Custom Search
Blogity-blah-blah-blog: 2012

Monday, December 10, 2012

Love, Marriage, Kids, etc.: Part Two

Read part one here if you haven't already.

In this post I want to talk about how I proposed to April. It was in November of 2009. One night I told her we should go to the Bullfrog Brewery for dinner (It's where we had our first date). I knew I had to do something creative, and that's when a horror movie gave me a great idea on how to propose.

Oops, sorry, that's the Spanish version

So, I decided to take the DVD out of the box and put the engagement ring in it's place. Clever, huh? The only problem was the tag line at the top "BEFORE YOU DIE, YOU SEE...". It was a little unsettling. So I came up with the idea to replace "DIE" with "SAY YES". So it read "BEFORE YOU SAY YES, YOU SEE.." and then of course followed by "THE RING". So I put the ring in the case and wrapped it in some wrapping paper. 

Part way through dinner I told April I left something in the car so I ran out to get it. I didn't know it at the time but she had a strong feeling I was going to propose to her that night. So when I came walking back in with a wrapped gift that looked nothing like the size of a ring box she was probably confused. I gave it to her and she unwrapped it. "It's" she said. I said "Yea, it's really good, have you seen it?" ""

Then she noticed the tag line at the top and she read it out loud, "BEFORE YOU...SAY YES???, YOU SEE THE RING?" Then she opened the box and there it was! I made sure to get down on one knee and ask her to marry me. Then her phone rang and a voice said "Seven days." and hung up. Ok, that last sentence wasn't true.

So that's the story of how I proposed. And if you're wondering, I got the ring at Petro's in Williamsport, PA. I highly recommend going there for your engagement, wedding, jewelry, etc. needs. How's that for some free advertising, Petro's? You're welcome!

Next time I do this series I'll talk about our one year anniversary since April and I met, it'll be a fun one.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Work, Work, Work Edition: Here's Your Sign

I worked for a company called Fast Signs for a short time in the Spring and Summer of 2010. It was only a temporary job so I don't have much to say about it. Basically what we did there was design signs for different businesses, for private use and we also did vehicle wraps. Not only did we design those things but we had to print them out and apply them to slabs of wood, metal, buildings, windows, etc. We made banners, street signs, decals, and even those signs you see in the outfields of baseball fields. 

One of our biggest projects was the Hometown Heroes banners which were hung on light posts all over the city. The Hometown Heroes banners had pictures of people who are serving or used to serve in the military. We scanned many old photographs, fixed them up in Photoshop if they needed it and then brought those photographs and the information about them into a design that we had already created. As hectic as it was, it was probably my favorite project we worked on. 

I worked on a small team. There were only three of us designers and a fourth person who helped us make the signs. It was a fun environment to work in. We had a TouchTunes jukebox that we got to play for free while working there and we had fun playing jokes on each other. Every Monday we ordered Chinese food for lunch and on Wednesdays we ate out at the local Mexican restaurant.

I really enjoyed this job, it's too bad it was only a temporary position. I also worked a second job while I worked at this one but I'll save that for next time.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Comic #3

Sorry, it's been over two months since my last post. We just moved and I'm working two jobs right now, so the fun stuff (blogging) has to be put on hold sometimes. But I'm actually working on an audio file right now that I'm going to put up on my blog with a slideshow to go along with it. I'm not going to tell you what it is right now, it's a surprise. Anyway, I thought I would share with you the third comic I've created. So here it is:

(Click on the picture to see it larger)

Okay, if you don't get this one, I'm not going to explain it to you. "The Name Game" (or The Banana Song) was written by Shirley Ellis in 1964 as a children's sing-a-long rhyming game. The Name Game reached #3 on Billboard's Hot 100 in 1965. Here's a video of Shirley performing The Name Game (The white bar goes away after five seconds, I'm not sure why it's there):

The Name Game has showed up in various movies and tv shows. My favorite instance is in the movie "The Money Pit" starring Tom Hanks and Shelley Long. In fact, I chose the name Brad in the word bubble in the comic because Tom Hanks picks the name Brad while he's singing the song. Here's the clip:

If you've never seen this movie, watch it, WATCH IT NOW! Unless you're busy, then watch it later. That's all I've got for today, check back again for more, hopefully it won't be more than two months next time.

Monday, July 2, 2012

10 Random iPod Songs

I thought I'd do something fun today. I decided to put my iPod on shuffle and list the first ten songs that come up. I'll add YouTube vids to each one so you can hear the song. I have very unique taste in music by the way, so here it goes:

#1. Raptamei Pi by E.S. Posthumus

I stumbled upon E.S. Posthumus while listening to the band Muse on Pandora radio. Muse tends to be very theatrical with their music so that's probably why an E.S. Posthumus song played on that channel. You've probably heard their music before and not known it. Their music has been featured in movies like Spiderman, Planet of the Apes, Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, The Matrix Reloaded, National Treasure, Avatar and The Hunger Games. They've also been featured on TV shows like Lost, Brothers & Sisters, Heroes and Law & Order: SVU. Learn more about them by clicking here.

#2. A Shadow on Me by Project 86

This is the only video I could find. This band has been on Tooth and Nail records  since dirt was invented. This song is on their album "Songs to Burn Your Bridges By" Here's the cover art:

I'd like to do a post on some of my favorite album covers from my collection someday. You can find Project 86's website by clicking here.

#3. Playing with Fire (Acoustic) by Emery

Emery is one of my favorite bands. They're also on Tooth and Nail records. The best way I can describe their music is by using the word "bi-polar". Some of their songs can be very soothing but then within the same songs there is also some screaming. That's how I like my music, music that sounds very calm and soothing and music that kicks you right in the face. With Emery you can get both in the same song. There website can be found here

#4. Why Wait? by P.O.D.

Ah, this song makes me want to go back to Jamaica. Good times. I think P.O.D. has really matured as a band. They have more a diverse sound than they did when they started out. They're primarily a hard rock band as everyone probably knows already. But there are elements of hip-hop, punk, and reggae in their music as well. It's a nice blend. Their website is here.

#5. Fight by PFR

This is the only video I could find on YouTube for this one as well. I especially like the pic of Jesus hovering over earth. Is that smoke coming off of him? Is he re-entering the earth's atmosphere? Anyway, PFR is one of the first bands I started listening to and they're still one of my favorites. Originally they were called "Pray for Rain" but there was already a band with that name. That band threatened to sue, so they had to change the name of the band to PFR. Click here for their wikipedia page.

#6. Hello Ego by John Reuben

I went though a phase where I liked hip-hop a lot. John Reuben is one of the few hip-hop artists I still listen to. I like his intelligent lyrics and he goes against the grain of mainstream hip-hop. Just like in the song "Hello Ego", so many hip-hop artists are so full of themselves and this song tackles that issue. For John's website, clicky here.

#7. The Breeze by Dr. Dog

This is the unofficial video for this song, I thought it was clever. Dr. Dog is a rock band from West Grove which is near Philadelphia in my home state of Pennsylvania. Even though Dr. Dog is a newer band, their music sounds like it's from another time. They are influenced by 60's pop and rock and it definitely shows in their music. Learn more about them here.

#8. Suspended in You by Skillet

Skillet is another band I've been listening to for awhile, since the mid-90's. It has been interesting to see how their sound has changed over the years, but their first album is still probably my favorite out of all their other albums. You can find their website here, no, here.

#9. Under the Floor by Switchfoot

Switchfoot probably doesn't really need an introduction, but perhaps this song in particular does. This one came out long before they became popular. Lead singer Jon Foreman has a couple side projects as well including 4 EPs called Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall. Another side project he's involved with is a band called Fiction Family with guitarist Sean Watkins of Nickel Creek. I think I actually like the side projects more than I like Switchfoot. But you can check out Switchfoot here.

#10. Coffee by Copeland

Copeland sadly disbanded a few years ago but had a great run. They started out on Militia Group Records and recorded their last album with Tooth & Nail Records. This is probably one of my favorite songs by them. Lead singer Aaron Marsh and Anberlin's lead singer, Stephen Christian started a band called Anchor & Braille which is still active. Visit Copeland here and here.

I don't expect you to listen to every song, but at least sample them, see what you like.

Well, this was fun. I'll have to do something like this again someday. 

Friday, June 15, 2012

Love, Marriage, Kids, etc.: Part One

I'd like to take you on a journey. Just before I started this blog I met the woman who would eventually become my wife. Her name is April, I met her in March and she married me in May. Of course we waited a year and two months to get married, not two months. I just wanted to make that clear. 

In part one of this series I'd like to talk about the first six months of our courtship. Does anyone use the word "courtship" anymore? Anyway, we had our first date on March 20, 2009 at the Bullfrog Brewery in Williamsport, PA. So how did we meet? A good friend of mine had just met a nice girl a few months before and she said she had someone for me to meet, but it wasn't April. She was talking on the phone one day with the girl she wanted me to meet, but she told her she was seeing someone already. April happened to be listening in on the conversation and spoke up since she was looking for someone (Those last few sentences made me sound like a teenage girl, didn't they?). Then one Sunday in church I was given a piece of paper with April's Myspace address on it. Remember Myspace? When I got home I decided to look up her profile. After viewing her profile and looking at the pictures I realized that I've seen her before. I had seen her at Valley Mosaic months earlier. She doesn't remember seeing me there though.

After our first date I walked her to her car. I thought that maybe this was going to be our only date since I had been on so many first dates that never turned into second dates. But then before we parted ways for the evening she said something I'll never forget, "I'm free all weekend." So I took her up on that offer. The next day I went to her house and met her mom, her son Gabe, and her cats, Lucky, Napoleon, and Mr. Bear. 

That evening we went to Jesse and Natalie's house to watch a movie and after that we went to her friends' place to hang out. The following week was her birthday. It's hard to know what to get for someone you just met a week ago. I got her a wrought iron thingy to hang her pots and pans on. It was the kind of gift that said, "Hey, I've only known you for a week, here you go." 

I'm going to skip six months ahead and talk about what I did for our six month anniversary from the time we had met. I bought a dozen roses, six red, six white, and hid them all over the house. The first one I put on the front door with a note.

There are 11 more. Can you find them :)

There was another note on the dining room table which said "April, Do Not Open until you find them all." :P

The note inside explained why there were six red roses and six white roses. The red roses symbolized the six months we had already spent together that were filled with love. The white roses symbolized the six months that were to come. So that was my cheesy romantic idea. I'm going to end this post for now, but there will be more to come. 

Monday, May 21, 2012

Comic #2

Hey guys, this will be a short one today. Back in my zombie post I shared a comic that I made. I want to share another one with you today, enjoy!

Ok, so if you know absolutely nothing about Superman or Thomas the Tank Engine, then you probably won't get this one. So I'll explain it as simply as I can. In the Adventures of Superman TV show from the 1950's the intro states that Superman is "Faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive..." so I just took those two lines and made them one, except I replaced the word "speeding" with "speaking". Thomas the Tank Engine is a train that speaks. So, that's how I ended up with a comic depicting Superman outrunning Thomas the Tank Engine. As a bonus, check out the two vids below.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Easter Photoshoot with Chloe

I know we're already more than a week into May, but I wanted to post some pictures I took of Chloe on Easter when we visited her great-grandma. So enough talk, let's see em'. I'll provide commentary under each picture of what I think may have been Chloe's thoughts.

Where the heck am I?

Why am I surrounded by flowers?

Daddy, put the camera down!

Is this my new babysitter?


That's a huge flower!

That one's even bigger!

That sun's too bright, let's go inside!

Ah, back inside, that's better.

Did I just lay these eggs?

What's that over there?

It's frightening!

No, wait. It's just Daddy

'Sup, Daddy-o!

 You are photographing my good side, right?

That was just a trick question, both sides are my good side

No, I'm not ready for my close-up

Are you done taking pictures yet, Daddy?

I'm not so sure how I feel

I think I'm tired...

...or maybe sad.

Or maybe I'm happy...

...or maybe I'm not.

Nah! I'm definitely happy!

Where my peeps at?!

Hey, what's the big idea?!

That last one is my favorite. What a face! I hope everyone enjoyed these pictures. I'm sure more will come later. Peace. 

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Work, Work, Work Edition: From Paris with Lumps

Back when I started this blog, I had a theme for each day of the work week. Tuesdays were called Story Time Tuesdays. I had started a mini-series within this theme called the "Work, Work, Work, Edition". I will now continue this series with my experience working for Paris Uniform Company. The picture above is Gabe with some of my equipment on. I used to load my truck on Saturday or Sunday so it was all ready for Monday. Sometimes Gabe came along to help.

I named this one "From Paris with Lumps" because it always seemed I had some kind of bump, scratch, bruise or injury while working for this company. I started talking about this job in this post if you want to catch up.

I started my day by waking up around 2:45am. I'd drive to the warehouse and load up my 16' box truck and try to be on the road by 5am. I delivered to an average of 20 customers a day so I had about 100 customers total throughout the week. After delivering everything and picking up the dirty uniforms, mats, and other products that needed washed, I'd return to the warehouse and unload my truck and then do a bunch of paperwork. For the first few weeks this took me about 14-16 hours to complete. I wouldn't get home until almost 7pm some nights. This is probably the main reason why I stopped blogging. When I became more used to the job it only took me 10-12 hours to complete a day, once in while only 8 hours. This job was very physically demanding and I lost about 30lbs. while working for Paris. Regrettably, I have put that weight back since then.

That's pretty much the short story version of what my job was like. Now I'd like to share a few stories about my experience at Paris. I got to know quite a few of my customers well and built good working relationships with them and had some fun joking around with them sometimes.

One morning I was driving to my first stop and it took about 45 minutes to get there and I enjoyed listening to podcasts and music while driving. I was listening to a podcast called "We're Alive" which is like one of the old time radio dramas, only newer. I mentioned it in my zombie post. I had just finished listening to one that was pretty intense when I arrived at my first stop. It was still very early in the morning and it was still very dark outside. As I stepped out of my truck I heard someone come up behind me and yell "RAAAAAAAAHH!" It scared the living bejeepers out of me. Normally I don't scare that easily, but I was already a little edgy when he did it. The guy that scared me was one of the workers at the plant I was delivering to. I usually talked with him when I made my stops there. I liked to play jokes on him too. All the workers there were supposed to get new coats from Paris and I delivered a few at a time each week and this guy in particular didn't get his coat for a long time. So he would jokingly act like he was really upset when he didn't get his coat. The first time I thought he was serious. He asked me if his coat arrived yet and he got this worried look on his face and looked like he was going to cry. He said, "I just know the reason I haven't gotten my coat yet is because they're going to fire me" and he turned away and acted like he was crying. I started to feel really bad for him, but then he turned back around with this big grin on his face. His coat did eventually arrive. I put it in his locker and I later ran into him and said "Hey, your coat showed up. I put it in your locker. Your name is Mike, right?" which wasn't really his name. When he told me it wasn't his name I told him I was sorry and said maybe he'd get his coat next week. So the next time I saw him he realized I had pulled one over on him and he told me that was a good one.

I also delivered to an Italian restaurant. The owner didn't speak much English so his son would usually translate for me. But one of the things he liked to do was come up to me, look in my shirt pocket and say "Where's the money?" One time I bought some fake play money and put it in my shirt pocket so when he asked me where the money was, I gave that to him.

I also delivered to one of the Kellogg's locations in Muncy, PA. So, if you've ever gotten a hair in one of your pop tarts, it might be mine! Just kidding. They didn't mess around when it came to sanitation. Your pop tarts are safe. Here's what I had to look like before entering Kellogg's:

I look like Ronald McDonald and Bluebeard the pirate had a kid. Hairnet, Beardnet, earplugs and safety glasses. While I was still training with Paris, the route manager and I went into Kellogg's to deliver when a woman stopped us and yelled, "You can't wear shorts in here!" So They went and got us a couple of while plastic full body jumpsuits that we had to wear while we were there. Sorry, I don't have a picture of that. The best thing though is that the contact person that I met with when I was there was named Tony. I'll let that one sink in for a moment.....

...still don't get it? 

There you go.

Anyway, where was I? Oh yea. One more story from working at Paris. I delivered to a large warehouse and I had to back my truck into one of the loading docks that are usually used by tractor trailers, so the back of my truck wasn't high enough to line up with the door leaving more than a two foot drop from the dock into the back of my truck. I must have stepped up and down into and out of the back of my truck at that loading dock hundreds of times, but this one time in particular I stepped down into my truck the wrong way and as I went down on my face all I heard was a *pop*. There was no snap or crackle, just a *pop*. I didn't know what happened at first but I knew my foot was in a lot of pain. I sat up to take my boot and sock off and as soon as I did I knew I was going to have the rest of the day off. I crawled up onto the loading dock and flagged someone down for help. They sent a little motorized cart for me to ride on and then one of the people on the safety team took me to the ER. While I was sitting in the ER I decided to take a picture of my foot. WARNING: not for the squeamish.

No, that big bump is not my ankle. the little bump under the big bump is my ankle. Yea, ouch, I was thinking the same thing. Actually I was feeling the same thing. By the way, do you like my tan line from my sandals? I was off work for the next three days and then I was on light duty for the next two weeks. Light duty consisted of me riding in the passenger side of my truck and playing games on my phone while the route manager did all the work :)
The only reason why I had to ride along is so I would get paid.

Okay, that'll do it for this post. Sorry it took so long to get this one out.