Sunday, January 22, 2012

Sunday Stealing: Never Ending Meme… Ends

Cheers to all of us thieves!

36. Have you watched American Horror Story?

I had to look that one up… No, I live alone and I like sleep.

37. Baseball hat or toque?

Hat… Currently a Seahawks hat celebrating their “championship” (cough) from last year.

38. Do you shampoo or soap up first in the shower?

Shampoo… let the moisturizers & conditioners do their jobs.363981b

39. Wet the toothbrush or brush dry with the toothpaste?


40. Pen or pencil?

Pen… Generally a BLUE gel ink pen. My current favorite is pictured.

41. Have you ever gambled at a casino?

I live in an Indian Casino Paradise, with WILDHORSE just down the freeway and SPIRIT MOUNTAIN in the area where I usually have to travel for work. I’ve won some, but lost more. Basically, I’m doing my best to fulfill the mission of the Indian Casino… to get back what was stolen from them (grin).

42. Have you thrown up on a plane?

No, but I’m going to Mexico in a couple weeks… I’ll let you know.

43. Have you thrown up in a car?


44. Have you thrown up at work?

Generally, like Jerry Seinfeld… I avoid vomiting if at all possible. It is the thing that has kept me from bulimia.

45. Do you scream on roller coasters?

I have been on ONE rollercoaster… I didn’t scream. I would have had to unclench in order to scream.

46. How many shoes do you have?

Not nearly as many as I want… a quick count says SIX pair, including slippers.

47. Who was your first roommate?

My first roommate was a friend I met in college and his girlfriend. The arrangement only lasted about three months, but it was a lot of fun.

48. What alcoholic beverage did you drink when you got drunk for the first time?

I think it was a combination of Coors Light and Matilda Bay wine coolers. Just thinking of those two beverages makes me gag a little.

49. What was your first job? 1964_Rambler_Classic_770[4]

DIshwasher at a buffet restaurant… it was NASTY. I never ate there again.

50. What was your first car?

A 1964 AMC Rambler Classic.

51. When did you go to your first funeral?

I went to my first viewing  when I was seven, but my first funeral was my Grandpa’s when I was 10.

52. How old were you when you first moved away from your hometown?

20 – when I left to attend Oregon State University –GO BEAVS--

53. Who was your first grade teacher?

Mrs. House. She was pregnant and left when the baby arrived, we’re not sure what happened to her after that.

54. Where did you go on your first airplane ride?

Flew from Seattle to Boise for my ex-wife’s grandmother’s funeral.

55. When you snuck out of your house for the first time, who was it with?

My childhood best friend, Kevin and I did this all the time. We had some fun times (at least that’s how I remember it).

56. Who was your first best friend and are you still friends with them?

Kevin was my first best friend, he lived across the field from my house. We had many good times together. He left after graduation and dropped out of all our lives. I guess he really did leave the hometown in his rearview mirror. 

57. Where did you live the first time you moved out of your parents’ house?

My friend Nick, his girlfriend and I moved into an apartment across town from where my parent’s lived.

58. Who is the first person you call when you have a bad day?

There are several people I can call… it depends on the type of bad day. SCAN0030

59. Whose wedding were you in the first time you were a bridesmaid or a groomsmen?

I served a Best Man (back row, on the left) in my best friends wedding 21 years ago. **I haven’t been asked to be a bridesmaid yet.

60. What is the first thing you do in the morning?

Tumble out of bed and stumble to the kitchen, pour myself a cup of ambition. Yawn and stretch and try to come to life.

61. What was the first concert you attended?

I remember seeing Buck Owens & Roy Clark at some fair when I was a kid.

62. First tattoo or piercing?

No piercings… but I have a 412 tattooed to my right forearm. When I was successfully losing weight from 2006-08, I was so certain I wasn’t going to go back to being a fat tub o’goo that I had the largest number I ever saw on the scale tattooed to my arm. Now that I’ve gained all the weight back and resumed my goo-ness, it’s an embarrassment every time someone asks about it.

63. First celebrity crush?

In a word… Ponch!


Saturday 9: Home

1. Do you live close to where you grew up? Why?

For years I couldn’t wait to see my hometown, Ontario, OR in my rearview mirror. Like many people I’ve encountered, we seem to feel that the old hometown is what kept our dreams from gaining wings. Then I went and married a woman from there and the reasons became a little more complicated; my former in-laws live there, and there is a boatload of them! One of my kids summed it up, “Dad, they don’t like you very much”.

2. Have you ever been so angry that you almost lost control?

Yes… I put a hammer through a computer monitor once.

3. Are you a fan of a musical act that slightly embarrasses you?


4. Is there a movie that always makes you cry?

Yes… The Family Stone

5. Who is the most famous person that you've met? Act_Bill_Walton

2004-06 I had a daily local affairs talk show on a local radio station. I had the opportunity to meet/interview a number of people who are famous in the State of Oregon, Sen. Gordon Smith, Rep. Greg Walden and Gov. Ted Kulongoski. But the person that may be more widely famous is NBA Hall of Famer, Bill Walton. He’s a big deal here in Oregon, mainly due to the part he played on the 1977 NBA Championship Portland Trailblazers! But he went on to play for the Celtics and to be a sports analyst on ABC & ESPN.

6. Before you leave your home, what must you have?


7. What do you miss the most about being a kid?

I miss the friend I had back then. Hanging out, making fun out of just about anything.

8. Tell us about a passion of yours that your readers would not expect.

I have a passion for finding a way to keep young people from going down the road I followed into adulthood. I was so scared of my sexuality, I thought the only way was to live a lie. In the end I damaged myself, the woman I married and my children.

9. At what age do you think you'd be to think, “I've had a great run”?

At the rate I’m going… 125.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Sunday Stealing: The Never Ending Meme (pt.2)

 21. Did you go to your high school prom?


22. Perfect time to wake up?

8 am

23. Perfect time to go to bed?

1 am

24. Do you use your queen right away in chess?


25. Ever been in a car accident?

Yes… the story is HERE. Sorry the pictures don’t show up anymore.

26. Closer to mom or dad…or neither?

Mom died in 1990… dad, no.

27. What age is this exciting life over for you?

I’ll let you know when I get there.

f_3491W_128. What decade during the 20th century would you have chosen to be a teenager?

I think I would have loved to be a hippy in the 60’s and 70’s.

29. Favorite shoes you have EVER owned?

I would love to have another pair of Ropers. The last pair I owned lost structural integrity after five years.

30. Do you have an article of clothing you have had since you were in high school?

I still have my Letterman’s Jacket.

31. Were you in track and field?

I was a chubby, nerdy kid in High School and I did what most chubby, nerdy kids do… I was the Track team “manager” and the AV geek for the football team. That is how I earned my Letter.

32. Were you ever in a school talent show?index_4


33. Have you ever written in a library book?


34. Allergic to?

Seasonal Allergies

35. Favorite fruit?

DJ… or a nice tree ripened peach… both are sweet and fuzzy.

Saturday 9: Losing You

1. Have you ever still been in a relationship that you knew was ending, but you hung in with it anyway? If yes, why?
This was true of both my marriage and my last gay relationship. Both of them had moments when any rational person would have known it was over… but not me. Why not? Because I don’t like change because change brings instability. I have learned many lessons from these two failed relationships and what to do to avoid going down that road again. Lessons which I’m having to consciously remind myself of as I am in the early stages of a new relationship. What are those lessons? Go HERE.
2. Tell why people around the world should be completely enthralled by you.
I’m told (by the someone mentioned in #1)… I’m cute, sweet, my hair looks good no matter what he tries to do with it, a good kisser, I smell good and I’m cuddly. There is more, but I’m not writing everything he said.cfiles19195
3. Other than where you live, what's your favorite city and why?
Portland – Culture, people, shops, bars, FUN!
4. What is something you are really passionate about?
I’m passionate about helping people, it is the common theme though my life. It is the reason I’m a Social Worker. Perhaps, it is the reason my relationships go on past their expiration date; I want to fix them.
5. What has been your most exciting prize that you've won?
I rarely win anything of substance.
We have a local department store here in the NW called BiMart. It’s a “membership” store ($5 for life) that you have to show your membership card for admission... its VERY exclusive. They have a thing called “Lucky Number Tuesday”. They post membership numbers, if yours match, you can win nice things like a digital camera or a piece of furniture. They also have the consolation prize if you number ends in FIVE or something you can get a bag of potato chips or a can of peanuts. It is that consolation prize I have won. WOW… I can feel your envy dripping on your keyboard.
6. Do you think there was there a second gunman behind the grassy knoll?
Who knows… but it’s entirely plausible. I’m sure my government does secret things that would be embarrassing.
7. What was the silliest, most fun, crazy or impractical gift that you received?
One year, for my birthday; I got a laptop dock so the laptop would have a normal keyboard. It was awkward and the process for linking up the laptop with the wireless keyboard was annoying. I’m not sure what happened to it. Maybe it made it to Goodwill?
8. What was the most practical gift that you received?
When the kids are here, it’s tradition to have pancakes or French Toast for breakfast on Sundays. My griddle burned out a few months back, so my kids got me a NICE one for Christmas. Here Dad, make us pancakes!
9. What blogger has been in your blogroll the longest? How did you discover them?
My buddy Rick has had a blog in its various incarnations since 2005 (ish), he’s is my blogfather; meaning, he is the one who got me into blogging. He has two blogs currently… his Professional blog and his Photography blog. 

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Challenge #14



Favorite Place to Eat

Fighting the battle of the bulge has been an ongoing battle in my  life. I was winning for a few years 2006-08, when I lost 140 lbs. But two things make it very hard to maintain success for very long.

  1. I’m what they call a “stress eater”. I turn to food when I’m seeking comfort for sadness or stress.
  2. I like to eat. I like to eat with friends. I like to cook for friends and family. I’m told, I’m pretty good at it too. If I lived the life of my dreams, I would be a foodie.

If you’ve been following this Challenge (see tab above), you will know that I cannot just give you one answer; I categorize these sort of things. I’ve been to some good restaurants in my travels. When I lived in Seattle I would use a guidebook (pre-internets) called The Best Places to Eat in Seattle. when we were set to go out, we would riffle through the book, randomly pointing a finger and then deciding if that was a place that suited our collective tastes and budget. Several places jump to my mind when I think of the best places we went; a Greek place on Fremont, a Chinese place in the International District, a pizza place in Wallingford. I could go on and on. In Spokane, a place called “The Onion”. In San Francisco an Italian place where we sat with the other patrons family-style. In Portland, The Roxy, the Byway CafĂ©, The Spaghetti Factory. In Boise, Flying Pie Pizza, Five Guys, Johnny Rockets. Hell, even in the old hometown… Burger West.

When thinking of all those places, you can probably guess the common denominator… FRIENDS. Just about any place is the “best place”… even McDonald’s or our own back yard… when you’re sharing a meal with friends.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Sunday Stealing: The Never Ending Meme (p.1)

Cheers to all of us thieves!
1. Song that always makes you sad?
When my girls were little this song made me sad because I didn’t want them to grow up. Now that they are juniors in high school, it makes me sad because it has all gone by way too quickly. I want so much to hold them in my lap as I read them a story and have them giggle at the voices I made. The last verse has me verklempt as I write this because I know it’s going to be here way too soon.
2. Last thing you bought? Groceries
3. Last person you argued with? I wouldn’t call it an argument, but my boss and I had a 'discussion’ about how to best get a certain client to move forward on her case plan.
4. Do you put butter before putting the peanut butter on? eww…no!
5. One of your stuffed animals’ names as a kid? Back in the day my Grandpa would take individual bags of Planters Peanuts in his lunchbox for an afternoon snack. One could save the empty bags and trade them for Planters merchandise. I had a Mr. Peanut cup and a stuffed Mr. Peanut. He had spindly legs that had to be sewn back on from time to time, but I loved him and remembered carrying him everywhere… he was called… Mr. Peenee!
6. Did you ever at one time own a Barenaked Ladies CD? At one time? I own two of their CD’s! And they sing the theme of my favorite show…
I love the intro by the “evil” Wil Wheaton.
7. Favorite day of the week? I tried to think of a witty response, but kept coming back to the logical… Saturday.
8. Favorite sundae topping? Melted Peanut Butter – A couple tablespoons in the microwave for 30 sec. poured over ice cream. It melts a bit… its decadent.
9. Did you take piano lessons? Nope
10. Most frequent song played? I’m guessing this is a follow up to Q:9, but according to my iTunes the most played song is Help – The Beatles.
11. T.V. show you secretly enjoy? Secretly? I watched ONE episode of that slice of fresh Kardashian hell… and I didn’t enjoy it. You know I do not like “celebrity’ news but… Chelsea Lately… Chuy makes me laugh.
12. Would you rather play basketball or hockey? ummmm…. if I were able to play either of those I would choose hockey.
13. Date someone older or younger? I haven’t had much luck with ‘older’ so I would like to try ‘younger’ and see how it goes.
14. One place you could travel right now? Since I do not currently have an automobile… right now I can go upstairs or to the bathroom.
15. Do you use umbrellas? No, here in the Northwest that is how we identify the tourists.
16. Do you know all the words to the Canadian national anthem? Damn! If I’m going to play hockey, I’m going to have to learn them.
17. Favorite cheese? You can’t go wrong with a nice piece of Cheddar.
18. The Smith’s or The Cure?
19. Do you prefer blondes or brunettes? hmmm… I don’t believe I have a preference.
20. Best job you ever had? That is such a hard question. There are parts of certain jobs I have enjoyed, but I cannot say I enjoyed the entire job.

Challenge #13

**Previous posts and motivation HERE**

Something you are looking forward to…

2011 was a personally brutal year; my first post-divorce relationship came to a sputtering death, I made a major financial decision that had some frustrating consequences, and people who came to me in “my time of need” were evil in an empathetic covering.

I’m taking full advantage of the fresh optimism that comes with the New Year… 2012 will be a year of better choices and subsequent successes.

  • The bankruptcy will be final and I hope to use better judgment when I’m considering new financial responsibilities.
  • I learned some things about what to do and not do in a relationship. I will think long and hard before I throw my lot into another man’s basket.
  • When someone comes offering the hand of friendship or help… make sure they isn’t a snake hidden up their sleeve.

Saturday 9: Nobody Told Me

1. When you grew up were you ever told how to deal with problems?

I don’t believe I was ever told how to deal with problems, but I was certainly shown. I was shown that the best way to deal with problems was to fret about them until there was little to be done about the issue and then bemoan the consequences. Even though I do endeavor to deal with my problems in an adult fashion, I find myself falling into their way of life… thanks dad!

2. What was your first apartment like?

It was pretty basic; 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom… it was upstairs from a family with a bitchy mother. They complained anytime we had friends over and even called the cops on us a few times.

3. What was the first car you owned?

A 1964 AMC Rambler Classic


This is not a picture of my actual car, but this is what it looked like; sans custom wheels. I have this pipe dream that someday I will find this car and restore it to jaw-dropping glory.

4. Tell us about a crush or relationship that you had at high school.

As is the case with many a closeted rural high school student, I had some serious crushes on certain members of the football team. I did have a girlfriend during my senior year. I was so socially clueless that I didn’t know how to have a relationship (with either sex).

5. Have you ever had an “enemy” in your life?

As it turns out, my biggest enemy is me. I’ve learned that the people I obsess over most likely don’t think of me as much as I think of them.

6. What were you doing the first night that you got drunk?

Drinking… duh!

7. Ten years ago, what was you job and did you like it?

2002 – I started the year working for a Community Mental Health agency doing Community Support for clients in the… community. I liked it a lot. It was cut due to the post-9/11 recession. I went back into the radio business, but kept my eye on social work jobs. In 2006, I went back to work for the same Mental Health agency.

8. What movie had the biggest impact on you as a child and why?

The Last Starfighter – Granted, it came out when I was a Freshman in high school; but I really identified with that movie. A guy, stuck in a small community thinking he was never going to escape until Robert Preston shows up one night and not only gets him out of the small community, but makes his life mean something.

9. What are your plans for this weekend?

Relaxing and recharging after a hectic week at work. I’ve got a free weekend of Showtime on the cable; so I’ve got several movies checked for a reminder.