Tuesday, March 30, 2010
Monday, March 29, 2010
That's because it now sits in his backyard, between the swing set nobody uses and the the plastic playhouse nobody uses. It will soon become the golf cart nobody uses. Especially if he leaves it in the elements. It is currently taking on about 12 inches of rain, which I expect will leave it the rustbucket I so very expect it to become.
But have no fear. Howard has a grand scheme to build a car port between our two houses in which to keep his golf cart. He's under the impression I'm really going to like it because who wouldn't want to look outside at a homemade cinderblock building inches from their guestroom window, where previously there was tropical flora providing privacy and shade?
I'm not too concerned. Before he gets to the cart port, Howard first has to finish the shower, which has been without walls for more than two years, clear out the back patio, which has never been cleared, clean out the garage, which he claims will only take a minute, move the back fence back, which he first proposed three years ago, and of course, take a number of vacations.
Which brings us to the reason he got the golf cart in the first place. To take to Disney World. Why must he have a golf cart at Disney World, you ask? I asked that too. Silly me.
"Cause Fort Wilderness is huge," he shouted. "There's like, 2000 camping spaces."
"And you can't walk?" I asked. "It's good excercise."
"Um...after walking around the parks for 12 hours? And then taking the boat back to the campground?"
I shrugged. "What about bikes?"
"Where are we gonna lock 'em up?" he asked. "They'll get stolen."
"Won't they steal your golf cart too?"
"Not if take the key." I could tell he was getting annoyed, so I pushed it.
"Just seems kinda silly," I said.
"Look, the place is just too big. They don't let you drive your car. There's buses all over the place."
"Buses?" I smiled. Solution found. "Okay. They've got buses."
He rolled his eyes and went inside.
I realize it would limit the blog fodder, but I'm so ready to move. Mrs. Sarcasm says not to rock the boat. We have to live next door to these people. But you know what? They have to live next door to me. And I did not by a house in Podunk. Still, no one should want to get on Moira's bad side.
So I came up with a plan this morning. My best ideas always occur to me in bed. Once the market turns around, we'll schedule an open house while Howard is on one of his many vacations. Then I'll clean up his yard. As it is now it would likely keep anyone from buying my house. If successful, we should be gone before they've recharged the cart.
Friday, March 26, 2010
Thursday, March 25, 2010
Since the geniuses in crew planning couldn’t come up with a less economical use of my time, I now sit in Boston, on a 28 hour layover with nothing to do. 28 hours wouldn’t be so bad if, say, I got in around 10 am and went out at 2 the next day. But that would mean getting home an extra day early, and who wants that? No, I got here at midnight and have a show time tomorrow morning at 4:45. Would you believe they actually tried to convince me I should be grateful for having the entire day off? Excuse me, but if I ain’t home, I ain’t off.
The good thing is I spent most of yesterday revising my long neglected WIP. And I have all of today to do more. It’s been a challenge getting motivated. The re-writes I know are necessary don’t want to be written. Somehow I just did them yesterday, and I was sorry I had to stop to go to work. Although it pains me, I’m quite convinced a big chunk of what I’ve written will ultimately get tossed, along with some characters I really like. Unless I can come up with a great way to work them in, I don’t see them jiving with the new direction.
So it’s back to editing. And it’s about time. I’ve had too many distractions lately for things that are extremely important, but are now, finally out of my hands. So during the wait, I write. But nothing comes easy, does it?
So I get to work yesterday, and my captain couldn’t be more annoying. First, he sticks an EASY button on the console, and plays it over the PA system after each landing.
“That was easy,” pipes through the entire aircraft. Of course my landings yesterday sucked. Sometimes I just don’t try.
Then, he plays this godawful music during the entire boarding process. If it was good music, maybe I wouldn’t care, but I would tire of it at some point. For godsakes man, put away the mp3 and act like a professional. But what professional pilot do you know who carries around a Barbie leg, that he hangs from the compass to point at the pilot who is actually flying that leg. “Your leg,” he says.
Then comes the big kicker (not from the Barbie leg.)
“The hotel bar closes at midnight, so we’ll miss it,” he explained. “But I’ll call ahead before we leave Myrtle Beach and they’ll set some drinks aside. What do you want?”
“Really? I can call ahead. We got all day tomorrow to recover.”
I could see in his eyes that he was judging me, wondering what was wrong with me. Why wouldn’t I want to call ahead to have liquor waiting for me even though the bar’s closed?
Um…because I’m not in high school? Because I don’t drink anyway and sure as hell don’t want to hang out with annoying strangers? Because we’ve only just met and already I wish we hadn’t?
So I’ve done my best to avoid him, mainly by not leaving my room. I’ve got too much to do. Books don’t re-write themselves you know. Well, they do. They just need someone to type them up.
Monday, March 22, 2010
This curiously named fruit stand sits amongst farmland just outside Everglades National Park. Here you will find freshly grown varieties of unimaginable tropical delights, some of which you may never have heard of - things like Jackfruit, Dragon Fruit, Miracle Fruit and Starfruit. They sell flavored honeys, cut sugar cane, boiled peanuts and more. Out back, you'll find a collection of exotic animals. But the big draw, the one that will have you queued for hours, is the fresh fruit milkshakes, most famously, the key lime milkshake. I've had it, but this past weekend I became a fan of the banana-strawberry milkshake. Well worth the wait.
Always wondering why this place is called Robert Is Here, I thought back to my earliest days in flight school, at The Flight School, Inc. When I asked the owner why he'd chosen such a generic name, he answered that the name of your business should tell people what you do. Makes sense. Robert Is Here, not so much. Then I discovered a brochure. Finally, Robert Is Here explained.
In late fall of 1959, six-year-old Robert was set on this very corner with some of his father's cucumber crop and told to "Sell 'em!" Robert sat all day on that Saturday and no one even stopped. That evening, Robert's father decided "there can't be that many people who don't like cucumbers; they must not see this little boy standing here on the corner."
The next day Robert's father placed a sign on each side of the table proclaiming in big red letters "ROBERT IS HERE." By noon Robert had sold all of the cucumbers and walked home. The following weekend, a neighboring farmer added tomatoes to Robert's display and a fruit stand was born.The only question left is, when closed, do they change the sign to Robert Was Here? Or maybe, Robert Went Home? Alas, mystery is a good thing.
So, if you find yourself down this way, stop by Robert Is Here. If nothing else, you can say you've been to Robert Is Here and really, isn't that something? While there, you might see stuff like this...
Thar's babies in that thar nest. Mama Osprey (or Papa) just dropped off a fish. We were so entranced in watching we nearly stepped on this pygmy rattlesnake.
Matt Was Here.
Thursday, March 18, 2010
Subject: Changes to blog policy
In light of recent events, and after careful deliberation, ownership has come to the difficult decision to institute new policies regarding the reading and following of Pensive Sarcasm. It seems some readers may have interpreted the failed 99 Followers Challenge as a blatant grab for attention. While this may be true, management does not take lightly the ramifications of said interpretation; namely, the quitting of following this blog. And wile many new followers have joined during this time, it is not without hardship that we suffer the loss of others.
Harder still, is that with growing readership, it becomes difficult to maintain the close, personal relationship with each follower that this blog was built on. It has recently been brought to the attention of ownership that we were, for a time, unaware of certain new followers, who have chosen to remain faceless. That said, it is paramount we rectify the situation.
Henceforth, the following policies will be in force:
- New followers are requested to leave a comment on the current post. (Not necessarily this post) Introduce yourself to ownership and your fellow followers.
- Followers without avatars will be permitted, but it is management's position they should select and use an avatar post haste. Without one, you may get lost amidst swelling numbers. Concurrently, followers who abandoned an avatar i.e. Kara, are encouraged to return to one.
- Following under an alias, or using more than one avatar is frowned upon. If a follower is having an identity crisis, or suffers an ailment such as MBPS (multiple blogger personality syndrome), management will allow leaves of absence until such condition is treated. So long as a clinical diagnosis is provided, no follower shall lose their position within this blog.
- Under no circumstances will SPAM be tolerated. We would like to leave comments open without taking the drastic measure of regulation. This policy may be revisited in the future.
- Followers are permitted to leave Pensive Sarcasm at any time. However, upon resignation, please leave a comment on the current post. (Not necessarily this post) This will enable management to facilitate your exit interview.
President, CEO, CFO, COO, Editor, Copywriter and Janitor
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
Wondering which of my lies was true? The answers are after the animal pics.
Still trying to find that owl? It’s right in the middle. It was the only way I knew I would be able to find it after I took the picture.
Same thing with the green anole. Right in the middle.
Lies! All lies! Well, that’s a lie. One is true.
1. Early in my Florida years, a pit bull chased me on the beach. Wishing very much to avoid a mauling, I scrambled up a coconut tree just like Gilligan. Little did I know, the dog's very apologetic owner was the organizer of the Coconut Scramble, an annual tree climbing competition. Upon seeing what a dexterous primate I was, he signed me up straightaway, even waiving the entrance fee. I took fourth place with a time of 34 seconds and won a coupon for a coconut daiquiri.
LIE – The nearest coconut tree is next door, in Hotpants yard. Even if I wanted to climb it, she never opens her blinds, so she’d never see me, or give me a prize.
2. For a brief time, I was the fourth lead singer in Van Halen, between Gary Cherone and Sammy Hagar, who returned for one tour in 2004. We had about half an album's worth of material, but I was forced to leave the group over a dispute involving a spoiled potato left in the studio refrigerator.
LIE – And too bad. I’m a much better singer than Lee Roth. But then, who isn’t?
3. While visiting a cousin in New Jersey, I was sent to borrow ice from the next door neighbor. Instead, I went down the street. To Whitney Houston's house. She was out of ice.
True! When I was sixteen I took my first trip to the Garden State. My cousin, who I’d never met, was some big time Newark lawyer. (Yeah, you read that right.) Apparently his firm represented such big time 80’s celebrities as Joe Piscopo, which my cousin pronounced Pis-COP-o. He also lived down the street from Whitney Houston, who was throwing a birthday party for herself the next week and sent out posters of herself as invitations. Her house was set far back, out of sight from the road, but I rang the bell and security answered, quite flummoxed by my request for ice. A rather large and intimidating fellow came out after a few minutes to announce they didn’t have any ice.
4. While selling insurance door to door, a German Shepherd cornered me on a porch. I spent 5 hours pinned between the screen door and the front door until the owner came home.
LIE – But it did happen to a friend of mine.
5. I own a pair of white jeans - my fun jeans - that I used to wear to pick up chicks. Mrs. Sarcasm made me get rid of them when we started dating, but I had them shrink wrapped and keep them in a trunk in my parent's attic.
LIE – I got this idea from a re-run of The Office, where Michael Scott takes his fun jeans to a paper convention, where he throws a party nobody comes to.
6. In high school, I worked at the McDonald's where the McDLT was invented. My friend Prissy Bower came up with the idea, though not the slogan, to keep the hot side hot and the cool side cool.
LIE – I didn’t meet him until many years later, but Prissy Bower claims to have been there. Except the slogan part. I made that up.
7. I have naturally curly hair. Like Will Ferrel in Semi-Pro. I've been using a straightener since I was 17.
LIE – My hair is as straight as Hugh Hefner.
Sunday, March 14, 2010
There's a great horned owl in these trees. Can you find it? Click on the picture for full size.
Camouflage at work. Can you spot the green anole?
UPDATE: Since some of you may have no idea what a green anole is, here is one you can acutally see. I didn't take this one.
Now try finding mine
A pile-O-turtles, a glossy ibis and an alligator soaking up the sun
Just a bunch of weeds, but man, what color!
A great blue heron teeters in the wind
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
The 99 Followers Challenge is now, officially, over. I may have failed to gain 99 followers by the 100th post, but I’ve gained quite a few new readers in the last few weeks. Thanks to everyone who participated, joined, twittered, facebooked and linked the challenge. The last couple days has seen a tremendous increase, and I had planned to put off posting for a couple of days to see if I could get to 99. But something happened that was just too good to keep to myself.
Long time readers know all about the neighbors. If you’re new here, do yourself a favor and familiarize yourself. What follows is a real treat.
About a year and a half ago, new neighbors moved in – Linus and Patty. They have kids Sammy’s age and the whole group quickly became fast friends with Howard and Moira’s brood. They moved to Florida because they have family here. Sadly, Linus has a heart condition that is untreatable. One day, he is going to drop dead. Nothing they can do but accept it. It hasn’t stopped Linus from living though.
He doesn’t work, so he has plenty of time to take it easy, lounging in his garage all day, watching the world go round. At least once a day, he takes his motorcycle for a ride, revving at top volume every time he passes Howard’s house. This is now quite a source of conflict.
It seems, at some point, Howard became convinced that Linus ‘wants’ Moira. Lest you think that’s no big deal, read the shower groomer post.
Now, Linus revving his motorcycle in front of Howard’s house could well be because he lives two doors down and is only accelerating out of his driveway. Of course, when he comes home, he does it as he slows down. Intentional? Probably. And it would piss me off, too, if I didn’t think he was doing it to irk Howard.
Well, because of Linus’s perceived pervertedness, (and let’s face it, if he really is into Moira, that is perverted) the kids are no longer allowed to play together. To combat such venom, Linus painted his house lime green without approval from the Association Board, of which Howard is a member.
Months of legal wrangling ensued. Daily motorcycle rides persisted. At one point Linus and his family had an entire dining room set up in their driveway. Why? Who knows, but it drove Howard batty.
Then came today.
Perhaps a truce? Perhaps some hanky panky. Linus stood in the street, talking to Moira. Moira rested baby Eddie on her hip where he breast-fed. (The hip is convenient when they hang that low.) An odder sight, I can’t recall, but one thing I know – Howard was not home. If this is Linus livin’, so be it. It’s his life, but if I were him, I’d be gouging out my eyes right about now. And I’m still seeing spots from Howard’s mother in a bath towel.
Monday, March 8, 2010
Lesson learned while watching Parks and Recreation - Screw it. Be happy with what you've got.
What I've got is a very exciting future I have hinted at in recent posts. Either no one has picked up on it, or no one cares to ask. And by the way - What the hell? I thought I came up with some pretty good lies in my last post and only two people bothered to guess which one was true. Am I that uninteresting?
I'm ranting I know, but let me get it out. My stress level went way up over the weekend. Thank goodness for cathedral ceilings. Getting stuck in Columbia all day Thursday didn't help. Then, a very important meeting Saturday kept getting delayed. The end result though, all is well. All is better than well. All is fantastic. Despite the general tone of the previous paragraphs, I am a very happy bird.
While not the best part, it may be the one that interests most of my readers. I have a new idea. Woke up with it Thursday morning.
I'm really not sure how popular zombies are these days. Certainly vampires have to be on the way out, right? So what's next? Lots of people write about angels, or fairies, or is it faeries? I don't know. All I have is a character. No story yet, but lots of ideas. So, while Skully the Pirate has yet to be completely revised, and Sister Very Pretty waits patiently at the convent, I must now flesh out the brains of the recently deceased with a rather ironic name. And yes, I meant to write flesh.
Wednesday, March 3, 2010
- Singing loud for all to hear.
- Fleece. If I didn't live in the tropics, I'd drape myself in fleece all day long.
- The colors of the sea.
- Shamrock shakes.
- Losing an entire day to a good book.
- Still having all my hair. And still in the original color.
- Mrs. Sarcasm.
- The idea that a little Korean kid, maybe in a year or so, will call me Dad. (Possibly in Korean)
Moomers - Kara's working on her query. Help her out.
A Squirrel Amongst Lions - 'Cause I want to see what Girl With One Eye does with these rules.
Musings of Amber Murphy - This chick's having a birthday but her hubby doesn't know about her blog.
A Rocket In My Pocket - If that blog title doesn't do it for ya, the chick hates pandas. Seriously.
The Bookshelf Muse - A living, breathing, blogging thesaurus!
Misadventures In Spelling - Forget that she can't spell (really, she's not that bad). Every post comes with a joke.
The Big Litkowski - And I mean this in a good way, sharing Travener's misery makes me happy.
Erica, at Laugh.Write.Play gave me the Creative Writer Award. Erica's from Michigan, like me, but unlike me, she's still stuck there. Check her out. She's got a cool new website too.
This is a fun one. What follows are six lies and one truth. Can you guess which one is real?
- Early in my Florida years, a pit bull chased me on the beach. Wishing very much to avoid a mauling, I scrambled up a coconut tree just like Gilligan. Little did I know, the dog's very apologetic owner was the organizer of the Coconut Scramble, an annual tree climbing competition. Upon seeing what a dexterous primate I was, he signed me up straightaway, even waiving the entrance fee. I took fourth place with a time of 34 seconds and won a coupon for a coconut daiquiri.
- For a brief time, I was the fourth lead singer in Van Halen, between Gary Cherone and Sammy Hagar, who returned for one tour in 2004. We had about half an album's worth of material, but I was forced to leave the group over a dispute involving a spoiled potato left in the studio refrigerator.
- While visiting a cousin in New Jersey, I was sent to borrow ice from the next door neighbor. Instead, I went down the street. To Whitney Houston's house. She was out of ice.
- While selling insurance door to door, a German Shepherd cornered me on a porch. I spent 5 hours pinned between the screen door and the front door until the owner came home.
- I own a pair of white jeans - my fun jeans - that I used to wear to pick up chicks. Mrs. Sarcasm made me get rid of them when we started dating, but I had them shrink wrapped and keep them in a trunk in my parent's attic.
- In high school, I worked at the McDonald's where the McDLT was invented. My friend Prissy Bower came up with the idea, though not the slogan, to keep the hot side hot and the cool side cool.
- I have naturally curly hair. Like Will Ferrel in Semi-Pro. I've been using a straightener since I was 17.
Cruising Altitude - Though I suspect DL's truths might be more fun.
Where Lady Bugs Roar - Check out Wendy's Flashy Fiction bits. You know she can lie.
Natalie Bahm - I think Natalie's holding back. Knock us out!
Kristen Creative - Look at Kristen's eyes. I don't see an ounce of truth.
Jon's Life. Or Other Odd People Doing Odd Things. - Jon is one odd duck.