duh, Germany, New Mexico

Wide Open Spaces

It came to me while listening to Hank Penny’s song, “I Like the Wide Open Spaces.”

I never really thought about it while living in New Mexico or Guatemala. And I kind of took it for granted. But it has come into a fine relief here in Germany. Our world has a dearth of truly wide, open spaces.

From what I’ve seen in Europe so far from every direction, every angle there are signs of land pushed, twisted and shaped into service of people. Of course you can go for a hike or a walk around the forest and they are all well cared for and very nice and quaint. But right around that corner is a hunting blind or a paved trail.

I miss being able to go a few miles from my house and know that I could be mauled by a bear or horrifically slaughtered by a mountain lion. Or hiking 20 kilometers and not seeing another person or electrical wires.

I’ve had a hard time pinpointing exactly what this means for me, not being an especially outdoorsy type. I would ordinarily make one backpacking trip a year into real wild lands that had been left to their own devices. And then I would think of that state of being fondly the rest of the year from the safety of my home in downtown Santa Fe.

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beefjerky, duh, Germany, petpeeve


I just thought of something really good to write. I had a great conversation with a friend and realized all of these colorful anecdotes pop up that I’d been meaning to share. Then I forgot them by the time I got off the phone.

Here’s what comes up on Google here in Germany when you type in the word ‘dumbass’.

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cockfights, duh, hell, petpeeve

Something Annoying

It’s been a while since I posted a good old Andy Rooney-style (“Shining your own shoes is very satisfying”) diatribe, but I just have to ask what’s with banks not wanting to take my money?

I’ve lamented this fact to friends only to be met with a shrug of indifference. But seriously friends, when I take my bucket of coins to the bank they should accept these coins joyously. It’s because these coins are money!

But in these modern times it doesn’t make sense for the bank to have a change sorting machine that they use to count my monies. No, that will cost 3 Euros. Or maybe you will have to pay 10% to have that ‘Coinstar‘ Machine. That is because your hard collected coins are not money.

This is dumb.

So this means I would have to find 300 pennies on the street and give them to you, Bank-friend, when you have a machine that can do it. But you, Bank-friend, see this revenue stream where you can not only earn interest by holding onto my monies, but you can also charge me 300 pennies to count my money that you are earning money on (Is this even what really happens? In my seething frustration, I never bothered to check and see how banks really work.).

If I was a congressman, I would probably be one of those yokels who pushes for relatively meaningless legislation like the Freund-Johnson Count My Money, Suckas Act or something and then the banks would be held accountable.

This is another reason I am not a Congressman. The other one is probably this.

*One last Andy Rooney diatribe in honor of the COP16. Hopefully the nations get together and come up with something great. In the meantime, watch Andy. Glaciers the size of Connecticut?!?!

duh, Germany, protest

Cheerios… plain

This image is from a blog post titled "Why Communists Hate Cheerios," which is true. They also hate babies. And love.

I love Cheerios. Yes, I know. They are very plain. They are neither sweet nor salty. But it is true.

Now we will do some math. Figuring that I ate a box a week when I lived in the United States, subtract two years for when I lived in Guatemala, subtract – well let’s be generous – about nine years for when I was small. Now you have about 22 years. Multiply that by 52 weeks, which is 1,144-18oz boxes or roughly 1,287 pounds of Cheerios that I have run through my system. Then multiply that by about the $2.73 I roughly estimate for average box cost and I (or my parents) have spent over $3,123.12 shoving all of those wholesome ‘o’s down my throat.

For as long as I can remember, Cheerios have formed a grand part of my diet, akin to Koreans and kim-chi*.

Until now .

Sometimes you just assume that you can get everything you want wherever you go. Life is a fairy tale and we skip along blissfully ignorant.

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beefjerky, duh

Awkward Youth Stories: #1

a search for the word 'awkward youth' yields this photo

A long time ago in a faraway land called Wisconsin, a small boy was working with other children on a float for a parade. The float consisted of a hay wagon with a bunch of things nailed to it. Said small boy does not remember the theme of this particular float, except that it had something to do with 4-H (I pledge my head to clearer thinking, my heart to greater loyalty, my hands to larger service, my health to better living for my club, my community, my country and my world).

Being yet quite young, this small boy was not wise to the ways of the world. And as he hammered, the small boy held high up on the hammer and gently plinked along hoping not to crush his fingers.

At this point in our story, a large man in bib overalls with a smoke-damaged raspy voice sidled up beside him.

“Your father teach you to hammer that way?” he inquired. Then he and his friend proceeded to laugh.

The small boy wasn’t sure exactly what had been intended by the comment, but now 25 years later, the small boy realizes that this large man was what is commonly referred to as a jerk.

duh, hell, Holy crap, Uncategorized

Problems with Pants at Work, Pt. II

I have a nice pair of Paper Denim jeans.

I like them and they are very comfortable. They feel very good when I wear them. These are strange sentences.

This is what my pants look like.

That being said Paper Denim needs to do a little investigating into button improvement. You may – or may not – remember my entry, “Today My Pants Have Holes,” wherein I chronicled the mysterious appearance of holes in my britches. Well, now I’m at work and I’m having yet more problems with my pants.

This afternoon, while finishing up at the ‘loo,’ the button popped off my pants and plunked down before me gently settling to the bottom of the porcelain bowl.

I stopped, stunned, staring at the slightly yellowed water. I looked around me, as if someone was there to witness this event and then turned my attention back to the toilet. Should I just let it go?

For some reason, Paper Denim decided that their pants would benefit from a button that could be removed. Why, Paper Denim?!?! Why?!?!

I attempted to zip up my pants without the button, but it wouldn’t quite do. Plus, without a button, these pants would be rendered useless. So I did what any resourceful person would do.

I left the restroom and went to the cupboard where we keep the tools. I found a pliers and returned to the restroom. In this short journey, it was necessary to pass by two co-workers, but no one asked why I was returning to the bathroom with a pliers.

I plunged the pliers into the still somewhat bubbly water and fished out the button. I threw everything into the faucet and washed it all with great intensity. More so than I normally wash things.

From now on these shall be called Paper Potty Pants. This is a dumb story.