Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Tuesday Psycho Mailchick Update..

I've been very curious,after Friday's little brew-ha-ha with psycho mace mailchick,what the response might be from our beloved U.S. Postal Service.
I mean face it,anytime you're dealing with the lowest level employees of a megalithic ,quasi-governmental,corporate behemoth,you're likely to encounter some measure of resistance.
They do tend to circle the wagons you know...
Birds of a feather,and all that.
I also took note of the fact that on Saturday,we didn't receive any mail at all.
This isn't especially unusual,but my paranoia soars,unfettered..

When I forecast all the possible scenarios in my head,it went something like this;
  • Psycho mace mailchick would arrive at my doorstep,spray me full on in the face with her combination mace/anthrax aerosol dispenser,throw my renewal subscription notice to 'Popular Science' in the mud,and continue on her merry way.
  • Every day,for the next several weeks,I would try to convince my self that maybe nobody has anything of import to relay to me via postal correspondence,and I shouldn't be concerned about the fact that a family of red squirrels have set up housekeeping in my mailbox.
  • The lights would go out,the phones would stop working,and two Sheriffs would arrive at my doorstep to execute an eviction notice,just as psycho mace mailchick was returning three bags of 'accidentally misdirected' envelopes.
  • 'Mr.Sling?..Yes,..we're from The Department of Homeland Security..We'll need you to come with us.'..
Comes Monday afternoon,just as I'm sitting on the front porch chewing on my third cigarrete in the past twenty minutes,the mail truck glides up to the curb,and the gleaming fresh face of 'New Mailchick' bounds up the drive,and hands me the mail with a cheerful,'Hi!..Have a nice day!'..

I find this unexpected turn of events,strangely disappointing.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

A Blogoversary!..of sorts.

This very weekend marks the second anniversary of my blogging adventure!

But not really...

There's probably not more than a few of you that can recall the 'Great Porn Takeover' of my blog back in July of ought-six,and how I had to let all my previous musings just vanish into the ethers.
I mean,I just wish I had some of that stuff handy for easy reference.
Things written in the moment that were metaphors of remembrance that I can reflect on,and savor the flavor of the experience when the mood strikes.

It's kinda like using blog posts as a mnemonic device.
A sort of 'Roy G Biv',or 'Every Good Boy Deserves Favor' attempt to caution myself not to forget,as there will be a test!

Well didn't that sound all cryptic and shit?
..It's not really.
Who among us doesn't squirrel away little acorns of feeling against leaner times?

The joy I consistently find in this blog thing of ours is that on any given day,I can peruse my blogroll and say to myself, 'That's what I'm talkin' about,right there!!'..

It's Sunday,July 27th,2008..And life is good in Sling's Domain.


Friday, July 25, 2008

Neither rain,nor sleet,nor common decency..

Check out Bones,my next door neighbor's ferocious watchdog,behind a 4 foot chain link fence.
He's a full 5 inches high at the whithers,and weighs in at a respectable 3 pounds.
Bones is on the job 24/7,alerting the neighborhood to all and sundry would-be intruders.
It took me 4 months to finally get him to stop barking at me,and another couple of months before he'd garner enough courage to let me reach over the fence,and scratch him behind the ears.

So, I'm sittin' on my couch long about 1:00 PM,and Bones goes on full alert!
I look out my bedroom window,and see the mail truck parked in front of our house.
I see the mail-lady get out of the truck,not with the mail,but a small can of..something.
I lose sight of her as she reaches my neighbor's fence,but Bones stops his barking,and she returns to the truck!

'Son-of-a-bitch! ..She just maced the little guy!..FOR NO REASON!'

By the time I get out the front door,and onto the porch,she's coming up the steps with our mail...and I'm pissed!

'Did you just spray that little dog for barking at you??'

'No!,..I yelled at him'...LIE #1.

'Well what was that can o' shit you had in your hands?'

'Suntan lotion!'.. LIE #2

I look over at Bones,and he's desperately rubbing his face on the grass.

'Is that why he's acting like THAT!?'..

'Yeah,..I yelled at him'.

Okay,I have two choices.
I can snatch her up by the hair on her head,drag her lyin' ass over to the truck,grab her mace,and shove it up her ass!..My first inclination...OR!..

I can look her dead in the face and say,'Yeah..Right'.

I chose the latter.
I also considered briefly,calling her supervisor and filing a complaint.But I reasoned that our little confrontation might be enough to bring her around to some kind of sense.
..Wait a minute,..there's someone at the door.

I shit you not!..

The supervisor came to inquire if I had yelled at her mail carrier!

'YES!..I did!'
It seems little miss mace has attempted to head off any repercussions for her nasty behavior at the pass,by reporting ME!

'Can you tell me what happened?'..

I relayed the story.
How I witnessed her go out of her way to torture a small,harmless beast,for what was clearly the sheer joy of it.

'Well,she said she's been bitten by that dog before and..


'I can't talk to you anymore!..That dog never bit anyone in it's life!
I'm not registering a complaint,but she needs to get a whole n'other route!'..

Well, I stormed in,and Mom o' LK went out and explained to her that I was thoroughly pissed..
It seems the supervisor already had her suspicions about this particular bitch,and just wanted to verify the whole incident.
I just can't imagine she'll be delivering mail in this neighborhood again.
We'll see.

This all transpired while I was writing this post,so I'm not exactly up to speed on my pissed-offed-ness.
I've found it helps me regain some balance,if I pick on my guitar a little.

**Today's Friday Video**

Streets of Laredo/Dust in the wind*

*With bonus mistakes included for your shopping convenience!


Thursday, July 24, 2008

Let's say for the sake of argument,that you're right.

Every day at break time,I get the Rush Limbaugh report.

One of the fellas (NST) has Rush fed intravenously into his head all the livelong morning,and then feels the inexplicable need to repeat everything that sweaty red-faced turd had to say,verbatim,as if;
a) I give a mad fuck,..and,
b) He came up with these 'insights' all on his own.
(What he doesn't know,is that I've suffered the painful experience of listening to Rush on more than one occasion while on an install,only to come back to work and have NST triumphantly regurgitate the whole thing).

I need to digress at this point,in order to clarify my stance on Rush Limbaugh.
  • I think he is a very intelligent man...Articulate,and focused.
  • He's not a half-bad 'entertainer'.
  • He's a lying,hate mongering,manipulative,self righteous asshole,that makes his living,not by using his talents to effect positive change,but to capitalize on the insecurities of those segments of the population that are either too naive,or too weak minded to form a coherent opinion of their own...You know,..the George Bush of radio.
In any case,..today's unsolicited offering.

NST: 'Obama was in Israel,and really pissed off the Israelis..His campaign people plastered Obama posters all over the Wailing wall!..The most revered spot in Jerusalem!!'..

..gimme a fuckin' break.

Sling: 'Okay NST,..is that what RUSH told you?'

NST: 'Umm..no..Fox News'..(a poorly crafted lie,but look at who his idol is).

Sling: (Mustering every last ounce of paternal patience).. 'NST..Think about it...His crew saw all these people gathered together in solemn prayer,and decided this would be the perfect place to get rid of all those extra Obama posters they had layin' around?'..
..'And they did that to accomplish what??..Get the Israeli vote come November??'..

Rush hadn't prepared him for this,'Pull yer head outta yer ass and think for yourself ' type of question,so NST promptly switched to NST's/Rush's, (the personalities tend to blur along these lines), all time favorite rant!..Global Warming.

Rush/NST: 'There's not ONE SHRED of scientific evidence to prove that global warming is a reality!'..

Reality Check: Not only does the entire legitimate scientific community accept global warming as fact,but Herr Bush himself has admitted that it's a problem that needs to be dealt with,in his State of the Union address.

Rush/NST: 'Al Gore blah,and Al Gore blah,and Al Gore blah,blah,blah!!'..
'Academy award bullshit blah,and Nobel prize blah,blah blah'..
(Insert left wing,liberal Democrat slurs as needed to focus attention on anything but the actual facts)..

Reality Check: The academy awards are ENTERTAINMENT!..Period.

The Nobel prize is handed out by the international,left wing,liberal Democrat Nobel Prize Committee,like as if they were candy corn on Halloween..(that was sarcasm).

Back and forth,forth and back,..what's the bottom line?

Bottom Line: Let's say,for the sake of argument,that Rush/NST is right!
Human beings have NO affect what so ever on global climate change.
It's a figment of the liberal conspiracy's imagination.
An undigested bit o' beef...

What's yer fuckin' point?!?..

Are you telling me that there is not one good reason to develop alternative sources of power?
Cheaper,more efficient,CLEANER sources of energy?..
Have you never been choked by the pollution produced by the indiscriminate burning of fossil fuels that clouds our cities?..
Don't for one second try to convince me that's an act of nature.
Are you so friggin' self centered that you can't think past the congested nose on your face about the kind of planet we're leaving our children?

Fuck it,..let's just dig it up,drill it out,and pump it as fast as we can into the atmosphere.
That'll teach those liberal enviro-fascists a thing or two!

More importantly,Rush will be vindicated in the burning eyes of a grateful nation.


Monday, July 21, 2008

I thought war was 'sposed to be good for the economy?

Once again,things have conspired to leave us short of jobs in our little cabinet shop.
We have work lined up,but the recent fires have delayed construction on many of the homes we've scheduled for installation.
Consequently,we're working short days until things pick up.
Yep,..I'll be getting off at noon for at least this week,if not the next few.

I know what you're all thinking right about now.
'Holy crap!..How is Sling gonna afford whiskey and cigarettes??'

Not to worry!
I've worked out a budget that not only provides for rent,but also guarantees that I'll be flush with tobacco,and cheap brown liquor for the foreseeable future!

If there's anything left after that,I'll buy food.


Friday, July 18, 2008

A minor rant,..a little fun.

Let's talk a little bit about racial prejudice,shall we?

Why is it that whenever people discover that I'm of German descent,the conversation invariably zeros in on Adolph Hitler?
I mean;
a) He wasn't even German fer chrissake!..He was Austrian.
A niggling little point of no real consequence to my argument,but still,..and,
2) Holy flyin' crap!..Are there no other Germans in the history of the world that people can draw some kind of benevolent and enlightening contribution from?..I submit:
  • Martin Luther..Religion
  • Mozart..Music,..wonderful music.
  • Einstein..Science
  • Goethe..Literature
  • Babe Ruth*..Sports
  • Houdini*..Entertainment
That's without even trying!
But no,..it's always gotta be about the rotten apple,and I just don't like it!
I fully expect everyone has the right to be proud of their heritage.

It does seem,I know,that stereotypes tend to be largely focused on the negative.
Tools of the ignorant,used to build monuments to hatred...This saddens me.
It saddens me because I think there are things inherent in our ascension that deserve to be celebrated.
You'll have to decide for yourselves how this might apply to you.
As for me,two words..
German engineering!
..end of minor rant.

Well dont'cha know that like so many of us here in these Newnited States,there was bound to be an Irishman in the mix.
Or more correctly,in my case,an auburn haired Irish lass.
This comes as no surprise to me,as I find myself fatally attracted to red-heads.
With any luck at all,..they'll be the death of me.

Comes also,and thoroughly contrary to my thick-necked German propensity for strict adherence to formality,a little tune that I just can't help but wanna dance to!..

'Good bye Mrs. Durkin..The Wolfe tones'..

*Houdini and The Babe were first generation German-Americans.
At least George Herman Ruth was,..I just don't know about Harry.
I blame my complete lack of precision on this subject to the Irish in me


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Pensive Tuesday..

First of all,I went all day thinking that today was Wednesday.

The days of the work week have an attitude,that I think just about everyone can relate to on some level.
An internal time clock that loads up,in Indigo flavored numerals,marking the progress of our accomplishments,and running the gamut from 'Monday Blues' to 'TGIF!'..

I'll get over it.

But I did happen to note that,had circumstances not altered cases,today would have been the occasion of my 37th wedding anniversary.

On this day,in 1971,a young soldier and his child bride pledged their troth to one another.
I remember her,bright and beautiful,standing by my side at the altar.
I remember the look of absolute trust her eyes betrayed,as we took our vows.
I can recall,in fine detail,the cross-hatched inclusions of our simple wedding bands.
My Godparents as witness.
Our mothers holding hands in the well worn Oaken pews of the small Unitarian church...

A generation has passed,and I can still see these things as vividly as if they occurred only yesterday.

I just can't always remember what day of the week it is.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Sail Away..

I was pretty excited when I found out that I was going on a most unusual install .
Typically,we'll drive out to the job site,back the trailer up to the house,unload and install our product,and be on our merry way.
But not today.

Our task this day was to replace all the cabinet doors and drawer fronts in a house boat,floating gracefully on our very own Lake O-Town!
I've been around the lake,but never on it.

..Here's the entrance to the marina,where we'll load our tools and materials onto a ferry that will cart our happy asses out to the customer's houseboat..
Normally,this time of year,these sailboats would be out and about.
But the smoky conditions are keeping all but the hardiest sailors at home.

I guess these guys are wonderin' where all the tourists are.
Next time,I'll think to bring some bread crumbs.
Welcome to the 'hood!..Now all we have to do is find the right street.
Fortunately,our Captain knows this pond like the back of his hand.
We arrived at our destination after a pleasant 15 minute cruise.

This is the view from the back porch..
Okay,..we came here to work after all...

We set about replacing all the doors and drawer fronts on these existing cabinets.
These are what we call 'paint grade' doors.
The customer will paint them as they wish.
They are built with beaded MDF (medium density fiberboard) panels set in Poplar frames..An inexpensive way to remodel.

..sorry about the poor quality of these photos,but this is the best I could do, given the tight space,and dismal lighting.

The whole operation took about an hour.
The happy owner passed out sodas while we waited for the ferry to come pick us up...Hey!..That's my reflection in the sliding glass door!

We waited,and enjoyed the view for about 20 minutes until our ride back to shore arrived...That 'helicopter' lookin' object at 11 o'clock is a dragonfly.

As far as I'm concerned,this was an enjoyable day off,with pay!
..makes me just wanna sail away.

Have a great weekend kids!

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Thursday, July 10, 2008

A fledgling video theif's first attempt at transformation..


The Cat Days of Summer..

I've been a little irritable of late,what with the smoke,and oppressive heat we've been experiencing.
There just seems to be a general feeling if malaise permeating the household.

It occurred to Lizzard King that if we are feeling the blues, our good friend Gizmo must be really miserable trying to keep cool,under the circumstances.
So he carted her off,lickity-split to the groomer for a more Summer friendly makeover.

Here's Gizzy,sporting her brand spankin' new 'Lion Cut!'..
Surely,she'll be better able to enjoy her Summer activities,having been shed of several pounds of excess body hair.

Look!..Even now,with new found enthusiasm, she is about to leap into cool and confident action!
Will she stalk a pesky rodent?
Pounce on an unwary 'jay?..
Scurry after the proffered ball o' twine???

..I'll keep you posted on further developments.


Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Fireside Chat

It seems we're experiencing 'the Summer that never was' here in the North State.
Smoke and haze from the numerous wildfires in the area have kept the skies above O-Town saturated with ash for the better part of a month,and yesterday,it got worse...
The above photo was taken outside our shop at 12 noon today.What you don't see here,is the ubiquitous flat-top mountain that should be dominating the horizon.

While the loss of property has been kept to a relative minimum these past several weeks,record high temperatures (in the one-teens),low humidity,and winds gusting up to 40 miles an hour provided conditions for the perfect firestorm...More than 40 homes were consumed just last night!

The worst of the fires stands at 0% containment,even as we speak.

Guess I really can't bitch about the friggin' perpetual stench of burning countryside in the face of what others are dealing with,..so I won't.

***In Other News***
I've passed this road sign on my way to work every day for three years,and never really read it 'till today..
It appears that if you are in a vehicle more than 15 inches high,and 5 feet wide,you're just up shit creek!..

Sometimes,..it's like that.e that.


Sunday, July 06, 2008

4th o' July..

We had a terrific time doin' all that patriotic American type stuff you do on the 4th of July.

Lizzard King did his magic with burgers and dogs (sorry Speck) on the grill,mom o' LK toiled all morning preparing her patented 'to-die-for' potato salad,and some friends stopped in to join in the celebration.
Long about dusk,we toddled our selves out to the O-Town Dam to catch the annual extravaganza!..

LK has a pre-determined secret spot to park,directly behind the dam.
The uninitiated will spend 3 hours trying in vain to reach the top of the dam,and 3 more hours trying to get back down the hill after the show...(your time may vary).

..break out the beer and soda,kick back in our lawn chairs,and enjoy the show!

It was short,..about twenty minutes,..but very sweet.
What with all the ballyhoo over wildfires 'round these parts,I figure we were pretty fortunate to have any kind of display at all.

And guess what!!..They managed to pull the whole thing off without burning down the entire Pacific northwest!
I knew we could do it..
Take that,you Secret Fraternity of Assholes!

Just in case these totally manipulated,and shamefully re-touched in Photoshop stills aren't enough for you guys (Sheesh!..yer killin' me!),I've included the Reader's Digest condensed video version,for your shopping convenience.

I hope this post has found you and yours in the best of health,and holiday spirits!
As for me,and yet again,life is good in Sling's Domain.


Friday, July 04, 2008

Baby steps..

Today's Friday video is brought to you by the music in my head.

I heard this little tune sung by Arlo Guthrie quite a ways back in the day,so I just assumed he wrote it.
Turns out,and after no small amount of research,he had learned it from Pete Seeger.

Well there ya go!
Who doesn't recognize two of the most influential folk artists of our time?
..okay,..probably a lot of youngsters,but still,I'm trying to make a point here dammit!

Digging deeper into the genealogy of the thing,I discovered that it was in fact written by a guy by the name of David Mallett...never heard of him.

Even still,I'm pleased to let him speak for me.

'Inch by inch,row by row,
I'm gonna make this garden grow.
All it takes is a rake and a hoe,
and a piece of fertile ground

That's how we get things done kids.
A piece at a time,one day at a time.

The Lord loves a gardener!

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Wednesday, July 02, 2008

I'll bet they even have a secret handshake.

Sometimes,I think that there is a secret fraternity of assholes.

They hold their clandestine meetings in no-smoking,no-drinking,no-parking,no shirt no shoes no service,keep off the grass,don't feed the animals,no-loitering,no refund without a receipt,no tickie no shirtie,no fishing,no swimming,no laughing out loud establishments,where they begin the festivities by reading the minutes of their last asshole meeting;

..'Bob made a motion to forbid anybody on the planet from wearing flannel pajamas,because flannel makes him feel all itchy'..
..Motion carried!


Once the minutes have been heard,they set about the business of sucking the life out of life in earnest.

'The monthly meeting of the incredible assholes is called to order!..Is there any new business?..
The chair recognizes Schmendrick'.

'I'd like to discuss options for dealing with the wildfire situation in NorCal..
You know,there are 3 major causes of wildfires.
Power tools and machinery,lightning strikes,and arson..How can we use this information to insert our arbitrary assholedness into the lives of everyday folks?'..

'OOH!...Pick me!!'..

'The chair recognizes Schmuckfield'..

'It's fourth of July weekend!..We could ban fireworks!..'Cause..you know,..we could argue that 8 year olds with sparklers are a menace to the safety and security of our homes and businesses..Plus,it has the word 'fire' in it.
That'll scare the hell outta the old folks!'

'All those in favor of bringing to a screaming halt,a tradition that has delighted the citizens of this country for two centuries,just so we can point disapproving fingers at our neighbors,and pretty much reduce the significance of Independence Day to that of Groundhog's Day,..Say 'aye'..

..'Motion carried'.

**Today's bonus recipe***

Dry ice bombs:

Place several shards of dry ice in a plastic,two-litre soda bottle.
Add 3 ounces H2O,and tightly secure cap.
Throw it way up high,and run!..

It makes the most satisfying BOOM!

Happy Fourth of July kids!