Thursday, April 28, 2011

No Time HNT

OK, I didn't realize how busy I was going to be this week. I'm cheating--reposting a pick from a little over a year ago. I'm sure it was taken while I was busy with a symphony performance, but I can guarantee that I wasn't as busy as I am this week. I'm drafting this during the mid-afternoon on Tuesday, which is unheard of from me. Online time on Wednesday won't be possible, and it'll be pretty difficult on Thursday as well.

So carry on without me. Hopefully I can stop by over the weekend. In the meantime, I'll be busy building sets, inventorying props and costumes, focusing and aiming lights, writing light cues, setting up the orchestra, meeting and greeting the principal performers, running around buying make-up, and maybe getting to sit down on occasion. It's times like this when I wish I had a wife waiting for me at home to do my laundry...

"I do my own thing when the phone rings
Maybe I'll answer, maybe I'm busy
I want some next sh*t
I got connections
Only speak to people I wanna speak to
Sophisticated, fokken larney
Nutella on my sarmie
Fokken dik gesmeer, bra

Wasn't always a rich bitch
Used to be a poor girl
Ag, shame, die arme meisie
Ek wassie wysie

To all my means sir
In a tart situation
Getting closer to god
Do you hear that?
I flow from the heart
F*ck the upperclass
Versigtig, ek's nog steeds fokken giftig
Yo, f*ck a rich bitch"

Blurb from the song: "Rich Bitch" by Die Antwoord

Had to get "...the Other HNT" up earlier than usual too, but people were good at getting pics to me. Go say hi, leave some comments, and go ogle your fellow HNTers! NSFW, as usual.

Friday, April 22, 2011

I survived!

Some thoughts and observations...
  • Do you think that I'd get the male nurse? Nope. The matronly, experienced nurse? Nope. I get the 20-something hottie that I'm sure starts her day at the gym at 5:00AM, and is cheery, perky and gorgeous by 8:00AM every day.
  • And you know what? It didn't bother me in the least. As BFD eloquently observed, I was "just another old man and his butt..."
  • They ought to give you a teddy bear, or something else to squeeze. There's nothing to do with your arms when you're in the "position". If phones would have been allowed, I would have live-texted some of you!
  • A little foreplay would have gone a long ways. All I got was, "I'm going to touch you now", and wham, bam, he's in. Girls, you agree, right?
  • Much to my mother's relief, her boy is definitely not gay boy material.
  • I have a new-found awe for those of you who enjoy anal sex, or putting larger things up there. This probe was about the width of the doctor's little finger, but it felt like a bowling ball. I'm not sure how you people do it!
  • I'll spare you the details of the preparation for the 18 hours beforehand, but honestly, that was worse than the procedure itself.
So what came of all this? I got a clean bill of health (as well as a clean colon!). Nothing stared back at him, and even better, nothing on the walls that needed to be plucked and sampled! No need for the claw! Colon cancer does not seem to be interested in me at this time!
Happy Earth Day!
Happy Easter! We're doing the family Easter/birthday thing this Sunday. Brunch in the morning, and dinner at Mom's. Maybe sleigh rides this year, too!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Cartman HNT

"Have you had a screening for colon cancer?" I could have gone the rest of the day without hearing that phrase. That was about six weeks ago. Sadly, the time has arrived. I'm going to be the recipient of a flexible sigmoidoscopy. I can't help but conjure visions of Cartman and the aliens.

I didn't get to schedule when this would happen. I was sort of at the mercy of the doctor's office, and when they could do it. Because the sterilization/cleaning solution is tremendously costly, and this isn't a procedure that they do on a routine basis, I had to wait until there was a group of us ready. Oh, boy! It'll be like our own little club! This thrills me to no end, as you can imagine. Though I did find some reassurance in the fact that: 1)--they sterilize/clean the equipment between patients, and 2)--they only do one patient/day.

I should probably be thankful that this is something that I'm getting taken care of now, rather than at a point where it's a necessity. What they'll be doing is looking for any polyps or other growths or damage. They'll be inserting something that looks like this thing on the right up my wazoo to "take samples" of anything that looks out of the ordinary. Hopefully they won't find any clumps of gerbil hair or things like that. Of course I have to fast and cleanse and prepare ahead of time so that it's clear sailing for them when they go looking around in there. I'm all sorts of excited about that...

The fun part of all this? They don't put you under for this particular procedure. I'll be wide awake to experience the full humiliation and embarrassment. Of course, women have been subjecting themselves to this sort of thing since they were teens, so I doubt I'll get any sort of sympathy there... Anyway, depending upon where you are and when you're stopping by here, I'll be in various phases of things. If you're one of the early posters from Australia, I'll be in the tummy-rumbling phase, as the stool softeners do their thing and start kicking my ass. If you're one of the Wednesday night posters, I'll most likely be in the bathroom when you stop by. I plan to just bring a small table for the laptop in there and camp out. If you're one of the Europeans posting first thing in your morning, I'll still be there. East Coasters posting when you get up in the morning, I'll be up too, giving myself one of two enemas to flush things out. The rest of you who post later on Thursday--I'll be at home, recuperating. Probably curled up in a ball. Under a blanket. In the dark...

So to end this, I should probably post a picture. I'll bet you can't imagine what it will be....

Surprise! This is the scratch on my face that I awoke to on Monday morning. No idea how I got it, or when. Try to ignore the stray hair--obviously I can't shave over that area, but I had no idea that it was sticking out like that until I took the picture. I hope I've somehow taken your mind off the image that I'm getting probed. I just hope I remember to wear clean underwear!

No Mystery Guest this week. No one lined up, and I am too far neck-deep in opera stuff to go recruiting. It's going to be the same story for the next couple of weeks, so if you're interested in being the MG, get in touch with me, K?
Another fine week over at "...the Other HNT". Be sure to see your fellow HNTers in their glory. The guys stepped it up this week, too! NSFW, as usual!
As mentioned, the opera stuff is keeping me busy. The good news--nothing really bad has cropped up, but we're a little behind where I'd like to be. The bad news--there's still plenty of time for things to get hinky. But all in all, things are running somewhat smoothly at the moment. Next week is when all the pieces start falling into place for real, so we'll see how that goes...
An update on Rachel and the custody fight over her grandson. His mother (her daughter) and father are going to be in mediation soon. The attorney that she's retained is pretty confident that she'll be able to get full custody. A half dozen family battery complaints against him over the past couple of years will most likely be his downfall. She didn't divulge exactly how many of you helped, or to what degree, but she said she was blown away by the support. You guys are alright!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Quick Check-In

Just popping on here to say that I won't be popping on much over the next 3 weeks. At least not nearly as much as I'd like. Maybe I'll pick some old posts and recycle them.

The good news is that the opera is coming along fairly well, in spite of some definite questions. But gosh, my free time has totally dried up! And if that wasn't bad enough, my "procedure" is scheduled for Thursday, which means Wednesday afternoon/evening will be spent "preparing". I'm so excited.

I might be making a quick road trip to Salt Lake City next week to pick up some costumes, primarily to save on shipping costs. Though, with the cost of gas these days, that might not really be as cost effective as we'd like it to be. All in all, though, things seem to be working well.

Other than that...oh--thank you to all of you for your birthday wishes! Especially to those of you who went the extra bit to do it as a post! I love birthday HNTs!

As for my birthday date--it was lovely! A nice dinner, great conversation (politics, even!), shared dessert (huckleberry cheesecake). I also got a nice gift, too! Best part--she paid for everything. After all, it was MY birthday! I LOVE going out to dinner with Mom!

Go buy Sadie's book!

Go check out the latest adventures of the OsShirt!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

A Year Older HNT

I turn 54 on Friday.
What's happened since my last birthday?
The Deepwater Horizon oil well exploded in Gulf of Mexico, killing 11 people, and spewing millions of gallons of oil into the Gulf for weeks.

Spain wins the World Cup.

Researchers trap 38 antihydrogen atoms for 1/6 of a second, marking the first time humans have trapped antimatter.

Gary Coleman died.

General upscaling of unrest in Middle East.

Phain's apartment burned to the ground.

My "neighborhood" McDonald's was torn down. Rebuilt and open within 2 months.

Thirty-three Chilean miners rescued after 69 days trapped underground.

My BIL Ray died.

Joined a new band.

The old band had its second gig in 3 years.

My car died.

Bought a new car.

Saw lots of old faces at my 35-year HS reunion.

Shattered the touchscreen on my Droid.

My diabetes stayed pretty much in check.

Moose stayed with me for a few days (forcing me to powerclean my apartment).

Met up with fellow bloggers in NY, as well as meeting two here at home, and driving to Missoula to meet Her Gucciness!

The OsShirt headed across the big pond.

MTV announces plans for new episodes of "Beavis and Butt-head"!

My dad died.

The Griz broke my heart, both by losing to the Bobkittens, and by not making the playoffs for the first time in almost two decades.

The Fighting Saints won their 6th NAIA National Championship in 10 years.

Bought new 42" HDTV.

Earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disasters all strike Japan. Godzilla was nowhere to be found.

Celebrated 6 years of blogging.

Bought new 13" MacBook Pro.
Looking at this picture, I can tell that I've aged in the past year. I wonder what the next 12 months have in store for me...

"You have a right to experiment with your life. You will make mistakes. And they are right too." ~Anais Nin

Today's mystery guest just released an eBook about her open marriage. This week marks the end of her participation in HNT. She bids you all a sweet and sexie adieu.

She'll be revealed Thursday afternoon, so you can stop by her place and buy her book (15% cheaper than Amazon!). Of course, you could go to that right now if you know already!
Of course, this week's MG is Sexie Sadie! Click on the link, and buy her ebook. Not available on Amazon yet, and 15% cheaper than it will be when it is! We're gonna miss her around here...

We continue to get great submissions for "...the Other HNT". Go see what your fellow HNTers are up to, and leave them some comment lovin'! Quite NSFW this week.
The latest adventure of the OsShirt was posted earlier this week. Go check up on the luckiest shirt on earth!
Opera update -- As anticipated, the amount of work needing to be accomplished increases as the amount of time to do it in decreases. Stress levels aren't on overload yet, and some of the production stuff is actually coming together quite nicely. Of course, if money weren't a concern, things would fall into place much more easily. It's the final little pieces that need to come together that are a bit of a concern. But we're not terribly worried...
In case anyone missed it at the top...Friday is my birthday! And I have a date!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Masters 'n Stuff

Remember how your mom always told you how important it was to always wear clean underwear, because you never know when you might be in an accident? Sorta the same thing at the Masters--you never know when the tournament leader might duck hook a tee shot 50 yards off course and land between you and the neighbor's place!
I have to admit, I felt sorry for Rory McIlroy after that shot. Not because 98% of the world's golfers have done the exact same thing, but because none of us have had millions of people across the globe watching it as it happens!
I was actually glad to see Tiger make a run of it on Friday. Just as happy to see him botch it up over the weekend. He really could have (should have?) won it again...
"Delta Force" is on at the moment on Encore. It's like an addiction or something. Gotta watch it!
I was doing some housecleaning on this site over the weekend, and spent a great deal of time on the blogpage I made up for the 3rd anniversary of HNT. I had forgotten how well it turned out, then dawned on me that many of you have probably never been over there to take a look. You should go do that now. See what/who got this whole thing started in the early days. There might even be a name or two in the sidebar that still HNT/OHNT on occasion! I certainly miss those people!
Opera stuff really cranks up this week. Lots of phone calls and emails to deal with, schedules to confirm, problems to resolve. I hope I can get some sleep at night!
Still haven't seen a great deal of Spring around here yet. Snow's all gone, and the temps are s l o w l y rising, but we haven't seen a real sunny day yet. But it feels like it might be just around the corner...
In case you missed the hints in last week's HNT, Friday is my birthday. Just sayin'...

Thursday, April 07, 2011

The Masters HNT

As mentioned at the first of the's Masters week! Unless you're a golfer, you probably can't appreciate the magic that is found at Augusta National Golf Course. The history. The tradition. The unparalleled beauty that is found on no other course in the world.

If you've been around this site for any length of time, you know that golf has always been a major force in the family. Everyone in the family plays. From my grandparents all the way down to my nieces and nephew. Even the BILs all play. My dad's father was a pro; his uncles were state amateur champions. BIL2 was a teaching pro at the country club. Mom's parents built the only residence on that same course. It's in our blood.

Some portion of the Masters is generally played on my birthday, meaning that we'd do the family bday thing, and sit around the TV to watch the final round. Didn't matter who was in contention. Didn't matter what the weather was like outside. All available TVs were tuned in on the beauty and spectacle of the tournament. And we were all there. Until something happened in the early-90s...

One of the things that makes the Masters special is that most people will never be able to set foot on the course. There is a very small membership at the course, and while membership costs are kept private, you can bet that they are well into the 5-digit, if not 6-digit dollar figure. There are no tickets available to watch this tournament available to the public. It's got a waiting list that has been full since 1971 to get daily passes. They are coveted more than life itself. Corporations and sponsors get an allotment, but those are spoken for years in advance. There is a lottery for tickets to the practice rounds, but there are thousands upon thousands of entries for a very limited number of tickets, so chances are slim to none of ever getting one.

As mentioned above, BIL2 was the teaching pro at the country club here. Meaning he possessed a Class A PGA card. He caught wind of the fact that any PGA member with a Class A card simply has to walk up to the front gate, show their card and ID, and walk in. No tickets, no reservations, no advance warning--nothing! Park your car and walk in. That's it. Once he found out about this, our family ritual of watching the Masters together went out the window. He would meet up with other golf pro friends and spend the weekend (or longer) walking amongst the hills and pines and dogwoods and azaleas. We caught him on TV a couple of times over the years, and he always would call on Sunday, knowing we were all watching. I always told him that if he respected me as a BIL, he'd find a way to take me one year for my birthday present. The best I could ever get out of him was a new golf towel from the pro shop.

This year, Ray won't be with us to watch the Masters, but for different reasons. And I won't be getting a new towel for my birthday. But we'll get together and watch, and we'll tell stories about seeing him behind the 16th tee that one year, and we'll all get the winter blues shaken out and get excited about playing golf up here once again. It's going to be bittersweet. The least I could do is get out on the balcony and start working on my putting game again. It's the one part of my game that I think I outshined him...

And on a hopefully brighter note--the Masters has announced this week that a very limited number of daily passes to the Masters 2012 will be made available to the general public by lottery. Needless to say, I've already applied for a pair. Hopefully Ray has made nice with the golf gods and can send some luck my way. It would be so much cooler to walk in and buy my own towel from the pro shop!
“We start to realize that there are anodynes in life that help us through the day. I don't care if it's a walk in the park, a look out the window, a good bubble bath - whatever. Even a meal you like, or a friend you want to call. That helps us solve all this stuff in our head.”

-Al Pacino

Stop by on Thursday to see who our Mystery bubbly babe is!
This week's bubbly butt belongs to suburbanslut. Go check out her pinkness!

A good selection of HNTers over at "...the Other HNT", as usual! NSFW, but stop by when you get a chance and leave some comments!
This month is going to kick my butt. Somewhat anticipated, but not to the degree that it's already happening. I'm the production manager of this upcoming opera, and I'm finding that many balls have been dropped. In some cases, not even picked up yet. Which means that I now get to be the hard ass. Kicking butt, chewing ass, cracking the whip. For some of you, that probably sounds like a great way to spend a Saturday night. For me, however...I've got my work cut out for me. I have no doubt that things will be fine, but more work than it needs to be at the moment. I'm sure I'll have all sorts of stories to tell!

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

In the style of Mr. Goldberg...

Rube Goldberg was an American cartoonist, sculptor, author, engineer, and inventor. Goldberg is best known for a series of popular cartoons he created depicting complex devices that perform simple tasks in indirect, convoluted ways—now known as Rube Goldberg machines. In the spirit of Mr. Goldberg, take a look at this video. Some people just have WAY too much time on their hands! (by the way--I saw this on One Cool Thing a Day. A site that you really need to check out on a daily basis!)

Monday, April 04, 2011

Gosh, it's April!

It's Master's Week here in America. To me, this is the real beginning of Spring. The dogwood and azaleas are in bloom, and the most highly worshiped golf course in the world looks her best. Photos can never do her justice, but I love this one. The 18th fairway, coming up to the clubhouse. Not a view that is often seen, but still gives a glimpse of what the rest of the course has to offer. Hopefully I'll be able to get other pictures up this week. After a long, long winter, I'm now almost in Heaven!
I saw the latest commercial for Foster Grant sunglasses (and now reading glasses!) featuring Raquel Welch. Good lord, the woman is 70 years old! Seventy! To are Al Pacino, Alex Trebek, Bobby Goldsboro (!!!), Faye Dunaway, Herbie Hancock (really?), James Brolin, Joan Baez, Mariette Hartley, Nancy Sinatra, Neil Diamond, Nick Nolte, Patrick Stewart, Pelé, Ringo Starr, Sam Waterston, Tom Jones, Valerie Harper and Wilson Pickett (only 70??). With the possible exceptions of James Brolin and Patrick Stewart, none of them has held up as well as Raquel!! This picture is from less than 6 months ago!
I lamented the demise of Limewire a few months ago. A couple of you mentioned using BitTorrent or similar software. I'd known about BT, but was primarily disappointed in the sites that required some sort of membership--some paid, some free. A few days ago, I decided to investigate a little more. Should have done this long, long ago! Best of all, I found that there's plenty of free stuff out there! While I still prefer the way that Limewire allowed you to search for a single song/file, I've gone nuts with downloading gigabytes worth of full catalogs of a variety of things. My big scores so far: Chicago 22 - Stone of Sisyphus (an unreleased album by Chicago from the early 90s. Oh, hell. Just read that it was finally released in 2008 and I didn't know about it!), and 19GB of audio and video of the top DCI corps, going back as far as the mid-70s! Truly a geeky thing, thank you. Still a bit top-heavy and overkill for some things, but at the moment, I'm happy to put up with it!
For the second time since the first of the year, I have to comment about the current political follies in the MT state legislature. Before I continue, let me just say that there's no way I could be a legislator. Or Congressman. Or even a city councilman. You just can't please everyone. But some of these people can't please anyone! The circus is thankfully winding down, though.

I generally don't consider myself as a member of either political party, but I have to say, the Republicans have wasted this entire session. Even Gucci would shake her head at what they've been trying to do! They claim that the "mandate of the people" was to create jobs and cut spending. With new-found majorities in both houses, they spent most of the first half of the session trying to pass ridiculous bills, trying to repeal the will of the people (medical marijuana) and make wholesale cuts to education, social services and state employees. They've been spouting off their "anti-federal" stance, rejecting a number of federal grants and programs not on their merits, but simply because they don't want the federal government intruding on what they perceive as "state's rights".

Then I read in today's paper that some of the same Montana lawmakers who deride government spending and voted to reject millions of dollars in federal money have received thousands of dollars of federal agricultural subsidies for their farm and ranch operations. And many of those lawmakers have voted to cut funding for programs that help the poorest Montanans, including food, prescription drug and energy bill assistance. The top five recipients accepted more than $600,000 in agricultural subsidies from 1995 to 2009, the report said. That’s more than the $564,000 an average Montana household earned through the same period, according to U.S. Census Bureau data. I'll be the first to admit that I know virtually nothing on how farm subsidies work, but they've been important in the past, and there's certainly misuse of it, like any other program. But it seems highly hypocritical that they can reject federal funds on one hand, while personally grabbing for more with the other. Can't wait to see how this plays out!

On a saner front--the Democratic governor has already told the Legislature that he plans to veto the Republican's budget as soon as it hits his desk, unless there's some significant changes to it before then. Whew! Hopefully he'll be as logical on a number of other bills that pass in front of him!
And since I'm waxing poetic on politics... I've mentioned in the past that I listen to Rush (no, not them...) on the way to work every day. Only for the humor I find in his rants. And now I find myself listening to other conservative radio shows for the same reason. I rarely listen to music in my car anymore! While Rush is a blowhard, he's hardly the kookiest of the bunch. That title would have to be handed to Michael Savage. Have you ever listened to this guy? An absolute nutjob! Followed closely by Rush and Laura Ingraham. They all remind me of that kid in third grade who always had to be right, and would sink their teeth into a minute part of an argument, and chew it to death, just to make themselves appear right. These guys will grasp any straw and try to make it "newsworthy". It's a laugh a minute! Especially Savage. An extreme conservative who broadcasts out of San Francisco??? That's got to be tough!