April 30, 2012

Goose on a Roof

Another experiment of zooming in with a cell phone camera. He is probably scouting what cars to poop on. Some people like to correct others that these are Canada geese, not Canadian. There was another faction (mostly Europeans) that insist Aluminum should be pronounced Aluminium. They can all sod off. 
Canada goose on top of a roof

April 29, 2012

Wood Eating Bumble Bee

Dear Bumble Bee, why do you chew on my fence so? I see a couple perfectly drilled holes, and wonder, what the hell? Then I see you buzzing around, entering one of the holes, then some sawdust get kicked out. This is highly unusual behavior for a bumble bee, I think. Aren't you supposed to be flying around making flower love or something? Or are all those chemicals messing with your senses and you've gone into drill mode? If this is a new home, you are welcome to bring your bee family, although I swear you guys like hives.
bumble bee eating a fence

Bess Bug

Thank you, patent leather beetle, for appearing in my life the week of one of my daughter's "bug week" at school. Against my better judgement, I took you to her school in ghetto fab bug barn made of two plastic cups held together with masking tape. You could have perhaps resulted in the first lawsuit against a parent for bringing an aggressive bug to school. However, Wikipedia assured me of your docileness (sp?). Therefore, I had some regret leaving you at school all day, despite being a good representative for your genus, or kingdom, or something (8th grade biology was a loooong time ago). We all know the happy ending, as we ended up bringing you home and releasing you into the woods, were you could enjoy the rotting wood you so enjoy. Fare thee well, most amazing bug in the world, we hardly knew ya.
bess bug also known as patent leather beetle

April 28, 2012

Model Volcano

Seemed simple. Buy volcano model. Take out of box. Add baking soda and vinegar. Huge explosion (as the Google Chrome Angry Birds add would say). I suppose I missed the word "model" and the fact that you are supposed to enjoy dipping plaster pieces into water and laying over string strung around a tube and piece of cardboard. After several hours of construction fun, time for the money shot. Not so much. Even though I used the recommended baking powder, instead of baking soda, the resulting bubbly mix was not that exciting. I should have used a bottle a beer after somebody tapped the top of the bottle with another bottle; man did I hate that trick. Plus the bonus orange glow-in-the-dark paint did not glow as promised. If she didn't want to keep it, I would just fill it with lighter fluid and be famous on YouTube as worse father ever.
volcano model made from plaster and paint

Fonzi Dinosaur

My daughter has no idea who Arthur Herbert "Fonzie" Fonzarelli is, to tell the truth, he was a little before my time as well. I do know that Happy Days was where "jump the shark" entered the lexicon, complements of Fonzie. Anyhow, even she couldn't stop laughing over both of holding two thumbs up and saying, "eh!" We aptly named him "Fonzisaurus." Thank you dollar dinosaur book, for the simple laugh, and the bonus human brain below showing how superior we are to the dinosaurs even though they were on Earth for millions of years, while homo sapiens are a mere footnote.
iguanodon picture that looks like fonzie

April 27, 2012

Giant Boulder Mountain Bike

Cheapness makes you do weird things, like justify cycling 16 miles round trip to work several times a week on a bike that is meant to be a beater bike. I call her the "Kraken," a Giant Boulder from 2001 weighing in at a paltry 35 pounds, and yes, that is the original pie plate on the back. Maybe I wasn't completely insane since I added slightly slick tires that are supposed to "turn any mountain bike into a road bike." Yeah right. I added a few commuting essentials that I borrowed from the worst fixie ever including the rack and a bell. This bike shared 500 beloved and cursed miles with me one summer that resulted in three suspected heat strokes. She has since retired to the pasture, aka, my basement, and only gets pulled back into service in emergencies, emergencies which take me down memory lane.
giant boulder bicycle 2001 called the kraken

Orange Bicycle Tire

I was a little embarrassed to tell the guy at my LBS that I didn't want to purchase a tire that "didn't match" my sweet-ass rims. Glad I waited, since I had some research to do about this whole "700-xx" notation. The stock tires were 700-25C. Not even Sheldon Brown could tell me what the "C" meant, although it may have something to do with the French and their messed up bike measurements (see worst fixie conversion ever). I really wanted the Borat matchy-matchy orange, although I could only find them in 700-23C that I found out would work with my lovely Trek District. Also, these were folding tires, instead of non-folding, whatever the hell that meant. I own no Lycra, so I don't know what I am doing sometimes when it comes to bicycle lingo. Nevertheless, I got this Vittoria Rubino Pro III folding tire on myself, Presta valve extender and all, without too much trouble. 
vittoria rubino pro III orange bicycle tire on trek district

April 26, 2012

Bonsai Seedling

Reading the fine print is too much work. This Bonsai got delivered in seed form when I thought I was getting a mini-Bonsai forest from Uncommon Goods. I knew it was a bad sign when only two of the 6 or so seeds even sprouted. No problem, I thought I would be pruning my Bonsai in a month or two. Well, these Black Pine is 4 months old and roughly the same size it was on day 30. Won't be using those pruning sheers anytime soon. This is the second thing I got from Uncommon Goods turned out to be a lot of work (adventures in home beer brewing).
baby black pine bonsai tree

Office Amaryllis

Every picture I've ever seen of an Amaryllis is when it is blooming. I like it better when it has the nice big leaves, and it should be a crime to cut them back just so you can get your flower. What, like Amaryllises are just waiting for someone to come prune them? Reminds me of the rock crab, who gets its arm taken off for consumption and thrown back in the water where it is able to grow a new one. Don't get me wrong; it is tasty. But what the heck must that crab be thinking: "Holy crap you just took my arm! What if it don't grow back this time!?"
five leaf amaryllis not blooming

April 25, 2012

Patio Paver Sand Estimation

Maybe because the yard is slanted or my eyes ain't what the used to be, my estimate on the amount of sanded needed to complete the extension of our modest patio by a good 10+ bags despite the guide on how much you need on the bag. Typical man, not following the instructions. That last row on the far right is almost a sheer drop-off until I can get more sand. Plus, many of these are wobbly and will need to be reset. Fun.
patio consisting of 12 inch red patio pavers

Patio Paver Base Layer

Things started so promising. I figured adding to an existing patio would be easier than starting one from scratch. Too bad it had been 8 years since we laid the one down on the left, and colors are completely mismatched. Still, that first base layer looked great and I figured I would be enjoying a glass of vino by sundown. 
sand base layer for a patio

April 24, 2012

St. Pete Beach

Many people enjoy touching the plate at a restaurant after the waiter/waitress clearly indicates that the plate is hot just to see what the definition of "hot" is in this particular instance. The Gulf of Mexico was a similar situation for me when I visited St. Pete beach. I was told it was hot, especially in the middle of August, and so I decided to see how "hot" it really was. Long story short: it felt like a hot tub that was inside of a sauna.
st pete's beach florida gulf of mexico view

Frozen Lake

I've seen enough movies to know you don't walk on a frozen lake unless you live somewhere north of N 46º. Perhaps the Arctic Circle would be even better. Stupid water having a lower density when solid than when liquid. Then again, life wouldn't exist if that weren't true. Maybe I am splitting hairs.
frozen lake by a shopping center

April 23, 2012

Pantyhose for Shoe Polishing

While I was never in the military (but wanted to be), someone close to me was and when it came time to transfer the manly art of shoe shining, I was informed that a girl's nylon was the best final buffing tool. Ironic, but really works. Just never ask to "borrow" some from your significant other as she most likely want them back when the look like the stylish pair(?) below.
women's nylons that were used to buff shoes

Fire-shined Shoes

I love the smell of shoe polish in the morning. I love shining shoes. I am terrible at it. It's not like I haven't been taught properly, more like I just don't do it enough and I only have one or two pair of shoes that are of modest price to practice on. YouTube said I should try "fire-shining" where you apply a couple a coats of shoe polish, let it dry, then pass a lighter over the polish a few times (some people light the can of polish on fire - crazy). It almost worked. These shoes are tuxedo shoe shiny, but I think you actually have to buy shoes that are that shiny to begin with. It was still fun, and they look a little better than they did before. 
fire shined black leather shoes

April 22, 2012

Bowling Lane Gutter Bumpers

Maybe I am just jealous that we didn't have gutter bumpers as kids and had to learn the hard way about what happens when you don't keep the bowling ball in the lane. Back when we had to hunt to survive, animals were not trapped in between rocks that helped guide the spear home; if you couldn't hit the target, you didn't eat. Of course, my kid still managed to get a gutter by squeezing it in the last two feet before the pins were there is no bumper. That was hard to explain to her.
bowling lanes with gutter bumpers

April 21, 2012

Wooden Tennis Racquets

Vintage wooden tennis racquets only $4.99! I have to hand it to Baseball. While all other sports moved on from wood, they stuck to their guns and have not changed their game to incorporate modern day materials. Imagine if cyclists were still using wooden bicycles today instead of the $10K+ carbons they now use. A friend suggested that they should be using unicycles for the Tour de France, but that is conversation for another day. Here's to you, wooden tennis racquet, may your low string tension never leave you bent out of shape. 
wooden tennis racquets for sale

Thrift Store Fail

I love thrift stores because I am cheap and interested in weird things. But this deal is a little sketchy. Only a $1.49 from the Container Store, and the thrift store marks it up to  $1.99. Can you say "shakedown!"
plastic container for sale at thrift store

April 20, 2012

Fire-Truck in Traffic

They should equip fire trucks with twin 20 mm cannons. That would discourage people from hurrying and getting in their way.
fire truck out of car window

Fire Truck on Residential Street

Who doesn't respect firemen, or is it firepeople? Fireperson? Ah, contextual: firewoman.
little fire truck

April 19, 2012

Butterfly Pamphlet with Live Butterfly

I like to fancy myself a manly man, although I don't know why I just used the word "fancy." Anyway, these indoor butterfly exhibits are hardcore, with butterflies everywhere, landing on everything. This big guy was on one of the pamphlets about butterflies. Awesome.
live butterfly on a pamphlet on butterflies

Plate of Fruit with Butterflies

Because it is covered in butterflies.
plate of fruit covered in butterflies

April 18, 2012

Spanish Classical Guitar

Got this classical guitar on a high school trip to Spain thinking I could make the jump from piano to guitar, no problem. I ended blaming my inability to play on the strings being so far apart. This thing still has sand in it from when I took it to the beach so a friend could serenade the ladies for us. Says it is a "La Roca" whatever that means. The case is the best part, and garnered me much attention on the way home from these girls from Texas.
la roca classical guitar from spain

Fender Stratocaster Guitar Copy

This is my Fender copy made by Lotus that I got while in college thinking that I could learn to play the guitar (again). Instead, it sat in the corner of our dorm room/apartment and gave the allusion to the few lucky girls who made it that far that maybe I played guitar. My bro-in-law, who is a good guitar player, has restrung it for me and got me a mini Marshall amp. My fingers just don't do right, however. At least I think this is a Strat copy; the headstock looks different, but I suppose that is why it is a "replica."
lotus copy of a fender stratocaster

April 17, 2012

Lionel O-gauge Train Engine

I don't know much about Lionel trains except I once sent one flying off the ping-pong table where we had laid track and it took 20 years for my brother to fix it. However, from what I have seen on this place called the internet, this Sante Fe engine might be rare and not very valuable. 
lionel o-gauge sante fe locomotive train engine

Green Train Locomotive

Tough to explain to a toddler that you missed the last train ride of the day even though it is right in front of you and the locals get to ride it back to the storage facility. I like to think that she was too scared anyway.
old green train locomotive

April 16, 2012

Questionable Barbie Pose

I swear I didn't place this doll like this. I swear I put some clothes on it, fed it a warm meal and gave it a place to stay for the night. After I took a picture, of course. With the number of Barbies in my house, this is bound to happen eventually. I just feel bad for the two or three male Barbies I have since...well, they are eunuchs. 
barbie striking a pose in jeans

Barbie House Made from Cardboard

Only took an hour to make from one big old box. Used packing tape to secure it all together and some clear plastic packaging over some of the windows (though I guess I could have used tape there). When I couldn't figure out how to install stairs appropriately, I added the elevator, or lift as they would call it in Europe. The kids colored it and destroyed it, as they saw fit.
barbie house made from a cardboard box

April 15, 2012

Audi R8

Think it is an R8. I took this about 50 yards from the Ferrari I shot a couple weeks ago. Probably should just go to a car show...
white audi r8 sports car

April 13, 2012

Empty Baby Wipe Shelves

This usually coincides with a "sale" practically guaranteeing that said item will be out of stock and you will be forced to scramble for alternatives. Alas, at least I had proof that I was there.
empty store shelves where the wipes are supposed to be

April 12, 2012

Form 1003 Yrs School Box

As if the mortgage process wasn't confusing enough, there is a place on the top right of the picture below from form 1003 where you are supposed to enter "Yrs. School." What the hell does that have to do with a mortgage application and how the hell do you fill it in? Google says that you should put in 12 if you graduated high school, 16 for something like a bachelors, and so on and so forth. What about my friends who have never left school?
form 1003 showing yrs school box

B4 Redacted Document Definition

Nothing better than reading a document that the FDA has posted and coming across a page like this one. The (b)(4) apparently refers to how they reconcile the Freedom of Information Act confidential treatment requests so they don't give away any industry secrets. The magic eraser is 17 CFR 200.80 (b)(4). So when they want to redact a document, they just throw a (b)(4) exemption and some dashes in there thinking all of us poor saps know what it means.
redacted fda document using b4

April 11, 2012

Orange Tree Sapling

Fast-forward 5 years from the best souvenir from Florida ever. The orange tree has grown zero oranges, had one flower (I think), has come close to dying several times because it requires an insane amount of water (it drinks one of those aqua globes every day), and needs to be put inside every time the temperature could come close to 32ºF because it will die if it hits that temperature or lower for 4 hours. How the hell do they raise these things, even in Florida? What happens if they get a hard freeze and they all die? This is taking forever. I only wanted to provide my family with a healthy fruit! Should have gotten the lemon tree.
adolescent orange tree raised in the north

Orange Tree Souvenir

I got this baby orange tree at an airport in Florida on the way back from a business trip 5 years ago. You could only buy it if you could prove you lived outside of Florida. The sapling came in a box and, while it was a pain in the ass to carry home on the plane, the other passengers were jealous and they all wished they had one. I meant to give it to my better half, but I have greedily raised it myself.
baby orange tree souvenir from Florida

April 10, 2012

Water Main Break

The hardest part was explaining to our toddler that they had NOT installed a pool at the end of our street.

Mini Forest Fire

While no forest fire is a good thing, this one was right across the street and did not spread far thanks to the quick response of the local fire stations. The cause? Me thinks Homer Simpson was in the woods trying to make cereal.

April 9, 2012

Family Member Car Stickers

One of their kids is slowly being phased out of the family.
family stick figures on car window

Fistful of Worms

She likes earth worms and gummy candy, but does not like gummy worms. Go figure.
fist full of worms

April 8, 2012

Easter Baskets

Easter is the only day of the year having chocolate for breakfast is acceptable, much like for dinner on Halloween. "Dad is great, he gave us chocolate cake!" - Bill Cosby
easter baskets with chocolate candy and toys

April 5, 2012

Ferrari 458

Does Ferrari make cars in any color but red? And who cares? This thing has the curves of a supermodel.
red ferrari 458 parked

Horses in Field

Horse walks into a bar, the bartender says, "Why the long neck?"
horses out in a field with one stretching its neck

April 4, 2012

Framed Slide Rule

The wise soul who put slide rule art together did have a point...probably before solar powered calculators were invented. Then again, an electromagentic pulse could knock a calculator out, so I will keep this handy and above my desk, for now.
framed slide rule with in case of emergency break glass sign

Slide Rule

If I was born before calculators existed, I would have stabbed myself with a slide rule. Even an abacus seems more user friendly. Seriously, this thing takes mad skill to use, and those that had to use it, I salute you!
slide rule and manual

April 3, 2012


"My fellow Americans. As a young boy, I dreamed of being a baseball. But tonight I say, we must move forward, not backward; upward, not forward; and always twirling, twirling, twirling towards freedom!" -Kodos as Bill Clinton on The Simpsons Treehouse of Horror VII
playground with slides and stuff

Keep Off Playground Sign

This playground sign should also say "No fun allowed." Screw 'em, I let the kids play. And I would have smoked if I smoked. And I would have thrown some trash down if I had some trash. You get the picture.
sign that says no playing at playground

April 2, 2012


I don't know why I take so many pictures of rabbits.
bucket full of white bunnies

Bunny Evil Eye

"Well, that's no ordinary rabbit...That's the most foul, cruel, and bad-tempered rodent you ever set eyes on! Look, that rabbit's got a vicious streak a mile wide! It's a a killer! He'll do you up a treat, mate...I'm warning you! He's got huge, sharp...er...he can leap about. Look at the bones!" - Tim in Monty Python and the Holy Grail
evil eye bunny looks like the one from Monty Python

April 1, 2012

Parallel Parking Win

Even a blind squirrel finds a nut every once in awhile.
red honda element parallel parking job

Red Porsche 911

Double feature quote day!
"Porsche: It's a little too small to get laid in, but you get laid the minute you get out of it." -Crazy People
"Porsche. There is no substitute." - Risky Business 
red porsche 911 from the 1980s