Thursday, March 31, 2011

More Photography

As promised, here are a couple more pictures from the album. This album is titled Fall Foliage. This first picture was taken from my deck on that dry day we had back in November.  Today not a single leaf remains on that tree.
This second photo comes from about a quarter mile down the street.  I didn't get the time of day I was hoping for, but if memory serves me correctly this was taken the day after surgery and I wasn't concerned enough about lighting to wait around for perfect conditions.  I was just glad to have blue skies, and I think it turned out pretty nice anyway, particularly since this was taken with my phone.  I really like this because it brings back fond memories.  Back when I was still working in Redmond, I would take this road home from work every afternoon, and for a good stretch of the fall, it would be just the right time of day that the sun would be behind the trees, the street would be covered with leaves, and it would all have a beautiful golden glow.  These days I get to take the bus home and have a nice view of traffic and hobos peeing on street corners.  Not that I'm bitter or anything.


I just can't stop laughing at this Craigslist ad.  I can't quite put my finger on it, but something about it is just a little off.  Just in case the ad gets pulled I'm going to grab a screen shot of it, so here you go. 

If you decide you're going to get some hay, do your best to avoid being stabbed with a pitchfork.  I also found this, which nearly brought tears to my eyes.

I'm going to be laughing about this for days.

Pro Day

This just in:  at the UW pro day, Jake Locker taunted the NFL, scouts, Seattle sports fans, newspaper readers, and various others.
The Seattle Times had a better picture on the front page of the sports section but decided not to include it in the online story so you'll have to make do with this similar image from the Tacoma News Tribune.  Shortly after the pro day ended he put on some medieval armor and said, "I fart in your general direction" with a French accent.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011


My buddy PGT has made his first foray into the world of blogging with his site Composition.  An amateur photographer and nature lover, his blog is dedicated to photographs he has taken, with a heavy focus on mountains.  So head on over and welcome him to the world of blogging, and by that I mean inundate his comments section with vulgar and offensive comments.  And as my own personal tribute, here's a photo I took last winter, and maybe if you kids are real good then I'll share some more of the Craw Fu photo album later. 

One final note:  most of the pictures I take turn out very poorly, this is one of the few I really like, so don't go thinking I'm any kind of photographer.  I'm strictly a point and shoot guy and even at that the vast majority of my photos I take with my phone.  As soon as I upgrade my phone, however, I expect my photos to upgrade as well.  My current phone actually has a decent 5 MP camera, but the replacements I'm looking at have a 8 MP cameras and what's more can take HD video.  Ooooh!

Downtown Is Fun

Ok, so a lot of weird stuff can happen in just a couple short blocks. Yesterday I discovered there’s a Right Aid 2 blocks away on 3rd & Cherry, so today I decided to stop in there to see if they have any different stuff than the Bartell’s across the street which I typically frequent. Well, it was significantly more ghetto, and there was one super drunk guy in front of me in line. I don’t know what kind of person is completely hammered at 1:30 in the afternoon, but he was actually dressed reasonably nicely (wearing a sport jacket), but he couldn’t even stand still, he was wobbling all over the place. Then he got up to the register and said something unintelligible. The cashier asked him to repeat himself and he slowed down and managed to get out, “where’s my bag?” The cashier pointed at his hand and said, “it’s in your hand.” Then he looked down, looking confused and said something else I couldn’t understand. Apparently the cashier understood him because she said, “that’s the only bag you had when you came in here.” He continued to look confused and then walked out of the store without saying anything else.

As if that weren’t enough, on the way back to the office there was a guy walking the other direction who was yelling at somebody on the phone. All I heard was, “you’re being so foul right now. You’re hella foul. You f*&#@ing bleepity bleep …” and then he got far enough away that I couldn’t hear any more. He seemed a trifle hypocritical though.

I miss working on the East side.

In unrelated news, every time I see someone with an iPad, the first thought that goes through my head is, "good God that's a gigantic phone."  I'm not sure I'll be able to make the transition to tablet computers.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Random Thoughts

As I was washing my frying pan this morning, a thought occurred to me. Nothing sticks to teflon, so Spiderman would be almost completely powerless against someone coated in teflon, so why did he never have to fight a villain named Teflonman? Is it a brand name and there are trademarks involved or something? Or did that villain exist and I simply don't know about him because I've only seen the movies?

From there I moved on to wondering: if pro is the opposite of con, is prostitution the opposite of constitution? And is it illegal because the two took opposing views on the stitution issue? That's the government for you, stamping out any opposing perspectives.

Finally, in an attempt to add one more useless app to an already overcrowded cell phone app market, I wonder if there is a rotary phone app. It might help to integrate some technophobes into the modern age. Also it would give all the youngsters who never had to dial a rotary phone some old timey fun.

I also feel that the term 'old timey' is not used frequently enough these days.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Comcast At It Again

Recently I mentioned that Comcast is doing it's best to defend it's title of Worst Company In America as voted on by readers of The Consumerist.  Well, it gets better.  Now, rumor has it, Comcast has sent memos to all of it's employees encouraging them to vote for their opposition in the first round - Charter Communications - Chicago style (early and often).  I've talked to enough Comcast CSRs to know that at least the folks working in the call centers hate their jobs, and I wouldn't be surprised if a majority of the remainder of the employees felt the same way.  If they don't give their customers any respect, why would they give their employees any either.  Anyway, as you may have guessed by now, this backfired in a big way.  The first round poll is now closed and Comcast crushed Charter, garnering nearly 84% of the vote.  The only blowout more lopsided in this round was scored by BP. 

The true gem of the article was this little insight that I couldn't have worded any better myself:
But reigning Golden Poo holder Comcast has decided that, rather than actually do anything about the problems that make it a perennial favorite
It's just laughable that their response to poor service is never to address the issues and make improvements.  As if strong arming employees into voting in a poll is going to make customers forget that they have been screwed by Comcast in the past, or that changing their brand to Xfinity will make people think it's a whole new terrible company instead of the same old one.  It's sad really.

Well, they've advanced to round 2 where they will face off against Best Buy and no doubt crush them handily.  Other than having employees with no real knowledge or training, I've had no issues with Best Buy.  But what do you expect from minimum wage staff, it's not really any different service than I'd get at any other large department store.  Comcast will continue to steamroll the competition in this poll until they run into the unstoppable BP buzzsaw.  Bank of America is the only company that will even keep it close with BP, but even taking the homes away from thousands upon thousands of people will be enough I'm afraid.  Stay tuned as the competition continues.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Brownie Humidor

They say that necessity is the mother of invention, and I currently have a necessity.  You see, this weekend I significantly underestimated the volume of brownies that the Costco mix would make.  Now I have more brownies than is safe for one man to eat and they are starting to dry out and get hard.  That is why somebody needs to invent the brownie humidor.  Years ago, when cigars were drying out and losing their flavor, someone stepped up and invented the humidor to keep them fresh.  All these decades later I find it hard to believe that no comparable item exists to keep my brownies moist, gooey, and delicious.  And it would work for other baked goods too:  cookies, turnovers, and even croissants.  I'm not sure a standard humidor would work, the crumbs and what not would get the wood too messy and would be difficult to clean.  Perhaps I need a walk in humidor in my kitchen.  I may have to contact a contractor.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Useless Trivia

And now for today's timely edition of useless trivia:
What was the original significance of the “O” and “Mac” in Irish surnames?

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

March Madness

It's that time of year again, time to fill out your brackets.  No, not your NCAA tournament bracket, but the Worst Company in America bracket, brought to you by The Consumerist.  There are some solid contenders this year, a few banks, BP, Facebook, but my money is on Comcast retaining their title.  I believe they are the top seed for their decades of abysmal customer service, and frankly the only people I know who have never had an issue with Comcast are the people who have never had their service.  Although they are matched up against Charter Communications in round one, a company that my parents had a great deal of trouble with before they decided to just cancel their service and live with whatever programming they can get over the air or the internet, so maybe the whole industry is a mess.  It's going to take a very strong showing though to beat out BP after the disaster this year.  I see Bank of America as a very strong contender as well, with their massive foreclosures and penchant for nickel and diming you to death with ridiculous fees.  I'm surprised that Lehman Brothers didn't make the cut despite their recent shenanigans, but perhaps they haven't directly effected enough individuals to gain wide notoriety. 

To be honest, many of these companies I haven't heard any major complaints against, so I assume they are also rans just thrown in there to fill up the bracket.  Really any large company is going to have it's fair share of complaints no matter how good a job it does.   I think it will boil down to just the few big favorites mentioned above. 

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Good Hair

At the urging of a friend, I watched the documentary Good Hair on Saturday and have to say it was quite eye opening.  I had no idea how much time, effort, and expense some women put into their hair.  It's produced and narrated by Chris Rock, so it's pretty entertaining.  Plus it features Nia Long who is pretty easy on the eyes.  It turned out to be pretty interesting.  The one side effect, though, is that I've had the Goodness song New Hair stuck in my head ever since.  So listen to this and do your best not to let it get stuck in your head too.


As I was waiting for my bus today I discovered that the Seattle Sounders season starts tonight as I witnessed the migration of friendless geeks who call themselves soccer fans heading south through downtown on their way to Seahawks Stadium.  As I witnessed this event, I was reminded that the majority of soccer fans in the area are pathetic posers, desperately jumping on the Sounders bandwagon while they are winning in a vain attempt to try to convince themselves that they are cool, not realizing that there are no cool soccer fans.  Go ahead and name one.  You can't because one doesn't exist. 

It really is sad, these poor souls have deluded themselves into thinking that since soccer is popular around the world, pretending to like it here will somehow imbue them with some sort of credibility with the citizens of the world.  Trends from other countries are quickly glommed onto here.  European fans like to wear scarves, so posers here have to have scarves too as if to say, "me too!"  Fans in some countries like to meet before the game and march into the stadium, so of course local fans saw that and quickly got together and said, "we've got to do that too if anybody is ever going to think we're cool!"  Some countries like to compose songs and chants for the game and when fans here got wind of that, they immediately said, "no one will ever take us seriously if we don't have songs and chants of our own!"  And if vuvuzelas and hooligans haven't reared their ugly heads around here yet, it's simply a matter of time.  It's as if there's some "soccer fan" checklist somewhere on the internet that every phoney here had to memorize.  And if you're one of those people that will seize any opportunity to lecture people that it's really called 'football' every time you hear either the word football or soccer, then you really need a good slapping.  You're not even man enough to earn a punch, all you get is a big slap. 

The level of phoniness and lack of originality is only eclipsed by the mindless drones in the cult of Apple that have to bow down to Steve Jobs 3 times a day while facing Silicon Valley.  Seattle soccer fans are rapidly closing the gap though.  I think it will just take 2 poor seasons to shake most of the posers off the bandwagon.  I don't know if I can last that long though.


Perhaps I've been spoiled by science fiction films, but I've been pushed to the point where I must demand that science start stepping up it's game and start inventing some of the technologies which will make my life easier that have been promised to me by the entertainment industry.  Specifically, get to work inventing some nanobots that will scurry around my house cleaning it up for me.  I'm envisioning some microscopic bots similar to the Scrubbing Bubbles mascot which will scuttle around cleaning my windows, counters, floors, etc while I kick back and watch some television.  These are way overdue.

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Grubstake 2.0

Today I decided to head down the street to Okinawa Teriyaki for lunch.  I've never been there before, but it's got decent reviews and I was craving some teriyaki.  Unfortunately after walking all the way down the hill, I found the place closed - a regular ghost town in there.  And it was only 1:50, what the hell?  I don't know if there's a remodel going on, or if word got out that I was on my way and they shut off the lights and hid, but I was disappointed. 

Quickly formulating an emergency contingency plan, I looked around and saw that I wasn't far from The Grubstake and started heading in that direction.  Both Kris and Brian had claimed that the burgers were actually sold at the fish bar, but since it was Kris and Brian I was skeptical.  I mean, who would trust either of those guys?  As luck would have it, however, they were correct and before long I was waiting on my order.

First of all, it took them about 10 minutes to make my burger.  I'm not sure why, the only possible explanation I can think of being that it came with jo jo's and maybe they didn't have any prepared.  But when you only have 45 minutes for lunch and you've just walked 10 minutes to get there and it will be another 10 minutes back, that's a significant delay.  Anyway, I always prefer jo jo's to frys since they have a more favorable potato to grease ratio and was please with the offering, except that they could have used an extra minute in the fryer as they weren't thoroughly cooked.  Still edible though.

What I first noticed about the burger is that it was huge.  Big enough that I had trouble fitting it in my mouth.  This was problematic because, in conjunction with the added level of difficulty of eating while walking back to my office (thanks to the 10 minute wait), the burger was impossible to keep together and not only were bits falling out all over the place, but the bun got completely shredded before it was half eaten.  I ordered the bacon cheese burger, and it came with an abundant amount of lettuce, tomato, and onion.  So much onion in fact that it brought a tear to my eye while eating it.  Either that or the 40 mph winds blowing in my face were causing my eyes to water, but I'd like to think it was a combination of the two.  In the future I would prefer less onion, or better yet, some sauteed onions.  But I digress.  As I was saying, with a salad inside the burger, I consider that my portion of vegetables for the day and think of it as health food.

The hamburger patty itself was very big, I think the sign said half a pound.  There was also ample bacon.  Still I found the whole thing a little dry, as Brian also mentioned, and I also think it could have used more cheese.  This is where some condiments would have come in handy, but since it came wrapped in paper and I feared that unwrapping it would result in a catastrophic mess, I didn't add any.  All it came with was mayo, and if you've ever seen The Whole Nine Yards, you know that mayo is unacceptable on a burger.  So should you order one of these burgers be sure to tell them to hold the mayo and then add some ketchup and mustard yourself.  And take about half the onions off. 

So, for $6.99 you get yourself well on your way to a coronary bypass with this big burger, but you'd probably be better off walking one pier over to Red Robin and grabbing something there, although the wait will be even longer and it will set you back a few more bucks.  If I worked closer I might return, but as it is I probably won't make that trip again for a mediocre burger.

Letters To The Editor

Last week, the editorial staff here at Craw Fu Inc received an email from concerned reader, The Chuckman.  Due to incompetence here at Craw Fu, the aforementioned email was deleted, however as luck would have it I still recall the basic point that was being made.  To the best of my recollection, The Chuckman - not known for his eloquence or verbosity - said, "why is some peoples still sayin' 'the machine' 'bouts answering machines?  Aint everybodys on voicemail now?" 

You make an excellent point Mr The Chuckman.  The answering machine is an antiquated relic that I believe is only still used by octogenarians and people who fear technology.  That pretty much leaves your grandma and Ted Kaczynski as the only people who should still be referring to 'the machine'.  As I see it, this presents us with two problems: 
1.  To what more deserving technology should the term 'the machine' now be applied, and
2.  What should be said instead of 'leave a message on the machine'?

To the first problem, based on my knowledge of science fiction films, I know that eventually 'the machine' will refer to the Terminator, and the things from the Matrix, and so on, however in the interim something else is needed.  I personally volunteer to take on the nickname 'the machine' for the good of society for the time being.  Feel free to begin using that immediately.  At which time a more impressive and worthy technology arises, I will freely relinquish that title.

The easy answer to the second problem is that people should just say, "leave me a voicemail."  And since many people already do and I don't have a better or even a more amusing suggesion, I'll leave it at that. 

If you have a question or comment that requires my special analysis or attention, feel free to contact me.  And if you don't want your name published on the internet, provide a suitable alias or one may be provided for you.