Bards & Beards

It’s never a good thing when a co-worker tells you they dreamed about you last night.

That conversation never quite happened because most of the people who I work with end up sleeping or at least napping during the day. So it went more like “I had a dream that you were in the other day.”

At any rate, the co-worker announced to my other co-workers that in her dream, I was dressed like a 20-foot chicken and was chasing her through the streets in her neighborhood. Apparently it wasn’t fun and games because I was throwing sharp stars on strings in an effort to take her out. Each time I’d throw the weapon at her she’d figure out how to avoid them. I was happy to hear about her defense.

To that end, I offered up these excuses why it could never happen in real life.

1.) I don’t own a 20-foot chicken suit. It wouldn’t fit in the elevator in my building. Not even in the freight elevator. Where would I store such a thing?

2.) I could never quite master a throwing star. I can throw a frisbee like a madman but throwing stars… not so much. I could never be Chuck Norris but no one else on this planet could be either. I guess Wham-O would have to manufacture my weapons. I’d hope they’d be the kind that glow-in-the dark.

3.) I don’t even know where my co-worker lives.

I apologized for her id’s opinion of me and reassured her it would never happen again.

Speaking of Chuck Norris and I know I was, I’ve been sporting a beard of sorts. I’ve gotten more positive comments than negative. I can’t believe the time it saves me every day. It’s like 10 minutes which translates into about an hour a week. You have to substract 10 minutes because I keep it trimmed up. I don’t want to look like Grizzly Adams.

I have a fair amount of red in my beard. It may look a little silly because I have brown hair. For now, I’m enjoying the extra hour that I can devote each week to different things.

Another one of my co-workers has a full-fledged beard. We figured he’s saved about a couple weeks of his life not shaving.

I’m just happy with the extra hour a week, I’ll take it.

Bock, Bock… just kidding…

Great Role Models

I have two great role models in my grandparents. Today is their 53rd wedding anniversary. 53 years… I’m sure they’ve gone through headaches, heartaches and more “discussions” than they’d care to admit but they’ve stuck together. What a testament to love.

I hope someday when I tell the woman I want to marry that I’ll be with her through thick and thin, I’ll be able to follow their example of what it takes to weather life and all the tribulations that come along with it. I can’t wait for that day to eventually happen.

I had a very special conversation with my grandfather whose birthday is also today. Sometimes talking to him chokes me up. I value his mentoring over the years and love him dearly. He doesn’t say much but when he does, you know its with his wisdom and his heart.

My grandmother took care of me, my sister and our cousins with all of the energy should could muster. Taking care of all of us wasn’t easy. If you’re looking for religious inspiration, look her way. She truly believes faithfully.

So on this special day for them, I send them my love and thanks for all they’ve done for me through the years. They’ve help mold me into who I am.

Saturday Mornings In Cleveland

I was up early this morning and thought about getting my favorite breakfast, do I really need to tell you the destination?

While I was driving this morning and at the stop light at West 25th and Lorain, I just stopped and listened how quiet it was outside.

Sure, there was the street sweeper cleaning up Market Square plaza around 7:30 this morning. It was a sign Friday night was over and a new day was ready to begin in earnest.

At the West Side Market, the merchants already had their produce set up ready for the hundreds of people who will roam up and down the aisles looking for the best prices. There was an implied quietness there. No people yelling over other people this morning. Everyone was most likely pre-coffee and still trying to get their arms around the day ahead.

A man stood outside of Bar Cento outside of the patio area. Last night, people having fun and socializing stood at the same spot but this morning, that space was his. He stood there by himself watching traffic go by.

Not too many cars stopped me from getting to where I wanted to go. The lights on West 25th lazily changed from red to green, almost themselves realizing the work ahead after everyone got their morning routine under way.

In front of the Old Angle, two people leaned up against the patio area there. I think the woman was waiting on the bus. She was dressed in a uniform and the man who she was kissing looked like he was waiting to see her off to her job.

Cleveland was quiet this morning. Only two people waited on the bus down the street at West 25th and Detroit. It’s the bus stop where everyone seems to gather but no one actually gets on the bus. One man was inside of the bus stop and another man stood by the fence, both of them obviously counting down the moments until their transportation arrived.

Just two cars drove up the Veterans’ Memorial Bridge, just 24 hours earlier, so many commuters would share the connection from Ohio City to downtown Cleveland over the Cuyahoga River.

At St. Malachi, a homeless man curled up in one of the church’s entrances seeking shelter from any noise and elements. I wondered how long he had been there and the story of his life.

The river was quiet this Saturday morning. No boats had signaled the Center Street Swing Bridge to do its job and allow traffic up the Cuyahoga. Of course, there were a fair number of seagulls who did not even care to disturb the peace. They were just looking for their breakfast and flying around trying to spot something to eat.

Four cars sit right now outside of the Rock Bottom Restaurant & Brewery. The employees are already inside getting things ready for people once the city comes to life.

It’s a cloudy day so far with the temperature of 65 degrees outside. There’s hardly any breeze to even make the trees make any noise.

Cleveland is quiet just waiting to come alive… Downtown living, ain’t it grand?

Sold Out, Joined The Cult

If Narm can admit to wearing “Secret”, then I can admit I’ve sold out, I’ve joined the cult, given into the establishment. I can’t claim I don’t drink caffeine anymore. I’m addicted to Starbucks’ Tazo® Chai Tea Latte.

1.) I hate tea but it doesn’t taste like it.

2.) I hate the swarmy cliquey world that is Starbucks.

3.) I love the Chai Tea Latte.

Now, when I see a Starbucks I can no longer roll my eyes (a common practice of mine) I now want to pull out my debit card and get some liquid happiness. The Chai Tea Latte (God, am I really typing this?) puts me in a good place, makes me think of great things. Can something that comes in three different sizes honestly make you feel this good?

Great, just what I need a trip to Target and a stop at Starbucks on the way out.

Hell, I think I’m going to pick up a “Secret Powder Fresh” the next time I head to Steelyard.

Did you hear that?

That’s the sound of taawd throwing in the towel…

Ah, The Weekend…

After having my birthweek off, I made it through five days at work.

Have you ever had one of those weeks where you crawl to Friday like a baby who’s never put one hand in front of the other in tandem with a leg? That’s what it was like this week. (taawd thought: Ayden crawled for the first time on my birthday) I ended the week with a trip to McDonald’s for breakfast. Yum. (Note to self: working out is a must today)

After almost two weeks, this cold/sinus infection/allergy/gunk that fills my lungs still hasn’t totally let up its chokehold on my body. I’m sure the lack of sleep and stress hasn’t helped my immunity’s cause.

Now this weekend, I can relax… and relax, I will.

Can I tell you something? There’s something to be said for a two person life. I have laundry to do, I have dishes to put away. I have shopping to take care of. I also need to relax. Everyone needs to take care of themselves every now and then. The focus needs to be shifted away from everything else and shined on themselves. You know what I saying?

I can’t believe summer is over and fall is already here. It’s one of my favorite times of the year, it’s my mother’s least favorite times. I love the leaves, the apple cider, the county fairs (which I missed this year, there’s always next year!) and just everything else that means winter isn’t that far off.

Call me crazy but I can’t wait for the first snow fall. Of course, I’ll be singing a different tune come March when I’ll be again longing for the summer. That’s the reason I moved back to Ohio from Texas. Down in the Lone Star State, you barely get your seasons. They’re something I’ve grown up with all of my life and I miss the changes in the climate and precipitation. Everyone loves a good snowstorm. Nothing quite brings people together. My (still) favorite holiday of the year happens during winter. Christmas is awesome and I can’t wait to see what this year brings.

Weren’t we just talking about the weekend? How did I get myself already into 2009? Here’s to the future, just one day at a time.

When Vampires See The Sun…

My sister asked me to come over to her house to see my nephew off the bus today. Yeah, sure, it’s like 3am in the morning for me even though to the rest of the living, it’s like 3pm.

At least, she has all of her blinds pulled so I don’t have to see the direct sunlight. Although, I do find it a little funny she has a lot of garlic all over the place, crosses and very sharp stakes. I’m sure they all don’t mean anything.

I digress, I stopped at Chipotle before arriving at her humble abode. I love Chipotle in the afternoon but they had the place chilled to a meat locker in there today. I mean I guess they’re trying to save on refrigerator costs.

I rushed here after getting some lunch. There was an accident at the intersection before their home. I thought I was going to be late to see him off the bus. My sister told me the bus arrived around 2:10, it was more like 2:20pm. I don’t have a lot of anxiety but all I could think of was my nephew (he’s in 5th grade and old enough to let himself in) wandering about wondering where everyone was.

I’ll never forget seeing him for the first time or holding him. I’ll never also forget taking care of him for an hour (it seemed like eight) while my sister and brother-in-law ran a quick errand. He started to cry and I didn’t know what to do with him. I mean, he was a little bitty baby at that point. I put in a Motown CD and rocked him to it (I guess literally). I told him that this was the real music even though his parents may not play it too often for him. Believe it or not, the little bugger stopped crying and listened to the Temps, Tops and Supremes until his parents got back home. Hopefully, the boy will always have an ear for the good stuff.

When he was about three or four, he started liking Mambo #5 and Rockefeller Skank. I made him a CD with a bunch of songs on it but the CD magically disappeared. I think my sister has something to do with it.

Growing up, he learned how to open a CD case quickly. After that, he figured out how to put the CD in the player. He didn’t always put it in the correct way but I told him, it’s always the shiny part down. I have a picture of him sitting on the floor around tons of CD’s. It’s a great picture and I’ll try to post it.

That being said, my nephew now is a real stinker. He knows why and it’s not because he follows after his Nana either. He hears you when he wants to hear you. He taunts you until you start taunting him back. He’s also too wrapped up in video games during the time of the year it’s best to get outside and just having some fun throwing the football, frisbee or playing a little baseball.

His current fascination is “All Star” by Smashmouth, even though he’s a little late on that party but whatever. It’s all good, he’s an all star to me!

Monday TV on Tuesday

Talk about a wonder-what-to-do situation…

I love CBS Monday night comedies. Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, Two & A Half Men. There’s a new show but I didn’t DVR it so… I’ll have to catch the repeat or watch it online.

Here’s the problem, Heroes (insert geek comment here) is back on and my DVR isn’t set to record it. It will be, believe me! I’m going to have to watch it online instead of on the HDTV.

I just watched Big Bang Theory and I think they’re going to have another great season. I didn’t even think it would last one season.

I’m watching How I Met Your Mother now and it’s just as good as last season too.

Sleep awaits me right now so I won’t get to see Heroes or Two & A Half Men. I love watching these shows (the comedies) with other people or at least hear their opinions.

I just need some time to actually enjoy the new season of prime time. By the way, the e*trade commercial with the baby talking is hilarious. I think I’d underestimate the creepiness of a clown too.

An Open Letter To The Rumpshakers

Dear Drunken Dancing Women,

Thank you so much for blasting your music from your car under my window last night. Sure, the bars were closed and you didn’t have anywhere to get your groove going so that place was as good as any. I can’t believe I drifted off to sleep early, but you were there to wake me back up and say “Look how proud we are of our sound systems in our cars and see how we can all dance around our vehicles suggestively.” I know you were only thinking of me.

Now, if dancing around a car and yelling at one another were an Olympic sport, I’m sure the judges would have scored you as the best of the best. I watched from my window and saw your routine, circling your cars. I especially thought the time one of you jumped up on the car’s hood and did that booty shake was an added bonus. I’m sure the panel would stood with applause.

Of course, you wanted to share your talents with all of the residents of the nearby apartment buildings. After all, you own 3:38am in the morning, that time is yours and no one can take it away from you. Remember, no one!

The icing on the cake was the point when one of your “team” pulled down her pants to show off all that she had for the judges to see. I mean how could they not award you with the top medal, she was wearing gold metallic pants, I think she planned it that way.

Next time, I beg of you to give me some advanced warning so I can be appropriately dressed and join in with your 22 minutes to 4am antics. Oh, how I too want to sport the gold medals that were obviously bestowed upon you for your showmanship.

You do your parents, friends and families proud, you rumpshakers! You do know how to shake it like a Polaroid picture — Hey Ya!

(taawd’s sorry he didn’t think to get a picture of the women so they could see how good they were…)

13149 Days Old

The whole “years” thing is overrated.  Let’s talk days.  There have been 13, 149 of them in my life.  Some of them, happier, some of them not so happy.  I think there are many happy days ahead of me.  Something just tells me that, call it birthday intuition.
I don’t look back at the last two years with total joy.  There have been certainly some great times (thanks to my friends and family) and there have been some rough patches.  No need for any unpleasantness.  I’m optimistic for what the next year and my future holds.
Certainly this past year has been an improvement.  I moved downtown, became closer with some old friends and got to know newer friends.  My family has grown with the addition of Ayden.  That boy smiled the entire time he was at my place yesterday.  It’s so great to see him and play with the little tike.
I’m up early this morning because, well, because.  I want to get some cleaning around the place done because instead of doing it during my birthweek, I sat on the couch getting over this danged cold.  I’m still a little stuffy and have a cough but for the most part, it’s moved on.  At least I can say that.  My day also involves a trip to Steelyard (again!)  The sales associate at Home Depot cut not one, not two but three keys I needed made incorrectly.  Believe it or not, not one of them fit in my door.  Currently, I don’t have spares and I think my good luck is running thin on the getting lucky I haven’t locked myself out department.  I think I’ll bike there and most definately get the workout in today.
Two quick taawd stories about life “before taawd” or BT as I like to say… When my mother was pregnant with her she loved one food and hated another.  Here’s the funny part, I share those feelings.  I still love Big Macs.  My mother has told me she couldn’t get enough of them when she was carrying me.  I HATE cottage cheese.  Strangely enough, my mother, who likes it, couldn’t stand to look, smell or eat it when she was pregnant with me.  I think it’s so funny how your tastes are formed so early.  Summary: love Big Macs, hate cottage cheese
Anyhow, I got a birthday card this year that makes me absolutely beam.  It really does mean so much to me.  Sometimes people do and say things that do make a difference.  I await the birthday facebooks, myspaces, blog comments, e-mails, texts and phone calls throughout the rest of the day.
In advance, thanks for helping me celebrate my special day,