Bryan's Little Corner

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Friday, March 31, 2006

My Thursday Night Project

In preperation for the Michigan Bloggers gathering Friday I made some Jello Shots. Now normally I just add Vodka and different colored Jello and off I go. This time I decided to get a little more creative. Here is the setup.

First I thought I would try Fuzzy Navel Jello Shots. It is funny I came up with the idea of this combination before I went online and found it there. It seems to be one of the most popular ones too. It is Orange Jello and Peach Schnapps. About 60 percent of what I made was Fuzzy Navel Jello Shots. I sure hope they turned out well.

And here is the finished results before puting the lid on, placing them in containers and putting then in the fridge to set up. The red ones are Cherry Jello and Captain Morgan Silver Spiced Rum. The tea and coke colored ones are Green Apple Jello and Hot Damn! This is somewhere between 260 and 270 Jello Shots. Should be interesting.

These are not the most potent shots. The Cherry ones are probably 38 proof or so with the rest is about 16 proof. Now Sign Gurl made some shots too with the good stuff and her shots are probably about 45 proof or a bit higher. I can't wait to actually meet Sign Gurl, Roxi, BTExpress and many others. Well that and sample Sign Gurls booty (her Jello Shots ...). Well off to get a little sleep before going to work and ... party time. I hope to see a few of you there.

Well, I heard you were having a party and I wasn't invited, so naturally I just grabbed my purse and ran right over. --The 5 Mrs. Buchanans

Sunday, March 26, 2006

What Did I Do?

Why did I do it? What was I thinking? Will it stop hurting?

OK, so I am so out of shape and such a wimp. All I was trying to do was a little lawn work. My lawn is not that big. It is just about 1/4 acer. So why can't I care for it without wiping myself out? OK, I know the answer. I am more than a few pounds over weight and not very active so that is the reason but wow.

I started out wanting to cut the grass and put some crabgrass killer/feed on. But did I do that? Of course not.

Instead I rented a power rake to remove thatch and then I had to pick up all the thatch. This is simular to the torture device I rented.

Luckily the power rake is not to hard to use but still it did take a bit out of me.

Next I used a sweeper to get up the thatch and that was a trip. I think it was a lot easier than raking but it still was crazy. I discovered that if I just walk along with the sweeper it would pick up the thatch but it will need me to stop after taking one or two passes across the lawn. Another one or two passes and I had to empty it into the flower bed. I then discovered that if I ran with the sweeper I could actually pick up a bunch of thatch without stopping. I still could only get about 4 passes before I had to empty it. But the bad part is running with this thing was realling wearing me out. I really need to get back to the gym.Well I had to take a break and was not able to finish the lawn before it was pitch black. I guess morning I will finish it before work and get the crabgrass killer on tomorrow evening. It feels good to be getting this done but, oh my, I so need to get back to working out.
I hope everyone had a nice weekend.

How's the yard work going boys? --Stella Shorts

Sunday, March 19, 2006

How I spent my weekend

Well actually I would not do that to you. It was way to boring. I did go see Firewall. It was OK but not the best movie I have seen.

My high point for the weekend, other than March Madness and being tied for first on one pool and in forth in the other ... well it involved this:

You are looking at the pump assembly of my washing machine. I took the machine apart and discovered this part was leaking like crazy. After spending a lot of time online I found the part and ordered one. I was busy ever since that time and without a washing machine. So this weekend I took the machine apart and removed the pump assembly and, after a little strugling with replacing it and a lot of cleaning up water when I was trying to make sure there was no leaking, I finally have a working washing machine. I have now put through 7 loads of laundry which is something for someone living alone.

Well here is the part that almost made me buy a new machine. Now I would love to get one, preferably one of those front loaders, but I want to do it on my own time.

Yea, lifes simple pleasures are sometimes the best. I hope your weekend went at least as well.

Oh, no! We're flooding! This damn water pump keeps going out. --Strong Medicine

Friday, March 17, 2006

I Got a Fever

I got a fever and the only perscription is more cowbell

Well actually, I do have a fever but not for more cowbell. I do love that Saturday Night Love skit however even more than bass-o-matic.

The fever I have is for March Madness. It is funny, I do not follow basketball. I probably only watch 6 games throught the year but... but Mach Madness is different. This year I entered two pools. Will I win? Hey I am just happy if I do not finish last. To me I just enjoy how quickly all the games go by and love tracking the results. Many years I had a spread sheet that predicted how people were doing and what was the best they could do. Now, CBS Sportsline does that for me. Now my spreadsheet did a little more than that but it was a lot of work to set up so I am happy not to have to do it.

So far I was winning in one pool and tied in the other for like 5 seconds. Now I am middle of the pack and probably sinking fast. That is OK but I am doing this just for fun. If I were to try and win I probably would not win and I would not enjoy myself.

Other than that I have been spending to much time online so I have been trying to back that up and hopefully get to bed at a reasonable time. Of course March Madness is not helping.

I thought I would stop by and wish everyone a nice weelend.

I must admit I find this all a bit mystifying. Do people really care this much about a basketball game? --Frasier

Sunday, March 12, 2006

A Prayer Away From Healing

I first discovered fellow blogger Deb by comments she left for other people on their blogs. She seemed like a super person so I followed her back to her blog and was I glad I did.

Deb has always been interesting, inspiring, and entertaining. She makes me think about things, often times in a different way than I have before. Somehow because of how open she is I felt an instant connection to her. I instantly added a link to her because I knew she is someone I needed to keep checking up on.

When I found out she was writing a book I could not wait for it to be published. Well It finally happened about a week ago...

Deb is now a published author

I have a copy on the way but, because the publisher prints on demand and I wanted an actual book, not an eBook, it will be a little while before I receive my copy. The excerpt I read makes me anxious for her book to arrive.

Below is some information from Deb about her book and a link should you be interested in checking it out.

Deb, I just wanted to say how very proud I am of you. Good luck with your book and your next book that you have in the works.

Get a copy of my book, "A Prayer Away From Healing". It’s a Christian-based inspirational book about my life and how God helped me through certain trials. It deals with break ups, forgiveness, relationships, anxiety, depression, self-esteem issues and how to love others unconditionally. It shows that even though we will never be perfect; God’s love for us will always be. It focuses on not judging others; to let God be the only judge. To get an e-book or a hard cover, please visit this site, go to the online bookstore and type in, “A Prayer Away From Healing” to get your copy!

(Part 4 - Hooligans)

I should have known they were expecting trouble when I saw the O'Paddy wagon go by. They did not let me down.

Why is it that you can not go anywhere without there being trouble. I mean this is a fairly small town. It makes me wonder if I should keep going to this town for other things like I do.

Look at them. They look all incocent and all. You would never suspect what was to come. You would think parents would watch over their kids a little better.

They even had McGruff the Crime Dog on hand to help police things. Yes sir, they must of had problems in the past.

By the end of the parade they had the hooligans in custody. Thank goodness the problems happened across the street so I was not directly involved. These were some very badly behaved kids for sure.

More kids that were locked up. Not being a parent I had no idea you had to worry about kids like that, especially at that age.

This is the second group of kids they had cooling their heals. What happened at the begining of the parade that I missed. I best tune into the news and find out. You would never have guessed it by looking at them.

Well all and all it was a fun time. I think I need to plan to spend half the day down there next year and partake in the Irish Stew tasting, some Irish brew, entertainment and more despite the hooligans.

Shenanigans? Well, just come out and say it, Henry. You think I'm a hooligan, don't ya? Up to some tomfoolery. --Stark Raving Mad

(Part 3 - Misc)

When I saw this person at the parade (in the center in green) I thought of Deb. Looking at her now I realize she is not as cute as Deb is.

Jungle Jane, should you stop by ... bigger or smaller?

It's unlike me to pick on someone but I just could not help but think this. They do say that after a while pets and their owners start to look a like. When I looked at the pictures I found out there was actually two St. Bernards in the parade although you can not see it here. This is a new one on me for a parade.

Wow, while I was at the parade this chick was hitting on me. You see that ... call me. I just know that is what she is doing. Or is this bull sh*t? Well either way she got away before I could get her phone number.

I think I have mentioned before that my car was old. I stopped buying new cars a long time ago. It is embarrasing how old the car is. Here is a picture of my car...

Well that is the end of the normal parade pictures. I did see a rowdy group at the parade. I saved them for the fourth installment.

Shoes! We're playing for shoes. (They take off their shoes) My seventy dollar aligators against his Irish clogs after 15 St. Patrick's Day parades. -- Laughter on the 23rd floor

Saturday, March 11, 2006

(Part 2 - Bagpipes)

In Michigan, or at least this part of Michigan it seems like no event and certainly no parade would be complete with bagpipes. This is the first group. I do enjoy bagpipes except when they are plaed indoors and they can be defening.

This is one of the better pictures of the bagpipers. I had more (I took about 150 pictures at the parade) but I will not bore you with it any more than I have. I thought having the drum with the name in the picture was good and I love the red hair for this shot. Kind of appropriate I think.

This guy was very classy looking. I loved how he snapped to all his moves. He was a highlight of the groups. I think I see a ring ... sorry ladies.

Hey I am only human. I thought she was cute.

The bagpipes were really fun. Nothing says a parade like bagpipes and men in skirts ... ummm, wait a minute. I think I will need to do this parade again next year. It is short, about 30 minutes. Parking is not bad and there is the theater I go to there and a resteraunt/bar that I go to sometimes near by. Yes, life is good.


Ooh, it's been St. Patrick's Day for hours, and I'm still not drunk yet. --The Simpsons

Happy St Patrick's Day (in 4 parts)

This afternoon I went to a St Patrick's Day parade in a town near by. No Michigan has not changed when St Patrick's Day is. I think they just start the celebrating early. This was my first St Pat's parade.

Some people turned out for it but then again there are only about 6000 people in this town to begin with. Probably 2/3 of the people had on some form of green. I am sure the rest had green underwear on. Here is an example of what people had on. I think I need to get one of those shaggy green things to call my very own.

Here is the mandatory shot of the banner that started the parade after the police car.

Of course what St Patrick's Day celebration would be complete without beer flowing somewhere? This ingenous parade had a bar complete with tappers as one of the floats. My kind of parade!

Here we have one of the simpler floats they had. It looks like something you could buy at Wallmart or Meijer. Since it showed a Lepricon, I just needed to include it.

This group was entertaining later that night I believe. It said The Capitol Area Blues Society on the banner in back of them. I think I need to check out where else they are playing, they were pretty good.

Editor: c-mo provided a link to Irish-American facts if you are interested. Thank you.


Yeah, it was a few years ago on St. Patrick's Day. I was bombed on green beer, and she was as cute as a damn leprechaun. --That '80s Show

Friday, March 10, 2006

Strange Day

What an unusual day today was. I was minding my own business going to lunch today as I do on Fridays and what do I find but a naked lady. Interesting way to protest but it really did not get it's point across. Yes I looked but just moved on by. Boy why didn't I watch the movie What Do You Say to a Naked Lady? so I knew what to do? :) By the way I have never done a WTF Wednesday as Madame X does and this is not Wednesday but I think this might be a good candidate.

I got to thinking what other strange things has this group done. Now I found some sick things that they have done and continue to do but one of the strangest things I found was caged mostly naked women pose painted up as cats. It appears that they were protesting the men do not eat pussy enough. OK, that could be a worth while cause but what an odd ball group.

An amazing discovery today: A drawing of a naked lady found at the bottom of the ocean. Sources close to the drawing say, "Not only is she Nekkid, but she ain't wearing any clothes, too." --Thumbtanic

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Humor: King Arthur and the Witch

Young King Arthur was ambushed and imprisoned by the monarch of a neighboring kingdom. The monarch could have killed him but was moved byArthur's youth and ideals. So, the monarch offered him his freedom, as long as he could answer a very difficult question. Arthur would have a year tofigure out the answer and, if after a year, he still had no answer, he would be put to death.

The question?....What do women really want? Such a question would perplex even the most knowledgeable man, and to young Arthur, it seemed an impossible query. But, since it was better than death, he accepted the monarch's proposition to have an answer by year's end.

He returned to his kingdom and began to poll everyone: the princess, the priests, the wise men and even the court jester. He spoke with everyone, but no one could give him a satisfactory answer.

Many people advised him to consult the old witch, for only she would have the answer.

But the price would be high; as the witch was famous throughout the kingdom for the exorbitant prices she charged.

The last day of the year arrived and Arthur had no choice but to talk to the witch. She agreed to answer the question, but he would have to agree toher price first.

The old witch wanted to marry Sir Lancelot, the most noble of the Knights of the Round Table and Arthur's closest friend!

Young Arthur was horrified. She was hunchbacked and hideous, had only one tooth, smelled like sewage, made obscene noises, etc. He had neveren countered such a repugnant creature in all his life.

He refused to force his friend to marry her and endure such a terrible burden; but Lancelot, learning of the proposal, spoke with Arthur.

He said nothing was too big of a sacrifice compared to Arthur's life and the preservation of the Round Table.

Hence, a wedding was proclaimed and the witch answered Arthur's question thus:

What a woman really wants, she to be in charge of her own life.

Everyone in the kingdom instantly knew that the witch had uttered a great truth and that Arthur's life would be spared.

And so it was, the neighboring monarch granted Arthur his freedom and Lancelot and the witch had a wonderful wedding.

The honeymoon hour approached and Lancelot, steeling himself for a horrific experience, entered the bedroom. But, what a sight awaited him. The most beautiful woman he had ever seen lay before him on the bed. The astounded Lancelot asked what had happened.

The beauty replied that since he had been so kind to her when she appeared as a witch, she would henceforth, be her horrible deformed self only half the time and the beautiful maiden the other half.

Which would he prefer? Beautiful during the day....or night?

Lancelot pondered the predicament. During the day, a beautiful woman to show off to his friends, but at night, in the privacy of his castle, an old witch? Or, would he prefer having a hideous witch during the day, but by night, a beautiful woman for him to enjoy wondrous intimate moments?

What would YOU do?

What Lancelot chose is below. BUT....make YOUR choice before you scroll down below. OKAY?

Noble Lancelot said that he would allow HER to make the choice herself.

Upon hearing this, she announced that she would be beautiful all the time because he had respected her enough to let her be in charge of her own life.

Now....what is the moral to this story?

The moral is.....
If you don't let a woman have her own way....
Things are going to get ugly

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

One of my passions

I am afraid I must have burnt out a little as the last several days not only have I not posted much but I also have not been visiting everyone’s blogs like I enjoy. In an effort to ease myself back into this I thought I would share some of what I have been doing over the last several days.

I have the itch again. Normally I am the kind of person that if I have something that is working I wait until it breaks before I will buy something new. A classic example, I had a 19 Hitachi TV that had developed problems but was basically working. It was not until it finally died that I went out and got a nice 27 Sony. I wanted a different TV for some times but no, the one I had was fine.

Well it would appear that only partially applies with cameras. I seem to have this love affair with the camera. I remember having some sort of camera when I was real young and opening the back of the camera to look at the film. Hey, I was always curious. Anyway, despite doing this with low light it still did not help the film out any.

My first serious camera was a Minolta. I had this camera in part of grade school and in High School and still have it although I do not use it anymore. I took this camera to Europe when I went with the High School band in the summer of '73. I had this camera when I took pictures of several float parties including the 1972 float party that we built Raggedy Ann and Andy for the theme "Through the Eyes of a Child." I took a lot of pictures. Most of which were slides. I developed my own style. I loved the candid pictures rather then posed pictures. I got pretty good at it. People hated to have their pictures taken but enjoyed seeing them when I got the pictures back.

Sometime after graduation High School I added another camera. I bought a Canon AE-1. What a great camera. I certainly made use of that for lots of things including scenery. But it did not end there. I just had to add a nice lense. I purchased a 70-210 zoom. Now this was not a canon lense but I did not care.

I had several problems with the lense that I just learned to adjust to. First it could only do a f4.0 which means I did not do real well in low light situations. Other things that bothered me include the settings on the lense itself were not real convenient and did not lock in well. It was not uncommon for me to slip off of the setting I thought I was on and spoil the pictures I was taking.

I needed a better flash, especially for the candid pictures I enjoyed. I bit the bullet and got a potato masher. Now that is not what it was called heard people call it that different places. I think I was being influence by my friend who was taking wedding pictures on the side. I bought a Sunpak 611. With this I could shoot pictures at 50 or 60 feet away and it turned out great. It complimented my zoom lense well. Now I feel sorry for the people that I must have given sunburn to when taking long distance pictures and they were standing near buy. Other than how heavy it was, I love that flash.

Well I had the itch again. Everything was working well. I had even added a auto winder to the mix so I could take pictures faster. Sometimes that really came in handy for the candid shots that I continued to love. But this was not enough. I ended up adding a Canon A1 body to the mix. It was a nice camera and I so enjoyed it. I could share the lenses with the AE-1 also, how nice. I think some of what it did for me is allow me to have more than one camera with different lenses and even different film some times. This helped with times when my zoom lense was to much for a few pictures I wanted to take although the rest were OK with the lense. Also sometimes I was in a sticky situation where the ASA 400 film I was using was just to much and I needed a slower film. This happened some times when I was doing scenery shoots.

At one point I entertained taking wedding pictures. I had gotten pretty good at taking pictures at weddings. Afterwards I put together a small album and gave that as a gift to the couple. I was having a good time with this until the incident. I set my camera incorrect. It was not syncing up with the flash. I found this out when I got onto the 4th roll of film. I feared the results and my fear was justified. I have very lovely pictures of peoples FEET as the shutter closed just as the flash was doing it’s thing. So I ended up with one roll of film that was OK. I was so disappointed and ended my thoughts right then of taking pictures of weddings other than just causally. Besides, I compliment wedding pictures more that anything. I get the candid shots you never get from the professionals. I would have forced myself to do the posed shots but I know they would not have been as good as other people could take anyway.

Well, as it turned out that incident also started to turn me off of picture taking all together. That and how much people really hated to have their picture taken. I went for a long time and hardly took pictures. When I did, sometimes I even got one of those disposable cameras since it was easier. Sometimes I would not develop the film even. I was in a slump but all that would end when I finally did it. I bought a digital camera, a Fuji S602 Zoom camera. It was amazing, it was fun. I could easily take 100 pictures without even thinking about it. I loved being able to see the pictures I just took and make adjustments. I was enjoying taking pictures again. That brings us to today.

I still am having a good time but there is a problem. This camera is no where near as nice as the Canon cameras I have but I can not bring my self to use a film camera except in rare instances. The wonderful pictures I got at weddings were just OK. I could not see to properly frame pictures and the auto focus was not a lot of help in the dark. Of course I could not manual focus either because of the dark. I noticed that when I take pictures at dance recitals, which is something I have done a lot of, the pictures were always blurry as I could not use flash and everything was moving. Outdoor shorts were super with the camera but it just could not do the type of shots that I seem to do a lot of. Even the indoor shots of my niece playing basketball or cheerleading were blurry unless I was careful how I took the pictures. So I got that itch again and started looking. That is part of what I have been doing. My cousin, brother and bother-in-law all got new cameras in the last few years. They got a Canon Digital Rebel XT. This camera alone goes a long ways to correcting the problems I have with digital camera. It turns on in 2 tenths of a second. It hardly has a delay like most digital cameras have so you do not need to lead pictures as much as I have had to or to play tricks with the camera to take the picture faster. The pictures that you turn out are very nice and this is a 8 meg camera meaning I can do almost anything I could do with the film camera except possibly blowing up pictures to poster size.

The Rebel was part of my answer but there was more to the equation that I did not figure out until my BIL got his Canon zoom lense, the lense. Oh my what a sweet lense. It could zoom between 70 and 200 which I really like the range. What made it sweet is it did this at F2.8 continuos. At last a lense that provided the zoom ability but also allowed much lower light situations. Pictures in the gym are a snap and very clear. Pictures are clear that used to be blurry. I am sure the recital pictures would be much improved also if not perfect. I really love that lense and that camera. Of course the down side is the camera costs little more than I would like to spend but I will manage. The lense, however, is much more than the camera. Now it is worth it but oh my gosh that will hurt. So I have been looking around for deals. Mail order places I think I can trust, ebay, you name it. Hay everyone needs a hobby.

Well sorry for the long boring post and I am very impressed if you made it this far. You get a gold star for sure.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

What an Awesome Day

What an awesome day in my little corner of the world. The squirrels are chasing each other through the trees, the birds are chirping which I do not believe I have heard much of at all this winter. The sun is out nice and strong and has melted a lot of snow and boy does it feel nice and warm. Today has sping written all over it.

Of course it is only just above freezing but still you feel like it will be time for everything to start greening up soon and time to plant flowers and vegetables for the new year. Of course it is still at least a month and a half off but today promises a better time coming soon. So is it really all that nice out or is it just me. Either way, what an awesome day.

Greetings, Cicely, on this most exceedingly beautiful spring morning. A morning swollen with new life, a morning on which, if I had the voice, I would let loose with song. It's hard to believe just a few short weeks ago we were eating our cornflakes in the wintry dark. Now, well it's still kind of dim our there, but I can see the golden glow of Apollo's chariot waiting in the wings, about to make its entrance. Winter's on the lam, no doubt. --Northern Exposure

Showing Some Community Support

I have been one for causes, doing something because it is the right thing to do. Well this week was no exception to that.

A restaurant in the area is in trouble. A lot of people became ill after eating there on the 28th or 29th of January. The culprit, the norovirus. No doubt you remember this nasty virus. At least in Michigan there have been schools sent home for several days to stop the spread of it. Also for a while there were all those people getting sick on the cruise lines and having to come back to port.

In this case it appears it was one to four employees that were ill and still worked since the restaurant did not provide some form of sick time for their employees. One story says the restaurant required the employees to come in to work, another story says that the employees are informed that if they are sick they need to report it and not work. What is the full story, I am sure we will never completely know. At any rate corrective measures have been taken and
they have made it through an uneventful month but the damage has been done. Local media continues to unjustly poke at the restaurant. At one point it was a story that needed to be told, now it is just bad journalism to sell newspapers and get more listeners. Where are all the news articles about all the good this restaurant does for the community? Some people will never go back there. Personally I do not see how they will recover from this.

Last Thursday the local business association and rotary arranged a night to show support for them asking people to come out for dinner. I showed up about 5:30 and enjoyed a wonderful dinner, enjoyable conversation with the bartender who is originally from Traverse City, and twist my arm, several drafts of beer before dashing out to see my latest addiction, American Idol. There were a bunch of other people there for the same reason that night but the restaurant was far from full. I really wish them well and hope this unfortunate incident does not put this one store out of business.

Boy, you file one multi-million dollar claim and all that good neighbor crap just flies out the window. --Married ... With Children

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Chinese Symbol

I saw this over on Wenchy's and thought it sounded like fun.