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Last Visit 2011-01-17 23:04:23 |Start Date 2004-11-03 18:51:40 |Comments 1,935 |Entries 529 |Images 250 |Videos 22 |

06/30/09 10:35 - ID#49129

Yet Another Admission To Discuss

I must be horny - lately I've been fixated on discussing what my boundaries are in terms of attraction to the opposite sex. The "mistaken lesbian unrequited love" entry that I posted yesterday is one thing, but I think this next tidbit may be controversial. Maybe not so much with the lesbian contingent, but we'll see.

Women with shaved heads. Yes or no? I'm not talking about Bic razor shaved, but your normal clipper style. I say yes!

Yesterday while driving home I saw a girl that completely blew me away but I don't think a single one of my friends would consider dating her. She was wearing a tight, slinky black dress, curvy, in my eyes mega attractive, and the way she walked just oozed sexy confidence. Really pretty smile, black Ray-Bans, and a shaved head. Allow me to be a typical guy and use a crude analogy - for some this is like being presented with a 5-star, world class dessert topped with something funky you haven't tasted before. This is where the world of "to each, his own" really kicks in, but for me this was another Cupid moment. Based on my track record and what I revealed in my last post, any takers on whether or not she's "off the market to me" so to speak? Maybe Cupid hates me? Really though, I was totally struck with how beautiful I thought she was.

Based on a very unscientific survey I think you'll find some of what my guy friends had to say surprising. A co-worker told me that he'd date a girl with a full tattoo sleeve before dating a girl with a shaved head. Hmm. Another spoke about the challenges of bringing home a girl with a different outlook on personal expression to meet grandma, which maybe isn't so surprising. (Yes, some of us are actually honest with mostly decent intentions!).

I say sexy is sexy, and personally I'm not going to be stopped because a girl I thought was an utter knockout has hair a little shorter than mine.


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06/29/09 12:28 - 70ºF - ID#49123

Another Admission

This is more direct and will probably be more controversial, but I suspect that it might start an interesting conversation. Or not. This time I'm not admitting something I don't like about myself but rather something maybe a little more unusual. I bet I'm not alone on this one either.

More than once I've found myself attracted to a girl that I found out later was a lesbian. Actually, this might be my least favorite thing about the pride parade - almost every year I see a fine lady and Cupid plays a cruel and unusual joke on me. I'll see a girl that gets my heart pounding, then a second later she'll be holding hands with another girl, and then a minute later they're kissing. SON OF A! Off the market, move along soldier. I love girls regardless of their own sexuality, apparently!

I have to laugh at myself. I'm sure this has happened to everybody (a lesbian attracted to a straight girl, etc.). I love you girls anyway - ALL of you!
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06/28/09 11:59 - 67ºF - ID#49107

I Disappoint Myself Sometimes

I've kept my blog relatively light-hearted for a while, but today I wanted to share with you guys something that really bugs me about myself. This is about an aspect of my personality that I dislike and would like to work on and change a bit.

I know myself and where I stand with my friends fairly well. I'm secure with myself more or less, although there are things that I wish were different, which is a statement that I think most people would make. I know that amongst my friends I'm broadly well-liked and amongst the more popular ones, even when I've been kind of reclusive. People do like me and I don't know why... but I'm thankful!

There is something about my personality that I hate and I feel like at times it betrays that sentiment from my friends and colleagues. Once in a while a pet peeve of mine will be in front of me, my thought process halts and a swift rush of annoyance hits me, and I'll stop what I'm doing and do whatever I can to stop that pet peeve. I'll even be vicious about it if I feel like someone is being annoying to me or a friend. Then, on occasion, I'll realize after the fact that I should have taken a different approach because my instant reaction to the pet peeve that I just described clouded my judgment, making me take too heavy handed an approach to begin with. Then I'll apologize, because I thought about it for a minute and realized that I was horrified with how I reacted.

I'm betraying myself when I do that. What it comes down to is that I am not giving people the benefit of the doubt at times, and I need to do that more because it is all that I would ask of anyone else to do for me if I were misunderstood or misinterpreted.
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06/26/09 02:57 - 78ºF - ID#49090

If You Love My Shades Then Just Admit It

Ray-Ban has a utility that allows you to "try on" different models of sunglasses. I've been thinking about replacing my current aviators with a new model, or perhaps the Wayfarer type. Here's a screenshot of the utility while in use -

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The aviator model is entirely different than the model I currently wear - different shape, different lens size, different manufacturer. What I'm really interested in, although you can't seem to pick it specifically, is the black metal frame aviators with the dark green lenses... the sort of classic Ray-Ban setup.

I dunno. Sorry about not shaving, by the way, but then again if I don't have to apologize to my boss why am I apologizing for the public at large? Haha. Which do you think are best?

EDIT: X-factors, for fun. Sorry for the fuzzy picture but it's kind of dark.

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EDIT: XXX-factor, no pr0n involved - I give you my brother. Hot like lava, y'all -


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06/25/09 01:09 - 82ºF - ID#49077

Sympathy for the Pathetic

People don't hate people because they are beautiful. People hate people because they incessantly remind others how beautiful they think they are. Do you know how hard it is to feel sympathy for a narcissist?

It doesn't have to do with jealousy - there is an intrinsic (and incorrect) assumption here that other people are as obsessed with their looks as the narcissist is with his or her looks. Some people go their whole lives without giving an apparent shit about how they look and manage to be happy, whereas the narcissist is constantly unhappy irrespective of how great or terrible they look. I don't understand the conspiratorial aspect of the narcissist's personality. Maybe Hitler could sympathize?
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06/18/09 06:08 - 57ºF - ID#49000

iPhone, Flowers

I'm a Luddite - I never want to own an iPhone or a Blackberry. All I need is a basic phone - do you guys remember the type with numbered buttons on it and nothing else? Yeah, that's for me. I don't need to be tied to the Internet 24/7 wherever I go and I certainly don't need availability to e-mail constantly. Neither are "must have" items in my view. For me it's a novelty, an accessory used to try to impress people or to indicate to other like-minded people that you are part of their crowd. In other words I think a lot of bullshit is tied into owning an iPhone, no different than a lot of bullshit goes into owning Apple products in general. The worst are the insufferable types who actually believe that owning Apple products makes you a superior person. (You usually see these people sprout in public blogs and forums when new technology is released). Blackberry - it is an obligatory part of the office douche toolkit, say no more.

For those of you who actually get meaningful utility out of these devices - I don't understand you.

EDIT: Oops, I wanted to post pictures of the flowers -

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Not sure what these guys are.

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These bushes are hit or miss at the moment, but the good flowers are very good. I love how these turn from red at the bud, through the rainbow to orange and finally to yellow.

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See?

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Another nice bloom.

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A picture of my birthday beer, for the hell of it. (Dogfish Head 120 Minute IPA, aged a short time)
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06/10/09 11:45 - ID#48883

Co-op Ownership, Pt. II

Co-op Membership

I took the plunge -

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If the GM writes you, gives you some good information and basically says, "hey, we'd love to have you if you're on the same page as us," I don't think you can get a better invite than that. This morning, on the way to work, I went in and paid up in full. You pay in full, you get a reusable bag for free! To Tim - I hope you read this. Thanks for giving me the information to make me realize that I should have done this sooner - if I see you in the store I'll introduce myself!

As Tim said, you don't have to pay in full though - as you can see on my temporary membership card, the numbers 1-8 are present. This is simply to track how close you are to paying it all off, if you are paying $10 at a time. As long as you are current on payment you will retain the member benefits. You can put members of your household on record as well, which I did.

Generally speaking, I am on the same page as they are. After I had the benefits of ownership properly explained to me, my biggest concerns were alleviated. The new owner package comes with what I think is the best coupon book I've ever seen - numerous products with sharp discounts, or outright free. I think this is great, because to be perfectly honest I'd never consider purchasing some of these items and now I have some encouragement to give them a shot.

I learned something in the LexTalk magazine - the Co-op derives 100% of its energy supply from renewable resources. How excellent is that? Also, as a member you can join the Buffalo Cooperative Federal Credit Union, which I'd definitely encourage. Big banks suck - you're a number and customer service is woeful. At a local bank, or a credit union, you'll be much better off in my estimation. This is consistent with the Co-op philosophy of being as localcentric as possible - the Co-op credit union cycles dollars locally, which is always a good thing.

I think the Co-op has room for improvement. There are a few things that are still not clear to me: for example, there are a number of everyday basic items that you receive a 15% discount on - today I bought milk but the receipt doesn't itemize how much I saved. The receipt gives you an aggregate savings amount at the bottom. I know what I saved, but not on what items. I would like to be able to see exactly how much I saved on the milk, at least a way to differentiate my member only savings. For that matter, I don't know exactly what items are considered "every day basics." How do I find out? Also, I am unsure about how the bulk ordering works and how you go about it - I don't have any information that tells me. Maybe there is something on the site that I missed?

A Special Request, Possibly Unfulfilled

As far as products in the store, I have a pet peeve that drives me crazy. I'm probably pickier than most about what coffee I drink at home - the fact that it is free trade organic isn't good enough. I know I'm weirder than most as to how I brew my coffee at home as well - a drip cone and a grinder are my only tools. The co-op has a fantastic selection of coffee, some of it single origin, but I think the Co-op is missing an opportunity to differentiate itself.

I'm talking about microroasting. I was turned on to this during my last trip to CA, where I learned about small scale coffee roasters that insist on serving only that which has been roasted very, very recently - no later than 8 hours prior to shipment is the standard for Blue Bottle Coffee, where I buy mine. I can get fresher coffee mailed to me from CA than I can here in Buffalo.

I've seen the difference myself, and believe me, the coffee is markedly better. When I receive it in the mail, the aroma coming off the bag is unlike any fresh coffee you'll ever smell - it has a fresh roasted quality that I can't describe with words. I love their Chiapas because it is melange roasted (good luck finding that kind of roast anywhere within 500 miles, it's a lost artform), giving the coffee a quality that makes you think you're drinking a campfire. Getting the same coffee locally, even from the same single origin source (I've done this with Columbian that both the Co-op and Blue Bottle sold), shows me that simply put the local product is inferior. I think that if other coffee lovers smelled this stuff and gave it a shot, that they'd be willing to seek it out, but then again it's possible that I'm the only one in Buffalo this crazy about microroasted coffee.

This can change. I happen to know a guy at Spot who basically told me, "hey, if you want the coffee fresh just come down, we'll pull the beans right out of the roaster for you." That's great for me but is of no help to the community at large. Ideally, I wish the Co-op roasted their own beans and offered microroasted stuff to customers, or at least to members for purchase at select times. If the Co-op had no interest in an in-house setup due to financial or logistical reasons, maybe this sort of thing could be contracted out to Spot, since they already have the equipment.

Maybe it's a far flung dream that won't yield a benefit to the Co-op, but the bottom line is that I think it's sad that the freshest beans available to me have to be bought, packed, shipped and delivered from somewhere else. I've considered buying "green" beans and roasting them at home myself. Maybe it would be the start of a local, small scale budding coffee business that people would be proud of. Am I that crazy?
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06/09/09 04:06 - 68ºF - ID#48877

Adam Lambert - BIG SURPRISE ANNOUNCEMENT

Adam Lambert: "I'm gay."

America: "We know."


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06/08/09 01:31 - ID#48865

Overcharged at Sweetness 7

I wasn't going to mention this in my blog, but I felt like I had to because I was disappointed, puzzled and then pleasantly surprised this morning at Sweetness 7.

I go to Sweetness 7 every weekend and have done so practically since they opened their doors. I have promoted it to my friends and pretty much anyone else willing to skip the lines at Spot for what I consider to be a superior product. What I don't like is when I order a drink that is priced $2.00 on the chalkboard, then ultimately get charged $3.50 for it.

I don't know if it was a mistake on the part of the cashier, or that the board is woefully underpriced. I've ordered the turkish coffee twice at Sweetness 7, and twice I've had the kids look back at me with puzzled looks, as if they're not sure how to make it. Combine this with my belief that I just paid double the price for the drink, and you can imagine how I'm feeling. At that point I'm just wishing that I never ordered it and am hoping for the best. Instead, I follow my instincts and let it ride, to what was a beautiful conclusion.

I made the mistake of not making it clear that I wanted my turkish to go. I've never switched from annoyance to wonderment so fast - I was handed a beautiful tray, with a tiny porcelain cup and the ibrik my coffee was made in! All of the sudden, I didn't care that it wasn't to go or that I even got double charged. I sat down like a good boy and enjoyed the hell out of my turkish coffee, then got an oolong tea to go on the way out. NEVER order turkish to go - it's a nice experience.

I don't like being overcharged, nevertheless. If the coffee is$3.50, then fine - at least have it on the damn chalkboard! I'll even go as far as to say that $2.00 is a bargain for a nice coffee experience like that and that I'd pay the $3.50 anyway. Just please, don't make me suspect that as a customer I'm being taken advantage of. I'm a guy that lives directly across the street from Spot, and of all the people in Buffalo it really is a special trip for me to go over to Grant and support the business.
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06/05/09 11:42 - 64ºF - ID#48841

Co-op Ownership

Again, I've been thinking about taking the plunge and becoming a member-owner at the Lexington Co-op. I've debated this for as long as I've shopped there, which started about 8 years ago at the old location on Lexington.

I miss that old, tiny, funky store some days. I've almost forgotten what the corner of Elmwood and Lancaster used to looked like prior to the new construction. In the end though, I think the move was great not just for the Co-op but for the neighborhood as a whole. That was a corner that was effectively dead, and if you look at it now people would probably not believe it.

I have some reservations about what exactly it is I'm getting for my $80. The purpose of the money is obvious - it is a direct contribution to the operating budget, amongst other things. The Co-op used to give a flat 2% discount at the register, which they did away with January 1 in lieu of a new program of dividends and member specific discounts. The dividends are given in "profitable years." By their own admission the Co-op has been profitable only about 25% of the time - I'm not confident at all the business is being run profitably because it's easily illustrated that it hasn't been. Maybe the new store will help that over time, but what's the point in trumpeting a dividend program when it's an open question whether or not the business is actually being run like a business?

They give member-only discounts on around 25 basics, including milk and eggs. Ok, fair enough. On their website they characterize it as "every day low prices" on these items - why not give us specifics on that?

I have a problem with substituting a direct, clearly understood benefit for a nebulous benefit. They sell it as being a great program but I'm not a sucker - business plans illustrated as if they were drawn on a paper napkin are not impressive to me.

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I feel like I've just looked at a diagram of quack ecoscience applied to a business model. In the end, I think the major thing the Co-op is relying upon is a sense of altruism from the people who become member-owners. A commitment to the community, so to speak. Sorry, but that's not good enough for me. Is shopping at Wegman's any less of a commitment to the community, based on how they run their business? I or anybody else could take that $80 and put it towards a CSA and achieve the same sense of self-righteousness, but actually see a tangible, realistic benefit. With the 2% dividend, you knew that if you spent a certain amount of money at the store that your initial investment in the store would be recouped. There is no such guarantee with the new plan, and they characterize it as an improvement. As they say in England, do me a favor...

Anybody have experience being a member-owner and care to share for me how you felt about it?
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mike said to mike
Well really I did not bury the hatched in my mind I guess because now 5 years later, I just saw him ...

mike said to mike
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mike said to mike
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