Thursday, January 28, 2016

You'll Not See Nothing Like The Mighty Quinn

This is a really cool video of a dogsled trip around downtown Pittsburgh during the major snowstorm over the past weekend. 

The guy filming, one Matt Philips, films quite a bit of adventurous stuff. Check out some of his other videos - here's his YouTube channel

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

You'll Shoot'em Down Because You're Waiting For Someone Good To Come On

So... the hosts of The Tonight Show have been, in order: 

Jack Paar

Johnny Carson

Jay Leno

and Jimmy Fallon.

Notice anything about that lineup?

All their first names begin with J!

Coincidence? I think not.

EDIT: I was informed that the first Tonight Show host was actually early TV comedian Steve Allen, and I had forgotten about Conan O'Brien's nine-month stint as host after Leno's first 'retirement'. So the theory may be Jossed. Let's wait twenty years and see who succeeds Fallon. 

Friday, January 22, 2016

This Here's A Story 'Bout The House Rent Blues

"I'm terribly sorry, Toby old chap, but you're ineligible for unemployment being that you're, well... a locomotive."
So I was laid off from my most recent job (a temp assignment in Murrysville) a couple weeks ago. That's not a good feeling, especially with student loans to keep up with. Worse still, I had really gotten to like the place and especially the people there. But I will say one thing with certainty: Of the two jobs I had previously left behind, I will never go back to either of them under any circumstances.

Yes, I started out, like so many other vaguely fresh-faced young people working at McDonald's. One thing that was, however, different in my case was that I began after college. I left State College without having completed my degree, and without one jot of experience. (Looking back, a year of the place BEFORE college might have changed some things for me. I also think it would be wise to look for a small amount of job experience in college admissions, but hey - what do I know?) I think everyone can relate to the kind of suckage that such jobs seemingly consistently are, so I thin I'll pass on talking about most of it. My coworkers were the usual mix; mostly local high school kids and the like. There were some of the crew I liked and some I didn't; and the owners were good guys but with autocratic tendencies.

That said, what I got tired of fast was the customers. Most were fairly indifferent; and really, if any were outright nice people, there was no time to find out. But the bad ones, holy fucking shit. Typically the bad customers were just miserable, clueless (one time the nearest Wendy's had to close their drive-thru because some idiot managed to wreck into it, and so their customers came to us - and ORDERED WENDY'S MENU ITEMS.), or expected to get stuff for free (e.g. the wad that canceled his order because there was a 50-cent charge to add lettuce to his sandwich, and said rather loudly that he'd go to Wendy's because he'd get it for free, not factoring in that Wendy's is pricier...). But let me tell you, we had some real lunatics come though. Like the cranky old biddy who complained about yellow crap in the vanilla milkshake we served her. It turned out to be VANILLA SYRUP. Y'know, the actual FLAVOR. And she went on this rant about how we were all terrible at running the restaurant and how supposedly her 30s-ish son sitting there in the dining room right then could do better. Or the people who got MORE disappointed when we fixed their complaints. Yeah. That actually happened.

I finally got fed up with this crap, and found another job. In hindsight, the better option might have been politics, or maybe guerilla warfare. Mainly because said job turned out to be Leed's. What a beyond worthless, entire-family-fucking piece of ass crap waste-of-time company this turned out to be. Spoiler alert: I eventually walked out. I managed to piss away four years there on 50+ hour weeks and sometimes weekends. But worse - remember my complaints about the customers at McDonald's? Well, now I WORKED WITH THEM. Sure, I had some good coworkers, but all in all, most of them were lucky enough to move on or unlucky enough to get fired by the time I was done. And you wouldn't believe what it took to get rid of the bad ones. Especially when some of them were friends with a supervisor. I have said that I would refuse to go back even at gunpoint, and I mean it. Surely getting shot would be less painful.

But fortunately, there's a happy ending to this story. Sort of. For the time being, at least. I'm employed again and have returned to the job I lamented losing at the start of this essay (read: rant). I was ready to go to another assignment elsewhere in the Valley; everything was in by last Friday and we were just waiting on the company to respond. Monday, I get a call that the company that laid me off was looking for someone in a different department. I really struggled with such a short-notice decision, but in the end, I elected to return.

Friday, January 15, 2016

Farmer Wins A Trophy And Hands It To You

I think this might be the start of a series. The subject being weird pictures of musicians.

Mcgwireonfire, via Wikimedia
The hell happened here? This is a picture of the avant-noise band Deerhoof. I think they're still alive. I mean, I know their music is weird (one of the few bands whose output borders on non-music that I like), but this is just strange. Then again, I've never seen them live, despite them coming to the Warhol museum twice that I can think of. I wonder if this is just something they do...

I should point out that lead singer Satomi Matsuzaki joined the band a week after arriving in San Francisco from Japan, and went on the band's first tour the following week. With NO previous musical experience. (That should explain... something.) But the most inexplicable part of this is that I got th photo from their Wikipedia page. Like with Robert Pollard linked above, whose idea was this?

Thursday, January 14, 2016

You Got A Hubcap Diamond Star Halo

Well, it sems I did it again. I went to Dee's on Thursday and put ten bucks in the jukebox. So immediately after I went up, there was a lady who put another ten in right after me, and she spent XTC, 80s Neil Young, Guided By Voices and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs waiting for ten bucks worth of T. Rex. That's a lot of the late Marc Bolan.