Archive for December, 2006

Happiness is…..

Chainsaw crazed fathers:

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No more soul in my soles

In case you haven’t heard, the godfather of soul, Mr. James Brown died on Christmas day. It’s sad, but he was getting up there in his years. Also in other dying news our 38th presidant Mr. Presidant Gerald Ford died as well. He was much older than James Brown, but he didn’t really live the rock and roll lifestyle so that may have had something to do with it.

Many of the greats in music and other things are dying away. That’s why in the last few years I’ve made an effort to see these old legends in concert before they bite the dust. I’ve been fortunate enough to see B.B. King, Buddy Guy, John Lee Hooker, Clapton and Sir Paul. I almost saw Doc Watson this summer but it was on the same night as my 10-year reunion so I didn’t attend. (commence face-rubbing Phil)

If there were three four guitar greats that I wish I could go back in time and see they would be: Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Chet Atkins and Mike Bloomfield (man can this guy play..). One of the biggest names in guitar is still playing today even though he’s 91!! The man who invented the electric guitar, Les Paul. This guy was a shredder back in the day before they knew what shredding was. I’d love to see him as well, but he doesn’t play quite like he used to.

Here’s a taste from back when (go ahead click it, it’s only 26 seconds long)

If you liked that, take a look at this longer piece by him. Wow, watch the end.

Thank goodness for modern technology that can capture this stuff.

R.IP JB and GF.

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Traditionally in between

The problem with tradition is when it is broken or stops, you’re left wondering what to fill the void with. Traditions come to an end for all sorts of reasons: growing up, moving, change in belief system, getting married….all those things change the way things used to be. The readjustment can be difficult and confusing. I think this is where I am at. I’m not sure what to do with myself on days like today, when the parents are out of town and my sister has her own family to tend to. I’m in that in between stage of single, unmarried, not living at home. I guess this is where I should rely on friends and spend the holidays with them. Although I chose not to this year, I appreciate those friends who extended a welcoming hand to me.

I hope this doesn’t come across all whiney, it’s just new and confusing for me. The day wasn’t bad. I slept in till 10am (almost a new record for me!), shot some terrorists (in cyber land), crashed some expensive cars (in cyber land) and practiced a ton of guitar since I’m playing in a friend’s wedding in less then a month, and said friend refuses to tell me how long I am playing for, I practiced damn near everything (Dave, if you’re reading this….HINT HINT). I did end up seeing my sister at the end of the day, not to celebrate anything, but to draw up an ass-kicking workout routine for the new year. Exciting? Yes.

Even though I’m feeling a bit traditionless this year, I hope in the future I’ll form new ones with lovely people and chocolate pudding. And also, I hope everyone else had a good day, full of family, friends and love.

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Do your part….

Today is global orgasm day. Don’t look at me, I didn’t make it up. Go to the above link to see what I’m talking about, or better yet, watch this link to get a quick rundown. If the world has a ‘big O’ on the same day, things could get better. :) Even if you don’t believe in it, why not try? :P

….just sayin’

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Street Maze

I hate your streets Vancouver, Washington. Hate ‘em. Well, I guess your streets are lovely but the forefathers that designed them are not. I hate them instead. I’m sorry Vancouver, it’s just when I drive a hundred miles of your roadway, in the rain and all I see is numbered streets crossed with numbered streets I get a little cooky. I never thought it would be possible to be on the corner of 97th and 97th. That doesn’t make sense, if I was lost and needed rescuing I’m pretty sure I would die of massive blood loss before the paramedics found me. I thought I had regained my sanity when I saw lettered streets with actual names, but this was only a facade meant to confuse me. Many of your named streets turn into numbered streets! How was I supposed to know that White Pine Lane is another name for 38th ave? The gas attendant said to turn right on white pine so I didn’t think twice when I blew past 38th ave. I hate your road namers for that one. It seems impossible (and these are actual directions my dear readers) to head east on 76th, south on 94th/Covington (take your pic!), west on 63rd, and north on 76th……….wasn’t I just on heading east on 76th? Damnit.

Why can’t you be more like your bigger brother to the south, Portland? His streets are set up in a nice grid-like fashion. Streets heading North to South are numbered and East to West are named streets. The street numbers get consecutively larger as you travel away from the river that runs through the middle of Portland, thus rendering a ‘west side’ and a ‘east side’. So, NW10th tells me I’ll be going to the west side of the river. Simple stuff and!!! (this really is the kicker) if you are north of Burnside (the most major road running east to west) all the streets are alphabetical! Amazing stuff right? Plus Matt Groening used some of Portland’s street names for character names in The Simpsons and you know that what that means!? Neither do I, except Portland Streets are better than your streets, Vancouver.

Our company is changing it’s name so I’m having to drive around Vancouver to swap out the signs, simple enough, just not in Vancouver. I should consider myself lucky. I have a decent amount of direction, and a sense as to where North is. My sister on the other hand….not so much. I have fond memories of her not knowing how to get to the store that was located a mere three miles away from our house. In my early teens I put my life in my sister’s hands as I sat in the back of the car and watched her navigate my dad’s Caprice. She wasn’t overly scary when she actually drove, the only weird thing she did was to turn her whole body around to check her blind spot. I still don’t know if she realizes how many old people she ran over during those learning years. Her 10 second turnaround-blind-spot-check left many walkers in her wake.

I remember one particular time when we filled up the gas tank and Chantella* was at the wheel. I sat in the back, day dreaming about when I would be able to drive. In my afternoon gaze I saw the street that led to our house whiz by the window. I was about to mention something to the driver but I got the feeling I should just sit and wait it out. It wasn’t until we were 5 miles down the road that Chantella woke up from her own day dream, and realized she had no idea where we were. She turned to my dad in exasperation and said, “where are we?????”. He calmly looked at her and said, “I don’t know, you’re the one that’s driving.” And thus began a 30 minute trek for Chantella to find her way back to our house. I’ve thought about getting her a GPS for her car, that way she would never be lost. Well, almost never.

I went back to Vancouver this morning to finish swapping out signs that I did not finish yesterday. Y’know what’s even better then twisty numbered streets? Not popcorn, not a cheetah, you’re close with the ‘table tennis’ guess….give up? Black ice! I know huh? Silly fun. I was innocently listening to my Chipmunk Christmas CD when I turned off the main drag onto a side street and quickly found myself peregrinating perpendicularly down the avenue. Fortunately for me there were no other cars on the street and I was able to calmly straighten my car out and return to Alvin, Simon and Theodore before I reached the next 4-way stop.

My conclusion remains steady, I hate Vancouver’s streets.

*Names changed to protect the bad drivers.

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White Elephant

Today was our office christmas party. It was supposed to be an hour of seriousness and then a couple hours of fun. Most of it ended up being fun. It took place at the mexican restaurant Acapulco. It’s a decent place but I wasn’t really hungry for salsa and chips at 10:30 in the morning. Its times like this that I wish there was a way to save food in la la land and retrieve it in my hungry hours, like now. Wouldn’t that be the best? Then we would never have to turn down food b/c ‘we’re stuffed’ we could just take a plate and place it ’somewhere out there’, and when we’re famished we could demand a delicious plate of chimichangas, pico de gallo, margaritas and deep fried ice cream. I think I’ll invent this. Even without my invented dreamy food dimension, I still ate my fill because…….free food!

The meeting was good, and I got to see some of the other realtors that I haven’t met yet. We all got gift cards to Maci’s and there was a drawing for a huge basket of stuff that I almost won. The reason I know I *almost* won was b/c they meanily drew three cards and the first two names were considered 3rd and 2nd place. They’d call your name and say, “ohhh!! You almost won!”. I was 2nd place.

The real fun of the day was the white elephant exchange. I’ve never actually done a white elephant so I had to look it up on the Internets to make sure I was doing the right thing. Normally I wouldn’t be so cautious but years ago I was involved in how you say……’sectret santa’? Yes. That. That was my first secret santa and I thought secret santa meant you had to buy crap for the other person. That’s why they give you the name of the person to buy for, so you know what kind of crap to buy….right? Wrong, oh so wrong. I remember my ears started ringing when I saw each person open a beautiful, thoughtful gift from their secret santa. The ‘oh $*%&’ feeling was washing over me and as my recipient started to open her package I about had a fit from the inside out. In the end, she laughed heartily about it and I even got a kiss out of it! A+ for kisses!

You can imagine I was a little nervous about today, especially since my gift wasn’t the run of the mill, crap gift. I tried to put a little creativity into my crap gift and when I told Phil what I was doing he didn’t say, “that’s funny” or “that’s stupid” no, all he did was silently shake his head and say, “you’re weird, I hope you don’t get fired”. People started opening gifts and once again some of them were actual good gifts! CRAAAAP! Things like insulated coffee mugs, nuts, mink handcuffs, starbucks cards….y’know stuff people would actually want. Of course I opened this (see below, pirate not included) which is total crap to me and no one would trade with me so I’m stuck with it:

I think this ‘older’ lady was the one that gave it and so I hope it wasn’t a semi-serious gift on her part, yikes.

Nearly all the gifts were taken, but mine still sat on the table. Finally an older guy picked it up and tore into. I was a bit nervous , but he was a good sport about it and showed it to everyone and the place roared with laughter. Did you hear that Phil? Roared.

I took a box of chocolates and ate most of them, but had head-shaking Phil take pictures of me enjoying them. Then I made a mini slide show/flip book thing and attached it to the top of the box with a note at the end of the slideshow that read, “I hope you enjoy these chocolates as much as I did.”
Since I can’t give all of you my white elephant, I give you my slideshow.

In the meantime, does anyone have a good home for a ceramic birdhouse thingy? I might even think about throwing in the pirate if you take this sparkley, pink thing off my hands!

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Wedding invite question

So I have two different friends that are getting married in January within a week from eachother. I received both couple’s wedding invites on the same day…..exciting I know. The curious thing to me is that both RSVP postcards were in nearly the same format but I have never seen an RSVP postcard like this.

The top says, “Please RSVP by (date)” Underneath the date is an ‘m’ with a line next to it, like this:


Underneath the ‘m’ line is a place to mark whether you will gladly make it to the wedding or sadly miss the wedding. I wish there was a place to mark ‘angrily undecided’. All of this makes sense except for one thing. What the H are you supposed to put on the ‘m’ line? I’ve never seen that in all my glorious 29 years! Is this where you get to write your own caption? As long as you start with the letter ‘m’? I thought of a few that could go in there:

Marriage is fun!
Mom does my laundry.
Marcus rides his bike.
Moon is bright and pretty

Then I was wondering if I was supposed to use the ‘m’ as the start of an alliteration
Monogamous matrimony makes micah melt
Makeup matches Mark’s melon
Motorcars move merrily

In the end I didn’t put any of the above things on the line. I figured it had the letter ‘m’ because my name was supposed to go there, and since my name is “Micah” I put ‘Micah Rocks!’ on the line. Now I’m wondering if maybe I should’ve waited and asked the blogging land first what to do. Oh well. Does anyone know what goes on that line?

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Someone with too much time….

If you have too much time on your hands during this holiday season I have the perfect thing for you! First of all go to this link or this link but do not click this link!
(you need to have flash installed)
Follow the instructions on the screen, or just draw a downward line from the left side of the screen to the bottom right. Push the ‘play’ button. Pretty cool right? At my old job my coworker and I spent at least 5 hours on one day playing with our little sledder. Our boss was gone so we had a hayday, although we did get caught by a different boss lady and I told her it was something I was working on for the next email newsletter. :) I’m such a liar!

So, once you have played around with that a little bit and made some jumps for your guy and have seen that he’s not indestructable go ahead and watch the video below. There are nary enough words to describe the detail and amount of time it must’ve taken to put that scene together. Amazing!

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All in a day’s work

The alarm clock springs to life signaling me to the start of a new day. I stumble towards the bathroom and twist the knobs of the shower to summon the water from within. The pipes rattle and groan as cold water blasts through them, racing to be released upon my shivering body. Like a NASA technician during pre-launch, I spin and delicately adjust the shower dials to heat the water to precisely the correct temperature. HOT. Not scalding, but just a degree or two under. My nervous muscles loosen as the water droplets dance like little elves across my shoulders and chest. I grab the soap and began washing this area and that area until I get lost in the steam and haze and my sleepy brain can’t remember which areas I have already washed… I start from the top again.

After the shower I slip on my boxers and bring out the fixin’s for some of my famous eggs. My stomach is all clenched up with nerves so I decide on only two famous eggs. As I eat I read and read and read. Making sure I have everything in my head and nothing is spilling out. Most everything seems to be intact. I get dressed and brush my teeth. The water fills my cup and I notice that my hand is shaking. I look at myself in the mirror, square in the eyes and repeat, “you got this, you got this”. My stomach complains with flutters and fluxuations so I head to my bedroom. There I sit in my chair, eyes closed as still and silent as I can be. I breathe in and out and clear my head of any thoughts, nothing is around me. Slowly my heart and stomach settle down and I breathe relief.

I open my eyes and click the music folder on my PC. I listen to the only song that I know will make me feel like a warrior on this day. Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture. Especially the most famous part that everyone knows (which incidentally is only a small part of song, curious why that part is so famous?). Truly grandiose and awesome I stand up and flail my arms like I am directing my own symphony and kicking someone’s ass. The masterpiece finishes and a deep smile spreads across my face….I feel renewed! That is until I look up at the clock and realize I’m late! Ack! I knew that 18 minute masterpiece would bite me in the butt some day.

I rush to some office building I’ve never been to. Upon arrival and a few more deep breaths in the car, I make my way inside.

“Hi, you’re here to take the State and National Exam?”


“Name please.”

I receive instruction and in the blink of an eye I am ushered into a small room buzzing with computers and cameras mounted on the wall. I feel jumbled, distant. Under my breath I mumble ‘here we go’. After several hourly turns of the clock I emerge from the room a new man. I pump my fists and let out a ‘woooohooo’. “Congratulations” says the man as he hands me my scores. I am elated. I am now a licensed realtor in the state of Oregon (after I pay a bunch of money….of course).

I drive to the nearly hidden greek deli near the test center and treat myself to a humongous gyro. I’m feeling saucy and before me are a bunch of exotic looking desserts, one of the delectable eclairs finds itself beside my plate. Everything tastes incredible as I finally relax and enjoy the food, the blaring greek techno music and the waitress’ pure black eyebrows…..I’ve never seen eyebrows so black. I find myself slightly wishing all my friends and family could be with me celebrating, but the thought quickly fades in the comfort of my solitude. After so many hours of reading, studying and taking tests alone it’s nice to celebrate the victory alone. It’s a moment to reflect and say ‘wow….I actually did it’. The friends and family will be a welcome celebration in the following days and weeks.

Tonight I celebrated with Dave and Phil. Dave and I celebrated by playing with little cars and Phil and I celebrated with Spanish Coffee, Filet Mignon, Mashed Potatoes and Gears of War. A splendid night indeed.

Thanks to everyone for the well wishes and good thoughts. You all rock. Houses for everyone!

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In the U.S. makin’ bills

How do you make $130 in about an hour? Besides stripping. Besides prostitution….but close! I don’t really know how to do it consistently but I did it yesterday! Woot! If only I could re-create this model, I could do it all the time.

In other news:
Happy Birthday to my pop! I hope that iPod is still working and not smashed through the window.
This website is for you birthday dad (Make sure your speakers are on).

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