Friday, April 30, 2010

:: Poor efforts ::

In the last month or so I've noticed a disturbing lack of new blog posts from my esteemed blogroll on the left - namely Christene, Kelsey, Meghan and Lanette.

Now, there are other blogs I link to as well – Jason Mulgrew, The FYC – that have been pretty delinquent lately too, but I don't know those people, so I feel bad calling them out. Besides, Mulgrew just wrote a fucking book, so if he wants to not blog for awhile, give the dude a break.

But as for the rest of you... well, I know you all personally and feel quite fit to point out your blogging inadequacies. And let me tell you, your lack of effort is shameful. 

Because it's a slow afternoon here at the always-prolific/constantly updated/fan favourite Classic Times, I took a few minutes to crunch some numbers, math being my specialty.

Not including this post, here are some startling numbers: 

Last post: April 6; Classic Times posts since that date: 8 (7 plus 1 guest post)

Last post: March 31; Classic Times posts since: 10

Last post: March 21 and then she closed up shop altogether; Classic Times posts since: 16

Last post: April 25 (But before that, no posts since April 9; Classic Times posts since April 9: 12

So there you have it. And I don't want to hear any whining about lack of internet or moving or quitting sob-stories or any of that crap. I didn't post for over a week because I was in Vegas, and then when I returned there was no Internet at the house for 4 days (technical difficulties) and I still managed to out-write the shit out of all of you.

Consider yourselves called out.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

:: The Pizza Rules ::

There are countless number of things I take issue with – seriously, try and keep track – and one that has largely flown under the radar is about pizza. Now, it may not shock you that a man of my, uh, carriage has opinions on pizza (maybe it only shocks you that it's taken so long for such opinions to bubble over) but be that as it may, what I really have a problem with is "pizza" with non-traditional toppings.

I put that last pizza in quotations because a pizza with feta cheese, lettuce, shrimp, or some god-awful white sauce instead of regular tomato-based pizza sauce is not real pizza. I'm sorry, but it just isn't. (Noted exception: BP's perogy pizza)

This little rant came to fruition last night when Christene and I headed down to the Cloverdale BP for dinner. We hemmed and hawed over a pizza – I wanted one with about 54 kinds of meat on it; Christene was less enthusiastic – until decided on a compromise: a pizza which had a couple kinds of traditional meats (pepperoni, ham) as well as a couple veggies. It also had shrimp.

Needless to say, this pizza was not good. Not so much because of the shrimp, but because of an utter lack of cheese, which meant all the toppings fell off the pizza when you tried to lift it out of the pan. But the shrimp didn't help. It just felt... out of place.

So while our subpar dinner was not the direct result of the shrimp, it caused me to consider all the pizza offerings which we had to choose from on the menu. Among them – the items listed above, plus one with pulled pork, another with peanut sauce and sesame seeds, and other strange concoctions that I cannot remember right now.

Whatever happened to pepperoni, bacon, mushrooms, green peppers and cheese? I mean, is that what we've come to here – we're so bored with traditional food that we have to put pulled pork and fucking shellfish on pizza to make it new and interesting? Listen, I like pulled pork. Like shrimp and feta cheese, too. But not in a pizza. When I order a pizza, I want it to look like a fucking pizza. And more importantly, taste like a pizza. With plenty of cheese.

Stick with what works, pizza chefs. You're fucking up a good thing (Again, the perogy pizza notwithstanding. That shit's delicious.)

In conclusion: Less this, more this.

Monday, April 26, 2010

:: Something only Christene and the Canucks themselves are happy about ::

Now that the 'Nucks have dispatched the L.A. Kings in six games, it was announced today that no matter what the second-round matchup turns out to be, the Canucks' second-round series will not begin until Friday.

Today, in case you were not aware, is only Monday.

So once again, Canuck fans have to sit around twiddling their hockey-gloved thumbs – or more likely, over-analyzing the shit out of the next round – while, on a positive note for one girlfriend, Christene gets her boyfriend's full attention for an amazing four consecutive days.

(Except Wednesday. I have baseball.)

Friday, April 16, 2010

:: A big, fat problem ::

Recently, I bought a new pair of Volcom white/blue plaid-type shorts. They are of a certain inch size – the same size I always wear – yet they are slightly too big, thus requiring a belt.

I don't have a good belt to go with them though, so I've been searching for a white/black/blue/ belt to go with the shorts. Today, I found an appropriate belt – same size, also made by Volcom.

And it was too small. So I'm too skinny for the shorts, but too fat for the belt. 

Thanks a lot Volcom. Looks like it's a string of twine for me.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

:: Minor annoyance of the day/week/month ::

In my line of work, we have two deadlines per week, Tuesday mornings and Thursday afternoons. The exact same times every week.

One of my colleagues here has worked here for 23 years. Almost every Thursday for the past month or so, he asks me the same question:

"So... when's deadline today?"

Part of his asking is simply because he can't get enough of talking to people – he's the same guy who tries to rope people into conversations as they're about to leave for the day – but another part of it is that he simply doesn't know.

If, after more than 20 years in the exact same job at the exact same place, I am unable to remember on a week-to-week basis one of the primary tenants of my profession, it's probably time to look for a new job in a new line of work.

I mean, 20 god damn years.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

:: Get lost ::

Now that I live in Cloverdale, I have a very simple drive to work. Turn right off our side-street onto the main road. Drive 32 blocks south. Turn right again. Drive 24 blocks. Turn right into parking lot. 


But today was different. Today was ridiculous.

After my initial right turn onto the main street, there was a police incident of some sort – likely an accident, but I couldn't really see – and it involved about four different cop cars and the street being blocked off. There was only one detour option – turn right into a subdivision, and wind your way around until you find another main street.

The only problem? I've never had a need, in my 5-6 weeks in Cloverdale, to drive through any of these subdivisions. At therefore, I had no idea that they were filled with so many god-damn cul-de-sacs, dead-ends, and streets that turn the wrong direction from where I wanted to go. It was freaking stupid. And as such, I spent far too long winding through quiet little suburban streets, doing three-point turns at dead-ends, and pulling u-turns until I finally found a damn street that took me where I wanted to go.

And I was 5 minutes late for work as a result. 

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

:: Quotes ::

It's been a long time since a quotes-only post, so consider this catching up....

"I want to go to a pirate-themed seafood restaurant. You never see those anymore – that's what's wrong with the world." - Christene, pinpointing the real ills of society.

After Ian came to Davy and Colleen's Saturday with a girl everybody knew in high school...
Chris: Remember that time, in Grade 10, there was that party at her parents' house and that little bottle of booze went missing and there was that great big thing about what happened to it and who stole it and all that?
Ian: Yeah?
Chris: Turns out I drank it.

"It's times like this I wish I had a catheter in, so I wouldn't have to get up." - Christene, not wanting to get up off the couch to pee.

"I feel smarter when Sean's around." - Bucholtz

"I just want to make out with people. Preferably foreign." - Meghan, on her goal for the evening during our journey downtown one day during the Olympics.

Tara: If you could change two things about about yourself, what would they be, and why?
Jer: I'd get a new wife, how about that? A wife-ectomy, if you will.

Friday, April 09, 2010

Happy Birthday to an Awesome Dude

Guest post by Mike

Tomorrow, April 10th is one of those special days that should be celebrated by all humanity, for a Great Man was born on this date.

A man well known for his friendly attitude, his dry, sarcastic wit, and his sense of humor, but also for his great capacity for caring, sensitivity, and patience.

Personally I feel like I've known him my entire life, and honestly even though he's a little older than me I am constantly impressed at how hard he pushes himself and his many accomplishments.

If you are reading this blog, you know this man and count him amongst your closest friends. So join me everyone in wishing him a wonderful, glorious, well-deserved special day!

Happy birthday Steven Seagal.

Happy birthday.

(oh and apparently it's also some other guy's birthday, so happy birthday to him too.)
:: A long wait ::

Ninety-year-old retiring* Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens is old enough that he saw his first baseball game before the Great Depression, and while he confirms here the long-held myth that Babe Ruth did in fact call his shot, the saddest part of that story is the fact that, barring a an absolute miracle, Steven will not live to see his beloved Chicago Cubs ever win it all.

Non-sports fan probably scoff and wonder what the hell the big deal is – it's just sports, after all – but this, to me, is incredibly sad. I mean, 90+ years is an awful long time, and obviously the Cubbies got close a few times only to fall short – paging Steve Bartman – but still, more than 90 years without a break going your team's way is really, really tough to think about.

I can't imagine being 90 years old, still waiting for the Vancouver Canucks to win the Stanley Cup. It could very well happen, mind you – we're at 40 years and counting, Canuck fans – but I have to think that, over the next 60, something good is going to happen. 

It's got to, right?**

*Just retiring at 90? Really? If I made judge money I'd be out by 55.

**Want to play a fun game with yourself? If you aren't worried about "jinxing" your team, take a minute and imagine what it will actually feel like if the Canucks won the Stanley Cup this year. Just think about being in that room watching TV, probably with all your buddies, as time ticks down in a deciding game, with Vancouver ahead. Imagine Roberto Luongo lifting the cup over his head. Imagine Robson Street. Imagine the looting (maybe). I get worked up just thinking about it. It's painful to think about though, because who knows when it will happen.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

:: Countdown ::

Countdowns to various events are usually Kelsey's milieu but I thought I'd steal a page from her book this morning because it's less that two weeks until we go to Las Vegas, my all-time favourite city.

11 days, to be exact.

Vegas is always awesome, but I especially like going with people who have never been before, because - with my friends anyway - it usually exceeds expectations. For example, when we drove there from Phoenix about this time last year, Chris spent most of the drive down Las Vegas Blvd with his head almost out the window, like some kind of dog, staring up at all the gigantic casinos, before saying something like, "This buildings are so fucking huge it's almost overwhelming... and people are drinking on the street!"

Like I said, it exceeds expectations usually.

So yeah, 11 days. For those of you (Chris, Jenna, Kelsey, Scott, Katie, etc) who are not going, for very valid reasons (no time off, saving money, living 3,000 miles away, knocked up) well, that's all well and good, but you have 11 days to change your mind and make an irrational, likely financial harming decision to come with us.

Just saying.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

:: I'm not an idiot ::

When you and your friends have known each other as long as my friends and I have, there ends up being a million different things you end up ragging each other about, constantly. You know, that Bucholtz is dumb (even though he's really not) or that Sean is the real-life version of Pigpen (likely only partly true) or that Chris is an asshole (mostly true).

It's all in good fun. I mean, if you can't bust the balls of the person you've known for 15+ years, whose balls can you bust?

And then there's me. I have accumulated plenty of these so-called stereotypes (for lack of a better term) too. You know, that I can't/shouldn't be allowed to do anything mechanical because I work behind a desk and not in a tradesperson or tradesperson-esque capacity.

Or that for most of my life, I didn't exactly get a lot of chicks.

Or that any story I start won't finish for at least 20 minutes.

You know, the usual kind of stuff that friends give you shit about because a) it's usually always funny and b) nobody is going to get offended by it.

It's all in good fun, and it's all fair game. I rarely get bothered by it, but lately it's been happening to me with increasing regularity, and it's getting annoying. Case in point: Friday at Ian's.

I tried to tell some story which was (probably) hilarious, and it was not a long story. But of course, knowing my penchant for long stories, everyone had to mock it by piping in with a million questions, interrupting me every two seconds.

"What time was this?"

"What were you doing before that?

"What colour was the car the person was driving?"

"Sorry, this was at what time again?"

In the end, I just said "Fuck you guys" and didn't finish the story. And then, later on, the jabs continued, especially when the subject of real estate was brought up. I can't remember all the details - we were drinking a lot - but basically, the general consensus was that the idea of buying a rowhouse without a strata was stupid, because what if the roof/walls/etc collapse?

Nothing I could say was enough to satisfy anybody and - again, likely because of the booze - I actually started to get pretty pissed off for a minute, until the subject was changed. And I'll save everyone the reasons behind why no strata is no big deal (See jerks? I can shorten a story!), except to say that it works in Eastern Canada and Europe, and last I checked, people are cool with it. (editor's note: I haven't actually checked. I didn't make any calls or anything).

The point I have to make then, is of a wider scope. Whether it comes to buying this house, or telling a story, hammering a nail or whatever it is, I take issue with the fact that the general consensus is that I'm somehow incapable of doing it, and doing it properly.

So just a reminder: I'm a smart person - graduated high school, college and everything (almost with honours!) - and I have a job and have managed to make a better-than-decent living, and I have not ended up destitute and wearing potato sacks for clothes (yet), so I've obviously done some things right. Maybe not a lot of things, but some things, sure.

And while I'm not going to get into a boozy, in-depth argument over the merits of the strata system, or whether or not a 30-year warranty on the roof covers only the shingles or the workmanship too, nor am I going to explain how - if years from now, my neighbours don't want to join forces, sans-strata to replace a needs-replacing roof - I can just replace my section because all the houses are actually separate when you get down to it, I am going to ask this: Considering my common sense, don't you think I'd check into all these so-called red flags to make sure that they're actually, you know, not red flags, before I wrote a deposit cheque for $20,000?

The benefit of the doubt is all I'm asking for here.

(As for those who say I can't tell a short story, I'm willing to concede that point. This blog post, after all, is 722 words, and I could've summed it all up in five: Get off my back, please.)