Friday, December 19, 2003

Thursday, December 18, 2003

Design Work

I posted some of my design work on the web. Check it out here. Some are huge, so you'll have to wait. Enjoy.

Dogs and their Biscuits

The store I work at has had three managers in the 18 months it's been open. (The first was there a month, the second's last day was November 30th, and the third plans on staying forever.) The first official day the store was open, one of the baristas suggested that drive-thru should have doggy biscuits for all the dogs that are dragged around town by their owners. (I, personally, disagreed with that suggestion and you'll see why as I move on.) The first manager did it, and it's become a tradition and having the biscuits is expected by several dogs and their owners.

We ran out of biscuits last Tuesday. I worked drive several times between then and yesterday and each owner who wanted a biscuit for their dog, I was pleasant and told them there were no more biscuits. Most were nice back and told me we should get more biscuits. Yesterday was different.

There was a lady, with her little weiner dog on her lap, who pulled up to the menu at about 5:30 yesterday evening, she ordered a drink and a dog treat. I told her we had no treats today.

She asked me if I was sure. I said I was and gave her the total.

She pulled forward to the window, the weiner dog trying to climb into Starbucks. I asked her for her money.

She said she I should go buy dog treats. I said I couldn't, there were only two of us in the store now and asked her for the money.

She said she wanted a cookie, like a snikerdoodle, for the weiner dog. I said we had sold out of all cookies but had biscotti (which is true) and asked her for her money.

She handed me the money and said I should go buy more treats. I took the money and gave her the change and her drink and said I can't and it's not up to me to make a trip to the store unless we run out of milk (which we do, constantly).

She raised her voice at me and said that I should be fired for not having treats! She wanted to complain to the manager! She wanted to write a complaint to the company! She thought that our store should be shut down! She's never come back here again! I offered to get her one of those complaint forms that can be mailed to Starbucks. She drove off.

I don't think she was kidding about any of what she yelled. She wasn't laughing. She wasn't smiling. She was pissed. And this is why I wish our store had never started with this dog biscuit thing. Whenever we run out there's always a couple of nuts like that.

I hope we never get a new batch of biscuits.

More from Me

Well, life has been very busy for me. I'm working six days this week and worked five last week (pretty good for a guy with only one day on the schedule). And I also feel like all the sleep I lost after I left work is trying to catch up with me. I go to bed early and wake up late. Strange.

Any way, I've been listening to too much NPR again and heard some more great stories.

The first is about this wonderful thing called StoryCorps. This is place in New York's Grand Central Station where people go to interview their friends and family to help create a history of, well, now. After the interview is done, a CD is created for the people who were in the booth and a CD is created to go to the Library of Congress. I think this is awsome. If I had the money (and therefore the time) I'd take my grandparents there and do this with them.

Second is something I heard this morning about Star Wars and the Lord of the Rings. See, Star Wars fans are attacking LotR because they worry that LotR may become a more popular trilogy. I have several questions, but the main one is: Is there no place in these pepole to enjoy both trilogies? I like the both. I see strengths and weakness in both. I can attack or defend either. Are those Star Wars people so insecure about what they enjoy that they have to attack anther good movie series? I don't get it.

And finally, I heard this great interview about the lost books and sects of Christianity. Next time I'm at a real bookstore, I'm keeping my radar up to look for these two books, very interesting.

Wednesday, December 17, 2003

Christmas Songs

Because imitation is the simplest form of flattery, I'm stealing Lore Fitzgerald Sjöberg's form for writing his Ratings to write about a few songs that are heard at Christmas time, so here I go:

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
Well, I wonder what this song's gonna be about? A snowman? Santa? Maybe Nancy the Christmas Cow? No, the title tells us all we need to know, doesn't it. And what do we find out? The little guy is made fun of by the popular deer because his nose glows, because he's different. But when the guy in charge of the populars needs a glowing nose he makes the weird one popular and suddenly Rudolph's a hero, isn't that what life's really about? So, this song teaches people that the guy in charge of the populars can change the group structure on a whim. However, the song did have a decent special made with Burl Ives singing so I can forgive the message, somewhat. C+
Winter Wonderland
There's something magical about snow, isn't there? Okay, not really, but for some reason it's always associated with Christmas. This song has no mention about Christmas, but you don't hear it being sung after the New Year, do you? Winter lasts until March 21st people and snow can last a lot longer, depending on where you live, but still this is a Christmas song. It's a fun song, thought. We have a snowman marrying kids and then one being a clown which is destroyed by kids, good winter fun. We also have people conspiring by the fire, which helps feed my paranoia, although for years I used to think they were perspiring by the fire, which makes sense. My only real problem with this song is that the opening lines get cut out of almost every version I've heard. If the opening's missing B+ If it's there A-
Santa Baby
Christmas time sluts! Now there's fun for the whole family. Okay, so there's now lyrics that suggest that the girl wants to screw Santa for better gifts, but every version I heard is sung in that coy voice that sure implies that sex for better gifts may happen. And then there are the gifts she wants, talk about greed. I want a sable, a convertible, a yacht, a diamond mine. Come on, the only way she's getting those is if Santa's gettin' a little sumpin' sumpin', ya know? B-
It Came Upon a Midnight Clear
Oh... My... God. This... song... is... so... boring. So... slow. I... can't... take... it. Five... or... six... verses... that... just... go... on... forever... and... ever. Does... this... song... have... an... end? The... religious... theme... of... the... song... doesn't... bother... me..., in... fact... I... enjoy... most... of... the... overly... religious... songs..., especially... when... sung... by... Simon... and... Garfunkle... (two guys doing a three part harmony, amazing), but... I... kinda... like... those... songs. I... know... when... it... came. I... know... what... the... night... was... like. I... want... the... rest... of... the... story..., but... I... don't... want... it... to... take... thirty... minutes. D
The Night Santa Went Crazy
Ah, Weird Al knows how to work the spirit of the season to his advantage. This song, for those who haven't heard it, tells the story of Santa's madness for handing out gifts turned to rage and hatred and he takes it out on his crew at The North Pole. Almost every reindeer has a grisly death. Mrs. Claus is gonna make millions. The elves now work for the post office. And Virginia knows the real truth about Santa. Ah, the wonders of Christmas never cease to amaze me. A-

Sunday, December 14, 2003

A Quick Note

There's nothing like working with a flaming gay man to make you feel super straight.

Friday, December 12, 2003

All Gone

Well, the snow is gone, ice has formed, and I got to go to a printing press. A decent day.

Thursday, December 11, 2003


Guess What

Just thought you'd all like to know, IT'S SNOWING! I just woke up and was wondering why I couldn't hear the rain fall, I peaked out the window and saw everything covered in white, including the road. It's wonderful. And the flakes coming down are gianormous.

Tuesday, December 09, 2003

I dream of Daria

A few weeks ago, I was swooshing through eBay and I found a complete Daria on DVD. Now, I know that MTV won't ever be releasing Daria (or it's at least very unlikely) because it would cost them a whole lot of money to license the music. But I want these episodes very much so I keep on surfing back to take a look. I found one up for auction today. I want to pay $45 dollars, but I'm concerned. These people seem to appear and disappear every week or so and that makes me wonder if the DVDs would ever actually get to a person. I understand changing you username when your illegally selling copyrighted goods, but if the person isn't consistently there, how can anyone trust them?


Well, today is now tomorrow and this should get rid of all those annoying pictures I posted.

Oh, and here's a link to the true ending to How the Grinch Stole Christmas. You'll need some audio program. Enjoy.

Monday, December 08, 2003

Knavenly Keep Klinging Kookie Knack

Have you ever felt like there's something, an idea perhaps, in your head and it's trying to push it's way out? You know, it's like the eggs in there, that that bug you brother dropped in your ear once long ago, are hatching and trying to find an outlet somewhere in your body. I don't think I've ever had that feeling, but I'm still hoping.

Anyway, my attempt at writing a novel hasn't proceeded at all. I haven't written anything about it in over a month. I was looking up some of the history of this area to use as research toward some names. Unfortunately, I can't find a decent online resource for native California languages. And then the plotting hasn't been going too well. I have a sort of map for the first five chapters and for the last three. So, I have the beginning and the end, which includes the climax. The problem is what goes on in between?

It's not an exciting novel. It's not based around any kind of action, but on the characters. I don't want it plot driven, like so many of the books I like to read. I want the characters to be realistic. I want them to be understood, but not necessarily liked because that's the way real life works, right?

There is a gun in the story, but I don't plan on anyone dying (of course, if I actually get around to writing it, the characters may take over and someone may end up dead, we'll all see). I want the reader to feel a little ashamed of reading the book. I want it to be like voyeurism. Like you shouldn't be involved in the story or knowing about it, but you are.

Is that too artsy of an idea? Is it too much?

Sometimes, I think I should just stick with science fiction and fantasy, I know those best, better than I do what goes on out in the "real" world. Write what you know, right? All I know are the fictional worlds I see on TV and I read about in books.

It's a bit frightening.

Saturday, December 06, 2003

Something I'd love to say and mean, in real life:

"I bribed them to play us a song that'll drive us insane and make our hearts swell."

Family Guy

It's official, Family Guy may be coming back to TV!

What Works

Okay, I've taken a look at my page and decided that maybe I could make it look better with that comic there. I wanted to try to write something huge, but that takes time and I don't want to write that much here right now. So, I'm currently figuring out the exact proportions so it doesn't get distorted when I adjust the height and width. I hope it works, but if it's too small to read, for you, it's the one that was published Friday the 5th.


Is it okay that I want this so much?

If you want to get it for me and have forty grand around, order it here.


Anyone who's played a tabletop roleplaying game has to read the rest of this arc. It starts here.

Thursday, December 04, 2003

Days Back

The fact that Optimus Prime is Jewish! has nothing to do with this post.

Does anyone out there want to know about my work? Anyone? I see one hand out there. I suppose that's enough for me.

Okay, as I posted before, I got rehired on Monday. Tuesday, I went in and spent an hour filling out all the paperwork, again, but I'm told I'll get paid for two, hooray!

While I was filling out the paperwork (and talking to Claire about her trip to China, which I was hoping I could link to, but it wasn't at the DUDs website) my manager came to me and offered me some hours on Wednesday, four, to be exact, from 5 to 9 of her shift so she could be non-coverage. I took them, of course. Later, she was entering the information in the computer, and she offered me more hours, 1 to 9. I said yeah and then went home.

I woke up in the morning and went to school. I'm always bored there, it's an introduction to the internet class. So, I started to quiz myself on what I could remember about Starbucks. The codes that go on the cups. The number of pumps in the drinks and the exceptions to those rules. The temp of milk. How to make good foam. You know, the important things, and I couldn't remember very well. I got nervous. I started to think that I had made a mistake and I shouldn't go back. My hands were clammy. As I drove from school to work my stomach felt upset, but I went to work anyway.

I couldn't clock in with my numbers, I guess one day isn't enough for the computer to get everything together, so I had to use my social and because of that I didn't have to have a till. I got to work bar for 8 hours. I've never done that. I was so good on drive, I was always stuck there taking the orders. My fears were warranted, at first. I had to look up a few recipes and use the cheats to get the pumps right and there were some new codes (I had no idea what a PM was, last year we weren't allowed to write that for Peppermint Mocha). After the first hour, though, all my previous time at that store just kicked in. I didn't have to think about anything. I just pumped, steamed, and pulled. It was oddly liberating. I found myself contemplating the psychological need of some people to be micro-managers while I was making a dry cap. This was probably about hour three. It was a strangely good day.

Oh, and when I first showed up in the back room (office at other stores, I gather) I got a standing ovation. That was odd.

Monday, December 01, 2003

Free Beads

I forgot to meantion, my Mom is now offering a free bead drawing on her website. Maybe you could win it for yourself, or use it as a christmas gift, they are handmade, after all. Oh, and Vote for her on the top 25 site, she has a link at the top of the page, I know she'd like it. (AND SHE DIDN'T PUT ME UP TO THIS!)


Well, I'm back working at StarBucks, starting tomorrow. I'm anxious and apprehensive. I hope that I can use this as a stepping stone when I move to Sacramento in January.

Well, at least I get free coffee and tea and a decent discount.