Monthly Archives: June 2010

Five Thoughts on a Friday – The “Why aren’t I outside” edition

Howdy folks, and welcome to another edition of Five Thoughts.

As I sit here typing this up, I can’t help but marvel at the sentiment I used for this week’s “edition name”. When we first shuffled around the office, I thought it was great (And I got asked who I bribed, who’s you know what I kissed,etc.) to get a window view like I did. Now I’m sitting here, looking at sunny skies and green trees on an 85 degree day thinking…. This truly SUCKS. I should be out there, not in here! So please excuse me if my writing wanders (more than normal, that is) since my brain is off playing in the sunshine somewhere while I’m stuck here at my desk.  Anyways…. On to today’s five thoughts!

  1. Father’s Day was this past Sunday, and it found me in downtown Detroit at Comerica Park taking in the Tigers versus the Arizona Diamondbacks with my Dad. The weather was gorgeous, the beer was cold, the Tigers won on the strength of two 7th inning home runs (one of which may not yet have landed). A great time was had by all, and the added bonus? Hearing the Star Spangled banner played by Jeff Beck. Sometimes it’s good to be lucky when you score tickets.
  2. Tuesday was maintenance/patch day for World of Warcraft as they rolled out patch 3.3.5. I can’t even fathom how complex the coding for an MMO with that much content and 11 million subscribers must be. As things turn it, the downtime for installation had to be extended. I have to tell you, if you ever want a good laugh, read the customer service forums for Warcraft when that happens. You’d think some of these people were ready to jump off of a bridge! And gamers sometimes wonder why they get the reputations they do.  Reminds me of the Southpark Episode where they ask… “How do you kill that which has no life?
  3. So according to North Korea, the United States owes them nearly $65 trillion dollars. I’m sorry, I can’t help it. Every time I try to read that article, I hear it in my head with the Dr. Evil voice from the Austin Powers movies.
  4. Changing gears completely here for a cool bit of maritime news. A 300 foot wooden ship was recently found at the bottom of Lake Michigan, almost perfectly preserved due to the depth it’s at. The L.R. Doty was recently found in the Wisconsin waters of Lake Michigan. While the article doesn’t give a lot of details about the location of the ship (probably to keep it safe), it does offer one clue. “Meanwhile, a Milwaukee fisherman in 1991 reported snagging his nets on an obstruction about 300 feet under water.” You read that right. 300 feet deep. In a lake. Folks, if you’ve never seen the great Lakes it’s hard to understand. They aren’t traditional lakes. They’re freshwater oceans for all intents. They’re massive. I’ll let one of the last lines of the article help explain it best. “Lake Michigan has about 500 dive-worthy ships still to be found, Baillod estimated.”
  5. Tonight is the NHL entry draft. I don’t get too excited about this because, well.. it isn’t the NFL draft (Or even the NBA). It’s more like the baseball draft. Most of these kids will go into the minor leagues never to be seen again. I’m not trying to be harsh here, it’s just the truth. Which is why I always laugh when I read some of these mock drafts. I realize the draft is one of those times when a fan’s hope “springs eternal”, but these things can be so sugar coated at times it’s sickening. To read some of the descriptions, you’d think all of these guys will be NHL regulars by next year. Sorry to rain on the parade folks. See that list of 30 names? Scratch about half of them out right now. They won’t pan out. That’s the reality of it all.

Ok folks, and that’s five for this week. And because of the tone I managed to strike with a couple of the posts…. let’s go with this one…. (NSFW laguage)

Have a Great Weekend Folks!
-Beer

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In this world there’s two kinds of people, my friend.

It’s been a while since I posted anything, so I’m going to do a quick post to get myself back into the swing of things. Recently, I’ve been addicted to a new video game called Red Death Redemption. I’m sure there are a ton of people out there who’ve played it and agree with me that this is one bad ass game. I’m not a great reviewer of games so I’m not going to waste your time with my review (maybe later), but I had to mention the music of this game. I don’t think I’ve ever played a game where the soundtrack has gotten me so involved in a game before RDR. Bill Elm and Woody Jackson did a great job of really getting you to feel like you’re in an old spaghetti western and you kinda expect Clint riding in on a horse. Great job fellas!

And to finish the quote from The Good, The Bad and The Ugly from Clint:

“In this world there’s two kinds of people, my friend. Those with loaded guns, and those who dig. You dig.”

Five thoughts on a Friday…The heavy on movies edition

Friday again already. Hard to complain when you’re staring at a weekend, isn’t it? Let’s see where today leads us…

  1. So last weekend, The Karate Kid offed the A-Team for the top spot at the box office. I wonder… was it Wax on, or Wax off?
  2. Saw what may be one of the dumbest advertisements the other day. It was fear mongering at it’s best. The ad says “Stop the spread of bacteria in your home” or some such nonsense. The product? An automatic soap dispenser. See, if you don’t have to touch it, you won’t get those icky, nasty bacteria on your hands! Of course, isn’t the point of WASHING your hands with soap and water to clean them? And doesn’t the touching of the soap dispenser occur BEFORE said washing? Meaning any minuscule amount of bacteria you pick up from touching the soap dispenser… would get washed away anyways? Listen, if you really want to throw your money away that badly, send it to us! Happy we could clear that one up.
  3. With the next World of Warcraft expansion approaching, it seems the people who try to steal account information (commonly referred to as being “hacked”) are really stepping up their phishing efforts. I get several emails from them every day. To an email that I’ve never used for the game. Heck, I’m even getting emails warning my my account could be suspended on games I’ve never even played or registered for! Nice to see they don’t discriminate. The account I did use, ironically, has never gotten a single email from them.
  4. I can’t even begin to list the number of things that started running through my head when I saw the headline: Flight Attendant Helps Land Plane When First Officer Falls Ill. Did he have the fish? Was he wearing a Lakers jersey? They bought their tickets. They knew what they were getting into. Where they also out of coffee? If you have no clue what I’m talking about, go rent Airplane!, right now.
  5. They were, after all…. “On a Mission from God“. And it was one of the all time great movies ever made.

That’s five for today and we’re out of here. Before we go though, a happy Father’s day to all you Dads out there, including our very own King.

Have a great weekend folks!
-Beer

The Beerbarrel’s Rules for Working in the Office

Howdy folks. It’s Wednesday. Let’s have a little fun, shall we?

This post is brought to you by…. well, you’ll probably be able to able to name people *you* work with that do some of these.

The Beerbarrel’s rules for working effectively in an office environment:

  • Make more coffee. Seriously. No one cares about your about your pay grade. Make the coffee. Don’t leave the last little bit there to burn. Even worse are the people who rinse the pot out, set it aside, and empty the filter basket. You did all that, but couldn’t put the new filter pack in and hit “Brew”?  Come on already.
  • If you are going to work out before work, or during lunch… take a shower when you’re done. Why do we even need to put this here? Please? Don’t be the stinky person.
  • Clipping your fingernails at your desk so everyone can hear the “snip, snip” is not acceptable. End of discussion.
  • Attendance is mandatory. Listen, we all get sick and miss some time. Sometimes we even want you to stay away, instead of giving everyone else the plague. But when you go the first 2 months of the year without putting in a full week? You aren’t “gaming” the system. You aren’t “really having a bad stretch”. You’re pissing your coworkers off. We will NOT cover for you when you need it if you keep pulling this crap.
  • If it needs to be a private conversation, take it somewhere private. Hearing people talking at a desk in whispers only invites more scrutiny. In other words, the more you whisper, the more people will try to listen.
  • Guys, seriously. What the heck is with the boogers smeared on the wall in front of the urinal? No nose picking, no farmer sneezing when you’re standing there. This is a workplace, not junior high. It was nasty then, too. Knock it off already! I’m not even going to discuss the floaters. Grow up already.
  • No one cares how much you like it, or how tasty it really is. That tuna, liver, and cabbage casserole is never *ever* to be cooked in the break room microwave. At all. It makes the whole place smell like a haz-mat site!
  • Ladies? Perfume is fine. Enough perfume that people can smell it half an office away is too much. Okay?

And there we have it. No, these rules have nothing to do with you actually doing your job. Think of these as guidelines for survival, if you will. Because even if you’re the best at what you do, if you do the stuff listed above people will hate you.

Since we almost all have to work, and none of us *really* want to be here why don’t we try to have a little fun with it and make it more pleasant on each other. What do you say?  Nah, didn’t think so.

Back to Work!
-Beer

Five Thoughts on a Friday – The “I wanted to get a head start” edition

Well it’s Friday again, and that means it’s time for this week’s Five Thoughts.

  1. I’ll admit to trying to cheat this week. I tried to get most of this written last night (Five thoughts on a Thursday?). Apparently WordPress thought that would be a bad idea. The dashboard site that we use to publish was down. All night (Ok, maybe not all night. Just the 2 or so hours I was checking). No big deal, except for that cheerful little “WordPress will be back in just a minute” error message. That was there, for hours, not minutes.
  2. I’ve been keeping an eye on this one. They’re calling it “The Drudge Tax“. Technically, this little feature we do here may fall under it since I tend to link to stories. Still, the show goes on. And believe me folks, you don’t want to see me doing 5 thoughts worth of original stuff every week. It would be… out there.
  3. A lady who’s trying to be the “heaviest living woman”. She says, and this is a direct quote from the article, “I’m very healthy. I go to the doctor every three months”. The article also points out that she’s more than 600 pounds, suffers from Type 2 diabetes and struggles with basic tasks such as cooking and taking a shower. Um, Lady? Your definition of “healthy”? I don’t think it means what you think it means.
  4. As if having skunks around your house isn’t bad enough. Having RABID skunks in your neighborhood? That’s just…. ouch. I think that’s about as bad as it gets.
  5. I think it’s safe to dub this “Remake Weekend” at the box office. With not one, but two remakes of 80’s favorites. First off, The Karate Kid it’s a different take from what I can see. Having just seen Rush Hour again, I wonder if they’ll be able to work in any of the Jackie Chan light-hearted humor. Second, the A-Team. Apparently in the version of the A-Team, they actually shoot people! Did someone not tell them that was part of the joke on the original show? All those guns going off, and nobody getting shot. That *was* the joke. Of course, given the state of Hollywood and the way they’re recycling old ideas, every weekend could be “Remake Weekend”.

From the originals…

Ok, that’s five and we’re out for the weekend. Something about graduation season being in full swing.

Have a great weekend, folks!
-Beer

And It’s the Hawks!

After 49 years, the Blackhawks have hoisted the Stanley Cup again.

As for us? Well, we finally both got it right for once. We had picked the Hawks to win it. Hey, we had to get one right eventually, didn’t we?

With that, the silly season can now begin. Next year officially becomes “This Year”, and the whole thing starts over. So who will be the teams to watch (in the offseason)? Hard to say.

  • Chicago – The defending champs always bear watching. Even if it’s just to see what crazy things they do with the Stanley Cup.
  • New Jersey – Still haven’t hired a coach but, they’re the Devils. They can be a machine at times.
  • Phoenix – The fact they they were a good team this year gets lost in the fact that the ownership situation down there is, to be charitable… A train wreck. That train wreck is of course, why we have to keep watching. Can’t look away.
  • Pittsburgh – No longer the defending champs. Still very young and talented though. But rumors of a big name like Malkin being moved have started to surface. (Chicago, with a bunch of good young players should watch this too. It could happen to them before long). Does it actually happen? We’ll find out.
  • Tampa Bay – New owner, new GM, new coach. Watch to see who stays, who goes, and maybe mostly importantly… who they bring in.
  • Carolina – Strange things are afoot, with the owner looking for a partner to take a minority ownership stake. In the meantime, they’re cutting payroll well below the salary cap. You never want to hear that as a fan.

Those are just a few of the teams that jump out to me as I write this. Of course, as the off season progresses things can change fast. Two weeks ago, I’d have probably put Detroit on the list, but they got Lidstrom and Holmstrom signed, and now it looks like they’ll be pretty quiet. Will Atlanta make some noise? They usually don’t, but time will tell.

Later folks!
-Beer

Five Thoughts on a Friday – The Let it Be edition

Uh oh… Is Beer getting ready to go all Beatlemania on something today? No, not really. We’ll just see where this one leads today. Can’t believe it’s Friday again already, guess short weeks can do that to you. Especially when your co-blogger didn’t realize you weren’t going to be in the office on Tuesday, either.

So without further delay, it’s time for today’s Five Thoughts….

  1. I always knew there was an idiot out there for everything. Heck, I’ve always been a firm believer that whenever you make the world idiot proof the world will just go and make a better idiot. Here’s the proof. Picketing a spelling bee? Seriously? Man, you need help.
  2. Staying on the idiot theme for a moment. I don’t mention this one to debate the right or wrong of the attempt at a phantom recall. I want to talk about this memo. Here’s the deal. Anyone who’s come within 30 feet of a business school has heard about the disastrous GM side saddle fuel tank memo. These people went to school they had to have heard about it. Besides that, common sense flat out says YOU DO NOT PUT $HIT LIKE THAT IN A WRITING. End of discussion. To whoever wrote that memo? You’re an idiot, first class.
  3. The king sent this one to me, and to be honest – I don’t want to know what he was searching for when he found it. The headline speaks for itself though… Sword-Wielding Porn Actor Kills One, Hurts Two. Yeah, I can’t top that. Nor do I want to.
  4. Oops. McDonald’s is recalling a bunch of the new Shrek glasses. I guess using a known carcinogen (Cadmium) in paint for drinking glasses is a bad idea. Who knew? This story would have been MUCH cooler if it had been some sort of radioactive contamination, you know? Then the kids could glow green, just like Shrek! (Ok, I know, that was bad.)
  5. And here it is. You knew I wasn’t going to let this week by without throwing in my two cents (Just like everyone else on the planet) on *the* sports story of the week. Armando Galarraga, of the Detroit Tigers pitched a perfect game Wednesday night. Except for one small thing, the box score shows he gave up a hit. See, the umpire blew the call. Here’s the issue I have… It *was* a perfect game. In fact, he went 28 up, 28 down. One more than needed. The umpire has admitted he blew the call, and profusely apologized. I take issue with only one thing. It *was* a perfect game. Stop describing it as “near perfect”. Everyone knows he went 27 up, 27 down. You don’t have to make it “official”, just stop calling it “near perfect”. Call it the “perfect game with the blown call” if you want to. That would work.  And for the record, I tip my cap to the pitcher and to the umpire on this whole deal. They defined being accountable, and classy in their actions after the game.

So there we have it for today. Considering the way I started, maybe it should have been the “Let it rip” or “let it fly” edition. But no, I think the Beatles said it best. Major League Baseball, Commissioner Selig, it appears you’re not going to overturn the ruling on the field for Armando Galarraga’s perfect game. To that, I say “you’re getting it right, please don’t. Let it be.” That game is far better defined by what happened that night and the actions of the the men involved if it’s left to stand on its own as it is. Let it be.

Have a great weekend folks!
-Beer

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