Monthly Archives: September 2008

This is what I get for waiting

Over at day job, I heard from a colleague that Washington Mutual, which had just been picked up fire sale-style by JP Morgan Chase, had done little more than slap a new logo over an old one. And, they did. The effort is truly low-rent, but I guess it gets the point across.

They took the picture off the website today, which is a fucking shame. Yesterday, the new JPMC message was pasted on top of a picture in which one kid was covering the other’s eyes.

Yeah, see no evil …

Pomodoro really is amazing

I’m writing, and I have Seinfeld on in the background. A throwaway line caught my attention. George thinks his girlfriend wants to break up with him. So, he blew off lunch with her … at Pomodoro, because everyone breaks up there. I live right upstairs from Pomodoro, and I eat there all the time. I love the place. They are very good to me. Further, I eat there with my wife all the time. We are still married.

I whole-heartedly endorse Pomodoro. If you haven’t been there, go. Tell Peter or Annalee that Tom from Next Door sent you.

PS– They got the exterior right, but the inside is completely different.

I just want some fucking Expo whiteboard cleaner

I can’t think right now. I can’t focus. I can’t string a fucking sentence together. And it’s driving me up a goddamned wall. This happens to me a few times a year, and when it does, it is brutal. So, here I am, with plenty to write and lacking the sense to be able to do so. I’ve tried all my tricks today, and nothing has worked. Nothing at all. I feel like a mental patient.

So, realizing that productivity wasn’t going to happen today, I wandered the floor of day job looking for expo cleaner. My plan was pretty simple. If I can’t write, I’ll plan. I have several editorial calendars that I manage, and writer’s block (how I hate those words) would force me to think ahead rather than just crank out copy. Since the conference room is taken, I figured I’d just hijack my boss’s office (he’s not in there) and use his whiteboard. Unfortunately, his whiteboard is a fucking mess, as he does not clean it. He probably doesn’t clean it because it’s my handwriting all over the board, and he suspects I’ll blow a gasket when he erases something I need. So, that’s my own damned fault, too.

Anyway, I need to clean this whiteboard. The problem is that NOBODY IN MY FUCKING COMPANY HAS ANY EXPO WHITEBOARD CLEANER. I mean, why the fuck would we need it? We only have several whiteboards per department. We have floor-to-ceiling, wall-to-wall whiteboards in every fucking conference room. Why in the fuck would be bother to keep the very shit on hand needed to clean them?

Expo cleaner is pretty common. I went to Google to do a search on this product– just curious. As you can see below, the product is common enough that Google prompts you with several variations on this theme. There are many ways to find and acquire Expo whiteboard cleaning products.

A Google search on “expo white board cleaner” yields more than 3,000 results. The world has embraced this product, yet I can’t find any. The absence of it has rendered me completely unproductive. I mean, fuck, I have several bottles of this shit AT HOME.

It seriously should not be this fucking hard. Don’t wind up like me. Go buy some Expo whiteboard cleaner right now >>

The Government Controls the Weather

When I was at the cigar shop on Sunday, I tried to ignore everyone. I had a lot of writing to do, so there wasn’t much time to fuck around. But, when this happens, someone usually says something so stupid that I have to respond. I tend to regret it.

Sunday, the conversation turned to the situation in Houston, specifically what rednecks were saying in television interviews. For some reason, I piped up with my father’s line, “You know, Bush does have his hurricane machine. He controls the weather.”

Big mistake.

One smoker, who is something of a B-list celebrity, looked at me as a kindred spirit and said, “You know about that, too?”

Oh, fuck.

He went on to explain that the government has had a weather-controlling contraption since the 1930s and sugggested that I look into HAARP. No, I will not provide a link. I did a quick Google search while sitting in the shop and found a website. I began to read it to the crowd. I was not able to keep a straight face … the material was pure idiocy.

Meanwhile, my newfound comrade-in-arms nodded approvingly. when I finished, he said, “See, I’m not into conspiracy theories. This is real.”

I concurred, “It’s on the internet. It must be true.”


Why does this shit happen to me?

An update on my intense editorial effort

Okay, I have been writing all fucking weekend. Of the 18 software reviews I was assigned on Friday, I have knocked out 12 so far, and the 13th is in progress. So, I am moving along, even though I am plagued by the thought that this is nowhere near my best work.

The first 10 were brutal. They invovled a topic I had never covered before, and available information was thin. So, it was an absolute battle. Oh, and those are due tomorrow; I had some real pressure on me with them. The other eight (two of which are out of the way), don’t have to be turned in until Thursday. But, the way my weeks have been, I really should nail them down today, or I could wind up in an uncomfortable spot in a few days.

Writing these articles hasn’t been fun, but I am looking forward to the feeling of relief and accomplishment when this death march is behind me. That feeling can’t be manufactured. It only comes from taking on a huge task and putting it to bed through nothing but intellect and determination. I just can’t wait for that sensation to arrive. Earning it is a real bitch.

Why do people talk to me?

I don’t think I look terribly approachable. In fact, I’ve always thought that I give off a “fuck off” vibe. Well, this apparently is not the case. Some lady saw me having a cigar while writing on a bench on Central Park West. Some other people were indulging on another bench nearby. “So, I guess this is the smoking section,” she greeted us. I shot her a “fuck off” look and left it at that.

I wouldn’t be an asshole if others didn’t invite it.

Chilly in my apartment

I am so fucking happy that it’s getting cooler out. I hate hot weather and love fall. The walk into the office today is going to be amazing. I hope this holds out, because I’m ready to trade in shorts for jeans.

I have a window by my computer, and the breeze is just blowing right in. Fuckin’ fantastic. Coffee even tastes better when the weather gets like this. I know, it sounds strange, but it’s absolutely true. Well, it’s true for Starbucks Yukon blend made in a French press (excuse me … “Freedom” press).

Oh, just a heads up for those who like the Yukon blend– Starbucks is getting rid of it. They say it’s being replaced with something similar but not as acidic, but I say don’t mess with perfection.

This picture (thanks, Brian) was taken outside my old apartment, up on W 85th St. That neighborhood was better for bars, my current ‘hood is better for restaurants. But, I still want to march my ass up to Prohibition, soon. It’s an awesome bar, with great people, hot “talent” and excellent drinks.

Migrant Blogger: The WordPress Ninja

So, I have finally figured out how to schedule publication in WordPress. I am writing this on Sunday night, and I’m shooting to have it up on the 19th– Friday. I’ve scheduled a number of articles to go live throughout the week. When you see this, just know that I’ve taken my blogging skills to the next level.

I think I passed some kind of threshold on TripAdvisor

My usual picture in the mirror

My usual picture in the mirror

For previous reviews on TripAdvisor, I would post and have to wait for a few days until it went live. It bugged the shit out of me, because I like instant gratification. Today, I posted a review of the Holiday Inn Waterbury— where I had to stay when I was stuck going to Waterbury, CT for the weekend– and it was posted immediately. No waiting. And, the site published my three photos, as well.

So, I think I’ve passed some sort of milestone with TripAdvisor. I guess there’s a trial period before they let you post directly to the site. I’m pretty psyched that I’ve been “promoted.”