Baboon Pirates

Scribbles and Scrawls from an unrepentant swashbuckling primate.

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Location: Texas, United States

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Binge Watching Fatigue

TV Fun

As mentioned earlier, I was binging through several seasons of a TV show in order to get caught up.  In this case, it's 'Sons of Anarchy'.  Season 7 just began, and I needed to get through Season 6 before the episodes online timed out.

Good show, but I started to get character fatigue somewhere in Season 4. When you start to watch the same people pull the same shit episode after episode, you kind of hope they'll get whacked and someone new & fresh will get brought in.

I don't suppose this would be such an issue if you spread out the episodes over months and years, but concentrated inside a week?  Oy....

The kicker is that if you measured it in real time, 'Sons' has spent 7+ years on TV, and the plotline hasn't moved much past 2-2.5 years, even adding in some jail time for the crew.

For a real "WTF?" experience on SOA, don't miss Walton Goggins (who played Shane Vendrell on 'The Shield', and Boyd Crowder on 'Justified') as the tranny Venus Van Dam.  How the hell did they make those tits look that real??

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Welcome To The Dark Side

The Horror...  The Horror...

OK, full disclosure.   I often forget whether or not I've posted stuff either here or on the Book of Face, so just so everyone feels my shame, here's the announcement.

After decades of loyally grasping of the spiritual schlongs of Wozniak & Jobs, I have released my death grip on Apple products, and purchased not just one, but TWO Windows machines.

(Pause while the thunderflashes fade and the ground trembling subsides...)

As they say, an offer was made that I could not refuse on a couple of guvmint surplus machines.  I got an HP desktop unit that will eventually be a gaming machine, and a Panasonic Toughbook laptop for general banging around.

I'm still lacking a video card and some other odds & ends for the gamer tower but the laptop's up and running.

Here's the proof of my ignominious perfidy to the Cupertino Regime:

Feel free to mock me in the comments.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Questionable Methods Of Recreation

Or, Do They Sell Visine By The Quart?

It's not terribly out of character for El Capitan to hole up for the weekend.  If there's nothing much going on around town, and I'm burnt out on the usual routine of book shopping & hanging at the cigar shop, I'll spend a weekend doing my imitation of a hibernating bear.

But all that changed recently...

See, I bought that laptop.  It's got Wi-Fi.  You can drag it into the bear cave with you.

And once there, you can binge-watch an entire season of a TV show in one weekend.  Hell, you can do it in one day if you can stay conscious long enough.

Sigh.  Binge-watching.  Gonna be the death of me...  I need to figure out how to do a time-lock on the DVD drive so it only works for 4 hours out of every 24.

Friday, September 19, 2014

No Gun For You!!

Neither A Borrower Nor A Lender Be!

Well, damn...

This was supposed to be a Buy-A-Gun weekend.  I'd spent months & months banking some spare shekels, and I finally had enough in reserve to be able to cover the car repairs, the usual monthly expenses, the prescription renewals, and a shiny new shotgun.

Well, a shiny old shotgun, anyway.  I'm not all that confident in the 12 ga. coach gun in anything other than home defense or repelling Comanches from the Wells Fargo wagon.   Those 18" barrels are great for scattering a goblin's shit to the four winds, but not all that efficient at reaching out 50 yards to pluck a duck out of the air.

Hence the desire for a pre-owned Remington 870 or a Winchester Model 12 with a longer barrel.  You can get a Remmy all day long for less than $400, and often, less than $300 if you shop around.

Not this month, though.  Got a call from my sister asking for a quick loan to cover some unexpected expenses.

In family-speak, this translates as "Can you give me some money, which you'll never, ever see again?"

Sigh.  Goodbye, shotgun.

Hey, what are you gonna do?  I've only got one sister, and to her credit she doesn't withdraw from the Bank of Brother more than once every few years...

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Swimming In The Streets

Water, Water Everywhere!

Well, it's monsoon season here in H-Town.  It's been rainy all week, but the past two days have seen some pretty torrential downpours.

Coming into downtown this morning I had the windshield wipers on as high as they would go, and it was barely keeping things visible.  The city's drainage system does a pretty good job, but any time there's a gullywasher, things back up, and we all start plowing through deep puddles.

As usual, there's the crop of idiots that drive as if it's bone dry.  Makes me wish for a turret-mounted 20mm cannon in the truck bed...

Speaking of truck beds, I expect there'll be a foot of water in back of the truck when I get off work.  I had enough in there this morning to float a bass boat.  In the Dodge pickup I had a decade ago, there were drain plugs in the bed.  The Ford has a bedliner, and holds on to the water until you start moving, when it drains off the tailgate.

I suppose you could drill some holes, but I'd think that would trap water between the bedliner and bed, and rust things out pretty quick.

Ah, well.  I'll just call it the Ford duck pond...

Friday, September 12, 2014

Those Who Cannot Remember The Past...

...Are Condemned To Wear The Same Ugly Clothes!

Had a bit of a shock yesterday evening.  I was waiting in the drive-thru at the local Sonic for my dinner to be delivered via car-hop, when I saw something that flashed me back in time almost 30 years...

'Twas a giant blue bow perched on the back of a young gal's head.

OK, let me take you back in time to Autumn, 1986.

In terms of fashion, certain items had run their course.  The Preppie look had died out, parachute pants had been consigned to the back of the closet, and the Miami Vice pastels were giving way to brighter colors and bigger shoulders.

One thing you could reliably count on was that on any college campus, you were certain to find the social sororities dictating what fashion was de rigueur, and no deviation would be permitted amongst the herd until the next fashion craze came along.

So, what was the thing for those young ladies to wear?

Big hair bows and clown suits.

A clown suit, you ask?  They looked kinda like this, only in bright primary colors, usually in a plainer fabric, with contrasting collar, cuffs and belt.  Add a big poofy wig and a red foam nose, and you had yourself a pretty good clown, hence the name...

The hair bows were ginormous.  Easily 4-5 inches high and 6+ inches across, they looked like a prize-winning Hercules moth pinned to their noggin.

At any rate, "Bowheads in Clownsuits" was the name bestowed upon the gaggle of gals that followed haute couture that fall.

No wonder I got such a shock.  God forbid we have to relive the late 80's.  I lost far too many brain cells in those years...

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Cocktails Of Questionable Taste

De Gustibus Non Disputandem!

Y'know, the older I get, the simpler I prefer things to be.  Sure, a steak can be pretty good with a huge gloppy pile of grilled 'shrooms & onions mixed up with a creamy sauce dumped on top, but is it really preferable to one simply sprinkled with salt & pepper and expertly grilled?

Same deal with the alcoholic beverages.  These days, I don't much care for the frou-frou cocktails, with half a dozen rare liqueurs added in a particular order, after the glass has been greased with the rind of obscure tropical citrus fruits.

Nope, a slug of quality bourbon with a splash of spring water suits me fine.  A good domestic pilsner or bock is preferable in my advancing years to some exceedingly hoppy IPA or some Belch wheat beer brewed with essence of kumquat by some obscure sect of left-handed monks.

It was not always so.

Once upon a time, I really, really liked my liquor sweet & strong, and the preferred trio was as follows.

Each one starts with a highball glass filled with ice.  Then, the fun begins.

BRAVE BULL - Equal parts Kahlua and gold tequila.   After 6-8 of these, remember to lean WAY forward so you don't get puke on your shoes when you dial up Ralph on the big white phone.

THE GODFATHER - Equal parts Amaretto di Saronno liqueur and a fairly robust single malt Scotch, the peatier, the better.  You'll be speaking like Marlon Brando impersonating Sean Connery in no time.

RUSTY NAIL - Equal parts Drambuie liqueur and scotch whiskey.   Best to lock up the claymores and bagpipes before consuming these in any quantity.

There's been a few honey/bourbon based offerings from the usual suspects in the past few years.  These are all variations on the basic sweet/strong theme.  I'd imagine you could mix one with a straight shot of 100+ proof bourbon and have the beginnings of a new and more dangerous cocktail than those already listed.


Friday, September 05, 2014

That Was The Week That Was

At Least I Got Paid Today!

Well, glad that's over with.  Talk about a kidneystone of a week...

Let's recap:

Monday was a holiday.  Nothing wrong with that.  I spent a good chunk of the day sitting in the cigar shop, doing as little as possible.  That was the high point.

Tuesday.  Good start to the day, off to work a bit early, and it's good weather, good traffic, and then, not 3 miles from work, *COUGHSPUTTERCOUGH* the engine on the Ford starts doing the jitterbug.

I get it slowed down and off the freeway.  It's fine at low speeds, idles smooth as glass, but about 35-40 mph, or on any sort of incline (rare in Houston) it starts choking and lurching.

I've seen this before.  It's another one of those gotdamned coil-on-plug abortions Ford used instead of a proper distributor and central coil.  Now I just gotta find out which one (or more) of the 8 has burned out and get it replaced.  More $$$ gone.

Tuesday was also the day that one of my favorite bloggers pulled the plug.  After suffering the unwanted attentions of a creepy stalker-type, Tamara of View From The Porch went with the nuclear option and shitcanned her blog.

I don't like it, but what are ya gonna do?  If it ain't fun anymore, and you're not getting paid to do it, why continue?  Sure, we all like the free ice cream, but if the ice cream truck drives away, you learn to do without.

Got an ongoing problem at the office with a non-responsive co-worker that's jacking up my schedule.  Can't get a reply to either emails or phone calls, and I'm not sure I trust myself to show up at their site unannounced.  I don't think I could resist being a guided missile of snark and sarcasm.
I could give a damn if you like me or not.  Business is business, and hoping I'll just quit doing my job and go bother someone else is unprofessional at best, and extremely rude at worst.

Got a couple more topics I'd like to discuss, but I'll save those for later.  Y'all have a good weekend!

Thursday, September 04, 2014

Zillow Hell

I'm Gonna Live In A Van Down By The River...

If I could say just one thing to my younger self as I was on the eve of graduating college, I'd take a hot iron and brand "DON'T FUCK UP YOUR CREDIT RATING" on my chest in reverse letters so I'd see it in the mirror every morning...

What brought that on?  Looking for houses, and having very little luck.

I go to the Zillow website, and enter all my info, including how much house I can afford, and all the other particulars.

I get this map back.  The red dots are possible homes I could manage on my credit/budget.

Now, this map is the area of Houston (inside the big green box) that I consider liveable, in terms of commute time downtown, amenities, crime rate, and so on.

See a bit of a problem??