are working again, thanks to this almost-as-cool new template. That is all for today. If you're itching for something funny, check out Steve's retirement party. Also, you might try some Preparation H. Works every time.


After a couple days, the antibiotics stopped making me feel like a sack of drowned puppies on Christmas, but I was still glad to be finishing them on Sunday. Now I'm into the expungement stage, where my lungs attempt to purge themselves of the crap that's making them about as productive as a college student with a laptop and wireless internet in the middle of a three-hour lecture on the socioeconomic impact of potatoes on the Napoleonic regime. I'm coughing a lot. Because it seems like that's the only way for the lungs to get rid of any crap you've foolishly filled them with. The thing about this coughing thing is that I get to enjoy the delicious taste of pneumonia junk. It's fantastic. A little bit like puking blood. Blood that's curdled like six-month-old milk. Solid yet gooey. And it's a taste that lasts and lasts. I just can't get enough. The other cool thing is that the coughing has loosened everything up, so it's even harder to breathe than it was when I went to the doctor because I woke up choking in the middle of the night.

On another note, I accidentally switched to the new beta version of blogger. Yes, I know. And yes, really. It was an accident. But the point is that the new beta version hates me and my template. So commenting doesn't work right now. Don't even try it. It will only leave you feeling empty and alone. Like me.

I'll let you know when everything's working again. In the meantime, you can shoot an email to rob[dot]wordwriter[at]gmail[dot]com.


The Fall Mansion was built by Albert B. Fall in 1907. The current owner apparently hates history. The house is in a serious state of disrepair. So for Thanksgiving, Joe, Jim, Pop and I rounded up the flashlights, renewed our hobo stab insurance, and got our trespass on. Check out more photos on the flickr set, watch the slideshow, or peep Jim's shots. If you're into that sort of thing.


I thought it started in the teenage years.

Now, obviously Ethne doesn't have the syntax and grammar stuff quite worked out. But she came into the kitchen last night just before her bed time and noticed Aimee enjoying a wrap. Ethne noticed the gusto with which Aimee was consuming the wrap, and decided that she wanted a taste, too. So she pointed to the food and asked, "Mommy? Eat?" Aimee denied the request on the grounds that Ethne had just brushed her teeth. Only momentarily deterred, Ethne decided to make her request a little stronger, more of a statement than a question. She pointed again. "Mommy. Eat me."


The doctor called this morning to tell me that he had received the results from the blood tests and x-rays I had done on Friday. The good news is that my red blood cell count, cholesterol, and liver function are good. Really good. My kidneys kick ass. But I’ve been walking around with a decent little case of pneumonia for the last two months. And the medication I’m taking to kill the pneumonia makes me feel worse than the pulmonary invader itself. It’s like the antibiotics are trying to purge the infection through my bowels. It’s awesome.


Thoughts I Had at the Doctor's Office This Morning
1. All these magazines suck. Entertainment Weekly? Slit my wrists already.
2. Damnit, Kate. He's all wrong for you.
3. I wonder what the doctor does while I'm out here waiting. Maybe he has a train set.
4. I think I'm the only person in here who wasn't alive during World War I.
5. I wonder if I'm the only one who's weirded out by urine in a cup.
6. Yes. Blood pressure testing. I do love that dizzy feeling.
7. It sure is cold in here without my pants.
8. I wonder how many of these tongue depressors I can lick before I get a splinter in my tongue.
9. Maybe I should have counted. Call it thirty.
10. [cough] Why do you always have to turn your head? So the doctor can't look you in the eye?
11. He does a pretty good job of hiding those trains.

Thoughts I Had at the Blood Diagnostics Office This Morning
1. Sweet. No copay here.
2. Heh. Phlebotomist.
3. That sign sure makes a big deal about not unscrewing the needle. Why do I want to try it?
4. Heh. Phlebotomist. It sounds like she's going to use a mixer on my brain.
5. Wow. Look at the blood just gushing out of there.
6. What? No juice? No crackers? Nothing? So that's how you roll, huh? Just hit it and quit it.

Thoughts I Had at the Radiologist's Office This Morning
1. I do love this no-copay action.
2. Do I smell cheese?
3. I hope I get to keep my pants on.
4. I wonder if they'll give me a copy of the x-rays. How sweet would that be?
5. No dice.
6. What's with all the questions, lady? You just take the pictures.
7. Radiation. Don't worry, it's cool.

Me: Hey, Brain. What's up?
Brain: Oh, nothing, really.
Me: No, not like that. What's up?
Brain: Excuse me?
Me: We've been sitting here for an hour and a half, and you're giving me nothing.
Brain: You were under the impression that I might?
Me: Yeah. That's how it works. We sit here. You do your thing. I do mine.
Brain: My thing?
Me: You know. That thinking thing.
Brain: So what's your thing?
Me: Me? The physical stuff. Typing. Breathing. Defecating.
Brain: Must be rough.
Me: It's not exactly a four star hotel on the sun.
Brain: Huh?
Me: Gimme a break. Clever is your job.
Brain: Says you.
Me: Well, yeah.
Brain: Look, I'm not your little monkey. I'm not gonna stand on the street corner playing a tiny accordion, just waiting for you to tell me to dance. That's not who I am. That's not what I do.
Me: Heh. A dancing brain. That's good stuff.
Brain: Shut up.
Me: You play the accordion?
Brain: [sigh]


Because American Eagle sells clothes built for a guy just like me1, I was at the mall yesterday during my lunch break. On my way out, I walked past Gymboree2. And I remembered that Aimee had been telling me the other day that The Bean needed some new pajamas3. About twenty steps past Gymboree, I realized that I might be able to find some pajamas there. Maybe4. So I turned around and went inside. And yes, they do have pajamas. They've got pajama sets, one-piece pajamas with zippers or buttons, and even one-piece pajamas with built-in feet covers5. The helpful young woman6 behind the register offered to help me find the size I was looking for. And a cold, painful truth stabbed me in the brain. I had no idea what size I should buy. Yes, I know that baby clothes are sized according to age, but Ethne's small for her twenty-one months7. So when I tried to determine her size by holding a pair of pajamas like a puppet next to my legs, the saleswoman lady girl person laughed at me 8. So I just bought a range of sizes and walked out. The PJs were on sale, but the assurance that I'm a bad father was free.

1 Just like me, except attractive.
2 For those of you who don’t know because you don’t have your own personal pet human, Gymboree is a store for kids. Clothes and stuff.
3 The thing about babies is that they grow pretty much nonstop. One day they fit in your hand and the next they’re accidentally kicking you in the face on their way out the door for high school. Literally and figuratively.
4 Yes, my brain really does work that slowly sometimes. Alright. Most of the times.
5 Sadly, no. They don't have any one-piece pajamas with butt flaps.
6 She looked so young that I thought for a moment that she might work there just for the employee discount.
7 People often confuse her for a fetus.
8 Not like a little scoff. Not even a quiet little giggle. A serious laugh.


Thoughts I Had Last Week

1. (Before the elections) Kinky might be too progressive a name for a Texas governor.
2. (After the elections) I guess Kinky appealed most to the people who didn't care enough to vote.
3. (While delivering positive reinforcement to Ethne for her voluntary potty training efforts) I can't believe I'm clapping for urine.
4. (After a moment of reflection) Actually, I can.
5. (While delivering more positive reinforcement to Ethne for her voluntary potty training efforts) Wow. And now I'm cheering for poop. Parenthood certainly is a slippery slope.
6. (Concepting) A football that looks like a lightbulb. I still got it.
7. (Driving to a lunch meeting the invitation to which I had previously declined) She should have just said that it was free. I mean, damn.
8. (Working on the sixteenth round of client revisions for a project which has lost all meaning) So this is what it feels like to have no soul.
9. (Watching Lost) Damnit, Kate. He's all wrong for you.
10. (Still watching Lost) Yes, Jack. You are the flippin' MAN.
11. (While enjoying the barbecued stylings of a local eatery on the client's tab) I would totally whore myself out for food like this once a week. Writingly speaking, of course.
12. (Working on a post)Human compost is the Cadillac of compost? Ha! What a riot.

this post

is the Cadillac of crappy.
brought to you by the google.

Swiss Cake Rolls are the Cadillac of snack cakes.
Purple martins are the Cadillac of swallows.
Howdens are the Cadillac of pumpkins.
Steel cut oats are the Cadillac of oatmeal.
Hashish is the Cadillac of soft narcotics.
BJ is the Cadillac of squirrel dogs.
Striped bass is the Cadillac of sport fish.
Saab is the Cadillac of cars.
Bill O'Reilly is the Cadillac of idiots.
Manpower is the Cadillac of temporary staffing.
DTS is the Cadillac of Cadillacs.
Pecans are the Cadillac of nuts.
Crunches are the Cadillac of abdominal exercises.
Wal-Mart is the Cadillac of trucking.
235 is definitely the Cadillac of RS-232 chips.
Forest Lawn Memorial Parks are the Cadillac of cemeteries.
Master resale rights are the Cadillac of internet marketing.
NY is the Cadillac of welfare states.
Officer Henderson is the Cadillac of patrol officers.
Mesothelioma is the Cadillac of diseases.
Saliva is the Cadillac of the digestive system.
These forks are the Cadillac of plastic kitchenware.
Human compost is the Cadillac of compost.

Dear Voters,

Thanks for nothing, jerks. All we wanted to do was serve. Help the country run. A chicken on every table or whatever. And all you had to do in most states was touch our names. But no, you went with the other guy.
Now here we are. How are supposed to explain this to our supporters? "Oh, hey. Thanks for all the cash. Sorry we lost. No hard feelings, right?" Yeah, they'll be real happy about that.
And what do you suggest we do for work, huh? You think we can just walk in someplace and get an interview. You wish.
It was the negative advertising, wasn't it? You bought it. Listen, we've said it before and we'll say it again, we had nothing to do with that whole misappropriated money/drug use/racial slur//bribe/stolen state secrets/drunk driving/inappropriate joke/young intern/kitten-fur coat debacle. Promise. The opposition made the whole thing up.
Not like it matters. There's nothing we can do about it now. But just so you know, you're dead to us.

The Bipartisan Assembly of Failed Political Candidates
(Formerly The Losers)

cons first

About a month ago, my phone jumped in the washing machine for a swim. It drowned like a newborn kitten. And for the first time in recorded history, the replacement insurance came in handy. Except that the new phone is terrible. The old one was rugged and tough, courageous in the face of... everything. It was everything I ever wanted in a cell phone I could afford. The replacement, which looks exactly the same, is terrible. It's flimsy and frail, cowering in the face of... everything. Here's a rundown.

Things I Hated About the Old Phone
1. Nothing. Unless you count its penchant for swimming.

Things I Liked About the Old Phone
1. Everything.

Things I Hate About the New Phone
1. It charges on a whim.
2. It turns itself off. Constantly. Sometimes while powering on. Even when it's (miraculously) charged.
3. I've dropped it three times from waist level and nearly 90% of its plastic is missing.
4. Pretty much everything.

Things I Like About the New Phone
1. I can give myself a fun little shock if I lick that little part of exposed circuitry beneath the screen.
2. It doesn't explode on my face. Often.

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