Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Gifts for Geeks

Currently Reading: The Stupidest Angel by Christopher Moore

So, you've done most of your Christmas shopping but you've still got a few people left to buy for. Worse, at least ONE person left on the list is a geek. What on EARTH do you buy a geek for Christmas without breaking the bank? Well, here's a hint:

You may think I'm kidding but, seriously, giving the gift of soap will not only allow you to cross that person's name off your list, it'll ALSO make the world a better place.

True story here. This afternoon I stopped off at a comic book store on the way home from work. You see, Marvel has been running a special Captain America series that I've been reading and today was the release of number 5 of 6.

So I grab a copy of that and then, because I had the time, I was just browsing the rest of the rack. Wednesday is the day that new comics are released in general, at least for Marvel, so the store is usually fairly crowded.

I'd spotted something that looked interesting on one of the bottom racks so I knelt down to have a look. As I'm flipping through the pages to check the quality of the artwork and to see if it's filled with ads, a geek passes by behind me. Then another, and another. At one point, an uber-geek stands next to me, reading a comic from the TOP rack (I hate it when people are too cheap to buy a comic and just stand there and read). Anyway, I'm checking out a few other issues when all the hair in my nose curls up and screams in agony and the only thing I can think of is "Dear GOD what is that smell?!"

I manage to wiggle away from the rack (more geeks had taken root to read) and again and again my poor nose is assaulted by this violent REEK coming from these guys.

Now, it's not like they were homeless or anything. They all had shoulder bags, weighted down with their laptops. Several had jawbone-style bluetooth headsets on and those aren't exactly cheap either. These guys had money (though they were too cheap to buy a comic -- how lame).

And yet . . .

SO, if you have a geek on your list and this problem sounds very familiar to you, consider investing in a lovely gift basket of shower gels or bath soaps. Let's try and drop a few hints here on the guys who seem to think it's appropriate to go a week or two or three without showering. Now, I will grant you that coming fresh from work, I often carry along a slight hint of wet dog. But I generally don't go wandering out in public smelling like that and if I DO, I don't stay out long. If people want to smell wet dog, they can visit me at work.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

My Ten O'Clock

Just Finished Reading: Snow Falling on Cedars by David Guterson

Ok so there I am, sitting in the grooming room, just minding my own business, playing a little Super Mario Brothers while waiting for my two little doggies to dry when I hear a knock on the door. Tara, the vet assistant, sticks her head in and says in a cheerful voice, "You 10:00 is here." She pushes open the door and THIS walks in . . .

His name is Ronin and in case you were wondering, YES, he really is as big as he looks in that picture. Notice over to the far right, you can see the corner of a counter. That's an exam table. See, Ronin is just a little too big to fit in any of our kennels so he gets a room of his own.

Of course, he STILL has to go into the tub for his bath, just like all the other dogs that come in. I don't have a room where I can just wash him on the floor. And no, I don't have any sort of automatic lift in there either. Ronin here got into the tub the old-fashioned way. Tara and I lifted him up and put him in.

Fortunately great danes are generally laid-back in their approach to life. They're big dogs that KNOW they're big dogs and so they don't have anything to prove. In fact, if he probably could have crawled up into the tub himself if we'd been able to explain to him what we wanted.

And you folks thought all I did was shave cute little poodles :-)

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Moving On Up

Currently Reading: Snow Falling on Cedars by David Guterson

As the holiday season winds up, CC and I are winding down the Memphis leg of our adventures. We're scheduled to move out here at the end of the month and start things up again in Nashville. It's certainly been an interesting week or two.

CC, poor thing, is swamped with work. I mean actual work not moving work (though there's still plenty of that left too). They're launching all sorts of new things this month and the beginning of next month so everyone is working very hard to get all that ready. And when you add to that our impending move, you can imagine she's feeling a bit stressed out. Even worse, just this week we found out that the apartment we WERE going to get wasn't going to be vacant after all. The current tenants have decided they're going to stay a little longer which sent our leasing agent scrambling to come up with alternative apartments. This, in turn, sent CC scrambling because just this past Monday we sent out a bunch of Christmas cards and change-of-address notices. Now all of that information has to be changed AGAIN to reflect our new address.

We went up to Nashville on Saturday to have a look at the apartment. The one we're moving into now IS vacant and almost finished with its make-ready. It's certainly a nice place. We've got new appliances (they still have that "new appliance" smell) and new carpeting and fresh paint. New ceiling fan and light fixtures. They've even replaced the counter tops in the kitchen. The whole thing has been renovated and we're the next tenant. Got to like that.

We also have a much nicer view from our patio. In the other apartment we were facing part of the parking lot and part of the grassy courtyard area between the buildings. With this new one, it's all grass and trees and such. Much more relaxing.

Our only real trick is going to be finding room for everything. Our new apartment is a little bit smaller than our current one and doesn't have a HUGE closet like we have now (the one I call the Bat Cave). Yes, we do have an extra bedroom, so that helps. We'll use it as our den/office area. But until we get all of our furniture up there and start moving things around, it's hard to say how everything will fit. I think it'll be just fine. This current apartment we're in now has so much wasted space. The rooms are big, which is great but it also means big chunks of empty space we just can't use. It would look pretty funny if we put a bookshelf smack in the middle of the room right?

We're making progress on the packing too. Last week I packed up the rest of my books. That leaves mostly just big things. CC and I have to pack all the stuff on/in our desks and we'll need to break down the computers as well. But since we intend to use them up until the move, there's only so much we can do. Same thing with the kitchen and the bedroom. We've pretty much packed all the stuff we DEFINITELY won't be needing before the move. Now it's a matter of boxing up things and not taping them shut in case we have to go dig through them before we leave. About the only time-consuming thing left to pack are the dvds. Lots of movies there that'll need to be boxed up.

It's going to be an odd Christmas, that's for sure. Since we're moving between holidays it doesn't make much sense to decorate. Anything we put up will have to come down again immediately after Christmas. And honestly, I don't think stacks of boxes will look nice draped with tinsel. It also makes our Christmas lists odd. Any presents we receive before Christmas will end up going right into packing boxes. That makes it difficult to figure out what to ask for.

Like I said before, it's certainly going to be an adventure :-)