Thursday, March 29, 2012

Well... Isn't That Lovely?

Real life (or 'RL' as all us cool kids call it) has been kicking my ass for over a week now. Between battling the cold, back-to-back 10 hour work days and midterms, I haven't had the physical or mental energy to do much more than sleep in my spare time. Then came the writer's block.

But I've recovered from the cold (mostly), my work schedule has gone back to normal and midterms are over. Plus, I'm writing, so I guess that's something. So as soon as I can get some sleep, I should be back to my old self.

Anyway, that enough about me, let's talk about... me... I guess. More specifically about the blog award I got.
Isn't it lovely? By the way, yes, I did say that out loud in my Marvin the Martian voice. Brett from The Transformed Non-Conformist passed this baby onto me.

When I saw that I got it, I showed it to Mrs. C who just walked into the room.

Mrs. C: A what?
Me: Blog award.
Mrs. C: What's it for?
Me: You get it when someone appreciate's your blog.
Mrs. C: Oh, that's nice.
Me: Yeah. Now all I have to do is share 7 things about myself.
Mrs. C: Why?
Me: Because those are the rules. Awards usually have rules. With this one I have to share 7 things about myself.
Mrs. C: Oh! So you get to talk about yourself even more. Now I see why you're enjoying this so much.
Me: Plus, I have tag 15 other people.
Mrs. C: What them?
Me: "Tag" them. I have to pass the award on to them.
Mrs. C: Oh... Okay. Wow! And you're always giving me flack for forwarding chain-mail.
Me: It's not chain-mail!
Mrs. C: Uh-huh...
Me: Well, you're not a blogger so you won't get it.
Mrs. C: No, I guess not.

Hmph! Chain-mail!

Anyway, here are 7 (more) facts about me:

1) I scoff at conspiracy theorists. It's not because I don't believe them. It's just that I think they worry about the wrong things. So what if secret societies run the world's Governments from the shadows? Do we really want those jokers running the show unsupervised? Aliens exist and have abducting our people? At lease they're only interested in hillbillies. I think there are greater issues to look into. I've already shared one of the items from my own conspiracy list, but here's another:

Secret Paranoid Suspicion# 8 - All the petty, seemingly random annoyances that happen through the day are not random. They're all orchestrated and coordinated in an effort to keep me from having one of those 'really great days' I always here people talking about. I don't know who's behind it or why, but I will find you some day, and we're going to have a long talk.

2) I think I may have discovered what my super power is. I believe I might have the power to become invisible, or at least translucent. Only, it happens without my knowing and, generally, in large crowds. This is the only explanation I have for why people insist on walking into and/or suddenly stopping in front of me.

Case in point: The other day I walking through one of the downtown malls to get to work and I this very pregnant woman, who was walking in the opposite direction suddenly swerved right in front of me and stopped to look at something in a show window. In that 1/2 second I had to make a decision. I could a) veer right and throw myself into the same shop window that she was looking at, b) veer left and hit the glass showcase of a kiosk in the middle of the corridor, c) continue on and crash into said pregnant woman or d) try to stop in time.

Naturally, I chose option d as a and b would have resulted in serious harm to my person and as for c, that's the worst option of all. If I had run into the pregnant lady, it wouldn't matter if she was wrong or not. She'd have the public on her side and I'd be the careless asshole that wasn't looking where he was going. Let's be real, no matter what, when it's you versus a pregnant woman, you always lose. My sudden stop caused a ten pedestrian pileup that almost made the evening news that day. Luckily, a politician did something bordering on controversial and the story got buried.

3) I learned about sex at an moderately early age from the large selection of porn my dad kept in a box in a bedroom cabinet. You see, after his video rental club folded he brought a lot of his video cassettes home. Added to this, after I got home from school I had the entire house to myself for hours since my father had to work two jobs and my mother normally spent the afternoons with her sisters who lived not too far away. My two younger sisters would normally go there after school too.

I was 11. I was bored. I had the house to myself and decided to rummage through my parents stuff. I've always been meticulous about putting things back exactly how I found them so I know I'd never get caught. I wasn't searching for too long before I came upon this cardboard box. As I opened it the odd stench of guilt and shame filled my nostrils. Then there was this strange music, very faint. it sounded like "bom-chicka-wah-wah". I looked inside. What I found was more 70's porn than it should have been legal to have all in one place.

You can imagine how the months that followed went. But I don't recommend you try to imagine it...

No, seriously! Stop it!

4) I mask the fact that the scenes in horror movies where someone may be about to get killed will sometimes usually freak me out a little lot. I do this by a) pretending I'm adjusting my seating position during a suspenseful moment to give myself an excuse to look away from the screen, b) focusing all my energy on remaining perfectly still and not jumping out of my chair when the killer/alien/monster suddenly shoved its blade/claws through the slutty blonde's rib cage from behind and she looks down to see her beating heart being held in front her chest before it stops and she dies...

I may not sleep tonight.

5) I can talk in a few accents. I'm told I'm pretty good too. I've been practicing since I was a teenager and I can pull off decent Scottish, French, Russian and Irish accents. I'd give you a few examples but, unfortunately, it seems I suck at writing in accents. Too bad.

6) There isn't a woman on this plant that can make me cheat on my wife. Even Mrs. C knows it. She even said so in a telephone conversation we had last year.

Mrs. C: Oh, please! We both know that unless she's an alien, android who came back from the future, you won't even think about cheating.
Me: I..! You're probably right.

I couldn't think of an argument against her logic back then, and I still can't.

7) One day, years ago, I was in the shower and the thought popped into my head, "What if I pull this shower curtain and there's a zombie on the other side?"

That question bugged me for some days after that until I finally worked out a viable escape plan and determined exactly what items in the shower caddy could penetrate a skull if enough force was applied.

I adjusted that plan to our new place and still stand by it today.

As for the 15 people I'm supposed to tag, no!

Come on! you really want to put me through that?

Fine! But I say 5 works just fine. So, in no particular order:


There! I'm done. I officially declare this bout of writers block over. Now... I'm going to bed.

Monday, March 19, 2012

My (Wife's) (Almost) Best Friend's Wedding.

Yesterday, Mrs. C & I went to the wedding of one of her really good friends, Psycho (actually very close to her real name... and personality). Psycho is one of those friends you always want around to keep things from getting boring, yet you're always worried that you'll end up in a strange part of town late at night (or in jail) when you go out to hang. Basically, one of the most essential friends you can have.

Psycho and her new husband, J have had a long and interesting relationship, as you'd guess. They dated, fought, broke up, filed assault charges, made up, got back together... lather, rinse, repeat...

As I said, Mrs. C and Psycho are really good friends, not best friends, but they're pretty close. During one or two of the times when Psycho and J were on a break, Mrs. C ended up somehow being the reluctant "wing-man" when Psycho wanted to go out to find a revenge date.

However, all those ups and down aside, J and Psycho finally decided it was time to settle down and yesterday, they became man and wife.

The wedding went smoothly enough. No fights or drama of any kind. In fact, Mrs. C and I got a little bored after a while. I mean, this was Psycho after all. We were expecting to at least see one fight. Especially after Mrs. C described Psycho's new mother-in-law. Even Mrs. C wanted to smack her when she met her for the first time yesterday.

Nothing! Everybody behaved themselves. Lame! On top of that, the host, one of the pastors of the church, promised to have things moving quickly.

He lied.

Mrs. C: (Looking up from her cell phone) Are they married yet?
Me: Nope. He's telling some story about his childhood... I think.
Mrs. C: Groan!

I was wearing a new shirt and, as new clothes often have, there were a few loose threads here and there. I noticed one sticking out of my cuff. It was pretty long and eventually I began to distract myself with it. Without realizing it, I made this...
A hangman's noose... I think that about summed up how I felt. I showed it to Mrs. C.

Mrs. C: Ass.

That was just a front. She was smiling when she said it so I know she got where I was coming from.

After the ceremony, as the tradition goes, the wedding party went to a scenic spot in the city to take some photos before heading to the after party (aka: wedding reception). We all went to the courtyard of this hotel by the waterfront that was the new popular spot to take wedding photos.
After a while we got tired of this too, especially Mrs. C. Her new shoes weren't broken-in yet and not very forgiving when it came to long periods of standing.

Mrs. C: My feet are killing me!
Me: So you've said... like five times now.
Mrs. C: I can't take these shoes anymore. I'm taking them off.
Me: Go ahead, just... Wait! Where'd you go?
Mrs. C: Ha-ha! Very funny.

Of course, I had to get a picture of the reason for that little exchange...
Holy crap! That's a lotta heel!
She insisted I get the good side.
In all honesty, can you really blame me! My wife just sank 4 inches into the ground! She owns other shoes with the same length heel, but it always seems to catch me by surprise.

The rest of the day went pretty uneventful. The pastor that hosted the ceremony also emceed the after party (Outstanding!)This time, he promised he'd keep the speeches short.

He lied again.

Food was served, the DJ sucked, we ate, mingled a little bit and left. Personally, I think that's the last wedding I want to go to for a long time.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

SnapIt - The Time I Tried To Review A Product.

The other day I got an email from someone asking me to review their software. Now, while I don't normally do that kind of stuff, I decided, "What the hell?" and said yes. Plus, I thought maybe it would lead to other offers which would lead to tons of money and me realizing my dream of quitting my job and being able to live off money I make from the internet.

Sounds realistic, right?

Anyway, I'm sure some of you may have heard about SnapIt Screen Capture software.
It's an easy-to-use screen capture software that not only allows you to capture any image from your computer screen, but let's you drag and select the part of the image you want.
As the website describes this Screen Capture Software:

Capture anything you see on your PC screen with SnapIt. It is convenient tool for graphic designers, bloggers who capture and crop images for their posts, for tech writers who need to describe menus and interfaces of applications, web designers and those who work with graphics every day. It captures and auto saves images with one click.

- Supports hotkeys, auto-saving, clipboard
- Automatically copies screenshots to the clipboard
- Tracks capture history, auto-saves captured images
- Saves files in BMP, GIF, JPEG, PNG and TIFF formats
-Auto-names captured images

So I gave the free trial version a spin and they're right about it being a very easy-to-use software. You just preset where you want your image saved, what format you want it saved in and you're set. When you want to capture an image all you have to do is hit 'PrintScreen' (that is set by default but you can change it if you like).

So let's say we use this pic from a recent Sprocket Ink post I did:
Once you have the pic up on your screen, just hit 'PrintScreen' and drag and select any area of the screen you want. Like so:
or so:
or so:
or so:
You get the idea.

That's all there is to it! It's process light, so it wont slow your computer down and under US$20. (US$17.99 to be exact). Not bad if you have images to crop and don't want to go get a degree in computing to use some complicated program.
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Saturday, March 10, 2012

The Time I May Have Set In Motion The End Of Mankind...

I've mentioned our little war we've had going on with the ants that seem to be in such large numbers around here. We've managed to get the situation under control (and our electric kettle working again) but the war with them is ongoing and one of the things that we always have to look out for is any food left out in the open. It's weird but that seems to attract a lot more of them.
English: Ants eating slice of an apple!

Usually, when we go into the kitchen, at least one or two the little buggers are always there, scouting for any carelessly exposed food to run home and tell the others about. And they don't miss a thing. To deal with this, we rely a lot on either putting things into sealed containers or in the fridge, but that practice isn't always followed.

Like last night. Someone left the bread out on the counter and, as you may have guessed, they found it and they were loving it. Since it was just the last bit of it, I wasn't too broken up about tossing it...

But then, you see, I kinda had this bright idea...

Before I tossed the bread, ants and all, I... thought... I'd just... putthebreadinthemicrowaveandkilltheantsfirst! Just for a few seconds.

Anyway, it didn't work. Thirty seconds later, I took it out and they were still scurrying around all over that bread. The only difference now was the bread was warmer and this was starting to get their attention, but they weren't really trying to get away. So I put it back in again. This time, I gave it 45 seconds more.


By the way, did you know that bread does this weird, melty thing when you nuke it for too long. I did *not* know that.

To my surprise, the ants still survived, but they definitely didn't want any more of that bread. I guess at this point, it must have felt like trudging through hot, white mud. I forgot about them for a few seconds as I examined the new gooey consistency of the bread and hadn't noticed most of them were getting away. Many even made it back to the crevices and cracks that provide them safe passage around the kitchen.

It didn't occur to me until after that I had just exposed them to all those microwaves and sent them back to mingle with the rest of the colony. So if there's some new ant-borne super virus sweeping the earth in the near future, um, my bad.
Worse yet is if the ants develop super intelligence and begin waging war on human kind. I mean, they're already way too organized as is. Have you seen the video that shows the inside of an ant colony?
No way these things should be made any smarter!

This one's totally on me, guys! Whatever comes, just know I accept full responsibility and they'll probably come after me first for killing so many of their brethren in our earlier skirmishes anyway.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

A Bird In The Hand...

Yesterday, while I was getting ready for work I heard a strange noise coming from the kitchen. That's when I found this:
You may have me now, but the joke's on you when you see what I left in your hand.

A Ground Dove. I don't know that much about birds but I could tell it's young. It came in through an open window and was freaking out a little because it felt trapped. It fluttered around until it ended up stuck in a waste basket.

Coincidentally, My post on Sprocket Ink today is about a trapped bird. Only, this is about one that got away. Click on the SI badge to the right to see what I'm talking about.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Guess Who...

Did you read my post at Sprocket Ink yesterday? You should. It's about cats... mostly. And about Japan, of course. So you know there's more to this than I'm letting on.

By the way, in my last post I used this picture to describe how I felt with a nasty cold outbreak currently striking down people here in good old T&T.
One person in particular who had to deal with this bug was Mrs. C. She's mostly recovered although she still has to get over her deep scratchy sexy voice the cold left her with. One of my blogging besties, dbs from think.stew suggested that homemade hazmat picture could make a good meme, and I agree.

I'll give one a try now. This is one to describe how I've felt going out to work these last few days:
I could have some fun with this...

Anyway, the internet's up and running again, so you'll soon see me lurking around your blogs again and leaving awkward inspiring comments. You were warned.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Weekend Wrap-Up: Technical Difficulties & Health Issues.

My internet's still down at home so I'm resorting to alternate means of feeding my online addiction, such as blogging from my Blackberry, using my school's wi-fi, etc. Today it's the internet cafe.

A quick update: There's a nasty cold going around here that's giving me Contagion flashbacks. I've been able to mostly fight it off but Mrs. C fell victim to it yesterday. There lies an interesting dynamic in our relationship. Normally with couples, it's expected that men turn into total babies when they get sick and not so much the women. However, our situation is reversed. I may gripe a little, but I tend to tough it out. Mrs. C, on the other hand, doesn't take it so well (it should be noted that I'm grossly understating that fact).

Judging from what I've seen of this virus so far, I'm thinking a homemade hazmat suit isn't such a bad idea after all.
Let's see... the wife needs Nyquil, tissues, more pillows to cry into...
Anyway, as for posting, things have been pretty quiet here (as a result of aforementioned internet problems). I've still been doing my thing over on Sprocket Ink though:
- I posted on Tuesday about a fetish themed soft drink sensation that can only be made in Japan.

- On Thursday I wrote an ongoing dispute that proves just how much size matters in some countries.

Surprisingly, I managed to keep both these post not only safe for work but in the G to PG rating. Don't let that disappoint you, though. They're still worth the read.

While you catch up on those I'm off to get me some rubber gloves, garbage bags and duct tape. For the hazmat suit, of course.

And, let's not forget to all wish Mrs. C a speedy recovery... For both our sakes.