I love to cook almost anything. My best creative dishes are ones in which I have no recipe, but rather build up to a final product. Generally in our household, I do the bulk of the cooking since my lovely woman works a full time job, and I work here at the house. Since I have always been creative, I choose to do so now in the kitchen. I find it extremely relaxing to root through the refrigerator and create some mouth watering downright taste exploding dish. I do tend to lean towards a bit spicier concoctions IE:red pepper,black pepper, garlic, seasoning salts, cinnamon, and many other. However my wife cannot take too much spice so I do tone it way down. This madness started years ago when my wife worked at the Kansas City Board of Trade in the General Mills Grain Division. Her two bosses at the time were heavily involved in the KC Board of Trade barbecue team which once a year competed in the big Barbecue here in KC around the same time as the KC Royal event. She was invited to the KC Barbecue one year where we went, and partied in the Board of Trade tent. All you could care to eat and drink for one minor price. I was totally hooked on their entries to the contest. I began asking questions, how do they smoked the meats, spice them, how long to cook, in short everything I could think of to learn how to make these wonderful delicacies. I learned how they made their own rubs, and began experimenting with various ingredients. I added some and subtracting some, varying the amounts of each, and after several years I found the combinations that most people who tried them agreed was the best they ever tasted. Over the next few years, I experimented with various techniques for smoking the meats, the types of woods I used, and the speed in which I cooked them. I can finally now say I think the final product is at its peak in flavor, though knowing me I will probably continue to tweak and expirement. I got into cooking many other dishes simply as a way to help out my wife last year because her job had morphed into several other things, and she was working a huge amount of overtime hours to keep pace. I at first took some of her basic recipes and began tweaking and shucking until I found something I liked. Then are started rummaging in the fridge each day, began with some sort of basic meat and sat down creating. Boy did I create! I like using garlic a lot, but not too overpowering. Another favorite is the use of peppers or onions. One of the basic tenets I subscribe to is never over use any spice. A spice or flavoring should be a complement to the meats and vegetables, not an overpowering force. It reminds me of the time when I was still a kid, and my older sister (name omitted to protect her feelings) tried to make a mint cake. She followed the directions until she got to adding the mint flavoring. It read to add 2 tsp of mint, and she thought tsp and tblspn was the same thing. Needless to say the cake did not come out exactly correct. But I stray. I have learned to add gradually the ingredients and keep tasting so as not over do it. Some dishes require a bit more, some a bit less. I also blend unusual things into the dishes if I think the new spice will add a dimension to the flavor of the dish that again complements, not takes over. I also enjoy chopping and cutting, as long as the knife is sharp. I find the whole cooking process enjoyable, and I look forward to creating something new or a variation upon an old recipe almost every day.
I admit it freely and loudly, I LOVE ZOMBIES! No I do not mean physically love them, I simply love to read, ingest (pardon the pun) and watch everything zombie. My love of the zombie universe stems from my early childhood, where I had the beegeebers scared out of my by a movie called "The Invisible Invaders", which later spawned the TV series "The Invaders". The TV series did not do any justice to the movie, but was somewhat enjoyable to watch. My interest increased over the years with the classic most everyone has seen or at least heard of "Night of the Living Dead". This movie was one of the fore runners of some of us zombie lovers basic tenets of what a zombie really is made up of. Basically the idea that zombies are the dead coming back or brought back to life, low intelligence, slow moving and jerky movements, hard to kill, and a desire for human flesh are all explored in this classic. The zombie world has expanded into many other facets, some of which I will explore in this writing. One thing can be said, zombies come in most any color, size, feature, or even taste (my license to the absurd). What is a zombie? Most people think of zombies as the creatures I discussed from the classsic movie, however you might make a point to say vampires fall into the realm of zombism. They are dead (in many cases referred to as "the living dead", they drink the blood of human beings (eat their liquids), and are somewhat difficult to kill depending on which story you are reading at the time, IE:stake in the heart, sunlight,holy water (can kill in volume, but only burns in smaller quantities)and maybe even cutting off the head. Some of these especially cutting off the head will work with the normal everyday zombie, but for arguments sake we will stay with basic zombies at the moment. The zombie can be created by some sort of virus, a bite by the infected, radiation (though I rarely see this as a cause) mystical chants (usually when relating to backward natives and their rituals), ingested materials (such as toxic chemicals) and in some cases laboratory experiments that have gone wrong (or right depending on y0ur point of view I guess). Zombies can live on for various lengths of time if you want to call it living, again depending on the storyline. They can somehow continue to function for months, years or maybe even decades or centuries. I prefer to think of them as slowly rotting away, piece by piece until they have no real pieces left. In the movie "28 days later", the zombies are created from a lab expirement on monkees that is loosed on the world by hippie agitators against the cruelty of the corporations using them in their studies. These zombies are actually technically still alive but diseased with the "Rage" virus (made as a military weapon to destabilize the opposing's sides population. So these particular zombies are still attempting to stay "alive" through their attacks on living beings and their taste for human knoshes. In the end of the movie the zombies are shown to be "dying" off from starvation. The newer series of "Night of the Living Dead" movies which include "Day of the Dead", Dawn of the Dead, Island of the Dead, and others the zombies are faster and in most cases more deadly than in the original movie. This leads to the question, "DO you prefer fast or slow zombies in your movies?". I really do not care as long as they make them at least somewhat believable.
I am an eclectic type of music lover. My first real record given to me by my parents for my 12th birthday was the song "Happy Together". I played that song over,and over, and over (you get the point) until I think it literally wore out. I was totally hooked on rock and roll at that time. However my first true "experience" with music was in grade school our class would go several times a year to hear classical music from the local orchestra. I truly enjoyed those experiences, and began liking classical music. The underlying theme in most of my early music was a strong, heavy sound. this theme wound thru both my loves, classical such as Beethoven, Chopin, Bach, and in rock and roll with groups such as the Beatles (of course), the Rolling Stones, the Trogs, Kiss and many others. As my music blossomed,I began enjoying heavier and deeper groups in rock n roll, including Pink Floyd, Moody Blues,King Crimson,Lynard Skynrd and others. Some of my favorite early tunes included; Paint it Black (Stones), Behind Blue EYes (Moody Blues), Free Bird (Skynrd), Knights in White Satin (Moody Blues), and Back in the USSR (Beatles). Many of hours I spent laid back with the music pounding in my ears. My various girl friends over the years, were split some enjoyed and related to my music and some simply endured it. The one constant was I never wavered from my thorough enjoyment of music in general. Yes there are some types of music I do not like as well, some I even detest. Now a days my love for music has not waned, but yes it has again transformed into hard fast screaming rock and roll. My favorite bands today include Three Days Grace, system of a Down, Linkin Park, Seether, Five FInger Death Punch. I still enjoy listening to other types of music such as Evanescence (love that Amy Lee's voice), My Chemical Romance,and others. My favorite two bands at this time, are Three Day's Grace, and Seether both of which I had the blessing of hearing in concert together at the Midland Theater in downtown Kansas City with my family several years ago. One really kick ass concert. That same night I was introduced to a newer group Skillet who also are good. The one thing that stands out about my two favorites bands is how prolific they are. They continue to pound out super great hits, and I really enjoy most of what they produce. I have over the past year or so also began really liking the band Five Finger Death Punch, they have several big hits recently that are over the top. Their rendition of the old song "Bad Company" caught my attention, and since then they have had several songs that move my soul. I think the lead singer has one of the best voices I have ever heard, and I await more great things from them. I could continue to talk hours about the various songs that have touched me, but let me hear from you, maybe you can turn me on to something that I will enjoy even more.
While sitting here watching the news regarding the recent tornado disasters all over the country, I was amused by the usual din from the looney tunes regarding what is about to actually happen around the world. Now I am assuming you by now have heard the anguished cries from the Koo Koo Klan debating the end of the world is just about an everyday occurence . The last well published nut case claimed the world was going to end on May 21st around 6PM in parts of the world. When that prediction went flat he immediately came out the next day or so and said the world was not going to end until October 21st of this year. (This way he can still sell T-shirts and survival robes to his long list of rubes.)Understand this is the same fruitcake who claimed to his followers that the world was ending a while back......then came back with "Oh My bad!" Sorry Charlie....I need even more donations to help me see the true future ahead. I have to admit, personally I think the brainless flock of mindless robots that follow him should be pitied for listening to even one single world uttered from this idiot's worthless cake hole. I have no respect for these supposed and self proclaimed religious zealot (at least usually religion is the background behind their preaching) knuckleheads who spew forth their messages of doom, then when their time table comes due, they speak of a slight miscalculations, or a miniscule error in their thinking, or perhaps a new proclamation from GOD! Most of these dopes are simply preying on the simple minded, or low esteemed persons who populate every nook and cranny of the world. These false idols are like the snake oil salesmen of old who preyed on fear and on insecurity. Now we are suppose to wait holding our breath for October 21st, and if that doesn't happen, I am sure he will have another "revelation" , or then wait a little more than one year and viola we have the great 2012 end of the Mayan Calendar debacle. Supposedly according to these self proclaimed "seers" the Mayan calendar only goes to the date December 21st ,2012. This is said to be true because that is the last written record from the Mayans regarding time. It brings to mind a cartoon I saw a while back where two Mayan Indians are standing over a stone tablet, and the one holding the chisel turns to his Mayan buddy and proclaims "This ought to drive them crazy! I ran out of space to continue the calendar". What is even more perplexing is the number of so called "experts", scientists,scholars and general pain in the butts,who are falling in line with the doomsday predictions. You have this or that astronomer saying the planets will align on that date causing the Earth's poles to shift, and the spin of the Earth to reverse itself. This will cause the continents around the world to shake an shimmy with massive earthquakes,tidal waves, and tempatures changing in wild swings. They then start spouting gibberish that will prove their theories. Oh no the world is coming to an end. Or that a comet or asteroid or other astral body will hit our planet and render the surface uninhabitable. Not to be left behind, Hollywood is spewing out various themes that beat the mantra the world is about to end!!! (Nothing against Hollywood, I like entertainment, but some fools actually believe the cow patty crunchies put into a movie as being real. ) Now really folks, first of all, prognosticators have since the beginning of time predicted the Earth's demise. Way back when we were barely beginning to stand on two legs, the elders or priest would predict the Earth's end whenever there was a full eclipse. Lo and behold that didn't happen. Then there was the change of the century from one to another such as 1899 to 1900, people claimed the world would cease whenever the calendar went from one century to the next. Remember the great Y2K scare of 2000? Many learned experts claimed that the world would collapse in chaos whenever the calendar changed from 1999 to 2000 due to the computers being based on a calendar from the 1900s calendar not the new 2000. Companies across the United States and even the world spent millions if not billions checking all the line codes to correct this evil. It didn't even cause a hiccup on the radar screen when the new year actually came. Some people panicked in 1899 when the new year approached and caused some stirring of fear until the new year arrived and nothing happened. One other example I remember when I was a young man (No my daughter not back in the Stone Age as you thought), I read a book called Criswell Predicts. In this book, the author according to the cover of his book was 87 % accurate on previous predictions he had made, and he predicted a whole slew of horrible events for the next few decades, including the city of Denver, Colorado would be attacked by some sort of alien ray that would turn all buildings and hard structures into rubber and collapse on the hapless occupants, crushing them to death and basically wiping out the entire city's population. Another of his predictions had a lake somewhere in the center of Europe (I do not remember if an exact lake was mentioned) would be full of tourists and swimmers, and suddenly in a very short span of time a new volcano would rise out of the center of the lake and boil alive everyone in it. The last prediction I remember said that a terrible disease would sweep thru the world causing our skin to dry up and crack with painful and deadly results. The only help was to rub the skin with quantities of oil to help defeat this evil. None of these predictions came about, the Denver Donkeys still run the field at Mile High Stadium, only mild sunburns have been reported from the lakes in Europe, and my skin is still baby bottom soft without the use of oil. (kind of screwed up his batting average of 87 % huh?) I learned from this not to believe something just because it was in a book or on TV. Finally I look at these end of the world predictions not only to be false and misleading, but even if they are true, when it hits, there is not a lot I can do to prevent it, so I will simply bend over and kiss my ass goodbye! Grab a can of Michelob Ultra and flip off the cosmos and the comet about to tap dance on the top of my head.
One of the biggest pleasures in my life are my two dogs, both from the Psychos R Us School of Canines. I have two of these puppy dogs. Actually they are both older but I am not sure wiser dogs. Sammy is the older of the two, about 8 years old, and a black labrador mix, the biggest sweetie ever put on the Earth. He is about 70 pounds of pure love, not a mean bone in his body. Even though he does like to woof at anything that moves and then trot off to woof at something else. Jensen is our latest acquisition, rescued from a life of endless kennel time. He is 57 pounds of sneaky love. We think he is a mix of Jack Russell Terrier and Springer Spaniel. Looks a lot like the RCA Nipper dog, same brown patch over his eyes, and just as curios. He came to us by way of my sister the realtor from one of her clients who decided that they no longer wanted him or their other dog and were going to put them in a pound. My sister's heart which is bigger than the State of Missouri, could not allow this, so she called us, and we became new proud parents.She kept the other dog to complement her own old dog. We like to refer to Jensen as our devil dog. He tends to get into things he shouldn't but it does make life more interesting. One note, we tend to call him "Jimmy" after several months because my sister said his name was "Jimpson". Until one day when my sister brought us some papers on the dog and we realized after month's of calling him "Jimpson and Jimmy" his name was actually "Jensen". Confused yet? So are we. Anyway back to Jimmy, he is a big cuddler. He loves to crawl up on your lap, or next to you when you are laying down, and then snuggle his head under you. He also tends to be a rubbery dog. He likes to lie, draped over you with the seemingly impossible positions that make him appear to have not nary a bone in his body. He also sheds ginormous amounts of hair. I have never seen any animal shed more than his own weight in hair on an hourly basis. Think I am kidding? Try vacuuming around the livingroom and within a few minutes, it looks like a the great blizzard just dropped in and left its mark. Sammy needs constant love, day in and day out, or actually second by second. He is constantly jabbing his nose into you letting you know you are not paying enough attention to his world. He also is still not thrilled with us acquiring a rival for our affections. Jimmy has begun picking up Sammy's bad habits, and is beginning to vie for his own attention. It is becoming a big battle daily with each dog trying to get more love than the other. Sammy loves to fetch balls, toys, even empty bottles, and Jimmy begins to get jealous and barks out his frustrations. We have tried to teach Jimmy to fetch, but his idea of fetching is to grab the ball away and go over and lie down with it. I am not sure if he is too dumb to learn or too smart to be fooled into chasing the stupid ball. Who is the really dumb bell here, huh? Sammy has also acquired the new name the "Pasta Piranha". This noble title has been bestowed on him by my wife due to a new peculiar habit he has started. One night while eating spaghetti, I held a piece up for him to eat, and he attacked this pasta like a school of piranhas taking down a full grown oxen. Snap, snap,snap in a full ferocious attack and the pasta was gone, but luckily not my fingers in the process (I did check thoroughly even so). What makes this particularly amusing is normally Sammy takes food from you very gently. Film to be shown at a later date. More coming on these two knuckleheads in future posts.
Wandering through my storied past, I come across another tale from the recesses' of my wicked mind. The story begins as I and my best friend Jack (names have been changed to protect the truly embarassed) are driving our way from Kansas City to Chicago to buy and sell at the big Toy Show that is held 3 times a year in Chicago. On our trek northeasternly Jack is telling me about how he had spent the last six weeks working out everyday trying to improve his health, and stamina. He spent quite a bit of time reshaping and was extremely proud of his results. Personally I am not a really observant person and in all honesty I had not noticed any change in him, due in part to the fact that I had seen him many times over that period . so I did not notice the gradual process of change. Anyway, not really thinking about it, we continued on our way and the conversation was forgotten by me. We arrive that Wednesday afternoon, and begin unloading merchandise from the van and to take up to our hotel room. Within a few minutes of our arrival, one of our mutual friends and fellow toy traders comes by and immediately remarks to me that I am looking good, and how did I lose my weight? I explained I had not been doing anything special and thanked him for his comment. He turns to Jack eyes him for a second, and nods his direction. He then turns back to me shakes my hand with another compliment and wanders off. I begin unloading again, when Jack remarks in a kind of annoyed way,"What gives here? I have been working out hard every day for 6 weeks, and he does not even notice me. You however have not done one thing , and he is all over you gushing about how much better you look! What gives?! I turn to him and shrug and begin planning my next move. Realizing Jack is somewhat frustrated, I decide to add some gasoline to the spark of fire. I am such a pyro when it comes to annoying people. My plan forms in my head as a clear picture of wickedness! Later that day, I slip out of the hotel room on the pretense of room shopping for toy purchases. I proceed downstairs to several dealers I know who always have the same room numbers at this show. I tell each of them about what has happened, and encourage them to come to our room in the next day or so and compliment me on my fitness, while ignoring Jack's hard work. I also instruct each dealer to tell other dealers within the hotel what is going on and not to let on to Jack what I had planned for him. Boy this really worked out better than I had ever dreamed! Satisfied, I return to the room and settle in for the fun to begin. Sure enough within an hour or so a dealer walks in. He begins praising me and ignoring Jack. I act embarrassed by the compliments and thank him. He nods at Jack and leaves. Jack sits there brooding, as more and more dealers filter into the room, with basically the same actions. The day passes to the evening, and I can tell Jack has gotten more ruffled as dealer after dealer wanders in. That evening he grumbles about the situation some more, and not generally a very happy camper. I continued acting like the sympathetic friend with the shoulder to cry on, greatly amused at his snubbing. I keep reassuring him that things would be better the next day. The morning hours begin new tortures for Jack as more and more dealers come in and praising me while in most cases almost completely ignoring Jack. By now Jack is fit to be tied, I think everyone in the hotel must have heard of the fun and everyone wanted to join in. Just before lunchtime, in comes this giant friend of ours (we will refer to him as bear). Now bear is the six foot six individual with wild curly black hair, beard stubble and tattoos running rampant on his arms. He looks like an original Hell's Angels founder. However Bear is one of the nicest gentleless guys you would ever meet. He comes up to me and gives me a huge hug, with those giant long arms. Stepping back and surveying me from head to toe, he grins and says "Jon my old bud,how ya been? You're looking great, you losing weight?." Then for the final straw that breaks the camel's back, he turns to Jack and kind of snorts at him in contempt and asks"Why don't you follow Jon's lead?" The next moment even I did not anticipate the reaction from Jack. He suddenly leaps up and shouts angrily" Dammit it all! I worked for weeks at the gym, to trim down, and all he did (me) is nothing! Everyone thinks he is looking great, but no one is even mentioning me!" With that, he storms out of the room, grumbling loudly all the way down the hall, and vanishes. The dealers there in the room burst out into a hearty laugh, which lasted for several minutes. Out in the hall other dealers in on the joke, are snickering at him as he leaves. I continue selling that day and several hours passed before Jack shows back up. Obviously in a black mood, he drops into one the chairs still grumbling, but not so loudly now. After he sits there a while, I finally admit that I set him up, and Jack informs me he will get me back for my trick. Needless to say he never forgot that and did try on at least one occasion to get me, but that is a story for a later date........maybe after I work out a bit!
Here I sit in the snow, My spirits at an all time low. My feet are now a block of ice, Whom ever said that winter was nice? I begin to shiver and I shake Hoping I live for goodness sake! Boy do I hate this cold, It has become way too old! My only shred of brighter hope Is that soon with spring I will cope. I can feel the warming sun, As I think of outdoor fun! But soon my thoughts will turn to dark, Cause my butt is stuck in park! Here I sent within a mound, Of white hell snow that I have found. My toes do feel like cubes of ice, My skin has turned the color of rice!! I think my toes have fallen aside, No longer able to reside , On my feet which are blue. Stuck to ice like sort of glue! Frostbite has become my friend, wrapping me with love it sends. It kisses me with lips that died, Assuring me,but it lied! I dream of sunshine as my hero Even though its beneath the zero.
Now some people would refer to me as a bit crazy, but I beg to differ on their opinion by saying I am flat out nuts (at least at times). Another gem from my past begins about 18 years ago at an antique / flea market show I was doing in Kansas City. I was setting up my booth early on the morning of the show, and into my booth walks an individual whom I know but do not particularily care much about. His passion was collecting antique radios which at the time my own tastes ran parallel to his. In fact that is how I became to know of him. Now to let you understand what this particular man was about, a conversation with another friend of mine gave me the best description of this guy. His evaluation of the man was that he was the nicest guy you would ever meet until you did any business with him. In this case, if you ever tried to sell, buy or trade an antique radio with him, he would be just as happy to skin you alive and let the buzzards pick your bones than make a decent deal with you. Anyway getting back to the story, he comes into my booth early this morning, and begins looking at the radio related items I was displaying. He comes upon a crystal radio (1920's if not a bit earlier). I had just purchased this radio the previous day at a garage sale for 25 cents, but I knew the retail value to be around $125.00, so I priced the radio at $95.00 so it would sell quickly and pass on a bit of the good price. He turns to me and in his usual condescending tone, tells me that he would be willing to give me ten dollars for the radio. I politely refused, and started to move away when he grabs my arm and becomes insistent on me selling him this radio at his "offer". I again refused and tried to pull away. At this point he remarks in his snotty way "It is only worth 15 dollars at the most". Now normally I am a calm and easy going type of guy, but this individual just plain rubbed me wrong. I am getting angrier by the second as he continues to jabber on about what bad condition the radio was in, and how he was doing me a favor by offering as much as he did. I snatched the radio out of his hands, and began admonishing him. I told him if that was all it was worth, then ........and before I knew what I was doing, I threw the radio on the ground and stomped it flat. Picking up the smashed piece, I held it forth and told him that I would take his offer now. He stood there, with his mouth wide open (kind of like a fish gasping for air) and totally speechless for a few minutes. Finally he manages to to stammer out "I was going to buy that radio" and added "What do you think you are doing?" I grinned at him and told him it was my radio and I could do as I please, and would he kindly exit my display area. At this he turned and stomped out of the booth muttering to himself all the way. I do not really know what prompted my outburst, but one thing kept coming back to me, that was the best 25 cents I ever spent! Interesting sub note; In the years following the incident, whenever this guy walked into my booth, and wanted to buy anything, he always paid the marked price in full, never again to try and low ball me. Isn't life grand?!!
Being a collectibles dealer for approximately 20 years, I have run into all kinds of strange people, insane people, goofy people, and just funny people. One story that comes to mind happened about 12 years ago, when I was doing regular antique shows/ flea markets in Tulsa, Oklahoma. At that time , the collector items , specifically Pepsi character glasses were a fairly hot item, and I usually sold them fairly quickly. These glasses are 16 ounce heavy glass, and on one side they have a colorful round circle with a super hero or villain emblazoned in the center (hence the reference to Pepsi Moon Series). This one particular show, I had brought with me a complete set of 16 super hero Pepsi moon series glasses, and I was pretty proud of myself, because to have a complete set in itself was really rare. So I smugly set the glasses on one of my display shelves, and finished setting up the entire booth. Priced this set at $350, which was about right for each glass if sold separately. Now next to me was this cranky old dude named Joe, whom I had known for a year or so. He sets up his display, and to my chagrin, he has an entire cardboard table which he fills with these same Pepsi Super Hero moon glasses. Then my heart really sinks as he sets up a cardboard sign in the middle of the table "Choice $2 each". Not being of sound mind or body, and needing some cash to buy anything else, I did not try to purchase any of his, except for a few rarer glasses . Oh well maybe the next show I would sell mine. So I began to fiddle around with other things, and tended to customers. About one half hour into the beginning of the show, I noticed a very nicely dressed woman making her way up the aisle. I see her stop at Joe's booth and start rifling through his glass assortment, paying close attention to the sign in the middle of the table. Turning away, I continued helping another customer, not really watching what was going on next booth over. A couple of minutes pass and the same woman appears in my booth and starts looking over my selection. She stops in front of my display of glasses and begins examining each unit one by one. Finishing with the customer I had been working with, I stroll over to her and ask her if she needs any help? She turns to me and says " Could you do any better on the price of these glasses?" Now I am thinking she wants me to drop the price for the set down to the same price as Joe's, but I politely say " IF you want the glasses right now, I will sell the set to you for only $320." She replies to my surprise "OK, wrap them up, and I will be back to pick them up". Then pulls out the cash and pays me and leaves. Stunned I glance over to Joe's booth and the glasses on his table are still sitting there. I walk over to him and ask if he would do any better on the entire lot of glasses he has sitting there , and he tells me no, he just witnessed me selling my set for a lot more money. Shrugging, I pull out the cash and pay him for the glasses on his table, which number 87. He boxes them up, and I move them over to put under my table cloth in my booth. I then wrap up a set from the glasses I just purchased, and just as I finish, up comes the same woman. "Why haven't you wrapped up my glasses? she asks. I reply "Here they are maam, I had several sets with me today, and some extras also. " She looks at me in surprise and says "Oh, well how much will you sell me the other sets for?" Now I am really amazed! I know with the set still on display plus 2 other sets, and 39 other glasses, we are talking some nice chunk of change. Not missing a beat, I tell her I will sell all the rest of my inventory for only $1100. She stands there a minute and then says "I do not have enough cash, could I give you a check?" "Sure I can, your check is fine with me" She proceeds to pull out $700 more in cash and writes me a check for an additional $400. After she is done paying me, she says she will go get her husband to pick them up, so would I please wrap them all up. Dumbfounded, I begin wrapping glass after glass, and fill half a dozen empty boxes for transport. Within a few minutes, the lady shows back up with her husband in tow, and he begins carrying out the boxes. Not being able to resist, I ask the lady while she is directing her husband's actions "Maam, I do not mean to be rude, but I have to ask, earlier the guy next to me had some of these glasses on his table, why did you not buy his? " She turns to me and admonishes me by saying "Oh those things? They were just reproductions, they were too cheap to be real!" Then she leaves as her husband wheels out the last boxes. Joe walks over to me shaking his head, because he had been listening to my exchange with her. "Jon I just do not believe what just happened!" I nodding my head in agreement tell him " Yeah I hope you are not upset about the transaction!" Which he looks with me and grins saying "Jon, sometimes your the dog, and sometimes your the hydrant....today I think I am the hydrant", and walks back to his booth. This is a crazy world, huh?
A few weeks ago, my son got a refund check from AT&T. This of course is not a big deal, however the check was for .02 CENTS! To issue this check they must have spent 1 to 2 dollars for the labor, paper,ink, and postage. And these mensa monkeys wonder why their profits are not any higher? Whjch makes me remember the following true tale of AT & T HELL! I had a similar experience a number of years ago but in reverse. I ended my relationship (otherwise known as the royal screw) with AT & T . About six months went by and suddenly I started getting bills from them for what they claimed I still owed them. The amount? It was the grand sum of total importance to them of .10 CENTS! I had paid them in full when I closed the account according to some mensa monkey pencil pushing bill, yet now six months later they wanted an additional .10 CENTS! I refused to pay this amount, based on several theories. One was simply they said I had a balance due at the end of our stormy royal screw, and I paid that balance, thus ending all debts to them. Unfortunately according to their pencil pushing mensa monkeys they were able to scrape up an additional national debt I owed of .10 CENTS! Over the next year and a half, I continued to get dunning notices at regular monthly intervals . BUT as the months passed the bill grew to .15 CENTS! Finally I called (on a competitors phone which was giving quite good service) and spent an hour in AT & T HELL trying to resolve this burdening debt. I was told at that time by their own MENSA MONKEY that the charge would be cleared and I would not get any more billings. Satisfied, I forgot about the bill until about 45 days later, I get a call from a COLLECTION AGENCY trying to collect the now huge bill of .15 CENTS!! Now I do not know about you, but as far as I am aware, collection agencies do not hire the sharpest tack in the box, but this particular agent was fairly pleasant and assured me that the matter would be handled. SURE enough I started getting aporoximately one call a month from various collector agencies pleading with me to pay the bill so they would make a huge profit from my .15 CENTS!! At first I politely explained the situation, and they all agreed I was correct. This degraded into less polite refusals from me to pay what I felt was an illegal shakedown by the AT & T mensa monkeys and their hit squads of collector goons. Months go by and I finally started getting what seemed to be talking to collection agents who had obtained a brain from the wizard of OZ! The next couple of agents informed me that they would indeed have the debt wiped from my record and settle this ridiculous foray into my privacy. GREAT, finally some sense to this madness.......at least for about 3 months, and then another call, but now my debt had ballooned to .17 CENTS! This meant the collection agency was now making even more money from this transaction if and when they actually collected it from me. This happened several times more, and then finally I stopped getting the phone calls and the billings. Wow, peace at last, and AT & T only spent about a BAZILLION dollars trying to collect what eventually went to .17 CENTS!! The kicker to all this was several months passed and then I started getting sweetheart letters from AT & T and their mensa monkeys telling me what a great company they were, and would I like to sign up for their phone service? I truly believe that I would rather stick my feet in glowing hot coals while hammering nails into my testicles, and being forced to watch in person Roseanne Barr and Rosie O'Donnell rubbing oil into each others naked bodies before I will ever again subject to the Mensa Monkeys at AT & T! Oh Lord someone please hand me the Comet Cleanser so I can scrub out that horrible picture from my already severely damaged brain!!