Monday, December 21, 2015

Odd Bits - The Morning Surprise Edition

So, it’s Saturday morning and I’ve just had a lovely sleep.  I had a few beers Friday evening, so after hauling my tired body out of bed, taking a leak was my first priority. 

There’s nothing like that first morning pee!  It’s such a sweet release, especially if you’ve been lying in bed awhile, too warm and cozy to get up.  So I’m standing there and suddenly it was like the fountain turned off.

You know how sometimes when you’re draining the water in the sink, and the stopper falls in and goes right to the drain and seals it up tight? That’s what it was like, for a moment or two.

And in those moments, all I could think was “WTF?” and gave a little extra push.  Immediately, the logjam broke free and I was able to finish my mission.  But I was puzzled… I had no idea what just happened, nor could I determine the nature of the blockage.

I hadn’t put my contacts in yet, so I was blind as a bat and flying without the sonar.  All I could see was a big mass of bubbles. 

It took me a couple of minutes to put my “eyes” in, which gave the bubbles enough time to dissipate.  Once I could see, I went and took a peek, and sonofabitch, there it was.

A kidney stone.  I’d finally passed one of those goddamned kidney stones and lo and behold, it was completely painless, albeit a bit unnerving. 

I had been laid up with kidney stone pain during Thanksgiving week, and again about 2 months before that.  And I went to the hospital for my first stone, as you may remember, way back in 2013.  But I’d never actually passed anything, as far as I could tell.  (And believe me, I could tell.)

Obviously, I needed to retrieve the stone, a process to which I was NOT looking forward.  Luckily, I had some rubber cleaning gloves in the kitchen, which proved to be just the thing.  No muss, no fuss.  (Well, maybe a little fuss, which sounded like a lot like “Ew ew ew ew.”)

So now, I am able to bring to you, in full Technicolor glory:

Tada!  A 5-mm kidney stone.  (What?  Of course I measured it.)

If my 2013 x-rays were correct, this means I still have a 7-mm stone and another 5-mm one rattling around in the bladder.  I guess I’ll have to remain vigilant and be careful where I point this thing, lest I put somebody’s eye out.

The Marketing Awakens
Did anybody notice this new movie that came out Thursday night?  Something about some kind of astral skirmish?

Yeah, even the Amish were going, “OK, we get it.  The new Star Wars is coming out.”

I’ve never seen such a pervasive marketing campaign.  Every other commercial had a Star Wars tie-in, even if neither the product nor the theme of the commercial was applicable.

It made me wonder how necessary all of that really is.  I mean, this is one of the most highly anticipated movies I can ever recall.  They probably could have saved a truckload of money and just ran a few trailers.

Or maybe the advertisers were paying Lucasfilm for the rights to use Star Wars in their commercials.  Advertising all the way to the bank.

I also wonder if the toys are going to be as popular as they used to be.  Remember, in the 70s and 80s, kids still played with molded plastic toys that didn’t light up, beep or interact with other toys.  (Of course, maybe the new toys do that now, I don’t know.)  Or, maybe all the Star Wars fans from the originals will buy up all the toys just to save for another 30 years and sell to a new generation of nerds.

I’ve never been a Star Wars fanatic, but I do like the films.  I wanted to make sure I saw it early on, just to avoid encountering spoilers, so I decided to see it last Friday as a matinee.  I was off from work, so I figured it would be the best time.  Most people were still at work and school was still in session.  I didn’t see the need to buy the tickets in advance. 

I began desperately rethinking that decision once I hit the movie theater parking lot.  It was jammed!  I had to park way back in the outskirts of the lot.  I was really hoping I wouldn’t have to hang around for two more hours for the next showing.

Fortunately, my fears were short-lived.  There was no one in line and there were still plenty of seats in the theater.  (I had to sit on the side, though, but that was no big deal.)  I figured all the cars in the lot were from holiday shoppers, not movie-goers.

(NO, I didn’t dress in costume and I didn’t see anyone else dressed up either.  Maybe they only come out at night.)

Anyway, I loved the movie.  There were a number of times I got chills, like the first time you see Han Solo and Chewie get onboard the Millennium Falcon, and then the first time Han and Leia see each other.

I saw it in 3D and I recommend you do so as well.  It seemed worth the extra couple bucks.  There was one incredible shot I remember, where one of those large, wedgie, triangular starships came onscreen, and the tip of the ship seemed to hang out halfway over the audience.

It’s no secret that there are two more movies to follow, in addition to three spinoffs, so I wasn’t surprised when the ending came with a giant cliffhanger.  (OK, maybe not literally, but you’re dying to see what comes next.)

So if you like the franchise, I don’t think you’ll be disappointed in this edition.  And if you don’t, then go see “Sisters,” with Tina Fey and Amy Poehler (like I will next weekend.)

Saw this on Facebook and couldn’t decide how to debunk it… long version or short version. 

Short version: Just like a significant number of Christians.

But I still have some room here, so let me expand.

Who was it that campaigned tirelessly to continue bans on same-sex marriage, urge clerks to ignore Supreme Court rulings and maintain the marginalization of gays?  Evangelical Christians, Mormons, and Baptists.

Who would prefer a Muslim president over an atheist president?  The majority of Americans, (who happen to be 70% Christian), as per a recent poll.

Who is it that is fear-mongering right now over non-Christians and trying to institute a religious litmus test for immigrants, thus setting aside Article Six of the Constitution?  Christians.

Christians love to talk about religious freedom, as long as that religion is their own.  Anybody else?  Screw’em.

And who is it circulating memes like this to try to take a bite out of liberals?  Christians.  Or Republicans.  Whichever.

One can also make a secondary parry to this thrust by noting that it’s not mainstream Muslims (contrary to what Fox “News” so frequently reports) who are trying to wipe out anything that doesn’t conform to their standards.  It’s the radical terrorist wing-nuts who are doing that.

So, much like judging all musicians by looking at Ted Nugent, I can’t judge all Christians by the wing-nuts who are battling LGBT, Feminists, Atheists, Socialists, etc., nor can anyone else judge the billions of Muslims on the planet by the fanaticism of these ISIS bastards.

So the next time these meme-makers want to make a point about keeping out the Muslims, I suggest they just own their racism and xenophobia and stop trying to get cute with semantics in place of a coherent rationale.


Mary Ann said...

"On the rocks" just took on a whole new meaning. Be well. Stay healthy for a happy new year.

Cassie said...

First thing, I was reading this while eating, and I didn't even feel grossed out. So even two years out of practice, I've still got the nursing touch.

I haven't seen Star Wars. Matt really wants to, so I'm making him go with a friend of mine. Problem solved.

And oh. I have GOT to stop reading the comments section on any post ever about anything. Ever again. Unless it's something from someecards, because typically it's funny. But anyone with two thumbs and an opinion just come right on out of the woodwork now don't they? I feel skeevy just reading their dreck.

bluzdude said...

Grossed out? I didn't even write anything gross... just a little pee. I mean, I could have went full-on gross...

I 100% agree with you though, about comments in "any post ever about anything." Subject doesn't matter; the comment will inevitably devolve into partisan sniping, most of which is so ridiculous, you wonder how these people ever figured out how to use a computer. Or cell phone.

bluzdude said...

I'm looking forward to a nice, quiet vacation. Tomorrow is my last work day until January. Just glad I got all that "being sick" out of the way early this year. (Last year it started on Christmas day.)

Mary Ann said...

Using a computer or cell phone is All these goobers know. Most can't conceive a thought nor construct a sentence.
LOL Loads of Lard.
Happy, healthy Holidays.

Jono said...

No one would accuse you of shooting blanks now. Point that thing somewhere else! It might be loaded!
I like movies, but live too far from theaters to see them early on. I have learned patience if nothing else.
Everyone seems to have their political undies in a bundle when it comes to comments and social media. Seems like only a few percent want to engage in any kind of intelligent conversation, and they are quickly drowned out. Hopefully, but not likely, everyone will see through the B.S. come November.

bluzdude said...

How I long for the days of intelligent, honest debate.