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.

My Photo
Location: Sugar Hill, GA, United States

The details of my life remain shrouded in mystery.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Fate of the Rebellion

So, and I know my nerdery is showing, I am really excited this week because Lego Star Wars II came out. This is a video game where all your usual Star Wars characters, Luke, Han, Chewie, etc., are little plastic lego men, and you fly around in little plastic lego ships. Sounds cheesy but its not. Its actually really fun. The first game covered episodes 1-3, so this one will most likely cover episodes 4-6. Little lego Yoda, people.

Also, just got back from a trip to visit Behtia, which was really great. We celebrated our 1-year anniversary in fine style. We cooked and ate a candlelit dinner together. Awww... It was nice. Then we watched old episodes of G.I. Joe. Because we're weird. And because knowing is half the battle. We also went hiking and hung out at the mall and ate out a lot and other generally coupley things. Also got to spend time with Ishy during "Asian-themed" day.

Today they had a wellness screening at work, and I went, which was good. I found out that my diastolic blood pressure is a little high, so I need to cut down on my sodium. But my cholestorol, which I was afraid would be high (and those of you who know my diet can agree) but in fact, was an enviable 180. Yay! And my body mass and BMI are perfectly normal. So my health is doing ok.

Also in the good news category, my program here at work gave me a nice $300 gift certificate to United Airlines in appreciation (or possibly guilt) for all the work I did for them this summer, working the mad weekend hours and long nights. So now I'm trying to think of a fun place to go. Especially since I have a week and a half off during Christmas. Trying to talk Behtia into hitting London for New Year's. So I could celebrate New Year's five hours early.

Today's Important Link: Left-Handed Store! For all the right stuff for lefties.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Childrens' Lit

In an effort to ensure that the next generation of youth has proper literature, I am putting forth a core list of key works for parents, and those who plan on being parents someday. One note, since this list is built mainly off of my own experiences, several of the works listed are out of print. Nothing makes you feel quite so old as when that happens. :)

Rikki-Tikki-Tavi by Rudyard Kipling
Button Soup by Walt Disney Productions
Blackboard Bear by Martha Alexander
Tikki Tikki Tembo by Arlene Mosel
I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly by Nadine Bernard Westcott
Tom Thumb by Richard Jesse Watson
Dinotopia by James Gurney
Morris Goes To School by Bernard Wiseman
The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams
Go Dog Go by Philip D. Eastman
Perfect the Pig by Susan Jeschke
The Five Chinese Brothers by Claire Huchet Bishop
The Country Bunny and the Little Gold Shoes by Du Bose Heyward
Bread and Jam For Francis by Russell Hoban
Cowboy Andy by Edna W. Chandler
Cowardly Clyde (and others by this author) by Bill Peet
Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak
The Stinky Cheese Man by Jon Scieszka
Stellaluna by Janell Cannon
Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs by Judith Barrett
The Ernie and Bert Book by Norman Stiles
Danny and the Dinosaur by Syd Hoff
Mr. Pine’s Purple House by Leonard Kessler
The Monster at the End of the Book by Jon Stone
Pat The Bunny by Edith Kunhardt Davies
The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg
The Snowman by Raymond Briggs
No Ducks In Our Bathtub by Martha G. Alexander
Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown
The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
Nothing Ever Happens On My Block by Ellen Raskin
Harry the Dirty Dog by Gene Zion
Are You My Mommy? by Carla Dijs
The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats
Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey
The Curious George Series by Margret A. Rey and H. A. Rey
The Clifford Series by Norman Bridwell
The Amelia Bedelia Series by Peggy Parish
Little Miss/Mr. Man Series by Roger Hargreaves
The Berenstain Bears Series by Stan and Jan Berenstain
Frog and Toad Series by Arnold Lobel
The Mercer Mayer (author) Series
Any Mother Goose story
Any book by Richard Scarry
Any book (or poem) by Shel Silverstein
All books by Dr. Seuss, but my personal recommendations are:
And To Think That I Saw It On Mulberry Street
The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins
The King’s Stilts
McElligot’s Pool
Scrambled Egg Super
The Lorax
The Butter Battle Book (my favorite!)

Today's blog brought to you by Fliven. "Working hard to build a better tomorrow."

Monday, September 11, 2006

The Gauntlet

As many of you know already, I am not the most social of persons. Understatement of the year, some of you are saying. And you'd be right. Which is why the fall is such a trying time for me. Allow me to explain why.

Every morning I turn off the alarm, which has doubtless interrupted a very important dream wherein I must paint the basement of my parents' house with live weasels or something, and then stumble around for a few moments while my brain gear shifts from "weasel/paint" mode to "shower/clothes/work" mode.

Not being a morning person, I am even less inclined to be sociable until around noon, when I've had a chance to settle into the day, the caffeine is kicking in, and I've come to terms with my life once more. But every morning, without fail, as I try to enter the metro station of my choice, I must run the Gauntlet.

The Gauntlet is comprised, most of the year, of newspaper distributors and the occassional special event flyer distributor. That's bad enough. I mean really, if I want a copy of the Express, I can take one off of the large, clearly marked, yellow-emblazoned stack right by the door. I don't need someone to move into my path, lean forward, shout "Express!" in my face and wave a paper in the air. The special event monkeys are both better and worse. They're there less often, but when they are there, and I show no interest in whatever event or product they are hawking, I get the look that seems to say "you are a bad person and will be responsible for the death and destruction of everything because you won't ". I really hate that look.

But the real fun starts in the fall, when the political monkeys begin campaigning. Just the other day there were at least twenty political monkeys between me and the escalator, all wanting to give me a flyer or button or tell me about Proposition Number X, or wanting to shake my hand. This is way too much sociability for me to handle at 7:30 in the morning.

The only brightside is when both Democrats and Republicans are there, and you can feel the political tension simmering just under the surface. The furtive glances and competitive shouting are funny, but when they begin competing for each person by leaping, leaping I say, out at a person and throwing flyers at them like ninja stars, that's where I draw the line.

So what is a quiet, polite person supposed to do? I do not know.

Today's fun: Costumes! Now is the time to be thinking about Halloween, or perhaps even Renaissance Faire costumes. This site has the best choices of anyplace I've found, at reasonable prices. I particularly like the V for Vendetta costume myself.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Good news everyone!

Behtia just passed her broker's test; so I am now dating the world's greatest (and cutest) stock broker! I'm dating a stock broker. A stock broker. That is so cool.

Just had to share that.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Bad Spam II

Today's fun and interesting spam comes from Bethie03 at yahoo. But that's not her real name, oh no! At sunset, mild-mannered Bethie03 becomes Gesac Invertazae , spammer elite! Please read:

Hello !
Thanks for you letter !

My name is Gesac Invertazae.
I am Support Grand Manager for answering you question #1688.

By GQ magazine Research we are in top20 of online apothekes on internet,
so you can find many good things for your health on our website.
Both for males and females. Just visit it.
We are licensed in India, State Kashimir, Medi-AQ77A and USA, State Minnesota, #MN2379.
And of course we ship to UK, we ship worldwidely.
Our prices are great. We accept credit cards as payment. Our privacy policy
is strictly oriented to provide maximum comfort for our customers.

Do not hestitate to contact us via our website if you have additional questions.

Best wishes,
Support Grand Manager Mr. Gesac Invertazae
HealthSuite Support Team

>Hello !
>Do you have antibiotics and other commonly knowns preparates ?
>Do you have licenses ?
>Do you ship to United Kingdoms ?
>What about privacy policy ?
>Mr. John Smith, Gloucester, UK
Now, my questions/conclusions are as follows:
1. What drug-induced haze prompted me to write this person as "John Smith" from Gloucester?
2. Why did I feel I needed antibiotics and/or preparates?
3. Having the word "grand" in your job title rules. For example: "Hello, I am a shoe salesman." Boring. "Hello, I am the Grand Shoe Sales Grand Man!" Much more hip. Also, that would make me a "grand designer". :)
4. I find it suspicious that they are in India and Minnesota. They probably use transfers as a threat to keep their workers in line. Tell the Indians that they'll be transferred to Minnesota if they don't stay in line, and vice versa. Can you really see a large, pale family of Scandanavian descent living comfortably in Kashimir? Having to chase monkeys off of their car?
5. How can you ship something "worldwidely"? Its like saying "worldwide-ish". Either its worldwide, or its not.

That's about all I've got going on...just working and counting the days until the 15th, when I get to see Behtia and celebrate our 1-year anniversary! It really doesn't feel like that long. Things are going well on that front, and we are both happy. Not with the being 600 miles apart thing, obviously, but other than that, all is good.

Oh! Yesterday I performed emergency bonsai triage...my bonsai tree Engelbert was starting to get brownish, so I watered it liberally, got rid of the stupid gravel, added fertilized potting soil, and am attempting to graft moss onto it, which looks so cool. If it stays alive, I will have the best tree ever.

Today's fun: Leeroy Jenkins! For those who are not techno-geeky, this is a movie clip of a bunch of online gamers playing World of Warcraft, and are meeting to discuss how to attack a really really difficult enemy. Leeroy is just sitting there, then goes nuts. Its hilarious.