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Shipping News

August 18th, 2017

Bright people, when they struggle with something, will seek out tools and techniques that help them manage more easily. V has a lot of trouble spelling, and so to help, he’ll often use a dictation app to help him get from his thoughts — which he can easily verbalize — to the written form.

I was working with him on a book report on a nonfiction book about pirates. One of the headings on his template was, “What did you dislike about this book?” He decided the detailed drawings of different types of ships and their parts and pieces. This is heartbreaking to me, because I could spend all day studying diagrams like this

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School Drive

August 10th, 2017

It’s the first full week of August, and school is back underway. V is a big middle schooler, which to him means the freedom to mill about aimlessly before classes start in the morning, severely limited recess, and authority to use the sandwich press in the cafeteria at lunchtime. Two positives to one negative — not bad.

He was initially upset with the combination lock instructions, being given a combination with numbers like 18 and 32, and a lock that DOESN’T EVEN HAVE THOSE NUMBERS! Once I translated 18 to “go to 20 and then 2 more ticks” and did similars for the other numbers, it was clear as could be. He worked on it over the off days and had his opening time down to 13 seconds before the first day of school.

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Rolling Rolling Rolling Through the Summer

July 25th, 2017

For the first time in many years, we went on Summer vacation without taking the helm of a sailboat. Instead, I took the helm of the motor van San Clemente for a tour of the Pacific Northwest. We started out north of Seattle, ferried through the San Juan Islands of Washington, crossed over the Vancouver island in Canada. From there, we crossed British Columbia and visited several Canadian National Parks in their Rocky Mountain range. Finally, we circled back into Washington for a few days before heading home.

It was an excellent trip. The people of Washington and British Columbia must be like “aw, yeah, hmmmm…” every time they go somewhere for the scenery, as it’s very hard to match what they left behind. A lot like us in Louisiana sampling food at our travel destinations. (I will give the nod to Pacific oysters over Gulf oysters, but on the other hand, you pay for them.)

Several times, I’ve said that you could pick the ugliest two mile square of British Columbia, plop it down where the town of Shreveport sits today, and you would have a U.S. National Park that would draw millions of visitors every year. We did better than that, by accidentally falling into a promotoional year for Canadian National Parks where all admission fees were waived for their sesquicentennial. Woo hoo.

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The Worst Copywriter In History

May 19th, 2017

My sister recently left a job where she worked for a real nut.  Their business was butt wipes.  Pretty simple.

Below is the text from an email that boss man sent the advertising agency describing a commercial he wanted to make.  All wording and grammer are exactly as he sent them, with the excitation that I’ve replaced the brand name with blanks.

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Filth

May 12th, 2017

I’m starting today’s post with pictures of our nice, clean house.

Yes, this is exceptional, but it gets this clean at least once a week. The kids will probably spill a cup of flour all over the kitchen within the next 120 seconds, but for now, this is an accurate view.

There’s a reason that I feel like I need to emphasize our cleanliness.

And it’s not because my sister’s cleaning lady posts before-and-after pictures of her work on her website. That’s the most horrifying thing I’ve ever read. (And yes, she’s made the cut more than once.)

It’s because Kolya jumped out of my Jeep at school drop off this morning, and sprinted full-bore toward the elementary building. Excited to tell his friends and teacher that he got a fright this morning.

He picked up his backpack to leave for school, only to find it occupied by a giant, dying rat. Fuuuuuuuuck!

Let’s back up a little.

Mrs. theskinnyonbenny was working yesterday afternoon, when she spotted a rodent head poking out from the hole in the wall from where a bunch of network cable comes into the room. She sprinted out of there, and we had this text exchange.

I searched for it when I got home, but I couldn’t find it. The cat was just lounging on the couch with no worries at all. I figured it poked its head out took a peek, and left. To be safe, I crammed the hole full of steel wool (rats hate it, I am told) and covered it up. Then, I put down a glue trap and locked the room up.

Kolya and I checked the trap this morning. I didn’t have my glasses or contacts on, but I could see well enough to know there was no rat on the trap. Had I been wearing them, I would have seen that something had gotten stuck there, eaten the cheese, and then pried itself off. But I didn’t.

Fast forward an hour, Kolya screams in fear of the rat in his backpack. I tossed it out the door, and it lay on the ground barely breathing, almost as big as the cat. It was clearly poisoned and close to death, so I’m glad the cat didn’t get into a tussle and poison himself in the process. Kolya was a little shaken up on the ride to school, but began to perk up when I asked if he was going to tell his friends or keep a lid on it.

It was a truly nasty morning, and I hope to never have a repeat of this.

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Thoughts About 3 Songs From The 80s

May 12th, 2017

We are driving to school. Close to being able to drop V off. We’ve been side by side in the car for almost an hour, and we’re still flipping through radio channels, trying to find some decent tunes that we aren’t tired of.

For the 6th or 7th time in the hour, we land on the hip-hop oldies channel. It’s “Banned in The U.S.A” by 2 Live Crew. We keep it on.

Maybe it’s the current state of national affairs. Maybe it’s that I’m a sucker for stories where the little guy sticks it to those who make the rules. I was tickled pink by The People vs Larry Flynt, Private Parts, and Straight Outta Compton, despite not being a big fan of Hustler or Howard Stern. (I do like a little N.W.A. now and then.)

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Read This One Aloud

May 1st, 2017

If I lived up North, I would drive up to New Hampshire every couple of weeks to buy a hamster. Just so I could post pictures of “My New Hampshire new hamster.” Or, “My new New Hampshire hamster.”

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Filing Cabinets

April 20th, 2017

At one of the offices I visit for work, there are these filing cabinets, which have stood ajar for close to a year. Handwritten signs forbid closing them. I close inspection shows that the keys are in the locks. I can’t figure out why they need to stay open. If I were an employee there, I would be bitchy about how trashy it all looks, but as a contractor, I don’t feel like it represents me in any way.

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