Saturday, January 29, 2005

Inspired somewhat by John Sherck’s post about life as seen through the eyes of children, I thought I’d share a couple of mistaken notions I had as a kid.

As I’ve mentioned many times in the past, my father worked for a major oil corporation for most of his working years. When buying gas for his own car, he would usually try to fill up at one of his company’s gas stations.

I noticed that every time he’d fill up, that he’d use a credit card. For the longest time, I thought the credit card was something only given to employees and that they showed it when they gassed up, so they’d get their gas for free! I’d thought it was an employee fringe benefit! My father died laughing when I asked him about this one time.


As a kid, I never believed in anything like the stork bringing babies. I’d always been vaguely aware of the sex act, despite never having witnessed such a thing.

The misconception came in when I thought this was something only done to have babies, and even then, it wasn’t a purposeful thing. I had the bizarre notion that when a couple wanted to have a baby, they merely went to bed together naked and kind of just rolled around together in their sleep.

Needless to say, this was one misconception that was quickly cleared up for me, both the idea that people did it only to make babies, and the idea that it happened only by accident.

I just shake my head now that I ever believed such a thing.

Saturday, January 22, 2005

Dogs Helping the Police

'm sure by the title of this post, you thought I was going to write about K9 units. While such trained dogs are, without a doubt, valued members of any police force, the type of canine assistance I'm referring to was much more informal.

Though trained dogs are useful to police, officers are also commonly helped by average, garden-variety, neighborhood mutts as well. The way such dogs were useful was in the apprehension of fleeing suspects on foot.

As everyone knows, dogs are territorial. They know who belongs in their neighborhood and who doesn't. Any time a suspect is running from the police, especially in residential areas at night, dogs will kick up a ruckus until there is a neighborhood bark-a-thon.

Pursuing officers, if they listen carefully to the sequence and patterns of the barking, can many times find the direction the suspect took by following the trail of barking, just as surely as if the dogs were holding up signs pointing the direction and saying, "He went that-a-way"!

I saw this happen many times during my years on the force, and I quickly learned to pay attention to barking dogs in such instances.

Thursday, January 20, 2005

50 Things I Believe

1. Stupid people are always ignorant, but ignorant people are not always stupid.
2. Everything happens for a reason.
3. Different strokes for different folks.
4. There is most likely other intelligent life somewhere in the universe.
5. I work to live, I don't live to work.
6. Minds are like parachutes; in order to function properly, they must be open.
7. Don't shit in your own backyard.
8. You can tell a lot about a man by the way he treats his mother.
9. Shit happens, despite the best of intentions and precautions.
10. Washing your car causes rain. So does leaving your windows down overnight.
11. Time heals all wounds and wounds all heels.
12. The squeaky wheel gets the grease.
13. The purpose of life is to enjoy it.
14. Think for yourself.
15. Intentional celibacy is unnatural.
16. All work and no play make John and Mary exceedingly dull people.
17. Freedom FROM religion is as important as freedom OF religion.
18. You can't successfully nor ethically legislate morality.
19. Victimless "crimes" should be decriminalized or legalized.
20. Image without substance is worthless.
21. No one should be denied health care or education for lack of money
22. Pets are good for your health.
23. Eat right, keep fit, die anyway
24. Prisons should be reserved solely for violent offenders. Alternative methods
of punishment should be used for non-violent criminals.
25. Assisted suicide should be a legal option for the terminally ill.
26. Actions speak louder than words; talk is cheap
27. Human beings are not naturally monogamous.
28. What you know should be more important than who you know.
29. Don't beat a dead horse.
30. You can hide garbage in a closet, but it doesn't keep it from stinking.
31. Work smarter, not harder.
32. Normal is boring.
33. Mental fitness lasts longer than physical fitness.
34. Don't judge a book by its cover.
35. "Everyone else does" isn't a reason; it's an excuse.
36. There's nothing as overrated as a bad fuck, nor as underrated as a good shit.
37. Don't work yourself out of a job.
38. Motives are as important as actions, and often are more important.
39. Censorship has no place in a free society.
40. It's easier to be busy than it is to try to merely look busy.
41. If there's a heaven, it's for everyone.
42. Different is not a synonym for wrong.
43. Children are not born as blank slates to write upon. People are born with their
basic personality and temperament. I've seen too many good people who come
from bad families, and bad people who come from good families to believe
44. Knowledge is power.
45. Only a dog wants a bone.
46. Drive as if you expect other drivers to screw up. They will rarely disappoint you.
47. The weaker the argument, the louder the voice.
48. Be yourself.
49. A dime, two nickles and ten pennies are not exactly the same, but they are
equal in value. The same is true of different kinds of people.
50. What's good for the goose is good for the gander.

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Penis Euphemisms

Following below is a list of euphemisms commonly and not-so-commonly used to substitute for the more clinical, “penis”. I didn’t come up with all of these myself; I found a site full of penis slang, Woody's World of Penis Euphemisms.

Before I begin, I’d like to note that two of Infamous J’s best male friends have first names that are penis euphemisms: Peter and Will(ie). Hmmm…..

Dick, cock, prick, dong, schlong, boner, hammer, tool, Johnson, twenty-first digit, all-day sucker, anaconda, the bald avenger, banana, bat and balls, battering ram, bayonet, beaver cleaver, bed snake, best leg of three, blue veined jackhammer, box buster, bushwhacker, candy cane, cattle prod, chick sticker, cigar, clit tickler, crankshaft, cream filled meat stick, crotch rocket, custard cannon, dangling participle, Darth Vader, dipstick, doughnut holder, earthworm, early riser, equipment, executive staff member, family jewels, fire hose, fishing rod, flesh tornado, Foofer, fuck stick, fuzz buster, gear shift, gluestick, hairy Houdini, hanging chad, herman the one eyed German, high pressure vein cane, the home wrecker, hooded warrior, hot dog, impaler, impregnator, jack in the box, jizz whiz, joy stick, kick stand, kidney wiper, kielbasa, King Dong, lance of love, leader of the sack, Lewinski lunch, leaky faucet, licking stick, lizard, lollipop, Long Dong Silver, Louisville plugger, Longrod von Hugenstein, love leg, magic wand, Major Woody, man root, master blaster, mayonnaise cannon, meat n’ potatoes, member, middle leg, Mr Happy, Moby Dick, morning glory, Mr Goodbar, muff marauder, nightstick, nut cannon, organ, other head, package, palm pilot, pecker, pants snake, pearl pole, passion pistol, phallus, piccolo, pickle, piece, pig in a blanket, pile driver, pink cigar, piss pump, piston rod, pocket rocket, pointer, pole, probe, PR-24, prong, pussy pounder, quarter pounder with cheese, ramrod, Richard Cranium, root of all evil, rolling pin, salami, sausage, schwanz, Sgt. Stiffy, serpent, shaft, sex pistol, short arm, skin flute, Slim Jim, slut stick, Spermin’ Herman, spigot, spunk trunk, super soaker, tallywhacker, thrill drill, tickle pickle, titan missile, toys for twats, trouser snake, ugly stick, unit, upright citizen, vagina miner, Vlad the impaler, wang, wand, weiner, wick, whore hammer, whopper, womb broom, zipper ripper.

To read the entire list, visit Woody’s World of Penis Euphemisms:

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

All In a Day's Work

Police work is serious business. But not always…

One time, two officers had been hunting one guy who had a warrant out for his arrest for dealing drugs. The warrant was several weeks old, as the man had been successful so far at evading arrest. Finally, one officer got a tip that the suspect frequented a particular “liquor house” on the south side of town.

The officer decided to park his car up the street a bit, behind a dumpster, and wait to see if the suspect would appear. The second officer drove up awhile later and parked next to him with his car faced in the opposite direction. They waited for awhile, each remaining in his own car. When it looked as if he wasn’t going to show and they were getting ready to give up for the night, the guy finally appears, leaving the liquor house.

Both officers threw their car doors open, eager to nab the suspect. However, it was a narrow street and the cars were parked very close together. Both car doors slammed into each other in mid-swing, neither opened far enough to enable the officers to exit their vehicles.

While they were struggling to get out of their cars, the suspect spotted them and began laughing his ass off. Before the officers could get it together and bail out from their passenger doors, the suspect had hauled ass. Gone again…

Another time, an officer responded to a call to a domestic dispute; an entire family of rednecks duking it out in the front yard. He raced to the scene and quickly parked the car when he saw the fighting still going on, hot and heavy, as he arrived. He was so intent on breaking up the fight that he’d paid no attention to where he’d parked. He threw the door open and jumped out…..and fell, six feet down into a drainage ditch! Seeing this, the rednecks immediately stopped fighting and laughed themselves silly at the sight of this officer sprawled in the ditch, covered in muddy water.

When out on patrol, most officers usually returned to the station if they had to go to the bathroom, especially for a “major transaction”. The upstairs men’s restroom, not available to the public, was the preferred place to conduct such business. One day, our shift lieutenant had returned to the station for just this purpose. Just as he’d settled himself to begin, one of the other officers called him on the radio.

“What’s your 10-20 (location)?”

“I’m 10-91 (at the station).”

“I’m 10-91, too. But where are you, 10-91?”

The lieutenant didn’t want to explain to every yahoo in the county with a police scanner that he was taking a crap, so he merely keyed the mike and flushed the toilet.

“Teeeeeeeeeeeeeeen-four!” the other officer replied.

One warm spring day, an officer was riding down the town’s main drag, with the window open, enjoying the sunshine. Suddenly, a bee flew into the car and went down his shirt. Because the officer was allergic to bee stings, he immediately stopped the car, right there in traffic, and jumped out. Standing there in the middle of the road, he ripped his shirt off and began dancing all around, hoping that the bee would fly away. A very short time later, the dispatcher got a call from a citizen advising them they had a drunken cop in the middle of Main Street and that they needed to send someone to go pick him up!

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

My Most Embarrassing Moment

Like most people, I’ve had several embarrassing things to happen to me in my life. What I am about to relate, however, is probably my most embarrassing moment.

One evening in the early nineties, I decided to drive thirty miles to a larger town to visit a bookstore, bringing my then preteen son along with me.

Not long after we arrived and my son had gone off to look at the kids’ books, I was hit by severe stomach cramps. I tried to ignore it, hoping it would go away, but the pain only increased. I knew that I had to find a bathroom -- fast!

The store had a public restroom; a single toilet bathroom meant to be used by both sexes. And I got to it just in time. No sooner than I’d sat on the toilet than I was hit with extreme diarrhea. I sat there for several minutes, not wanting to get up until I was sure I was through. Several times, I thought I was done, but had to sit down again for another wave.

Finally, the stomach pain abated. I flushed the toilet and moved to wash my hands. But I never heard that “glug-glug-glug” sound a toilet makes after a successful flush, so I turned to see what the problem was. To my dismay, the water in the toilet was rising rapidly and it overflowed as I watched. And kept overflowing until the water and unmentionable stuff was two inches deep on the bathroom floor and was flowing out the bottom of the door onto the sales floor.

Normally, in such an instance, in the usual public, multi-stalled restroom, I’d just quietly slink away from the scene of the crime, as no one would know who’d done it. But in this instance, I was trapped. I’d asked a salesclerk where the bathroom was, so they’d know who’d done it, if I simply slunk out of the store. And because I wanted to be able to come back there again to buy books, sneaking out wasn’t an option.

And I didn’t want to leave the bathroom to search for a salesperson to tell them what had happened, as another person could have gone into the bathroom and found the mess while I was doing that.

Looking around the bathroom, I saw several rolls of paper towels, so I cleaned up the nastiest part of the mess as well as I could, stuffing their trashcan full of dirty towels. I did all this with my stomach still on the queasy side. However, there was still the water and some residual nastiness to deal with after I’d used up all the towels.

I poked my head out the door and got the attention of a passing salesclerk, asking him to bring me a mop and a bucket, explaining that the toilet had overflowed. After it was brought, I cleaned it up as quickly as I could.

Finally, I came out. The manager thanked me for cleaning it up, and mentioned, offhandedly that they’d been having that problem with the toilet for some time. More than a little put out, I asked why hadn’t it been fixed and why wasn’t there a sign in the bathroom warning people of the problem, as I’d have run next door to the Burger King to use the bathroom had I known their toilet was malfunctioning. He mumbled some sort of an excuse about their budget, but said he’d put up a sign.

I left soon thereafter, and it was over a year before I went to that store again.

Feel free to share your own embarrassing moments in the comment section.

Monday, January 10, 2005

Animal Cooperation

Several years ago, my local TV news station did a story about a dog and cat who lived with the same family. The story was rather unusual, to say the least, and I’ve remembered it all this time.

Both the dog and cat were female and had become pregnant around the same time. As the gestation period for dogs and cats is roughly equivalent, they both gave birth during the same week. Unfortunately, all the cat’s kittens died.

The pups, however, were all born healthy. But the mother dog was completely indifferent to them, doing nothing to care for them. She was on a long chain attached to a tree in the back yard and would drag her pups back and forth with the chain as she walked.

The mother cat observed this state of affairs and evidently decided to take matters into her own hands, figuring that the mother dog was useless.

One by one, she picked up the pups and took them to the nest she’d made for her dead kittens. The mother dog did not protest, seemingly oblivious. Once she had the entire litter situated, she nursed them and looked after them.

As the pups grew, they considered the cat their mother in every way, and ignored their true mother, who still remained oblivious to them. I have to wonder how these dogs turned out as adults; did they have more “catlike” personalities or were they indistinguishable from other dogs? At any rate, they owe their lives to the cat’s caring and quick thinking.

Saturday, January 8, 2005

Insomnia Remedies

I don’t have insomnia all that often. It usually occurs when I’ve got a lot on my mind and I can’t settle down enough to sleep, and less often, when I’m sick.

Having sex will cure the restless mind problem, but I have a few mind games I play when I’m alone and can’t sleep.

Everyone has heard of counting sheep, but I've always thought that was boring, so I made up two solutions of my own, which are both variations on the same theme.

In the first, I’ve been dumped off somewhere out in the country, naked, and it’s the middle of winter. As I start walking to find some sort of shelter, I begin to find articles of clothing in the snow. First, I’ll find underwear, then I visualize myself putting it on, relieved at how it helps me feel just a little bit warmer. Then a t shirt, shorts, then long pants, a heavier shirt, and so on. As I pull on each piece of clothing, I note how it makes me feel that much warmer. Most of the time, I’m asleep before I am fully dressed for the weather conditions.

In the second scenario, I find myself naked in a huge cylinder orbiting the Earth. It is bare metal and the only thing provided for my survival is breathable air and the temperature isn’t TOO cold for survival. I don’t have anything else, not even gravity; I’m floating in darkness. I begin to think of what I would need to make myself my more comfortable…when I soon discover that wishes become reality.

It starts off much in the same way as the first scenario does, with me being slowly clothed in comfortable clothing and feeling more relaxed with each step. Once I’m dressed, I think it would be nice if I could see and, immediately, there are lights. Then gravity, and I’m slowly lowered to the bottom of the cylinder. Then a floor over the bare metal, then walls to form a room. Then a carpet, a bed, blankets, pillow, and a table. Then a bathroom and a kitchen. Then books, TV, computer, DVDs. A window to look out at the Earth. And finally, a woman to share my orbiting home with, later becoming more. Most of the time, I don’t make it to the end of this fantasy, either.

Anyone else have their own versions of the counting sheep remedy?

Tuesday, January 4, 2005

Everything Happens for a Reason

Many times during my life, I’d hear my father say that everything happened for a reason, whether or not we understood just what that reason was at the time. And, more often than not, I’ve seen this proven to be true.

Yesterday was such a time. Late in the afternoon, I left the house a little later than I'd intended, on my way to work. After I’d passed over the interstate and had driven about another two miles, I saw cars backed up ahead of me, shunted into one lane, and slowed to a crawl. Flashing lights from several emergency vehicles lit up the sky, now approaching dusk, with another fire truck arriving as I did. I was a little irritated, concerned that I might be late for work.

As I slowly inched forward, I saw that traffic from the oncoming direction had been detoured over the wide grassy median and cars now slowly approached in the lane we’d been diverted out of.

It was then that I noticed just what had caused the detour. First, I noticed a wrecker pulling a car up the side of an embankment on the far side, with people standing by watching the progress. But then I saw the other vehicle -- what remained of it-- still on the opposite side of the road, facing in the wrong direction, with glass and debris strewn in a wide arc around it.

The car had been so badly damaged that I couldn’t tell what model or make it had been before the accident. The only distinguishing feature still discernible was the color: silver. It was now nothing more than a mangled, twisted piece of scrap metal. The entire front end of the vehicle was gone, pushed back into what would be the back seat area of a four door sedan.

As I slowly crept past, I realized that no one in that car could have possibly survived the accident. Even after I’d cleared the wreck and driven on, traffic moved slower than usual, the drivers no doubt in shocked horror over what they’d just seen.

I likely would have left the house about ten minutes earlier than I did that day, had Infamous J not come online to talk to me for a few minutes before I left for work. J and I rarely IM at this particular time of day, but she’d wanted to wish me luck as I started my new shift on my job.

As I drove the remaining miles to work yesterday, I couldn’t help but think what could have happened had she not come online to talk. It’s quite possible that I could have been at that very spot when the accident occurred, perhaps getting caught up in it myself, if not for her.

But as my father always said, everything happens for a reason.

Monday, January 3, 2005

On Not Driving

Inspired by Longrider’s entry about his time as a driving instructor, I thought I’d make a driving related entry of my own.

Or, rather, an entry about NOT driving.

My father had two siblings, a brother and a sister, who have never driven. Neither have ever lived in an urban area, where public transportation is plentiful, where not driving would not be terribly unusual or maladaptive. Both have lived their entire lives in a rural area, where driving is an absolute must unless you want to spend a lot of time waiting for others to come pick you up or be stranded at home.

My father never could understand how his siblings could be content being so dependent on others to get around. He always wondered if he was the adopted child, as his outlook and his life was totally different from theirs. My Dad loved to drive and always had the nicest car he could afford. When I was a child, we’d take road trips all over the country during the summer, and he’d never let anyone else take the wheel. So, it was totally foreign to him to have two siblings completely uninterested in driving.

My sister didn’t drive for many years. Though she is ten years my senior, I actually got my driver’s license before she did. She’d taken driver’s ed in high school, but had gotten off on the wrong foot and had developed a complex about driving. She just gave up trying to learn. Finally, when she was thirty, she got herself together and got her license. When I asked her what had prompted her to do so, she told me that she’d gotten sick and tired of waiting around for people to come pick her up and having to come and go at other people’s convenience.

As for me, I couldn’t wait to be old enough to drive and I got my license at the earliest opportunity. Like my father, I’ve always driven the nicest car I could afford, and I prefer being the driver to being a passenger. Unlike him, I hate long road trips; more than two hours in a car and I begin to get antsy.


Saturday, January 1, 2005

A New Year's Tradition

When I was growing up, my father had his own New Year’s ritual that, as far as I knew, none of the other families in the neighborhood did.

Each year, just before midnight, my father would go out the back door of the house and walk around to the front door. As soon as the new year had arrived, he’d come in the front door and throw change on the floor, so as to insure prosperity in the year to come.

My own contribution to the celebration was to take my trumpet or French horn out into the front yard and add my sound to that of the neighbors beating pots and pans and setting off fireworks.

May everyone have a happy and prosperous New Year.