The Sledgehammer – Version 2.0

March 15, 2011

Random Thoughts: Spring, Um, Well Somewhere.

Filed under: Random Stuff — Brian Lutz @ 1:52 am

This evening, I’m getting off another (largely uneventful) weekend dogsitting stint for my parents, and trying to get my apartment back in some semblance of order.  I’ve actually got a St. Patrick’s Day Kitsch Roundup post in the works for later on this week (having said that, I suppose I should check and make sure I haven’t done one previously before saying that) but in the meantime, I’ll leave a few random thoughts to keep the Blog warm for a bit. 

  • Something tells me I’m doing this whole “Spring Forward, Fall Back” bit wrong.  Since the time change a couple of days ago, I seem to be getting tired earlier in the evening, rather than later as you’d seem to expect.  I suppose waking up to the Doggy Alarm Clock (see above) for the past couple of days may have something to do with it, but given the fact that on several recent occasions I’ve found myself taking nice long refreshing naps that just happen to have me waking up at 9pm (and subsequently up until 3 or 4) I’m probably just getting my sleep schedule messed up in entirely the wrong direction.  Something tells me throwing an extra three hours of time difference into the mix in a couple of weeks isn’t going to help matters much.  But, as I’ve probably been saying for way too long now, the resulting Fun with Insomnia, Sleep Deprivation, Jet Lag (and in-flight WiFi) should be EPIC.  I’m not sure if that’s meant to be an advertisement or a warning though.  Guess we’ll find out later.

Not naming any names, but...

  • Whoever it was that came up with those miniature shopping cart/basket hybrid things that have been showing up lately at a lot of the stores is a genius.  As a result of spending the last few days over at my parents’ place dogsitting, I found my apartment a bit short on food this evening and had to make a trip over to the grocery store.  I ended up at a store that doesn’t use these (or at least didn’t have any readily available when I was there) and when it became apparent that I had more than a basket’s worth of stuff I was going to need to get, I had to switch over to a cart (incidentally, you know I’m REALLY low on groceries when I have to start actually using a cart in a grocery store that isn’t Costco,) but it seemed the only type of cart they had on hand was the big industrial-strength type you’d typically use for hauling around 5-gallon buckets of mayonnaise at Costco.  Which, quite frankly, looks just a tad silly when you’re pushing one around a store with only a few items in it, which in turn means you have to start looking around for excuses to fill it up, and pretty soon you end up walking out of the store with a lot more food than you planned on.     
  • Today on seeing a news item about the passing of legendary jazz drummer Joe Morello, I went on Zune to listen to some of the stuff he played with the Dave Brubeck Quartet.  Since jazz (Big Band in particular) is still a relatively recent entry to my music listening habits I can’t say that I was familar with any of the songs of the Dave Brubeck Quartet (although at least a couple of them resulted in “Oh, I think I’ve heard that before” moments) but the stuff certainly is interesting.  One of the signatures of the Dave Brubeck Quartet seems to be the use of unusual time signatures and odd rhythms, and it must have taken one heck of a drummer to keep up with all this stuff.  It’s the kind of music you have to pay attention to or you can get yourself completely lost, which is about the last thing you’d expect from easy listening jazz.  One minute you’re listening to a simple little tune, then without warning suddenly the piano will be playing in a completely different meter than the drummer, who apparently didn’t notice.  I know that if I was ever trying to play this stuff something like a random meter change would completely throw me off into the proverbial weeds, and yet Mr. Morello just keeps drumming like nothing ever happened.  I suppose I really have a lot to learn if I’m ever going to figure all this stuff out.  Fortunately, being able to pick up whatever you happen to be interested in and being able to listen to it right away is one of the nice things about a ZunePass.
  • Speaking of jazz, apparently living a block away from Meydenbauer Center means that I’ll be within easy walking distance of all the main performances of the Bellevue Jazz Festival at the beginning of June.  I should probably consider going to some of the performances.

  • In other goings on around town, a couple of weeks ago I headed out from the office to grab some lunch, and found this scene out in the parking lot near my office.  Apparently Food Network was in town filming a segment for an upcoming episode of Meat and Potatoes at the Skillet Street Food trailer that wanders into the neighborhood occasionally.  I’ve tried the place once some time ago, and the food was good but a bit too expensive ($13 for a burger and fries.)  Partially because I’ve been wanting to try it again and partially because of sheer morbid curiosity, I decided to hang around a bit to try to get some food, but I quickly learned that trying to get lunch from the place with all the TV cameras around it seems to be a good way to starve, and after about 20 minutes in line they ran out of food for the day.  Not sure when the episode is going to air, but I’m sure I’ll find out soon enough.  Incidentally, I tried going back when they came around a week later, but when I got there a small kitchen fire had put them out of commission.  I still need to give the place a second try at some point, but maybe next time I’ll need to bring my own fire extinguisher.

  • Um, are there any teenagers out there who could translate this?  I haven’t got a freakin’ clue what any of these phones are supposed to be saying here.  All I know is that somewhere out there, there’s an English teacher who saw this PSA on the back of a bus and is now off in a dark corner weeping for the impending downfall of civilization.   

  • And speaking of disclaimers, since when do we need a disclaimer for this?  I suppose it is better than having the whole thing plastered with some sort of “WARNING: Contains sodium, keep 500 yards away at all times” warnings, but you’d think most of the pretzel-buying public would be able to figure out the bit where you need to have salt available if you wish your pretzels to be salted. 

  • OK, I think I’m ready for Winter to be done with by now.  How about you?  Almost there, just another week until Spring arrives.  Hang in there.
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