Friday, May 28, 2010
After 6 months of unemployment, I finally have an offer. While it is not a great salary, and I’m taking a 25% hit, it’s a great job with a great firm that has a solid reputation. I’ll be their Markets Specialist – Kind of an odd name for the firm’s marketing director. I’ll be working out the LA office and doing pretty much what I’ve done in the past, Proposals, PR, and New Business Development. I’ll be working in concert with Headquarters in Seattle, so I may be traveling some. The bulk of their work is in China, so this may be interesting.
One of the odd perks and reason I decided to accept the offer (like I had a choice) was the fact that their PTO policy is structured so that they look at the time you’ve worked since you were 22. Therefore, I qualify for 4 weeks a year. Plus, I can bank & roll over half of that a year.
I’ll probably have to resurrect my freelance business again in order to repair the damage this unemployment has caused my savings account, but I look at this as way to augment my vacation fund as well.
Thursday, May 20, 2010
You know I have too much fuckin free time when I do this shit -
I offer you an easy way to get folks to remember your phone number - mnemonics!
(sounds like a religion for Kirstie Allie and Tom Cruise)
I found a site and put in my phone number - Out popped:
(I've elected to not post my area code)
And consider my soon-to-be-ex, I thought this was amusing:
Give it a go!
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
I don’t like the elderly. There, I said it. I don’t like the way they drive. I hate that they use carts in stores for 2 items. I hate walkers & canes. These folks block traffic on the streets and in the aisles of stores. Their slow, confused, and occasionally smelly.
Yeah, yeah - I know. It's not cool to complain about the elderly. But I'm going to Hell anyway, so screw it.
I just have a real problem trying to run out for a quick errand and being delayed by Ernie and Maude as forget which way they were traveling as they approach an intersection, or having to dodge Aunt Pearl in her enormous Oldsmobile as she attempts to park across three time zones.
The other day at the Gym I went in a bit later than usual. I forgot its Silver Sneaker time/day. I swear - it looked like Dawn of the Dead - All these old folks shuffling in, from the parking lot, the side walk, the street. Not one of them can figure out how to open the fucking door. Rather scary. . .
And don't get me started on going to the doctor's office. I have to see a cardiologist and some days it looks like God's waiting room. You can see the pity on their faces as they see me. I can see "he's too young to be here" in their eyes. (when in fact, some of these old broads may want to hook up with a nice young man like me with good insurance). I have to get that vision burned off my eyes.
Saturday, May 15, 2010
Seem's ex-"better half" broke her wrist last night leaving a bar with her PIC (partner-in-crime) its pretty nasty and likely to require surgery. She called wanting pain pills and for someone to drive her car to her apt., also for the kids to rotate shifts helping her for the next day or so. (this is the second time in 6 months we've needed to retrieve a car at a Bar, first time for a "medical" reason).
When I had my open heart surgery & she left to go back and left me with #1 son (the alcoholic) as my attendant. I called her to inform her that #1 bought a case (24 cans) of beer and was intending on drinking them before we leave at 4 PM the next day. She said for me to have one with him. (I was 4 days post op).
I'm leaving it up to the kids to work out their shifts and I'm in no hurry to deliver pain relief . . .
In the big picture, Its part of my retirement plan. For now, My sis-in-law is getting married (3rd time - This makes for bro-in-law #14) and this prompted me to finally get ‘er done. I figure my weekends can be fun, full of food and drink & happy people. Despondent drunken bridesmaids are always a plus.
Retirement-wise, It was either marry folks or rob a bank - If I get away, I'm rich!, if I get caught - 3 square meals a day, just have to worry 'bout Bubba.
BTW - I won't do a Bris
BTW2 – Did you know my ordination allows me to absolve you of sin? Pretty cool perk !
Saturday, May 8, 2010
My mom passed away a few years ago & it took me forever to get her grave marker done. Part of me was waiting for my dad to pass, part of me didn't want to deal with the final chapter of her life. Tomorrow, I get to visit and see the new stone. Its going to be an emotional day for me. She died quite fittingly the day after Mother's day. As a tribute to her I'm publishing her eulogy. Happy Mother's day.
First I want to thank you all for coming today. Mom didn't like funeral - I know that because she has lost many close friends and did not attend their services. I stand before you and apologize on her behalf. I don't why she never went. I guess on those days she could not do anything to make you happy, and as we all know, she lived to make others happy.
I'd like to share my memories of mom & how her life affected me, affected us all. Because I think a life should affect others. She may not have thought she did a lot, but in her own quiet way she did.
Born in 1920, the second of two children to Belle and Joseph Weisbart. It was in her early life that her father left, preferring booze to babies. Soon after, Belle, unable to afford the children, was forced to place them in an orphanage. I think it was for 2-3 years that they only saw their mother on holidays, if at all. Belle eventually got a job and an apartment so she was reunited with her children. My bubbe lived with us until she died in 1967. I don't think she would admit it, but I believe that my mom never wanted to be separated from her again. I'd like to think that now, they are back together again.
In my eulogy. there are 4 key areas that comes to mind when I think of her. They are Food, Humor, Wisdom & People
I don't think there is a person here that wasn't invited to join us at her dining room table. It was build for 8, but often sat 20! Mom loved to cook & it was not unusual for her to spend days preparing food. When not actually preparing food, she would be sitting in her studio, making roses & watching those early day-time cooking shows like Julia Child or Graham Kerr all the while never taking a note. Later she'd try to recreate the recipes, occasionally with some sad results. If she couldn't dazzle you with taste, she'd go for the garnish. Thanks to her, I was the only kid at 8 that could make a radish rose.
As the youngest kid. it was I who got to observe her as she whipped up tuna salad in a scalloped tomato for Earlene, our cleaning lady. She'd be constantly describing what she is doing as if there was a TV crew in the kitchen, Earlene and I could care less how to properly seed a tomato. I'm not sure why, but she did talk all the time as she cooked. To this day, as I cook, I can hear her warn me “never to add hot liquids to cold eggs, or using seltzer water is the secret to making fluffy matzo balls”.
When I was little, I used to see her rushing around as guests were arriving and my Dad would be worried about her being barefoot! (this, from a man who's feet have never see the light of day) She'd turn to me and say that being barefoot puts her company at ease, its not so formal and allows them to relax more. Truth be told, her feet and ankles would swell from standing and cooking for the last 24 hours straight. She just couldn't get them to fit in the shoes she bought the previous week! I cook barefoot all the time now & often entertain that way. I' d like to think I'm giving my guests a more relaxed, informal meal. Radish roses & all!
I may not share any DNA with her but she taught me two important things in life. How to cook & see the humor in things.
Mom loved to laugh. April fools day in our house was taken very, very seriously. I'm sure My sister Jody remembers the pancakes that couldn't be cut as there was a neat circle of flannel baked into each one. I, on the other hand, was suspicious from beginning by the shear fact there was a hot meal in the morning! She's even pulled a few pranks on the neighbors as well. Again, I apologize if her antic got out of hand. I'm sure Phyllis can remember back in the old neighborhood, the magical orange tree that somehow grew baseball sized oranges overnight, It was upon Phyllis' close inspection that she saw the words SUN-KIST stamped on each one. I like to tell people the story about the scar on my eyebrow & how she reacted when that accident happened. She was in her bathroom shaving off her eyebrows and painting them on (that was, apparently, the thing to do in 1960). anyway, She had like 4 or 5 painted on when Jody brought it to her attention that I had fallen and was bleeding, a lot. With Phyllis, not home to drive her, She picked me up & ran several blocks to the doctor’s office. They weren't sure what to make of this frantic lady with multiple eyebrows and the bloody kid. Age did no slow her down in the humor department. Later in La Mirada, she and Sherry would get dressed up on the weekends, only to crash wedding receptions at Los Coyote Country Club.
As I became an adult, she never offered any advise or voiced her opinion. Perhaps she didn't think it mattered, but I would seek it just the same. In the 25 years of our marriage my mom has never once "butted in". She kept her opinions and thoughts regarding my marriage, kids, jobs, heck, anything, to herself. Not even a facial clue to tip us off! I tried to adopt that philosophy with my kids as they reach adulthood, and its not easy!
She loved socializing with others and made friends easier than most. Even in the nursing home and without a voice, she could be found introducing new patients to each other. She loved playing bingo as all the others would eventually nod off & she'd always win. To all of you who visited her, I do appreciate it. I know in the last year or two communication was very difficult and it was hard to see her once bright light go dim, but your visits truly brightened her day. Thank you.
Erma Bombeck once said about death: "When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and could proudly say, "I used everything you gave me."
I'd like to think my mom used all her talents as well.Thank you all for being such a special part of her life.
Monday, May 3, 2010
Imagine my surprise when I see #2 about 3 rows behind Mr. D. (just a little to his left).
I did what any parent would do - I recorded it.
Saturday, May 1, 2010
I did a cable cooking show (5 minute meals with Marc - Eat your heart out Rachel Ray) about 25 years ago and it was rough then. It hasn't improved a lot since. Back then I just came up with the meal, brought all the stuff, made it and smiled. Someone else was in charge of credits, sound, lighting, music & such.
#3 son was suppose to help & did a lot of the camera work. but when it came to editing and stuff (where he shines) - he lost interest. Not sure why or what happened - I swear I was not a diva! Suffice to say I needed to learn very quickly how to edit, add sound. fades, titles, etc. Not an easy task for an old fogey such as yours truly. And to add insult to injury, I had a host of issues that popped up whilst #3 was in school that I had to deal with. Like the fact that all my raw footage looked like crapped (software issue). Then, when they were converted (over 65 files), these 65 files lost sound, think silent movie. All the witty repartee & Bon Mots disappeared faster than donuts at Kirstie Alley's house! So I had to think fast - How can I fix it? I did what any sane director/producer/writer does, I used plan B.
Plan B was a campy voice over of the whole thing. I basically made fun of myself. Think of Mystery Science Theatre 3000 meets Yard Crashers. It came out OK but I had to edit out an awful lot & it still was around 4 minutes (the amount of time casting can actually view it and not be board). While I wish I could have done more, I had a deadline & a pot roast to baste.