Sunday, July 1, 2007

Gas Man

There are a lot of warnings printed on things these days. Some are common sense, while others are helpful reminders - things like "Do not feed the alligators" and "Remove infant before folding for storage."

You can bet someone did whatever the warning says not to do. Kind of like the guy I saw at the gas station last night.

He started by filling up a two gallon container right on the bed of his still running truck. Then he moved the nozzle to the truck's tank, clicked the hold-open latch, and got back in and sat down on the passenger's side of his vehicle. He rustled through the glove box for a minute.

Then, with the nozzle still pumping gas and the truck still idling, he walked into the convenience store.

Let's count the unheeded warnings (that were clearly posted on the gas pump):

1. Fill portable containers on the ground
2. Turn off engine
3. Remain outside vehicle
4. Stay at pump while fueling

All he needed to do was light up a cigarette and he would have been a perfect 5 for 5.

Maybe he did. I didn't stick around to see the rest.

Those warnings are probably there for a reason, and the Corsica and I weren't interested in witnessing what was about to happen.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Posts Update VI

It's been a while. Many things that have happened lately are updates of previous items...

No Checks In The Mail
The price of mailing a first class one ounce letter has just gone up to 41 cents. There is no better time to start paying bills online.

The Postal Service also introduced a "forever stamp" - one that costs 41 cents now but will be considered valid even after a future rate increase. I would love to test out the actual foreverness of this item. But since I have decided to stop funding the USPS, I'll have to rely on someone else to let me know if that stamp is sufficient postage in 2037.

The Replacements
I recently took the Corsica to get inspected. I got a mid-morning call from the mechanic. He said that he was finished and the car was ready to be picked up - it passed with flying colors. No replacement necessary. Roll on, powder blue Chevy.

Lawn Care
I would imagine that if you live in a house overlooking a golf course you might expect to get some hacker's stray golf ball in your yard every now and then. To be honest, I've been the guy searching near someone's deck/landscaping/sprinkler after an errant shot once or twice.

I don't live on a golf course, though - I live three streets away from a bowling alley. Which may explain why I found half a bowling ball in my side yard by the driveway. I'm not kidding. Half. Now that's an errant shot.

Kennywood's Open
Seriously, Kennywood is open daily for the 2007 season as of May 16th. Theme days begin May 27th. And yes, your zipper is down.

Again With The Chocolate Lasagna?
As of right now, there are 38 comments on the Chocolate Lasagna post. And only three of them are from people related to me. Folks I don't know from all over the country are visiting and sharing their frustration over the disappeared dessert. Also, someone from Darden Restaurants (the company that owns and operates Olive Garden) visited this post. We're getting the message across to the people in charge! Don't stop the fight! Or whatever it is we're doing!

Crazy Running Lady
In a rare and fortunate turn of events, I was able to snap a picture of the elusive Crazy Running Lady. Blouse, dress, handbag and all.

She must have come out of her winter hiding place. Or maybe she circled the entire globe and is back where she started.

Two Poles And A Mound Of Dirt
No work has been done on either pole or the mound of dirt in my front yard. The only thing different is that they have been joined by a little flag marking the underground natural gas line. Sounds like we could be in for some fun.

The Accused
Apparently my wife's chat with the police officer worked. About two weeks after being charged with parking in a restricted area, I received another piece of mail from the Magisterial District Judge. This one was a Notice of Withdrawal of Charges against me and my car. It's like nothing ever happened.

Change Of Plans
We were approved for the insurance policy despite my incident on testing day. Since there was such a clamoring for a picture after the original post, I have finally decided to upload one. Even the untrained eye can see that the sarcastic section occupies by far the largest piece of my cerebral tissue. Next is the thinking about cookies part.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Auto Servi6e

There is a nondescript building just off of Route 51 on my way to work. It's kind of a run down little place, with a couple of garage doors and a bunch of cars parked out front. It could be just another used car dealership like many others along the same stretch.

But it isn't. In fact, until recently, I had no idea what it really was. Apparently no one else knew either. So the owners decided to share with us what happens in their place of business.

Not with a big lighted sign or anything like that. No, that would be too ordinary. Instead, they decided to spray paint directly on the shingles of the building's overhang.



AUTO SERVI6E it now says. Whatever that is.

There are many things wrong with this situation. The worst of which is probably the decision to spray paint three foot tall words on your building without being sure how to spell both of them.

Or the decision to leave your attempt on there for a year.

I'm all for the private mechanic. With the number of car dealers and chains around town, it must be difficult to make it in this day and age as a small time auto repair business. But I'm pretty sure this spray paint situation isn't helping things. People expect a little attention to detail when entrusting someone to work on their ride. You've got to keep part numbers, makes, models, and invoices correct.

This is not a good advertisement for the quality of work that goes on inside this building. Or maybe it is. I know that I'll never take the Corsi6a there.

Saturday, January 6, 2007

Bill's Family

Bill Cowher resigned as coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers yesterday. He decided to skip the last year his contract with the team so that he can spend some more time with his family.

That choice also means he will be skipping a reported $4.5 million in salary. That's a lot.

Many have seen this coming, though. He bought a new home (estate, actually) in North Carolina after last year's Super Bowl win. He didn't agree to a contract extension after discussions with the Steelers last summer. He was a little less intense on the sidelines last season.

Some people have speculated that Bill's wife, Kaye, is the real decision maker in the family. They think that she was in charge of the home purchase and of Bill choosing to resign. I think that if she had anything to do with that sweater he was wearing during his last press conference, she should be relieved of her decision making duties immediately.

I'll tell you who had nothing to do with this decision - Bill's three daughters. Two of them attend Princeton University and the youngest is a sophomore in high school. I feel like this whole thing is a lot of pressure for those kids. I mean, he's basically pointing to them as the public reason for quitting one of the best coaching jobs in the NFL. Do you really think they want him there constantly? And visiting them at college? How long before he hears one of them politely ask him to "go back to work" and "get out of my business"?

They don't want you hanging around the house all the time, Bill. They don't care that you are forfeiting $4.5 mil to watch some girls high school basketball games. Find something to do.

Everyone knows that Bill's family is not the real reason he resigned. The talk is that he will sit out this year and then return to coaching for a much higher salary. The family excuse was just floated out there so that Steelers fans couldn't get too angry. How can you say bad things about a guy who is taking some time off to spend with his kids? Even though 2/3 of them are already in college 450 miles away...

Just wait until he comes back next year to coach the Cleveland Browns. Then you'll hear some bad things.

And then it will all make $en$e.

Especially for the Cowher girls. They can't wait.