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Things fall apart...


... actually, the center is holding pretty well. It's the hands that suck. I've managed to totally mess up my hands. I cut the tip off of my left pointer. All of the callouses got ripped off when I went bouldering with the scouts, I tore open the backs of my hands cleaning the gutters and I've got splinters under each fingernail from mulching the front beds.


On the other hand, the heart is good, blood pressure's fine, weight still holding at 195 two months after quitting Weight Watchers, and my penis has grown three inches thanks to a successful bet over fuel economy made with an elderly Gypsy woman.

So, I'm healthy and finally well endowed.


Not only that, but I think that if I pile all the stuff I had in my pockets together with my shoes on a scale, It'd be close to five pounds. Not to mention my new job as a drug mule. Ok, it's not really drugs. I just need a good story in case I get X-rayed.

Anyway. It's been an entire month since I've been on an airplane. Scary. So I've decided to spend all of September on the road. I'll let you all know if I make it.

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This got nine hits last week.

I don't know if it's because the Warrant guy died, or... nope. It's gotta be the Warrant guy dying. I do need to correct the post. Where it says "Aldo Nova" you have to read "Tesla" Spelling and the rest, you can forget about me ever, and I mean ever, correcting.

Other news, I haven't had nine hits on a single post since 2008. I'm currently getting under 20 hits a week. Which is just about nothing and why I noticed that that old post got 9 hits. You know once I was actually getting almost 300 hits per day. That lasted just long enough for me to consider putting ads on this here site. Heh. Heh.........heh... *sob*

I'll freely admit that both the quality and quantity of my posting has hit pretty much rock bottom. This is bad. But still...

Nine? Thirty hits all last week? A 90% bounce rate? 24 comments in what, seven years? I don't even get spammed any more!

OK. I did quit. I admit that. I was getting shit hits back then too, but dear lord!

I think I'll do nothing but post pictures of my penis. I'll dress it in historical costumes.

My Penis
Hmmm.  Maybe that's more of a Tumblr...

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$110 for Desert boots?

Wait... Desert Boots? Don't they know the nuns won't let us wear those to school?

I didn't even search for those. I got the ad while surfing. This means that somewhere I indicated that I was fucking old as dirt and somehow nostalgic for the late seventies or early eighties. I'm not, although it seems much of the government is, as is the Fed and the housing market... but I digress... no, I really don't digress. I was going to buy the Beast a pair of Docksiders for school, because he doesn't want to wear sneakers all the time. $120. For size 7 Docksiders. What the hell. Even at the outlets the damn things are $80! My damn Sperry boatshoes, the Mr. Rogers kind) are out of stock and over $70! Food is insane. We still have $4 gas. But mileage is still $0.55, same as it was when gas was $2.50. Interest rates are historically low, but I can't refinance my house because I'm not in danger of default (I'm not kidding. If I stopped paying my bills I could refinance), not to mention the house is only worth about $200 and change now.

When Skippy was born, maddmom and I decided to do the Dave Ramsey plan. Buy only what you can afford, with cash. If you want something, save up for it. Pay off your debt. Don't use credit cards. Look for deals, plan for retirement. So we did. Guess what?

That backfired.

I should have borrowed every cent I could. Then paid off my credit cards, car loans, vacations, giant TV's, plastic surgery, etc... with a fixed rate home equity loan then defaulted. Maybe I should have gone to one of those "credit counseling services". I should have bought the $400,000 house instead of the $100,000 house. I should have spent $200,000 on home improvements instead of $50,000. I should have been as irresponsible as possible, everyone else was. Hell, I'm paying for it anyway.

I've just about had it.

When I first started working, a friend of mine was looking into starting his own business as a "credit counselor". A nicer version of a collections agent, he figured he would work on a flat rate or percentage, or both. His big idea was student loans.

Back in the day, and I have no idea if this is still true, if a schools student loan default rate went over a certain percent, they lost the ability to provide Pell Grants. Now, a Pell Grant wasn't a lot of money per student, but it went directly into the school's pockets. That was the reason EVERYONE had to fill out a FAFSA, even if they were paying cash. F'rinstance, I knew a handyman making $12k a year working for *insert large hotel chain here* who went to school for free thanks to his company's tuition benefit. Paid in full every semester. Still got $450 in Pell Grant money. That check got signed over at registration or he didn't get in. I don't think he even knew what it was. It was just, "Sign here. Here's your schedule." School administrators counted on that money, and if it was reduced, there would be no Christmas party that year for the staff.

My friend and I worked together in the financial aid office of a well known for profit school that had a pretty high default rate. We spent about a year digging around and trying different things to keep the default rate low. He was the talker, I was the muscle. I built a skip trace database and tracked students who reported no income on their FAFSA and 1040. He called relatives and roommates, employers and old teachers, not as a collection agent, but as a "counselor". He didn't collect money himself, he talked the student into getting in touch with the bank and helped negotiate payment. We had the idea that we could free-lance, get a flat fee from the school per student and maybe a percentage from the guarantors. We never got too far with this. He got promoted and I moved away, direct lending would have killed the percentage anyway, I think. Anyway, I think this is how those counseling rackets work nowadays and I'm sorry I didn't get the jump on them when people actually cared about their credit.

Obviously no one does now if a company can make money selling $100 desert boots. Seriously, I wish I had paid attention when they liquidated all those Army-Navy stores in the 90's.

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Odd day


Dangeresque and I were driving home from Louisville when, from nowhere, we saw a rainbow shoot though the sky...

It seemed to be moving away  as we drove towards it.  As we went North, it went West.  Finally, when we got to to the Sligo exit, it took a sharp jump over the river and looked for all the world like it was sitting right on top of the McMahonsion!

It was!  The rainbow ended right at our front door!  Wouldn't you know it? ( I was shocked too.)  It was seriously bright, at the bottom of it, and all the gold coins around made it really hard to drive through the neighborhood.  I should really think about getting a four wheel drive.

When we finally got close enough to the house to get a good view of the whole scene, I noticed what looked like a crowd of people milling around.  That pissed me off, let's face it, if a rainbow ends at your front door, your neighbors should have the courtesy to keep their hands off  the gold.  Seriously.  Or at least check to see if you're on vacation before they rip you off.  That's what I do.  I never steal my neighbor's paper unless I'm sure he's golfing or in the office that day.  Anyway, it wasn't the neighbors, when I got closer I could tell that whatever it was milling around and tearing up my lawn, it wasn't full size.

There were masses of freaked out leprechauns all over the front of the house. 

So many, in fact, that I had to park all the way at the end of my driveway, which was choked with miniature carts and donkeys.   Miniature donkeys, by the way, must eat like regular donkeys, because they shit like nobody's business. Getting out of the car, Dangeresque and I had to use my jumper cables like bullwhips just to clear a walkway up to the garage.

Unsurprisingly one of my other kids had left the garage door wide open and the little green leprechaun bastards had already raided my beer fridge.

Now, drunk or sober, a freaked out leprechaun isn't to be trifled with, and unfortunately for Dangeresque, leprechauns are extremely sensitive to any slight on their size.  You see, Dangeresque's voice is changing and every third word comes out as a chipmunk-y squeak.  I heard him say, "Would you excuse me, please?" to the group of surly midgets blocking the door to the house, and all hell broke loose.  The last I saw of him were his giant sneakers sticking out from under a pile of tiny cast iron pots.  I was close enough to the workbench that I was able to grab my trusty DeWalt drill (still had the hole saw on it from the weekend) and keep most of the lilliputian brutes at arm's length.  I received a nasty bruise on the back of my head when one of the little ginger freaks started chucking bottles at me from the recycle bin, but I managed to get through the door otherwise unharmed.  Two minutes later I discovered the reason for the tiny riot in my garage...

The king of the leprechauns had laid an egg.
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FIrst day of school yesterday


Schmutz on the phone, but you get the idea.

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I looked in the mirror today...

and saw this...

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We visit NYC...



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Post vacation reality vaccination

I'm going to pretend I'm still on vacation. A good vacation, too. It's not that I had a bad vacation, I had a great vacation, I just want to vacate my house and go back on vacation and vacation in a really nice vacation destination. Like say... I don't know, someplace nice.

Today the Prince got his driver's license. He's the man, now. I will now begin the decline common to all men who have kids who drive. I will begin to forget how to do it. First, I will begin to go slow, then I will grow out my ear hair enough that I will no longer hear the "ticka-ticka-ticka" of my turn signals. I will eventually buy a Toyota. I will be unable to make a right turn without coming to a full stop, and I will drive around aimlessly during the day, listening to minor league baseball and traffic reports from far-off cities, looking for a hardware store, barber shop or bakery that's been closed for years. (You know, Milt had the heart right after his wife had the cancer. His kids came back to clean out the place and they thought Tommy would take over, but his wife was from up north and didn't want to leave her big house. I heard he was in insurance, too. You know, you can make a good living as a baker, but you have to get up early. Kids these days don't want to do that. I'm sure Tommy would've... he was a good kid, he worked concessions at the park summers... basketball player. Nope, too short. Had some heft to him too... not much of a jumper. She's no shrinking violet either, I saw them at church last Easter. She was letting the kids have it in the parking lot. The oldest was on the phone the whole service! In my day we would've been humiliated...) Soon my legs will atrophy and I'll end up on one of those scooters, drifting aimlessly through Wal-Mart looking for plumber's putty and bacon bits.

Before I do that though, I've got to get the kids ready for school. Maddmom has a new job, the kids go back to school, and I'll be alone with my speaker phone and email, pretending to have co-workers and friends. I'll turn my webcam on and say "Workin' hard or hardly workin'?" to the old man looking back at me.

Oh. I've also decided that since it is impossible for me to get under 195 pounds and I still look fat in all my vacation pictures, that the proper response is for me to get obese. I was on the beach quite a bit last week and noticed that the fat people looked a lot better than the "a little heavy" people. They are filled out more, more solid looking. More comfortable looking. I look like a melted candle. They look like a ripe peach. I figure I should just give up and start cramming down the food. Or maybe I could starve myself? I'm torn. Should I go for dessicated, old, overly tan guy or big, fat, old pale guy? Either way has got to be better than this (red and white striped semi-fat middle aged guy).

All righty. Off to hang myself.

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