I was up way too early this morning.
I woke up at 5:39a because I had to pee really bad. Normally I get up at 6:15a, and that left me with two choices: Either I could get up, pee, come back to bed, take 20 minutes to get back to sleep, and basically just get back to sleep before the alarm goes off, leaving me tired all day; or I could get up, pee, and just stay up, get ready for work, go to work early, be tired all day, and go home early. Regardless of the choice, I was going to be tired all day; the thing that tipped the scale was the “go home early” part of the second option, which is the one I ended up choosing.
Normally, leaving my house at 7:00a, it takes me about 30 - 45 minutes to get to work. Today, leaving around 6:15a, I got to work by 6:35a. (I had this craving to listen to Billy Ocean on my way to work today, hence the title of the entry.) That’s hella faster, all chalked up to the morons that clog up the freeway during rush hour.
Speaking of rush hour and driving and such, Jenn and I went to the Portland Auto Show this weekend. Never having been to an auto show before, I was pleasantly surprised at some of the cool things they had. I admit I was hoping to see more in the way of future/concept cars (there really weren’t any), but they did have lots of other stuff. Just about every model from every manufacturer was on the floor, and that was neat to see.
We spent more than our fair share of time at the MINI booth. I’ve always had a penchant for small, fun cars and the MINI Cooper has been one of my favorites for a long time. Their return to the US after 30 years of absence is a welcome one, and had I not already bought my car, I’d be looking at buying a MINI. Jenn wasn’t as hot on them as I was before the show, but after seeing one in person and getting a chance to sit in it, she’s hooked, too.
Money, of course, is a whole separate issue entirely.
The MINI ad campaign centers around the concept of motoring, which seems to be a Zen-style approach to driving where regardless of where you are, as long as you’re in your car you should feel like you’re in Nirvana. I thought about adopting this philosophy in my driving as it would probably be more stress-free, but then I realized that I hate stupid people and feel this intrinsic need to punish idiocy (i.e., if you can’t figure out how to merge properly, you don’t get in on the freeway), and that affects my driving much more than some ad campaign ever could, so that was a wash.
I bought a lottery ticket for this past Saturday’s Powerball drawing. I took the ticket in on Sunday to scan it at one of those machines that tells you if you won or not. It went something like this:
INT - FRED MEYER STORE - DAY
Travis, 26, ENTERs the store and strides confidently to the lottery scanning machine. He wonders what he will do with the millions of dollars that are going to soon be entering his pockets when he discovers he is the winner.
Arriving at the lottery scanning machine, he pulls the ticket out of his wallet and runs it under the scanner.
TRAVIS Oh, yeah. Moneymoneymoneymoneymoney! Here we go…
Travis scans the ticket in the machine. The machine does nothing.
TRAVIS [grumbling] Okay, come on now. Scan me, baby.
Travis scans the ticket again. Again, nothing happens. Travis wags the ticket furiously under the scanning mechanism and finally the ticket machine responds with a message on its screen that somehow is heard as a very loud robot voice, almost as though on the PA system of the store.
SCANNING MACHINE You are a fucking loser. Next time you should just light your money on fire. If you feel up to it, please come back next week so your hopes can be trampled again. Thank you.
TRAVIS [yelling] God dammit, machine! I hate you! I hate you!
Travis EXITs the store at a fast walk, obviously irritated at the outcome of the scanning operation.
Okay, maybe that’s not exactly how it went, but it was damn close to that.
What the hell else did I do this weekend?
Oh, yeah - we got a lot more done in the way of moving things out of the apartment and into the storage closet. After making a run doing that, we went to Home Depot to pick up some supplies for installing a new shelf in our closet and fixing up an old chair we have. Got all that stuff home, worked some more on boxing things up and organizing it all… good stuff. I think my hockey friend, Jerry, summed it up best: Five pounds of shit in a two pound bag. Now that the cleaning effort is nearing completion, I might say it’s closer to four pounds of shit in a two pound bag. Better, but still not ideal.
Jerry is a total crack-up. Every time I talk to him, I find out new weird crap about him. This weekend I found out he has eight cars, two boats, and a trailer; he’s lived in the same house since 1968 (which is how the “five pounds of shit in a two pound bag” reference came up); he signed up for the Army in an effort to avoid getting drafted (apparently you have more say of where you’re stationed or something if you sign up instead of getting drafted?); and during the 70’s in the whole “return to Africa” movement (with the Black Panthers and all that), he was stationed in Libya, which was apparently where they sent all the African-American soldiers who refused to work well with others due to that movement. He was telling me about how there were stabbings and shootings and things on the Army base because of all the trouble going on. This guy seems to have done everything.
Watched the Hawks win one and lose one this weekend. They say they may still be contenders to go to the playoffs, but… well, I don’t have a lot of faith. Maybe they’ll get lucky or something.
I cleaned the grill on Sunday. That was probably the messiest thing I’ve done in a long time. I ended up using car engine degreaser to get the crap off the grid. My hands smelled like degreaser for a couple of hours after that.