people"...or at least one can hope so. I have two problems though...one, I can't decide now because I need more Nyx recovery time.

Hi, my name is Fliven, and I am a Nyx addict. (Hi, Fliven!) I have been Nyx-free for twenty days, now. (*clapping*) Some days are hard. Last week I had a few nights of waking up with a cold sweat and a severe heartache. This week has been better. Hopefully I can move on soon. (*sits down amidst nodding and looks of sympathy*)

The second problem is that I want to go to a show in Baltimore that evening, and I think the singles event will conflict with it. Something to think about. On the upside, the odds of wooing a damsel when you have long reddish brown hair and a kick-butt leather pirate coat are pretty good. Chicks dig the coat.

Today is going well! I've gotten lots accomplished, got to play with a Bushido wakizashi, and am doing some graphicky designing! Who could ask for more?

In the mood for a babka? Go here!


Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Webring Post #5

This week's topic, courtesy of Miss Maryment, is: If you could spend tomorrow doing anything (the "ideal day"), what would it be? and Compare/contrast this day with what your ideal day might have been 10 years ago.

Interesting and fun topic! Let's see, tomorrow. The ideal day. Umm...well, there's "reality" ideal day and "in my dreams" ideal day.

The "reality" ideal day would be to wake up, eat a delicious breakfast of bacon, eggs and buttered toast, and do the crossword. A hot shower with decent water pressure, and a new outfit to wear. Down to the Asian market to pick up some music, pockii, and talk to the fun bakery lady. Then its a leisurely trip past the local bookstore for a really good book, and downtown for an impromptu lunch with some friends. A lovely walk around town (afternoon constitutional), perhaps a chance meeting with a charming young woman whom I would go to dinner with. Journey back home in the evening, feeling tired but happy, making a brief stop at the spa for a massage. Starting a fire in the fireplace and falling asleep in the papasan.

The "in my dreams" day involves the lottery, a swimsuit model convention, zombie hordes, and a talking camel. And possibly a moose riding a bicycle, although he is notoriously sneaky about stuff like that.

As to how it would compare to a day 10 years ago...I'd be skipping school instead of work, wouldn't have to go to DC to have lunch with my friends, and would probably go on a hike in the woods instead of in town.

Comparing the in my dreams...it'd involve a suitcase of cash, the high school pom squad, goblin hordes, and ninja monkeys. And the wily moose on a bicycle.

For more entries on this topic, please use the links on the left-hand side of the page!

Additionally, since the entire world is going to see March of the Penguins, which I think looks dumb, here's a fun link to a game called Smack the Penguin. Enjoy!

Monday, August 29, 2005

It rolls down stairs...alone OR in pairs...

Whistling in the Dark...

Today has gone well! (Today being Friday...I may have to re-post this message)

Work was tolerable. Except for the fact that Scary Naked Twister Lady (still gives me the heebie-jeebies) has shared a new vice. Oh my yes. It seems in her impressionable youth, or at least so she tells us, she had a major crush on Burt Ward. This is the young man who played Robin on the original live-action Batman series. Holy Want To Make Me Blow Chunks, Batman! I believe her exact words were "I wanted to jump his bones." Beer-gutted scary Twister lady and girly nerd-man in green panties and mask in flagrante delicto...?

Words cannot express my horror.

After work, I came home and in a typical hedonistic Fliven weekend, I finished cleaning my living quarters! Clean lemony-fresh victory is mine! I think, in total, I disposed of seven trashbags of crap. Where on earth was I keeping this stuff?! It boggles the mind.

Then I watched Shanghai Knights, a deep and insightful film on the clash of Eastern/Western culture at the turn of the 20th Century. I am so suprised it didn't win Best Picture. And then I made some Labor Day plans with Poppy Girl and she told of this dance class she went to. I'm still not 100% sure, but PG assures me it is big fun. Men in skirts and Celtic-ish dancing. We shall see, if and when I can sucker some woman into agreeing to go with me.

I am also working on a new logo for my blog that should be amusing. And speaking of logos, I sent my logo designs for Madchen's super secret business venture (world domination and houseplants) to NYCRouge to fold into the website design, and things should begin to get groovin' on that front.

The Mountain Dew and Kit-Kat I had for dinner is starting to wear off, so I am going to bed.

This will be the front yard to my new house...

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Nothing, tra la la...

So today most of the office is gone...the two guys who share my space, and about half the people from the front part of the building are gone. I actually had to answer the phone this morning. Outrageous!

To pass the time, I've had a few trinkets of paperwork to take care of, and have spent most of the rest of the time getting new wallpapers for my phone. With the flat screen that I have, plus a picture phone, all I need is a really clear picture of something I want to add as wallpaper, and click! Instant cooly-cool wallpaper!

My apartment is half-cleaned. Yesterday I cleaned out the bedroom, the desk, and the kitchenette larder. Ended up with two trashbags of stuff to throw out. Today's challenge will be...the bathroom *dramatic reverb*.

Umm...that's about it. :) I'll leave you with a quote: "Entertain me, boring stooge!"

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

My slick new kitchen knife I'm getting...damascus steel...left handed grip...almost makes me wish I knew how to cook!

Things To Be Happy About

Yesterday was quite an emotional day. Work was dull and drudgery, but that's usual for work most days. Had a chat with my old ex-girlfriend Liza, which was both irritating and refreshing; as it was dealing with an annoying individual, but the fact that said individual is still interested somehow reinforced the fact that I am marketable relationshiply speaking. Which is nice considering my recent relationship drama.

I spent most of the evening yesterday rearranging and deep cleaning my living room, and I got to tell you, its pretty sweet looking now. However, there were several items of Nyx paraphernalia I had to deal with, which caused a bout of doubt as to the wisdom of the break-up and much missing of the person. Not good. And I didn't sleep well.

So! To allay this lingering misery, I am going to come up with some things to be happy about!

-Finding post-its with fun messages on them.
-New pair of jeans.
-Getting in shape for no reason whatsoever other than you want to.
-Abba on vinyl playing as you houseclean.
-Discovering new good things about yourself.
-Left-handed kitchen knives.
-Unexpectedly remembering where you've hidden some candy.
-Sharing the joy of friends with good news. (Yay, Behtia!)
-Designing wicked slick logos.
-New cell phone wallpaper.

Monday, August 22, 2005

So true! Conflict of successes. I should be writing books on this stuff.

Webring Post #4

In this, the fourth installment of the most widely varied webring posts ever, the topic will be My Definition of Success.

So I am going to define success as "what happens when the victories and accomplishments in life outnumber the losses." Example. Cooking a delicious bass without burning it is a victory. Cooking a delicious bass and burning it would be a loss. Cook a LOT of delicious bass without burning many, and you would be considered a "successful bass cooker". Works the same way with most things...business, driving, money, eating right, etc. My little formula does not always work. You could be a successful health nut, and still get lung cancer or a heart attack. Or have a successful relationship (bitterness...rising...) and have it ultimately not work out. Ascribe that to the unfairness of life, or conflicting interest of successes.

Another thing is that there is no ultimate success. You cannot be "a success". You can be successful, but there will always be more challenges to face and more bass to cook.

Also, Successful Bass Cooker would be a great name for a band.

That's pretty much all I've got on the subject. :)

Friday, August 19, 2005

Micro-RC goodness! There is no RC on EARTH that can top this!

For those in doubt...

If there are any citizens in the area who are in doubt as to whether we are south of the Mason-Dixon Line, I put forth the evidence that our local county fair is currently purveying deep-fried Twinkies. Enough said.

At last the weekend has arrived! I don't really have anything planned, either. Maybe I will rent a couple movies I've been meaning to see, but couldn't, because Nyx wasn't into them, such as Kung Fu Hustle and Team America.

Also have some good news on the micro RC front! There is a Japanese merchandise website that has a 2-inch model of the Batmobile which would be perfect for converting into an RC! I'll probably get it and also some candy. They have a super-caffeinated gum called Black-Black that's pretty good.

Umm....that's it for now I guess. But stay tuned for the next month or two. Big things are on the boil!

Japanese Stuff!

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Wooaaaahhhh! Inextricably odious, dude!

The Web Links Episode!

So today I realized that the last movie that Nyx and I saw together was Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey. That just sorta says it all, doesn't it? :) Heeeiiinous...

Today, in an effort to educate and prepare the masses, I have compiled a small selection of websites that will prepare the individual for a zombie infestation.

1. Shaolin Spade
This fun little weapon is probably the best anti-zombie hand weapon in the history of man. Either end can be used to fell a zombie, while the shaft keeps said zombie at a 4-5 foot range, as opposed to the 2-3 feet, or "lunging range" that they would have to be for a sword to be effective.

2. Titanium Crow-Bar
Eastern Europe (home of Vampires, Werewolves and Frankenstein) is credited with the development of the titanium crow-bar. 40% lighter than steel, 10x stronger than aluminum, this key tool can be used as a bludgeon or to pry open things.

3. Animal Netting
Tired of killing zombies? Save some for later! And the little scamps won't chew or tear through this stainless-steel hand-knit netting!

4. Shark Mesh
Available from any reputable dealer in diving supplies, 5mm pyrostretch titanium suits will provide significant protection from the teeth of those rascally zombies. Also available are gloves and booty slippers.

And that should keep you safe in the event of a Level 1 through Level 3 infestation. At Level 4, all bets are off, and your best bet is to run.

On the lighter side of things, I have found a pair of pot-smoking websites that will provide amusement for the masses:
1. Sean Baby
A site with diatribes and dissertations on the madness that surrounds us. Or something. The section on the Superfriends is hysterical.

2. Thighs Wide Shut
What I can only assume is a blog by the most brain-fried individual I've come across, but its got a quaint humor and lots of 80's references. Where else will you find adjoining pictures of Mischa Barton and Falcor from Neverending Story?

Monday, August 15, 2005

Yes, I'd like place an order for 25 gallons of Coppertone...yes...SPF 300...what do you MEAN it only goes up to 45?! Better make it 50 gallons then...I'll reapply.

Webring Post #3

Oooooh, two posts in one day! How did all you readers get so lucky?

First of all, let me explain something on my last post...the post title comes from the fact that Whitesnake did the song Here I Go Again, which is pertinent for a newly-single person. And the opening line was from Willy Wonka, and also a song by Oliver from back in the day. It has no bearing on any kind of situation, but there you have it.

Now! On to today's topic! And what is today's topic? Well, according to Miss NYCRouge, this week's topic is guilty pleasures. "Please confess a particular guilty pleasure that brings you some bit of shame." How saucy! How racy! I know you are all on the edge of your e-seats waiting for what mine will be!

I reviewed many of my more shall we say not-publicly-known aspects, and came up with a few ideas:

-Passive-agressive revenge on coworkers for real or imagined slights.
-Eating tons and tons of junk food because I know I won't gain weight and feeling smug about it.
-Knowing I know more than someone else about something and flaunting it.

Any of these is, for me, a guilty pleasure. But perhaps not quite tantalizing enough for you, the blog-reading public? You demand more? That's barbaric! Haven't I revealed enough to sate your appetite for the taboo?! You people...sometimes I wonder...

Very well, I will acquiesce and reveal a further guilty pleasure. My adoring reading fan(s) have twisted my arm. Deep down, I think going to a nude beach would be really fun. Yet I know my pale pale skin would get horribly sunburned in unmentionable ways, and I'm not sure that's a pain I wish to deal with...but I still think it'd be fun to go to one sometime. Maybe I feel a kinship with those who, like myself, have absolutely no tan lines; although for a different reason.

Oh dear. What must you all think of me now... :)

For more guilty pleasure blog posts, please visit the links on the left hand side of the page!

Don't let THIS...happen to you! Be prepared for zombies! Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks.

The Wisdom of Whitesnake

Good morning, starshine! The earth says "hello"!

So the news this week is that Nyx and I have broken up. It was unpleasant, to say the least. Started about two weeks ago when I got the "where is this relationship going?" talk, which led to subsequent tension and questioning of the pros and cons of continuing the relationship. And then last Thursday it came to the point of no return. She wanted commitment (i.e., a ring) and I was unable to acquiesce. She was unwilling to compromise, and thus we ended it. It is true that we dated for two years, as was the major basis for her argument, and that is a long time, but we had maybe maybe one date a week. And how well can you get to know someone that way? Furthermore, I am not in a place in my life where I am ready to support a wife and family, and she was not willing to wait.

So that's that. Its been a craptastic couple of weeks relationship-wise, and I will miss her terribly, but am fast on the mend! Let the womens beware! :)

Also important in today's news is the fact that the Earth is on the verge of zombie infestation. Go on, laugh. But its true. I am attaching a link to the article below. Make preparations now, people. Have your infestation plan ready.

Zombie Article

Monday, August 08, 2005

BAD modification. Security checkpoints must take HOURS.

Webring Post #2

This week's topic: Body Modification. And yes, I chose the topic. Its timely, its timeless, it has art and beauty, it has hideous freakishness, and yes, there can even be madcap shenanigans. Sounded like a good topic to me. My only other option was "name your favorite babka".

So being someone who has two tattoos, I am not completely against them, although my parents have been giving me grief because my siblings are following in my footsteps. Jean has a tattoo of some verse or poem in Arabic or something on her lower back, and William that cunning youngest brother, has his ear pierced and two tattoos as well! Now, I do have one problem. When getting something as permanent as a tattoo, it should meet some criterion.

One, does it have a specific meaning for you alone.
Two, take time to think about it. Even if you're 100% sure, get an opinion, wait a month, and see if you still feel the same way.
Three, research it. Be sure you're getting a reputable location, proper price, and know the tattoo etiquette (how much to tip, what to wear, what to bring, etc)

My dopey yet cunning brother got these tattoos, one is a celtic cross suspiciously close to what mine looks like, and a Bible verse in Arabic. Basically, he just copied mine and my sister's ideas. That's stupid. Never do that.

I'm not a piercing person. Don't mind other people having them, except for people who have so many in their lips that they jingle when they talk. That's a little distracting. But whatever. I think people should do whatever makes them happy in this regard. Its their body, its their responsibility. Society is just going to have to deal with it. I do think that if someone gets something risque' tattooed on them, they should keep it concealed in public, cause that's just common courtesy.

But basically, body modification is becoming less taboo, and I'm glad about that.

Rule #4: Never get a girl- or boy-friend's name tattooed on you...it'll jinx the relationship.
Rule #5: Never let NYCRouge research "Prince Albert". :)

Also, an important tip for all you potential modifiers out there...its addictive! The craving never goes away. Keep it in mind.

Friday, August 05, 2005

Where oh where shall I live? And will I arrive in a wobbly shoe or a large metal top hat?

Top 5-Where Its At...

Apparently, where its at for me is Knoxville, Tennessee. At least according to Find Your Spot that is. Never been there, so I can't ridicule it, and yet...I want to...

Second on the list was Charleston, South Carolina, which is a pretty neat place, although I've only been there once. I could handle it. Good choice, o Spot.

Third is Norfolk, Virginia. Norfolk is a hole. Bad Spot! No biscuit for you.

Fourth, Jacksonville, Florida. I can dig it. A bit warm, and a bit hurricainey, but I can take that in exchange for not having to pick ice off my driveway with an axe.

Fifth...Louisville, Kentucky. Let's see what Spot says about it: "This beautiful river city was home to Colonel Harland Sanders, founder of Kentucky Fried Chicken…" Spot is on crack if he thinks that's a reason I'd want to move there! Unless all the KFC is free.

In other news, its Friday, the week of doom is nearly over, life is looking up once more. There has been some progress on Phase I finally, but now the Phases need rewickering...I tell you, its one thing after another. All you can do is keep a fingernail grip sometimes. :)

Thursday, August 04, 2005

This would make a LOT more sense than the current terror system...click image to enlarge.


So what's been going on this week in Flivenville? Well. Not a whole lot except work. Worked 12 hours Monday, and 12 hours Wednesday. Tuesday and today will be spent recovering, and working half those hours. It also means that I can leave tomorrow at 1 guilt-free! Which is so very sweet.

Not much else to talk of...there's drama going on, but it'll get worked through one way or another, and I will share at the appropriate juncture. My health is ok, and I've got some cash in my pocket, so life can't be all bad. Plus I have banana bread for lunch! :)

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Behold, the majestic vulture in all his glory! Also, doesn't the guy on the left side of the bill look like the dude from Star Wars?

Webring Post #1

This is the first post in the newly-initiated webring blogging...here's the deal: every Monday night, a new topic will be sent to the group, and by the end of the day on Tuesday, an entry will be posted related to the topic.

So what is today's topic? Tourism In Colombia

At first I thought what, Columbia, Maryland?! Because why would anyone in their right mind go to Colombia the volatile South American country? Of course, when are Americans ever found to be in their right minds...

Here we go: Top Ten Reasons To Visit Colombia

10. Ridiculously colorful money. I kid you not, this stuff is blinding. I'm suprised its not visible from space. Plus their one-peso bill has a lovely rendition of a vulture. You go with what you have on hand, I suppose.

9. Wonderful new attractions such as The Rival Drug Syndicate Stuntshow Extravaganza (shows at noon, 2 pm, and 4 pm daily), Guerilla, Gorilla!: The Musical, and of course The Colombian River Adventure, fun and bacterial infections for the whole family!

8. "This hotel guerilla-free since 2002."

7. New customs revisions allow for the export of up to six Oompa-Loompas per person.

6. Your choice of seven or more sides to take in the 42-year war...or start your own! I am sure the 14th Regiment of Confederate Civil War Re-enactors would be a formidable team. Just don't get the SCA involved. They're a bunch of whiners.

5. Coffee costs less than $3.50 a cup.

4. Cocaine costs less than $3.50 a cup.

3. Finding Juan Valdez is the Colombian equivalent of Where's Waldo. If you can find this wily mustachioed man and his faithful coffee-bean laden donkey, your dinner will be free at the hotel.

2. "The government takes pride in statistics which show that murders have declined by 34 per cent and kidnappings by 56 per cent since 2002. According to international figures, that still leaves Colombia at the top of the world league for kidnappings and near the top for murders." Yeah! They're at the top of the World Leauge! Goooooo, COLOMBIA!

1. Because Brazil was getting uppity.

Be sure to check out the posts on this topic at the other sites in the webring, the links are on the left side of the page. :)

Monday, August 01, 2005

I think there should be a bumper sticker for this bike that says "Hell's Angels are goody-goody wimps". :)

Bring forth...the Manthei

Kevin Manthei writes the music for a bunch of really dark shows and video games...and he's got most of it available on his website. This morning I was in a really foul black mood and needed something to express it.

My weekend sucked. I don't want to talk about it.

I'm working 12 hours today. I don't want to talk about it.

On the upside (for there must always always be an upside somewhere) I look freakin' good today. Hair is perfect, complexion good, brand new burnt-orange shirt-and-tie combination that suits me to a T...oh yeah. :)

Today's fantastic news: a photo of the motorcycle from the new Ghost Rider movie starring Nicholas Cage was released. Oh my yes. Orange County Choppers wishes it was half this bad-ass. http://www.countingdown.com/movies/15658/multimedia/images?item_id=3699229
I'll also post it here.