Monday, December 31, 2007

On the 11th day of Christmas

that my district gave to me:
  1. Not a very eventful day today. Went to Costco and bought paper towels and toilet paper. Weeeeee!
  2. Came home and watched some more SG1. Weeeeee!
  3. Going to go over to the neighbors house to cheer in the new year, and then will probably go to bed. Weeeeee!

One more day of this. Weeeeee!

Hope you're happy, Gibb.....

Sunday, December 30, 2007

On the 10th day of Christmas

that my district gave to me:
  1. Holy crap. Only 2 days left. I went out today and bought all the crap for Psychology class for helping us move the old computers. We're going to be watching "A Beautiful Mind" and I promised them I'd bring the treats. Tyler, who works at a movie theatre, already brought a full trash bag of left over popcorn. Not the freshest, but it's free and there is a lot of it.
  2. Watched them sledding down the hill at Sugarhouse park today. With my camera, of course. I discovered that for the most part, watching is pretty boring. Except for three things : 1) big groups going downhill together, 2) snowboarders (usually inexperienced ones who fall) and 3) jumps. Got some really good pictures of kids going over the jump, like the picture above.
  3. Bought Stargate SG1, seasons 6 & 7. Finished up on CSI season 7 and Roseanne season 8. Went down to get CSI season 6, since I have 1 through 5 & 7 but not 6, but they didn't have it. So I ordered it from Columbia House.

Ophir; circa '77

I think it was either my birthday that year, or the Christmas before, but I got a book on ghost towns in the 4-corners area. I'd always been facinated with ghost towns, ever since the Brady Bunch got stranded in that one on the way to the Grand Canyon, when a scruffy Thurston Howell III stole their car, trailer and locked them in the jail.
Anyway, some friends of mine and I decided to hop in the car and head out towards Tooele and find this town, Ophir, that was in the book and take some pictures there. As I remembered it, there were a couple houses still inhabited, but several structures that were abandoned. As you can see by the old black and white picture of the Town Hall, it wasn't in the best of shape. (Click on the picture to see it full sized). Seems that the building got a face lift in the last 30 years. It also grew a fire station on it's right side. I know it wasn't there in '77, you can tell by the old picture, but I can't remember if it was somewhere else and they just moved it, or if it's a fake. Either way, it's been fixed up and set up for tourists. There were also a lot more inhabited houses in the town, so restored, some brand new. Not really sure what all the people up there would be doing for a living, can't imagine there's that much tourist traffic way out there - but ya never know.
Another ghost town we found was Grafton, down in Southern Utah, by St. George and Zion's. Part of the movie "Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid" was filmed there, where he & the girl ride the bike down the street singing "Singing in the Rain". I just looked it up on the internet, and lo and behold, it too has had a facelift. The church was boarded up, the house looked abandoned, and it wasn't even brick. The only building that had been fixed up at all was the one you don't see in either picture, and that was only for the movie. You could tell, because the walls inside were only repaired up to about a foot from the ceiling, and outside onlt the two sides you saw from the street were repaired. Now it's all purdy and fixed up, like people are living there. What's the sense of a ghost town that looks like people are living there?

Saturday, December 29, 2007

On the 9th day of Christmas

that my district gave to me:
  1. I rode the bus up to the U and got one of my books for next semester, the Educational Research one. The other one either does not have a book, or the professor just hasn't gotten around to listing it. I'm afraid it's going to be choice #2.
  2. Brought payroll down to Free Wheeler. I tried to print the W2's, but they haven't released the upgrade for the 2007 W2 forms, so I'm just going to have to wait. Or I should say, they're going to have to wait.
  3. Went ot Staples and bought one of those plastic floor mats for rolling chairs. The wood floor is showing some wear from my computer chair, so I decided it would be a good idea to keep it from getting worse.

Yeah, getting a little boring. But we only have to put up with it for 3 more days........

Friday, December 28, 2007

On the 8th day of Christmas

that my district gave to me: (ok, it's getting old, or past that, but I started it and only have 4 more days to go, so I'm gonna finish it!)
  1. Got a call from Gibb today. She got a call from Lani. Seems that, since one of our professors was late posting our grades, Financial Aid has put a hold on us for next semester. Seems that we have to pass 67% of our classes to keep our financial aid, and since one of our two classes showed no grade, that put us at 50%. And despite being informed of the problem, Fincial Aid wo0n't run a check again, every student has to call and have a counselor check their folder. Yeah! Wouldn't have been too bad except that it seems more than just one professor was late. Something to do with the new online learning thing where they do grades throughout the sememster one place (where students can see their progress), but at the end of the term, then have to post them officially. So even though the conversation with the lady at Financail Aid took a whole 5 minutes, she already knew of the problem and just had to get my name and student ID#, because of all the calls I was on hold for 25 minutes.
  2. Headed out to Ophir, just to see how it's been doing since I last visited it in 1977. It's still there. Not really a ghost town anymore - bunch of brand new houses, fixed up the old town hall and made it look all spiffy. Also looks more like a tourist attraction than a ghost town. Just like they say - you never can go back. One thing I did notice while driving out there (I went the southern way, through Utah County and around the mountains that way). It may not seem like there are many untouched areas here along the Wasatch Front, same as coming from I-80 south to Tooele. But on that side of the Oquirrhs, south of Tooele, there's a whole lot of nothing. It was kind of nice, driving along the old Faust Road between SR 73 and SR 36, straight, flat and all alone. Got the car up to 100 MPH, no one in sight to say otherwise. And for about 20 miles they didn't even throw in a curve to slow me down. Oh, I did have to stop at the Pony Express marker halfway across the valley. But other than that nada. Then I get to the "town" of Faust, right where the road crosses the railroad. One old farmhouse, one newer double-wide looking home and a couple barns. So much for the double-mocha-latte I was going to get there.
  3. Went over to Dan & Rae's to play cards with them and the in-laws. Quiddler is a fun game, but they didn't like my "Quiddler on the Roof" joke. No sense of humor.

Happy Birthday Adele!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

On the 7th day of Christmas

that my district gave to me:
  1. Got my grades for my first semester of Grad school. I got an A- in Instructional Design and a B in Learning Theories. I got a 92% on the final in learning theories, the one that I felt I did really good in, which I'm happy about. What brought me down to a B was not engaging in the online discussions for the class (and I probably should have studied for the quizzes once or twice). But that's ok, I'm happy with the grades. Except that Gibb did just ever so slightly better in both classes. A and a B+, respectively. It could be because she, well, studied and even got online for the discussions more than the one time I did. That's ok, I don't begrudge her her grades. Not at all *%##&*.
  2. Watched some more of the 7th season of CSI
  3. Paid my bills for January. Since we get paid on the last school day of the month, I got my December paycheck (which pays the January bills) on the 20th. I've been sitting on an entire month's pay for the last week, just waiting for it to get close to the end of the month to pay my bills. Yeah, it usually makes only 23 cents difference in interest, but hey, that's 23 cents!
  4. Did some laundry.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

On the 6th day of Christmas

that my district gave to me:
(halfway through now)
  1. Didn't do a whole heck of a lot today. Woke up, watched some TV and then brought the Subaru in for it's 45,000 mile checkup. And only 6,000 miles late. But they gave it a once over and a clean bill of health. They did warn me that I'm going to need new tires on the front in a while.
  2. Did some major shopping at the Wal*Mart. Spent about $180 on food, 7th season of CSI, last good season of Roseanne and some other basic household necessities. Must have saved at least $20 over going to Smiths or Shopko. Not worth it for twice (or even quadruple) the savings. Wal*Martians (as Adele, who works in the pharmacy at one, calls them) are a special breed. It's something at the check-out lines. Nothing outrageously absurd until I got to the checkout. There I got bitched out by a guy who was at least 10 feet behind the line for cutting in on him, had a swarm of kids from the family behind me crowd my cart and scrutinize my purchases, and then as I was checking out, before the cashier could give me my receipt some other guy pushes his way to the checkout with "only 2 things". Next time I'll just go to Albertsons, it's closer too.
  3. Layed on the couch and started watching season 7 of CSI.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

On the 5th day of Christmas

that my district gave to me:
  1. Slept in late - again. Actually slept later than usual, didn't get up until about 9:45. Then I went out into the living room and lounged around there for a few hours.
  2. Went over to Gibb's mom's house for a couple hours. Ate a bunch of good food, (of course) and then sat around and chatted with the family.
  3. Went over to Alex's house, ate a bunch more good food, worked on a jigsaw puzzle, played Yatzee and did a A&M family photoshoot. Alex & Marijke have their kids and their families all sleep over Christmas Night at A&M's house, and this year they even bought everyone matching pjs. And they had me take a few pictures of everybody together (except Camden who had headed off to bed already), and then some of just the guys, then just the girls, and then more of the girls, and then the girls looking like a pj ad, then the girls jumping up in the air, then each of the girls individually, then the girls with Marijke in the middle of them. Yeah, I took a bunch of pictures of the girls, but we were having fun. Anyway, that was day #5.

Hope you all had a great Christmas too.......

Merry Christmas One & All

Monday, December 24, 2007

On the 4th day of Christmas

that my district gave to me:
  1. Lounged around the house until 3 pm.
  2. Ran the video for the 4:00 service at Good Shepherd.
  3. Went over to A&M's house to exchange presents eat Gnocchi and Pastichata, visit with the family and watch some TV. As always, had a great time with the family, but Amy & I set off to see who could out-blog each other regarding the family get together. She got a picture of me carrying my grand-niece's pink make-up kit, but I got all the Bubba-Claus pictures. Ahhh, who knows, she might even rate better than "Junior High" on the blogchter scale. If you want to see all my pictures, and the ones from Rachel's birthday party, click HERE.
  4. Had a debate with myself as to whether Utah drivers are a) insane, b) dumb as rocks, c) suicidal or d) homicidal. On the way to Alex's house, during the height of the storm, some moron in a Nissan decides that driving within a couple feet of my back bumper is going to get him where he is going faster. Then on the way home from Alex's some doofus in a Lexus SUV does the same thing. Having been rear-ended before, it makes me a little nervous being followed closely on slick, icy roads. I slowed down to 10 MPH, and with the Lexus even flipped on my hazards, and still they didn't get the hint. Are they too stupid to remember that snowy = slick = can't stop so fast? Do they not care? Do they want to die or kill someone? I dunno, but it sure sucks all the fun out of driving in those conditions.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

On the 3rd day of Christmas

that my district gave to me,

  1. Did laundry.
  2. Watched the "Berverly Hillbillies" and "Andy Griffeth Show" DVD's I got at the Granite High Christmas dinner. I discovered something weird, that I had noticed on another old TV show DVD before. For some reason the opening song for both shows was different, just some generic music. Makes me think that the rights to those songs are seperate from the rights for the shows themselves. Now, I would have thought that if you had the rights to produce the TV shows on DVD, that the shows theme son g would come along with it. For some reason this seems not to be true. Anybody know why?
  3. Lunch @ Sizzler with Adele and then we went to get the Wal-Mart before Christmas experience. No, we didn't buy anything, would have had to sit in line for half an hour or so. We just walked around and soaked up the ambiance.
  4. Went over to Dan & Rae's house and watched "Transformers". Good movie. Wish one of my cars would transform and drive itself. Heck, I'd even take Bumblebee after he transformed into the newer, concept Camaro.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

On the 2nd day of Christmas

that my district gave to me:
  1. I had my blog rated. Seems that I write on a Junior High level. Guess 13 years of doing my best to communicate with Junior High students has taken it's toll....The good news, on the other hand, is that the blog I do for grad school rated as "College - Post Graduate".
  2. Some of you may recognize this neighborhood. Some of you may not.
  3. I ordered a couple new storm doors for the front doors. Top of the line as far as weather resistance - double insulation, nice thick, sturdy frame. My front doors, although really nice, unique and authentic, are not the best at keeping out the cold. I thought about getting new front doors, but decided that it would detract from the look of the house. So, I decided to go for the next best thing. Of course they didn't have what I wanted in stock so I had to order them. And surprise, surprise, they won't be here until after the new year. I, of course, will put a picture on here when I get them installed.
  4. I watched half of the first season of Murphy Brown.
  5. I went (shiver down the spine) Christmas shopping. There's a reason I have a psychological block when it comes to this pastime. I was at K-Mart, and two people in front of me was a lady that argued about the price of EVERYTHING she was buying. According to her, nothing was marked correctly. And I sat in line watching the lines with twice as many people in them cruise past me. And that was after I spent 15 minutes in line at the Wal-Mart. That was just because of long lines, nobody was especially slow. The good thing about Wal-Mart is that I got a good amount of exercise. That place is HUGE, and you have to wander around aimlessly for a while to find anything. But that's part of the beauty. If you want to grab a couple of things quick and get out, go to the local 7-11 or Chevron. If you want to wander around finding things that you didn't even know you needed while picking up the things you knew you needed, then Wal-Mart is the place to go.

Friday, December 21, 2007

On the 1st day of Christmas

that my district gave to me:

Well, we have 12 days off from school for the "Non-denominational Winter Solstice", so as annoying as it may get, I'm going to create a 12 days of Christmas thing here. That means that I intend to post every day all the mundane things I do every one of the 12 days we're off from school. Ok, take that back. I won't be posting EVERYTHING. That would be, well, kinda gross. But maybe just the highlights. Like today.
  1. I actually had to go back to school to meet with the lady in charge of Ken Garff's Keys to Success program. Since I'm the "Key Contact" for Granite High School, I get to get things going as soon as we get back to school. And I get to keep track of everything. Yeah, fun! One more thing for me to do. That's one of the problems with a small school like ours - there's a lot fewer people to spread out all the responsibilities.
  2. Got the windows of the LTD tinted. Not the convertible, since the only time I ever roll them up is when I park it for the winter under the circus tent. For the 4 door. I got them tinted as dark as legal for the state of Utah, real dark on the back windows, not so much on the front doors. It's still got to settle, so it doesn't look perfect yet, but he said it should take about 5 days to completely dry. He also said that one of the other tinters wanted to know if I was interested in selling it. Yeah, right. Maybe when Satan has his own ski resort. I told him that I had just bought it, and was planning on keeping it for a while.
  3. Got a new tripod for the camera. The old one was a real cheapie. Check this link and you'll see what I mean. It came out looking like pretty cool, kind of like the beginning of King of the Hill, but wasn't intended to be.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Opening up a can

*** Hoping you have ***
*** a relaxing Christmas ***
So I send out a mass e-mail across the Granite School District, wishing everyone I work & worked with a relaxing break (sending out this picture that Lisa (my sister) sent me). I get back from Gibb (my Granite Park work-wife) a comment about having work-wife #1's birthday listed and not hers. So of course, now I have to add hers to the list.
(which, by the way : Happy Birthday Gibb!)
Now, I just need work wife #2, from Brockbank, to, um, remind me of her birthday, and then I can have all 3 on here. Would be really amusing if it happened to be in December too. Anyways, we'll see.
It's actually been a good week at school this week. Not only was it a 4 day week, but since the kids in my Web Page class helped haul old computers to the pallets to be crushed, and set up the new computers, we had a pizza party for them. I didn't want grease all over the computers, so we held it in what used to be the student lounge, Now it's where we have the dances and other such activities. The room's big enough to kick around a soccer ball, so of course they were. I told them to be careful, that if they broke anything the game would be over (can you see it coming?) The Drivers Ed class was right across the hall, and since they were watching a movie, 4 or 5 of them had made their way into the room my class was in - to play soccer because the pizza was gone by then. One wall is a big bank of windows, and around the top of the 12ft + high walls are a bank of fluorescent lights behind glass. Yeah, the windows were fine. About 10 minutes before class was over someone kicked the ball just right, it went wild, across the room and smashed into one of the lights. You could hear the CRACK of the sonic boom as the Drivers Ed kids headed back to their class. My class, on the other hand, just stood around with a look of doom on their faces. I told them to clean up the mess and that I'd take care of the rest. Told the head janitor that one of the lights in the student lounge had gotten broken and he just looks at me and asks "Hit it with the ball, huh?" Uh, yeah. Said he'd take care of it for me, and I thanked him profusely. Then at the end of the day yesterday the principal and her secretary came around to give each of the kids a brand new Granite High School hoodie. Seems some parent had anonymously donated enough money to buy every single student a new hoodie. Cool. We got them in my Psychology class, and one of the kids says, looking around at all the students in blue matching hoodies, "this is just to get us in uniforms, huh?". No, but observant, and funny.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007


Got this in the inter-office mail today. I won't say who sent it to me, but she is the most common poster on my blog other than me. Funny stuff. Thanks anonymous sender, and you have a great Christmas too. Or, should I say (as Rachel's e-mail so eloquently put it):

(By accepting this greeting, you are accepting these terms. This greeting is subject to clarification or withdrawal. It is freely transferable with no alteration to the original greeting. It implies no promise by the wisher to actually implement any of these wishes for her/himself or others, and is void where prohibited by law, and is revocable at the sole discretion of the wisher. This wish is warranted to perform as expected within the usual application of good tidings for a period of one year, or until the issuance of a subsequent holiday greeting, whichever comes first, and warranty is limited to replacement of this wish or issuance of a new wish at the sole discretion of the wisher).

Monday, December 17, 2007

Broke a milestone

We just broke the 400 days left of the Bush Administration marker. Yup, as of today, we have 399 days left to suffer through. Not that I don't enjoy the recession/depression looming around the corner. Or the several million dollars a DAY war that really isn't making us any safer, some would argue it's actually fostering anti-America sentiment in that area and worldwide. Who cares how many American soldiers die in Iraq, as long as Haliburton, and other Bush cronies, are no longer living on their meager incomes, and are now making obscene profits. But enough of my pro-Bush rhetoric.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Just click the link.

I promise it isn't obscene....

Click Me

Keepin' an eye out for me.

Little brothers. Danny sees this car at the K-Mart and, in classic Danny style, gets chatting with the owner. During the conversation he tells the guy that I'm looking for one, and even gives the guy my name and number, just in case he decides to sell it. In case you've missed it, my goal in life now is to collect all iterations of the late 60's-early 70's LTD's. I've got the convertible and now the 4 door hardtop, now all I neeed is a 4 door sedan, 2 door hardtop and station wagon. If I got this one, I'd be over halfway there. Click here.

Miss Nomer

A man is the president of the Salt Lake chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving. Kind of like making me President of the Daughters of the American Revolution or Paperback Writer president of The Hair Club for Men. Now there's nothing wrong with a man working to fight against drunk driving, or even a group of men and women fighting together, I just think the name should better reflect the composition of the group. So, that's why I'm proposing they change their name to better reflect this. Mothers and Men Against Drunk Driving. They could use any of the anacronyms listed above, I won't even expect to be paid for it (my favorite is the last one, I'd even pay them to use that one).

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Yee & ha!

Second one down, just 8 more classes to go. Took the final for Learning Theory tonight. Well, it was actually a paper where I had to combine Constructivist and Cognitive Information Processing theories in a lesson plan for teaching adults at a community college about the US Constitution. Tonight I had to turn in the paper, spend 10 minutes explaining it to the professor and two other class members, followed by a 5 minute Q&A period, then leave the room while the three evaluate the whole thing. I spanked it. I don't know for sure, he didn't give us our grades right then and there, but I feel pretty confident about it. No matter what, though, I'm done with my first semester of Grad School. Yeeha! Anyway, I've got 5 more days of teaching, and then no school at all until the new year. Suhwheeeet!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007


Came home today and checked the mail. In it was a nice little flyer hand addressed to me, with a return address of "East High 30th Reunion". Yeah, I knew it was coming. And truth be told, I am kind of looking forward to it. I'm pretty happy with where my life has led me, satisfied with where I'm at right now and where it looks like I'm headed. So, with no concerns about not living up to expectations, it'll be nice to get together and reminisce about the old days, catch up on where other people have been. And I'll have a whole new group that haven't heard my stories from the last 10 years over and over again.....

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Merry Christmas - and quit buying so much crap.

I got my first Christmas cards for the season today, 3 of them at once. Many of you may not know this, but as someone who was raised by two atheists, I didn't celebrate Christmas until Alex got married and his wife Marijke brought it into the family. So, despite having celebrated it at some level for the last 3 decades, I simply don't do Christmas well. I don't think I've ever sent out Christmas cards, I've probably had my own tree twice (only once in the 15 years I've been in this house) and I pretty much have to be assigned someone to buy gifts for or I just won't get any. So, I want to thank all you people who continue to send me Christmas cards year after year despite never getting one from me. I truly appreciate it. And even if you haven't sent me a card every year, I still wish ya a
!Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Not like it hasn't been said before.

I walked into the Counseling Center today, carefree, happy and feeling good about myself. Boom, ended with a thud. Jo, the secretary there, asks me "Have you ever looked into Garanimals?" Remember those? I think they were sold through J.C.Penny, and were designed to help kids coordinate their clothes. Shirts & pants would match if they both had a giraffe on their tag, bears with bears and lions with lions. Frankly, it was Monday morning, she's lucky I even got dressed. But, it did make me laugh.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Does it count as a boycott if you never went there anyways?

American society has come a long way from when I was an adolescent. Massachusetts wants to ban spanking your child, somewhere in the south they want to change Santa Clause's chant from Ho Ho Ho to Ha Ha Ha and Arctic Circle's advertising tells us we deserve a reward for doing something amazing - like showing up for work on time. Yeah, you've seen the ads, guy sneaks into work before 9, and then decided he deserves to reward himself with a burger for being on time. And even better - he's gonna sneak out of work early to get it. Niiiice. A while ago I was driving on I-215 on the east bench and some kids were throwing snowballs off the bridge at cars on the freeway. It reminded me of an incident 30 years ago when I was in high school. There was a bunch of kids on the front lawn, can't even remember what we were doing, but something was brewing. My mom came out and suggested everyone go home, preventative measures. One of the kids called my mom a bitch and my dad came running out, grabbed the kid by the ear, dragged him the 5 or 6 blocks to his house and presented him to his parent, simply stating "your kid called my wife a bitch", and left. The kid never called my mom a name again and that was the end of it. Flash forward to the new millenium. I thought about doing the same thing to these kids throwing snowballs but feared the result would be somewhat different. More likely than not, in my opinion dealing with parents lately, I would have met a completely different response than my dad did. First would have been "how dare you touch my kid" followed by stuff like how do you know it was him, my kid would never do that, what about the other kids you didn't catch and "lawsuit". Yup, lucky would have been running into the parent that simply asked "So?" and left it at that. No, not really. I'm sure that there are a lot of parents out there that would have reacted much like the parents my dad ran into. But they would never get the chance to deal with their kids because, like I was, we would be apprehensive of running into the all to common other kind of parent.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

One down, nine to go.....

Just finished the first of my 10 classes for the Master's degree. No final, just the final project. Turned it in, did a little presentation on it, seemed to go well, and we're done. Since we don't have a final in the class, we don't have class next week - horay! But it was kind of nice, we reflected on the semester and I realized I learned a lot about Instructional Design. But I'll save all that for my learnin' blog - the one this professor got me started on as a way of reflecting on things in the class - as opposed to a final paper. Suffice it to say it's over and in retrospect it was a good class. Nice professor, nice classmates (for the most part - you always have to have the know-it-all, I've done everything classmate. Which is good for a few good laughs.) Tomorrow I have my last Learning Theory class, and then next week it's the final. Ahhhh, more stress. I'm looking forward to it. Although it shouldn't be too bad - it's an open book test, he's giving us all different assignments for it tomorrow, I'll have a week to get it all together and present it to him orally in a 15 minute session next week. Never done a test this way, gonna be interesting. Anyway, gotta go to bed, didn't sleep well last night. Ciao for now.......

Comments from the older brother....

Referring to the vehicle sneaking behind the truck : The guy (or gal) still has snow on his/her windshield, maybe he/she was in too much of a hurry, eating, talking on the cell, texting or doing make up, or maybe he-she was looking for the new location of the Blue Boutique".
You know it is a bad day when you go into rob a bank and you get hit with a chair - This actually happened here in SLC. Some guy walked into a bank at 14th east and 2100 south and pulled a knife on a teller. There happens to be offices on the balcony above the tellers windows. Someone on the balcony hit the alarm and then threw a chair on the robber. The robber was knocked to the ground, "yelled something" (Probably "that hurt M%$£"$ F$%*&$) and ran out of the bank. It used to be so easy - you pull a weapon and walk out with the cash..
.Just when you think you heard the stupidist thing a criminal could do - this didn't happen in Utah. A guy steals a passport printing machine, gets it home and can't operate it. He locates the name of the manufacturer and calls their customer service for help. He leaves his name and phone number (his real name and phone number). They did send someone right over, the cops. It used to be so easy - you steal something and you can use it right away.
Alex Rossi

Sunday, December 02, 2007


Accoding to my digital thermometer, last night's low at my house was 20 degrees. It's warmed up to a balmy 30 by now, but I still think I'll drive something other than the convertible.
If there's a five ton garbage truck spinning its wheels trying to get up a hill, with little more than a car width beteen it's rear end and the KFC, would you try to squeeze behind it or figure another way of getting where you are going? Well, then you just have no sense of adventure.
Have a great day and stay warm........

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Southern Utah - anything below Promontory Point.

I'm petitioning the Federal Government to pass NSLB - No Storm Left Behind. I think it's time to start holding weather forecasters accountable for their incorrect predictions. Even as close as last night on the 10:00 news they said that this storm was going stick strictly to Southern Utah. Yeah, so why did I just spend an hour shoveling 3" of snow? Dunno. Maybe we should make them shovel my driveway whenever they predict wrong. I mean, with all of them shoveling at once, it shouldn't take more than 15 minutes.
Actually, I'm glad they were wrong, I was kind of depressed that the whole thing was going to miss us. Yes, I hate winter, but if it's going to be winter, it might as well snow. I mean, if it ain't gonna snow, I might as well trade in my Subaru for a Cavalier. And snow is pretty.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Birth in a shelter....

Spelunking around in the underground caverns of Granite High we stumbled upon the old bomb shelter. Still had 45 year old first aid kits, toilet paper, water and biscuits. Oh, and the "Family Guide to Emergency Health Care" published by the Department of Defense, Office of Civil Defense, December 1961.
  • Chapter 1 : Facing the Fallout Threat. (includes Shelter living, pg 5. "..shelter occupancy tests have shown that typical Americans of both sexes and widely divergent ages can live under shelter conditions for periods of up to two weeks without much stress." Uh, nice.)
  • Chapter 2 : Caring for the Sick. (includes pg 9-unconciousness, pg 10-convulsions, pg 13-diarrhea and pg 21-treatment of radiation sickness.)
  • Chapter 3 : Caring for the injured. (pg 26-excessive bleeding, pg 29-sucking wounds in the chest.)
  • Chapter 4 : Special Problems in Caring for the Seriously Ill or Injured in a Shelter. (pg 41-When death occurs.)
  • Chapter 5 : Birth in a shelter.
  • Chapter 6 : Emergency Supplies and Sanitation.

Pretty light reading - I think tomorrow I'll wrap myself up in a warm blanket, with a big cup of coffee and go through the whole thing. And I can't wait until the morning when I get to try out one of my rolls of 45 year old Service Quality Toilet Tissue. Hey, anyone else see a "kill two birds with one stone" opportunity here?

Thursday, November 29, 2007


Today was phobia day in Psychology. I took a list of phobias from the internet ( and read them off to the class for them to guess. Got some really interesting responses. I chose to skip a few of them, (Eurotophobia, Medorthophobia, Oneirogmophobia, Paraphobia, Parthenophobia, Phallophobia and other fun ones), because I really wanted to avoid the possible responses. It was a lot of fun. We got into some interesting discussions about the origins of words, and what to look for. Several students noticed the piece "hex" three times in the title here, and correctly guessed it was the fear of the number 666. Oh, and one of my favorites, for all you Jr. & High School teachers out there : Ephebiphobia- Fear of teenagers. I told them I suffered from that, and a couple asked "So, why are you a teacher?" Well, uh, maybe I was just kidding? Freshmen!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Happy Birthday Rachel!


Sunday, November 25, 2007

Yes, Virginia, seagulls do yawn.......

and other random scenery pictures.

And if you really want to be confused about what I'm doing in college,

The pond at Sugarhouse park was frozen over. Nothing funnier than seeing a bunch of seagulls and ducks try to land on ice. Saw a couple good faceplants, but didn't get any good pictures of it happening. Bummer.

421 days to go.......

I just signed up for next semester. I'm taking Introduction to Research Design and Integration of Educational Technology. Personally, I think I'm going to enjoy the technology one more that the research one, I love working with the technology in my classroom, and I don't see myself doing a lot of research. But you never know, since I do a lot of technology I could see myself getting bored with it, and maybe I'll really like research - could lead my career in a previously unseen direction. It's happened before. I never thought I'd be the Tech Specialist for a small high school, teaching both math and psychology. I thought I'd live out my career teaching math in a junior high setting. Point being you never know where things are going to lead you, you gotta be ready to try and sometimes, like me, you end up somewhere you love being. (is this seminar on cassette or DVD?).
Anyway, we're almost done with the fiorst semester. We have one final project to put together for the Instructional Design class, and on Thursday we will be assigned our final subject in Learning Theory. FINALS WEEK! Man I miss those days. (uh, no, not really). Just don't expect to see much here for the next couple weeks.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Strange things are afoot at the Circle K

Ok, it's really the Chevron, but I just had to use that quote.

I found out today that there's gonna be a few changes around the Chevron. About a year ago the owner decided that he needed to let his offspring become more involved in the business, and for some reason they earmarked Mindy for destruction. (Mindy manages the one I work at). While Mindy was on maternity leave earlier this year, the son took over our store and nearly drove all of us employees out. He's 22 and knows all, and instead of sitting back and learning from the well oiled machine that Mindy had organized, he decided to mark his territory. Fortunately we knew that this was only temporary, and lo and behold, when Mindy came back everything went back to normal. As far as we could see at least. Not so much for her. The offspring continue to nitpick and go out of their way to make things hard for her, enough that when Mindy got an offer to become the General Manager for another company with 9 stores, she decided to go. So Mindy gave her 2 weeks notice this week, and will be moving back up to Idaho in december. Amy, the assistant manager gave her notice too. So did the graveyard crew, at least half the swing shift crew and the entire day crew. We all know what life there would be like with the offspring running it, and we all think unemployment is better. I'd pretty much quit anyway, I've only been helping out for the last week because they had 2 full time people quit at the same time. I'm gonna help out for these last two weeks and then I'm done, finito, kaput. It'll be weird going in there for gas and not recognizing anyone that I'm willing to talk to, but what the heck. Was that way before I worked there. Anyways, stay tuned here for updates on the antics of "The Chillin' takes over the Chevron"........

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Tryptophan uber alles.

So, how was your Thanksgiving? Mine was great. Slept in until almost 11, layed around the house for a couple of hours and then went over to A&M's house. Ate my full share of the 5000 calories that they newspaper said was the average American intake for the day, saw most of the family, played poker, watched Uncle Buck & Elf and then came home. An excellent day. Thanks Alex & Marijke for the feast! Hope the rest of you had as good a day as I did. And now I'm going to go to bed because I have a study session right around noon tomorrow, the feedback on the second phase of our project said "talk to me ASAP" no less than 3 times. Yikes! It's not as bad as it sounds (we got 80% as it is) but he's still going to let us revise it and improve our grade. Anyhoo, gonna run.

Sit back and take a breath, finally......

Long time no write. Been a little bit busy with everything going on. But I've got a few days without anything going on, other than getting together with family and eating a lot. That and Sir Duke is in town again - or will be tonight.

I know it is ironic that I have more time to do my blogging when I'm here in class than any other time, but there's a lot of discussing going on that I can keep in the periphery. We just got told the story about the Greek god Thueth and King Thamus. Shouldn't it be Thueth and Thamuth? Thath the way I thee it. The story isn't that great, I just thought the names sounded funny, so I had to post them here. But for the record, the god Thueth created writing and was so excited about it that he took it to King Thamus. King Thamus, on the other hand was not so excited, he felt that transmitting knowledge through writing would detract from the actual learning, that the focus would be on the writing and would result in unauthentic learning. The comparison is with technology today. Think about it.
Well, back home and it's Thanksgiving day. So, I hope you're all having a :
Happy Thanksgiving!
I'll be heading out to A&M's house in a couple of hours for dinner and general family fun and the mandatory viewwing of "Uncle Buck".
I watched "Almost Famous" a couple of days ago, wanted to see if my car really was in the movies. It was. For about 3 seconds during the credits, partially hidden behind a Mercedes. But it was definitly my car, and kind of cool to see it in a movie. I watched the whole movie looking to see if I could see more of the car, but I didn't. I kind of got into the movie, so if it was in the background again, I could have missed it, but it certainly didn't have a huge part in the movie. Now I'm borrowing "Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas" which will, hopefully, be a little less anticlimatic.
Sorry this post has been kind of choppy and disjointed - I've been adding to is over a couple days. I've also added some photo galleries, if you want to check them out.
Well, have a great Thanksgiving and prepare for the Christmas Advertising Onslaught......

Monday, November 19, 2007

Happy Birthday Paige

Sorry it's late, but I hope you had a great birthday....

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Trax Hell.

Getting downtown this afternoon was an experience. First of all we were meeting at Trax later than usual, and I lost track of time and realized I was supposed to be on my way about 5 minutes before the train was supposed to arrive. So I haul butt out of the school, figuring if everything goes right I might actually make it there in time. Everything went perfect, it took me about 3 minutes to get to State Street, but then I got stuck behind Slow Poke Sammy. Took 3 minutes from 5th E to State (4 blocks) then 7 minutes from State to West Temple (2 blocks). Not only was his top speed somewhere between molasses and cooling lava, but he had a serious fear of crossing traffic - even when there wasn't any. So, I missed the train. Which gave me the opportunity to meet The Most Disgusting Couple in the World. Well, not meet them, but kind of experience them. I'll skip the physical aspects, you can see them in the picture. What really struck me was them standing right under the No Smoking sign, cigarettes in hand, smoking the entire time. That only borders on disgusting, more inconsiderate, what pushed it over the line was the constant 'farmer blowing' all over the sidewalk. (Farmer Blow : verb. Middle English. To plug one notstril and clear the other randomly into the air). Gross. 10 minutes of that and I was ready to walk downtown. Finally Trax came and they got onto one train, I got onto another one. Trouble's not quite over yet - we had a long stay at the 21st South station, while a Trax Cop peeked into each train. Don't know what, or who, they were looking for, but we were there for about 5 extra minutes while he looked. Finally we took off, and the rest of the trip was typical - not bad at all.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

2 out of 3 ain't bad.

Of the 3 issues I voted on, 2 of them went the way I voted; School Vouchers and Salt Lake City Mayor. In both cases over 60% of the people agreed with me. The one I lost was the bond for new police and fire facilitlies in Salt Lake City - it lost 51% to 49%.
I was struck by the contrast in the concession speeches of defeated candidate Dave Buhler and the Pro-voucher camp. Buhler congradulated Becker, and made a positive comment about the new mayor and the changes he will bring to the mayors office. The voucher people, on the other hand, slammed the anti-voucher people by saying that vouchers didn't pass because people "really don't care about children", and promised that vouchers are not dead in Utah. 62% of the people who cared enough to vote said they do not want vouchers. But that doesn't matter because, after all, they really know what's best for us. Didn't think I could have less respect for the pro-voucher leaders, but at least in that respect they proved me wrong.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Happy Birthday Anna

Thursday, November 01, 2007

"The H2 is the ultimate poseur vehicle."

The web site that Danny just introduced me to continues with : "It has the chassis of a Chevy Tahoe and a body that looks like the original Hummer; i.e. it's a Chevy Tahoe in disguise."
I'll let you discover the rest by giving you the link : FUH2, but I do want to offer one warning before you head over there : this site contains excessive use of the "F" word and thousands of images of H2's getting the middle finger salute." Do not go there if you are offended by either.
Otherwise - enjoy, because it expresses my exact feelings about the H2, and the H3 too.

MC for the Homecoming Queen assembly

Details later - in class and gotta pay attention... just wanted to show me in my tuxedo.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween.

and I'm in class......

Monday, October 29, 2007

Blog Linking 121

Well, I checked around and the only possibility I found was this - go to "Settings", scroll down to "Global Settings" and make sure that "show compose mode for all your blogs" is set to yes. If it's already set to yes, then I have no freakin' clue. Let me know if it works. And how do you copy and paste if you have no right-click?
Peace, love and harmony, man.
Like, let's groove on some bitchin' tunes while chillin' out with Mary
Jane. Just quit bogartin' the doobie and we'll all be cool man. Cool?
[The song, and driving around in a '69 LTD all day has warped the mind]

Blog Linking 101

Writer, first of all - if you really want to have that song going through your head all day - just click HERE.

I'll try a little tutorial here to help you with linking, but we can always get together sometime and I'll help you with it if this isn't clear enough. First of all - if you need a better look at the pictures, just click on the one you want to see and it will give you the full sized picture. Second - there are 2 ways to insert the link - you can either type the whole thing in or you can go to the page you are linking to and copy and paste the address into the dialog box.

  1. First type the words you are going to link to.
  2. Highlight the words and click on the link button (circled in red in the first picture).
  3. A dialog box will pop up, do not change anything other than the box that is circles in the second picture.
  4. Type in the complete address for the page you are linking to, or copy it from your browser and paste it in there (I don't know if the copy-paste will work with your Mac).
  5. Click "OK" and you're done.

If you have any questions - just ask.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

"I'd like to teach the world to sing, in perfect harmony..."

Getting home from church is hell with I-215 all shut down so they can move the new 45th South bridge into place. First of all, traffic from the freeway is diverted to Wasatch Boulevard, and the road is all clogged up with people watching. Of which I became one. Got a lot of pictures (HERE), but the best one was the one here. It reminded me of that Coke commercial from the 70's, I could almost see them swaying, hand in hand, singing about world peace. Except they were watching huge machines move a huge bridge. I also added some daytime pictures of the old mill, HERE. Anyway, seeing the whole thing was really cool, but there wasn't much reason to hang around too long, you can probably get everything from the pictures, 'cause it didn't move very fast. I was there for about an hour and I don't think it moved more than a foot.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Act my age? No thanks.

So Adele & I are out cruising in the LTD after going to a Halloween party and we end up down at the Haunted Old Mill. Remember, down in Sandy where they used to have the Haunted House every Halloween. It's all fenced in, barbed wire and everything. The parking lot is fenced in too, separate from the building. As we were out there taking pictures of the burned out building we're talking about how cool it would be to get in there and check it out. We decided that because of the barbed wire, and the need to climb fences, that we probably better not, we'll just settle for more pictures. Until these 3 in their early 20's (2 guys and a girl) show up taking pictures too. Their camera wasn't getting any good shots, so I started showing them the pictures I took. That was when they said something about sneaking in and how they'd found an easy entrance into the parking lot. Well, one thing leads to another and next thing I know Adele, these 3 and I are climbing around the fence into the parking lot. One more fence and the building is ours. We walk over to the fence surrounding the building and start looking for a way in. We go around the fence, starting up the side of the hill, out of the light and in the brush. We found a hole almost big enough to get it, but I got a little bit stuck and some really nice barbed wire tattoos, so we decided to hike further up the hill in search of a better way in. This is where Adele says something about remembering a teen horror movie that started this way, so I turn around say "Blair Witch Project" and take this picture (and a couple more). About 30 seconds later, from the top of the hill where there is nothing but Wasatch Boulevard, a bright light flashes in our eyes and a disembodied voice calls out "Trespassing, go back the way you came." and then the light goes out. Before we can even turn around the light comes back on and the voice again tells us that we are trespassing and need to leave immediately. Before he is even done our backs are to him and we're retreating down the hill, yet he takes the opportunity to remind us of our trespassing three more times before the light goes off and he is silent. Having no clue who this is we, of course, head back out to the car, and do a little debriefing amongst ourselves. Adele and I were talking about the other Halloween rituals we knew of (Emo's Tomb and such) and they seemed pretty interested, enough to ask where we were headed next. I told them we were going to head up to the top of the hill to see if we could see where the disembodied voice had come from (we'd already discussed this, and they had shown the same interest in it Adele and I had). I asked them if they wanted to join us and gestured towards the car. One of the guys jokingly said "yeah, you got some candy in there too?" (you had to be there because it didn't come out as creeped out as it sounds like). So we laughed, said our good-byes and Adele and I took off. Halfway up the hill it occurred to me that psychology is a weird thing. These 3 kids were more than willing to go into an abandoned Mill with us in the middle of the night, but wouldn't get in the back seat of my car. Adele pointed out that it's a territory kind of thing - the Mill is neutral ground, my car gives me the home team advantage. I don't blame them for not getting in the car, I probably wouldn't have either, but in reality either way could be fatal if we were homicidal maniacs. Alas, the adrenaline rush of the whole experience was too much for us older folks, and that was the end of the night. If you want to see all of the pictures from the night, click HERE. And : BOO!

If you were Dear Abby, what would you say?

Ok, I'll admit it. I read the advice column in the Tribune. It's at the top of the second page of comics and somehow it's infiltrated itself into my morning routine. Some have been amusing, some have been insightful and even infuriating. But nothing has compared to the cluelessness of this one from the other day :

Dear Carolyn: For 15 years now, my wife and I have carried my daughter and son-in-law financially. We have carried the loans for every house and car they have owned, given them over $80,000, and they are repaying $20,000 more in loans. My daughter recently got a tatoo, and when I inquired about it, she said it was her body, etc. I am not a big fan of tattoos on men, let alone women, let alone my daughter. I initially asked if she would remove it and she said no. I then very politely reminded her of the past 15 years of money and favors, and how we had asked for very little in return. I then asked her to please, please do me a favor and have it removed. She went off on me like a nuclear bomb about everything she didn't like about me (intrusive, controlling, etc.) and basically told me to go to hell. Hurt is severely inadequate to describe my reaction. What do you think of her reaction? [signed] - Spoiled Daughter?

I'm not going to post her response, or mine, yet. Just want to see what you all think before I do.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Cyberbullying Workshop.

Anyone with kids under the age of 18 really ought to check out this workshop on Cyberbullying.

click here to link to the info.

Another Urban Legend we can only hope is true....

A man was being tailgated by a stressed out woman on a busy boulevard. Suddenly, the light turned yellow, just in front of him. He did the right thing, stopping at the crosswalk, even though he could have beaten the red light by accelerating through the intersection. The tailgating woman was furious and honked her horn, screaming in frustration as she missed her chance to get through the intersection, dropping her cell phone and makeup. As she was still in mid-rant, she heard a tap on her window and looked up into the face of a very serious police officer. The officer ordered her to exit her car with her hands up. He took her to the police station where she was searched, finger printed, photographed, and placed in a holding cell. After a couple of hours, a policeman approached the cell and opened the door. She was escorted back to the booking desk where the arresting officer was waiting with her personal effects. He said, "I'm very sorry for this mistake. You see, I pulled up behind your car while you wereblowing your horn, flipping off the guy in front of you, and cussing a blue streak at him. Inoticed the 'What Would Jesus Do' bumper sticker, the 'Choose Life' license plate holder, the 'Follow Me to Sunday-School' bumper sticker, And the chrome-plated Christian fish emblem on the trunk, naturally..... I assumed you had stolen the car."
There is a theory that every urban legend has core of truth, that something happened that started the urban legend. For example the legend of the lady who sold her soon-to-be-exhusband's brand new BMW for $50. Chances are someone, somewhere sold her husband's car dirt cheap just to spite him. Maybe it was $1,000, maybe it was a 3 year old Chevy. Probably not a brand new BMW. As the story gets around people embellish it and, as in the story above, the woman ends up in jail for a couple of hours. The cop probably just had her pull out all her information to confirm she owned the car. But that doesn't make as good a story.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


Ok, somebody wasn't paying attention when they were leaving the parking lot up at the U where I have my classes. Usually when you hit a curb, you think "Hmm, maybe I ought to stop?" not "Hmm, maybe I ought to hit the gas and try to get over it?" My opinion is that she was on the phone when it happened, but then again I have to admit a bias against driving and phones. It could have as easily been that she hit the gas when she meant to hit the brake. I don't know. But I do know that the car is resting right on the frame, and the exaust system. Although I do find it a little bit amusing, I also have to say I feel for her - unless she really was on the phone.....
Just had a break in class, went out to check on the progress. Got out there just in time to see her drive away - the tow truck that lifted the front end over the ledge was still there. Well, I'm glad she didn't totally mess up the car, but I still think she's gonna have exaust problems in the future.