Showing posts from November, 2013

Love My Team

Actually, not a sports related post...

We really have a great group of people on our IT team. In the 15 years that I've been at the company, I think this is the strongest and most pleasant collection we've had. (We've had really talented people before but they weren't always pleasant - that's just no bueno for the rest of us.)

A few months ago, I started having weekly meetings with our Help Desk and one of the System Admins. We go over project work, talk about what the current challenges/opportunities are and share corporate information.

We also laugh. A lot.

Truly, most of what we talk about is work related but we manage to find the humor in it. I always come out of that meeting with a big smile.

After the first meeting, I walked by the boss and he said, "That sounded like fun in there, I'd like to be in that meeting." I said, "You're not invited." and just kept on walking. He took it in the spirit it was intended but he's really no…

The Road Warrior Surrenders

I was going over my annual blood test results with our Doctor at work. Yes, we have a Doc on site. It's awesome.

Everything is good except that I am low on Vitamin D and a little high on liver enzymes. I'm going to take supplements for the former because an albino shouldn't be a sun seeker and I'm blaming my high blood pressure meds on the latter. Couldn't be anything else, right?

Speaking of blood pressure, she wanted to take mine because it was a tad high when I saw her a few weeks ago. I suspected it was going to be just as high but it was surprisingly in the good range.

Surprisingly, because I've been stressed and anxious for what feels like 24/7 for over a month. I started explaining to her and it all came gushing out. I guess I had bottled some of those feelings up.

Here are some of the things contributing to those emotions. Weekend Vegas trip for Buffett followed by a Buffett show in Phoenix five days later (and ticket issues for both shows) then a week …

I Need A GPS Chip...In My Head!

I was in San Francisco last week for Dreamforce. If you don't know what that is, it's a software conference with a bazillion people with meetings all over the city. Well, all over Union Square.

I went with Sugar Daddy and as long as I was with him, it was OK as he was familiar with the area. As soon as we separated, I was a mess. I was lost on three different days and more than once on two days.


I could get to and from the Moscone buildings OK, well mostly OK. I could get to the Marriott. But, I couldn't get back to Moscone from the Marriott. I also ended up at the Westin on St. Francis instead of the Market one. Then, I still almost missed the Market one because their damn sign is so small.

Oh, and as soon as it was dark out, I was completely toast. The streets were wacky, my phone couldn't find my location very well because phone service in San Francisco flat out sucks and I can't follow a map.

The last night, my cabdriver got an apparently urgent cal…

But I Don't Say "Eh?"!

One of the events at Meeting of The Mind that I help with is the Goody Bag Stuffing. We get over 120 volunteers to help. Some stand behind tables to hand out items while others walk by with open bags to collect the goods.

Before we let in the masses, a few people get everything set up. Since you get to register for convention early if you volunteer, this is a popular gig that you have to volunteer for ahead of time. There's always someone who tries to sneak in so everyone gets checked at the door.

One of my tasks is to go through the line outside and write everyone's name on a stick-on name tag. It's a fun job for me because I get to greet every volunteer and see a bunch of long time pals.

As I go through the line, some people try to hand me their volunteer confirmation. I tell them, "Save that for inside where you'll check in and get your hand stamped. The stamp is so if you have to go to the washroom, you can get back in to the room."
I made that speech a f…

Lean In

I did a quick review on Goodreads of Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg in which I gave it 4 stars out of 5 and said every man and woman should read it. Since then, I've thought back to several points that Sandberg made that have clearly stuck with me.

There's 34 pages of citations so let's just accept her facts and recognize that there are exceptions to every rule, OK?

Women get interrupted more then men. I'll buy that. But, here's the surprising thing. Both men and women equally interrupt men. You'd think we'd be more respectful, but no.

Men apply for more jobs they're not fully qualified for.  I've experienced this in hiring. Men look at a job description and see they can do "some" of the stuff. They then think, "I can learn the rest" and apply for the job. Women look at a job description and if they don't have most of the skills listed, they won't apply. I can't tell you how many men I've interviewed who admitted no kno…

Is Jimmy Coming?

It's the same thing every year at Meeting of The Minds. The whole island buzzes with the question, "Is Jimmy coming this year?" Heck, the questions start even before we get there, "Do you think Buffett will show up?"

Since Buffett has shown up a few times, it always makes the rumors seem plausible and several Trop Rockers have written songs about the wondering experience, it's so prevalent.

My friend Jim managed to work himself up into quite the lather this year about a potential visit by Buffett. He quizzed everyone remotely in the know and pretty much took every rumor at face value. He just couldn't let go of the idea even though we all told him it wasn't going to happen. Of course, the powers that be want you to think it could happen so he never got a straight out, "No, he's not coming" message from anyone. It didn't help that another friend of ours was all over the island telling people Jimmy was definitely coming.

To make Jim&…

I Guess I've Been A Stalker Longer Than I Thought

While the boys and I were wandering throughout Key West, we decided to stop in to Irish Kevin's and catch the show. This is a place where the performers routinely call out people in the audience, get them to come on stage and do crazy stuff and generally heckle the crowd while also playing music.

It was fairly late at night and I must confess that I was beat. I don't think I even ordered a beer. There were two guys on stage and they were playing some good tunes but not really doing the audience participation part that we expected.

We were on the street side of the stage and, as I checked out the performers, I saw whom I thought was My Drummer on far side of the stage.

I wrote this post back in 2006 about My Drummer. I've moved up to capitalizing the title because the story has gone on so long, it's almost mythical. Well, mythical in my world anyway.

After craning my neck and leaning back, I was nearly convinced it was indeed Jim. I was instantly wide awake and excited.…

The Best Time

I love so much about Meeting of The Minds in Key West. So many things to do, friends to see and cocktails to consume. The week just flies by and is oh so fun.

But, there's always one event each year that stands out as the "best". Some sort of cosmic influence brings the stars, people and activity together to make an awesome memory.

This year, the best time was at Thom Shepherd's Redneck Yacht Club Radio show at Smokin' Tuna. Thom's started a new internet radio station and he recorded a show with all sorts of great guests. I'm going to leave some out, sorry, but there were some big Trop Rock names in Jim Morris, Sunny Jim, John Friday and Jerry Diaz. Thom also played as did his girlfriend, Coley.

But, the best part of the show was from a very special guest, Gina Maserati.

We saw Gina walk in towards the beginning of the show and she had a guitar strapped to her back. Our thought was, "Is she going to play?" Well, yep, she was and did. And it was …

Fingering Mr. Utley

It was one of those nights where alcohol was a factor and the entertainment level was off the charts. We cracked ourselves up!

Key West. Thursday night. Long day that started with Registration followed by an afternoon and evening spent on a hotel balcony watching Howard Livingston and the Mile Marker 24 Band and Jimmy and the Parrots. Landshark, Bud Light and Rum consumed in steady quantities.

Dave bought a foam Key West Conchers #1 finger. Why? Well, why not?

He waved it around the hotel room. He waved it around as we roamed the streets, took a wrong turn and fortuitously ended up at Southernmost Point for a photo opp.
He even was happily waving it after he dropped his phone and broke the screen. For the second time since he got the phone.

As we crookedly walked back to our condo, we passed a guy on the street. Dave reached out and touched him with his foam finger, thinking it was funny.

I said, "You realize you just fingered Mr. Utley?"

Dave didn't believe me. Between …

Ugliest Hawaiian Shirt Ever!

I've seen a lot of ugly Hawaiian shirts in my day. We all have. The ones that are so bright, they glow in the dark. The ones that have some sort of psychedelic design that could give you a seizure if you stare at it too long. You know what I'm talking about here. They can be really bad.

However, there is no shirt uglier than what my friend Jeff, also known as Jello Shot Prince, has. And, he wears it to every Buffett concert. Since he and I have gone to more Buffett shows together than we have with anyone else, I have to see the shirt a lot.

The picture above is Jeff at the Phoenix Buffett show this month. I could go back and find a picture from every show we've gone to but I don't want to make you look at the shirt more than you already have.

I think it's so bad that I offered his wife $100 to make it go away. She refused. Not because she thinks it's a good shirt but because he loves it so much. Chalk it up to another reason why I'm single because that thin…

An Evening with Mac and Jake

Mac McAnally just won his sixth CMA Musician of the Year award this week. For those that don't know, Mac plays with Jimmy Buffett in the Coral Reefer Band but he does much more than that.  He's a fantastic songwriter and producer.

And, he's my favorite Muppet. (Never cut your hair, Mac.)

I was reminded that I've verbally told this story many times but hadn't blogged it. It was back in February of 2012 when Mac and Jake Shimabukuro, Ukulele player extraordinaire, did a show at the Mesa Arts Center. Our club Secretary works in the music biz at a radio station and she managed to get the venue to let us set up an information table about the Arizona Parrot Head Club and also got permission for ten of us to go backstage after the show.


This is where I interject with my ongoing fear that I'm going to meet someone I've admired for years and they're going to be having a bad day and be jerky. Then, I'll think about all the time, money and emotion I'…