Friday, June 29, 2007

1980's Advertising At Its Best (Part 2)

How can we forget our tiny blue friends, The Smurfs!

I enjoyed watching The Smurfs growing up. The only thing you gotta watch out for when taking in The Smurfs is thier beating of a dialect which over uses the word "smurf" - as seen in this commercial. Noun, adjective, exclamation, you name it - they figured out a way to say it.

For example, the following line could be expected in any given episode: "Holy smurf, Papa Smurf! That's a smurfy-smurf-smurf idea! Smurf!"

Just beat me over my smurf head with a smurfin' brick!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

1980's Advertising At Its Best (Part 1)

Laugh now - but be honest, the first time you saw this commercial you thought it would be so cool to have a Simon, didn't you?

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Alli Need A Change Of Underwear

With this post I hereby declare myself a card-carrying member of The Colbert Nation . . .

Hopefully you saw the recent episode of The Colbert Report where Stephen highlighted the newly approved, over-the-counter, weight-loss pill Alli.

Alli is sure to be a useful pharmatherapeutic tool in the war against obesity, but as it is with most drugs, there are a few side affects to keep in mind. These following "treatment effects" can be found word-for-word on thier website:

  • "Gas with oily spotting"

  • "Looose stools"

  • "More frequent stools that may be hard to control"

  • " . . . it's probably a smart idea to wear dark pants and bring a change of clothes with you to work."

    This just proves why I feel it's so important to be selective of which outlets to get your news from. You would never get this kind of information on NPR, CNN or even (save perhaps a picture of an ugly mutt).

    All they care about is spreading propaganda about death, destruction and the general dislike Americans supposedly have with anyone else with differing political opinions.

    That's why I get all my news from Comedy Central's The Colbert Report - news that changes my life!

    But still second to the Good News of the Holy Gospel, of course!
  • Saturday, June 23, 2007

    Separated At Birth?

    Does anyone remember the movie Gremlins?

    Just had to share this lovely photo I found on

    Elwood (bottom picture) is a 2-year old Chinese Crested Chihuahua who recently won the Ugly Dog Contest at the Marin-Sonoma County Fair (in Alabama?).

    How would you like to wake up to this guy licking you in the face every morning?!?!

    Friday, June 22, 2007

    Tagged . . . First & Last

    My wife tagged me. So here it goes:

    First memory: My mom used to be an interior decorator and would take me along on her "house calls." One house had a bear skin rug on the floor . . . with bear head (and teeth) still attached! It's so unfortunate that one of my earliest memories as a 4-year old is of me being deathly afraid of a rug.

    Side note: This memory has transitioned into an adulthood post traumatic disorder as a general fear of all large teeth-bearing animals.

    First real kiss: JoAnn - 6th Grade. She had to ask me twice before I could muster up the courage. I remember thinking afterwards, "Man, I hope she doesn't ask me to do that again."

    First concert: Soul Lift at Six Flags - Jr. High. Another sad example of my overly sheltered and repressed childhood.

    First love: Blue Bell & Magic Shell. No, seriously!

    First crush: Lisa - 5th Grade. We even "went" together for a while until she broke up with me just after Valentine's Day - ouch!

    First thing you think in the morning: Please, Tate - just 10 more minutes!

    First book you remember loving: Escape From Warsaw by Ian Serrailler - 6th Grade. This book planted the seeds to my lifelong fascination with World War II. It's a true story about 3 kids who escape German occupation in Poland to reunite with their family in Switzerland.

    First pet: Bonkers - An appropriately named golden retriever mix that could have benefited from a daily dose of Ritalin.

    First question you'll ask in Heaven: "Can we watch the history of the world on TiVo?"

    First thing you think of when you hear the word 'vacation':

    (As the trailer says, "When you think vacation, think National Lampoon's Vacation")

    First best friend: Dirk - 2nd Grade. He had all the cool Transformers.

    Last time you dressed up: Excluding my suit and tie for work . . . I can't remember.

    Last thing you ate: Oven Baked Potato Wedges with Olive Oil, Rosemary and Garlic! Mmmmm! They make the house smell yummy!

    Last CD you bought: Thanks to iTunes I haven't bought a CD in quite a while - I only buy singles now. But the last full CD I bought off of iTunes was the soundtrack to Master & Commander: The Far Side of the World. Great movie. Even better soundtrack.

    Last (good) book you read: I'll insert the word "good" and go with Lee Strobel's Case for Faith

    Last time you cried: When I held Tate for the first time.

    Last time you told someone you loved them: A few minutes ago when Kelly and Tate left to run errands.

    Last really funny thing you did: I'll change this to the last funny thing my dad did: For Father's Day last weekend we went to my parents' and grilled hamburgers. After a few bites of his burger my dad said, "Is there something wrong with this cheese?" That's when he realized that he was trying to eat his cheeseburger with the plastic wrapper still on the cheese!

    Last thing you watched on TV: Comedy Central's The Colbert Report. Kinda sad how this is how I get all my news now!

    Last Halloween costume: I can't remember my last costume so I'll tell you about my favorite costume. Batman - Age 4'ish. My mom made it herself - including the cape and cowl! But don't think that just because it was homemade it was some dorky looking costume. My Mom is pretty impressive with a sewing machine. In fact, some people thought I was the real Batman!

    Last concert attended: Celine Dion in Vegas . . . but only to prove my everlasting love and devotion to my wife!

    I tag Tara because I can only imagine what her responses will be; Russ because he needs a break from his dissertation work; and Keri because despite recently learning 100 random things about her the blogosphere still wants more!

    Thursday, June 21, 2007

    Standing Ovation . . .

    . . . that's what Kelly deserves!

    I tried in my last post to garner sympathy from the blogosphere for being sick. I took the resounding silence of no comments as everyone basically saying, "Get over it!"

    Actually, the sympathy should go to Kelly as she has now had to do more than her fair share of diaper changes, bottles, and butt pats.

    And then there's Tate to tend to!

    I know in my weakened condition I probably haven't been very good telling Kelly how much I appreciate all that she does . . . and that she is great at doing it all.

    The worst thing about being home sick is that I can't greet my family in the morning with a hug and kiss - I need to keep my distance so that noone else will get sick. Which means I'll be sitting on the floor 5 feet away from Tate and have to yell upstairs to Kelly, "Babe, Tate has a dirty diaper!"

    Like a Super Mom though, she's more than happy to do what it takes to keep Tate happy and mend me back to good health!

    How lucky Tate and I are to have Kelly for our mommy!

    Wednesday, June 20, 2007

    Only Half-Sicko

    Thanks to flu-like symptoms, I'm wide awake in the middle of the night - umph!

    Having flu-like symptoms stinks because eventhough I feel bad (muscle aches, sore throat, and chills) I'm not all-out sick (no temperature) - which means that I'm sick enough to stay at home but not sick enough to get the full-service sympathy treatment from the wife . . . especially with a 6-month old in the house!

    Which leads me to admit that, when it comes to being sick, I'm probably more of a baby than Tate is. I know, that greatly deminishes your perception of me, doesn't it?

    I think it has to do with the way I was treated when I got sick while growing up - I'm not an "only child" but since both my brother and sister are so much older than me I basically grew up as the only child in the house. Which meant that I was able to demand (and get) everyone's sympathy when I got sick.

    I'm sure Kelly is pleased with that little aspect of my childhood!

    So having said that, feel free to feel sorry for me! You're more than welcome to send flowers - but truth be told, I'd much more appreciate a Cookies & Cream shake from Chick-Fil-A!

    WebMD says they're great for sore throats - at least that's what I'm telling Kelly!

    Monday, June 18, 2007

    QOTW: At Your Service

    Something occurred to me after I posted last week's QOTW . . .

    We trade our time for money (our job) and then turn around and trade our money for time - house cleaners, lawn service, personal shoppers, etc.

    I realize the massage/spa treatment doesn't really apply here, but it's an interesting comment on our society where an entire service industry exists for the purpose of doing for us what we would normally for ourselves . . . if we only had the time.

    Just thought I'd share that "Huh" moment . . .

    "If you had the money, which service would you pay to have every week?"

    Total votes: 18

    House Cleaners: 38% (7 votes)

    Lawn/Landscape Service: 11% (2 votes)

    Massage/Spa Treatment: 38% (7 votes)

    Personal Assistant/Shopper: 11% (2 votes)

    Sunday, June 17, 2007

    Three Roberts In A Row!

    Robert Alfred - Robert Wade - Robert Tate

    Happy (First) Father's Day!

    Friday, June 15, 2007

    QOTW: Workaholics Anonymous

    Here's last weeks' QOTW as promised . . .

    My first job in sales was at Pitney Bowes Office Systems - I sold copiers.

    Working for Pitney Bowes was great despite the minor detail that I wasn't very good at selling copiers. I typically fouled things up during the demo - which was when you brought in a copier that a potential customer was considering and demonstrated to them how incredibly easy it was to operate.

    The problem was that I was terrible at operating copiers. If it could be jammed, stuck, over-loaded, overheated, off-lined, side-lined or even error-ed, I somehow was able to show my customers-to-be how easy it was to do.

    Need 10 sets of collated, double-sided, hole-punched copies? You got me! However, I do know a good way of changing out the toner cartridge so that half of it ends up all over your brand new suit - that's easy!

    My demo's were usually abruptly ended by a polite, "Uh . . . thanks. We'll give you a call."

    (Thank goodness I'm much better at selling drugs!)

    But the cubicle world of Pitney Bowes brought out the "best" in the office personalities. My boss was the coffee addict. He'd start a new pot of coffee at 4:00 in the afternoon just because he was thirsty. What always puzzled me about him was that, despite practically having a constant caffeine drip from an IV, he reminded me of Droopy. With as much coffee-intake as he had you'd expect someone with a little more edge - never understood that one!

    His boss was the nicotine addict. It would be 103 degrees outside and he'd be standing in the parking lot in a wool suit puffing down a cigarette. I always hated seeing him smoking when I'd return to the office from a sales call because he would make me stand out there and tell him how things went.

    Thirty feet away was a comfortable 75 degree climate-controlled environment and all he wanted to do was "burn one" out in the blazing sun while reminding me of the advantages and disadvantages of analog copiers versus digital copiers . . . as if I really cared!

    I mention Pitney Bowes because this FedEx commercial reminds me of Pitney Bowes (The Office reminds me of Pitney Bowes, too - but that's another post!). When I found this clip on YouTube, it gave me the idea of last week's QOTW.

    It's no surprise that most of you think you're the only normal one at work. The real question is what would your co-workers say about you?


    "Which office employee are you?"

    Total Votes: 16

    "Blameless Bill" - 6% (1 vote)

    The Attitude - 6% (1 vote)

    The Whiner - 6% (1 vote)

    The Coffee Maker Cop 0% (0 votes)

    The Clock Watcher 18% (3 votes)

    Thumb-Twidler Extraodinaire 6% (1 vote)

    Mr. Over-promise/Under-deliver 6% (1 vote)

    The one normal person in the whole place 50% (8 votes)

    Tuesday, June 12, 2007

    The Day After

    Nothing worth mentioning happened today.

    What a great day it was!

    Monday, June 11, 2007

    My Great Day of Futility!

    I left the house this morning with a wonderful sense of purpose. I had my To-Do List (complete with contributions from my lovely wife) and a plan for how I was going to get it all done.

    Come to find out, I should have just stayed in bed and called in sick!

    2 miles from Eastland (100 miles west of Fort Worth) my perfect plan flew out the window!

    This is what you call a blowout!


    An 8-inch gash on the bottom, a 5-inch gash on the top and no earthly idea of how it happened! But, if I may say so myself, thanks to some pretty impressive driving skills I was able to contain the gashes to the tire and not the rest of my car!

    But no problem, right? Just throw on the spare, buy a new tire in Eastland and I'm probably only 2 hours behind schedule at the most!

    If only the jack that came with my car was able to raise my car high enough to put the spare on! Oh yeah! I jacked that thing up as high as it would go and I still needed another 3 inches before I could bolt on the spare!


    So, I spent another hour and a half on the side of I-20 dodging shoulder-hugging 18-wheelers and waiting for Roadside Assistance (our corporate AAA) to bring a bigger jack! So much for being only 2 hours behind.

    Nevertheless, around 1:30 I was rolling again and thinking that if I could get a new tire pretty quick in Eastland then I could probably still salvage part of the afternoon. Too bad the only tire store in town didn't have my size tire . . . "But we can have it here for you by tomorrow morning!"

    D'oh! D'oh! D'oh!

    The closest store that had the tire I needed was a Firestone in Brownwood about 45 minutes away. OK - I can do that! I'll drive to Brownwood - buy a new tire - see a couple docs and be on my way home! Too bad the Firestone had about 20 people ahead of me by the time I got there!

    D'oh! D'oh! D'oh! D'oooohhhhhh!

    Finally around 4:30 I headed home from Brownwood having not seen any doctors because I had to wait so long at Firestone. By the way, is there anything more pointless than reading a Car & Driver Buyer's Guide from 3 years ago?

    10 hours, 300 miles and no doctors after I left this morning, I finally pulled back into my driveway. Totally beaten. Totally exhausted. Totally ready for this day to be over and done with. I should have gone straight to the bed that I should have never gotten out of in the first place . . . but I didn't!

    I thought Macy and I could use some fresh air so I decided we'd go run some errands together. But between putting Macy in the backseat and walking around to my door I somehow locked my keys in the car . . . with Macy in the back seat!

    D'(Not very nice words spewing from my mouth!)oh!

    When will this day end?!?!?!

    Once I regained my composure, I called Roadside Assistance (again!) and about 45 minutes later some guy showed up and popped the lock on my car in about 20 seconds - literally! I could have sworn Macy shot me a glare as she jumped out of the back seat!

    Poor Macy - nobody remembered her birthday and then she was locked in the back seat of a car!

    I'm going to bed now but I'm going to be very careful. With my luck, I could be severely injured by my electric toothbrush and have to be taken to the Emergency Room by ambulance only to find out that the dentist on-call had a blowout on the way to the hospital!

    PS: Does it bother anyone that there's a guy out there who's really good at popping car locks in less than 20 seconds?

    (I'll do QOTW when I regain cognitive function!)

    Saturday, June 09, 2007

    Now I Know I'm A Daddy

    Cycling Rule #1: Don't wear headphones while cycling - it makes it hard to hear other cyclists, cars or large dogs giving chase.

    Since I don't listen to music while riding I'm reduced to singing songs in my head - which usually isn't too bad.

    Unfortunately for me, I couldn't get this song off auto-repeat during my ride today!

    By hey! At least it was the "U2" version!

    Thursday, June 07, 2007

    Tate-ism #9

    "This stuff actually tastes better after it comes back up."

    Tuesday, June 05, 2007

    I Feel The Need For Speed!

    In response to my recent speeding ticket(s), my Dad-In-Law sent me a great link:

    The first thing I have to comment on is how funny it is that rather than giving me some line of "Wade, you really should try to slow it down, Mmm-k?", he instead sends me a website that shows me where I can (and can't) get away with speeding!

    For Christmas this year, I think I'll ask him for a radar detector just to see if he actually gets me one!

    As for the website, genius! It's a map of over 21,000 known speed traps in the US! (Sorry, Russ, Canada doesn't seem to be included - I guess you guys don't have a problem with speeding!)

    No doubt police departments everywhere are furious that this super-confidential-double-secret information has been released into the public domain. Nonetheless, I have no choice but to assume that this is an all-inclusive listing of speed traps and will therefore drive accordingly!

    (Had I only known about this website when I rented that Mustang!)

    Thanks for the link, Dad-In-Law! Now I'll get to Brownwood even faster!

    Sunday, June 03, 2007

    QOTW: The Stuff Room

    I gleamed this week's question from a recent discussion I heard on the radio about how Americans are obsessed with size . . . particularly when it comes to the homestead!

    The guys on the radio mentioned that the most expensive house in the Dallas/Fort Worth area has around 20,000 square feet. And at the moment only 2 people live in it - although it requires a small company of people for upkeep!

    I'm sorry, but there is a point when a house becomes too big!

    But I started wondering, "If I could add a couple hundred square feet here or there to our current house (for practical purposes, of course!), where would I put it?"

    I think the enemy to any house and home is clutter. I hate clutter. I hate disarray. I hate stacks of stuff - although I am currently tolerating several boxes of sales material in my office because I have nowhere else to put them . . . I need more closet space!

    I have to hand it to our builder, they did a pretty good job on creating plenty of closet space. But can you ever have too much closet space? It's just amazing how all the stuff you accumulate over time seems to suddenly overflow and take over a room.

    And that's all it is - just stuff. Stuff we never will use - stuff we never have used. But all stuff that we think we will eventually use. So we keep it and stuff it in every nuck and crany in our house until finally there's no room for the stuff that we really do need to keep!

    I guess that's why there are so many storage units being built around here . . .

    "If you could add square footage to any ONE area in your house or apartment, which area would it be?"

    Total Votes: 25

    The Living Room: 12% (3 votes)

    The Dining Room: 4% (1 vote)

    The Kitchen: 12% (3 votes)

    The Master Bedroom: 8% (2 votes)

    The Bathroom: 20% (5 votes)

    The Closets: 36% (9 votes)

    The Pantry/Utility Room: 0% (0 votes)

    The Garage: 4% (1 vote)

    The Front/Back Yard: 4% (1 vote)

    Friday, June 01, 2007

    Say What?

    I recently had lunch with a doctor's office where we talked about gross food that nobody likes to eat - which got me wondering if the topic came up because they didn't like the lunch I brought in.

    (Black-Eyed Pea, by the way, happens to have great food - especially for take-out!)

    One nurse said, "The one thing that always makes me gag is 'vy-anna' sausages."

    [phonetic spelling mine]

    I sat there for a moment trying to figure out what in the world 'vy-anna' sausages were - and then it dawned on me. She's talking about vienna sausages! But who in the world pronounces them 'vy-anna' sausages? It's not like this nurse had a Texan accent or a southern drawl.

    Just as I was about to call her out on her misspeak, another nurse said, "Oh I know! I hate 'vy-anna's' too!"

    OK, wait! Are they really pronounced 'vy-anna' and not vienna (like the city in Austria) sausages? Am I the one who's been mispronouncing them all these years?

    Vy-anna or vienna - either way, they make me gag, too!