28 February 2012


It's Tuesday and the wife is sick. I also learned something 'interesting' (in the Chinese proverb way) at work today.

So, for tonight, I give you cat body language.

27 February 2012

When Sales Tax Attacks

I'm still looking for that rez even though we're back home now. So no long post today. Just this little surprise courtesy of the city of Lynchburg, VA.

That is not a typo.
I was so stunned, I looked it up. The Commonwealth of Virginia has a 5% sales tax. Lynchburg has an additional 6.5% sales tax! That's on all items, by the way. Once I was aware of it, I began looking at all of my receipts including the hotel receipt.

If my city ever thinks of something this vile, I might run for office.

26 February 2012

Silent Sunday

Shoe Coffee

I said I'd provide more details today about the horrors of driving, but, alas, I'm still seeking a mender (WTB! PST! KTHXBAI!). Then I looked at the clock and realized it was 1 a.m. and decided I should push something I was going to save for later this week.

There was a piece of plastic from a coffee cup on the leg rest in our hotel room Saturday. I said it was definitely not ours.

Pictured: definitely not ours.
Evil Space Monkey: "No, that came out of my shoe, remember?"
Oracle of Truth: "Why was there a piece of coffee cup in your shoe?"
Evil Space Monkey: "I don't know. I blame you."
Oracle of Truth: "I do not drink coffee from shoes."

And that's why I'm the Oracle of Truth, boys and girls. Where she wants to weigh down the facts with blame, I cut right to the heart—the kernel, if you will—of the matter, and unveil the Truth™.

Also, I had nothing to do with that thing. I can't remember the last time I had coffee from a black-lidded cup.

24 February 2012

Dead and Loving It

I believe I previously recounted the lack of sleep I incurred on Wednesday night. Last night I managed even less.

Today was PFC Brother-in-law's USMC graduation. Last night I went to bed around 1 a.m. and fell asleep close to 2 a.m. One of my other brothers-in-law and his friend arrived half an hour later to crash in our room. I managed to fall back asleep around 4:30 a.m.

His alarm went off futilely at 5 a.m. Mine went off at 5:15. Other than a 20 min. nap I caught while they were at the MCX, that's pretty much all the sleep I got.

Which isn't a problem if you're not driving 7.5 hours afterward.

Which I was.

Needless to say, I died in a fiery-deer-activated flaming wreck on the way to VA.

I concur.
I'll provide more details tomorrow after I find a healer for a rez and a mender to fix my gear.

23 February 2012

Automotive Archnemesisery

No, I don't think it's a word either.

In accordance with prophecy, we drove down to Parris Island last night. By we, I mean I drove the whole way and the wife got to sleep some. After we arrived, we had about a half hour downtime, during which my body decided it would have none of that, and I was forced (by my body) to sleep instead of going to family day to congratulate my brother-in-law.

I'm told in retrospect it was the right decision because of the back pain others incurred. Apparently Marine Corps boot camp is hard on everybody in proximity.

While driving down, we made remarkably good time, hitting no traffic, which is a borderline miracle when going around DC. Right after we got back on to I-95, though, I felt the car kick as the tachometer showed a jump of about 500 rpm suddenly at around 65 mph.

This displeased me.

The darned car has been stalking me, waiting until I was vulnerable before striking. Shortly after our first stop in Roanoke Rapids, NC, it kicked again and the Service Engine Soon light came on.

Three-hundred sixty-one miles short of my destination.

22 February 2012

WT* Wednesday

Normally, I would do this as Wordless Wednesday (if that sort of thing were possibly for a wordfiend like me). This picture, however, requires commentary.

I don't...understand....
Over the weekend, during my recent car troubles, I was trying to figure out where to find the camshaft position sensor on my car. So I started to type "Where to find (camshaft position sensor on a 2006 Nissan Sentra)." I just happened to stop after typing "Where to find" and this came up.

For the record, I have never searched on prostitutes in Baltimore before. Not only am I not that sort of person, but, seriously, Baltimore routinely leads the country in syphilis.

Also, I don't play Skyrim.

Anyway, it's times like these that I wish Autocomplete Me were still a full-on site.

21 February 2012


Over the past week, I have learned from my dreams that I am apparently an anarchist extremist living in a college dorm while working on his Ph.D. The former is directly attributable to taxes while the latter is apparently a demonstration of the phenomenal cosmic power of pizza.

Now that I mention it, there's a pretty good pizza place in the town in which I went to college....

But I digress.

My wife has asked why she hasn't been in my dreams, to which I responded:

Seems legit.
My most recent dream is making me think there may be something to this whole aliens thing.

20 February 2012

Trunk Junk: An Automotive Postscript

The Service Engine Soon light has not returned today, so that's a good sign. We also failed to get a single millimeter of precipitation from the supposed big winter storm that was to hit our area last night.

Which is an annoying sign.

Emboldened by my recent auto repair, I decided on a whim to attempt another feat of car fixerry. For years now we've had a problem with the trunk of the car, in which holding down the automatic trunk release button on the keychain had no effect. I noticed recently that it at least made a sound, so I decided to check it out. Here are the results.

You know that thing they say about mechanics trying to rip you off? Apparently it's true.

19 February 2012

Fermented Anger: An Automotive Saga

Sometimes when people learn that I'm a professor or get to see me display my professorial knowledge they'll comment something to the effect, "Wow. You're so smart."

And they manage to say it without seeming sarcastic, which is weird.

Since my job is to try to teach people something they all think they can't learn (another language), I often point out to them that it's not so much that I'm smart as that I am better educated in a specialized field.

Even if I'm smarter than most of them.

I say all of that to lead to this fact: I am a complete idiot when it comes to cars.

This is what the guys at Advance Auto Parts see when I come in.
When I was in 11th grade, my high school had us take the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB). At the time, I knew even less about tools like wrenches or the fabled socket wrench than I do right now. I would not be surprised if I said they were some kind of screwdrivers.

The military told me to be a social worker.

18 February 2012

Tears for Fears

My wife and I went to Advance Auto Parts today because we hate happiness. Since I didn't want to burn myself working on the car, we went to the Five Guys next door to have lunch. While we were eating, we noticed that most of the songs played were completely unfamiliar to us.

That is when they played Tears for Fears "Everybody Wants to Rule the World."

This was the highlight of my day so far.'s been a rough day.

My Life with the Suicide Car

The check engine light in my car came on today. This made me cross.

I'm totally taking my business to Burger King then.
The incident occurred just before I dropped the Space Monkey off at work. My mood regarding this was not aided by the part where she shifted the car into neutral at a stoplight.

17 February 2012

Date Night, Adjunct Style

It may come as a surprise to those who know me that Valentine's Day is not my favorite holiday. Wait...there's a word missing from that sentence. 'Not!' That's the word.

It may not come as a surprise to those who know me that Valentine's Day is not my favorite holiday. See, I prefer to love my wife every day of the year.

Speechless (because I'm lame).
It's not that I'm incapable of romance or smooveness. I have a story or two I could tell, but that would be bragging.

Also, Tuesday is a stupid day for a holiday.

15 February 2012

Pizza is a Strange Mistress

I don't know what I've been eating this week, but I've got another dream to talk about today. I mean, obviously, I know what I've been eating. I had pizza for dinner last night.

Possibly an explanation.
That would normally suffice except this dream came at 10 a.m. today (Tuesday is a stupid day), a full 11 hours after I had pizza. So...

14 February 2012

Delusions of Anarchy

Last night, I went to sleep very late. This tends to happen on Monday nights for some reason. I ended up having a lucid dream in which, for some reason, I was an anarchist extremist.

I was hoping I wouldn't have to wear a tie.
Yes, for some reason unbeknownst to me, my libertarian tendencies were somnambulantly extrapolated to a surprising degree. In this dream, I decided to act on this fervent extemism to reform the American government... doing something in Eastern Europe?

13 February 2012

Fail Like I Do

Tonight, we were playing Mario Kart Wii as is our wont. I have frequently used the phrase "Welcome to Fail-So-Hard University, where failures go to fail so hard" while playing Mario Kart Wii against my wife.

In case you don't get the allusion, BmoreBirdsNest

12 February 2012

Behold the Meal: Luxurious Po' Boy

Normally when I post a recipe here, it's my own. Today's recipe, however, comes from my poor ailing wife. She decided to make a sandwich out of last night's leftovers. Also, for once, we have a vegetarian option.

I'm not sure you can call it a Po' Boy when it's got brie.
Carnivore option: (leftover) chicken
Vegetarian option: (prepared) artichoke hearts
Optional vegetarian option: Extra-firm tofu, in thin strips
Spinach, chopped
Brie, cut in thin strips
Bread (we used Pretzel Bread)
Bread dipping oil (or olive oil with pepper and herbs)

WIS-WhaSH: Paging Dr. Dettweiler

Hello, Neighbor. Welcome, once again, to another episode of What I said; what she heard.

Her: "I can't go."
What I Said: "You should probably see a doctor about that."
Her: "Did you say, Dr. Dettweiler? Who's Dr. Dettweiler?"

What I Said: "You beat me (at Mario Kart Wii) again. Like a rented redheaded stepchild."
Her: "Like a rancid redheaded stepchild?"

Me: "...Yes, sweetie. Exactly."
Her: "Do they not...let them wash?"

09 February 2012

100 Days of Blogging

One hundred and two days ago, this blog did not exist. It was created so I could participate with my wife in NaBloPoMo. Since its creation at the beginning of November, I have written a blog post almost every day with one exception, which I followed up with two posts in one day. Yesterday's post was my hundredth.

It may please some to know that I have been thinking for the past day of how to form an English word meaning "100 days." Something in the category of 'centennial' but for days instead of years. The closest I've been able to figure is 'hekatemeral' (from the Greek 'hekaton' meaning "hundred" and 'hemera' meaning "day").

Apparently I shall have to coin that word.

As I performed a hekatemeral review, I found that my favorite humorous posts were probably the first seven posts I made. Apparently I'm just funnier when talking about my health, my wife, and my niblings, particularly when it has to do with how my wife or my niblings will ruin my health.

Mocking me as they do so.

08 February 2012

WIS-WhaSH: Ellicott City Jaguars

Before I ever started this blog, one of our original ideas was to feature occasional cases of me saying something and my wife misunderstanding it. You see, her hearing's going because of all the country music and NPR that she listens to, so this happens quite often.

Today, the topic "With what team will Peyton Manning end up?" came up on the radio. 

(WIS) What I said: "Maybe he should just go to Kansas City like Joe Montana."
(WhaSH) What she heard: "Maybe he should just go to Ellicott City like Joe Montana."

Ellicott City, MD: Home of Huggers? (Google Maps)
When I told her what I had actually said, she explained her mishearing to me with the comment, "I was gonna say, 'Why?'"

Now, the No Fun League's Jacksonville Jaguars have been rumored for a long time to be heading to another city, presumably Los Angeles. My wife and our friend Isolde are the only two actual Jacksonville Jaguars fans I've ever met, so on the rare occasion I'm feeling mean, I tease them on this.

Quoth I: "Because the Jacksonville Jaguars have decided to move their franchise, not to Los Angeles, but Ellicott City, MD, so they can be closer to their fan base."

I'm not entirely sure how they'd feel about that.

07 February 2012

Stream of Unconsciousness

Tuesday's always a long day, and evil men have made it longer. I don't have anything funny on my mind and a tragic lack of pictures on the phone to share.

This is most indecorous.

Which is a word too sophisticated for my phone.

There are over 170,000 words in the English language and dog may be two of them.

On Friday, I began application to a Ph.D. program. Though I have been promised 1500 to 2000 pages of reading per week for the next half decade or so, I am less intimidated by the program than by the application process.

I don't want to dog it after all.

06 February 2012

Our Happy Place

Whenever we feel down—which is unfortunately frequent recently thanks to evil people—we look to our happy place. Our happy place just happens to be occupied by a cat whom we adore tormenting.

I took video of us doing this to him on Friday and he actually fell off the couch (on to the seat of it)...5 seconds after I stopped recording.

Halftime Entertainment

As the crowds gathered and the 4th seal was peeled away, something inexplicable happened in Indianapolis tonight: Madonna performed the halftime show.

I will confess that the late January football game halftime show stopped being relevant to me after 1993's performance by Michael Jackson. It became much more irrelevant after Janet Jackson desecrated American eyes with what appeared to be Michael Jackson's face under her shirt. That singular act sent us into halftime show oblivion as the No Fun League trotted out acts old enough sometimes I felt my parents would have to ask their parents for information.

Last year, as the league scoured whatever flea market they find used performers at, they somehow managed to find a band from the aughts that had already managed to become irrelevant.

Apparently Nickelback was unavailable.

04 February 2012

Full of Gas

I don't like to talk politics, like ever. However, I felt compelled the other day to make this poster.

The lapel pin was my wife's idea.
During his State of the State speech, our governor asked our legislature to raise the gasoline tax. That's not a typo up above, either. He's looking for an $.18/gal increase.

03 February 2012

Friday Night Feline: Daisy the Indignant

The other day, as I got up from the couch, I tossed a cushion on to the recliner. I didn't realize there was something occupying the recliner.

Something angry.

02 February 2012

Shakespearean Thursday: Three Little Pigs

A co-worker shared this video on Facebook. I liked it so much that I decided I'd share it here.

01 February 2012

Pretzel Bread Stromboli

Last year, I took my wife to Gettysburg for her birthday, where we ate at a pub that served a ham and cheese on pretzel bread sandwich. I thought this sounded like a great idea, so I learned to make pretzel bread myself.

Recently, the Airport Llama posted that a winter stromboli was coming my way. I like stromboli, as in real stromboli. I know I'll be judged for saying this, but the stuff they sell at Sbarro's is stromboli. There are pizza shops masquerading as pizzerias that sell something they call stromboli but is, in fact, a calzone without sauce.

I found a recipe for stromboli and decided to combine it with the recipe for pretzel bread. Here's the result.