Wednesday, June 30, 2004

i want, i want!

I'm feeling the itch.

I want a new computer.

I want a new iBook. I'll take a refurbed one. Apple has their hot deals or something button and they have some cool price breaks.

Do I need one?

Uhm, no. But it'd be cool edit video in the yard.

So feel free to send money.

the vines, aka


Tuesday, June 29, 2004

80s Muzak Lyrics!

2 kinds

There are two kinds of people.

There's us, and there's them.

Choose carefully.

Sunday, June 27, 2004

pixelgirl presents...


I like to take pictures.

Just snapshots really, catching people off guard as themselves.

So when I got a digital camera a couple Christmases ago, I just took pictures. I started taking chances taking pictures of things that probably wouldn't turn out. What did I care? They're just 1s and 0s on a card. they're easy to delete.

So I took some of these kinds during our trip. And I took a few that looked great. They looked good enough to use as a desktop picture on your computer.

So I submitted them to a place called She liked my picture saying that she doesn't usually post straight pictures but she liked mine.


mary's grandmother

Mary's grandmother (who goes by Gigi) is in the hospital again.

This time they may have figured out what caused her to pass out and give herself a concussion. It appears to be dehydration and malnutrition. Evidently she gets stomach pains when she eats so she just doesn't eat or drink.

So they've got her in a semi-private with bags of saline in her arms trying to get fluids in her. She still won't eat though. She just looks at the food, takes a couple of bites then acts like she's just eaten a 64oz steak in 5 minutes so she can get it for free.

So when we visit, we all try to get her to eat. But she just hems and haws. And nobody has the balls to say "If you don't eat you're gonna fucking die!!! Got it??? Eat!!" So we all just grin like idiots.

Her son is a smart guy, he went to the doc and asked if they could give her something that will increase her appetite. Still, somebody needs to go head to head with her and get her to eat.

My feeling though are not good. I think she thinks she going to die. I know because when we left, she made sure to tell me that she loved me. She NEVER does this. Never. So I think she's getting ready, taking care of things before she goes.

Saturday, June 26, 2004

the rest of the vacation...

The rest of our vacation trip was pretty cool.

We ate breakfast out everyday. Three out of four time we ate at a chain called "Perkins'". Not bad, just typical breakfast stuff.

Sunday we went to Gatorland. Gatorland is a Sea World wannabe that has alligators instead of whales. The main diff between alligators and whales is that alligators are very stupid and dangerous. Alligators only learn one trick. Eating. That's what they do. So once you seen the chomp on something, you're done. Everyone seemed to enjoy it though and Josh got to sit on the back of a gator with his hands around it's jaws. Pretty damn cool.

Monday was my birthday, the second I've spent with these people. We went to NASA. NASA rocks! They have a visitor center area and tours of the complex. Everything at NASA is big. Big buildings, big rockets and big spaces. The best part was the Saturn V rocket they have on display. It's in a building that has moon mission displays but you hardly notice them. You walk in and the only thing you can notice is that they have a Saturn V rocket indoors!!!! After the tours we we're going to watch a launch of a rocket, but it got postponed because of a very strong storm.

Tuesday was kind of fucked. We we're going to go to Universal Studios but Mary's step-mom Sue got an idea for saving some cash off the ticket price. Orlando is full of time shares, and they all want your money so they try different ways to get you to check out their place. One of the ways is that they offer big discounts on park tickets if you sit through one of their sales pitches. Well she got the idea to sit through one of these and we'd end up saving $150 or so. Well we did and it was a bad experience but I'll post that in another update.

Universal has 2 parks in one. One is ride and coasters, the other is less rides and more behind the scenes movie stuff. Mary wanted to ride "The Mummy's Revenge" ride so we went to the one with fewer rides. Parks in the summer are hot, there're a lot of people and lines are long. We waited for almost an hour to ride the Mummy. So that set the tone for the rest of the day. After the park we ate at the Hard Rock there. Josh had a blast looking at all the rock stuff. He had me running around taking pictures of all the guitars.

Wednesday was pretty fun. First we went to the ocean. We were only able stay for an hour, but Josh and I swam anyway. It was fun, just the 2 of us hanging out in the ocean. After that we headed back over to the same area as NASA for air-boat rides. That was about the best time I had in Florida. Cruising around, looking at alligators and other wildlife in their natural habitat. That was the coolest.

We started driving back on Thursday, and got home last night around 9:30. The house looked bigger for some reason.

Now we just want to rest.

Monday, June 21, 2004

vacation, days 1 & 2

We left for Florida on Friday.

It was good day. We had no real set time to leave, just before 11am or so. So we left about 8ish and headed down I-10 with the intent on missing rush-hour traffic in Houston and stopping when we got tired of looking at road.

We stopped in Seguin for breakfast at McDonald's which has become a tradtion of sorts for us. Whenever we pass through Seguin at breakfast time on the road to somewhere we have to stop there.

After that, it was just the road. I spent the time listening to "Snowcrash" from I swear to god I love that place. It's just too much of a good deal.

When we got to Houston there was traffic. Of course there's traffic it's fucking Houston. So I take the Jeep off cruise-control and play with the other cars. We almost got in a wreck and killed a motorcycle cop in the same second. We were doing ok when a extra wide load trailer carrying a big ditch digger need to get to the center median. The cycle cop was his escort. We we're right behind the wide load caravan when the four lanes suddenly merged to 3 lanes. "Fuck, fuck, fuck!" All at once I was trying to keep from smashing the cycle cop into the wide load trailer, keep others from doing the same, and keep from getting anything from ramming us. Ten seconds later all was ok but it was pretty hairy for a few.

After that it was smooth sailing in the HOV lane all the way to downtown. We got through Houston after one stop for drinks.

The rest of the driving was really easy for the rest of the way through Biloxi. We hit a few rainstorms but that was all the trouble we had.

The hotel Hampton Inn where we stayed in Biloxi had free wireless internet in the lobby. Knowing that you can't just stop radio waves without paying extra cash, I cracked open the iBook in our room and sure enough, there was the network.

Their network was wide open, no passwords needed. When I started Safari it went to the Hampton Inn page for that hotel, but that was it. I thought for sure I'd have to crack in but no.

We ate free breakfast the next morning in the lobby and hit the road.

We cruised through the rest of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama in very little time. I thought for sure that we'd be to Orlando by 2:00pm. Florida never stops. It just keeps going. It tricks you.

We finally made it to Kissamee and just drove up the strip, waiting for Mary's parents to get to the time share. But their plane was delayed so we had to try and get the room. We got it and we're shocked at how nice it was.

I'll post pictures when I'm off a dialup.

Thursday, June 17, 2004

on the road

Well, at least tomorrow we'll be on the road.

Mary's freaking out as usual. It's her nature to get way to nervous before anything big. She hates change. But to be fair, change hates her too.

We did a last minute checklist thing and so far all we need to do is lock up and leave.

We live in a good neighborhood but the houses on either side have been broken into, one while the people were on vacation. I have a feeling we might be next. So we've gotten timers for lights and stuff. We don't have an alarm system, but that didn't help the guys next door. The thieves cut the phone lines so the security company had no idea.

So we're hiding stuff as best as we can. Guitars are getting shoved under my son's bed and we're hiding all important info away.

The one thing other than security that's bothering me is that I was the net on the road. So I signed up for RR's dial-up service. They're supposed to send me my passwords and stuff, but so far nothing. Oh well.

I may post from the road but who knows.

Wednesday, June 16, 2004

gmail invite

I was lucky enough to score a Gmail invite tonight from a guy over at AAF. Gmail is Google's new email service. New as in beta new.

What's so cool about another free internet mail service?

This one gives you a gig of storage. That's right, a fucking gig. A gig of storage means never having to delete any messages. Well almost never. A gig equals to about a million with 5 more zeros after in mail messages.

Shlo the guy who gave me the invite is pretty cool guy so I feel bad that I don't know much about him other than he hates Florida.

Thanks Shlo

almost there

One more day of work then I'll be free until the 28th.

Just one more day of spinning my wheels, acting like I'm getting things done.

The agenda for tomorrow is pretty damn light. When I get in I have to call a client about a meeting at 10:00am. We set up the meeting on Tuesday afternoon, but he said "Now give me a call Wednesday afternoon just to make sure nothing pops up". Translation: "I know I just said we'd meet on Thursday morning, but give me a call the day before so I can cancel".

So I call this afternoon as requested.

At this business is this woman. She answers phones. She announces the name of the business and asks how she can direct your call. Her tone is neutral, but in a very charming way. She never lets you know her name. I let her know mine and who I'm with and can I please speak to her boss. "I'm sorry, but he's on the other line with a customer". Having played this game with her at least 40 times over the last month we both know how it's gonna end. I leave her my number and please ask our receptionist page me. She's heard it so many times that she probably doesn't even write it down anymore.

That was at 3:00.

She and I repeat the process at 5:00.

So now I'll have to call at 9:00am tomorrow to make sure the meeting at 10:00 is still on. It won't be. But those are the hoops I have to jump through.

Then in the afternoon I get to direct a 2 camera medical chat show that the host actually pays to have on the air. That's right, pays to have on the air. The show itself isn't that bad per se, it's just that it's hard to get around the fact that it's a 2 camera medical chat show.

One week you might tune in to hear what it was like to head up the entire NYC area medical community during 9/11, the next may be a show about polyps. So the topics are kinda hit and miss.

And to be honest, the show isn't the problem. It's the crew. Our floor crew/production assistants are paid about $6.50 to start. And as the saying says, you get what you pay for. The people who are actually good at running studio camera move up and on to better things. So the ones who are left are a bunch of fucktards who act like they're doing you a favor by showing up. They kind of forget that that's part of the whole job thing.

You don't have to be in MENSA to run camera at a TV station. Most things are formatted to the point that you don't really have to actually know how to run a studio camera. You just need to know 4 words: tilt, pan, zoom and truck. If you know what those words mean and know what to do when you hear them, then you are set.

The problems come when you combine those words with any other words. Then the gears grind, minds melt and hilarity insues.


Well, when you've run camera for more than an hour you come to the realization that in order to get the glassy lens thing to point in one direction you have to move the un-glassy rear end of the camera in the opposite direction. So in order to pan left, your arms move the tripod handle right. Tilt down? Tripod handles up. Pretty easy. Yet we have guys on the crew who've been working at the station for over a year who don't get it. So I get to say things like "No, your other left" and "No, your other down" to people who's parents have paid good money for degrees from very expensive universities. At least the parents get to brag that their kid has a job at a TV station.

Two weeks ago one of the camera ops pulled me aside after the exciting 2 camera medical chat show. He was concerned that I wasn't giving stand-bys for the next shot. Like "Stand-by
Camera 9, Camera 9 you are hot". Usually I give more stand-bys than are allowable by law, I call shows very well thank you. So I just kind of stared at this guy wondering if his mom knew he had gotten a fucking Manson tattoo on his leg, or if he was ever gonna wear long pants so clients wouldn't have to look at the tattoo.

"Have you thought about this show much?" I ask him. His eyes just glaze over as he tries to figure out where I'm heading with this. "See, here's the thing; this is a chat show. It's not scripted. I don't know what they're going to say or when they're going to say it. So Stand-bys are kind of hard to do".

More glaze. Ugh.

"Let me ask you this, how many cameras do we have on the show?"

He knows this. "Two."

"Right" I say. "So I want you to remember this..."

Glaze again.

"If your camera isn't punched up, it's the very next thing I am going to go to."

He gets it. He understands. He smiles.

Then it dawns on him, I've had to explain something very basic to him. I've told him that water is wet and that bricks are heavy. Still he shows promise. The other ones are very bad.

So like I said, I'm going on vacation on Friday.

Tuesday, June 15, 2004

the only time i'll talk basketball here.

I am soooooooo happy the LAkers lost.

I am soooooooo glad those whiners couldn't buy a championship!

I am soooooooo glad Mallone will retire without a ring!!!!!!!!


And stuff.

you want what? (loooong)

Okay, here's how it went down.

The Client showed up with (follow along here) Mr. Big, Ms. Big and Mr. Not-so-big.

The Client shows up before any of the others and says that Mr. Big just wants to look at some helicopter shots of their resort and sit in on the edit of the spots we were going to edit. The client remembers that she has some music for the spots we're gonna edit in her car, so she runs out to the parking lot to get the CDs.

On the way out she runs into Mr. Not-so-big, they stand outside the station chatting up about who knows what. I run by my office to collect some PR shit that I want to return to the client so her people won't bug me for it later.

I go by the lobby and she and Mr. Not-so-big are still chatting it up so I go back to the edit suite and drop the PR stuff off, then head to the coffee kiosk that keeps me caffed up for free.

I take the long way back to the lobby and before I get there I hear the client's laughter and some other voices I don't know. The receptionist had buzzed her through without me and was just gonna let them wander the halls. I wouldn't give a crap but the Director of Engineering is on a security spazz and reemed me for the very fucking same thing a week before when the receptionist buzzed the client through.

The client has everybody there: Mr. Big, Ms. Big and Mr. Not-so-big. I introduce myself and meet Ms. Big, then re-meet Mr. Big. Mr. Not-so-big and I have met before and he just smiles. Usually he's the big guy but Mr. Big's appearance makes him smaller.

Mr. Big looks at the big pictures of my station's news anchors that line the halls like he's never seen pictures that big in his life. This guy's a high roller and he goes gaga over airbrushed pics of 4- something women when he could buy really hot wanna-bes? Okay.

So we get back to the edit suite. Usually I offer coffee or something to kiss ass, but I'm still pissed at them for postponing so much. I want to get done.

"Let's look at the helicopter shots so (Mr. Big) can see them." Sure, okay.

I put their Beta in the VTR, roll the tape in fastforward scanning for floaty chopper shots. I have never seen the tape but it appears to be a show taped for a local cable show. The show was a pay for show showcasing local businesses that didn't mind paying for exposure. Viewer of course never know that what they are watching is essentially PAID PROGRAMMING acting like a real show.

So I find exactly 2 chopper shots. Ms. Big doesn't like one of the shots because it was shot after a big rain storm so the sand traps are more like ponds, but she's "Cool with the other shot". Mr Big doesn't like the other shot because. That's it. Just because.

So Mr. Big starts talking about how "We're gonna need more chopper shots". Uhm, okay.

"Yeah, more chopper shots and new shots of the condos. We need that stuff for the Promotional DVDs".

The what? I look at The Client. Her eyes make that "you know" look.

Then it clicks. she's told them a bunch of bullshit I don't know about. Okay, I get it now. I'm supposed to act like I've known all along so she doesn't look like an ass.

Yeah, well I'm stilled pissed that you jerked me around for 2 days. I don't wanna play.

"Oooohhhh, Promotional DVDs for the resort. Yeah, this is the first time I've heard about this". Mr. Big looks at her then explains what he wants.

"You're going to working on a Promotional DVD for us that'll be 7 minutes long and..." At this point I just let him talk because I really didn't care what he was saying at this point. All I'm thinking is that I was supposed to be editing a couple of spots, not doing pre-planning fro a long format project.

"Well, I'm gonna have to check with my boss for pricing for the shooting and editing of your promo video; as far as the whole DVD thing goes, we really don't offer that as a service but I'll see what we can do". Translation: "Sure we'll take your money, but I'm gonna have to sub out the DVD thing and double charge you".

So we finally move on to the edit we're supposed to be working on. I'm almost done but they announce that they have a meeting to go to. Yeah, okay. But I tell The Client that she needs to come back after the meeting and approve the spot after the render.

So after they leave I finish the spot. Around 5-ish I gave her a call to have approve the spots. Her phone was off. Called her 10 minutes later. Off.

Finally I get her on the phone, but she can't come to the station cuz she's at home getting ready for her vacation. "But I trust you so just make copies for the other stations, and I'll see you when I get back".

Yeah, TTFN.

We'll see if this bites me in the ass later.

still waiting.

So I'm waiting. It's not yet 2:00 but I expect them at any moment.

I wonder how this is all gonna shake out. I didn't think 'til now that since the big cheese is coming to the sesssion that he might not be happy with the spots.

But this isn't the way to let me know. Call me in advance so I don't get blind-sided. It's that whole respect thing again.

I better get ready to tap dance.

clients suck. at least some of them do.

So I'm sitting here.


Sitting here with nothing to do because a client postponed their edit session. Again. They wanted this emergency edit session to update their spots and I made time. "Sure, Monday morning will be fine" I told them.

So Monday comes. But my client is a no-show.


So I call her around 11-ish, "Hey, just checking to see if you're OK..." I say. "Oh, I'm running late" she says.

No shit dumb fuck, that's why I'm calling.

"So do you have an ETA?" I ask. "Well," she says, "I'm just getting some last minute things taken care of before I go on vacation. Are you free this afternoon?"

She knows that if I'm open I'll say sure. I'm a nice guy. "Yeah the afternoon will be fine. Can you get here around 2:00?" I like to go home at 5:30 like I'm scheduled. Why work late if you're on salary?

"That sounds great, I'll be there at 2:00."

2:00 comes and goes. Frustration settles in. I just want to get the job done. But I'm not gonna call her. I'm tired of fucking around with her. I don't mind people being late, but this is a total lack of respect.

So 4:30 rolls around and she calls. "I'm sorry, I'm not going to be able to make it. What about tomorrow?"

So much for the emergency.

"Sure, Tuesday morning, 9:00am."

"Great, I'll be there."

So today is Tuesday. I walk in to my office and check my voicemail. It's her saying that now her bosses (or clients, I haven't figured out her position in this whole thing) wants to come and give approval to the new spots. they can't make it to 2:00 in the afternoon.

I call her back to find out WTF is going on, and confirm they'll be here at 2:00.

Will they show? Will I be nice, or do I go postal?

I just want to be done.

So I'm waiting.

strange week

Just a weird week.

Starting with Mary backing the Jeep over my cat. Then Mary's grandmother fracturing her skull on a kitchen counter.

Tonight we found out that Mary's step-dad's mom has ovarian cancer.

All this during Reagan's funeral. Just gave life a freaky feel.

Then at about 10:30 we noticed a couple of ambulances and a firetruck at a down and across the street. Josh's friend Jack' grandfather died. Heart attack. He was walking the dog earlier, went in to watch TV and about 20 minutes later he was gone.

I'd rather go that way than a car accident or fire.

I've had enough of death. I'm done with it.

Monday, June 14, 2004

waiting for my vacation

This Thursday is the last day of work before my vacation kicks in

We're going to Florida on Mary's Dad's tab. They have a time-share in Orlando or something so we're going. Driving across the country down I-10. Traveling the great South on the way to the Atlantic.

We're looking forward to it. The last real vacation I've had was last summer's trip to NYC. Even though Mary was there, it was really just me and Josh. The 2 of us riding the subway, eating food from a cart on the street, having breakfast in Central Park. It was great, but Mary missed a lot because of her convention/award show.

This time it's a 3 of us. Plus Mary's dad and stepmom.

Oh joy. The stepmom can be real bitch, but as long as the in-laws keep drinking things'll be cool.

We plan to hit Disney, Universal, NASA and more.

Josh and I want to hit the Kona Skatepark. That'll be strange cuz I've "been" there in THPS. I've skated every bit of it in a video game. I've seen every inch there, so it'll be odd to actually see it in real life.

I'm gonna miss tacos.


Mary's grandmother is home from the hospital after spending the last few days in ICU due to a fractured skull.

I thought for sure a 92 year old woman with a fractured skull would be in the hospital for longer, but evidently I'm not a doctor.

trying out blogger

So I'm trying out blogger now.

Friday, June 11, 2004


I thought that this would just be a place holder for my name. Well, it may become my blog of choice.

Here's my LJ blog until I make my choice.