be thankful friday chex mix

It’s been kind of a scary week.

After our group luncheon on Tuesday to meet the new boss really nothing anyone really gleaned from it. No one really knows if we’re staying in the same locations, doing the same duties or if it will get shaken up. Larry and Sherry The Wonder Twins may finally get separated and Sherry’s been worried. Sherry’s worried because she’s never been the engineer she’s been hired to BE. She just got on because Larry told Baxter (our old boss) that he wasn’t coming (in more ways than one) without Sherry. Now with the new boss Sherry might actually have to do some work. Patricia took the most recent package to leave so she will be gone at the end of this month. I think she saw the writing on the wall and decided to go back to truck driving with her husband.

The other day Shampa and I were instant messaging and (me liking to stir up shit out there) said that according to Sherry she thought everyone was moving back over to the old construction office where Larry and her sat. I knew this would stir up that office because they all sit OTP and would hate driving to inside the fruit loop. But, she apparently turned around and called another person on the team who in turn called Sherry and guess who’s company phone went off around 4:30 yesterday – mine, from Sherry. Sherry wondered why I was telling everyone that she said we were moving back there.

I asked, well didn’t you tell Dan this morning? Dan’s been talking about it all day.

Dan and I share an office and he often drives me crazy.

Just know that anything you tell Dan goes into concrete as fact.

I wanted to say, You’re the stupid bitch that started the rumor by telling Dan. It’s not my fault he took it as fact.

Afterwards, I texted Shampa that I took it that she told Sherry about our conversation. (BITCH) That’s the last time I tell her anything.

Meanwhile, I’m not so sure that the involuntary force reduction they got recently won’t turn into a voluntary reduction soon. Especially, getting a new boss in the mix. I saw dark clouds on the horizon so I started looking again. Well, I had been applying to some things since May. The other day I had a telephone interview with a large company similar (but different) than the one I’m with. I thought the interview was a disaster because the guy had me on speaker phone and I could barely hear anything he said. It took all my concentration just to hear what he was saying. At one point I made him repeat a question and even said, I’m having a hard time hearing you because you have me on speaker phone I’m getting an echoing effect.

Instead of saying, Oh I’ll take you off speaker phone, he said, Sorry and repeated the question. Not what I wanted, dude.

After hanging up I thought, Well, I bombed that one. Until last night I got an email from the recruiter saying Chris (was that his name? wow good thing I didn’t call him Dick which is what I thought he said his name was) really enjoyed your conversation concerning the position and would like to invite you to meet the team for on site interviews (wait for it) all day. Please send me your availability for all-day blocks starting from July 27……

All I could see was ALL DAY. I’ve never had an interview last ALL DAY. Oh my God. What could we possibly talk about ALL DAY? I’m kind of trying not to freak out about it. I’ve already dragged my suit out of the closet (I think it’s been almost a year since I’ve been on an interview) and made sure it fit. I’m going to work on a portfolio package to bring with me.  I guess all I can do is put it in my mind that I will nail it either way. (I have a lot of meditation to do between now and then).

I’ve saved the worst for last because this stuff sounds trivial compared to what my friend it going through. I have this friend I worked with at the Department of  trying to build roads but only threw people under the bus Transportation. Her brother has been kidnapped and we don’t know what to think. It’s been in the news and then they found a body in a lake nearby but they can’t identify it yet so they don’t know if it’s him or not. It’s been an ongoing nightmare for my friend and we feel so terrible for her and her family and all we can really do at this point is pray for them.

All that really puts things into perspective and it’s also really scary. We go about our day-to-day business not knowing what can happen next. Anything can happen at any time so it’s important to thank our lucky stars that we have a job to go to, people at work to bitch about and ALL DAY interviews. So, happy Friday, hug your person and tell them you love them and have a great, safe weekend!

Cheers!

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World Cup, School, Work, Keep It

It’s just a mish-mash of things to cover. I’ll start off with the FIFA World Cup. I’ve been addicted to soccer since the 2010 World Cup. At the time, I was not working a regular job and was keeping my own work hours with my landscape company (which, Charlie now runs full time). I had just completed a job and went to cool off at a local bar when they had it on. The crowd in the bar was there just to watch the game and drink beer. It was hard not getting swept away in the excitement of the crowd. I can’t remember the first game I saw but I remember after that first one I was hooked. The US was in it to round 16 and then got beat by Ghana.

During this time I started editing my work schedule around the games. I was doing practically any kind of landscape work I could get my hands on then and remember I had a couple of installation jobs. I would get up so early in the morning and go out and try to get my jobs finished before a particular game came on early that afternoon. Then, after that game I would go back to work. I did this all through the Quarterfinals, Semifinals and so on.

This past week I turned on the TV and watched as many games as I could. Saturday afternoon, Stiletto came over to watch the Denmark win. Sunday, Charlie made us waffles for the a.m. game and by the afternoon B Ferris came over to watch the 2:00 game and eat nachos.

I don’t think I’m going to keep up this schedule but I do have plans to catch games on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Taping games is not for me.

In the meantime, I’ve been trying to get as much schoolwork done as possible so I can have time to watch these games on the weekend. I have one more lab to do for my online class and 3 more to do for my live class. Both of my classes this summer are pretty lame. One is an entry level networking class and the other is an entry level security class which, I loathe the virtual labs we have to complete for it.  The networking class the professor lectures for 2-1/2 – 3 hours and then gives us 30 minutes to complete a lab – which, is ridiculous because it takes at least an hour to complete. We all have gotten smart and started completing them before the class or during his lecture and then turning them in and leaving when it comes time for him to shut up. About three weeks in he decided he’d give us more time to complete the labs in class and started ending lecture earlier but by then we were all used to turning in the shit and leaving. I mean, I don’t want to sit there until 9:30 pm if I don’t have to.

Last night, I went to campus to listen to a lecture from a white hat hacking security firm. It was really interesting if not a little above my head. Basically, companies hire this company to try and hack into their systems to show them what the vulnerabilities are. The starting slide the presenter said, You have to think like a criminal.

I could get into this.

This would be the type of company that would be fun to work for, I think. You get paid to hack into other peoples systems – heck yeah! Just…..I have to learn to hack first.

At the end I went up to introduce myself and ask a few offline questions. There were people in the class I could tell who were just asking questions during the lecture to make themselves look good. Showboaters. In every class. We were asked to bring our resumes why there were so many people packed into that room. I left mine but I really doubt if I hear anything. I don’t have the certifications behind me unless they were looking for a certified PM. Although, they said they weren’t necessarily looking for certifications as qualified people. Whatever that means, it was interesting all the same.

Last week we no more had a merger with another company when they started in on the workforce reduction business. I’ve been through three of these things and I’ve only been here a little over two years. While this reduction is offering really good early retirement options and most of the 10% reduction they are looking for they will get because there were a lot of people in the last one that wanted to retire but didn’t get the option because it got capped at the 10% they needed. This one has no cap so they may lose more people than they intended. The bottom line for someone like me is that I will probably be asked to fill in at another group that lost retirees. This could go either way for me – it could be good because I’d work for a manager who would actually notice appreciate me or I’ll get another white male good ol’ boy one that is more or less the same where on top of that I’ll have a ridiculous commute.

There’s also the chance I could be promoted to another position that’s open that they need to fill. So, the future is unknown. All I know is that I am open to shopping around. Soon as this semester is over I’m hitting the Network + study guide and plan on cramming for that exam for the three weeks in between semesters and having that certification by September.

My co-worker, Chris, is just starting security school and just sat for the CCENT certification exam. He promised me the book he used to study from and when I came in this morning it was sitting on my desk. It’s about three inches thick, too. I flipped through it saying, Fuuuuuuuuuck.

This shit is hard, y’all. But, easy don’t pay 90kaaaaay. (I feel a rap song coming on……)

I’ve been listening to this podcast called “Keep It”. It’s premise is pop culture and politics focusing on female, LGBT and African American rights. I think two of the hosts are gay and the third is an African American woman, Kara Brown – who I think is a hoot. I take the podcast with a grain of salt. Some of the things they discuss I have no idea what they are talking about because I have no interest in the Oscars and theater so sometimes I have to go look up shit they are discussing. Other times they get on a Trump rant and I have to turn it off because life it just too short to listen to Trump rants constantly. Seriously, I agree with the rants but I don’t want to constantly be hearing it. With that said, I enjoy the end of the casts when they each get to state something to Keep It – meaning, something they are each are really over with that week.

So, here’s my Keep It list for the week:

  • While I really LOVE that the world cup is on I really loathe the fact that it’s hosted in a country that locks up, persecutes and even kills gays. (If you don’t believe me go here). I really hate that a county that does that is getting the boost in economy from hosting.
  • A few posts back I mentioned that every time we have a get together with a certain group of people that this one particular person is always rude to someone. We are done with this person, we are done even trying to have a relationship with them. We’re done talking about it. We’re done, done, done.

And, that is all for my Keep Its for the week. Have a great one and if I don’t talk to you before the weekend have a great one. Cheers!

 

 

 

 

 

gone are the days

Why is it when I have a hangover  I’m awake at an ungodly hour? Everyone else is sleeping away their hangovers except me and the cat. The cat is bitching at me right now to be fed. I’m ignoring him. He can wait. I have important shit to write.

Last night, we all met up at the pub for Martha’s birthday. It was a surprise party that Dino had arranged. She called earlier in the week and ordered us to be there and asked if I would make sure Link knew about it. I was like, I’ll tell her but she can call or text that she’s coming herself. I’m not planning shit these days because between my two classes I don’t have time for anything but working on the assignments and trying to understand what the f*ck it is that I should be learning.

Of course, Mike and Celia were there. I had given myself a talk about not letting Mike get under my skin prior to getting there. Plus, Charlie’s ex gf was there because she’s met Martha all of two times and thinks they’re bosom buds. We knew J-mac was going to be there and just said, Oh well. I invited B Ferris because I knew that Martha would want her there and vice versa. Link had ridden over with us and Stiletto had shown up later to buffer join the party. Both Rooster and Shutter came as well.

So, when we walked up of course Celia was outside smoking with her and Mikes live-in Sarah (who is very strange) I really didn’t want to hug them because I didn’t want cigarette smoke on me but I did.  We went in and sat down – fortunately, there were a lot of seats to choose from so we ended up sitting at the opposite end of the table than J-mac. Mike just happened to be sitting in the middle and by the time Martha came in she took a seat at the end of the table as the head since it was her birthday leaving one chair beside Mike and a chair at the other end of the table next to me open. We were all sitting there talking and waiting for B Ferris and Christie to come before ordering food.

Dino came over to say that she was glad that I invited B Ferris as she said it wasn’t on her radar. It’s been almost a year to date since the whole nudity situation from Martha’s last birthday. I’m still not over it entirely. I still think, If you ever touch my wife again there WILL be consequences. 

Just then, B Ferris walks in and plops down in the chair beside me after hugging Charlie and I. That’s when Mike lost her shit.

YOU CAN’T SIT THERE BECAUSE CHRISTIE IS STILL COMING AND SHE’S VERY FAT AND WONT BE ABLE TO SIT IN BETWEEN ME AND [SHUTTER] HERE.

Every time Mike speaks its like a shout. Not sure if she needs to be fitted for hearing aids or what. And, how disrespectful to Christie talking about her weight like that at a full table of people. I’m sure if Christie would have known that she would have been mortified.

B Ferris just looked at her and went to get up and said, I don’t think so I want to sit here.

YOU CAN’T SIT THERE THAT’S CHRISTIE’S SEAT! YOU NEED TO COME SIT OVER HERE NOW.

I was getting pissed. I put my hand on B Ferris who was looking like she wanted to burst into tears and said, It’s ok stay here. 

B Ferris had just lost a beloved cat and was having a rough time so I’m sure Mike’s outburst caused even more distress. I was about to shout at Mike to cut her some slack she’d just lost a cat but I was afraid that would push Ferris over the brink and she’d leave and I wanted her to stay. Rooster and Shutter also chimed in that they could make room when Christie gets there no worries.

Mike then pointed at B Ferris and said, I’M NOT GOING TO FORGET THIS.

Like it was a threat or something. All I could think was WTH?! If she would have said that to me I would have been in her face so fast she wouldn’t have known what hit her.

B Ferris said, I think I need to go outside.

I knew if she went outside she’d start crying and then leave. I put my hand on her back and said, You’re fine, stay here.

I think Rooster and Shutter chimed in again that they’d make room and the subject was finally dropped and people were starting to look at Mike like she was the asshole that she is. Yeah, Link and Stiletto say it’s just because she’s from New York. I’m like I don’t care where you’re from -rude is rude. I get tired of every time we all get together either Mike is an ass or Dino has to get handsy or naked. People say, I don’t’ understand why you don’t ever want to do anything with them.

Really, people?

There are so many other friends who behave themselves and are a joy to be around why do I have to put up with that shit? Anyway, we all got through it but if I have to hang out with them in the future I’m going to start calling them out on their shit. If Mike starts talking rude to me or someone else I’m going say, Mike stop being rude and call her out. If Dino decides to grab my wife’s crotch like she did at Rooster and Shutters show that one time I’m going to immediately get in her face and say That’s not appropriate, keep your hands to yourself. Gone are the days of not saying anything. I mean, sheesh, am I being unreasonable here?

I have two more freaking days until vacation. WHOOP! I need it! I’ve been working on what seems like 100 labs to get ahead in school so I won’t have to be hitting the books while we’re gone. If I don’t talk to you before then I will see you on the flip-side. Cheers!

 

 

school and friday chex mix

It’s my first class of the summer semester tonight. I’m trying to stay on top of it all. I have one online class that everything’s always due on Fridays by midnight -quizzes, homework and labs – I can handle that. I have another that I have to be there physically on Thursday evenings for lecture and lab. I’m trying to get ahead a little because Charlie and I are going out of town for the holiday coming up. I’d really don’t want to be worrying about homework while we’re away despite having to go straight to class right after we roll into town on Thursday.

It’s been four days since I had a drink. I’m trying to cut back on the beer and the carbs and hit the gym more. I already feel better – I could sleep a little better but every morning I’ve been wide awake around 5 a.m. and have gotten up. I sit at the bar in the kitchen and read and drink coffee while the cat begs to be fed. It’s kind of nice – not for him but me.

A bit later today….

I’m sitting here waiting for my evening class to start – there’s several of the guys back from my Spring semester classes here. One guy I have my online class with – we just found out prior to this class that the book we ordered for that class isn’t in and the assignment is due tomorrow – such is college life. SIGH. We both emailed the prof pleading our cases. I have a feeling that most of the class doesn’t have the book yet, either.

I’m really looking forward to tomorrow. Cocktail hour to be precise. We are pretty low-key this weekend. If it rains I may hopefully be able to talk Charlie in to going to a movie. She only wants to go to the theatre that sells beer. I may need to rethink my drinking plan for the weekend. I was planning on tequila since Link says it’s good for you and you can even take it with your medicine or maybe she meant you can take it as medicine. Hmmm.

The guy teaching the class is an engineer with Nokia – wonder how many students try to network with him after the class. Supposedly, this class is going to prepare us for the Net+ certification exam. That’s good – I need more certs if I’m going to find something in the field I’m studying.

The next day…..which means Friday chex mix.

I didn’t get out of class until 10:00 last night. We were scrambling to finish our lab before leaving. If I would have known we’d need to turn it in that night I would have worked on it more. As it was some of the people hadn’t even started it. At least Alton, Antonio and myself started the thing prior to class. The woman on the end who I teamed with – Nancy, I think her name was -totally wasn’t prepared. She’d hadn’t even gotten into Blackboard yet – where all our powerpoints, assignments, and homework is (usually, I sign in the minute I sit down so I’m there) nor did she bring any kind of flash drive to save her work to. She was sitting there trying to email the lab to herself. I shook my head and thought, Amateur before walking out to the car where Antonio was waiting for me to come out and get into my car safely – what a gentleman.

Next week we have to complete two labs. I’m going to be working my tail off in this class I have a feeling. I got a note back from my online prof and she said no worries on the book she’ll extend the assignment.

So, on to Friday! I have an hour and 15 before I’m going to pour myself a drink. I think Benjii and Goya are coming over weather permitting and bringing the dogs. We’re going to have fajitas on the grill and I’m going to attempt to still skip the carbs.

Happy Friday and Cheers!

 

Monday chex

I had a rant post and then a sad one so now on to other things. Maybe a more upbeat one, do you suppose? Charlie and I partied away the weekend starting off with going to a show at Edie’s with B Ferris, Link and Stiletto. We saw Liz Longley and after the show Ferris and Still ran off to buy every album, cd, sticker and key chain this lady had to offer while we sat and chatted to Link. Every once in awhile it’s nice to go to a late show but after standing in line for an hour waiting to get in and then elbowing our way to the very end of the bar I think our Edie’s days are numbered. The last two times we had been there the show started at least an hour after the time it was supposed to.

Saturday, I cooked enchiladas all day – a vegetarian and pulled chicken that was prepared in the Instapot. Charlie made homemade margaritas and Benji, Goya and Emil came over. We played darts, drank margs and then ate a feast and had plenty of leftovers even after sending the entire veg one home with Benji & Goya.

Sunday we just took it easy. We took the dogs down to Piedmont Park and then walked up to Joe’s on Juniper where the service was abysmal. It’s always been a little bad but this time it was amazingly bad. I would say we’d be back but only at the bar where we can’t possibly be forgotten or ignored. Although, I think this was our servers very first job EVER as he couldn’t seem to wrap his head around multi-tasking. Fortunately, it was nice out and by the time we got back to the truck the pups were pooped.

This week, our neighbor down the street gave us his box seat tickets to Atlanta United because he’s going to be out of town traveling. This will be our first trip to Mercedes-Benz Stadium since it was built. I’m sure we’re going to feel spoiled and hopefully he will ask us again to go.

I have one more week of freedom until school starts up again and so I’d better enjoy it while I can.

 

tuesdays loss

Dammit.

I usually never start out a post cursing but I will with this one.

It’s happened. One of my old friends I refer to as a Toad committed suicide last week. I believe she, Alex, tried to commit suicide back in 2011 when I wrote this post. I hadn’t heard from her since then.  I read back on that post and it makes me sad and frustrated. I know I’ve written about this in the past – the four of us friends who all got the same tattoo (I’m not including K in this because he’s not part of the original four) and were very close and then we all had a fall out and never hardly spoke to each other since. The last time I spoke to Alex back in 2011 I did make an attempt to contact Dina and Stephanie to try to repair the four of ours friendship but I got much resistance. I was very bitter after that – I pretty much wanted to tell Stephanie and Dina to go f*ck themselves. I’ve come around since then and let bygones be bygones and have moved on. The only one I have on my FB page is Stephanie who used to date Alex. She was the one who got in contact with me through FB and told me. All because we have deleted each other’s numbers – which, is pretty pathetic because I’ve given her mine twice over the years – I can even read back on my messages and see. Not that this matters but Stephanie told me how it happened and that Rachael knew more of the details. I emailed Rachael and said how sorry I was and that I just heard. She emailed me this really terse reply back that I ended up deleting.

Why do people have to hold on to the same old grudges when it comes to losing someone? Can’t we all just let it go and remember the good times. Because they were good times whether anyone will admit it or not. That’s what Alex would have wanted.

I’m taking this a lot harder than I thought. I still flash back to a time where we were getting ready to go ride motorcycles. I was at her apartment on Buford Highway. I had ridden my bike over there to pick her up to go ride. She was getting ready and I don’t know how we got on this conversation but she told me that if she was going to kill herself that she would just do it and not tell anyone. I know I couldn’t have stopped it. She’s been lost for a very long time. It’s just one of those things that will probably always drive me a bit crazy, frustrate me and make me sad. She had so much going for her and she did everything she put her mind to. She could do anything and yet they found her on the floor two days after she died with a needle in her arm, instructions on her desk on how to do it.

Yes, when Alex put her mind to something you couldn’t stop her from doing it. RIP, Alex & beloved toad. You will be missed!

 

 

 

 

 

no dice no d*ck

I admit I haven’t written in a while – well, except for that last rant I left up for a day or so then felt guilty about it and made it private. Sometimes I should just shut up  and change the behavior instead of ranting about it on here. But, it is my blog and I feel entitled to rant a little because if people don’t like it they can go read about Trump on CNN or something.

I finished up Spring semester in school with a 95% in both classes and an IT fundamentals certification. Baby steps, I know. Summer semester starts up in three weeks and I hope to be ahead of the game before classes start so I can keep up. I think by the end of the Fall semester I should have enough classes and certifications under my belt that things professionally will look a lot more promising different. I won’t say that things are entirely that bad right now but things can always change quickly and like the Summer semester I want to stay ahead of the game.

We had great weather here last weekend which meant we went and did a lot. We ended up at our neighbors down the street for dinner last night and Yolanda was there as well. We hadn’t seen her since guitar classes were over. I asked if she had been playing but she said no. I said I’d been learning some songs on Fender play since then and was thinking of having a guitar practice dinner at the house sometime next week if she’d like to join but she said she’d be out of town. No, that sounds great, I cant make it this time but please include me in the next. So, I was like ok, then. I get it, you’re not interested – guitar was in the past but there’s no reason to hang out after that unless we happen to see her at our neighbors and I just skipped a whole bunch of ranting over A-gays and A-listers but instead of ranting I’m just never going to ask again. Maybe we’ll see you at the next dinner. I have too much to do to chase people down these days. Either you’re in or you’re not and if you’re not then moving on. Next.

My sister tried to call me this past weekend but I didn’t answer. If she doesn’t leave me a message then I wait and call her back the following week when she’s pushed for time and can’t talk very long. If a few times go by and it’s not urgent she will text me instead which is even better. Most of the time when I talk to her I try not to give away much information which is to my benefit. I started doing this after the whole sex change rumor my father started throughout the county I’m from. So now I don’t tell her DICK (no pun intended) so she doesn’t have anything to gossip about concerning me to our father, our relatives, anyone in the county who will listen including and not limited to the liars club that he hangs out with every morning for breakfast. I’m sure there’s people in my hometown now who are dying to know if I have a package now. Maybe out of shits and giggles the next time I go home I will pack more than a bag.

Today she texted me she was leaving the country for work and knowing she was at the airport waiting to board the plane and pressed for time I called her back. This time she was going on about our father’s cell phone service and how he tried to have our step mother’s phone shut off because she died and they wouldn’t until he showed them a death certificate. Long story short she’s putting him on her cell phone service. What. Ever. I said, I wasn’t under the impression he was talking much on his cellphone and when he gets a new phone store my number in it because he never calls me. Not that I care if he calls me but HE NEVER DOES. I told her I was tired of always having to call him because he never called me. Let’s just see if she says anything to him about it. This was only a test really to see if she would tell him what I said. If he calls me then I know for a fact she tells him everything I tell her. Anyway, that’s a family rant that I allow myself.

 

 

 

 

 

the advice line

The other night while I was in class my younger cousin, Michael was texting me about how he doesn’t know what to do about his son being gay and about how he’s cross dressing now. I told him that he’s probably just acting out to get attention. Mike went on to say he was trying to find organizations to talk to about this and reaching out to myself, Jace and our other gay cousin Stephan. I mean like dude you have PLENTY of us to get advice from.

He asked: Do you know of any chat rooms or party lines regarding this situation?

I’m thinking, My God you really are living in Hicksville, Indiana aren’t you – I haven’t seen a chat room since the AOL days and what the hell is a party line? Was that during the Vietnam war?

Meanwhile I had to pay attention to my computer class on networking. I suggested a PFLAG group – surely to God he would have heard of that and went back to trying to pay attention to LAN’s, Hubs and Switches.

I messaged Jace this morning and related my conversation with his younger brother. I said, He should be worrying more about WTF the kids are going to do when they graduate high school not Emilio wearing his grandmother’s old shoes. I directed him to a PFLAG group in another-hick-town, Indiana on FB.

I mean, at least they have these things now – not when we were in school – maybe there was a party line back then.

Jace: We’ve all been telling him this. We all nod our heads when he says his son is gay and we’re like, Okaaaaay – and……I mean this isn’t a big deal like when we were in school. I directed him to an Indy PFLAG group on FB.

Well, maybe that’s ones more progressive but I don’t really think Mikie can handle anything too progressive.

We had a laugh over that and then we both had to go to work. There was nothing mentioned of Samantha coming out from him. I’m wondering if this has just pushed him over the cliff of what’s going on with Emilio or is it that since he’s recently divorced seeking attention as well as Emilio. I didn’t push for dates of when Samantha could visit as I didn’t feel it was a good time.

I’m getting ready to register for summer quarter and after much thought I’m going to suck it up and take two classes instead of just one. I know it’s going to be a lot to take on in just 8 weeks but I spoke to my professor from the networking class the other night and he looked at my curriculum and said it would be best if I could knock out these two pre-requisite classes this summer so I would be ready for the CISCO and Linux classes next fall and spring quarters. He’s also teaching one the of the classes online but told me I should take the ground class but that I could email him any questions I had if I had difficulties. There’s also this guy in my lab group who is taking the exact same classes this summer and we’ve agreed to study together. So, I think I’m going to be ok. It’s just going to be a lot of work but if I can get through I’ll be where I need to be in my curriculum next fall.

And, then there’s the unsolicited advice…….there’s this guy I work with who got me into the program – and, he kind of drives me crazy ALL THE TIME sometimes. He’s graduating in May from the program – that’s how far ahead of me he is. When I told him that I was going to take two classes this semester he went on and on about how hard it was going to be and how this guy who went through the class with him flunked out and yada, yada, yada. I wanted to punch him. I mean, just tell me I can’t do something and I’ll mutha-fucking do it, shut up.

Like I said, it will be a lot of work but I’ll get through.

 

gay chex mix

Most of you know that I grew up in a very small town in Indiana – on a farm, in fact. Yeah, stow away all the romantic thoughts you have of growing up on a farm because there’s nothing great about it. It’s hard work –all the time. There’s nothing great about having to roll out of bed at 4:30 a.m. to feed the cows or better yet go find them because they got out. Nothing great about having to come home from school and work until dinner time. Fortunately, I had a mother who put her foot down later in my teenage years and let me join all kinds of sports and band. I joined every band activity I could – orchestra band, marching band, drum and bugle corp and let’s not forget jazz band where we performed at every game imaginable. That got me out of the farm work indefinitely. During this time my bestie was my first cousin – Jace. We hung out together all the time. So much, in fact that our parents accused us of dating each other – which, couldn’t be farther from the truth because we were both secretly in the closet.

After our senior year Jace moved to Florida where he came out. I quietly came out years later – after college, in fact, because I was afraid that if my parents found out they would yank me out. I could totally see them saying that college making me gay. This is how backwards the general mentality is where I came from. I didn’t completely come out until I moved to Atlanta and was paying my own bills.

Jace is married to his husband, Diego– who he’s been with for almost 30 years. They built a McMansion in our hometown and he started an IT business he runs out of their basement with 4 employees. We have another cousin who is gay as well. Eventually, the family has come around to our sexuality – I think old age mellows some people. They don’t have the energy to fight anymore. Plus, us gays are starting to outnumber the straights in my family because Jace’s younger brother Michael – who is the only kid in the family to produce offspring just found out that two of his kids Emilio and Samantha are gay.

Now there’s five (six if you count Diego) of us cousins who are gay. Michael is not thrilled that two of his kids are gay. In fact, shit hit the fan this week when it was Samantha’s turn to come out.  All I can say is at least they’re healthy and aren’t doing drugs. My uncle – Jace’s father and my father’s brother keeps asking Emilio (who at 10 is very effeminate) if he wants to grow up and drive bulldozers.

Of course Emilio doesn’t want to drive bulldozers – he probably wants to go to New York and be on Broadway since the last time I was home I asked him what he had been up to and he told me he was in The Sound of Music at school. Samantha is in to women’s basketball and sports. I’m trying to get Michael to let me fly her down here for a visit so I can take her to a game. But, I’m going to wait for the dust to settle before I push anymore.

The holidays are about to get more interesting in that family is all I’ve got to say.

 

weekend chex mix

I think I mentioned in the last post that the magnolias have been blooming this time of year so last Friday Charlie and I went out and got a saucer magnolia and she planted it in the back yard for me in memory of my mother. It also so happened that we bought it on the same day as my step mother’s bday. We’ve been planting trees in memory of people lost. In addition to the magnolia, we planted two cherries in the front for both my mothers and a true red crape myrtle in the back for Emil’s sister.

Last week we had our guitar recital. All the classes with the school performed, but our class had to go first because we were guitar I. We played our asses off to Jet Plane and sat down and watched the rest of the groups perform.  Apparently, we had the most recently released song because the banjo group got up and played some song from the 1800’s. Charlie and Kim came to watch (Kim made it to one class/jam session and decided to not come back and talked the instructor hippy lady into retaking it in May). Kim was clapping along and having a good time and Charlie was looking on wide-eyed like, You weren’t kidding when you said they play old hillbilly songs. WTH!? I was glad to be done with it to be honest. Emil had been coming over on Fridays and playing a bit and I learn a lot more doing that than anything. Thursday, it was pouring it’s ass off outside and we stayed in. Friday we had Emil over to play and then Link showed up with a couple bottles of tequila and it was on. Despite throwing down I made 100% on my midterm the next day. The weekend was so beautiful and we were outside most of it.

This weekend Bernice and Ralph are supposed to be in town so we’re hoping to do an oyster happy hour somewhere. Saturday we’re wide open and I’m hoping the weather is going to be decent while they’re here. I know it’s going to be much cooler than it was last weekend. That’s March for you! Next week we’re getting out of town for a few days to take the dogs to a cabin next to a river. I’m hoping to do a little fishing while we’re there and we got the dogs a couple of swim toys to play with in the river. This is part I of our take-the-dogs-on-vacation in a III part series so stay tuned for cute dog photos.

If I don’t talk to you before then have a great weekend! Cheers!