The Blue Friday haul

I said to a friend of mine that one of the grueling challenges that I would have to endure this holiday weekend was trying to get out of it without making one major electronic purchase.  Because I am a compulsive consumer, somewhat easily swayed by the pressure and the hype of Black Friday electronic sales and advertising.

Furthermore, my primary television has an entire line of dead pixels on it.  Granted, it’s maybe ten pixels from the top of the screen, and it’s just one pixel on a 51” screen, so it’s really not that offensive and hardly affects any viewing, but as far as I’m concerned, it’s a permanent blemish, and the first sign that the television is going, and that I should consider a new one, immediately, on Black Friday.  Even if it meant dropping anywhere from $500-1,000.

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Photos: Thanksgiving

I can’t really say that I’m thankful for a whole lot outside of the typical generic ones, like the people around me, but one thing that I am genuinely thankful for is that my life is, although often times erring on the side of boring, but somewhat stable.

My family drives me nuts from time to time, but that’s what family does.  My job might be kind of mundane and boring, but it affords me the ability to pay the bills and sustain my fairly simple life.

The benefit to stability is the fact that when things aren’t going so well for others, I can be at my peak condition of being able to offer help and support, because things aren’t necessarily that complicated in my own life.  And it’s cyclical; it goes without saying that stability isn’t achieved without a decent support system in place for me, if and when I ever need it.

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Maybe a Blue Friday this year

Blue Steel Friday, that is.

I know it’s pretty much the Armageddon of capitalism every year, but I don’t really mind Black Fridays.  Sure, they’re stressful, exhausting and I’ve had my massive share of failures in the past, but I’ve also experienced triumphs and successes in acquiring big ticket items for substantial discounts and/or rewards.  Whereas there are lots of people who see Black Fridays as miserable commercial holidays of chaos, greed and materialism, I often see them as opportunities to make some smart purchasing.

Especially now that most merchants have actually moved into the twenty-first century and actually do as much peddling online as they do in-stores, it makes things a hundred times more efficient and less stressful, since I don’t have to wake up at 3 AM in order to wait in a line to get something I really want.

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Purex can eat a bag of dicks

I don’t remember what exactly Tide did, but whatever it was, it was enough for Jen to decide to not support using Tide detergent moving forward. Personally, I don’t really care, because, it’s detergent, so I had no qualms with switching things up. It’s soapy liquid that helps get my clothes clean, nothing more than that, so I don’t really care what brand it is, so long as is does its job.

Apparently, it’s naïve of me to have that kind of mindset, because it clearly does matter what brand of detergent you’re using. Without getting too detailed, I’ll just say that for the last week or so, I’ve been having some instances of rashes and skin abnormalities of the itching variety that have been puzzling me to why this is the case. Some spots look like straight up poison ivy rashes, and itch like them too. I haven’t really been out in nature any time recently, and if it were truly poison ivy, then it probably would be in way more places and in far worse severity.

And then it dawned on me that one of the very few things that had recently changed, was the fact that we started washing our clothing with Purex detergent, which was our first attempt at using something other than Tide. The stuff claims to be all-natural, or at least boasts a lack of impurities and chemicals that their competitors use. I’m guessing part of their “all-natural” ingredients must include some derivative of poison ivy or sumac, because I’m 99% positive that it’s the detergent that’s causing me these abnormal itchy skin irregularities.

Googling “purex detergent rash” results in all varieties and types of forums, inquiries and mommy blogs talking about numerous people who apparently are having the same afflictions that I’m having right now. I’m actually relieved to know that I’m nothing unique, and that there are many many other people out there having the same issues with Purex-washed clothing that I am.

That being said, Purex can go eat a back of dicks. Fuck Purex, and their shitty product that causes people like me, and others to break out in rashes. This is public damnation of a commercially available product, and I hope all of my six readers will think twice about buying Purex the next time they’re looking for detergent.

Happy trails, Brian McCann

It seems like it was just yesterday, when Brian McCann hit a three-run home run off of Roger Clemens in the playoffs.  And in the metaphorical tomorrow when we refer to next year, the 2014 season, Brian McCann will no longer be a member of the Atlanta Braves, but the New York Yankees, who have historically been known to gobble up players of the highest talents simply because they can afford to.

Contrary to the popular notion that “everyone hates the Yankees,” I actually don’t.  Sure, it’s sometimes frustrating to hear how the rich keep getting richer, whenever the Yankees secure the services of yet another highly talented free agent, but the fact of the matter is that in spite of their organization’s propensity to believe that championships are acquired by amassing the most talent, regardless of how much it may cost, the Yankees are just as subject to the crap shoot of winning baseball championships as would be teams with far lesser payrolls, like the Oakland A’s, the Tampa Bay Rays, and the Atlanta Braves.  They’ve won just one championship since the start of the millennium.

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Cursive is being phased out?

According to this story, cursive handwriting is being phased out of educational standards, with the constant evolution of technology. Some states are fighting for cursive to be retained and/or brought back, for those whom have already deemed it unnecessary for the children of tomorrow to learn.

Personally, in one hand I’m not the least bit surprised that this is the current state of penmanship. Technology is advancing so steadily, and hardly anyone writes with a pen and paper in general anyone, much less write in cursive. But at the same time, there’s that sentimental, nostalgic part of me that is melancholy towards the notion of change and the idea that things that I grew up learning and utilizing are being phased out now and for the future.

Overall, I don’t think it’s a good idea for cursive to be dropped; it’s not a necessary skill in the future per say, but for historical educational purposes, it’s nice to at least be able to read it, even if it cannot be written. One defender of cursive writing says this one poignant point:

“The Constitution of the United States is written in cursive. Think about that,”

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I bought a Victrola

It’s technically a replica that doesn’t actually play music, but the point remains, I still bought a victrola. I found it cheap on Craigslist completely on a whim, from someone who didn’t live far from where I worked, and I decided that I wanted it. I like the way they look, and I’m a fan of vintage-era stuff like victrolas, and frankly, I think it’s cool to be able to have a victrola on display in my house now.

Okay, and I’ll admit that my infatuation with Mafia Jinx and her flapper dance had something to do with this spontaneous purchase. A little something. Just a little.

So who wants to dress up as, and be my flapper Jinx to take pictures with an actual victrola prop?

Not going to lie, I’m actually really pleased with this impulse buy. Even as replicas, they still sell for like upwards of $150+ on Amazon or eBay.

It makes me happy every time I turn around and see it’s big ass gold horn. I’m not entirely sure what I’m really going to do with it other than have it as a prop for pictures and for it to sit there and look cool, but I’m still glad I have it.