Friday, June 26, 2015

Canine Envy

I took MarcoSansPolo (MSP), the small, canine-like creature that shares our living space, to a large-box pet-needs store in order to save a little money on vaccinations for the little goober.

Savings were enjoyed, and the whole excursion went without incident, other than worrying about whether the Great Dane behind us in line was drooling as part of its normal dental hygiene or in anticipation of having MSP as a morning snack...or ME as a morning snack...or both of us.

While waiting to be called to a kiosk - where we would be allowed the privilege of getting in line in order to wait for the actual collection of shots and minor swear words that constitute a vaccination - MSP and I were browsing through the large-box pet-needs store and enjoying the brightly-colored displays of squeaky toys, rawhide bones, and various unidentifiable pig parts.

Then I saw it.

There was a display dedicated to tasty treats suitable for bribing a dog to sit, roll over, and/or play poker. I could hardly believe the variety of flavors being offered:

  • Chicken & Brown Rice
  • Beef & Potato
  • Lamb & Apples
  • Beef Meatballs
  • Chicken Sausages
  • Salmon & Potato
  • Blueberry & Yogurt

And no...I did not make up any of those.

What with all the news about Bruce Jenner now being Caitlyn, I'm wondering how many headlines I'd be in if I decided to become trans-species. I'd be willing to fetch a few thrown sticks in return for mesquite-smoked bison jerky. 

Friday, June 19, 2015

Open Mouth, Insert Everything Not Nailed Down

Congratulate me.

Well, not just me, but everybody in these here parts who have just survived another life-threatening period of time in the Upper Midwest.

Yes, it's true...we've just made it through the annual spring ritual known as Graduation Open House Season.

Back home in least back when my siblings and I all ended our high school careers...graduating from high school wasn't considered a very big deal. Almost everybody did it. I mean, if you just showed up often enough the principal eventually got tired of seeing you, handed you a piece of paper and told you to get out.

But in Minnesota, it is considered a great accomplishment...along the lines of devising a safe way to transport plutonium...for anyone under the age of 23 to be given a high school diploma. 

It must be thought of as a spectacular feat, judging from the time and expense put into each graduate's neighborhood-wide celebration known as an Open House.

It all starts with a complete remodeling of the family's home. If a room isn't added, then at least the kitchen will be re-tiled and double-paned windows installed. This doesn't make a whole lot of sense, though, because the only people who will actually see the inside of the house during the "open house" are immediate family members and the catering crew. Everyone else will be sitting or standing in the yard or driveway, under a rented canopy. Or, if the weather turns bad, gathered in the garage...which has had its floor steam-cleaned and its contents moved to a storage unit in North Dakota.

Cakes will be decorated, fatted calves will be sacrificed, bands will be hired, and engraved invitations will be sent. Make no mistake. We. Will. Celebrate. This. Graduation.

At this point, the alert reader will be wondering, "What's so all-fire 'life-threatening' about this?" That's because I haven't told you about the food.

When you are invited to a graduation open house in Minnesota, you are expected to 1) bring a card with a check payable to the graduate inside of it; and 2) leave weighing 15 pounds more than when you arrived.

Really, that's the expectation. The invitations specifically ask you to come and eat their food...and they usually describe the food to be ingested with the gusto of the head waiter at Chateau le Bombaste.

Menus include tacos, pulled pork sandwiches, barbecued chicken, macaroni and cheese in individual cups, waffles, 12-foot subs, baked potatoes, a Chinese buffet, leg of lamb, and truffles from Upper Mongolia. And don't even get me started on the dessert tables.

And then at the NEXT house... 

Oh yes, I didn't tell you yet. Because of my involvement at church and with Giant Step Theatre, I get invited to 87 of these things a year...which means on an average weekend in June, I have to drag myself through 17 of these extravaganzas.

Life is good.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Observed Absurdities™ 18 - Uhhhh...No

It's true...I still find myself in a time of job transition...going from over seven years as a technical writer with the world's second-largest computer network to...well...whatever's next.

But here in the gap, I am employed part-time in the wonderful world of retail. Specifically, I am working at a Christian bookstore, to be referred to in these here parts as JesusWorld.

The books offered for sale at JesusWorld are arranged in several different sections: Christian Living, Devotional, Rumors and Hearsay, etc.

The book pictured in the following picture can be found in our "Current Issues" section.

I have at least two points to make about this:

1)  I suppose that 2012 is "current" in the year 2015...compared to the 2,000-year-old Bibles we sell.

2)  I'm thinking a person doesn't need to read this book in order to know the answer to its title's question is "No, it wasn't."

And an extra thought...anyone who would actually buy this book at this point should be flogged with something dull and pointless.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Strip the Light Fantastic

In all my ranting about how #FredBassetMustDie, I've yet to suggest a viable alternative.

Until now...

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Wanna Almost Win Something?


Our judges want to pump up the participation in The Morning Games at the Almost the Truth Publishing FaceBook page. How to do that? Increase the number of Likes for the page. How to do that? Get those who ALREADY Like us to post a link to the page on the timelines of their friends with an encouragement to Like & Follow. How to do that? OFFER AN INCENTIVE.

As we march toward the milestone of 500 Likes, whoever gets the highest number of their friends to Like the Almost the Truth Publishing FB page, and give them credit for it by posting their name on the page, will win...the audio recording...Bible Alive! It's the New Living Translation dramatized on 59 CDs.

And here's why that's a perfect prize for Almost the's actually 61 CDs, but this collection is missing Genesis 21:8 - 35:10 and Matthew 17:14 - Mark 3. (ALMOST the truth...get it?)'ve got until July 31 or 500 likes, whichever comes first. Encourage your friends to Like the page and post YOUR name on the page. Whoever gets the most friends to comply is our big winner!

(Notice...this contest is untouched by any lawyer's hand and our judges will do their best to be fair and all that, so just have some fun and run with it, OK?)