Saturday, November 25, 2006


I'm finding I'm not the only stupid one on the planet. This involves one of my kids, (I won't say which one because I don't want to embarrass him, but his name starts with an A, ends with a N, and contains the letters aro between the two).

We have all done this at one time or the other and this is not the stupid part. This kid bought a present for his wife at Macy’s. Still not stupid. The following day, a Macy’s coupon appeared in the local paper offering ten dollars off for purchases made at the store on “Black Friday” during certain hours.

So he drags me off to the store in the early hours to fight the crowd, (stupid on my part for going) with the intention of returning the item, getting a refund, and then buying it again in order to get ten bucks off. Nothing wrong with that because he’s part china man.

Here’s where it gets stupid. He hands the clerk the coupon and she promptly hands it back saying, “If you read the fine print, you’ll see that fragrances aren’t covered." Geez, maybe this kid ain’t mine after all.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006


I'm getting tired of lugging my tool box around and have decided to become a marriage counselor. "Bob the Marriage Counselor." Why anyone would think this could be oxymoronic is beyond me......

Sunday, November 19, 2006


One day, I got a call to do some work at a unit in an apartment building housing seniors, and the place was crawling with old people, many of whom looked like death warmed over. Several were in a meeting room drinking morning coffee and the conversation was mostly about aches, pains, and the type of meds they were taking. Except for the lack of a "Mickey D" sign, it looked like any other McDonalds dining room in the morning.

As I waited for the elevator, an ol' guy using a walker shuffled up next to me and pointed upwards. He said to me what sounded like, “Boss?” I didn’t quite understand what he was saying, so I asked him to repeat himself. Again, he pointed up and mumbled, “Boss?” The elevator doors opened and I said, “Yes,” in an effort to make a gracious get-away. Well, he starts shuffling towards the open elevator doors with his walker taking about two inch steps at a time. After rigor mortis sets in on my arm from holding the doors open for him, he finally made it into the elevator. I ask him, “Which floor” and he replies, “What floor are you going to?” “Seven,” I say. “Me too,” he says. As we are exiting the elevator on the seventh floor, he says, “Boss?” By this time, I’m completely confused, tired of holding the door open while carrying my heavy tool box and reply, “No Boss.” He promptly turns to get back into the elevator, all the while spewing expletives and other unintelligible words. I did not stick around to see if the doors pinned him before he made it into the elevator.

As I'm doing work in the unit, a couple of elderly, no make that really old women stopped at the doorway and asked me what was I going to do with all the stuff left in the apartment. I said, “The owner will probably pick up the rest of his belongings at a later date.” “It ain’t gonna happen because he’s dead,” was their reply. "They found him that way and just hauled him off not too long ago." This was news to me, and I spent the rest of the time talking to his ghost while making repairs.

When I finished, I returned to the first floor and when the elevator doors opened, I heard a woman screaming at the top of her lungs at an old guy, saying, “I hope you die and when you do, I’m going to spit on you and step on you.” “Wow, that’s harsh,” I said. Big, big, stupid mistake. I ran as she started in on me spewing trash big time, and all the while coming to realize that I'd never ask her for a date.

I cornered the resident manager outside and told him about the yelling woman. He said, "You should be around to see her when she's having a bad day. I also asked him why he didn’t tell me about the guy dying in his apartment, and he said, "It spooks some people if they know." I made a mental note to jack up my labor cost by ten bucks an hour.

Needless to say, I was depressed for the rest of the day, because the thought occurred to me that this is probably the sort of place I’ll be heading towards real soon. That is, unless I can convince my neighbors to change my "Depend Diapers" when needed.

Friday, November 17, 2006

It must be the season

One of my daughters sent this to me the other day saying it reminded her of me.

I guess I should be thankful it wasn't this......

Thursday, November 16, 2006


I find as I become older, I do more and more stupid things with each passing day. Since I plan to live to age 108, my days should be filled with nothing more than stupid deeds by me, prior to becoming dust in the street. For instance, here's an event that took place yesterday.

In response to badgering from my neighbor Steve, I decided to have the engine oil replaced in my car. Steve is anal when it comes to keeping his car washed, polished and serviced. I on the other hand, couldn't care less about car upkeep. I'm happy as long as it gets me from point a to point b without breaking down.

When I get around to it, I usually go to Jiffy Lube for oil changes and had every intention of doing so this time. Here's where the stupid part kicks in. While in WalMart, I passed the auto section and said to myself, "Why not." I grabbed five quarts of oil, a filter, and an oil change box, paid for the items and then went home to start the task. To my credit, I changed into clothing that was one step from the local landfill.

I jacked up the front of the car and crawled under it with wrench in hand to drain the oil. I found the drain plug and instead of the adjustable wrench I thought was needed to remove it, I discovered it required an allen wrench. I don’t recall ever seeing an oil drain plug requiring an allen wrench, but I’m progressive and realize things change. After several trips to the tool box, I finally got one to fit the plug. One would think I would have taken all of the allen wrenches with me at one time in order to lessen the number of times I had to go from standing to laying on my back. Stupid!

I pulled the plug and while the oil was draining, I remember thinking that the stream of oil didn’t look very dirty or discolored. In fact, it looked clear and clean. Another thing, not a lot drained out. Could it be that there was an obstruction covering the hole preventing the remaining oil from draining? Or was the engine very low on oil. Not surprising, since I never check the oil level. So, I stuck my finger in the hole and immediately got burned because the pan was extremely hot. Stupid!

Got up and pulled the oil dipstick. It showed full. What the hell.....? Scratched my head, stood there for a while and it finally came to me. The oil dipstick was on the right side of the car and I had drained the oil pan on the left side of the car. Right! I had drained the transmission fluid and confirmed it when I checked the dipstick on the left side of the car. Stupid!

Crawled under the car again, which each time is getting harder to do and finally found the oil plug sort of hidden at the rear of the pan. Now I really start to get stupid. I look into the box containing the drained transmission fluid, and the material that soaks up the fluid didn’t appear to be very wet. So I decided there would be enough room for the engine oil and removed the plug which immediately fell into the box. All I could do was watch the level of oil rise in the box until it started to overflow its sides. Now I’m cussing and trying to keep the oil from running down the driveway. The puddle is getting bigger, it’s spreading fast, and I’m flopping around like a fish out of water trying to move fast enough to stay out of its path. By now, the neighbors are coming over to check out the commotion and I hear one of them yell to her spouse, “Get the camera, get the camera!“ Smart ass. What a friggin mess, and finding the plug in the box of oil was no piece of cake either! Think it ends here? Not hardly.

One would think transmission fluid is transmission fluid. Well, it’s not. Different fluid for different cars. Checked three places and finally found some that was made for the Toyota. I was told it would take 4.9 quarts to the tune of about 25 bucks. I get home and start dumping the fluid into the transmission and after the third quart, my brain reminds me that it didn’t seem like a lot of transmission fluid had drained initially. So, I shove the dipstick in and wouldn’t you know it. The transmission was overfilled, by a lot. Now what! More stupid. I decide to shove a plastic tube down the filling tube in an effort to siphon out the extra fluid. Didn’t work because the diameter of the tube was too small. Plus, the fluid tastes like crap. Back under the car to remove the plug to drain some fluid. I couldn’t get the plug back into the hole and more drained out than necessary. All the while, neighbors are standing there laughing at me.

Got the driveway cleaned as best I could, slapped a "For Sale" sign on the car and had a beer.