Today I went shopping with my mom for the 2nd time this week. Part of it was grocery shopping, even. Visited my grandma and brought her groceries. We went to eat at Fazolis. Yesterday I had a nice visit with Richard & Shirley while the kids played with Casey. Today the kids went to Ryan’s and played all day. I picked them up around 4pm and took them all to see Night at the Museum.

I saw my old house. A recent ice storm took down a LOT of limbs from the trees. They’re all over the yard and nobody has picked them up, and they knocked down the power and cable lines which haven’t been fixed. The people that rented from me turned into complete retards after I left. For one thing, they built a treehouse in the tree in the front yard. It’s a Dogwood tree. It’s not the kind of tree you build a tree house in. What’s even worse is that they painted it red and yellow. And they painted a few of the tree branches red and yellow too. It looks so retarded. Callie told me that the basement stairwell was filled to the top with trash. And that the house inside is completely trashed too. They ripped out the carpeting too, and I’m assuming that they’re the ones who broke into my side, stole my bed, and left all the doors open.


This is the first time I’ve stayed at my parents house in 12 years now. Before this, it was when the Dino Allsman incident occurred. Oh wait, Colleen and I stayed here once or twice, while passing through the state. In ’95 and ’97. But we stayed in their trailer so it’s not the same! Anyway, it’s weird being in my old room again. Seeing the shadows and light come into the room at night in the same way and all that crap.

I spent a lot of this week in my storage space, trying to empty it out. Originally, my plan was to store things for a year, tops. My brother was going to let me use a trailer that he had access to and drive all my junk across the country to Oregon. That didn’t happen because I decided that I couldn’t afford the gas to do that. So my new plan is to sell everything of value, donate everything that’s not important to me, and bring the rest back, either in suitcases on the plane or by mailing them to myself.

I doubt I’ll get it all done during this visit, but I’ve made major progress. I sold the washer & dryer on the first day I was here. Then I sold a few other miscellaneous things and donated a ton to the Salvation Army. I gave them several stereos, some cool toys of Emilys (with her permission) my entire kitchen (plates, cups, glasses, silverware, toaster, waffle iron, pots, etc.) My dad was impressed with with way Craigslist worked so he had me list an old guitar of his. He made $75 on it the next day. I donated tons more to Salvation Army, just misc. things like fans, ice chests, alarm clocks, and lots more that I can’t remember. A few large, stuffed animals, puzzles, trash cans. Just so much stuff. They love me there now. And I got receipts for it all so I can put it on my taxes. They wouldn’t take RijilV’s juggling knives for some reason.
The hardest part is actually throwing stuff away. I filled an entire trashbag full of phones. Another filled with answering machines. Other bags were filled with all kinds of wire. GOOD wire, like coax, cat5, phone wire, electrical wire. TONS of electronic components. Bits of circuit boards, LEDs, microchips, resisters, all still in the packaging. Fried tone dialer circuit boards. Stuff I’ve been collecting for more than twenty YEARS is now in the city dump. The kind of stuff that people at a 2600 meeting would kill to have. I’ve thrown away soldering irons, solder, screwdriver sets. Signs that were stolen from random places (hotel room numbers, No Smoking, Restrooms, etc).

I can’t think of what else. But, you know, just good STUFF. I know I didn’t really need most of it and probably wouldn’t have used most of it. But it’s hard to let some of this stuff go. And it’s always been nice just to have stuff like this laying around. When I get involved in some weird project, I always have random weird stuff lying around to contribute to it. Or if somebody happens to need 200′ of coax or a few dozen PS/2 mouse converters, I can be like, “Oh, I have that!” And I threw out a lot of junk before I moved out of the old house too. But there was still so much of it.

At the same time, though, it feels great to be rid of all this stuff. My place in Oregon isn’t big enough to accommodate it all anyway. And it’ll be nice to be rid of 10 cubic feet of stuff that I don’t really need. Much easier to stay organized, much easier to move. It felt great last year to just dump everything and move on after 10 years of being somewhat stable. It feels kind of like that again.

Oh yeah, the kids came with me to the storage thing a couple of times. And it ruled, watching them rediscover all this old stuff of theirs. They were so excited to find a lot of it. They’d completely forgotten about so much. And I let them fill up a duffel bag full of toys to bring back to my parents house. I plan to let them each have one suitcase to fill with Christmas toys and things from storage. I mailed myself a giant box of all of our old DVDs. That’s one thing I prefer not to part with. I mailed a box of 3 pillows, too, thinking that would be cheap to mail. And it was $16! I threw some Hotwheels in the middle, too, but that shouldn’t have been that expensive. I’m going to give UPS a try for mailing my keyboard.

I’d say I cut my completely packed 10×12 storage unit down to probably 10×6, if not more. And I’ve still got more to sell and give away to the salvation army. I might look into finding a smaller storage unit somewhere if it’s a considerable difference. And I’ll probably wait until this summer to try and sell the rest of it. I’ve got 3 or 4 70 quart plastic boxes full of books. I don’t know what to do about those. I hate to give away or sell books but I may have to. Then again, if I drive out this summer, I could load the car up with a lot of those. Hrmmmm. And if I drive and the kids fly, they can lug more suitcases full of stuff again!

Anyway, I’m happy to be rid of so much of this. And it’ll be nice to bring a lot of it back to Oregon. I miss the DVDs, a lot of my office stuff, papers, photo albums, etc. Hopefully not too much of it ends up getting crushed by the airport throwers.

I’m in Illinois

The flight was okay. Our 2nd flight was delayed by an hour, which isn’t too bad of a thing. My brother & his girlfriend picked us up. Before I left, I listed a few things from storage on Craigslist and some lady came by today to pick up my old washer & dryer. And our old Christmas tree. Went shopping with mom, dad took me to storage. Later I drove to St. Louis to drop off a FedEx envelope and then went back to storage to organize a few things. Stayed there probably two hours, going through boxes, labeling them, and taking pictures for Craigslist.

My mom showed me an old jacket of mine this evening. Said she was going through a closet the other day and found it. I recognized it as the jacket that I wore in Jr. High. The thing was, the jacket had a speaker sewn into the back of it. Like, facing towards whoever would be behind me. And there were wires running through it, into a hole in the pocket.

In the pocket was a small jumble of wires, connected to a battery, a push button, and a piezo buzzer. This was all sewn into the pocket area. There was also a spare battery in the pocket. Pushing the button made the piezo buzzer work (yes, after 20 years it still buzzed). I’m not sure what the speaker was for but it was wired to a 1/8″ jack and wasn’t a part of the rest of it. As far as I can tell, anyway. I have no idea what any of it was for. I think I remember sewing the speaker into the jacket but I don’t remember what it’s purpose was. Here’s some pics…


A month ago, I happened across Sylvia’s Myspace. Sylvia is the girl who I looted a 7-Eleven with in 1993. We went our separate ways later that year and haven’t talked since then, except the occasional prank calls Zak and I would make to her in the mid 90’s. So I sent her a message. It went like this:

Wow, Sylvia on Myspace! It’s good to see you. Looks like you’re doing great. I wonder if you hate me. Or even remember me. If you don’t wanna write back, I understand and I won’t bug you anymore. But…hi! :)


The next day, I receive a reply from her. Here it is:

hi ok there is no way i can ever forget you as much as i wish i could i can’t cause you was a big part of my life for some time do i hate you no i don’t cause that would take up too much of my time and energy do i wish you would forget me yes i am married to a wonderful man with kids he knows nothing of you or what my life was like back then i’m not trying to be rude or mean i’ve made peace with my life and would like to keep it that way and yes after many years of therapy i can say that i am at peace with everything that went on in my younger days i’ve grew up and changed i’m a respected person in my comunity now i wish you no ill harm or want anything bad for you i hope you have a happy and fullfilling life and i hope that you find some meaningfull and lasting joy i also do not hold you responsible for anything that may of happened in our past i have let go of my grudges and as far as bugging me i can’t say that you did it was just a big shock to hear from you after all these years so ok now i wrote you back and i hope you understand i had to get that out and off my chest

Is she saying she went through therapy because of me? Her giant paragraph is kind of hard to understand. How is it that somebody who spends all their free time reading books can be a complete failure at grammar, spelling, punctuation, and even paragraphs? Colleen’s the same way, reads nonstop but fucks up constantly with simple writing. I can understand someone writing like that if they never read. But I’m talking about complete bookworms! I’m not trying to put her down, just seems strange to me.

I wrote her back one more time…

Hi again. I’m guessing you’d prefer not to keep in touch then. That’s cool with me. I was just searching for random old friends on Myspace last night and happened across your profile. I wasn’t trying to upset you, I just enjoy catching up with people from my past. I’m happy to hear everything is going well for you! If you ever change your mind and want to do some catching up, I’ll be here.


I think it’s crazy that she’s married to a guy and has kids, but hasn’t told him about her past. You’d think that robbing a 7-Eleven, spending a couple weeks in jail, and then spending a couple years on probation for it would be worth mentioning to someone you’re in a relationship with. Me and her were together for an entire year, and we traveled the country together! The reason she even lives in the state that she lives in now is because I helped her find her birth mother and brother. They even met me! Did she tell them to keep quiet about me?

Every girlfriend I’ve had has known about all my previous long-term relationships. And they’ve known about the 7-Eleven incident. You can’t just leave out a giant chunk of your life like that. Especially if it’s interesting! We hitchhiked, flew on stolen credit cards, spent months in a college dorm, explored Hollywood together, had jobs together, spent time in the back of police cars together!

Back in 1995, it’d been at least a year since I’d spoken with Sylvia. Out of nowhere, she calls and leaves a message on the PLA voicemail number in Texas. But she doesn’t say she’s Sylvia. Instead she claims she’s the cousin of some kids we used to take care of in Highland, Illinois. She tells me that a couple of them were in a horrible car accident and that they were in the hospital and burned really bad. Her voice was unmistakable.

The next day I called around to a few hospitals to see if it was true. As far as I could tell, it wasn’t. I’d been pranked. I could only assume that she was retaliating because Zak and I had been harassing her friend Chris Tomkinson for the past year and a half. So I tracked her down quite easily. Me and Zak harassed her until she eventually changed her number and/or moved. A month later I tracked her down again and the process repeated several times over the next year. By 1996 we quit and I never heard from her again, until last month. It’s not like it was unprovoked harassment, though!

Jammie says I should clue her husband in on Sylvia’s past. And as hilarious of a thought that is, I’m not going to do it. I wonder what else Sylvia’s husband doesn’t know about. I wonder if he even knows that she had a couple kids when she was 14 that she gave up for adoption. That’d be nuts not to tell your husband that. I bet she hasn’t. I should track down the kids and set up a reunion on Maury!


An email from someone named Alex Cervantes…

I want to record my girlfriends cell phone conversations. She uses direct connect (walkie talkie) 95% of the time. Can you help, or point me in the right direction?

A reply from me…

You need to buy her flowers instead. (I’m serious)


I get these a lot. And if you look at the page on recording phone calls, you’ll see probably 100 comments on there from people wanting to tap their spouse’s phone or their kid’s phone. It’s funny to read through.

Phone Mob

I got up at 5:15 this morning. On a Saturday. Why? To participate in a Phone Mob. I never sleep well when I know I have to get up that early and last night was no exception. I was up a lot. I wouldn’t say I slept more than 2 hours at a time, probably less. I think I had dreams that I was sleeping bad too, which made it worse. And I had a dream that I got up for the stupid Mob and nobody showed up but me. That was right before I actually woke up.

The mob was fun. I sat at the computer for 4 hours for it and there were at least 10 people in the chat room the entire time. We all got through to a radio station dozens of times over that 4 hours and they sure weren’t happy about it. Regular listener response could have been better, but it was still good stuff. Thanks for organizing that, NWBell!

I really wanted to bike to Corvallis today but it kept raining. So I drove there instead, spent a few hours checking out downtown Corvallis. Stopped in a bar for lunch. Bought a book on sign language at The Book Bin. It’s for the kids, not me. They know a little sign language, now they’ll know more. The few businesses in Corvallis that I remember from 1996 don’t seem to be around anymore. For some reason, in 1996, I used to spend a lot of time in downtown Corvallis with Emily when she was just a couple months old. I can’t remember why. But I know the cafe we used to frequent isn’t there anymore.

I attempted to nap at some point today but that didn’t happen. I kept flipping between Idle Hands and Romy & Michelle’s High School Reunion which kept me awake. Stupid cable. Played some video games, messed around on the internet. I’m boring. I have an equally fun-filled day planned tomorrow. Well, actually, I probably won’t leave the house tomorrow. So it’ll be even more sarcastically fun-filled than today was.

Reason #129 of why I prefer not to mingle with the locals around here

Last night, around 11pm, my phone beeps. It was a text message from a local number that I didn’t recognize. It said:

Sex is like eating at kfc once your done nibbling on breast and thighs you always have a nice greasy box to put your bone in! Later Tater

I look at the number with Fone Finder and see that it’s a Verizon cell from Lebanon, Oregon. A wrong number, obviously. So I reply back:

OMG, that’s the best analogy EVAR!

They replied with:

Ya u like that prity impresive aint it.

And I replied with this:

I was hoping for a WHO THE FUCK ARE YOU??? or something, but no luck with that. I never got another text message from them again.

The Big Beef Bueno Podcast Episode 5 – Tribute

Some tribute type stuff to The Bastardcast, Nate and Di, and The RBPC Show. A call to an auto repair shop about urine, some voicemails and Beat The Geeks in Detroit. Music in this episode is mostly by Nerf Herder. The show runs about 14 minutes and 48 seconds.

Nate & Di
Nerf Herder on Wikipedia
Nerf Herder Myspace

Paraphrasing, lights

I woke up at 4:30am today. After an hour of lying there, I decided sleep was hopeless and got up for the day. Maybe this will get me back on my old schedule of not staying up so late at night.

The ButtonsFriday Jarod and I gave a kickass presentation on summaries, paraphrasing and quotations to the class. It lasted about 20 minutes and included clips from a TV show, clips from a LiveJournal, clips from comic strips, Jarod’s music video on paraphrasing, including a bald guy with PARAPHRASE written on his head, handouts, a powerpoint presentation and buttons at the end of it all. A few of the students were wearing their buttons as they left class. The handout that we gave everyone looked a little something like this:


When you paraphrase, you follow very closely the author

Saving Electricity

Yesterday at Goodwill I picked up one of those old 80’s power switch box thingies for $6.00. They’re the kind that people used to have sitting under their monitors to switch various computer components on and off. Back in the days when you didn’t have to “power down” your computer – you just switched it off while all your stuff was still on the screen. Here’s where I put it:

I had to take the thing apart to drill holes in the top so I could mount it to the bottom of the desk. And while it was apart I scrubbed the 20 years of dust off of it. I bought a few extension cords too and I’m plugging in everything that runs on an AC/DC transformer. That way I can switch off those energy-sucking adapters instead of leaving them running 24/7.

I’m not sure if it’ll make much noticeable difference in my power bill or not. My electric bill usually only runs $30 or so. So it might. Probably take me a few years to make back the $6.00 I spent on this power swich box. But at the very least, it’ll sure make my room a lot less brighter at night. Damn LEDs…

Before I moved to Oregon, I had this crazy plan to put some kind of centralized DC power supply in my house and then run 12 volt hookups to every room. THEN I was going to start ripping the transformers out of all my household appliances and convert them to 12 volt power. Too bad I never got around to that before I moved.

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