Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Nocturnal Ramblings

Dang, it's been a long time since I posted. Sorry. I either haven't had the chance, or upon having a chance, couldn't think of anything worth posting. Go figure. For lack of anything coherent, tonight I'll just add a conglomeration of thoughts.

First, I've been spending my surfing time reading Order of the Stick. It's incredibly entertaining, especially if you're a gamer. LOTS of in-jokes and D&D references. Check it out.

Okay, something that has been bothering me is GAS PRICES. Oh for the days when our Commander in Chief wasn't a war monger and encouraged people to CONSERVE our resources, rather than showing our "support" and "patriotism" by paying whatever was asked at the pumps without question. Oh, and in case you were wondering, the major oil conglomerates reported incredible profits in the third quarter. Yep, that's right. They're making a killing, while passing the cost of business on to you, the consumer.

Speaking of Jimmy Carter, my all-time favorite president and human being since Ben Franklin (yes that was a joke, about the BF being a president...he should have been, but he was too smart to take the job), one of my favorite comedians, Kathleen Madigan, had a bit about Ross Perot...hang on, I'm getting there...where she said that in an interview, Carter was asked his opinion of new presidential-hopeful Perot. Carter responded with a bunch of negative comments about Perot. Madigan summed it up perfectly saying, "If Jimmy Carter calls you an're probably an asshole." Carter ismy favorite past-president largely because of everything he did AFTER leaving the Oval Office. Seriously, how many world leaders do you know of who spent their post-ruling years building houses -- with their own hands -- for the needy?

Anyway, our current political climate of war, being outright lied to, and being hated by the world just leaves me yearning for the innocent days of my youth.

Next topic: Magic Hat Brewery
(err, don't bother with their website; I just discovered that it's a clunky, obtuse, flash-animation disaster)
These guys have been my favorite beer company since I stumbled upon their brewery the last time I was in Vermont, about five years ago. Their beer was (and is) good, but I have to admit that they won me over for life with thier seasonal beer of that summer. It was and herbal brew called A Beer Named Sue. Hell yeah. Johnny Cash fans in Vermont. We got a new Harris Teeter near where I work and they carry Magic Hat's beer. Right now I am enjoying the refreshing taste of their Fat Angel. Mmm. Seriously, this is some of the best tasting beer I've ever sampled. Slightly bitter, crisp, light, and satisfying.

With that, I'm off to refill my glass. Talk to you again soon.

Wait..parting thought. Drinking beer is first and foremost meant to be a social event, especially when it's good beer. Tell me about YOUR favorite beer. What do you like, what do you hate? I recently pointed out to a coworker that while I AM a beer connoisseur, I am decidedly not a beer snob. I'll come out and admit that my favorite "cheap" beer is Budweiser. But that comes from a well-trained, discerning palatte. Did you know that, unlike many blue-collar beers, Bud has a faint nutty flavor? See...that's discerning. Your turn.

Playing on XM: Robert Earl Keen

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Return to hobbit island

More discoveries of Hobbit remains discovered, and apparently they rode not ponies, but tiny elephants.

Playing on XM: Midnight Oil

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Neighborhood charm

Okay, today was my "late day" at work...I volunteer in my son's classroom in the morning, and leave home around 11:00 to go to work. So, as I walked out to my car at 11:00, I hear the distinct *thwack* of a whip (or maybe a punch/slap) followed by a male voice crying out "uh!" I was taken aback, to say the least. I paused on the sidewalk, swivelling my canine ears to localize the sound. Sure enough there was another *thwack* followed by the same outcry. This time I had it pegged.

The sounds were coming from a house across the street next door to a dentist's office. This house is already marked as "odd" in my book. Just a few weeks ago, I came out one morning (at normal commuting hours) just as several police cars, a fire truck, and an ambulance all arrived in that area. I watched as two newly "on scene" police officers approach the house. Soon, paramedics led three people from the house - all walking and seemingly coherent - to the ambulance. I had no idea what the sitch was, but guessed either domestic violence or drug-related acitivity. This was a hard-core turnout of authority for our small town.

So anyway, back to today. My instincts were screaming for me to return to my front porch and pretend to read, whilst listening to the ambient sounds to hear how they progressed. I mean, how often to do you get to observe such things? Instead, I climbed into my car and proceeded to work, opportunity missed. But before I pulled away, I heard a third repeat of the noise, but this time there were multiple *thwacks* and I wondered again if they weren't punches. They were followed by the same "uh!" of the victim. I could see no open windows, through which the noises might issue and no one in the back yard...I thought perhaps it's just a couple of people sparring in some sort of fighting practice. But these sounds were too regular and one-sided for that to be the case. Very measured. And the "victim's" cries didn't carry a note of protest or fear.

So I'm left wondering, my wild imagination running rampant, what the hell was going on? It didn't help that I'd just watched an episode of "Night Stalker" on SciFi, so my mind was in 'dark horrors of the macabre' mode. If you're familiar with this old 70's show, you know the main character (the role that made Darren McGavin famous long before A Christmas Story) is an investigative reporter who's wild hunches are usually right on the mark. It was only natural that my own reaction followed a similar vein. That's pretty much how I react to any strange situation anyway, regardless of what I've been watching on TV.

Was this just a friendly sex game (which I can certainly appreciate) or could there be something darker at work here...? Perhaps someone in that house being tortured to feed some blasphemous horror's thirst for psychic pain? And is there a difference? The curious mind reels. Or, mine does at least.

Weirdness abounds. As Alice Cooper said, 'welcome to my nightmare,' neighbor.

What do you think it was?

Playing on XM: Johnny Cash/Kris Kristofferson