I Want to be a Loser

I have known for years that I needed to lose some (or even a lot of) weight. For some reason though, pesky things like better health simply were not enough to motivate me to give it a serious run. However, I have now found my motivation: cold, hard, cash.

That’s right, the Treasure Valley is having it’s own version of The Biggest Loser. The fee is $50 to enter. The first weigh-in will be this weekend. Then there will be monthly weigh-ins for the next 6 months. The biggest loser (by percentage) will take home the grand prize of $3,000. I really want to win the big prize, but even if I “just” lose weight, it is well worth the $50 entry fee.

I’ll keep you posted with my progress here with each weigh-in.

Idaho Special Edition Barbie Dolls

You may recall a previous post in which we announced that Mattel was making special edition Barbies for Oregon. Just in time for Christmas, we are now pleased to announce the release of limited-edition Barbie Dolls for the Idaho market.

Nampa Barbie

She comes with an assortment of Kate Spade Handbags, a Lexus SUV, a long-haired foreign dog named Honey and a million dollar farm home. Available with or without tummy tuck and face lift. Workaholic Ken sold only in conjunction with the augmented version.

Melba Barbie


The modern day homemaker Barbie is available with Ford Wind star Minivan and matching feedstore outfit. She gets lost easily and has no full-time occupation. Traffic jamming cell phone sold separately for traveling.

Garden City Barbie

This recently paroled Barbie comes with a 9mm handgun, a Ray Lewis knife, a Chevy with dark tinted windows, and a meth Lab Kit. This model is only available after dark and must be paid for in cash (preferably small, untraceable bills) unless you are a cop, then we don’t know what you are talking about.

Boise Barbie

This yuppie Barbie comes with your choice of BMW convertible or Hummer H2. Included are her own Starbucks cup, credit card and country club membership. Also available for this set are Shallow Ken and Private School Skipper. You won’t be able to afford any of them.

Challis Barbie

This pale model comes dressed in her own Wrangler jeans two sizes too small, a NASCAR t-shirt, tweety bird tattoo on her shoulder and no teeth. She has a six-pack of Bud light and a Hank Williams Jr. CD set. She can spit over 5 feet and kick mullet-haired Ken’s butt when she is drunk. Purchase her pickup truck separately and get a confederate flag bumper sticker absolutely free.

Sun Valley Barbie


This collagen injected, rhino plastic Barbie wears a leopard print outfit and drinks cosmopolitans while entertaining friends. Percocet prescription available as well as newly built high rise condo.

Buhl Barbie


This tobacco-chewing, brassy-haired Barbie has a pair of her own high-heeled sandals with one broken heel from the time she chased beer-gutted Ken out of Jerome Barbie’s house. Her ensemble includes low-rise acid-washed jeans, fake fingernails, and a see-through halter-top. Also available with a mobile home.

Jerome Barbie


This doll is made of actual tofu. She has long straight brown hair, arch-less feet, hairy armpits, no makeup and Birkenstocks with white socks. She prefers that you call her Willow. She does not want or need a Ken doll, but if you purchase two Twin Falls Barbies and the optional Subaru wagon, you get a rainbow flag bumper sticker for free.

Kuna Barbie


This Barbie now comes with a stroller and 2 infant dolls. Optional accessories include a GED and bus pass. White boy Gangsta Ken and his 1979 Caddy were available, but are now very difficult to find since the addition of the infant.

Idaho Falls Barbie


She’s perfect in every way, mainly due to the high levels of antidepressants in her system. We don’t know where Ken is because he’s always at church meetings.

 

Also don’t miss Oregon Special Edition Barbie Dolls.

Birthday Concert Addendum

Despite the tsunami of negativity in my previous post (Concert Rants), the concert was actually awesome. I didn’t include the most awesome thing of all that happened. It’s a long story, but we had to take separate vehicles to get there. While waiting for the rest of the family, the Older Daughter dropped by the sponsoring radio station’s booth and signed up for a contest to win an upgrade to front-and-center seats.

Well, as we were about to be seated, she got a call that she had won! So she and The Wife sat in the front row and had a great time. It was an added treat for The Wife on her birthday.

Concert Rants

Several nights ago, the whole family took The Wife to the Reba McEntire and Kelly Clarkson concert at Taco Bell Arena. This was to celebrate her (mumble)th birthday. It was a great concert. We’ve have been Reba fans for years and Kelly Clarkson is also quite a talented performer.

However, attending this concert reminded me of some of the things that really bother me about the whole concert experience. Mostly, I’m reminded that people suck. Anyway, here are a few of the things that bug the heck out of me:

  • Okay, does the security check really accomplish anything other than slowing me down, driving ticket prices higher, and giving the ignorant a false sense of security? The Wife had to open up her bag, but the revolver I had in my jacket pocket went completely unnoticed. (No, I didn’t really have a weapon. But I would have gotten through with no problem with one.)
  • What’s with these people that have to leave their seats like 57 times during the concert? They paid $60 to see this thing and they are leaving every 5 minutes for food, drinks, potty breaks, or whatever. Sit your butt down and watch the concert. I’ll give you just one courtesy coupon to leave your seat over and above intermission.
  • Then there’s those three gals (yes, call me sexist but they usually are of the female persuasion) sitting behind me at every concert that talk and giggle the whole time. Again…you paid $60 for this experience. Shut up and watch.
  • Oh, and then there’s that guy that can do the really loud fingers-in-the-mouth whistle thing. He always seems to do it as I turn an ear his way and it is so loud that it physically hurts. I’m always tempted to break this guy’s fingers. But maybe I’m just jealous because I don’t know how to do it.
  • How about that one lady? You know her. She’s in her late 60s, maybe early 70s. She has her fingers in her ears the whole time and is scowling over how loud it is. Hellooooo. Concerts are loud. Get over it. It wasn’t a good concert unless your ears rang for several days.
  • Okay, let me reiterate an earlier point. You paid 60 hard-earned dollars to attend this event. You’ve gone through the hassle of parking, long walks, security checkpoints, as well as the other pinheads I’ve already discussed above. After all this, you decide to leave before the concert is over? What form of insanity are you in the grips of? For $60, security will be dragging me out at about 2am after the place is all cleaned up and they are trying to lock the place up and go home.
  • Finally, what is with this stupid encore fiasco? What a stupid, contrived little game we all play. I imagine that in the early days of concerts (whenever that was) that the crowd loved a performance so much, that their excessive applause genuinely made an act decide to sing a few more songs. But now, we all know that it’s a given. The house lights don’t go up when the act says goodbye. More importantly, they have not yet played the 2-4 songs that we really want to hear. Cut the crap and just do the concert. Let’s end the encore game.

It really was a good concert, but I had to get these things off my chest. They’ve been bugging me literally for decades. Thanks for listening!

Lithia Sucks

I have never hesitated to use my blog as a sounding board to point out when a business just sucks. Boise Goodlife recently experienced horrible customer service when buying a car at Lithia. From being treated rudely by the salesman, to taking 2 hours to complete paperwork, to having a car that was not detailed, to a missing key and owners manual to boot, it was a nightmare experience.

But here’s the one that bugs me the most: They told her that they don’t fill the gas tank on a used car that is at least 1/4 full. Is that not outrageous? It’s standard practice for major dealerships to fill the tank of any car purchased–from the high-end models to the ugly duckling on the lot. Stay away from these jerks.

Pay it Foward

We try not to get too sappy here at DITH. However, this simple story of selflessness is touching and deserves a wider audience. Please take a moment to read “A flight of compassion“. It reminds us all that we to think of the needs of other sometimes rather than just ourselves.

Get to Know Me Better

Rick tagged me on this meme. Thanks man. Let’s get ‘er done.

The rules are:

1. The rules of the game get posted at the beginning.
2. Each player answers the questions about themselves.
3. At the end of the post, the player then tags 5-6 people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know they’ve been tagged and asking them to read your blog.
4. Let the person who tagged you know when you’ve posted your answer.

1) What was I doing 10 yrs ago?

10 years ago the Older Daughter was 5 and the Younger Daughter was just 5 months old. I remember attending the Older Daughter’s dance recital that year–very cute. We were just settling into our previous house. I also started a custom software development business with a buddy–it didn’t work out.

2) What are 5 things on my to-do list for today (not in any particular order):

  1. Post to my blog (check)
  2. Get some laundry done (in progress)
  3. Check on the status of a job application (check–no answer yet…grrr)
  4. Do some more work on our business website (probably not going to happen)
  5. Blog surfing (check)

3) Snacks I enjoy:

  • Cheez-Its
  • soybeans
  • beef jerkey
  • popcorn

4) Things I would do if I were a billionaire:

  • Build a nice new house on our ranch
  • Buy a monster motor home and travel
  • Do charity work

5) Three of my bad habits:

  1. Staying up too late
  2. Procrastinating
  3. Not eating right

6) 5 places I have lived:

  1. Lebanon, Oregon
  2. Ontario, Oregon
  3. Cheney, Washington
  4. Boise, Idaho
  5. Caldwell, Idaho

7) 5 jobs I have had:

  1. Petroleum Transfer Technician (some people call it a Service Station Attendant)
  2. Clerk-Typist
  3. Computer Lab Consultant
  4. Software Engineer
  5. Database Administrator

8 ) 5 peeps I wanna know more about:

  1. Bekki
  2. Jon
  3. Bonnie
  4. Allison
  5. smysore

Boise: A Terrorist Target?

According to a recent study of 132 urban areas in the United States, Boise, Idaho is the 10th most vulnerable to a bio-terrorist attack. The study was funded by the Department of Homeland Security and headed up by University of Arizona mathematics professor Walter W. Piegorsch. Boise was the only city west of Texas to make the top 10 list. That’s right, cities like Seattle, Portland, and Los Angeles are not considered highly vulnerable–at least according to this study.

The three factors considered in the study included social aspects, natural hazards, and the construction of the city. What’s important to realize is that this study measured the vulnerability of cities to attacks–not the probability.

Boise has three large dams upstream. 2 of them are earth-filled: Lucky Peak and Anderson Ranch; Arrowrock is concrete. With the Boise River running through the heart of the city, the failure of these dams (whether intentional or accidental) could devastate the downtown district of the city and many surrounding cities.

The metro area is largely surrounded by federal- and state-owned lands that are composed of mostly grasses and sagebrush that are quite vulnerable to wildfires during the summer months.

While most agree that a terrorist attack in Boise is not likely, local officials are rightly taking the report seriously. They plan on discussing the findings with the authors of study and the FBI.

A Tribute to Buddy: 1991 – 2008

I had always wanted a cat, but couldn’t have one as a child. As a teen, I loved going over to John’s house, because I was able to play with his cat Toby. So, within a week of getting married in 1991, The Wife and I were at the Idaho Humane Society to pick out a kitten. We looked at many, but this adorable little orange fuzzball captured our hearts immediately. We took care of the adoption paperwork and then headed to the store to pick the necessary supplies. I waited in the car and bonded with my new friend while The Wife went inside to get the stuff. He was so tiny that I was able to place him in the recessed instrument panel on our Mazda 323. I was stroking his chin and he was purring like a buzz saw. I looked down at him, he looked up at me, and I said “Hey buddy”. It was that simple…that’s how he became Buddy.

Buddy was the most easy-going cat I have ever known. Whether it was bringing a new animal into the house or having a baby pull on his tail, he never complained–he just purred away. He loved car rides. I would take him with me on a trip to the store. On the trip there, he would wander around the car, look out the windows, then eventually sack out somewhere. However, he would apparently miss me while I was in the store, because on the trip home he was on my lap rubbing all over me.

He also loved to talk. When you talked to him, he was always ready with a reply. He also didn’t have any problem yelling at us after we were gone for too long or if dinner was late. We could always ask a question and fancy that his reply was “yes” or “no”.

About 7 years ago, Buddy developed chronic pancreatitis. It was so severe at one point, that we nearly had to put him to sleep. However, the vet had us try some special food that she thought might buy him some more time. The vet is still amazed that he lived as long as he did.

For many years, he slept at my side. With him there purring, it was a comforting and relaxing tonic for a stressful life. In recent months, he simply preferred sleeping elsewhere. I think that climbing on and off the bed was too difficult for him. However, right up until the end, he would sit on my lap in the recliner each evening–purring like crazy. It was a highlight of my day that I will miss.

Through 17 years, 4 residences, 2 kids growing from infants to tween- and teen-hood, and multiple other animals coming and going, Buddy had always been there. Now that he is gone, there is a huge hole in our home and a pain in our hearts that will take a long time to heal.

Goodbye Buddy…We love you!

Earthquake!

The Wife called me at 7:23am and asked “Did you feel it?” I had no idea what she was talking about. Apparently she was sitting at a stoplight in Meridian, Idaho on her way home from work when her truck started shaking. She looked around for a big truck coming down the road that might cause the shaking, but saw nothing. Then she saw that the stoplights were bobbing up and down.

What she felt was a 6.3 magnitude earthquake that occurred 11 miles northeast of Elko, Nevada, 6 miles below the surface. The temblor was felt throughout northern Nevada, southern Idaho, and northern Utah. Cracked walls were reported at the Motel 6 in Wells, Nevada. Unfortunately, it sounds like there will be many more reports forthcoming of property damage in the immediate Wells area.

Obama Takes Idaho By Storm

Idaho is the most conservative state in the country. In fact, I think we may have a law on the books explicitly banning liberalism. However, it appears the some have been able to sneak across the border.  🙂

Barack Obama held a rally in Boise today to an overflow crowd at Taco Bell Arena. Organizers originally setup the venue for 8,800 people–using a black curtain to block off part of the arena. However, they quickly had to reconfigure the arena to open it up completely. When the dust settled, more than 14,000 people were in seats and standing–a record crowd in the 25 years the arena has been in use. 1,000 people even braved the cold temperatures to stand outside and listen on speakers.

Say what you will about his politics, but this man is inspiring and exciting people in a way not seen since Ronald Reagan in 1980 and John Kennedy in 1960. He doesn’t have a prayer of winning Idaho in the general election, but I think we may see a surprising number of cross-over votes.

http://www.ktvb.com/news/localnews/stories/ktvbn-feb0208-taco_bell.81b065ff.html