Bryan's Little Corner

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Friday, August 29, 2008

55Flash Fiction Friday

It was an unremarkable
warm summer day

like yesterday
or the day before

But today was my last day

Normally you are so careful
but today you were distracted
A distraction which lead
to my untimely demise

Crayons (and pets and kids)
should never
be left in a car
in the hot heat of summer

I thought this might a little fun. I do not know if you have ever last a crayon or CD/DVD or any number of other things because you left it on the dash of a car, only to have the sun melt it. Now do not get me wrong, the smell of crayon, even melted crayon is wonderful but still, not something you want to do.

But of course even worse is the moronic people that make the news every now and again. The people that leave their children, especially babies, and their pets in a car in the summer. I mean it is bad enough leaving them in a car period but in the summer, so many times it turns out very, very wrong.

Now Susie is the whole reason I went in this direction to begin with. She posted about the new, 96 count Crayola crayon set she got. She pointed out Mac and Cheese is one of the colors. Well, I looked around and found out one of the colors was Electric Lime. I thought it was appropriate to mention this color because not only was it a fun color and it so fit in with what Susie was saying, but it also mentioned “Lime”, one of my favorite bloggers.

The week went on and Susie mentioned the crayons some more including a response from Crayola about which set of crayons contained Electric Lime. It turns out the 96 pack does not contain the crayon but the 120 count pack does.

Well yesterday as I was shopping I found... are you ready for it... a 150 count pack. I looked at the package and could see the Electric Lime crayon in the package although I could not read it’s label. I so had to make this set, the last one they had, my set of crayons.

So now I have a new set of crayons. They not only have the 120 set of crayons but they also have a set of glitter and metallic crayon colors as well. And now, here at last is one of my new crayons. Let me introduce, Electric Lime.

Electric Lime


Thursday, August 28, 2008


I have several different passions in life. One is and will always be music. I played French Horn in band in high school. Well played might be giving me a bit much credit. Still I did enjoy those years. Other than that I mostly just experiment on a keyboard I have. I have always had an ear for music. Other than that I get out a flute I still have every now and then but I never did much with that other than putz. But still for me music has always been important from way back in the 60's until today and it always will be.

Another passion is photography. I got my first cheap camera when I was a young boy, had a film SLR while I was in High School. A second film SLR while in college. A while back (maybe 2000 or 2001) I got my first digital. What amazing freedom to do what I wanted although it was not as good as my film cameras. Then I got a beginners digital SLR and I fell in love. It took great pictures (with my help) and all the shortfalls I had with the first digital were gone. Eventually I got a point and shoot to round me out. Needless to say, I love my cameras and taking pictures of thinks is a passion.

I also have a passion for programming, at least sometimes and that is a good thing as that is what I do for a living. I know, boring geek.

I have a bunch of other things I very much enjoy but those are a few of my favorite things. So how about you?

Sorry this was so short. I had this rant I was going to go on and then I think I found out that I must have some infection on my computer at work that is causing this strangeness. Not a virus but more of an ad thing. I go postal on that today. Thank goodness, not that I use it a lot but it would have meant I would have to removed site meter.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

How old is to old?

I am a weird duck, I know that. I have these things that I believe in that I pretty much will not break. Sometimes I think it is a good thing, other times I think it is just silly. Here is one of my more silly things.

When I was in High School I remember liking girls that was in my class... fine. When I became a senior I found myself liking this freshman. But how could I do that? I mean she was a whole 3 years younger than me. So I never did anything with that which was probably for the best. Fast forward a few years and things continue to be the same.

A little after I turned 40 I noticed things changed a little but you know what, no matter how much things change, sometimes they just do not really change. I noticed that now when I became interested in someone they were typically 9 years younger than me. Again I have had such a hard time with that. That just seems like so many years difference. Of course it does not help that the handful of times I tried to get something going with someone it never really happened.

I found out yesterday that one of these two sisters, twins I believe, that work for the same organization I work for had been married back in May. She was 25, he was 42.. They are 17 years difference in age. I was a little surprised. I guess that would be a hard thing for me to do.

What about you, what do you think? Does age matter? Is there a such thing as to old (or to young) for someone? Or am I just weird? OK, never mind that. We all know I am weird.

Friday, August 22, 2008

55Flash Fiction Friday

So, did you get the text message?
Are you Obama’s choice for VP?

Please, we look like a joke already
and now this?
And McCain isn’t off the hook either.

I say time to settle this. Dueling pistol’s at 50 paces.
The survivor is jailed for bumping off
their opponent

Signed, Ross Perot for President

Just when I think I have seen it all, the stupid campaign for our next president gets more bazaar or just plain old silly. Come on, we have been campaigning for over 2 years and spent millions and millions of dollars and the best we can come up with is McCain and Obama? I am so sick of this entire mess.

Hey, I have an idea. How about Galen for President. Now that I could get behind.

I love following politics usually. It is sad but it is this huge chess game. Politicians promise things that there is no way they could deliver and yet people eat it up. One moment they say something and as soon as it servers them, they promise the opposite. The truth is all that they care about is furthering their party and their own career. If it so happens that it is good for the people too, BONUS.

I think we need to limit the amount of money and time spent on campaigning to something reasonable like 6 weeks campaigning and for heaven sakes cap that financing for the campaigns. Anyway sorry, I just find the need to vent from time to time.

Well this weekend should see the end of my weeds, getting ready for camping next weekend and maybe the Michigan Renaissance festival. The acts are fun but the people watching is even better. Have a wonderful weekend everyone.


Thursday, August 21, 2008

Romantic Poems

I am afraid I am going to be to busy to post anything before Friday so I thought I will post something I got in email...

Are these romantic or what?
These are entries to a competition asking for a rhyme with the most
romantic first line but least romantic second line:

Love may be beautiful, love may be bliss,
But I only slept with you because I was pissed.

I thought that I could love no other
Until, that is, I met your brother.

Roses are red, violets are blue, sugar is sweet, and so are you.
But the roses are wilting, the violets are dead, the sugar bowl's empty, and so is your head.

Of loving beauty you float with grace
If only you could hide your face.

Kind, intelligent, loving and hot
This describes everything you are not.

I want to feel your sweet embrace
But don't take that paper bag off of your face.

I love your smile, your face, your eyes -
Damn, I'm good at telling lies!

My darling, my lover, my beautiful wife:
Marrying you screwed up my life.

I see your face when I am dreaming
That's why I always wake up screaming.

My lover, you take my breath away
What have you stepped in to smell this way?

My feeling for you no words can tell
Except for maybe "go to hell."

What inspired this amorous rhyme?
Two parts vodka, one part lime

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Junk Mail

I know we all hate to get junk mail. You go to the mailbox and there you have bills (the ugliest form of junk mail) and real junk mail. I mean how many times does that credit card company need to send an application to me anyway? No I am not looking to buy a new car and for heaven sakes would the politicians just GO AWAY!

Many, many years ago I was on the other side of the mailbox. I worked for a market research firm. We did lots of things but some of our most prominent things we did was research people that had just bought a new car to see how happy they were with the experience and the car. Also we did a lot of political research. That included all forms of things including walk lists, mailings, get out to vote, exit polling, signature validation on petition drives, you name it. Some of our stuff was done with phone surveys but a lot of what we did also made use of “junk mail.”

Well here I am again, this time working for a cause. The group is trying to get a membership drive going for child abuse prevention so they can carry on their programs. The group is trying to get out a 3,000+ piece mailing. Now that does not sound real terrible but in reality it is a bunch of work.

To help offset costs they have many pieces of paper that are going into each flyer. The workers need to gather all the pieces of paper, put the outside mailer paper on that has the groups information and also the mailing permit number on it, and fold things in half. Then comes a staple to hold the flyer together. But of course a staple is a bad thing for post office automation machines. So the next step is to take one of those tiny return address labels and cover up the staple. Why a return address label? Well it is about the cheapest and easiest thing to use. Then comes the job I was doing, peel off the mailing label and stick it on the flyer.

Of course nothing is as simple as it seems. The mailing was expected to contain on zip code. This is important because with such a good size mailing they are getting a discount in postage based on the fact that the zip codes are pre-sorted. Well only having one zip code is pre-sorted, right? So I went through all the labels and picked out the ones from a different zip code, applied those labels to a flyer and set them aside for who ever to deal with them.

Next I went crazy with laying out the flyers, pealing the labels off and affixing them. I was going along like a mad man, peel, stick... peel, stick, etc. And then, after a bit of work... I had one blank page that used to contain 30, yes only 30 labels. Boy talk about time consuming. I have put in just over 4 hours of work on this project and have probably only done about 20 percent of the mailing. Add to that the going on 5 hours of work each my two friends that talked me into helping out with this cause have done and we have legitimately done 20 percent of the mailing. I sure hope they have a lot more help because this all needs to be done by the end of the month.

Then comes the fun. They need to introduce the 3000+ piece mailing to the post office. I remember how much the post office LOVES it when you do that. If you have not followed the protocols to the letter the entire mailing will be rejected. Also it does not help that the protocol changes depending on who you introduce the mailing through. Or you may get a much higher percentage of undeliverable than is normal. Of course being a non profit organization they have to account for everything including pieces of mail that were not delivered.

I sure wish this group well on their worthy cause but I must say, I am glad I am no long in the “junk mail” business. I get enough of it, I sure do not need to contribute to the mess.

Friday, August 15, 2008

55Flash Fiction Friday

In his mind he’s still 18 or maybe 20 something
But his body rudely reminds him of reality.

What used to be no big deal is now a major chore.
Funny, when did they start sealing those jars so tight?
And when did that type become so darn small?

It can’t be I’m getting old.

That was a 55Flash Fiction Friday. If you would like to give it an attempt go visit G-Man. I am sure he can fill you in. Basically you are coming up with a story in 55 words. It has at least one character and a plot and away you go. Some people do absolutely incredible things with their 55. Anyway you post that baby up Friday, hopefully early and go visit G-Man to let him know so he can make the rounds and so can everyone else.

Oh my goodness. Sometimes I feel like I am so old. Take yesterday for instance. When I got home from work I went outside and spent the next 3 hours sitting on my driveway. Sitting because there was no was I could stand that entire time bent over working on the driveway. I was pulling all the weeds out of the cracks in the cement trying to get ready to caulk the cracks.

When I was done fussing with the weeds I went to get up. I was crippled. My hips both were killing me. Getting up was a chore. Heck even walking was a chore. I know I have seen 80 or 90 year olds that are in better shape. I could not get comfortable when I came inside and decided to go to sleep early but no, I had to watch Women’s Beach Volleyball and of course Swimming and Gymnastics.

I was dog tired when I went to bed, so tired in fact that I started to shiver. When I get over tired like that I have learned that if I put my head under the covers for a little while the shivers go right away. Of course than, after the shivers went away I found it difficult to get comfortable from the aches of my grueling 3 hours sitting down outside. This morning I still feel it, just not as bad.

So when did I get old? Heck, who am I kidding? Look at my High School Senior picture from yesterday and then look at my Profile Picture from about 3 years ago. It has been a few years for sure. Now not that I am complaining. I just need to wrap my mind around it. Well that and if I could just take off come of the weight and work on a bit more I know that would help tons. But getting motivated is sometimes a chore in itself hence all the weeding I am having to do.

So what can I do to feel young again? I know G-Man seemed to be energized by his reunion he just came back from but mine is not for some time. There is camping over labor day. The theme this year is Toga, I hope I look OK in a sheet. The food theme this year is Greek. Say now that is something I can do. I need to figure out what Greek dishes I am going to learn how to do, hopefully something I will not poison everyone with. I know Greek salad could not be that bad and I would love to give avgolemono (Greek Egg-Lemon soup) a try. It sounds like baklava is a bit of work but if I could pull that off I know it would be a hit. Yes, a little cooking might just get my mind off of getting older.

Gee, do Greeks like to drink? Maybe I need to get some wine for this weekend... Speaking of weekends, everyone have a wonderful weekend as we all know we live for our weekends.


Thursday, August 14, 2008

Mama Mia/Slice of Barman

The other day I went to see a movie, Mama Mia. I know, chick flick big time but I can do chick flicks as long as they don’t go all romance novel on me. It is also a musical and what can I say, I love musicals. Now they are strange, standing right next to someone and you want to say something to them so what do you do? Why break out in song and dance of course.

Anyway part way through I found my self bopping to the songs and generally just having a great old time. Yep I was really into the show. Even my theater that, does not have the best sound in the world, and has a small screen was working for me and then it happened.

Here I was having a wonderful time to DISCO music. Back in the late 70's/early 80's I could not stand disco music. It seemed so mindless. It had a heavy beat so you could dance to it and all it did was give me a headache. I even joined a group that was basically for fun, but I still joined. It was called D.R.E.A.D. which stood for Detroit Rockers Engaged in the Abolition of Disco. I still have my card kicking around somewhere I suspect. I did find a picture of one from the Internet so let me share that here.

Anyway we were sworn to appose disco. Here I was going against what all the group stood for. OK, so that group was a long time ago and you know what, I like disco a whole lot more than some of the stuff that is considered music these days. So I guess it is not all that bad but ... IT WAS DISCO ... IT WAS HORRIBLE. (I had to do that in case anyone was looking)

Anyway this movie is not for everyone. Most men folk should run away and some women folk along with them. But if you enjoy musicals, if you like disco, if you like chick flicks... I think it is a pretty good movie.

Luckily tomorrow is Friday so I will do a 55 Flash Fiction Friday and not bore you with my exciting evening yesterday, affixing address labels to a mailing this non profit group is trying to send out. Fun stuff here...

Oh and in honoring something I saw over at Limes ... here is my High School senior picture for a slice of Barman.


Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Tim Barron is Back - 2008

OK, let me explain but I will keep it short. Do you have a radio station or even an on air personality you listen to all the time? Well for me that person would be Tim Barron. He runs a morning show and he is not for everyone. A matter of fact most people could care less about him. Still others think he is a jerk but he does have his following too.

Some people just want to hear music when they tune in on the radio. I admit most of the time I am right there with you, but the morning to me is a different time, a special time. During this time I like to have something that eases me into the day. News is a must. Of course I also like to get a little more than just news and weather. For one thing what is going on in our local community. Also, I have gotten very used to hearing some of the news stories that do not always make the news. Toss in traffic information, get some of the listeners involved, maybe even toss in some contests but those are not important to me. Oh and have some music in there too but to me the emphasis is more on the news and the personality. Sorry, I got hooked on this type of format back when I lived in the Detroit area and was so glad to find something similar here where I am now.

For over 10 years I have been listing to Mr Barron’s morning show on three separate stations, soon to be four. I am excited to hear he is coming soon to the air waves of 92.1.

Let me end this boring post (to most) by saying yea, the headache went away. And now here is a miniature collage I was working on yesterday. It sure could use some work but it was a fun first attempt. I hope you enjoy.

Fly High


Monday, August 11, 2008

Mr Grumpy Buckets

Oh what a fun weekend. I spent part of it dealing with a headache that would not go away. I think it was because of the big change in weather in Michigan. We dropped about 15 degrees over the last several days. That led to me playing on the computer a little but mostly watching a bot of the Olympics.

Might I say, I think I am rapidly having my share of the Olympics. I am curious to see how Phelps does on his quest for 8 Olympic Gold medals this year. I am a little bit turned off on the scoring on the gymnastics events. It is obvious the judges are not judging even and fair. Hey, maybe I can find some of the equestrian events ...

I did manage to get most of the weeding done but I do need to bag all of it. The edging is done up front and the grass is cut. Given another day or two and the property will be all spiffed back up. Any suggestions for perennials that I can plant that love well drained sandy soil and at least partial shade? I suspect I will be planting some of those lovely orange lilies as long as they get along with iris’s alright. Ah and shrubs. There is a 40 percent off sale. Time to go shrub hunting. Soon it may even look like someone lives here.

Well that was my mini update. Not a lot of words but a fair amount of work happened behind the scenes. It’s about time.

I hope you have a much more fun weekend than I did.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

When it Comes to Summer Olympics...

I know I am a pig and here is why. I don’t watch tons of the Olympics but I do have my favorites none the less. My favorite summer Olympics sport is Woman’s Beach Volleyball. See, I told you! Other then the obvious, they look fantastic in their uniform, I also love volleyball and find this 2 on 2 volleyball amazing. I could not even imagine the energy it takes to do what they do. They are incredible athletes for sure.

OK, other than that sport I also enjoy gymnastics, go figure. It is amazing to see what the men and women can do. Sometimes graceful, sometimes in total control making something look so easy even when you know they are not.

I also enjoy track and field although I do not catch a lot of it. Saturday as I took a few breaks from trying to get my landscape under control, I managed to take in some of the swimming events. Again absolutely incredible. The energy and the strategy is amazing. And when you notice that the difference between first and third is usually under 2 seconds, sometimes under a second you can not afford to do anything that even only loses a fraction of a second.

I am so proud of all of the athletes. Speaking of all, I so actually mean all, even those from other countries. I find that if there is someone from the United States I will pull for them. But when I see another country putting in an incredible performance I can not help but get all behind them and all excited to see them win. I am very impressed with how China has been performing. Talk about dominating mens gymnastics.

Now I may watch other events too but there is one strange one that I really enjoy. Well at least you would think it strange. I love the equestrian events. Well all except the dressage. I can only take so much of that before I just need to turn the channel. Other than that however I really enjoy the sport.

Well that is how I spent my Saturday and probably how I will spend my Sunday. What can I say, I let my landscape really go this year and I am trying to get the yard back into shape. I am close to getting the edging done, weeding should get done tomorrow if the picker bushes leave me alone. Cut the lawn and weed and feed it. Yep, busy Sunday but it will feel good. Got to take advantage of the good weather when you can.

I hope you are having a nice weekend.

Friday, August 01, 2008

55Flash Fiction Friday

“Tickets please” you say as
the next person in line steps up.
You separate the tickets and
point them in the right direction.

You thought this job would be fun
but now you can not wait
for your next job.
To be a candy counter person
would be the best

The grass is always greener

It is funny, you can always look at what someone else has and envy them. But no matter where you are, no matter what you do there is always pluses and minuses for everything. To raise a family would be incredible. To see children grown and become their own little person would be so rewarding. But at the same time the life of the single. Not tied down, free to do anything you want any where you want. It just never ends.

What we all need to do is try and be thankful for what we do have. If we can do that than, at least in some small way, we will have and even better life to live.

You know I am not even sure where all that came from but I guess it really wanted to get out. Everyone have a wonderful weekend. I know I have a couple of little things planned and I think, short of problems with misquotes, I will have a wonderful time.

The above has been a Flash Fiction Friday. It is 55 words (more or less) that contains a plot and a character at least. The are fun and easy to do. If you would like to give it a try go see G-Man from my side bar as he is the keeper at the moment. Give it a try...

... Always look on the bright, side of life... (Gotta love that song from the Life of Brian)