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“Too big! Too small!”

September 16, 2004, 11:15 PM

I saw a commercial for Wilkins Shoe Center on CNN this evening, and it starts out with someone trying on shoes, appropriately enough.

They say, “Too large!” showing someone with a shoe that is obviously too large on their foot. Then they show one saying, “Too small!” with someone with their foot halfway in an obviously-too-small shoe. Then the announcer says, “Just right!” and shoes a person with a properly fitting shoe.

It reminds me of something I saw on Today’s Special’s “Shoes” episode. It was a scene with Jodie walking past a row of shoes, essentially gesturing with her feet at each one, before putting the last pair on. It goes like this:

Too big!
Too small!
Not right… at all!
(These shoes were flippers)
Too loose!
Oh, too tight!
Ahhh… these feel just right!
(Puts these shoes on)

Thus every time I see the commercial, I expect after “Too small!” to hear “Not right… at all!” Interesting, indeed.

Categories: Today's Special

With all the rain we’ve been having…

September 9, 2004, 2:06 AM

I’m going to Washington DC today, and it’s probably going to be a soggy day, based on the looks of things.

Doesn’t bother me. Means I’ll get to see a lot of Mode 2 operation (Mode 2 is manual with speed protection).

Mom was concerned about all the rain. So I cited that strange dream I had back in February (according to this journal, February 19, entitled “Your assignment: Figure out where this dream came from”). It’s the one where I went Metro kayaking. I still think that’s one darn strange dream, and if I recall, at the time the people on SubTalk thought it was off-the-wall, too. And in that dream, if I recall, paddling a Breda down the water was for the less-experienced while rafting with a Rohr was the more challenging.

What’s odd, though, is how much that matches the actual trains. According to a few train operators I’ve spoken with, the Rohrs have some really weird quirks that make them more challenging to operate. Bredas are much less quirky.

Ah, well.

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Categories: Television, Walmart, WMATA

“I don’t want to feel like a fish with no water!”

August 26, 2004, 8:04 AM

At work yesterday, we were actually discussing those public service ads that run on cable TV. Like the one where the fish tank slowly loses water talking about asthma, or the one where the guy walks into the store to buy a wallet and he gets a really tiny wallet for the really tiny money he’ll be making as a high school dropout.

And then there’s one ad that, among the people in our group, that kind of creeped us all out a little bit:

Nobody likes me. Nobody. Maybe it’s because I like to attack people. Men. Women. Kids. I can leave them as stammering, confused, scared imitations of their former selves. If they don’t stop me, I just might leave them that way for life. I am a stroke.

A little creepy, because he looks like a pretty rough character there, with the wrinkled face in the shadow. But still, it’s a very memorable way to get the message across. I think we’ll all understand the seriousness of a stroke now if we didn’t before.

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Categories: Greta, Television, WMATA

I don’t know what happened, but it definitely looked unpleasant

June 12, 2004, 11:59 PM

On my way back from Charlottesville, where I spent the day today (somehow I got a Saturday off without asking for it – go figure), on US 340 right before the intersection of 340 and 608, I had to slow down considerably. It was the only smart thing to do considering that there were northbound cars traveling in the left southbound lane. I’m like, what in the heck and slowed down and got in the right lane. Once I got closer, it all made some sense. First thing I saw was lots of shattered glass strewn across four of the five lanes of US 340 right where Stuart Avenue meets 340. I looked left, and I see two cars in some poor innocent person’s front yard at a weird angle. Looks like they didn’t go there on purpose. Some other cars were parked nearby. Then there was a guy putting out flares. I don’t know any details other than what I saw, and don’t know how bad the damage was or whether anyone was hurt or not. But I can tell you this. It definitely doesn’t look pleasant.

Otherwise, I had fun in Charlottesville. First, though, I got the Previa’s front end aligned at Eavers Tire in Stuarts Draft. That was related to the blowout I had two weeks ago. While I was waiting, I worked on my phone some, downloading a new version of Mobile IM (remember that my AIM screen name on my phone is Schumin Wireless), plus downloaded Tetris and Ms. Pac Man onto my phone.

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“Arlington Cemetery station is closed! Please get back onto the train and go to the next station!”

May 31, 2004, 9:36 PM

Well… my birthday trip to Washington DC that I took a day early (my birthday is the 30th, and I went on the 29th) went very well. A friend of mine actually put it this way…

Um, do you realize what is going on in DC this weekend? I’d leave Transit Deprived Town in the Middle of Nowhere, VA now if you want parking at Vienna come Saturday morning.

I do not take offense to “Transit Deprived Town in Middle of Nowhere, VA”. I am both transit-deprived locally, and also in the middle of nowhere. And Staunton’s trolley-bus system, the closest thing to transit around here, doesn’t even follow a schedule, but rather, they just say that they run a 20-minute loop, and so a trolley-bus should be there about every 20 minutes or so when service is running. They do call their two services “Green Line” and “Red Line”, which amuses me, though.

But anyway, though, the main concern in the comment was that DC was supposed to be swamped with tourists for the World War II Memorial dedication, which I was already aware about. The concern, of course, was that I would not be able to get parking at Vienna. Hadn’t planned for that, but after thinking about it, I determined that if I didn’t get parking at Vienna, I would head over to Franconia-Springfield on the Blue Line and park over there.

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“When the water fills the clouds, then they call on lightning! When the rain needs to pour, then they call on me! And I crackle, and I flash… people think I’m frightening… when I dance through the clouds and send the rain free!”

May 21, 2004, 11:04 PM

You know the story. Thunder blows its giant trumpet, and then…

“I must dance my dance… at last I am set free! It’s my chance to dance (to dance his dance!) where the whole world can see me! I can flash through the sky… and light up the heavens…”

Yes, it rained today. Specifically, we had some mighty thunderstorms. It’s not often that you can see lightning through the skylights at Wal-Mart. It’s also not often that you can hear the rain on the roof from the salesfloor at Wal-Mart. Usually you can hear the rain on the roof in the back room, since it’s usually quiet back there. But to hear it over the din of the customers is is something else. You know that it’s got to be raining hard for that to happen. And it was LOUD on the roof, too! And to hear thunder loud and clear in the store is another thing.

And the ride home was just fun. Raining and all that all the way home, with lightning flashing all over the sky, really lighting up the sky. If only I had Big Mavica and a tripod with me to get a long-exposure shot of it all. And watch me get zapped in the process. It would be a heck of a way to go, though.

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Dumb, dumb, dumb animals…

May 12, 2004, 9:58 PM

People really need to get a handle on their animals. On the way home from work, I nearly ran over two rabbits, three cats, and a dog. I didn’t actually hit any of them, thank goodness, though one of the cats was a very close call. We can’t fault people for the rabbits, since they’re wild, but for the cats and the dog, geeeeeeeeeez… People need to keep better tabs on where their animals are because it would really be a shame for them to get run over. I really don’t want to do it. Hit a skunk one time on the way home from Harrisonburg, and that was just ugly. And stinky. But people’s pets out on the road, that’s just unacceptable. People should show a little more love towards their pets and keep them out of harm’s way. That’s what we do with Greta. She has the whole house to roam around in, and her fenced-in yard, keeping her inside and safe, and keeping other things out.

Otherwise, though, tomorrow morning comes early, as I once again work the 7-4 shift, after three blissful days working the 11 AM to 8 PM shift at the Service Desk. I love that 11-8 shift. Not too early, and not too late. So tomorrow morning, I got up early.

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“It’s my nightly meringue mask…”

May 2, 2004, 4:03 AM

In case you’re wondering, no, I do not mash my face into a cake every night, a la Mrs. Doubtfire. But, in the breakroom at work yesterday, I did do a near-perfect imitation of Robin Williams as Daniel Hillard as Mrs. Doubtfire going “HELLO!” right after he mashed his face into that cake to make up for the fact that Mrs. Doubtfire’s face was run over by a truck.

Meanwhile, I so hate mornings. I have to work 7 AM to 4 PM today. For me, that means getting up at 4 AM to have enough time to perk up and get ready for work. It should be known that I have a big soda and turn on Ducktales on Toon Disney right when I wake up for these early shifts. I so love watching Scrooge and crew, and this episode was amusing, watching Fenton Crackshell, the man behind Gizmo-Duck, deal with a conflict between his girlfriend as Fenton, and this robot maid who has a huge crush on Gizmo-Duck. Either way, it was quite a hoot, as he managed to keep his girlfriend plus get rid of the robot who loved Gizmo-Duck. And he kept his secret identity a secret. If only all of our problems were able to be resolved in thirty minutes, minus time for commercial breaks. That would be nice… imagine that in real life. You’re about to get decked by someone, and inches before you get slammed, it’s like, “HOLD IT! We’ll be right back!” and then people try to sell you the newest way to get your clothes bright shocking white. Then we come back from the commercial, and then get clobbered.

Anyway, though, that’s enough out of me… I should be getting ready for work now…

Categories: Television, Walmart

Good morning!

April 12, 2004, 4:33 AM

My goodness, I hate mornings! But that’s what my day’s going to be today, as I have to work the 7 AM to 4 PM shift at the Service Desk. I don’t know what it is about me, but I’ve never been able to handle the mornings like I do the afternoons and evenings. I so can’t stand mornings. I’m no good before at least 10:00. Those 11 AM to 8 PM shifts on the Service Desk have spoiled me. Thankfully, though, I don’t get these early shifts that often.

Also, I had an interesting thing happen to me last night. I was investigating a troublemaker on the forums, and was zapping some rather obscene posts that this individual posted. All of a sudden, the posts reappeared, plus the forum went out of maintenance mode (which basically turns off the boards temporarily), which I put it in while Entangled Web moved me to a new server.

Turns out that while I was working, the DNS change, which usually takes a couple of days to propagate across the Internet, reached me while I was working on the forums. Thus I went from my site on the old server to my site on the new server. And in an area that made it through just fine.

The forums weathered the move just fine, but you know one thing that didn’t? The main site. Now before the DNS change reached me, I had made a small change to the splash page on only the new site (changing the © date to 2004, which I’d been meaning to do for a while) so I would know that it had cut over. Turns out I didn’t need to. The site looks like a bomb hit it! Basically what happened is when they moved my site, they didn’t get it all over there in all the right places. So now I have to fix it all up and get it running right again.

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How did this dream come about?

March 29, 2004, 9:41 AM

I don’t get this one. This is a strange dream that I had last night that I don’t understand at all how it came about.

In the dream, they’re scrapping the set for The Cosby Show. So far, so good. The show’s over, we rationalized, and so they’re dismantling the set since the show has ended its run. Heck, we even had an appearance from Theo’s friend Walter Bradley, better known to audiences as Cockroach. Don’t know why I was on the Cosby Show set, but there was the Huxtables’ living room, ready to get dismantled.

Cockroach, however, in my dream didn’t look like he normally did on the show. Instead he looked like he did in the episode where he and Theo were going to audition for a spot with “The Mannequins”, which required them to shave their heads. Theo never got that far, but Cockroach did, and shaved his head.

So in my dream, Cockroach looked like this:

Coakroach with shaved head

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Categories: Dreams, Television

This proves that I can sing…

March 23, 2004, 11:52 PM

It was an associate’s birthday, and so I got to sing Happy Birthday over the loudspeaker for them, at the urging of one of our CSMs. So my rendition of “Happy Birthday” was the talk of the store today. So that was fun.

Otherwise, I had a little shopping disappointment after work. My order from Casual Male was waiting there on the porch for me. That was exciting. So then I took them in and opened them up. Now I wasn’t sure what “French Terry” meant exactly when I ordered the “French Terry Cargo Pants”, but I expected more along the lines of what you would think of as cargo pants. These were more like sweatpants. They were too much like sweatpants to use at work. So I never even took those out of their little bags.

I also got some Dockers corduroy pants. Those fit the program as far as appearance, but failed in the fit, being too small in the lower leg (that’s a new one – usually it’s quite loose around my calves, and I’m worrying about waist and thighs). So I neatly folded the pants back up and put them back in their little bag. How disappointing.

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“Pardon me, do you have any Grey Poupon?”

March 23, 2004, 11:22 AM

I remember that phrase from the commercials in the 1990s. You have someone asking some totally random person at a random location, “Pardon me, do you have any Grey Poupon?” It just strikes me as amusing.

I mean really, who is going to just randomly be carrying a bottle of Grey Poupon with them?

I usually mention that when I get the Dijon Mustard dipping sauce for the chicken at work. I say, “This is the kind of thing you just want to say, ‘Pardon me, do you have any Grey Poupon?’ for.” And I’ve never even had Grey Poupon before, either. One of those things I need to do one of these days, I guess.

Especially if I’m going to say it, I might as well have at least eaten it, eh?

Categories: Television, Walmart

What a surprise to find as I was leaving for work…

March 17, 2004, 9:39 PM

Look at this:

Pink flamingoes on the neighbors' yard

This is our neighbors’ front yard. And it is covered with pink flamingoes. Yes, pink flamingoes. From what I understand, it has something to do with a church program, but I’m not sure what it is. Still, I was amused, and snapped a picture of it with my cell phone. I’ll take some higher-resolution ones with Big Mavica tomorrow before I go to work.

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Categories: Amusing, Television, Walmart

Today I got majorly confuzzelated.

March 7, 2004, 1:45 AM

Call it confused, confuzzled, or confuzzelated, but let me tell you… I was going in so many different directions today I probably couldn’t have told you which way was up.

New experience of the day: I got to spend an hour out in the parking lot doing carts. We have a machine that pushes, and is controlled remotely by the associate. Then the associate stands in front and steers. And it sure beats the heck out of pushing them by hand, which I also did some. It was also nice to spend some time outside, which was a nice change from the Service Desk, since we’re in what could almost be described as a well-lit cave.

And I learned that I can control a machine pushing a pile of carts that is about 50 feet long (at least) better than I can control one of the electric carts that people ride around the store. One time when I was greetering, I had to park one of those things after someone was done with it, and promptly backed into a wall. That, by the way, earned me the affectionate nickname “Crash”.

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Categories: Television, Walmart

“Heartburn, upset stomach, indigestion, diarrhea!”

January 15, 2004, 5:58 PM

I saw today what could best be described as the strangest and most off-the-wall commercial ever made. It’s for Pepto Bismol.

Already you know where this is going.

As you know, Pepto Bismol is the “pink stuff” that you take for various gastrointestinal ailments. So the single singer on the commercial is saying, “Heartburn, upset stomach, indigestion, diarrhea!” like it’s something fun to have. Meanwhile, the people on the screen are grabbing their chests (for heartburn), then their mouths (upset stomach), their stomachs (for indigestion), and then their butts (diarrhea).

I have not laughed so hard over a commercial in a long time. And the way they were grabbing their various body parts, it looked like they were doing a very strange dance. The diarrhea dance, we could call it.

Or maybe not. Still, I am quite amused.

Categories: Television