The Litos

Well, my roommate took off today for what should be a six month stint on board a ninety-eight foot yacht on it's way to Acapulco via Cancun and the Panama Canal. Except for the whole baby-sitting rich people aspect I'm pretty jealous. Not too long ago it's the kind of thing I would have been doing and none of you would have batted an eyelash.

Cat 4 Amy
Yup, that's Amy.

Unfortunately, I don't have too much time to enjoy my solidarity. The flights haven't been booked yet for my next work trip but I should be leaving September tenth to fly to Amsterdam. The plan is for me to then train it to Rotterdam and work at a consolidation warehouse that we have there. Then I'll fly to Hamburg about a week later and get to enjoy a rental car and a hotel for about ten days before the vessel actually gets to Hamburg. I'm sure there will be plenty of hard work to be done but the hours shouldn't be nearly as punishing as the all day shifts we work during dry dock.

The availability (as they call it) lasts about two weeks or so and then I'll probably be in a hotel again (or aboard the next vessel being worked on right after ours) for another couple of days in order to clean up all the tools and extra materials that we always have. Probably be back in the Miami area by October thirteenth.

All in all I'm looking forward to the trip and the experience. This job is definitely going to be a lot hairier than the last couple of dry docks I worked on but I'll be part of a proper logistics team this time and it shouldn't be as stressful. Alas I won't be able to travel in Europe after the job is done. The ship is steaming back across the Atlantic right after we're done and we need to come back here and set up cranes and crews in order to load the final materials and provisions before the vessel makes her maiden voyage with her new name and revitalized hotel.

It's still incredibly hot down here. Go figure. I've made the obvious realization that it's not the day time temp that gets me but the fact that it doesn't cool down at night. . . at all. Usually the weather predictions show about a three degree drop in temperature at night, with no change in humidity. Awesome.


By Popular Demand

The aforementioned, and highly fashionable, mannequins in my living room.

Entertainment Center?
No comment.

And of course the ever-riveting shot of my place of employment.

Yo Trabajo Aqui

I doubt that I can even begin to share with you how depressing this post is.
Next time I'll just put a bunch of dead puppies on the screen.

(ed. note: oooh, that might not go over so well. good thing i'm too far away for anyone i know who reads this to come and hurt me. just try it.)

Ten points to anyone who can tell me where these next lines come from.

Man on plane: "Who's flying this thing anyway?"
Same man answering his own question after looking into cockpit:
"It's a penguin! . . . And he's been drinking!!"
Penguin answering man in angry tone: "Wah, wah, wah, wah."
Man: "Wait a minute. . . penguins can't fly! PENGUINS CAN'T FLY!!"



Meaning that it's finally done or at least more dunn(er). I know that these things I have to say are neither thrilling and/or riveting but at least some people who read this will know what's up before I talk to them next and they have no idea where (or who) I am. Cheers to those keeping up. I wish you would provide me with similar info on your lives so I don't fall victim to the "no idea" crowd.

Just an informal invite to. . . um. . . everyone. I suppose I should say almost everyone since technically "everyone" with a net connection can read this, fools that they are for wasting their time. Anywho. My formal invite is to Florida, the Fountain of Youth State, because I am finally settled in my living arrangements. I've got a place to myself and there's even an extra bed or two. Next six months (at least) I should be by myself at the address I have previously provided everyone via email and anyone/everyone is welcome to come partake of the beach and the, uh, beach.

Disclaimer: Due to work restrictions the author of said aforementioned invite can not (and will not) guarantee his actual presence at time of said visits. I wish my work travel schedule was solid but it's rather spongy and constantly changing instead. My apologies, but by agreeing to come visit me you will actually have to give up all rights to seeing me. But feel free to use the apartment and the car. The fridge costs extra.

Spent but not spendy.


Doin' Stuff Is Good

Finally kickin' a little good ol' logistical action at work the past few days. Okay I suppose that Friday doesn't count as being within the last couple of days but if you're really gonna nit-pick once you find out which days I'm talking about you can just go somewhere else on The Man's Internet.

Have been getting to do something called out-port loading. The lingo still doesn't completely make sense to me but essentially rather than traffic all kinds of material through our warehouse here in Hollywood, FL they just send me to a local warehouse (not to be corn-fused with a local whorehouse) and I get to tag pallets and get 'em loaded into containers in the right order with the right documentation. And this is now what I consider exciting in my life. Super.

I guess I haven't written about the upcoming job on the Azamara Quest yet. That's the revitalization that I'll be working on in Hamburg next month. And before you ask, a revitalization differs from a normal dry docking cause it's longer and therefore more work is done (go figure). And if you want to know what a dry docking is. . . look it up. Anyway, to give you an idea of the scope of this project; we will receive approximately one-hundred and twenty containers, each twenty feet in length and usually container ten pallets worth of material. The material in these containers will be coming from all over the world, literally. We're going to have to load about eight to twelve containers on board the vessel each day and this is a small cruise ship. Only holds seven-hundred and ten passengers. I suppose it's hard to explain all the variables in one paragraph so I shouldn't have tried. But suffice to say it's things like this that keep me employed.

And now back to the point I was making before the last paragraph; ou-port loading gets me outta the office to learn new places and faces down here. And speakin' of getting out I did manage to have a little happy hour(s) with a few of the more congenial people from the office last Friday. Not too bad of a time and nobody even got hurt. . . which always seems to happen when I'm all set to have a really good time. (Flagstaffian's can think of Keegan (sp?) face-planting off his bike this past summer on TC's birthday right when fifteen of us were headed off for the bars. He was doing all of about zero-point-five miles an hour and cut his front wheel to hard. . . heh.)

So, some things are looking up and others are just looking around wondering where the good times are to be had. Looks like the roommate will be around till the end of the month and then I guess the boat's headed to Cancun. . . assuming there's a Cancun left to head to. Guess I should check Dean's progress before I write that. Oh well.

Off to a fairly early night for the first time in a while. That's a good thing. As all my biking buddies say, "Keep the rubber side down." I guess that'll just have to refer to the soles of our sneakers or boots for the rest of us mortals.

Wishing you all good times and psychedelic toads.
Which both happen to be in short supply down here.


So, uh. . . I Guess That Settles It?

So the water and power will be transferred to my name on Friday. Does that mean that the place is all mine at that point?

Of course not.

So the roommate got the job on the private yacht. . . 'cause life is just that hard. Of course, "they" can't leave just yet (two captains and her) cause of the four major storms going on in the region. Of course my version of the weather on the Internet only shows three major storms in the whole world and only two in our region but since when have I been a meteorologist? Of course, never. Of course you can't use the same two words to start ALL your sentences. Of course, it IS fun to try. But of course the part that's the most fun is changing the grammar at the beginning of each sentence 'cause you can't remember the grammatical rule that governs such nonsensical and useless things in this world.

Of course, don't tell Mom or The Candeeman I wrote that. . . . aww hell, don't tell them I wrote anything at all or the red will start flyin'.

Anywhooters, I thought you should all know that I now live in a part of the world that concerns itself with the weather patterns on other continents. That's right, Ladies and Gentlemen, here in the SoFlo we get weather reports for Western Africa. . . and that's awesome.

One tropical storm just came off that coast and while it's slated to pass us on the last satellite projection that I viewed we all know that those babies respect nothing unless it's global cooling, so I guess I better go stock up on vodka, and. . . um, water? Yeah, water. Ooh, and goldfish. You can't wade through your parking lot to go driving during a hurricane if you ain't got your strength up with goldfish.

No bull, there's a guy I work with who's a true "local" and he waits out the hurricanes by driving thru them, and I suppose into them. Of course, he's got an F-350, quad-cab, dually pick-um-up truck so maybe he feels it's his right. . . or his duty. And when I say local you should note that he was born down the street from where we work. Maybe seven percent of the population down here can say that. . . but that's only cause there's no hospital down the street so it's not a popular place to birth a child.

Suppose I should shuffle off to bed. But a final word of warning. . . dissing shuffle board can bring serious physical consequences to one's person. These people down here carry canes. . . and they know how to use them.

ed. note: I can't believe the spellchecker didn't accept SoFlo! The world's gone wrong. Het orslwd ogne gorwn.


99% Chance of Change

Just a little ditty to inform any party that may be concerned with my mental health that my roommate is ninety-nine percent sure that she is going to be taking a job on board a private yacht that is sailing to the Western side of Mexico via the Panama Canal for six months. I have tentatively agreed to continue to reside at her place while she's gone for just a little bit more money. I am fully aware that I might be asking for trouble but I've been looking at places I can afford on my own and especially when they come fully furnished they are little boxes for way too much money.

Back Yard

Can't pass up the chance to have a 2/2 all to my self for a while. I might send a few pics once I get all the mannequins and other weird shit down off the walls and various other places. Don't ask, I've been living in a strange situation for a while now.

Point is that change is a foot which seems to be how I like it. Now if I can just make myself wait a little longer till I pull the trigger on that big screen/surround sound system I've had my eye on. . .

Here's to change, and to Fridays. . .



Never seen a Tasmanian Devil. Check one out below.

Two bros, myself and our pop all caught this together down in Tasmania. Pretty gnarly creatures. They eat everything; hair, bone, meat. . . down the hatch. They're chompin' on a tasty wallabee leg in the video. Make sure you have the sound up cause if you catch a good growl out of one you'll know why the cartoon character sounds that way.

I was looking through some old pics on my computer today and found myself wondering what happened to sitting down with family and friends and the ol' slide projector after a big trip and lettin'em all rip? Granted these days you'll be streaming a slide show from your laptop to your big screen tv but still. . . when was the last time you got together with friends, drinks and a long picture session.

I know, I know. . . if the pictures don't move it's not nearly as fun. This post being no exception.


Is Change Always Good?

Most of you who know me obviously know that for the past five years or so I'm almost constantly looking forward to the next big change. If it's not a new job or a different place to live then it's a different car or a new bottle of vodka. On second thought scratch that last one cause once again, those that know me also know that vodka doesn't bring about a very large change in me very often. (Now if we're talking about The Capt'n then it's a different story. Especially New Years Eve quite a few years ago out at Harms' parent's place. . . if you don't know then don't ask.)

Anyway, I don't need to move to a different part of the country this time but I have decided I need to change my living situation just a bit. My current roommate is a self-described lizard when it comes to the heat down here in So Flo, which promptly caused me to associate myself with being a polar bear. . . a bit out of his Element, though still driving one. Point being that even though I dislike always living in the a/c I still need it in order to sleep; in order to sit through that lovely three hour meeting I have the next day and most importantly to not FALL ASLEEP during said meeting. Rookie, rookie mistake. Especially when you're in a room full of people making AT LEAST five, large figures more than you.

So, told my roommate I was moving out at the end of the month and started looking around a few days ago. Found a few places right away that would work but nothing that blew my flip-flops off. (How often do you get to write the words flip and flop together?) AND THEN things start to happen. Just as I find a decent enough house with a quasi-normal enough guy living in it my roommate comes through with a barn burner. She might move to Puerto Rico and open a restaurant/bar with a friend of hers. AND (here's the kicker) she would want to rent her whole place out to me for just a hundred bucks more a month (+ all the utilities, of course). Not a bad deal. Two bed, two bath, fully furnished, plenty of room for friends and family anytime and easily within my price range.

As it happens the guy at this other house has to wait to hear from a recently dumped-out-of-the-blue-after-a-three-year-relationship buddy of his so I'm in a mini-holding pattern. . . with a really small packet of peanuts and a thimble full of beer. . . until he hears from his friend and until my current roomie goes down to P.R. next week and checks things out. Guess I'll get another post up when things pan out, thin out or just fall out.

And if this post wasn't long enough, or funny enough, for you then you've got to check out the most recent gem at Bad News Hughes' site. Link upper right. Warning, his site is definitely told in a no-holds barred kind of way whereas mine is told in sort of a no-bar-holds-me-down kind of way. Whatever that means.