STEVEBLOG Home on the Range

25Feb/120

Tesnowing is the new Tebowing

I totally had one of “those” nights tonight. I felt tired and was ready to go to bed at a decent hour but then I remembered the snow was super primed for snowman making. Before the sleep decision I was thinking of making a snowman or two before going to bed but I really didn’t have good inspiration. Naturally, as I turned off the lights on the way to call it a night (man, it’s tough to not repeat words when I’m totally padding my word count), I got that flash of inspiration; “Te-snowing”.

There was no way I could go to sleep without acting on that idea. So I tossed on my boots and tried to make a somewhat realistic snow Tebow. Naturally, the final result was nowhere near as cool as my imagination, which either means my imagination rocks or my artistic skills suck… I’m going to go with yes. To both. Anyway, the best part is that my camera fell in the snow and just beeps at me now. Luckily, I got one photo off before it went all primadonna on me.

SAM_1613

Te-snowing

I saw a guy unicycling yesterday and I made a snow Tebow today. Thank you Feb-you-airy.

Your pal,

Steve

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3Feb/120

Landmarks

I love Ottawa. The city may be an acquired taste with its frigid Winters (except for this one), humid summers, and strange balance of government/private industry but I have yet to meet a city I where I would rather be. St. John’s came close; I seriously considered trying to get a dock job and never come back. What really makes a place a home is your attachments. You associate your parents’ basement with “home” because of its isolation, poor lighting, and convenient room service. I call Ottawa home because of my attachments to various communities and landmarks. And when it comes to landmarks, one of my most influential landmarks is my “music hedge”.

The “music hedge” is literally a hedge. There is a bus stop beside it (for daytime busses) and it is pretty tall but aside from those it is totally unremarkable. However, this particular hedge is a highlight of all of my late night walks home. The late night bus stop leads me to walk a particular route and this hedge happens to mark the last bend before the straightaway to my house. Distance-wise, it also turns out to take about one song to walk that stretch. As I am sure you realize, the last song you here tends to linger. Do you have to let it linger? It doesn’t matter if you have to let it linger! Anyhoo, the hedge song concludes my night. It could be upbeat, or inflecting, or angry but it ends up framing any of my night’s events.

Now that all that preamble is out of the way, I can finally get to tonight’s hedge song. Tonight was “We will still need a song” by Hawksley Workman. Needless to say, I finished the walk with a huge grin. I have seen this guy in concert twice and plan on seeing him every time he comes to town. Seriously, the dude puts an individual touch on every performance. There are some musicians that I am perfectly happy listening to their albums at home and there are those that make the show an experience.

This city is so full of landmarks for me that it is hard for me to exist elsewhere. I literally work about a 5 minute walk from where I was born and those two things are not even the most influential reasons why I am tied to that area (shout out to Hintonburg!). Some call it the city that fun forgot, but I call it home. Fuck yeah, Ottawa.

Your pal,

Steve

31Jan/120

The Horse and Buggy Lifestyle

I have decided to take a break from my jet setting lifestyle to live like a regular person. I figured it would give me an appreciation of others and might even make me a better man. It must be having some effect considering I went of hippie instead of making a constipation joke. Although, I did just polish off a high fibre smoothie so that could be an issue later. Ok, so it is not entirely my choice but my publicist thought it would be a good idea to try to score some readers by using the New Year’s Resolutions empathy schtick. I’m not usually one to try some hair brained scheme for any pithy reason (editor’s note: by “not usually” he means “always”) but I do like the word “schtick”.

The ground rules had me avoiding bars and cutting back on my spending. Whatever, I thought. No biggie, I thought. Puke, I did… in the toilet. Naturally, the best way to start any period of deprivation is to binge enough so that you won’t have cravings. There is not much point describing the binge night (editor’s note: it was settled out of court), so let’s move on.

24Aug/111

Inventing a new world

Inventing new things is easy, all you need to do is take two unrelated things and combine them. For example, dinosaur + helicopter = dinocopter. It would be completely useless but I am sure that would not stop some chump from investing their life savings on it and hitting up the Dragons’ Den. Inventing useful things are where the money is, however that takes far more time and effort than I am willing to devote. Luckily for you, my court appointed community service forces encourages me to make charitable donations so I am willing to part with potentially the most important innovation since Corn Flakes. In a strange coincidence, my idea was also an accident and will probably lower your sex drive if you think about it too much.

dinocopter

The Dinocopter in all its underwear biting glory.

Hey, we are over here now. Seriously, the dinocopter is almost as lame of a joke as Dr. Rofloctopus. FYI, Dr. Rofloctopus is a lamer joke so you really should not have snickered. Focus people, there is a money earning idea coming your way. Not just any money earning idea either, so forget about your failed lemonade stand (you needed more sugar) and your forgotten children’s education boardgame (it’s spelt board not bored so get that learning out of there). This idea is going to blow your mind because solves massive global problems. What global problems? How about raw material shortages and lack of clean energy for starters. That is not just my opinion either, it is science fact.

drrofloctopus

Dr. Rofloctopus was never good at delivering bad news.

So what is this brilliant idea? Spiders. No, really. I am sitting in my basement, which I think I should rename to “Spiders’ Den” because there are far more of them than me. I am including my ego in this calculation so you can gather there are quite a few spiders. The thing is, spiders are presumably living creatures that need food and energy to live and make webs. However, there is no possible way that there is enough food lying around for them to eat. Seriously, I barely have enough food to keep myself alive let alone a legion of eight legged creatures. I can only draw two conclusions from this; they either drink my blood when I sleep or they don’t need food to function. Since I don’t like the idea of spiders crawling all over me while I sleep, I’m going to assume it is the latter. And thus, the brilliant idea, spiders can be the workforce of the future. Never tiring, always working, these tiny creatures will build our future in ways that only robot apocalyptic visionists could ever imagine. With the help of our friend the arachnid, we can turn the world wide web into a real world wide web.

arachnaphobia

What could possibly go wrong?

I, for one, support our new arachnid overlords.

Your pal,

Steve

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4Apr/111

April Fooled

I have a reputation of being an easy target for April Fool’s Day. My problem is that I embody the unfortunate combination of being a good sport and being incredibly gullible. Knowing this, I approach every April Fool’s with a cautious expectation that I will be pranked. Last year I managed to get off easy with a business trip; although taking two flights and driving in Toronto rush hour twice does sound like a joke at my expense… This year I was planning on taking charge and going on the offensive, which quickly was abandoned when I saw my desk. I greeted it with a bunch of pocket stuff to hold on to and it greeted me with a ransom note.

SAM_0932

I refuse to edit my writing but I will critique ransom notes.

Pre-caffeinated Steve misread the note and assumed that I would be the one getting executed at the end of the day if I did not find the record. I figured that I have had a good run and I would just leave the joke at that. Then I realized that it was Luigi’s life on the line and I said “F#%@ that, I’m getting that green guy back.” For those who are not aware, Luigi and I have a connection. Everyone has their favourite Mario character and that happy go lucky goofball is mine. Many a night, it would be “Pink-a” Luigi and me against the world in frenzied Smash Bros games. Yes, the pink version of Luigi was my trademark. I knew who was responsible for the ransom note (the font selection gave it away), but little did I know that he was only a part of the conspiracy against me.

It is times like this where being an awesomely observant person like me really pays off. I knew there was a record store down the street, which probably would not have the right album, but I just needed an album to show up the prankster. We even had a farewell lunch planned that would have me walk right past the record store. Unfortunately, my brash confidence lead me to leak this important information so when I showed up at the pub for lunch everyone asked me if I found the record. Rookies. Of course I left the record store stop for after lunch but this gave me the perfect out to play all nonchalant.

After lunch I went to the record store and started flipping through in the odd chance I would find the right album. That is when a guy, who I originally assumed worked there but he may just like hanging out there, said it was nice to see a young guy in buying records. I told him I do not even have a turntable and explained the whole situation to him. At that point another guy in the store got my attention; turns out that my friend’s dad just happened to be record shopping in an obscure little store at the exact same time. We caught up for a bit before I refocused on my task and picked up my substitute record and proceeded to the checkout. There were two people behind the counter, neither one being the one who I thought was working there. Thankfully, that guy decided I was the perfect person to discuss conspiracy theories with because it really passed the time before one of the employees decided they wanted my money.

The office greeted me with “what did you get?” questions that I deftly avoided. I even managed to smuggle the record in without anyone really seeing it. There was a message waiting for me in my inbox from the kidnapper:

You know what needs to be done to save him.
tick tick tick ... his time's running out...

-Monsieur Pudding

luigi-in-peril

Game. On.

SAM_0933

Post it to win it.

I made the drop behind the water cooler. Immediately my first suspect showed up with the record and thought my response was brilliant. However, he did not produce Luigi so I sent him back to re-drop the bounty to try and avoid a Dumb and Dumber moment. Shortly after that Luigi was returned to me from the second conspirator. From there I learned there were at least 4 people in on the conspiracy, but one had not been around to see my brave heroics. If you are thinking an evil grin flashed on my face then you would be right.

At that point I thought “What would JIm do?”. I could wrap his desk, send him faxes from the future, or… wait… I hate Jim, he is unnecessarily mean. Yeah, he may be a bit of a dreamboat but there is fog on those shores, bosun. Instead I went with the lazy cover his mouse pointer with tape. But not just tape, this picture too:

luigi_half2

That’sa not-a banana!

Naturally a revenge prank this lame was greeted with a fairly indifferent response. The memorable part was when he checked to make sure I did not mess with the batteries of his mouse. You see, I had replaced his mouse batteries with mini pop-out snakes that totally made him jump. Ok, so I did not even consider messing with his batteries but now that I have thought about it, mini pop-out snakes sound really cool. The end result was the office having a good time, Luigi face being promoted to water bottle status, and Luigi and me being united.

SAM_0934

Together forever! Or at least until I change my shirt.

I have two words to say to you April Fool’s: Hi, cutie. I mean, Bring it!

Your pal,

Steve