Finally, a Change

So I’ve been complaining about the cloudy, rainy weather all this week during our stay in Portland. Well, I finally got my wish–a change! Yesterday, there was this bright, glowing ball that appeared in the sky for a few short minutes. I feared that it was a nuclear explosion or an alien invasion. However, apparently the locals call this thing the sun. And get this: we are lucky enough to be here for its semi-annual appearance. How sweet is that?

Furthermore, we awoke to snow on the ground on the ground this morning. It quickly melted. Now we are in a vicious cycle of clouds, hail, rain, clear, sun, repeat. Now that’s change I can believe in.

Hold on, it looks like I’ve got some moss starting to form on my back from all the rain. I’d better take care of this. Signing out for now.

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Hit or Miss

Despite being on vacation, there are a few things I miss about being home. Let’s take a look at what I miss and don’t miss. That way, we can determine if a prefer vacation or the daily grind.

What I Miss

  • Easy access to a computer: I mean, it’s right here in the spare bedroom and they have high speed Internet access. But they don’t leave it on all the time, so I have to wait like 5 minutes for it to boot up. Plus I feel guilty about hiding away.
  • Our best friends: We hang out with our best friends just about every weekend, and so we probably won’t see them for a couple weeks now.
  • Traffic: It may sound strange, but it’s true. We live in the country, so there is no traffic compared to Portland. A traffic jam in the country is getting caught behind some slow-moving farm equipment.
  • The Older Daughter: She went to Disneyland with her best friend and her family. I’m jealous, but miss her just the same.
  • TiVo: I’ve come to a point where I don’t watch anything live. I record it with TiVo and watch it later so that I can skip past the commercials. Plus it’s nice to be able to skip back a few seconds to catch the dialogue I missed when all the dogs bark their heads off.

What I Don’t Miss

  • Work
  • The alarm clock
  • Worry about looking for a new job
  • The daily routine
  • Having absolutely no free time
  • Getting up early: I’m a night owl and love to stay up ridiculously late and sleep in
  • Brown: I do love the green of western Oregon over the brown of southwestern Idaho.

So there we have it: I have 7 things I don’t miss and 5 that I do. So I think that I should just stay on vacation forever. What do you think?

Where am I Anyway?

I mentioned that I am on vacation in Portland, Oregon this week. Well, that not quite correct. I’m actually in Vancouver, Washington. The people of Vancouver probably don’t like that I am saying Portland. However, it’s just easier than trying to explain where Vancouver is. Plus, if it weren’t for the Columbia River, this would be Portland. So there.

However, this got me thinking about all the places I’ve lived that have an identity crisis. I’m afraid it’s running rampant. Let’s take a look at them:

  • I was born in Lebanon–no, not the Middle Eastern country: Lebanon, Oregon
  • I then moved to Ontario–no, not California or Canada: Ontario, Oregon
  • My wife is from Vancouver–no, not Canada: Vancouver, Washington

What Day is it Anyway?

DITH will be reporting to you for the next week from our branch in sunny rainy Hawaii Portland. Most often, I’ll typing my posts while sipping margaritas Diet Mountain Dew from the beach a cramped spare room. My nerves will be soothed frayed by waves crashing gently on the shore screaming kids and barking dogs.

Having said all that, I am actually having a wonderfully relaxing time so far. We arrived on Saturday. So far, we have mostly visited with family, watched TV, slept in, and eaten. The most exciting thing we have done so far is visit the IKEA store this afternoon–yes that legendary vacation destination.

I’m seriously not complaining though. I woke up this morning and didn’t even really know what day it was. That’s a fantastic feeling. I’m also not wearing a watch and don’t know or care what time it is.

The past few months have been tough and the remainder of this year could prove even more interesting. So I’m really looking forward to just unplugging from all the negative stuff going on–just for a few days. However, I’ll try not to disappoint my devoted followers. I plan on checking in with any interesting things that happen. Stay tuned.

8 Things About Me I’m Pretty Sure You Don’t Care About

Okay, my posting rate has been a little slow over the last few days. So I’m lifting a meme from John to get things moving along again. With this meme, you basically tell 8 facts about yourself and then tag someone else. I’m not going to officially tag anyone, but be a good sport and play along okay?

1. Both of my grandpas were named after famous people: Jesse James and Benjamin Franklin. Unfortunately, I never had the pleasure meeting either one (neither the grandpas nor the actual famous people).

2. I have ridden in the back of a police car and briefly checked out the county jail. You see, back in junior high, we had a zero-tolerance policy for fighting. If you were caught, you automatically got to ride to the county jail–about 13 miles away. They scared the hell out of you by showing you some cells, then your parents got to come pick you up. The fight was so minor that it was not worth it. No charges were filed. In retrospect, I should have drawn some blood or something for all the trouble of having my parents pick me up from jail.

3. Several years back, I was a good sport and took Irish dance lessons with the Younger Daughter. For the record, she grew bored of it and decided to quit–not me.

4. My biggest traffic pet peeve: Not using your turn signal. In an earlier post, I threatened to develop a tactical nuke capable of taking out a car. I would definitely use this on those who can’t be bothered with such formalities as signalling turns.

5. I am a sucker for cats. I could easily be one of those freaks that has like 47 cats. I hope this doesn’t threaten my Man Club membership.

6. In junior high, I once told a counselor that my goal was to be an NBA basketball player. For some weird reason, he thought I should have a backup plan, but I didn’t think so. For the record, I never even tried out for basketball. Oh yeah, and I’m 5’9″. Thankfully, I did come up with a backup plan.

7. I was so painfully shy in my younger years, that I never attended a single dance–not even the big ones: homecoming, prom, etc. That’s probably my single biggest regret from my youth.

8. Many years ago now, John and I decided at around 3pm to drive from Portland, Oregon, to Vancouver, B.C…for no particular reason. And we just turned around and drove right back after grabbing some fuel and snacks in Vancouver. A 12-hour round-trip if I remember correctly. Crazy. And one of my fondest memories.

Friday, February 22, 2008: The End of the World?

This has been a really freaky week with “natural” events in the west. Let’s take a look at what has happened so far:

At this rate, I fully expect tomorrow to be the end of the world.

What, Now I Can’t Bring My Grenades onto the Plane?

A member of the military was arrested today after trying to go through airport security with two grenades in Yakima, Washington. Okay, they were training grenades. They had live fuses but no explosives in them. But really, what was this guy thinking? I know, I know, it was probably an “honest mistake”–pipe down. But was it really an honest mistake?

When I pack for a flight, I first go through each pocket of the luggage and remove everything. That way, I know I’m starting off legal. Then as I’m packing, I’m thinking about each item to make sure it’s going to pass happily through security. Once the kids are finished packing, I do my own separate security search of their bags. They last thing I need is a full body cavity search from an oh-so-friendly TSA agent brought on by the kids loading up their luggage with guns, bombs, and knives–just to see how much fun it is to get dad in trouble.

Sorry, I don’t give this guy a pass. For the privilege of flying, you need to take a few extra minutes to exercise some responsibility in how and what you pack.