2016: A Package Odyssey (Day Two*)

Annnnd, the saga continues…

(thanks, David Luckie!)

Tuesday. It’s the same as Monday, but a day later. I actually had to go back to the post office this morning to send out a package (some new Mac power cables I had no use for as I don’t own a Mac), and ha, bloody ha-ha, the same guy at the inquiry window yesterday just so happened to be working the regular window I ended up at. Of course, he recognized me right away and as I step up to the counter with my little box of cables, I get a “Hey, how’s it going?” followed by a “Did the package arrive yet?”

PAUSE.

(Remember folks, this is the same guy who tells me yesterday that my package had been sent or was in the process of being sent BACK to where it came from. Now, unless the return trip was via TARDIS and my box whipped its way back from its original location to my doorstep within 24 hours (and it hasn’t, dear reader)… That would be a NO).

PLAY.

(Thanks, The Thing Legacy!)

I tell him “No, it hasn’t”, thinking maybe he’ll realize that’s a rather dumb question to ask. Let’s just say I was so annoyed that I didn’t realize I paid $7.05 to send a package Priority Mail instead of the under $4 it should have cost for First Class. Ugh. Well, dammit… GRRRRR!

Feh, at least it’ll get there faster. No wait, I just checked out of curiosity. It’ll be the same three days. Well, just… damn it all.

Okay, I think I need a drink now:

(Thanks, sambosez!)

I was too worn out from being up too late worrying about my backlog and other stuff to have my head explode like yesterday, but fair warning: Day 3 may be that day you all want to duck and cover into your bunkers with those old Civil Defense helmets on and a week’s supply of hardtack, beans and plenty of fresh drinking water.

Back in a bit…

*It’s actually day NINE of this nonsense, as the box hit the routing hub on the 11th.

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2016: A Package Odyssey (Day One)

holy-cats

So. How’s your Monday going? Good? Good.

Mine has been… interesting so far.

(Thanks, Sunshine Jack!)

Quiet. We’ll get back to you in a bit…

Anyway, this morning I popped up at 7:08am, made a pot of coffee and had a cup before popping out to the post office. Hey, I’d rather be home and dry writing up reviews, but you know how it goes when you need to go track down that thing you need to play games with so you can write those reviews, right?

Math time: rainy Monday + post office packed before 9am with cranky patrons + SUPER slow inquiry window = Yeah, it’s a Monday, all right. At 9:21am (I was fourth in line), the unusually nice guy at the window sees the tracking info on my phone that shows my refused box being refused at the hub station and my address and without missing a beat, says “Oh. It looks like someone pushed the wrong button on their tracker down at the other location, so your package got returned…”

Uh huh, I seeeee.

Wait, what?

Someone. Pushed. The. Wrong. Button…Continue reading

My Brain Wants to Play, But One Side Says “Nay”

itsamadhouse (Source: lifesuxx)

Oh, bother. I’ve been somewhat good for a while, trying to not explode into a sarcastic ball of caffeinated noise bouncing around the room ranting about all sorts of stuff. It’s hard to write about entertainment you like when the real world is becoming a lot less entertaining and a lot more unlikable. We may be in the process of having Max Shreck voted into office by a bunch of goggle-eyed TV-raised rubes who believe that well-clothed celebrity charlatan with the failed businesses who also took money from people who paid to attend a “university” with his name on it (just because it had his name on it) is someone who can “get the job done” and who just might get the job done. Well, if that “job” in question is traveling backwards in time to a few lousy places in history.

Ugh. Yep, here comes the Howling Man…

(Thanks, N0stril!)

Anyway, all that and more have been rattling around in my busy little head of late and that rattling is getting louder. While I deal with that noise, I’m going to be nice and stick to writing more about stuff I like primarily as a means of keeping me distracted while I deal with what’s turning into a weirder year than even I expected. Back in a bit – I have a ton of notes and press kits that I’ve been going over this past week to keep me busy, but I could use a nice adult beverage and an ear to bend.

Ziegfeld Fall-ies: “Progress!”: Or Why We Can’t Have (and Keep) Nice Things

Ziegfeld Interior 

So, the famed Ziegfeld Theater is closing soon. Hearing this news earlier did not make my day go any better, folks.

Let’s see now: closing the only remaining theater in NYC with a 70mm screen? BAD IDEA. Turning that theater into a stupid “special events” hall when there are plenty of spaces already? WORSE idea. I’m so annoyed at this I can’t even muster up the energy to rant and spill some history on you guys and gals. Between this news and the recent demises of the big Toys ‘R Us in Times Square, FAO Schwarz further uptown, and the slowly fading actual deli scene this city is dying the lonely death of a thousand cuts in favor of becoming more of a dead-eyed strip mall packed with tourists who come here just to go to higher priced versions of what they already have in their states.

Yeah, yeah – big movies aren’t making as much money as online streaming services generate and in general, shopping is “easier” when you click away and get no exercise as a trade off for free shipping (unless you order too close to Christmas because you think Santa Claus is real and that box will pop up right on time. HA.). But both retail space and big screen movie houses are needed just because not everything looks good on a damned mobile screen or computer monitor, multiplexes lose personality (and hearing films through poorly constructed walls sucks) and hell, it’s just BETTER to see and touch something you want to buy up close and personal. Take a picture, it’ll last longer, indeed. Funny, but not funny – Bow Tie Cinemas also owned the Loews theater near me that got turned into a totally useless Marshall’s that’s a grand, laughable waste of space inside which always looks as if it’s never been cleaned properly.

If I Had a Hammer (I’d Hit Myself On the Head) Redux

Feh. This past week or so has been a bit too insane partially thanks to more apartment repairs disrupting the daily routine. I didn’t sleep at all Monday night thanks to moving stuff around the apartment (and writing up a game review), so I was passed out by noon Tuesday with a Blu-Ray playing (yes, you should buy this) and a cup of coffee I somehow managed not to spill a drop of. It’s pretty hilarious to wake up all bleary-eyed with a cup of coffee in your hand a guy working on your wall about ten feet away and a subtitled Japanese movie playing. I think the poor plasterer was trying to figure out if I spoke the language or how I could watch a movie with my eyes closed, but I like to confuse people whenever I can. Mission accomplished!

Well, not really…

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FedEx Gets To Be The Bad Guy… And Almost Succeeds

TMNT Almost Shredder 001 (Custom) 

Yikes. I think FedEx hates me. Or at least stuff they need to deliver safely. Anyway, that’s the box I got from a few days back above, so I guess someone at the company is still mad at me for yelling at a driver who tried to deliver a box of stuff a few weeks back after 10pm on a Friday with not so much as a courteous phone call beforehand to say a VERY after hours delivery was coming. Why take someone’s phone number and stick it on the label if it’s not going to be used? Hey, you’d be as cranky as I was when you have the occasional dope who rings the doorbell downstairs claiming to have a package when they’re just trying to gain entry into the building. Hell, I didn’t even think FedEx or UPS delivered after 9pm except for holidays when delivery times are all over the map and it’s expected that stuff said to arrive in a day shows up late in that day.

Anyway, did the contents of that beat to hell box survive the trip? That would be telling, but let’s just say I was pleasantly surprised. But FedEx needs its drivers to shape up and knock it off with the box-busting handling.

#TBT: Smart Advice For Stupid People, Kubrick Edition

(Thanks, cladegaard!)
 

It may be hard to swallow for some of you out there, but here’s an uncomfortable (and thankfully, verifiable) fact: “American” isn’t a language. Never was, never will be. I guess some people into speaking their minds at every opportunity in front of a camera won’t ever grasp that being the loudest person in a room doesn’t make you at all correct in what you say. It’s amazing that some continue to get away with this stuff and flock in the irate, gullible sheep because of the VERY oddball belief that someone who has strong convictions about stuff means they’re somehow immune to being dead wrong every time they open their mouths. Of course, if those strong beliefs go against yours, that person is somehow an idiot. Even if they know more and are dead-on correct, too many out there won’t open their brains to fresh ideas because of fear and plain old ignorance.

If you’re somewhat cranky about that news flash above, go find someone who still believes without a shred of doubt (and less proof) that the earth is flat, the Matrix is real, or that Santa Claus isn’t a relative or very good friend running up his or her credit cards (or paying in cash if they have it handy). Holding onto as many untruths as possible as one ages only keeps the crap train alive too long and makes us less smart about things we need to let die off gracefully. Pulling the plug on the old ways is hard, yes. But that necessary mercy killing of dated thinking will surprise you in how it unlocks doors you’ve never even seen in that brain-shaped house in your head.

Also, regarding refugees seeking asylum: Anyone on the “Send ’em back so they can fight!” or other “not in my backyard!” tip should take those words and apply them to the Mayflower landing as seen from the perspective of the natives in that era. The world would most certainly be a far different place if that particular boat full of immigrants was turned away in anger, ladies and gents. Nope, I haven’t a hearty clue or a handy solution to this particular (but not *new* at all) problem other than to say ignoring or flat out erasing history has always been mankind’s main folly and we seem to never want to learn how not to dig these ruts in the first place.

Class dismissed.

The Martian Trailer: Reading Is Fundamental. The Internet is NOT.

While this gorgeous trailer for Ridley Scott’s upcoming film based Andy Weir’s bestselling novel The Martian looks fantastic, it seems that there’s some internet outrage over the trailer spoiling the entire film by looking as if it plays out the entire plot in three minutes. It doesn’t. I haven’t even read the book yet but have talked to two people who have and as they’re they types who don’t go online and babble about what’s not in that trailer, I’m told that there’s a good deal you don’t see. Which makes perfect sense, mind you. Yes, movie trailers tend to be a bit too dumbed down in many cases and yes, there are films where you see pretty much everything you need to well before it hits theaters.

The “problem” with The Martian trailer is all that pent up anger about other film’s spoiler packed teases seems to have spilled over at just the wrong time. The easy way to avoid ANY spoilers to films you may be interested in is not to watch them, period. Of course, if you want NO spoilers at all, don’t even read the book the film is based on and go in cold as Mars after sunset. I bet you’ll enjoy the hell out of that film and want to go buy the book after you leave the theater. Also, stay OFF message boards and other sites where people waste time opining away based on their lack of information, unwillingness to learn any new information and tendency to argue to the death the most ill-informed and idiotic points easily quashed by actual facts. Your sanity will thank you kindly and you’ll be able to go about your day with less stress.

Case closed and you’re welcome.

On Watching Paint Dry And Fortune Telling That Works

Status

Well, the painter showed up this morning at 11:05, worked for eighteen minutes and left for lunch at 11:23 saying she’d be back to put down a second coat. That made me laugh because I was surprised the wall was even getting a second coat. I guess she had to put in those hours this week (or eighteen minutes followed by however long it took that second coat to be done. To my surprise, she actually did a decent above the call job for around here, covering much more than the area that was “repaired” on Friday. The whole wall and part of the other side was done (*shocking!*) and while that made me smile, I’m figuring it’ll be around three months or so when I’ll be having a serious case of deja vu.

You see, when I popped out of bed this morning I decided to carefully look at the plaster job from Friday that was now perfectly dry. Well, dry save for two streaks that signify water was still seeping into the wall. Argh. I have a photo here of the “vampire marks”, but can’t seem to locate my camera’s USB cable (all that moving stuff around and it’s been mislaid). My fortune telling skills (which aren’t real and not needed in any case) show that I’ll be placing a call soon to let the idiots in the office know that they’ve put another plastic bandage on a raging tumor. Fixing the root cause of all the trouble makes more sense (and costs less in the long run). But they prefer to think I’m a dope who doesn’t know and that them just showing up to do their minimalist wall-work on a semi-regular basis is all fine and dandy. You’d figure this would have happened some 20+ years back when there was a small flood here that required the first wall replacement, right?

Anyway, the painter popped back around 12:35 or so and I lost a bet with myself that she’d take lunch until 1pm. Anyway, a few minutes of mucking around outside the door and she came in to finish the job. That second coat went up in much less time and I was signing some paperwork by 12:55 with full realization that she or someone else would be back here before summer was over. Well, the ceilings here still need to be busted into for repairs in a few places so it may be a case of planned serendipity when all is said and done. Back in a bit. I woke up too early thinking the painter would be here at 8am and I need to get out of here and get some air, smacking myself in the forehead as i stroll around outside. Fresh coat of paint aside, it’s still a Monday to deal with (and a busy week ahead)…

When They Gave My Wall A Hip (And Other Not Tall At All Tales)

Well, at least I got to have a decent breakfast today. To wit:

Breakfast Not so hot deux 

Repair-wise, it was the predictable comedy of errors without the Greek chorus. Two plumbers (well, one plumber and one assistant) popped up at about 8:15 to reattach the legs to the sink and did so in a speedy six minutes. The not so funny thing was they were also supposed to fix the loose faucet that the previous plumbers removed and put back badly when they took the entire sink out and replaced it, “forgetting” to reattach the legs in the process. They were in the process of scooting away down the hall when I decided to check their work and found the faucet still loose. When they popped back in, one of them showed me the work order that only mentioned the leg job, which definitely didn’t make me feel any better. I noted that the inspector who was here two days back said the loose faucet would also be fixed and that years back the plumbers and other maintenance guys would go out of their way to double check what they worked on and would often mention they did a bit of extra work since they were already tinkering away down there. Not that this was “extra” work, mind you.

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