Monday, November 28, 2011


This week’s Thematic Photographic theme is “flash of color”.  If you want to see other entries, and hopefully enter your own pictures, click on the banner below.

Either way, here are my choices for this week.  This first one is from a laser light show during an integrated science and music assembly we recently had at the school, titled “Stairway to Science”.  The music and science teachers did an awesome job of blending the two together.

This is another laser show at UVCC (Utah Valley Community College) that we took some of the high school students to a few years back.

And finally, a couple of dancing-with-glow-sticks pictures I captured at a the school’s Halloween dance several years back.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Sugar hangover.

I woke up this morning with a huge headache, dry mouth and upset stomach.  All the symptoms of a night of heavy alcohol consumption.  Problem is, we didn’t drink any alcohol at all last night, not even a glass of wine with dinner. 

What I woke up with was a sugar hangover.  Because my A1c was just below the diabetic level a few years ago, I’ve almost completely cut out sugar and drastically reduced carbs in my diet.  I’ve brought my A1c level down to just a skitch above normal.  This gives me the leeway to indulge when relatives bring some incredible home made cheesecake and pumpkin, pecan and lemon meringue pies to Thanksgiving dinner.

Except that this leaves me with a sugar hangover the next day.

Well, at least I don’t make a fool of myself when I’m on a sugar high.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

New poster for the classroom,

"♪ Jingle bells,
Twilight smells,
Edward ran away,
Jacob cries,
Bella dies,
Potter all the way! ♪"
Courtesy of The Gearheads.
I really do think I’m going to post that on the bulletin board at school.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Real or retaliation? What’s your opinion?

Here’s the scenario: You’re checking out the reviews on a local restaurant on three different review sites..
On the first site, the 10 reviews average out to 3½ stars out of 5, the same was true for the 7 reviews at the second site.  Over at  the third site, 46 people voted and 84% liked the restaurant.
You scroll down and read these negative reviews:

Bertha K. 1 review

I see that a bad review of [this restaurant] was deleted. Perhaps that person went too far or it got too personal for this site. As a paying customer, let me state that this is a fact. I personally have witnessed mice scurrying around [this restaurant]. This is why I refuse to ever think about ordering a pizza from them again. In the past, they made a fairly good pie, but, now their pies get very soupy and their sourdough is quite bland. They also have some of the most unkempt, filthy employees I have ever seen, whether you are picking up or getting delivery. In addition, the accommodations for dining onsite are atrocious, with sparse seating and tables and a very casual, dare I say, unprofessional environment. Poor service and a devil-may-care ambience more suited to tattooing that family dining. I looked past a few of these unsavory items in the past, but when I saw the mice it was adios for me.

SLC's Worst Pizza
by yodlewoman
What a sad day that slacker expressionism enters the workplace. It makes for a revolting dining experience. No hairnets, unlaundered clothing (notice I didn't say uniforms), and a could-care-less attitude. If that wasn't bad enough, read on.
On to the cuisine. I use the word cuisine liberally. The pizza dough was so lacking in taste, I almost thought it was not sourdough. I ordered a combo and came away extremely dissatisfied. The cheese on top didn't adhere to the toppings, which included uncooked green peppers and rotting mushrooms. I ate one piece and had to throw the rest out. Unfortunately, or unfortunately, I could not return the pie because I did not even contemplate dining there--that's the fortunate part.

November 9, 2011
This Place Is God Awful!!
by Min Rentals (1 review)

Dude, this pie place is for the birds, yeah I threw my flattened, frozen pizza out my window to the pigeons below. Delivery was a joke! Dude was unconcerned that he was over 30 minutes late. I also ordered the garlic balls and they came cold and greasy, like they were used to clean up the BP Gulf oil spill. After eating just one of those things, I felt like I was one of those sea birds and that I needed some mild dish detergent and a good scrubbing. Try anything else. Hell, go get a Fruschetta's or a Red Baron and save some money--your taste buds will thank you.

by FredHere
I have gotten more cold, watery, flavorless pizzas from [this restaurant] than any other pizza place in SLC. The phone help was rude. The delivery guys could care less. Used to be good some time ago, but now it's just seems to be a failing enterprise. I finally learned my lesson after getting pretty sick. Avoid this place like the plague!!

by muchwind
Ordered the garlic rolls, a salad, and a combo pizza. Came delivered with the cheese stuck to the box and cold...ABOUT 40 MIINUTES LATE!! The pizza dough was tasteless. The toppings were minimal, to say the least. Sauce was meh! I ate about half a slice (it tasted as bad as it looked) and tried to pass it off to my roommates, but they not-so-politely declined. You see, they had been trying to eat a garlic roll and decided they were better off eating drywall. The salad? Wilted, slimy, and starting to turn. Unfortunately, too late to call them back once it finally got to me; I'll have to let it go and vow never to eat this junk again. [this restaurant] is an unholy mess!
Go anywhere else. [this restaurant] seems more like a prison chow line than a reputable, family dining experience.

November 21, 2011
Well, I Never...
by Whiteflower (1 review)

I order a pesto chicken special with artichoke hearts late one friday night, thinking it would be a gourmet delight, as their ads and website had promised...was I surprised! I'm not sure what their recipe for pesto includes, but the chunky bitter mess I tasted hardly qualifies as "gourmet." In addition, the chicken was barely warm; quite a food disaster, if you ask me! and, the red onions included part of the peel...ick! Poor quality control abounds!! I will never order again.

Dave K. 1 review

I had the big wheel.  It's their version of a combination pie.  It is so bad!  Just drenched with water from all the undercooked toppings.  Salad was barely passable.  Service was on the apathetic side of things.  Everything is overpriced.  Poor to mediocre all the way around.  I would not recommend [this restaurant].

by sychoplant
These bad reviews are spot on!! I don't eat at [this restaurant] anymore, cause it is just such a terrible experiense! The food is horrible and expensive! People there look slobby and shabby! Why do you trust the good reviews?! They could be just as bogus as Wilhelm says the bad reviews are. See for yourself--yes!! But, wait a few months when they can revert to their normal selves, dirty uniforms, really bad food, and really lazy service!!! This pizza place is so bad!

I’m just curious about people’s reactions to these kinds of reviews.  Please let me know your first impressions after reading them, both individually and in tandem.  I will post your comments anonymously if you ask me to.   Thank you for helping me with this little bit of social research.

Sunday, November 20, 2011


My writer friend, Lisa, wrote a post today about her blog stats, so I went and checked mine.
The top two viewed posts of mine are, in this order:
  1. Walmartians, run for your life:…….….2,857 views.
Ever since I’ve started watching my stats, these two have been in the top 5 viewed posts for the All Time, Month, and Week categories, every time I checked.
This has always bothered me, because it means that my stats are a little skewed, and I’m not getting a good feel for who is coming by to see my stuff on a regular basis.  The popularity of those two posts is shown in the search keywords, people who are searching for JNCO Jeans and Walmartians and are not intentionally coming to visit my blog.
Now, I haven’t been losing a lot of sleep over it.  The truth is that I blog for the personal satisfaction I get from it, not to see how popular I can get.  I do truly appreciate and love the few regulars that drop by and comment, and I’m not completely immune to the compliments I get.  But if all I really wanted to do is rack up a huge list of followers I’d just get on Facebook, make a bunch of comments (good or bad) on Justin Beiber, Twilight, Harry Potter and World of Warcraft III and I’d have a list of 14 year-old “friends” a mile long. (Which is why my Facebook account remains dormant for months in a row).
So, all that leads up to this: For the first time ever, neither of those posts are on the top five viewed posts for this week!  Even better, 3 of the top 5 are from this month and JNCO jeans fell off the top five list for the whole last month.
Which means that even though the overall number of page views has dropped, more of them are for current posts and bound to be intentional.
Thank you.  I love your comments and trading comments, ideas and opinions with all of you.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Più dei Classici

Postcards.  Used to be that anytime you went anywhere you would tell your friends and family “I’ll send you a postcard.”

Now with almost every cell phone having a camera and texting, we just catch a snap and send it to everyone in our contacts.  Who needs postcards anymore?

I laminated a bunch of postcards a while ago.  I have no idea where I got them, but I do know most of them came from my dad’s side of the family from the sender and receiver information on the back.  These date all the way back to 1937.  I have no idea where some of them were sent from, what they are of or even who sent them, but here they are.

I have no idea what the theory was behind producing this postcard, but as you can see from the back, it really was one.

The names and address on the postcards have not been changed because they are decades old and the innocent need not be protected anymore.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Quartet of Classic Cars

Here’s what you’ve all been expecting from me.  I tried to fight the urge to show off these four, but just couldn’t do it.  I’m a weak man.

The second car I ever owned was a 1969 Ford LTD 2 door hardtop.  I regularly packed over 10 teenagers in it (seatbelts, we don’ need no stinkin’ seatbelts).  Yeah, not smart, but we never went far.  Usually just from East High to the Village Inn a few blocks away.

Ever since then I’ve been in love with those huge, old Fords.  In my 35 years of buying cars, I’ve owned ten LTDs and two Mercury Marquis (Marquises?  Marquis’, Marquii?), which is the identical cousin to the LTD.

I bought the convertible in January of 1999, online from a dealership somewhere in Ohio or Iowa.  That was the year they had a month of ice storms in the area and I had to wait 2 or 3 long weeks before they could ship it out to me.  I can still remember them pulling it off the car carrier in the parking lot of Skyline High.  White, with a bright red naugahyde interior, it was love at first sight.  Other than having the engine rebuilt about 10 years ago, I’ve done very little to it, although right now it’s waiting for me to save the money for a new transmission.

It wasn’t until October of 2007 that I decided to add onto the collection.  I always wished my first LTD had been a 4 door hardtop, straight out of Hawaii Five-0 and with that big opening in the side with all the widows down, it was the next best thing to a convertible.  And even better in the winter.  So I got online again and found this one in the L.A. area.  Flew my two brother’s out there and it made it all the way back to Salt Lake City, smooth as silk, until the battery gave out on the exit ramp going to my brother’s house.

Around that same time I saw this wagon in a parking lot nearby and commented to my little brother that I’d love to add that one to my collection.  Six months later he ran into the owner in another parking lot, got to talking to him, gave him my phone # and said that if he ever thought about selling it to give me a call.  Six months after that, in July of 2008, he called and I bought.

In November of 2009 one of my brother’s neighbors mentioned an old LTD they had in the driveway that they were going to just have towed away.  It was old, had been sitting for several years, a little bit rusty and was just taking up room.  My brother and his wife (The Gearheads) said “Uh, No.  We’ll give you a couple hundred bucks for it.”  Then they made the mistake (or maybe intentionally) of telling me about it and agreed to let me have it.  They didn’t really want the car, just hated seeing it go to scrap.  So I paid $200 for it, put a new vinyl roof on it ($450), new dual exhaust ($450) and 4 new tires (hmm, about $450 also).  Other than a couple bottles of gas stabilizer and a few tanks of gas to run out the years old gas in the tank, the car has been the best running and riding one of the bunch.

So, there’s my Quartet of Classic Cars.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


I have to admit that I thought of these because of Writer’s wax paper picture.

One of my roommates from a few years ago found these when he was unpacking things he inherited from his grandmother.  He was going to throw them out and I asked for them, ‘cause I thought they were cool, and still do.01

I wonder how many megapixels this one has?02

Whoa! 23¢ a pound. They must be incredible steaks.03

We get a dollar for a chocolate donut at the Chevron.04

Broken fingernails really distract from those yellow, nicotine stained fingers, don’t they?05

That’s the dealership that owned the building the original Free Wheeler Pizza was in.06

There’s the exact spot.07

Brand new hot water heating plant.  Cooooll.08

Not a whole lot of farm land left in that area, mostly housing subdivisions and strip malls. 09

How long has it been since there has actually been a Society Section?10

I’ve seen The Wizard of Oz dozens of times, just never in the theater.11

And finally, beer brewed in Utah?  Nahhh.12

For more classic pictures, click on the banner below.TP


Monday, November 14, 2011

Why district people need to spend more time in the classroom.

We’ve learned all the keys on the keyboard now, so my Keyboarding classes are ready to start practicing and memorizing the “High Frequency Words”, the most common 100 words used in business correspondence.

Luckily (sort of) the District  person (from another school district, not mine) who taught my class last summer supplied us with Powerpoint presentations for the kids to follow.  I’m on the third set, #51 through 75, and the last five words in the presentation, in the order they show up, are:






I almost plotzed when I saw those words come up on the screen.  Fortunately they show up one at a time, and the students at the school I’m at are quite a bit more naïve than I’m used to.  Not a single one, in any of my 3 classes, said anything or even gave a snicker, and we went through the set at least three times each class.

On the other hand, the teachers I showed it to all laughed.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Stereotypes and being just plain rude.

I’m not a big fan of the Republican party here in the United States.  I’m registered as an independent and vote Democrat probably 90% of the time.  But that didn’t stop me from wanting to tell this customer today to just shut up, pay for her damn beer and get the hell out.

She’s probably in her late 20’s or early 30’s.  She and her friend come into the store and as they are walking around getting their stuff I hear them bitching and moaning about Republicans.  That’s OK, everyone has their right to their opinion and to talk about it with their friends.

My coworker was ringing her up, I was ringing up one of our regulars, when an older  man in a 3-piece suit comes in to use the restroom.  Bitchy customer looks at him and asks him “Are you a Republican?”  He replies politely "Why?” She comes back with “It’s a yes or no question, just answer it.”  He says “Yes.”

“Eeeeeeewwwwwwwwwwww.”  Yes, she actually said that.  The poor man just wanted to pee, didn’t confront her at all and she feels the need to offend him.

Funny thing, though, is that she didn’t bother asking the 20 year old guy with long hair wearing jeans and a T-shirt that question.  Or any of the other 3 or 4 customers that were in the store.  Nope, because if you’re wearing a 3 piece suit you must be a Republican.  And if you’re a Republican you must want to ban all birth-control and force every pregnant woman to carry every unwanted child to term.  Because, as we all know, that’s what every Republican believes. (The coworker helping her asked her why she hated Republicans so bad, and that’s all she came up with.)

It’s just plain stupid to think that every Republican has the exact same beliefs, just like it would be stupid to think that every Democrat wants to ban all guns, get every internal combustion engine removed from the planet and eliminate all defense funding.

And it’s just downright rude to drag some unsuspecting guy who just wants to relieve himself into your own bad hair day.  No excuse for it.


I’m addicted to the internet.

I don’t spend hours and hours on it, usually it’s 15 minutes here, 20 minutes there, checking my emails, paying my bills or visiting and/or posting on blogs.  I don’t Facebook, I don’t Tweet and it’s not online gaming or porn.  Those of you who’ve been visiting my blog know that I can go days without posting, so it’s not that I have to be online all the time.

But when I do want to get online and it’s not available, that’s when the addiction shows up.

I came home from Chevron last night and tried to hop on to check my email and see if there were any new comments on my blog and new posts on the blogs I follow.

No internet.  I unplugged the modem, counted to 20 to let it reset, and then hoped for the best.  Nada.  I unplugged the router, counted to 20 to let it reset, and then hoped some more.  Nothing.  I shut both computers down, unplugged the entire system from the wall, went and made dinner and then booted everything up again and prayed.  Still the big Zip.  At this point hoping and praying devolved into swearing.

After I got tired of that I just went to bed (it was only 8:30) with the plan to get up early and go to the cable company and see what was up.

This morning I got up and plugged everything back in and turned it all on.  I apprehensively clicked the Firefox icon and waited to see.

I could feel the anxiety leave as my blog loaded up completely, my blood pressure returning to normal.  The world was back to normal.  The cats, sensing my change in mood, returned to the living room.  All is well.

Until the next time the cable company has a glitch.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Gone, white and now red.

I’ve had my head shaved at school when the student body met a goal on our fundraiser.

Yeah, went to Mohawk first, before the complete shave.

I bleached my hair blond at another school for career day, so I could come as the science teacher that the kids kept calling by my name and me by his.

And now, today I went red, University of Utah red.

Our students collected over 1,200 cans and boxes of food for the food pantry.  Each can or box counted as a vote for either The University of Utah or Brigham Young University, depending on who the donor wanted to vote for.

Students got to wear the logo of the winning University today, and I agreed to color my hair to match.  U of U red or BYU blue.  Well, the U of U won, some 700 cans to 500 cans, so I painted my hair red.  The kids loved it, the other teachers were highly amused.  Even the principal got a chuckle out of it.  And I got to act like a kid again.  Fun day.