Thursday, May 29, 2008

Sheryl Crow Concert Review

Can a Republican love Sheryl Crow? Maybe not. But this Republican sure thinks she's hot. And pictures do her no justice. And editor's note - the pictures got progressively worse as the evening got colder. It's hard to hold a camera still when you're shivering.

Last night she performed at Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Maryland in front of a nearly-packed crowd. Opening for her were Ingrid Michaelson and Ray LaMontagne. I'm not much of a hippy folksy music kind of guy, so I had really no idea who the other two were.


A friend of mine lent me a couple of CD's before the concert that she said were similar to Ray. Among them was Wilco, and I've heard he's like Ryan Adams, whoever the hell that is. Yeah - they sucked. The joke with my friends is that they must cry a lot and drive pink Volkswagen Cabriolet's with a vanity license plate that says, "IMA PU55Y". To figure out if a male singer is worth hearing - ask yourself this question: could Eddie Van Halen kick his ass? If so, he's probably not worth hearing. Other than being a great rocker, EVH is in his mid-50's, an alcoholic, and cancer survivor.

So my beautiful wife and I intended to have dinner, then mosey over to the concert and miss as much of the opening acts as possible. We ate at Chipotle (pronounced Chip-POAT-lay). My wife had never been there and I love a big fat spicy carnita burrito. And the coolest part - we caught some dude checking her out. It's funny how she gets more looks when the kids aren't around.
My wife's sexy feet:


Despite our lolli-gagging, we still managed to get to the pavilion before the opening act. As we pulled into the parking lot, a mint green Volkswagen Cabriolet turned in front of us. OMG!!!! It's Ray LaMontagne!!!

We made it to our seats and started taking in the scenery. Behind us was Marge Simpson and her 5 elderly sisters. Boy were they putting away some 24 ounce $11 beers. After 2 rounds I commented to my wife that they've already spent nearly $130 on beer. Fortunately for us they read every message on the jumbo-tron so that we wouldn't have to.


Next to us was a young high school girl and her father. How cute is that? In front of us were 3 mom's in their late 40's/early 50's. Next to them were a couple of hippy chicks in their 40's. I had to keep remembering that we were in Howard County. It's a different country down there.

Ingrid Michaelson opened the concert playing the electric piano. Not a bad singer. When she spoke to the audience she was personable and very funny. I could picture her being on "That 70's Show". She played for about 40 minutes before bowing out to a half-packed crowd.


After a 20 minute intermission, some skinny hippies in flannel shirts and shit-kicker boots stroll out onto the stage. Are these the stage hands? No one gets excited. Then the tall hippy dude with the mangy beard starts scratching his head and talking into the microphone. Hey - this is the guy that was driving the mint-green Volkswagen Cabriolet! He bangs out a couple of tunes then speaks to the audience. Yeah - this guy failed speech class in high school, that is if he finished high school. He was definitely the guy playing his guitar and smoking weed under the bleachers during lunch. Wasn't he in that movie Into the Wild?


After 40 minutes of incessant whining and unintelligible blithering, Ray LaMontagne spares our ears for a while. I'm sure he could have played longer, but he kept that roach burning in the ash tray of his friend's van.

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At this point, 4 fat lesbians sat next to us. Of course, the fattest one had to sit next to my wife. And of course, her pants were too small and her belt was too tight, causing her to have a grotesque muffin top that spilled over her belt and onto my wife's lap. My wife was totally grossed out. Fortunately, they went to go pick some dandelions during an intermission and when they came back they rotated the seating and the less fat chick sat next to her. The only downside to her was that she was a dancer and wanted to show everyone how excited she was to dance.
After a 40 minute intermission, Sheryl Crow finally comes out. Holy hell. It was a lot louder. And brighter. Not sure what she sang. But it was very theatrical and everyone was into it. In fact, I didn't know her first 3 songs. They weren't bad, I just didn't know them. Then she cranked out A Change Would Do You Good. This was actually the song that I bet my wife she would sing to open. I was close. It was the first song that I knew. I bet my wife that if I was right, she would have sex with me. If she was right, I would have sex with her. All I got was The Look.

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BTW - those 2 hippy chicks near us were all into the music. Clenched pumping fist. Wildly swinging hair. Closed eyes. The anger bite - you know the one where you bite your bottom lip with your upper teeth and squint? It was like an anger-management session. I thought Sheryl Crow was supposed to be fun. This girl is mad at the world and taking it out on the air.

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The one thing that I feared from the concert was her outspoken liberal rants. Sheryl Crow's not much of a boob girl except when she starts talking politics - then she becomes a big boob. At this point, she spoke her only slightly political statement. She said, "I'm Sheryl Crow. I'm a singer. A songwriter. A mother. A cancer survivor. A meat-eater. And a tax-paying Democrat!!! Bet you didn't know that!" Many of the hippy lesbians around us stood and pumped their fists. I didn't know people could be so enthusiastic about being a tax-payer.

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Sheryl rocked for over 2 hours, mostly filled with songs from her new album Detours. She did sing:
Strong Enough
If It Makes You Happy
Everyday Is a Winding Road
My Favorite Mistake
Soak Up the Sun
The First Cut Is the Deepest
Leaving Las Vegas
Real Gone

She encored with All I Wanna Do and Higher Ground, a cover of Stevie Wonder's hit song (and subsequently covered by Red Hot Chili Peppers). I was hoping for Steve McQueen, Picture, Anything But Down, and Sweet Child o'Mine. But hey, you can't have everything.

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Unfortunately, I was not able to get close enough to convince her to come home with us. But I had a great time. She's a great singer. She's a great entertainer. And at 46, she's still hot.

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And special thanks to the Duckman for letting me borrow his hot pink camera. My old man camera would not have produced pictures nearly this good.

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Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Sheryl Crow

Tonight is the big Sheryl Crow concert at Merriweather Post Pavilion. I am very excited. Not only will I be with my beautiful wife, but I'll also be gazing at the beautiful Ms. Crow. Fortunately, I think the restraining order has expired.

I want to bring a camera, but am not sure which one to bring. The website says that no-professional cameras with removable lenses can be brought into the pavilion, but point-and-shoots are fine. Now, I have seen some of the pictures produced by point-and-shoots and even that damn Apple iPhone. Those are really nice pictures! So what is the difference between me using my Nikon D40x with a 18-55 lens while some pimple-ass punk who knows nothing about Sheryl Crow is sitting there snapping away on his Canon 12X 8.0 Megapixel PowerShot S5 IS? his pictures are as good, if not better than mine!

So it looks like I'll be there with my 5 year old Kodak DX3900 3.1 Megapixel 2x zoom point (as seen below) and shoot. Perhaps I should look into getting the high-end point and shoot. But then, I will have already missed the Van Halen and Sheryl Crow concerts, and I don't plan on going to any more concerts this year. (Though I would love to see ZZ Top at Aberdeen Proving Ground!)


Anyway, to top off the digital SLR topic, I broke my kit lens on Sunday. At least someone broke it. It was probably my wife. The rotating adjuster felt tight and then would loosen as I turned it. Then something snapped and I heard the clattering of plastic inside the lens. I removed the lens from the base and I see this:


I contacted my brother-in-law's mother who's an avid photographer and she said it's now a pretty paper weight. I took it to Penn Camera in Pikesville and they said the same thing. So I looked at a Tamron 18-200 for about $300. Not sure if the wife will go for that. Especially since the replacement kit lens is only $125. But why replace a kit lens with a kit lens? Isn't it time to upgrade? I've already had the camera for like 2 months. I'm a semi-pro already.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Memorial Day Weekend

It's so nice to take a 4 day weekend. I requested off on Friday and we already had off on Monday, so I got myself a 4 day weekend. I had lots of plan. Lots of work to do around the house. However, I think that I suffer grand delusions.

My plan Friday was to strip and recaulk the shower in our bathroom. Then I would clean the utility room, clean out the garage, shred papers, mow the lawn, and watch the movie Tombstone.

I started by stripping and caulking the bathroom. I finished that, but it took three hours. So I ate lunch, then watched Tombstone. By the time the movie was done, it was time to get the kids from the bus stop. After chatting, dinner, and some fishing at the pond, Friday was done.

So on to Saturday. My plan for Saturday was to cut the lawn, clean the garage, clean the utility room, watch a movie, and shred papers, then go to a dinner party hosted by one of my wife's friends. I mowed the lawn, did some other yard work, watched part of the movie, and went to the party. That garage and utility room aren't looking so good.

The dinner party was nice. It was at my wife's parent's house in Howard County. It was in this neighborhood with big houses and lots of land. Well, lot's of land to me. Most had a couple of acres. The food was great. I had some Polish beer I'd never heard of. Then I had 4 more. The crab dip actually had crab in it. And not just crab. I think somehow they deshelled several entire crabs. Chunks of meat were as big as that last tax increase that O'Malley gave us.

The company was mixed. I knew most of the people. The guys seem to be a bunch of old business boys. Lot's of prick talk. That doesn't interest me too much. So I went and gabbed with the ladies.

There were a couple of funny moments. One, the son of one the families came in and someone said that he had just hit another girl. Asked why he did it, he said she was being annoying. In response his father yelled, "You go apologize to her. What, do you think you're married to her or something?"

At another time, his younger brother was walking around with his hand down in his pants holdings his mini junk. Same father yells, "Get your hands out of you pants! You'll have plenty of time to play with yourself when you get married." LMBMFAO! (figure that one out!)

On Sunday, my wife informed me that we were going to the zoo - again. We've already been there a couple of times, but we have an annual membership, so we might as well go 55 times a year, right??? However, this time we were going to see the new baby elephant. Didn't they name him MD4Bush or Structural Deficit??? Anyway, we also learned that one of the giraffe's died the previous day. Boo....(a sad boo)

We then visited my grandfather. It was Memorial Day weekend, after all. He was in the Big One, you know? Dub-ya Dub-ya 2. That's World War II to people have never watched All in the Family. It's all about American this weekend. God Bless America, and no one else!!!

After an hour visit in which we had to remind him 30 times that his new great-granddaughter (hey - he'll be 91 this year) was not his new great-grandson, he headed to BJ's for food. Try going to BJ's and not asking your wife if she likes BJ's. It's impossible to do. So after BJ's we went home, made dinner, cleaned the house - no garage. No utility room.

Monday - I planned to clean the garage, clean the utility room, clean the bedroom, shred some papers in the garage, and go fishing with my son at Liberty Reservoir. I told him that we would get up early and leave. So at 5:15 he comes running into my room to tell me it's time to go. This isn't exactly what I had in mind. I told him to go back to bed and sleep until 7am, then we would go. He goes to his room, but runs back with his clock in his hand and says, "I think my clock is broken, because it already says it's after 7 o'clock." Ugh. I grab him and pull him into bed with me. We fall asleep until about 7-ish.

Fishing was fun. We didn't catch anything, but did see some catfish and a couple of bass. Coming home he starts singing "Walk Away" by Joe Walsh. How awesome is that?

Finally at home, I clean the garage, clean the bedroom, and watch another movie - The Savages. My son begs me to go fishing again at the pond behind our house. I cave after dinner and we go. However, along the way my daughters asks, "Papa, did Ozzie Osbourne sing Crazy Train?" OMG - what could make a father more proud than when his daughter asks that question? Though I never go to that utility room, it was awesome and a great cap to a great weekend.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Van Halen comes to Baltimore

I'm kind of bummed. I was very psyched to blog about my concert experience last night at the fabulous Baltimore Arena. Van Halen, my all-time favorite band ever, reunited with David Lee Roth, DLR for those of us in "the know".

Later in the day I decided to do a Google search to see if anyone else had blogged about the concert. I typed in "Van Halen Baltimore". Not too many articles. To make matters worse - I didn't even see my blog! WTF???

I used "Van Halen" and "Baltimore" as my labels for the post. The names were strewn out throughout my blog posting. Yet Google couldn't find it.

Then I did a search for my fabulous nickname, Eludius. It pulled up 2 articles. Two! I've written well over one hundred articles and it found two???

Someone help me here. How do I increase my visibility? Perhaps some of you 20-something people who like to talk about people's farting habits have a tidbit of help that you could provide. If people could find me they would realize how hot I am - my writing, of course.

And for everyone's peace of mind - my entire group made it back home last night. Some of them aren't sure how they got there, but they made it. Several called out sick. A couple planned to be off. Most were hung over.

I felt fine until about 2pm, then the beer sludge hit me and dragged me to the floor. Ugh. What happened? I was drinking liquids all day. Perhaps it was the beer sleep. Beer sleep is never good. You drink 5 beers then fall asleep - you might as well not go to sleep because you will still feel like crap. Six hours of beer sleep is equivalent to 1 hour of real sleep. I think it's time for bed.

I Heard You Missed Us, We're Back!!!!

What? I can't hear you! Can't talk either. I have no voice. What happened to me???? Oh, wait, that would be because I was rocking with VAN HALEN last night at the fabulous Baltimore Arena!

It finally happened. Two cancellations and several months after the originally scheduled date, Eddie, Alex, David, and some fat kid rocked the house. It was awesome.

Our night started off with some fine dining at Hooters. Not that I care too much for that place. I'm not into the plastic fake look. Everyone was telling me that I'm full of shit. Whatever. Prior to being married, of course, I'd rather hook up with a nice looking chick at the library than one at the strip club. But that's just me.


Joining us were Davey B, Ducky, Ecky, me, Dr. Owen, Bobby, and Mike G (I used nicknames for the innocent to protect us. The rest of you are guilty). Several rounds of appetizers and pitchers of beer later, we ordered food. Apparently I ordered the ass sandwich. I could have sworn I asked for the cheesesteak sub. It was horrible. At least I was able to wash it down with some 2 or 5 Yuengling.

Bethany, our server, was very nice to the old guys and even got some good pictures with Ducky. We convinced her that today was his birthday, so he got the royal treatment from the Hooter girls, as did some 12 year old sitting next to us (he later admitted it wasn't his birthday, either!)

Later we asked her to guess our ages (the real ages in paranthesis). Davey B - 38 (35), Ducky 34 (37), Ecky 36 (45), me 28 (35), Dr. Owen 39 (43?), Mike G 35 (I think he's in his 50's or something), and Bobby (she said "you have a young looking face, probably 42"). Yeah, Bobby's 31. Don't worry, Bobby. I won't tell anyone that you cried a tear or two. Notice I was the only one that she thought was under 30. Yes! I may be short, but I'm still young and cute!!!!


Meanwhile, Ducky tells her we're going to the Van Halen concert. She thinks she's heard of them. She's going to be 19 this year. The flirting continues. I said, "Ducky, you graduated from high school before she was born." Ahhhh!!!!! Other things we heard from the younger crowd:

Van Halen? What does he sing? (you gotta be shitting me, right?)
You're going to see Van Halen? I heard David Lee Roth is opening for them. (ah, yeah, in a way)



Two hours later, I was going to the bathroom about every 45 seconds and about 3 sheets to the wind. Fortunately, Dr. Owen was 15 sheets to the wind, so he picked up the tab. I think he thought the bill was a dollar seventy-three. Let's get the h-e-double hockey stick out of here.

We waddle our way down Pratt Street. Ducky and Ecky turn into Rainman and start rattling all this nonsense about wrestlers and singers from the 80's. It's amazing what they have stored up in those greying heads of their's.


We meet up with Big E and his brother-in-law at the First Mariner Arena and head to our floor seats. Some drunk dudes are up on stage screaming and there is some bad lighting and a large garbage bag as a backdrop. Fortunately, they finish a few minutes after we get there - perfect timing. And rumors that Wolfgang von Ludwig Bach Van Halen was going to jam with the Wiggles as the opening act were totally unfounded. The Wiggles are way cooler than that fat ass.

As I look around, I realize that I am one of the youngest people there. Most are people in their 40's and 50's. Some even brought their kids. "Look, Taylor, Tyler, Gunner, and Hunter….this is the band I listened to when I was young." Most look like they've lived a hard rocking life in the 80's. Rolled up acid-washed jeans. Feathered hair. High tops. Yes, that was them 20 years ago. One chick walks by in a tight skirt and low-cut shirt. I holler out, "I bet she went backstage in '84!!!"

Finally, the lights dim. The sound cranks. And out comes DLR. I believe the first song was "You Really Got Me", followed by "I'm The One" and "Running With the Devil". Let me tell you, Roth can still rock. And how old is this dude? 53? Wow. My dad is 58. DLR could be my father! How cool would that be? Well, maybe he wouldn't make a good father, but he'd be a cool uncle! He's the ice cream man and he's hot for teachers!



After a few songs, the fat chicks and kids in front of us decide to stand on their chairs so that no one behind them could see the concert. Being the master organizer of this event, I decide that I should have top viewing privilege and move. I'm only 5'4 1/2" tall (I'll take what I can get), so I scooch to the end of the aisle. There's a few of us there. Most are playing the air guitar and air drums. I can multi-task. I can dance, play guitar, pump my fist in the air, sing, and do drums all within micro seconds of each other. Talk about raw talent.

Out of nowhere half way through the show, some fat bitch security guard taps on my shoulder and demands to see my ticket. After presenting it to her she says, "you need to get back in your seat." Beee-acccchhh! She then makes everyone else in the aisle get back in their seats. She informs us that the aisles must be clear in case there is a fire. Hello!!!! If there's a fucking fire, EVERYONE will be in the aisle. The only difference is that I will get a head start!!! Stupid moron. I hope Wolfgang ate your lunch and Eddie Van Halen blew your phuquing ear drums out!

Anyway, they rocked for 2 hours. They finished up with the 1984 Jump medley. I was disappointed that there were no booby shots on the jumbo-tron. Then again, I don't think I'd want to see tits with tats. Or old milk jugs. Now that I think about it, the only boobies that I'd really want to see are the ones at a Justin Timberlake concert. (Thanks Twinks!)



After the mob departure, we regroup outside. Dr. Owen says, "Let's go to Larry's!!! (meaning the Hustler Club)" Yeah, Dr. Owen must have continued drinking during the concert. He couldn't even stand up straight at this point.

"No, Dr. Owen. I'm not going to Larry's." "Why not?" "I have to be at work at 7am." "You ain't going to be at work at 7am." "Yes, I am. Are you coming home with us or what?" "No, man! I'm going to Larry's!" "Well, I'm not going to Larry's." "What are you gay or something?" "No, Dr. Owen. It's 11:30 and I have to be at work tomorrow. Are you coming home with us?" "No, man, I'm going to Larry's!" "Okay, Dr. Owen. Goodnight!"

Has anyone seen or heard from him yet? Should we put out an APB? Dr. Owen, where are you? Are you still alive? In fact, Mike G - are you okay? Haven't heard from you yet either. If you come to work with glitter on your nose and pasties in your pocket, you will never live this down!


Thursday, May 08, 2008

Locker Room Etiquette

My friend CAG had an excellent posting on locker room etiquette. So I feel compelled to offer the male version of the same post.

So, guys. Here are some of my pet peeves with the locker room.

1) Please wear underwear when you work out. I understand that boxers would be uncomfortable. But go out and get a pair of boxer-briefs. That doesn't make you a metro-sexual. It makes you practical. Seeing your schlong flop out of you're shorts while your stretching is a little stomach churning.

2) Don't use too many aromas. There's this one dude (who says he's married to a woman) and he puts on deodorant, aftershave, cologne, body spray, moisturizer, and foot lotion. Have you ever gagged walking into Bad and Body Works on your way to buy that overpriced bottle of cucumber plumeria hand soap? Yeah, that's this guy.

3) When you come out of the shower, the towel goes around your waste - not your neck. You want to impress the ladies, not the guys. I don't care what you got, even if it is 14 inches long. It does nothing for me.

4) Bring a change of underwear. If you missed that health class in 5th grade - you sweat in your armpits, your head, your chest and that area where your sack lays up against your legs. And it gets sweaty. And your underwear absorbs it. Gross! Bring a 2nd pair! (Yes, I realize this relates to number 1. But it's still no excuse!)

5) Don't sit your naked ass on the bench after the shower (or before it). I don't want to even contemplate poop dribble seeping out of your fat hairy butt onto the bench that we all sit on while we're tying our shoes. Sit on your towel.

6) Don't flex your guns in front of the mirror. You look like a dork. Yes - you're huge. But again, we're not impressed. If it's turning yourself on, more power to you.

7) Pick up the towel and put it in the bin when you're done. It's sweaty. It's gross. If it's gross to you, image how gross it is to someone who has to come in after your lazy ass and pick it up for you. You're mommy still does your laundry, doesn't she?

8) Don't hack a big one while you're in the shower. If you have to, don't announce it to the entire building. Be discrete. It's still gross, but be discrete.

9) If your ass is so hot that you need to use the fan while your changing, turn if off when you're done. I hate walking into an unoccupied locker room to see the fan on full blast cooling off the sweaty towels and poop-dribbled benches.

Follow these simple rules and you avoid the screaming thoughts in my head.

Monday, May 05, 2008

Boycott Carrolltowne Shopping Center

One of my loyal readers provided me with this picture from the wondefully spacious parking lot of the Carrolltowne Shopping Center (owned by Black Oak and Dixon Harvey). I noted in an earlier post that debris is conveniently being stored under tarps and pallets to protect it and us from each other.

This, of course, is next to the donut tracks that you see below. If you are in need of practicing making donuts in your 1999 Acura Integra with the sparkle paint with the lowered chasis and the phatt mufflers that spew baby zerberts, this is where you officially perform that road test. Neighbors prefer if you do this while tossing used condoms and syringes out the window towards the playground in the elementary school in the adjoining property.

I would have provided a nighttime photo, but there is inadequate lighting, which is convenient if you like to hang out in the parking lot and smoke dope and have sex with your trashy girlfriend. You're only allowed to have sex in your said Integra if you're wearing jean-shorts that go to your ankles and a wife-beater, which may be substituted with an over-sized imitation basketball jersey and a Fresh cap turned sideways - to let people know how much you like basketball, of course.

Friday, May 02, 2008

More Sidney Crosby

Because you can never be told too many times that Sidney Crosby is the greatest athlete since Atlas.

NHL.com's Dan Rosen likes Sidney Crosby so much that he wrote an article about Sidney's shaving habits and how much his teammates like him.

As my friend Chris said, "Why is this news?"

It's news because people are clamouring for all things Crosby. I will not rest until I find out his favorite color and his 2nd grade teacher's name. Is he good at math? Does he prefer Robert DeNiro or Al Pacino? Chocolate or Vanilla? Does he put his left skate on first or his right skate?

This is important information!

Ugh! Someone get me a Diet Coke. I feel like belching.

Feedback From My Work Anniversary

I got a rise out of a few people from my comments about my work anniversary. I mentioned that I've been called a nerd 17,000 times and that I've met 9 great co-workers. I found this really funny:

From Stephanie:

Make it 17,001 times, nerd.
And I better fall into the 9 great co-worker category or I'll slug you.

From Mrs. Twink:

NERD! hahahaha...I hope I'm one of the 9 great co-workers or we're going to fight in the parking lot.

I followed up with both of them (who don't really know each other) and shared their common comments.

Mrs. Twink replied with:

That's hilarious though but you never confirmed if we made your 9 great co-workers list. Stephanie, meet me in the parking lot and we'll both hit him.

Boycott K-Mart In Eldersburg

Yes, world, there is still a K-Mart. And what could possibly be the last remaining K-Mart in Maryland, there is now a fight.

As noted in an article in the Gazette, a possible boycott of K-Mart is in the works as mentioned by the Freedom Area Citizen Council (FACC).

Eldersburg, Maryland is home to a K-Mart, which is now owned by Sears when K-Mart bought Sears (huh???), and the Carrolltown Shopping Center. Though often thought to be an abandoned prison or a Baltimore City school based on the vandalism, unkempt property, and trash laying in the parking lot, Carrolltown is actually a semi-legitimate shopping center.

According to Dixon Harvey, owner of Black Oak Associates and owner of Carrolltown Shopping Center, within a 3 mile radius the average household income is over $100,000 (my apologies for bringing down the average). Black Oak is also building the Main Street Eldersburg shopping center off of Route 32.

The problem is that Carrolltown Shopping Center is not serving the residents of Eldersburg. It is serving the residents of Randallstown, which is about 9 miles away.

We thought we were in luck. Dixon Harvey had promised to raise the decrepit eye sore and replace it with a high class open air shopping district that will serve the community, not the thieving miscreants from down the road.

Unfortunately, K-Mart is locked into a lease that will take them beyond any hypothetical prison sentence for Martin O'Malley. And K-Mart has no intention of leaving. And now Black Oak Associates are sitting on their ass. They are sitting on their ass watching the weeds grow. They are sitting on their ass looking at the giant pile of garbage that sits in the parking lot. But don't fear - it is topped with a black tarp with the ominous warning of "Caution" spray-painted on it. This will save us from immenant danger. And the tarp on the pile of unsightly garbage is securely topped with attractive weather-worn pallets.

Black Oak Associates sit on their ass while middle school goth thugs on $400 skate boards, with $100 nose studs, and $250 checkered shoes from Nordstoms (the suburban equivalent of city street gangs) spray paint illegible turf signs on the walls.

Even the Blockbuster is a contributor to the nuisance. It's faded blue canopies are reminiscent of $5 T-shirt stores on the boardwalk in Ocean City.

Let's not forget about Big Lots. In a building that seems to be temporary storage for the store, there are always letters on their sign that are not lit. My favorite nighttime sighting is driving by and seeing it lit up as BIG TS or BIG LO S.

The parking lot is the favorite breeding ground for pigeons and seagulls, fed and watered by the trash and pot holes filled with water in the parking lot. Outside of the beach, you know that any shopping center with seagulls means that it's 2 steps shy of barred doors and metal detectors.

While K-Mart and Black Oak continue to bicker, residents of Eldersburg continue to get frustrated by this open oozing sore in our community. And K-Mart doesn't care either. If they did care, they'd open a cash register now and then. I've been in there and the only place to pay for something is at the customer service desk (and I'm using the term 'customer service' lightly).

So in conclusion, the only way to end this tug of war of egos is to stop shopping at K-Mart. Stop shopping at Carrolltown Shopping Center. In fact, when the Mainstreet Eldersburg Shopping Center opens, don't shop their either. Write to K-Mart and tell them how much they suck. Write to Black Oak and tell them how much they suck. In the words of Dee Snider, "We're not going to take it anymore!"

Sears c/o K-Mart
3333 Beverly Road
Hoffman Estates, IL 60179
1-866-KMART-4U (1-866-562-7848

Black Oak Associates
10055 Red Run Blvd.
Suite 130
Owings Mills, MD 21117
Phone - (410) 356-5820Fax - (410) 356-5822

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Happy 11th Anniversary

Today, May 11th, is my 11th anniversary here at XYZ Vinyl Sidings and Discount Medications Company. Specifically I work in the technology department of the mutual funds division.

I started here in 1997 after a 3 month job search since being laid off from my job as a packaging supervisor at the now-demised Carr Lowrey Glass Company. I wasn't too keen on working there anyway. My time there included seeing a floating body in the Middle Branch, the erection of barbed wire fences around the company, several foot chases by Baltimore City's finest chasing Martin O'Malley's worst, and dozens of breaking and entering of cars and houses.

In the 11 years that I've worked here, I have worked in 5 different buildings, had 13 supervisors, 7 managers, sat in 13 different desks, and been promoted 9 times.

Also in that span of time, I've had 75 idiot coworkers, 9 great coworkers, have had to beat of 14 female admirers (though I will still accept nude photos), heard over 13,000 inappropriate jokes, terrorized one cubicle while she was on her honeymoon (Hi, Kim!), and have had 6 annual reviews (yes, I know.)

Since 1997, I have worked under 2 presidents, suffered under Democratic Governor Glendenning, prospered under Republican Governor Ehrlich, and am now suffering again under Democratic Governor O'Malley. The same 2 elitist thugs are still running the Maryland General Assembly, though one (Mike Miller) promises to retire at the end of this term. The other (Mike Busch) will just keep getting fatter - both in the wallet and the waste. I expect that his ego will make his head explode before he retires.

I have purchased a home, 2 cars (remarkably), and fathered 3 children (that I know of). I have edited 25,000 Wikipedia articles, and written nearly 100. In an unrelated note (I think) I have been called a nerd 17,000 times.

Since 1997, I started and graduated from Loyola College with my MBA, and have received additional credits from UMBC, George Washington University, and almost a credit from a vocational school, though I did get kicked out for not knowing what a pneumatic impact wrench was. I still think that professor had it out for me. He was just super jealous of my sweet nunchuck skills.

So here I am, 11 years later - still not doing much work, but certainly putting on a good show. Here's to 11 more!
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