Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Random Capitalization Run Amok

Not everyone is a Rhodes Scholar.  And you sure don't need an advanced degree to become an airline pilot.   I have the proof.  There is a super-secret pilot forum where super-(ahem)-smart pilots spend a good deal of time griping about the chosen profession they despise.  One of these super-geniuses is shouting loud for all to read and I can't leave it alone.  So here are all the best parts.   The beauty is I know this Einstein.  I can't wait to fly with him again.

Must not laugh.  Must not laugh.

Reprinted without permission, unedited. Except where it gets wordy.  Hence the ...  

My comments are in blue.

There is a Very serious CBA Conflict both Moral and Ethical issue Presented to us by the "Subsription" Service Charge being forced upon us to Fully Particiapte in the new Electronic Shift Trade System."
Misspelling I can live with.  It's the random capitalization  I enjoy the most.  This, by the way, is just the opening salvo, so you know it only gets better.  It's really not necessary to read everything.  I will just highlight my favorite parts.
Provided ... communication todate with our Local Reps with regard to this issue listed from Most recent on top to first. 
I am in process of ... to seek personal re-embusment for the ... subscriptions costs charge to me  
Well, I can't overlook all the misspelling. What follows is taken from an email to our union leadership, which he posted on the forum. 
 Who ever is responsible ... appears to be either in-sensitive ... and/or has some personal stake in its implantation.

There are a great number of hyphenated words as well.  Someone needs to implant the idea of spell check.
 There is a significant finical issue here pilot group wide at stake

I really don't know what he was going for here.  Financial, perhaps.  I prefer not to know.
 I am afraid weather the semantics of the definition of a truly "additional' i.e. "Add-On" service vice an essential part of Electronic Shift Trading, critical to making the entire concept of immediate award processing fair, which has been chronologically "added on" after its initial implementation or not is mute

I'm sorry.  I couldn't hear that last part.  Take this sentence for what it is worth.  And then please tell me what it is worth.  It confuses me at every attempt. 
 I don't see how this clause ... could be any Clearer ?

My question regarding this question is what constitutes a question?  I thought I knew.  Now I'm not so Clear.
 I feel my earlier description ... has been mis-understood.

I dis-agree.  It's quite Clear.
 The Mere Physical constraint ... of the true available open trips Vice the actual true number ....  
This is the second time he's used vice.  Is it a verb?  A noun?  I'm con-fused.
The Concept ... is the Same concept as that behind company's effort to Market the ... Subscription service ...
 Golly, I thought, with more melancholy than gollys normally carry.
Once the success of this program in effect collecting 10's of thousands of Dollars Back from our employees
Doesn't that look like the name of a night club?  Or maybe a country-western bar?  I know, a new game show!
Not all of Us Have to take a shower after work ?
I'll leave you to speculate on the context here.  Just be sure to leave a space for punctuation.
To Charge for them ... you were to Charge not ... but to Charge us for their Delivery
This reminds me.  I must take charge of END Baby's delivery.  

Poor bastard.  Someone actually called him out on his grammar.  Here is his response:
 I am sorry too you are distracted from the core of the issue presented here by my grammtical mistakes and poor spelling.
 Grammticalling makes me miss Grandma.
 This is a very serious issue...  unless you PAY to Play.   A Practice specificly intended ... with a common understanding. 

Each and every Parings represnted ... carries a specific Cash Value in pay.  Your ablity to earn ,,, is not a Frivolous Issue.  Please do not treat it as such by focusing on my high school english to the point you lose sight of the very real grievance here.   This directly affects you.
And I have been moved to mock.
I have dared to reach out to the Pilot group as a whole becuase,
Note the comma. And the misspelling.
Absent a Formal Defence presented ... against the Company ... It is incumbant on ALL ... pay these subsriptions fee's who choose to fully particapte ... to file a formal grieveance ...  restitution of the fee's collected.

Frank States the issue will be brought to and considered...
But only if the fee's agree.
Thank Heavens our planes are highly automated. 

I'm going to Hell.

Friday, June 24, 2011

The Neurotic In Me

END Baby is coming any day now.  Ah, let me explain about END Baby.  You'll recall that we are planning on adopting a Korean, to whom we've long referred as Our Korean.  Then Momma Sarcasm went and got pregnant, screwing up our adoption plans.  We needed a name for conversational purposes, but we've chosen not to learn the sex until we meet this new baby.  So we came up with something better than the generic, The Baby, that wouldn't be confused with Our Korean. 

Ethnically Non-Diverse Baby, or END Baby.

I, as an airline pilot, often travel for work.  To fill the void as the count winds down, my mother-in-law has come from Michigan for two weeks and three days.  It gave me great comfort to know she would take the reigns should END Baby make an early arrival whilst I traveled.  END Baby is still not due for a few more weeks, but the doctor said it could well come any day.  So I'm done working.  But my mother-in-law isn't done visiting.  And now, the neurotic in me struggles to stay inside. 

To be clear, she is doing lots to help; preparing and freezing weeks of meals; cleaning; laundering, washing dishes; mothering her own baby.  Of course the flip side is that she is doing it all in my house. 

Let me be clear.  I can NOT stand company.  I don't care who it is, I do not want anyone in my home who doesn't already live there.  I don't even like answering the door for the delivery guy.  It is my sanctuary and has been designed for that purpose.  Throw in someone who does not belong and all sense of propriety is gone.  And whilst I understand that both END Baby and Our Korean will be like company that never leaves, I hope to be more accepting of them.

All of this has me analyzing my psyche.  I find I truly am neurotic.  For instance, this morning I ran some laundry.  Without my knowledge, my aforementioned mother-in-law folded it.  Very helpful.  Except...

She folds wrong.  Just as you would find in a store, freshly laundered shirts must be presented chest up, with the bottom tucked under and the sleeves wrapped around back.  And outside out.  At least she didn't go into my drawers to put away my drawers.  Of course this only left me fighting the urge to re-fold everything. 

She is here to help.  She is here to help.

She does the dishes wrong and openly admits it.  Apparently, I have earned a reputation as a "dishwasher Nazi," for repeatedly insisting my loading guidelines be followed.  This has been a fifteen-year battle with Momma Sarcasm.  I now see where she gets it.

She is helping.

I gave up my restroom.  My sanctuary within my sanctuary.  It is neat.  It is minimalistic.  It is no longer my own.  Yet I notice the toothbrush holder sits empty.  The cup is bone dry.  How does she rinse her mouth after brushing, I asked?  She does not, she answered with a laugh, as though the mere suggestion were ludicrous.  She runs the brush under the faucet and then sucks water from the bristles.  Barbaric.

I need help. 

I fear for my children.  I'd better possess powerfully dominant genes.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

When To Say When?

Does there ever come a time in your writing when you get bored?  And not because your story is boring, although that can certainly be the case, but maybe you've been working on something so long, it becomes a chore.  Or maybe you come up with a new idea whilst in the midst of an old one.  Then what do you do?  How realistic is writing two completely different pieces at the same time?  Or more than two?  Can novels and short stories exist in the same universe that is a writer's mind?  At what point must you set one down to concentrate on the other?

The saving grace of the unpublished writer is the freedom to ditch something old for something new.  Or even ditching something new to go back to something old.  Either way, the passion better be strong, or everything is going to suffer. 

Does anyone else have these problems?

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Howard And The Mulch Pile

Some of the neighbors have spruced up their yards, bringing in professional landscapers to make things nice.  My next-door neighbor, Howard, has been lamenting how awful his yard looks.  I've been pointing out how awful it's looked for years to no avail.  I guess seeing everyone else's results spurred Howard to action.  Not that he called in a professional or anything, despite my encouragement.  He decided to go all Sarah Palin on the neighborhood.

He has an area near the front door that has, over the years, been home to a fountain, a park bench, a rock garden and currently all of the above, buried under some pretty thick grass.  Once he got to work there was no stopping him.  Except when NASCAR was on.  Or it looked like it might rain.  Or he'd had to go to work for an hour that day.  Or the kids were sick.  Or Disney was only three hours away.

So instead of the poured concrete borders that come in a variety of colors and shapes, are resistant to infestation and don't fade in the sun, Howard decided to put down wooden railroad ties, that will fade in the sun, but only after they disintegrate under the daily South Florida downpours and will then be devoured by termites.

But Howard sawed and cut.  Not carefully of course.  You can see how the corners don't exactly line up.  No problem, just stick a stray scrap of wood in the gap.  And what about all that grass?  Howard's plan to fill the area with mulch was a good one, but I advised he dig up the grass first, lest it continue growing through the mulch.  Not necessary, he assured me.  He'd just cover it. That'll kill the grass.  Click on the pic for a closer look at how that's working out, two weeks later.

And, you'll notice, out by the curb lay the mutilated remains of an old desk.  An unfortunate, yet vital sacrifice, necessary to ensure the dreaded return of Howard's fish tank.

To Be Continued...

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Top Ten Fewer Things In My Life

This baby's changing things.  Here are a few, in the order in which I think them up.

10.  Sleep - They say sleep now, because we'll never get it back.  Well, why the hell am I so tired already?  I'm still getting my eight hours?  Am I that old?

9.  Brown hair - This one is disturbing in two ways.  First, I've always prided myself on still having all of my hair, still in the original color.  This kid hasn't even been born yet and I'm noticing little white hairs.  Either I'm aging or there is a recessive albino gene that is finally making itself known.  Yet for some reason, this doesn't bother me, which is the second part that is deeply disturbing.

8.  Aviation magazines -  Let me put it this way:  Do you think a cashier wants to read about cash registers all day long*?  Certainly not.  Momma Sarcasm no longer works in an advertising agency where one of the accounts had something to do with something to do with flying.  Every week she'd bring home magazines she'd been given because people assumed I wanted to read them.  I do not.  But she has a little problem saying no. Except to me.  

7.  Writing time - I can't write with her in the house.  It's like pulling my pilot suitcase with my left hand, or riding an escalator without holding on.  It throws off my equilibrium and I'm certain I will plummet to my death.

6.  McFlurries - Did you know pregnant women can't have soft-serve ice cream? Something about breeding harmful bacteria, or some such thing.  This sucks.  We used to have a lot of these.  And it's hot as frak!  I could still eat them in front of her but would end bad for me.  Not that it would affect everything...

5.  Sex - I know you can still have sex during pregnancy, but are you kidding me?  How creepy is that?  It is, in every way, the wrong kind of threesome.

4.  Work - Not everything on this list is bad.  I'm taking all of July off.  As much of August as I can.  Work sucks.  Even when you like it.

3.  Oprah -  Not really pregnancy related, and I suppose this applies to almost everyone, but I'm running out of ideas.

2. TV shows - My entire Tuesday night lineup got cancelled.  Smallville is done.  Steve Carrell left The Office.  In a way, I'm glad.  Serial telly is such a timesuck.  At least I've got a few years of Sesame Street to look forward to.

1.  My own car - Momma Sarcasm's car don't work for baby tot'n.  It's old, but it's paid for, so we're swappin'.  I don't know why I'm suddenly writin' like a redneck.  Maybe caus'n our cable company done added a bunch of channels and we now get the Dukes of Hazzard every night.  YeeeeeHOOOO!

*I almost quoted Kumar, from Harold and Kumar go to White Castle - "Just cause you're hung like a moose doesn't mean you gotta do porn."
So true.  And a much better Wilson Phillips lip-syncing scene than Bridesmaids.