Wednesday, November 11, 2009

New Home!

We're moving the blog!

I've done a lot of thinking over the past few weeks, and I've decided to take the blog to Wordpress. It's got some better features on my side of things, and I think you'll like it there. For the people who read us on Facebook, the page will stay the same, and so will the Twitter updates - just the blog address.

So switch your RSS Feeds & bookmarks to: - because that's where we'll be!

Leave us a comment at the new site letting us know how we can better serve you and keep you coming back!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


It's been a hiatus to say the least. After a two and a half week vacation, I am back in action in Northern Virginia, and happily living with my wife, Mrs. Buck. I'm already eating better food for dinner, and the Mario Cart competitions are something fierce. Wedding festivities in Pennsylvania were an epic four days of family, friendship, feasting, and booze. I think it would be fair to say the past few weeks were the best days of my life. Therefore, I shall share a few observations from my wedding and honeymoon experiences.

1. Snorkels are not good shot glasses.
2. Good friends get you drinks at your reception. Responsible friends get you water at your reception.
3. Wedding rings are universally awkward for all guys to wear the first month of marriage. It is our common bond of unity, and we can spot each other a mile away.
4. First Class air travel is not claustrophobic, and it gives flight attendants a purposeful job.
5. Although I have been to a mere minority, I'm confident that Maui is the best island in the world.
6. Hawaiian food is scrumptiously delicious.
7. Hawaii weather flawless. Always.
8. A Jack o' lantern carved out with a blow torch is Halloween done right.
9. People do not give you gifts you want or need for your wedding.
10. I like marriage.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Perspectives on a Poultry Harvest: Bill E.

The chickens were ripe for the plucking, and my good friend Ezekiel Mossback was feeling opportunistic. He raises poultry out in Hoosierland, and he needed my help with the slaughter, scalding, plucking and gutting. They say "Early to bed and early to rise makes Bill E. a pre-loader at UPS and very tired", but I made the trek out to Ezekiel's homestead last Friday night for a Saturday Poultry Harvest. Steve's owner Lucas met me out there. It should also be noted that the Willig Matron lent us her artful plucking services for the day.

The day began with what will be forever immortalized (I know that's redundant, but the point needs to be made) as the "Traffic Cone Fiasco", or TCF. For slaughter, the chickens are placed headfirst into upside down sawed-off traffic cones. I had been telling Zeke that his plans for suspending them by taping them to the barn posts would be fruitless, but his country folk stubbornness would not mind my city-slicker attitude. He kept insisting that things be done "the old farm way" and that he was not about to ditch 300+ years of Mossback farming tradition on account of some hokey dude from the 'burbs. But when the pole-taped cone was squeezed too hard to allow a single chicken head through, he begrudgingly allowed me to go with my brilliant idea: a pair of 2-by-4's strung between the barn poles between which the traffic cones could snuggly nestle. I spend so much time on this anecdote because it was really only meaningful contribution I made the whole day.

I caught a few chickens with Z-Moss and wheeled them back to the farmhouse, where I pondered the wonders of man-made technology (redundant again) as I watched something called the "Plucker 3000" skillfully remove the feathers from a freshly dead bird and give Ezekiel a half-way decent backrub.

It could have been my destiny to slaughter chickens that day, but I instead chose what I am going to call "Ignorant Manifest Destiny" or IMD, and decided to help gut the chickens.

As I leaned over a sink with a sage Mossback elder for upwards of the next 9 hours, severing chicken legs and pulling off their heads, scraping my fingernails into their putrid innards, hoping that a stray squeeze on my part didn't cause some leftover excrement to sputter out of their anii and listening to Lucas spew a variety of oaths whilst trying to coerce the scalding water to EXACTLY 145 degrees, I reflected that it is indeed natural for the human to work. Not in the Communist sense of Marx, but in the Christian sense in imitation of St. Joseph. Work in this context is not the telos of man but the result of love, which is man's true telos. I also reflected on how long it would be before I could bring myself to eat chicken again.

Actually, it was today, when I ate a chicken patty sandwich at school. Though it was a processed mess with no resemblance to the wholesome free-range meat of Mossback's farm, it was the first step on the journey back to enjoying chicken.

That night, Sage Elder Mossback took us to eat at the local tavern in appreciation for the help. Actually, he was just really hungry and too tired to cook. None of us ordered any chicken. I was effectively asleep before the meal was finished and we drove back. In lieu of our usual night of Mossback Music, I dreamt of a local bishop playing "The Night they Drove Old Dixie Down" on the piano for the entrance song at a mass to make a facetious point about good liturgical music. I blame the poultry.

Needless to say, I have baited my breath for the summer poultry harvest. Give Mossback a ring on the tele for the finest free-range chickens east of the Mississippi.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Lucas and Bill - Roommates turned chicken butchers

So, this weekend, Bill & I have agreed to spend our time with our dear old friend Ezekiel Mossback assisting him with the unfortunate task of slaughtering, plucking and gutting chickens for sale to the general public.

While initially, I agreed to help with this endeavor because I enjoy spending time at & helping out with chores at Ezekiel's farm, I am now reconsidering the enjoyment factor of such activities. While the end goal of prividing healthier farm products to those who are more health conscious is noble, there lies a responsibility with the person responsible for taking the lives of the chickens. Taking a life is a serious thing - and it must be done with the utmost respect for the God-given gift of life.

That said, I'm kinda scared. I'm scared that I will not be able to fulfill this duty properly - I'm afraid that these animals will suffer unnecessarily on my watch, and I'm not sure how comfortable I am with that.

That said, I will try my hand at butchering chickens this weekend. I've watched a few instructional videos on the most humane way to bleed out a chicken, and the care needed in the situation is humbling, to say the least. Hopefully, I can emerge from this experience with some good stories to tell & cross off one of the lines of my 'bucket list'.

I hope I don't puke my guts out. We'll talk Monday.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Thursday Rant

Judge Judy, that lace collar isn't make me take you seriously...

Every day around lunchtime, I mosey on over to the break room. With such amenities as a refrigerator (albeit gross and infested with month-old leftovers), a microwave, tables and chairs, the setting is perfect for enjoying a delicious Healthy Choice meal. This affords me the chance to take a break from the mental strain of a stressful work day, collect my thoughts, and prepare for extreme productivity in the second half of the work day (like blogging...).

Occasionally, I find myself as the only person in the break room, allowing me to control the complimentary 19 inch television mounted to the wall. In such instances, I enjoy the freedom to watch ESPN and catch up on all the tired, overplayed stories like Brett Favre and his waffling over whether or not to retire (they're probably still talking about him right now).

Finding myself as the only break room occupant, however, is rare. Most times, I am forced to share my quiet time with coworkers. Now, don't get me wrong. I like my coworkers - and I'd like to think they like me. My issue is not one of like or dislike though. Most times I head to the break room for lunch, other people have comandeered the break room for their evil ways. Evil meaning that they have the remote, and I don't.

Problem is, I don't think many of them realize that the television programming they watch greatly affects my truly trivial opinion of their tastes. If you, dear readers, were to collectively ask me what would be on the TV in the breakroom if one of my coworkers were in control of the remote, I would definitively answer "fake court show depicting uneducated low-income people involved in ridiculous disputes", I would be 100% right, except for the other 50% of the time there's "World's most extreme explosions" enveloping the screen.

Now, I don't doubt that these shows can be entertaining, even addicting to some, but the level of serious fanship that exists not only at my workplace, but undoubtedly in countless others to these "Judge Judy"-style shows reflects negatively on my perception of the person and how well-educated or well-rounded they may be. This applies not only to fake court shows, but reality shows as well. When did we become a society that entertains itself by watching the drama created by mixing together a bunch of seemingly incompatible and combatitive personalities?

Regardless, people (my coworkers especially!) need to realize that the content of the material they are ingesting into their heads is, while entertaining, severely influencing and helping to form my ultimate opinion of them. Brett Favre needs his airtime, and I aim to give it to him.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

My brain hurts...

But what if...I don't know what would that?..

That Pinnochio is a LIAR.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Well, DUH...

 *Picture "borrowed" from

"The Eater"

Fearsome. Infamous. Grotesque. Horrible.

All of these adjectives have been used to describe that which we dread: The Eater.

But have we been to harsh? I'll tell you what happened to me yesterday. I saw The Eater. It's true. It was The real Eater himself. He's actually not half-bad. I was patrolling the forests when I saw him. I was petrified. I knew he saw me as well. I fell to my knees and begged, nay, pleaded for my life.

But it turns out The Eater was actually not interested in consuming me at all. He was actually a pretty chill sort of dude. Sure, he was The Eater and he even enjoyed it, but really the economy had him looking for work just like everyone else. He just wanted to follow his dream and earn his money making music. Can't fault a guy for that. Hell, this cat even had some chops. I know, I saw it later.

Now, I'm not saying he might not pop off and just eat one of us one of these times. I mean, that's what he does. But the guy really just wants to make music. As long as I gots my guitar, this one-eyed, one-horned, flying purple person is safe.

Ohio's Real Problem

Ohio needs to step up and grow a pair.

At this very moment, a debate rages over the possibility of allowing casinos to open their doors for business within the borders of the state, the proponents promise the creation of 34,000 new jobs in the state, effectively "solving" the unemployment issues we are currently facing, in addition, the incoming tax revenues created through the tourism & entertainment appeal of the casinos would stabilize the struggling local economies. Opponents of "Issue 3", set to be voted on tomorrow make the case for keeping casinos out of the local neighborhoods because they claim that the figures of new jobs and projected revenue are grossly overstated, not to mention certain provisions that give complete controlling interest of the casinos to certain people - who happen to operate outside the state of Ohio. 

This is a trivial debate, and not something with which I will waste any more time. 

No, the real problem with Ohio's economy & overall resident happiness lies in the quality of life being provided by business owners in the state. While the casino debate rages on, there are more pressing issues that need to be addressed by both the state house & senate. 

New Author!

I'd like to take this opportunity to welcome my good friend Ezekiel Mossback to the ACNS family!

Ezekiel lives on a farm in rural Indiana where he currently raises chickens and pigs. I have visited him on numerous occasions to learn more about the art of farming and raising animals, and I am held in rapt anticipation for this coming weekend when I will have the opportunity to help slaughter the chickens and prepare them for sale to the general public. Great care has been taken to make these the healthiest damn chickens you've ever seen.

As you can probably see, the 2 posts below are stories from the farm. I'd like to have Ezekiel write a loosely regular post on the blog describing his experiences on the farm. That way, us city folk can learn to appreciate the natural beauty and order that surrounds and permeates our physical world. And maybe learn how to make moonshine too...

The Blackhead Pig

There is no kindness in nature. Those effete, modish inheritants of an overly technological world who hold, usually at no fault of their own, the sadly mistaken assumption, handed to them by whimsical progressives—self-styled as such largely because they have progressed beyond reality-- and fostered by a few decades of nineteen-eighties-and-nineties public schooling and the television specials they watched after that schooling from three-thirty until their parents got home, that at least some animals are ‘nice’, had better avoid taking any vacations near the ‘natural world’ or their mistakenness will soon be sorely so. Animals are not intrinsic victims, but very often, if not normally are wicked, stupid, loathsome things intent upon the destruction of others and usually themselves. Anyone who thinks animals have rights has never discussed it with any animals, for if they did, the animal would bite their mouth off and end the conversation. ‘Animal Rights’ fideists have never met this blackhead pig that lives on my farm.

I went to buy feeder pigs with my friend Will. I forgot to tell him that the best way to carry a pig is by the back leg, and when he grabbed the blackhead pig around her middle, she began her shrieking, suicide inspiring scream that is still continuing as I write this two months later. The other pigs make somewhat pleasant grunts, and when worked up at my proximity, and the anticipation of food, they might emit as much as a grunting-snort sound. The blackhead pig condemns everything about me with her squinty, contemptuous eyes, and her pointed ears that curl back and around her head much like Satan’s horns must do. While I try to pass by, feeding the chickens, she screams commandingly at my cardiovascular system, frantically demanding it jack up my blood pressure until my brain explodes out of my eyeballs. If this fails, she increases the decibels of her deflating-balloon-combined-with-a-falling-bomb-and-locomotive-brakes cursing screech, mockingly daring me to shoot either her or myself in the face.

I tried to tell myself, in my better moments, that it was not her fault that this was her only means of communication. Perhaps she was the victim of her own limited, wretched vocabulary. I tried scratching her back, patting her while I fed her apples. My hours of kicking back the mud pushed over the electric fence in the pigs’ clever attempts to escape-- doubtless conjured by the blackhead pig in order to seize my farmhouse, kill me in my sleep, and begin running the farm—and my back-breaking labor repairing their warm straw hut that they insisted on destroying so they could spite me by freezing to death, were rewarded by the blackhead pig’s increasingly clever attempts to eat me.

For example, one sunny afternoon, as the birds cheerfully chirped death threats to other birds near their territory, I strolled over to the pigs’ pasture to give them a bucket of corn. They love corn more than I love Krispy Kreme donuts, but not, apparently, as much as they love human flesh hot off the femur. The pigs were nowhere to be seen, which is unusual because they are normally frolicking about the pasture pretending they are chasing down little kids, or ruling the world. Thank God I am just enough smarter than the pigs that I suspected that something was up. I closed the gate behind me, and still they lay hidden. I poured out their corn, and they remained silent. It was only when I walked out into the pasture, seemingly cut off from ready escape that they poured forth from their den, the blackhead pig emitting her gleeful ring-wraith siren, and surrounded me. They had not accounted for my easy ability to step over the electric fence, and they gnashed their teeth and kicked each other for overlooking this obvious flaw in their perfect crime.

Every increase in my attempts to coddle and care for the pigs has been matched and raised by the pigs’ efforts to eat me. Since the overt attempt upon my life, they have chosen to keep their cards close to the chest, only casually opening their jaws and nonchalantly putting my leg between them. Never do they act violently enough that it will demand conclusive reciprocity on my part: after all they know that they only grow more valuable as they put on meat, and it would take a clear and present danger from them to make me butcher them before they weigh enough.

Animals are not kind, and they have no ‘rights’. Without the human person to care for them, to domesticate them, to drag them into the fire-light as White Fang was, animals trample each other, lay down in puddles to drown themselves, poop everywhere, seek out heavy objects to crush them, and eat their young. The ‘natural world’ is a free-for-all in which everything competes in exhibiting a newer and more absurd form of dying. The human person struggles to eke out a tiny corner of kindness, sense, and creation, before the ragweeds and multiflora roses of dying drag it down. Animals do not deserve our care, they have no ‘rights’ before which the human will must pay respect. However, our dignity demands that we care. Human rights and dignity are only kept alive by responsibility, and in caring for things, in tending our gardens, we safeguard our own human rights, and pay respect to the grave duty of being a human being. Failing to care for those things that are our responsibility does violence to our rights, to our dignity and freedom. Without this being truly human, the chickens would all be torn limb from limb by possums. Imagine a world where possums roam at will. 

Disgusting. I have to go now; I hear the blackhead pig screaming for her dinner. If I fail to return to provide this essay with an adequate conclusion, it is because the blackhead pig has eaten my fingers.

John 3:19

I arose long before dawn, in the fog enshrouded dark, from my warm air mattress alongside the radiator. Consoling my groggy innards with coffee as hot as the morn was not, and as dark as the window through which, with sleep begrimed eyes I watched, I balanced my shotgun, breeched, upon my knee. For some time I sat upon a stool, watching nearsightedly for some stirring near a white fence that loomed monolithically in the mist.

The hillcrest became a black line contrast. A buck placidly eased along it. Another followed. Then suddenly my eyes were snatched by the trap at the periphery of my vision. In it wiggled a white- faced vermin. I had the satisfaction of having stopped this threat to my chickens, but was nevertheless burdened by the duty that I now had to execute.

I donned my marine-corps sweatshirt and stocking hat, belted on my jeans, and shut the breech of my shotgun with a determined click that announced its latent power. Too powerful: at the gun-case I traded it for a restrained but equally reliable .22. In my rubber boots I rounded the house. The possum faced me from its cage, a white circle of fur with malevolent black angled slits of eyes that held hatred and sure knowledge of what was to come. Not afraid, not sad, the possum awaited me head-on, angry that it had been suckered by this inferior creature, but resolute in the knowledge of its fate.

"Im sorry possum," I said, looking it in the face, and took direct aim at its forehead. Josie the cat appeared, rubbing around my boots and looking at the possum. "Go on Josie," I said, not wanting her to see what I had to do, nor to be startled by the gunshot. She did not listen, so I walked a distance to get her to follow. I left her sitting near the porch. I had to act now before she returned to be an outward judge of my inward compunction.

I clicked back the safety, took four quick strides towards the possum, formed an E upon its face with the sights of the rifle, and shot it. The possum whipped around, dying. I had hit it straight through the head, but I wanted no risk of it suffering, and fired twice more. The second shot blew its jaw half way off, and it bled heavily. One sure look confirmed the deed, and I lingered not one second more. I safed the rifle while turning immediately around, and as I stepped grimly, one step after another, I could not keep my head from hanging.

It is not possums' fault that they are evil, but nevertheless they are evil. they would gut 50 of my chickens in a few minutes, just for the fun of it, and eat only a mouthful. It had to be done.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

I'm starting to get the feeling...

That this 'Higgins' character is a figment of my imagination. He's the 'Tyler Durden' of ACNS. I've got some 'homework assignments' to take care of...

Exciting Business Opportunity!

As any mildly internet-saavy person understands, unsolicited emails from people who are waaaay to excited about what they have to offer are usually some sort of ploy to steal your money or identity. Ususally.

About once in a person's lifetime, there arrives an opportunity. I'm not talking about your usual daily opportunities to drink an exceptionally delicious cup of coffee or put on your favorite pair of pants. No, this is much bigger - this is a ONCE IN A LIFETIME opportunity. The proof is in the description - these things only happen about once in a lifetime or so - Redundant, I know, but I want to make sure you understand.

Since I work in the pre-owned medical equipment industry, these unsolicited emails show up in my inbox on a regular basis - usually, they end up right in the digital trash can for virtual incineration. Most of these emails are foriegners looking to steal equipment from my company by "purchasing" it with no intention of paying for it. But I just recieved one that was different. This email is from a supplier here in the US that's going to make me a rich man. I'll let you have a look, just promise me you won't tell anyone about it. I'm going to suprise my parents with a new house with all the sweet cash money I'll be rollin' in. Check it:

Mr. Hanessey,
Rocket Sprockets, Inc. is an international supplier of partially used medical equipment. We supply over one billion hospitals, clinics, prisons, and resorts with middle-of-the-line syringes, plastic tubing, spoons, bunson burners, and douches. I am also proud to say that we have practically cornered the market on prior-owned proctological equipment!
We are interested in using you as our regional consultant for acquisitions for this region. You would receive commisions for all acquisitions made within this solar system (excluding Uranus, and Pluto which scientists have conclusively proven to not exist).
If you are interested in starting a new and exciting relationship with Rocket Sprockets, Inc., call me any time, night or day and we can 'grease the wheels' for the most lubritive business adventure of your life!


Roger D. Riordan
Staff Manager

It's time to start anew. I know that THIS is what I was made to do - my destiny, if you will. That, and I've always wanted to work for a company with a catchy name like "Rocket Sprockets". True happiness is right around the corner with this promise of a 'once in a lifetime' opportunity & I'm not going to let this pass me by...

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Foods I love, part I

As an addition to my running posts regarding "Foods I hate" (part 2 here), I have decided to escape the often-negative voice that many of my posts embody and show my positive side. Therefore, logic would dictate a post about foods that I love. These are foods that I am always willing to hastily absorb into the bottomless pit of my beautifully man-figured body at any moment of any day. I will share with you the foods that make my world go 'round, and since I am quite eligible at the moment, a sneak-peek at the quickest way to my heart.

Skyline Chili
Yeah, I know there's 850 calories in just one of these bad boys (not to mention the 320 that go with the obligatory cheese coney appetizer), but I just can't get enough Skyline chili. Who would have thought that a soupy meat sauce flavored with cinnamon and chocolate laid to rest on a thick bed of spaghetti noodles and topped with copious amounts of shredded cheese could be so addicting? If you don't like Skyline Chili, we're no longer friends. If you dare suggest Gold Star Chili as an acceptable substitute for Skyline, I will punch you in the kidneys. Skyline or Bust.

Chipotle Burritos
You think Skyline is bad for calories? Try one of these giants on for size. According to the "Chipotle Nutrition Calculator 2.0", my weapon of choice boasts 1015 calories in a single burrito. On certain occasions, I have been known to toss down 2 in one sitting, but since that borders on gluttonous behavior, I have decided to henceforth refrain from such activities. Throw in some of the Chipotle Tabasco sauce and I'm in heaven.

What do you get when you take a bunch of leftover scrap pork, mix it with steel-cut oats & shape it into a fryable loaf? That's right - God's gift to Cincinnati. At first glance, Goetta seems like a way for peasant-like people to get the most out of all of their butchering scraps by seasoning them and adding oats as a filler, but this is far from accurate. No - Goetta is for the highest of classes. Originally labelled as a breakfast food as a substitute for sausage or bacon, goetta has broken from the stereotypes and forced it's way into the lunch/dinner/midnight snack discussion. It's gotta be Glier's Goetta though...anything else pretty much tastes like crap.

Here's another example of a food item that has broken from the breakfast-only realm of sustenance to an all-day-any-day type of nourishment. So many people will agree with this one that I will just let it ride...

Wanna see a food that has a bad reputation for no reason? Broccoli's your man. However, I've stuck with it through thick and thin, and we've become best buds. No matter which way it's prepared, I'm always up for a little broccoli action; raw, steamed, casserol'd, baked, fried, boiled - all are delicious. The only exception to this is the occasional large stem with which some heads are endowed. The simple remedy for this is to cut them in cross-sections and pretend they're little edible turtles. That always makes my day just a little brighter.

I could go on and on for days about foods I love, but I will end my list here because I'm salivating too heavily to continue. Stay tuned for another installment of "Foods I love"!

Domo Arigato

You know what makes me sick?

You know what makes me so angry, I just want to go out and buy one of those large flying saucer looking vacuum cleaners that finds its own way to all the dust in my house while I sit around fattening myself up on Tabasco Slim Jims and Mountain Dew?

This robot.

Really, what's the deal here? What? Are humans not good enough to dance goofy around a spinning football? Does the robot really do a better "The Fish" than a real human being?

I see what's really going on here. The evil modern media has long been trying to anthropomorphize animals. Now NFL on Fox has taken it a step further by trying to convince us that this dancing image of a robot is basically a person too. 'A little harsh,' you say, because a lot of people have said that to me lately? 'No!' I say, because I've seen the evolution of this accursed robot. First NFLOF had this stupid robot mimic a football player warming up. Then it moved on to more human activities like writing poetry and finding true love. Now it's dancing. What's the end game here? Is every object going to be said to possess humanity except humans?

Wake up, America!!

I got so mad watching this robot dance during the Bengals butt-whipping of the Bears, that, feeling like DDR's version of John Connor, I grabbed a football to prove that at least one human had moves more smoove than a robot. Lucas jumped up to join the resistance, and Steve got so hyped up by our action he flew across the basement to see what was happening. Lucas sprained an ankle, I lost all sense of direction, hit a wall and knocked myself unconscious, and Steve got so covinced the football was actually a dustbunny that he ended up popping it with his fangs. Scared him so bad he shot off quicker than Astro Boy. We haven't seen him since. Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto, for taking away our cat. I tell you NFL on Fox is just wrong.

This is Bill E, native human, E off.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Many apologies...

Apparently I don't have a clue what's going on with my own blog. Our new author's name is Higgins, not John Mikel or whatever I said before...That's right - Higgins.

I don't think he has a last name, but it definitely isn't Mikel. Although "Higgins Mikel" would sound pretty cool and probably pick up ladies with ease.

The Challenge

I made a bet this weekend, and probably one that I will lose. This weekend, I spent some time with a man highly regarded by those of us here at ACNS Enterprises, LTD, and slightly less importantly, the entire world. I'm always searching for ways to improve the "ACNS Experience" (as I like to call it), as well as increase the amount of readers who want to hear what all of our authors have to say.

The aforementioned bet is less of a bet and more of a challenge, in which my personal part is minimal, since I was the "challenger" instead of the "challengee". The aforementioned man is none other than Mr. John Mikel, who happens to be none other than "Buck's Coolest Person of October". The challenge is that if John were to start writing for the blog, his primary job would be to double our readership in a month.

Now since we don't have ads on the blog, the overall traffic numbers don't really matter to us/me at all. It's really an excuse to add another writer to the blog. I expect to read pee-your-pants-at-work quality copy from a distinguished and well-educated man. The snot-bubbles-blowing-out-your-nose-because-you're-laughing-extremely hard-while-you-have-a-cold posts are coming. Prepare yourself for something slightly less than what you expect from me on a daily basis and let's welcome this handsome sonufagun to the blog. We'll see what sort of traffic-attracting powers he can bring to the table...

Wednesday, October 21, 2009


I would just like to thank those of you (and yes, there were a couple) who expressed real concern for Bill's & my relationship. We're doing just fine now, and no, I don't need a place to stay for a few days while we both "think things over" or "let the situation cool down a bit"...

For those of you that actually did think that Bill & I were fighting, The joke is on you. It just seems eerily silent around here, save for Brian's post breaking the awkward exchange of faux venom.

On another note, as Brian mentioned, it is in fact my birthday today. I have turned the ripe old age of 26. I want to give a shout out to Teddy who bought me Chipotle for lunch today. I would also like to give a shout out to my coworkers for buying me this wonderfully delicious cake decorated like a hamburger...complete with real sesame seeds on the bun...

All's Well That Ends Well

I think an apology of my own is in order.

Growing up, I was always taught to be the bigger man, and in this case, I have failed miserably. I now realize that my ad hominem attacks on Bill regarding him stealing my hat were unfounded and untrue. I love that hat so much, and it really hurts me to not be able to wear it anymore.

Bill, I'm sorry. I've been very short with you as of late, and I've failed to respect you despite our disagreements over the past few weeks. I don't know how we got here - It's obvious that our personal feelings of lonliness have pulled us apart, and I hate it. Love is about giving, and all I've been doing is taking from you and everyone else. I've been dragging you down with negativity and spiteful actions, which are no good for either of us, much less Steve. you can tell that he just can't stand being around us by the way he yearns to leave the house anytime either of us walk by a door.

I need my friend back too. Please forgive me and my shortcomings, Bill. I know it won't be easy to heal these wounds, but I'm willing to give it 110% to make things right with you again. I bought Braveheart on VHS today. Can you say roommate movie night with a couple beers? Let's make this work.

Yeah, You're Probably Right

Ok, I got a good night sleep and did some thinking. I'll admit I've been a little harsh lately. Friends have even told me so.

I think you're right: the problem is that we haven't been talking. Remember all those long discussions we used to have over cocoa on those cold winter nights? Steve purring at your feet and Lifetime on in the background? I miss those days. Maybe they'll come back now that winter is on it's way.

It's been so frigid in the house lately. We walk past each other like the other isn't even there. When we do talk it's only to scream accusations. We've become overly dependant on our other friends and Mincher's getting annoyed. I try to be insensitive just to take the edge off the loneliness. I put on the de-caf coffee just so you'd notice me again. I admit it was a cry for attention. I need my friend back.

On a side note, if anyone, ANYONE, out there has Lucas' Nebraska hat, please give it back to him! I'm beginning to fear for my life! I slept with the light on last night just so he wouldn't come in with a knife!

To Bill:

Dear Ungrateful Jerk,

You think this is a little game? You think I'm just playing around? Well, I'm not.

I don't know why you insist on making this a public issue. This would have all blown away like a fart in the wind if you had just posted a real apology instead of some half-hearted sarcastic on your opinion of me, which I wish I would have known about earlier. Your passive-agressiveness is very becoming of you. I bet keeping all those feelings bottled up inside is pretty satisfying - especially when you can take somebody down with you when you finally explode.

To re-iterate my point in my previous post - I've been nothing but good to you, and all I get is stabbed in the back in return. Go ahead, give that knife another twist. I'm a glutton for punishment.

If you had only told me of these "issues" of yours before they became issues, things could probably have gone a lot smoother - I'm completely willing to change & improve myself - unlike SOME people. In the year-plus that we've been roommates, I've been nothing but upfront with you. I hope you realize and appreciate that. Not likely.

And yes, this DID start with me losing my Nebraska hat - or rather YOU stealing it. I know you're jealous of how cool it is, and how good I look with it on. Don't blame me for my style. Maybe show some originality and get your own style instead of physically stealing other people's.

Sorry if it seems like I'm over reacting, but I wish you would just understand my to me!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

An “Open Letter” to Lucas

Dear Blog Czar,

I quickly recognized alright. Quickly recognized “Senor Thin-Skin” is too angry about his Nebraska hat to see straight.

I see what this really about: you’re angry about the coffee, is that it? Well maybe if you were a little nicer to me in the morning things like that wouldn't happen. Yeah, it's time to grow up, Dude. People make mistakes, alright? If I’m a little too irked by the way you constantly conform yourself to web norms by doing things like writing open letters, and I take it out on-line, is that really your business? Who cares if it’s “your” website? It's not all about you, ok? That's the "real" story. Chill, man, seriously. Pull out your hair (good luck with that, btw. Got some tweezers, Cue-ball?) about people misusing Steve's name instead.

And I am NOT insensitive.

MY side of the story

Some people are so damn insensitive. You know what? I didn't even ask Bill if he wanted to write in the blog. He asked ME to write on MY blog. Of course, in order to avoid a potentially awkward situation by saying no, I had to agree. I have known Bill for nearly 14 years, and I knew, I just knew that it would turn out this way if he ever started writing on ACNS. He undermined my authority, and acted like it was some sort of joke. He's always acting like it's some sort of freaking joke. I'm about to pull out my hair I'm so frustrated.

You really think that apology was sincere? I have a hard time believing anything that comes out of his mouth lately. He's been intentionally screwing with me for the past week, and I've had enough.

Bill, I have HAD IT! I'm tired of waking up to you making decaf coffee in the mornings, not pulling your weight around the house, and especially for hiding my Nebraska hat - that's just plain mean dude...I expect a real apology this time. And this time, lets hear the real story about what's been going on, instead of some concocted, convoluted story portraying me as a "Blog Czar" or some sort of crazy tyrant. I've been nothing but generous to your sorry little @$$.

You better recognize quick.

From the Bottom of My Heart

Ok, so APPARENTLY an apology is in order. It appears that a guy can't really write what he feels on a blog about how some guys feel. Or maybe it's just that my feelings don't matter and Lucas' feelings do.

ANYWAY, Mr. Blogczar McSensitivepants seems to think I somehow outright attacked him on ACNS today writing about open letters and he had just wrote an open letter and he's all like "boo-hoo" and "people won't understand because you're cool and I'm not". (Verbatim. Cross my heart.) I don't know at all what gave him the idea that I was going after him. As I CLEARLY said here, I respect people who do what he did.

But what I hear is that ACNS is supposed to present a "United Front" because "Unity Means Productivity" and "We're All In This Thing Together" so therefore "We Can't Have Any Backstabbing From Disgruntled Minions Because The Readers Will Think We're Too Morally Bankrupt To Read" and "I Can't Find My Nebraska Hat, Thief".

Is this all true? Debatable, but perhaps my digression is in order at this time, since I don't own this blog. I have to admit that Lucas did win it in a poker game with a Columbian Special Forces Op. who had a cat named Steve, so maybe I should give him an apology.


I should be clear to all ACNS readers. Lucas' and my relationship is actually GREAT at this time. Never better. I'm going clean every inch of this frickin' house right now.

An Open Letter to People Who Write Open Letters

Dear People Who Write Open Letters,

I want you to know that I dearly respect what you do. Please know that I am all about grassroots social change. Letters have always been a part of grassroots social change, and now there is the "Open Letter", which allows not only the recipent to know the writer's views, but many others as well.

But, dear People Who Write Open Letters, the people to whom you address your open letters never read them. Now I may just be cynical and pessimistic, but I think that you know this and write the Open Letter anyway. If the person you're claiming you're writing to would actually read the letter, you wouldn't have to make it open in the first place. That's a little underhanded of you. Why not take the completely honest path and just tell the people who are actually going to read it what you think?

I suppose there's the million to one odds that the person your Open Letter is for will somehow, someway, stumble across your letter and take the 10 or so minutes out of their busy schedule to go through it. I don't think it's likely, though. I think it's even less likely they would change their minds on whatever matter you wrote them about, knowing that you just criticized them in front of the whole world (theoretically), so let's just say it's probably a 10 million to one odds.

People Who Write Open Letters, please know I'm not making a judgment on your person or your views. I just think that your medium for sharing information is pretty deceptive: your intended audience is not who you say it is, at least in my view of it. If you disagree with me, please let me know: I am willing to dialogue with you and I KNOW you're reading this.


Bill E.

An open letter to our readers

Hello dear ACNS readers!

First off, I would just like to thank you for your support of ACNS!! What started as a little blog about my cat has become something much more - an online community of sorts where some of my closest friends and I can share our thoughts and dreams with you all. It's been a wild ride so far, and I can only hope for an even better future!

The reason for this letter to you, dear readers, is to figure out how to best commemorate the 6 month anniversary of the opening of our proverbial doors. Next Wednesday, October 28th is the big day for all of us to reminisce about all the memories we've shared together, as well as the growth that we've experienced. To date, our biggest day came on September 16th, when we had 225 page loads from 89 unique visitors! I don't know about you, but I'm impressed that something I started from the comfort of my bedroom in a dingy 2nd floor apartment has grown into something larger than even I could imagine, in all my ambitious glory.

In these 6 months, with the help of our ever-increasing ad revenues, I have been able to hire 5 other writers to the blog to increase both the quality and frequency of our content. While I can't pay them enough to entice them to write full time, the extra cash keeps them coming back - In this economy, every little bit helps, and I'm glad to be the guy able to help them solve their problems. This is a stepping stone in my goal to become a full-fledged blogger, with a team of minions to help line my pockets.

What I ask from you, valued customers (because that's how we view each of you here - as customers...), is to please leave a comment letting us know how you think we can improve this endeavor and leave this space even better than we found it. When I stumbled upon this domain name, it was a wasteland, and we've turned it into an oasis of ridiculousness and enlightenment. With your help, we can make this the online version of the pre-recession Dubai. Tell us what you want - After all, if you don't come here, we won't make any money!


Again, thanks for your readership, and here's to the next 6 months!


The real truth about Marriage

Goodbye single people! As I am about to journey off into the world of marriage I am encountering some stiff verbal opposition to my vocation, especially from co-workers. In order to properly grasp their perspective I am going to take a step back from my own motivations to get married, and instead see the world through their eyes to better understand the impact of spending the rest of my life with the soon-to-be Mrs. Buck. Based on all of their comments I have been able to draw the following conclusions that may be beneficial for you to understand as well. I found all of these things rather eye opening, and they almost made me take a split second to reconsider my vocational decision. Almost. The list of married truths goes something like this:

1. Over a long enough period of time a woman will suck every ounce of independence out of a man and destroy his individual identity.
2. Television, videogames, and excessive drinking will be pushed to a low priority
3. Sex becomes limited to one person forever, and it will become less frequent and more boring with each passing day.
4. A shared bank account is equivalent to digging a bottomless pit and throwing all of your hard earned money over the edge.
5. The new unbreakable rule with the rest of the female population is Don't Touch. Just Look.
6. Financial priorities will be geared towards the future rather than the present.
7. The proper age to discern marriage is no sooner than 35, and should be closer to 40 if possible.

I hope this was as helpful to you as it has been for me. Despite all of these warnings I am strongly considering going forward with the wedding this Saturday, and taking a risk at the expense of all 7 items above for the possibility that something greater could occur. You can call me rebellious or stupid for giving up such personal freedom, but I feel pretty good about this whole married thing at the young age of 26, and I think Mrs. Buck is going to be the sweetest addition to my life since the Teen Age Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon back in 1988.

Monday, October 19, 2009

1st & 10

This is not a news flash by any means, but I wanted to get this out there so that any Defensive Coordinator left unawares can know the truth. Granted, said Defensive Coordinator must not watch a single second of game film not to know this simple fact.

If the Cincinnati Bengals have the ball ...

and its 1st & 10 ...

no matter what quarter or how much time is on the clock ...

they will run the ball ...

without fail ...

straight up the middle.

Don't let the Bengals fool you with their stellar stable of stupendous receivers. If it is 1st & 10, they won't use them. Who needs a 50 yard pass down the sidelines when you can average .05 yards per carry on 1st & 10? Who cares if you put 18 guys in the box, the Bengals will still hand it off straight up the middle.

Just wanted to clear that up, should anyone who doesn't live in Timbuktoo not see that simple fact.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

It's about time

It's been said that 'Time waits for no man'. Yet man usually has to wait for a long TIME. I think that Time has been shoving us around for too long. With that said, here is my triumphant inaugural post for ACNS:

Several years back, every once in a while someone at whatever workplace I was at would say to me 'I think I've seen you some place before'.. And this happened enough times to make me give all of this some idle thought. And I came to this conclusion: In the not-too-distant future, time travel will become possible and I will travel back to this decade (the 2000s--what else can this stupid decade be called?) for God knows what purpose, if any.

How ELSE would explain why these people claimed to have seen me before? Maybe they HAD! Here's my line of thinking back in 2003/2004 (when I seriously considered this nonsense):

-None of these people who told me this had met one another.
-The reason why I myself had not seen any of my 'doppelgangers' is I (my future self) took great pains to not be seen by me (my past, er then-present self). Think of Back to the Future Part II when Marty McFly goes back to 1955 and sees himself during his first 'trip' to 1955, playing 'Johnny B. Goode'. He made it clear that he didn't want his guitar playing self to see his 'present' self. If I traveled back in time to within my lifetime, I too would take pains to not run into me.
-I'm usually not a good conversationalist. And 'Present me' talking with 'Future me' would go something like this:

"So what's it like in 2025?"
"Don't bet on the Sox in the 2023 World Series."
"You didn't answer my question."
"I don't have time for this, kid." (Walks off mumbling darkly to himself, probably bitter about the BosSox losing in the 7th game.)

Then 'Present me' would want to get even with 'Future me' by making a lot of stupid decisions just to cause a lot of potential headaches for 'Future me' down the road. Because nobody messes with me, see? Not even me. (Hm...wait a minute...)

So fast forward to late 2009. No more 'sightings' of me's have surfaced. And if people mistook me for someone else when I was 20, I don't think my future time-traveling self would resemble me enough--I'm rather more portly now. That and I don't think tampering with God's domain in the space-time continuum could ever become reality in the future, no matter how far technology has progressed. There are limits to humanity's capabilities, after all. (Just look to our spiritual and moral compass, Barack Obama. He couldn't even bring the 2016 Olympics to Chicago. With friggin' Oprah's help, no less!)

Friday, October 16, 2009

Buck's Coolest Person of October Award

Quiet. Collected. Cool. At first glance he might appear to be just another average guy, or even just another average seemingly old man. However, diving deeper into the mystery, there is more than meets the eye with this run of the mill, twenty seven year old, high school IT director. What happens when you find someone who has a knowledge base that rivals Wikipedia, a music gear collection that rivals your local Guitar Center, a sense of humor that is dryer than the Sahara Desert and more shocking than a midget on a segway, a style that should be sponsored by H&M and Brooks Brothers, a taste for liquor that rivals a room full of seasoned politicians and CEO's, and a sweet beard that makes you want to give up on all of your futile efforts to ever be awesome? The answer is simple. You raise your glass and offer a toast to Buck's Coolest Person of October. He's a man for all seasons. He's a man for all Mikel's. He's John Mikel, and we here at ACNS are proud to know a guy who can rock a harry back like a pimp'n fur coat on a hot summer's day. John Mikel, you are cooler than a 64 ounce 7-11 cherry coke slurpee, and we freakn' salute you.

Give a round of applause for...

Our new author Chris!

You might know something about Chris, since I have his blog Willkommen zu Vergessenheit linked over in the side-bar. Chris likes all things German, so he brings a little more culture to the blog than I could ever hope to.

Anyway, I heard he really likes comic books and knows everything about all of them. Go ahead, try him. He'll kick your ass with his brain.

A little song just for you

So I hop of the bus yesterday as I usually do, preparing myself to cross a few lanes of traffic in order to safely get back to my house. I usually take this time to check out the cars, see if there are any really cool ones, as well as to see a small glimpse of others driving habits.

Well yesterday I saw in all of its glory what can be so eloquently termed, "The Distracted Driver". Being in good mood, as I generally am, it came upon me to sing a song about this particular situation. Normally only my wife gets to hear my beautiful voice sing out songs of joy that I have made up on the spot, but today dear folks you get to share in this fun.

The title of the song will be "Pedestrian Rage". I think the tune should be a country tune, just because that happens to be my genre of choice. If you want to adapt it to rap, emo-punk, or classical ... be my guest.

It goes like this here:

There you are, cell phone in your right hand
Don't know how you do it but I'm sure you have a plan
Just popped a cigarette right in your mouth
You have to light it up, but I don't know how
Oh I see your in your left hand there's a BIC
And as always I'm amazed by that trick
You wanna turn left, it could help with a signal
But you are too busy to deal with that
Now you're reaching for something else in your car
And you're slowly rolling into the middle of the road

(banjoes take off) Beom bom bom bom bom bom booom booomm booom beeeem beem beem

Who needs two hands on the wheel?
We drive to be free and that's how you feel
Who cares if you tick everyone off?
Drive where you want because you think you're the boss

(hold the words out long and slow)
And now I'm driving and smoking
and talking and dialing
and swerving and flipping (the bird)
because I do what I want when I'm out in my car!!!!

Okay so I don't think it will ever go platinum. But I think it sounds pretty nice. Meanwhile, I'll just stand here and wait for the sign to tell me when its safe to walk.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Sweet new idea: "Social Networking"

I consider myself an entreprenuer-in-waiting, a caterpillar developing in my cubicle-cocoon to one day be able to spread my beautiful wings and fly solo. To drink the nectar of the fruits of my own labor & to laugh in the face of failure while making my own way are some of my heart's deepest desires. In other words, I don't want to be held down by "The Man". I want to be "The Man" - a benevolent dictator, if you will.

There are some obstacles to this lifelong dream of mine, specifically in the way of ideas. In this fast-paced, technology-driven culture, new and unique ideas can be few and far-between when the profit potential of any given idea is taken into consideration. In this dog-eat-dog world, any risks taken must be carefully calculated and weighed against a benchmark of success, with the possibility of failure as a real, tangible option. In short, finding an idea that has a chance of working is HARD!

Difficulty is merely an obstacle on the road to success - it's not a show-stopper, it's not a deal-breaker, and it's definitely not a reason to curl up in the fetal position and suck your thumb while wishing you were a child again in the fort you built in your room where all was right with the world and the only concern consisted on whether or not you could keep the sheets dry that night because mom & dad were getting annoyed with your bed-wetting habits. Rather, difficulty is what makes each one of us stronger and more aptly prepared to achieve the levels of success we desire. It builds character and feeds the soul.

In my lifetime of searching for the one idea to put me over the top, I have suffered periods of extreme frustration, humiliation, and countless freak-out sessions. Those days, my friends, are over. I have a wonderful new idea for a website, and this one should put me over the top and propel me to the top of the business world. Here goes:

It would be an online "community" of sorts, where people can "friend" other people and see what they're doing at any given time. Members would have their own unique "profile" in which they interact with other people & their respective profiles. They would have the ability to post little messages on each others' profiles & even upload pictures and videos where they can "tag" their friends. In essence, it's a site where people can network in an online social setting. I think this "social networking" thing could possibly take off to heights that nobody could ever imagine. I'm not sure what I'll call it yet, but I keep coming back to "MySpot" and "Facepage" as the two that hit home for me. Maybe I'll enlist the help of a few focus groups to help me name my new company - We all know that focus groups are the core of the business world today. Like little lab rats for companies, except I wouldn't inject them with cancer like some companies do to actual rats...

I fully expect this endeavor to take me to the pinnacle of the tech business world. I haven't recieved any interview requests from Fast Company or Inc. Magazine just yet, but I expect both to come knocking at my door any minute. With an idea this original, they better jump on the ball. I'm a rising star and I won't stop for just little ol' anybody...Hop on my bandwagon people!

What Do You Use That For???

Do you ever do something simple and mundane, such as going to the grocery store, and have it turn into some sort of mind blowing, life altering, monumental experience? This past Sunday I went to the grocery store across the street from my apartment and had just such an experience. It started off rather pleasantly as I loaded up the cart to fill my fridge for the next two weeks, and everything was shaping up for a normal shopping experience as I approached the cashier. This is when things began to go slightly awry, and it took several hours of reflection to take in everything that happened.

I put all of my groceries on the conveyor belt, and the young cashier lady began to scan and bag the items for me. The girl eventually got to my carton of Half & Half and stopped to give me a puzzled look. In a rather negative tone, she looked and me and asked, "what's this for?" as if to really be saying, "why in the world would you ever use Half & Half." I was a little taken back as I thought to myself that maybe she only drinks her coffee black and looks down on those of us who use creamer. Before I could dwell on it further, I answered with some timid hesitation, "It's for my coffee...?" I was expecting a clever reply to antagonize my Half & Half consumption, but instead I was encountered with something far more shocking as I stood in line that Sunday night at the grocery store. It was as if I had given this girl some valuable information, or answered the question of all questions as she responded, "OHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!! So that's what that is for! I always wondered." Now, I don't know about the rest of you, but I would consider Half & Half to be a commonly known consumable item to coffee drinkers and non-coffee drinkers throughout the world. There are pretty good odds that if you have ever gone out to eat in your life there has been a little bowl with Half & Half creamers at your table. Regardless of this reality, I find it absolutely shocking that you would ask a customer at a grocery store what something is they are buying because there are not too many scenarios where you could ask such a question and not look like an idiot.

As I recovered from this moment, my story only continued to progress, and I was not out of there yet. She cashier girl had finished scanning all of my food so I handed her my savings card to scan. She took the card, but it didn't look like she scanned it, and then she handed back to me. I noticed the total price didn't go down at all, so to be polite I asked her if I had any savings. Her response only scared me further as she said, "Oh, do you have a savings card?" I handed it back to her and she went ahead and scanned it. To be fair, I'm convinced she did not have any type of disability, and if she did I recognize this post would come across as harsh. The fact of the matter is that this girl was THAT dumb.

At this point it was time to pay so I swiped my debit card, entered the pin #, and hit OK for the total amount. The girl asked me if I wanted debit or credit and I said debit, even though I had already selected it and entered in my pin. There was a pause and she asked me yet again if I wanted debit or credit. On the THIRD TIME she asked me, I finally let her know that I had already chosen debit and paid.

I left to drive home a little flustered, but at the same time very amused at the whole experience. When I got home and unpacked I realized that she did not bag any of my chicken or ground beef, and I had paid for food I didn't even get! Maybe she was having a bad day and just hit one of those points where everything she said or did was completely stupid. Maybe she really was just that stupid. I don't know the answer, but I do know I am going to spread the word to people like the cashier girl and anyone else who needs to know... Half & Half is 50% milk and 50% cream that is commonly used in coffee around the world.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Iron & Whine

I've spent a lot of time with Lucas in the past year, seeing as how we've lived under the same roof for that year. While Lucas is a model citizen in most respects (actually, his taste in food might as well have landed him on America's Most Wanted), one area in which he is sorely deficient is that he does not care to own a good iron. Not only does this make him a bad person and unmanly, it has really caused me grief over the last 12 or 13 months.

Now, anyone who knows me knows that I am a man of impeccable fashion sense. I was born with an innate knowledge that brown shoes don't go with grey slacks or black belts. I never wear white after Labor Day. Basic rules of fashion are 2nd nature to me. I fact, I've given Lucas so many fashion tips that he's lately taken to calling me "Mr. Advice". This being the case, I can never wear anything wrinkled.

In a fit of rage this past Sunday, fueled by Lucas' iron leaking all over my clothes while failing to vanquish a single wrinkle, I hurled it at the wall and (using very mild expletives) vowed to go spend serious money on the best iron I could find. One that would get the job done. This led to hours of Internet research to see what amazing gadgets the ironing world could offer me.

*A word to the wise here: simply typing in "iron" into google brings up things like the table of elements and golf clubs. You must specify with "clothing iron" or "clothes iron" or something. I could have saved myself about 25 minutes if I'd have just thought ahead.

**Actually, the wise may already have figured that out. Just call it a word to the not-so-bright.

- Sears offers the Rowenta Advancer Iron, which looks spiffy, but in my book is all bark and no bite. Plus you're paying through the nose ($120-$150) for a product its users have only given 2 out of 5 stars. AVOID THIS ONE! The three week trial I gave it only affirmed my belief that's it's full of crap.

- Craigslist was A JOKE. It's really hard to track down a decent iron there. Just skip it when you're looking.

- I found the Euro Pro Shark Steam Iron at It'll run you about $130-$100 but I hear it gets the job done. I ordered it for a trial but I couldn't figure it out because it looks too weird. If you prefer a more traditional iron then STAY AWAY!

- I kicked around my old standby till I realized the awful truth: They don't sell any irons! How misleading is that?!?! Bunch of liars. They certainly won't be getting any more of my BEES KNEES.

- The Naomoto HYS 58 Gravity Feed Steam Iron really KICKS SOME serious patootie, even being in the price range I wanted ($440-$400) with bells and whistles like a water bottle and a contured wood handle. I was actually about to purchase it, but then I realized it sucks 110 volts and 880 Watts, and with Lucas being so energy conscious lately, I had to back away. Plus, it's 4.5 pounds. Now, I'm not a wuss, but that's a little heavy.

The research was really fun but my clothes were getting more wrinkled by the minute. I was constantly sweating and babbling incoherently. Out of pure desperation I walked into Meijer's and bought the first iron I saw, which actually turned out to be a steal. I was enchanted by the neon lights and the "anti-drip" guarantee stamped on the side. I paid $50-$25 bucks (a little low, I know, but I'm spending all my money on food now) and so far it's been one of the best purchases of my life, placing a "Jaguar's Jockey Shorts" on my 1 to Gucci Loafers scale. It was such a knock off that I couldn't even find it on-line, but I'm telling you: my first ironing session with it was a breeze.

Foods I hate, Part II

Welcome to part II of "Foods I hate".

In the first installment of "Foods I hate", we learned about my profound disgust for tomatoes, mushrooms, mayonnaise, organ meats, strawberry jam/jelly & and seafood. This part delves further into foods that spoil my fragile palate. Enjoy, or actually...don't, because what I'm about to lay out is NOT enjoyable.

Flavored Coffee
Usually I like my coffee with sugar and cream like any normal human being, and if need be, I don't mind drinking it black. In fact, drinking black coffee makes me more of a man every time I participate; my manly mane of chest hair growing thicker with every sip. However, there is a mainstream movement inside every "gourmet" coffee chain like Starbucks or Flying J to strip this wonderful drink of its beauty and desecrate its very core by adding flavored syrups to "enhance" the taste. Coffee tastes perfect, unless when it's transluscent. In that case, you should add more grounds to the original batch and run the coffee through again. Coffee can never be dark enough.

That Popeye is full of sh--. I could eat McDonalds every day and pop a few 'roids every hour or so and get jacked like crazy. Sure, spinach might be considered "healthy" and "good for you", but so are Flintstones vitamins. If I were a horse I might like raw spinach, but I'm a human. I like hamburgers. Cooked spinach is even worse - if someone were to come up to you and say "Hey! Eat this steaming pile of green mush and tell me what you think of it", I have a hard time believing they wouldn't get smacked in the face with a rolled up newspaper. Don't bring that crap near me or I'll kill you.

Peas are like disgusting Dippin' Dots. Whoever thought that it would be a good idea to eat a bunch of green mushy balls off of a plate is severely mistaken. How am I supposed to even start to eat them?! I used to lump grean beans and peas in the same category or disgusting vegetables, but then I came to the light after tasting some delicious green beans. I won't be coming to that same conclusion with peas. Every time I am confronted with peas on a plate, I'm not sure whether to stab them with a fork or scoop them with a spoon. Any way you cut it, peas make everyone eating them look 2 years old again. The only acceptable use for peas is to split them and put them in soup. Even that smells bad, but at least I don't end up smashing it on the floor.

Indian Food
You think you're all "artsy" and "cultured" by going to that Indian Bistro uptown in the college district? I've got a news flash for you. You're not. You're gross. Don't argue with me. If I ever start dating a girl who suggests an Indian restaurant as a date idea, we're probably going to break up on the spot. Unless they have hamburgers.

I will never consume anything named "Baba Ghanoush". I don't think I've ever knowingly eaten eggplant before, and I think it's best that we never meet.

Feel free to add your own or tell me why I'm an idiot. Except if you tell me I'm an idiot, I'll probably start getting mean. Fire away at your own risk.

Greetings Gone Awkwardly Wrong!

I'd like to bring forward a serious issue going on in conservative Christian circles around the world. If we don't talk about it, then how will things ever change? Yes, I'm speaking about the greeting known as the side-hug, most commonly seen in church groups and communities among all denominations. The side hug is a form of greeting to say hello or goodbye in which two individuals make their approach facing each other. Once the two individuals are close enough, one of the parties does a 180 degree turn so that now both individuals are standing side-by-side and facing the same direction. At this point each individual extends an arm around the other to perform the the side-hug.

The side-hug was invented to prevent the "full frontal hug" which could cause some type of excess physical hugging stimulation. I don't know about how you give a normal hug, but for me it is not ever a sexually provocative experience where I feel my chastity is being put on the line. In fact, if there are guys out there that are so pathetically desperate that they are hugging a girl to get some type of physical arousal, then we have a bigger issue. In this case, it is not the hug that needs to be redirected to some other angle. Instead, we need to kick the crap out of our pansy Christian men out there, and tell them to go on a freakn' date.

The side-hug can also create awkward moments when one person thinks they are getting a real hug and the other person wants a side-hug. In this situation, the person intending to offer a full hug ends up feeling a deep sense of rejection. Other issues are where a guy tries to side-hug a girl and he reaches around too far by accident. Suddenly, the side hug is becoming inappropriate, and defying the very logic that created it. All in all, the odds for an awkward moment with a side-hug are much higher than a traditional hug. I'm sure that Lucas and Steve (both avid Theology of the Body readers...especially Steve) would agree with JPII that our bodies are incredibly holy and good. When something as simple as a hug turns into something that has the potential to be morally questionable, it's time to take a step back and think about how we view the world. As it turns out, the side-hug is more than an issue of etiquette, but a greater issue of examining whether we are living our faith under the law, or whether we are living our faith with the law of Christ written on our hearts.

So the next time you see me, and begin to make your approach, think about what you're really doing before you start pivoting your feet to get in side-hug position. If you can't get over yourself to hug it out, then it's time to bring back the high five or a good old fashioned handshake and call it a day.

That perfect gift

It works for all your friends and family. They will have a blast using it.

It will go great:

Above your grandma's fireplace ...
On your parents windowsill ...
Even in the garden!

I can't believe they haven't come out with this in the past. What a great idea!

Just water and enjoy!

Monday, October 12, 2009

He's back

THANK GOD, and get back.

I'm actually being serious here. What would we do without this man on our computer screens and televisions? Public television stations need to book "Honey Blo" ASAP for their funding drives. If you pledge $5 a month for a year, just $5 a year people!, you can have the same "Funky, Funky soul" that James Brown, Janet Jackson, Michael Jackson, BB King & "My Band" all have. Remember - these are some funky, funky people with a helluva lot of soul. Call and pledge now so we can keep this program on the air!

Indian burial grounds: Boring as hell?

Since I was homeschooled (yes, it's true. I'm smarter than you, and I do have social skills), every family vacation was stripped of the opportunity to sit in my underwear and do nothing in a place other than my house (don't worry, I made up for that when I moved away to college for 5 years). Rather, these supposed "vacations" were about packing as much educational curriculum into the family van and visiting sites of historical or religious significance. With the sheer amount of people crammed into the van, hotels became cost prohibitive, which offered the chance to get in touch with nature at various campgrounds (I'm actually really happy my family didn't stay in hotels on vacation. I know way too many people that have no idea how to live outside their comfortable concrete boxes. Thanks for the sweet camping skills, Dad). At least I got my own tent most of the time because my sissy brother Sam was scared of bears & their sense of smell.

Despite the educational nature of the annual family vacations, most of them were actually quite enjoyable. However, every so often on one of these escapades the chosen site pretty much bombed in the face of history books and old wives tales who praised the happenings at these sights for ther historical significance. One such site turned out to be an Indian burial mound in Southwest Ohio, which happened to be in the shape of a snake. Otherwise known as Serpent Mound. This was (and probably still is) one of the most boring things I have ever seen. Reading through history books and encyclopedias, the mound appears to be Ohio's mini version of Stonehenge or the Great Pyramids, but in reality, it's a squiggly mound of dirt covered in grass. Whoop de freakin' do. I wish I still had pictures of the 6-foot deep hole I dug in my parents' backyard that one time. THAT was impressive...

Now, I understand that there is probably some sort of astrological significance to the snake-in-the-grass, and probably some religious significance to those who decided to undertake such a hunge endeavor as piling dirt on top of itself in a symbolic gesture of who-knows-what, but simply put, it's boring. I don't mean to offend anyone by saying that (I apologize to my throng of Native American readers), but I don't see why there's such a hullabaloo over a snake-shaped mound of dirt. The added on-site museum was at best, slightly over the top.

Anyway, back to my original point - To a man, every member of my family left this site bored and uninterested, and despite the usual child/parent dissension over historical sites, a complete family unity was formed the day we went there, and for once, educators & students both agreed: That was boring as hell.

Friday, October 9, 2009

You might call it a gift

They might want to start calling it a Nobel Peace gift. That would more properly define what the Prize for this year was. To call it an award, or even prize, brings up thoughts of earning said prize.

Now I don't want to be overly negative about President Obama winning the Nobel Peace Prize. Good for him! Heck if they gave it to me I would take it, especially the $1.4 million, happily. I hope he uses both the prize and the money wisely. I can't think of a better PR move for him than to donate that money to his healthcare cause.

Anyway, I still couldn't help but be shocked by this award. In my opinion Obama has not done enough in his presidency to earn this prize.

I will liken it to going to college. Obama receiving this award is very similar to someone just starting college. The person gives this speech before his first day of classes, "I will study hard and get A's in all of my classes. Not only that but I will make our college great! I will be the best student yet, because I am not like those old students. I will work hard and study hard! Trust me."

Because of this rousing speech, the college decides that this student should just get his diploma right away. Even though he hasn't done much studying or hard work yet, the college is sure he will get there. So why wait for him to complete his classes and studies before awarding him? Why not just give the student the diploma up front?

Not all things need to be wait and see, but I believe you should prove you've spread and achieved peace somewhere before earning the Nobel Peace Prize. And from the looks of Congress these days, there isn't going to be any peace there anytime soon.

Heck, Arizona State is holding out on giving Obama a honarary degree until he "earns it".

Well maybe you shouldn't have gotten that credit card...

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Just seems like a bad idea

While I'm not your average conspiracy theorist or even run-of-the-mill over-reactor, however I still can't help but think that this is just asking for trouble.

Basically what is going to happen is they are going to crash a large rocket into the Moon at what one estimate put at 5,600 mph (ie. very very fast). Why are they doing this? The reasoning given is to see if there is indeed in fact water on the Moon. Great! Just what I was wondering about. Why not put a big hole in the Moon, I'm sure no one will care.

Hey what else would we want to spend $79 million on?

Healthcare? Nah ...
The Economy? Not happening ...
A ridiculous amount of Little Debbie Brownies? That might even be a better investment ...

Oh well, I'm not a scientist. What do I know? Well I do know how the movie Armaggaedon ended ...

Weathering the proverbial storm

Well, since all of the other guys I "hired" to write on this blog have disappeared (or are spending their time shooting their resumes to other bloggers in hopes of landing one of those "paying" gigs), it appears as if you, dear readers, are stuck with me and my futile attempts at humor.

While I pride myself on a firm grasp of the vernacular (that's what she said), this job is quite a lot to handle for just one man. With the sudden surge in readership, I am physically unable to keep up with the demanding mob that has effectively stormed my email inbox. Between post requests, hate mail, and marraige proposals from modestly hot women (mainly convenience store cashiers), I find myself in need of a stiff drink in the mornings, just to be able to deal with the pressure. In addition, a budding addiction to Twizzlers and banana Laffy Taffy is making me more well-acquainted with my dentist than I ever desired (Sorry Dr. Miller, you're a nice guy, but I don't want to hang out with you anymore!). In short, life is not the same when you have responsibilities and a reputation to manage and uphold.

How will I "weather the proverbial storm" you ask? Simple - I will keep on keepin' on, despite the best efforts of "the man" we call life to bring me down. I am committed to bringing you, my cherished readers the best damn coverage anywhere of what goes on inside my brain. If, by chance, the others decide to grace us with their presence, I will welcome them back with open arms and empty pocketbook. This blog isn't, hasn't, and never will be about the money. It's the love of the game. I think that's why Michael Crabtree finally just signed with the 49ers after a long-ass holdout. The money didn't matter to that guy, he just wanted to play football. Just like me, I just want to blog. Groove on that.

Until next time, PEACE!


Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Twizzlers: The new crack

They're a conspiracy. They're the start of Communism in America. They're a drug for the general public without the underground market. They're shamelessly out in the open, infiltrating our communities and workplaces with a vengeance. Grandparents give them to their grandchildren, Parents reward their children with them - employers provide them for morale-boosting, movie theaters thrive on their existence, & toothpaste companies & dentists worldwide are profiting from their effects.

Twizzlers are the "new crack", the recreational drug of choice for Americans. Their addictive properties make habits that once started, are impossible to break without professional intervention. here's the kicker - They're not all that good. In fact, they're waxy, they're unhealthy, it's impossible to get just 1 out of the bag at a time because they all stick together, and the red dye makes me hyperactive. Wanna ride bikes?

Don't even get me started on Red Vines.