Friday, July 31, 2009

Friday Funny

(This is an "At the Bank" story too.) For the last eight years I've worked at least an hour away from home and so it happened that in all those years I never ran into one person I knew from home. My new bank is only fifteen minutes from home and I haven't gone one day without meeting someone I know.

One of those meetings happened this week and it was a lady I went to church with growing up. I was rolling over her CD and we got to reminiscing about those years. As I talked to her, I remembered something my sisters and I had done to her when we were kids. For those who knew our family, you know that we practically lived at church on the weekends. One Sunday afternoon we were at church a couple hours before service started, and, well, we were bored. So we decided to prank call people from the church office phone. We were only kids so the best joke going for kids aged twelve, eleven, and nine, was the, "Is your refrigerator running?" joke. That Sunday we called on this lady, and after delivering the, "Well you better go catch it" punchline, we hung up on her. Even though it was funny, I felt like I'd committed an unforgivable sin.

All these years later, I still felt horrible we were so mean to this lovely old woman. So since she was in my office, I took the opportunity to apologize to her. She of course didn't remember it and assured me everything was alright. Then she told me our prank was nothing and that she had a story to tell about her childhood. Here's what she said...

When she was a teenager her family lived in a big city. Her parents would often go out for the night and when they did, she would call a taxi to come to her neighbors house. Then she'd wait until it arrived and her and her siblings would have a blast watching the confused neighbors and the irate taxi driver.

Now that's an awesome prank, and a hilarious story. All from an old lady I thought would never hurt a fly.

Have a great weekend everyone.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Answers to the decree

So it seems my post about missing bloggers got the attention of the Blog Queen -- Kimmy, for those who didn't get the memo -- and she has decreed a revival of the blogosphere. If you haven't read it yet, you must join in the conversation. It's four posts back and here's the link.) In reaction, Adrienne posted a list of questions as well as her own answers, to spur on the call for a blog revival. Since I may be responsible for all this, I must answer.

1.) Given the chance to go skydiving tomorrow
-a. Would you?
b. Why/Why not?
c. Who would you want to go with?
d. What would your thoughts be on the way down?
I used to say yes to this, but I'm afraid I've gotten too fat. There's a weight limit on those parachutes, you know?! But if I did go, it for sure would be with friends... any who would go with me. And I'm not sure I can top Kevin's adult diaper comment, so I'm going with his on what I would say on the way down.

2.) Do you stop when someone is broke down on the side of the road? Reasoning?
I/we have stopped many times over the years. Of course it can be scary, but living in fear only makes you afraid. Yeah, it's always a bit uncomfortable, but that's when you feel alive.

3.) If you could instantly lose 10lbs permanently or receive $10,000.00, what would you do?
The ten G's, of course. Ten pounds wouldn't look any different on me anyway.

4.) What is your favorite room in your house?
The living room. All the best parties happen there.

5.) When showering, do you start the water and then get in, or get in then start the water?
Start, wait, then enter.

6.) If you paid $125 for an hour long tour flight - 6 passenger plane - and threw up all over, would you clean it up or leave it for the pilot?
I'd throw up more if I tried to clean it, but leaving it just sounds rude. Not sure on this one.

7.) What are 3 words that you think describe me?
Three for Adrienne: Fiesty, real, honest.
Three for Kimmy: HHHawesome, happy, sometimes-reserved.

8.) Do you believe in 'the one' or in creating love?
Creating, always. Even if God made someone perfect for us, we still have to make it work.

Anyone else care to join in the revival? Cut and paste and answer for yourself.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Friday Funny

As I mentioned yesterday, I spent four days in Warren, Ohio this week in training. It's about a forty five minute drive and a couple mornings I was really running behind. On the way into town Wednesday morning, I realized I hadn't brushed my teeth. I took a little detour to a small gas station/convenience store for some gum.

I grabbed a Vitamin Water and a pack of gum and got into line. The first thing that struck me funny was an elderly lady buying two six-packs of Miller High Life in cans, and three packs of Pall Mall cigarettes. What an odd purchase at 8am.

While she was being checked out, a rather boisterous little man was complaining about the fact that his bank wanted to put a ten day hold on his out of state check. The following is the conversation between him and the owner of the store... verbatim.

Short guy: "The stupid lady at the bank said I had to wait ten days to get MY money! I can't wait that long. Will you cash it?"
Owner: "What state is it from? Can I see the check?" (Taking the check from the guy.)
Short guy: "Michigan. Why? Are you gonna cash it?"
Owner: "Yes, with a fee."
Short guy: "How much?"
Owner: "How about $6?"
Short guy: "OK. How much do you charge for, like, a $100 check?"
Owner: "I don't know... how about $2?"
Short guy: "Sounds fair."

Now if this little bargaining session wasn't enough, I sat my Vitamin Water and gum on the counter and the owner looked down at them, and without picking them up or scanning them at all, he said, "$3." I was so taken aback at the entire scene I didn't even bother to check if the guy gave me a deal or ripped me off. Either way, I walked out laughing.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

It's that time of every-other-year again...


Those of you that follow Ell's facebook page know we tackled the every other year task of harvesting our apples and making applesauce. I had training in Warren, Ohio this week (a Friday Funny is coming from my adventures there) and today was the last day. I finished early so I was able to spend about five hours with Ell cutting, cooking, straining, and canning the awesomeness that is our applesauce. If you've never had any, ask. You won't be disappointed.

In other news, there's a good conversation happening in the previous post about bloggers. Check it out and add your thoughts. The more ideas and reasons in that conversation the better. I'll be back tomorrow night with a funny.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Where have all the bloggers gone?

Does anyone else think blogging and blogs are slowing down, maybe akin to becoming late-middle-aged? I remember when blogging started (even though I didn't have one at first) and everyone was doing it. One of the news magazines talked about it as, "... the permanent home of the computer age." While it never quite made it to that point, blogging did get pretty big. It became so because the people that were doing it, did it often and a lot. The word, Blog, became as household as Google and YouTube.

It makes you wonder whether their success would also be their downfall. Blogs were never meant to be social networks but they quickly became that. People connected and communicated and refreshed and followed with people they would never have done so if the blogosphere didn't exist. The big blogging sites even started adding features so you could follow people and blogs more up-to-date, and keep in touch on an almost instant basis. People were not only posting every day but two, four, ten, and some even more times in a single day.

Enter MySpace and now more recently, Facebook. A computer programmer somewhere saw what blogging was trying to do on a social scale, and recreated the idea but this time making it more of a conversation than a letter-exchange. They made applications combining the journal writing of blogs and the interaction of instant messaging, and came away with something that people could use for both. Social Networking on your computer or phone became huge in a matter of months.

This past June, both Blogger and Wordpress announced their new membership numbers for the last six months of 2008. They were the lowest numbers of any of the last nine previous six month cycles. Crazy. But it's kind of obvious why. It was summed up for me when I overheard Ell and a friend talking earlier this week. They both agreed they had been neglecting their blogs because they felt their blogs were for more serious writing while Facebook was for quick and easy updating. And they just didn't have anything deep to write, or the time to think about it, so they hadn't been using their blog. As I look down my blogroll (and the rolls of others who have timers on their lists) I see the trend increasing. I can name only a couple bloggers who are still blogging at the same frequency they used to.

So is blogging middle-aged? Still strong and vital, but not as flexible or willing to go at the same pace as the youngsters? It kinda seems like it, doesn't it?

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Thursday somethings

I forgot to thank Cyndy for last week's funny. She's been such a contributor here lately, and sometimes I forget to thank her. Cyndy, you da bomb.

Since it's not quite Friday, and because I work at a bank again, I've decided to revive my "At the Bank" series. Today I talked to a lady on the phone about her checking account. She was quite elderly and quite hard of hearing. After we'd had a back and forth conversation for at least a full minute about her account, she asked, "Is this my niece?" One thing that's never been said about me is that I sound like a woman, so that cracked me up. I guess this is more a funny about old age and not a bank, but it happened there, so deal with it.

To go along with that, I want to paint a word picture of something Ell and I saw yesterday while driving...

Two separate signs in front of the same house, about thirty feet from one another.
The first one read: "Daycare"
The second one read: "Chainsaw chains sharpened here"

That's one fun daycare or a really odd sweatshop, depending on your view.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Friday Funny

Dog Pack Attacks Gator In Texas
t times nature can be cruel, but there is also a raw beauty, and even a certain justice manifested within that cruelty.

The alligator, one of the oldest and ultimate predators, normally considered the 'apex predator', can still fall victim to implemented 'team work' strategy, made possible due to the tight knit social structure and 'survival of the pack mentality' bred into the canines.
See the remarkable photograph below courtesy of Nature Magazine. Note that the Alpha dog has a muzzle hold on the gator preventing it from breathing, while another dog has a hold on the tail to keep it from thrashing. The third dog attacks the soft underbelly of the gator.

Not for the squeamish...

Have a great weekend everyone.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

An update

I had no less than 19 emails over the past few days and I wanted to assure all of you who asked, that my new job is going great. There's been a few hiccups like getting me full access to the computer system, and a pile of pending items left over from the guy I replaced, but other than that everything has gone really well. I know banking, and I know what it takes to be good at it, and that feels better than you can possibly imagine. My time at the last job was exactly the opposite. I truly felt like I was drowning most every day I worked there; complete with intense panic and gasping for air. It was really rough. It's hard to stomach being a failure and I was pretty down that I couldn't grasp the job, but you just get to a point where you accept the truth and move on. I did that, the drowning is behind me now, and I'm happy to have moved on.

My friend Zack sent me a great text yesterday I want to share...

Today at 5 minutes and 6 seconds after 4:00, it will be 04:05:06, 07/08/09. This will never happen again in our life.

Pretty cool, huh?