Hour Change

Daytimes, during the school year, have never been busy at the Franchise. A few weeks ago, Greg started talking about opening later during the school year, and the text I just got from him, “Don’t come in tomorrow until 3:30” seems to indicate he’s made his decision.

I think it’s a bad one. I mean, granted, there have been some weekdays where I’ve sat on my butt in the back of the store and read three hundred pages of a thick novel before the first order of the day came in, but there were occasional busy spurts. Really, though, these are the reasons I think it’s a bad idea:

1. With no notice on this hour change, customers will be upset and forced to the ONLY other pizza delivery shop in our area.

2. On days Greg opens at the old-regular time during the week (holidays, school-lunch days), customers won’t know and will be calling our competitor.

3. When the school year ends, customers are going to have to be re-educated to the new hours. This takes time, and I think next summer’s weekday sales will reflect this.

What do I care? Hopefully I won’t be available to deliver pizzas during the afternoon hours on weekdays for much longer, anyway.

Razor Artwork


There’s still no word on Battlestar Galactica’s third-season DVD release, but there is regarding Razor, the Pegasus focused special airing in November (and being released on DVD shortly thereafter with extended footage). The fans are being asked to vote on the DVD’s cover art, here (and there’s a clip of footage, too).

I voted for Art-C.


There Will Be Cowboys and Injuns Above My Bed


Y’know, the blog gets upgraded, and I spent ten minutes trying to figure out where “upload” went — well, it “went” as an option under “Write Post”: a wonderful and sensible choice. As you’ve probably guessed, I was looking to upload the above image: Frederic Remington’s “A Dash For Timber.”

So, a few weeks ago, I saw some lovely maritime art by a fellow named Robert Taylor in a book I found on eBay: “HOOD and BISMARCK” by David Mearns and Rob White ($30 retail, $5 including S&H on eBay). Perusing some online art galleries for more maritime art, I stumbled across the above (by that point, I was filtering my search out to other genres, including landscapes).

That painting reminds me of my childhood. Why? Because for a very long time, a print of it — on canvas — hung on the wall of my parents’ home. They bought it after moving back to Mary’s Land from Texas (as my Mom said when questioned about living there, “Texas would’ve been great, if not for all the Texans”*).

Looking back, as an adult, it seems a little out of my place for my parents: Cowboys? Indians? And since I hadn’t remembered seeing it for, gosh, years and years and years, I e-mailed my Dad about it. A few years ago, he and Mom had taken some of their older furniture to an auction house and I wondered if maybe the print had gone with it. It hadn’t, although the print had never been, as I remembered it, contained within a gaudy gold frame. Meh.

In any case, since it’s just taking up room in their basement, I’m welcome to have it: as soon as I contribute some muscle to moving around furniture to get to it: that and other works of art are sort of stuffed behind some storage units. It’s okay though, soon, I’m going to have cowboys and indians over my bed. That’ll make it all worth it.

And, for the record, this is my favorite Robert Taylor piece.

*Don’t be a hater towards my Mom: turns out, your favorite neighborhood Snay was concieved in Texas, a fact I only recently learned about. Does that make me a Texan by heart?

The Accidental Stalker

Y’know how it is: you accidently cut someone off in traffic, and then you’re trying to let them past you, except they keep making the turns you’re making, and what you’re thinking is, “Holy Shit, are they planning on following me to my destination, dragging me out of my car, and beating the Holy Shit out of me?”

So last night I was driving at the Indy. Around, I dunno, 7pm, I pulled out of the shopping center onto Ashland Road. Ashland ends at York, with westbound traffic having three lanes to choose from: left lane turns left, right lane turns right, middle lane can turn left, right, or go straight into the Hampton Inn. I pulled onto Ashland Road about a second after the light goes green. Left-hand lane has to wait anyway: couple red-light runners from York keep ’em stopped. I enter the intersection about half a second behind the lead car in the left-lane — white Lexus. Although he’s in the left-hand lane, he’s making his turn into York’s right-hand lane. Which, um, is where I am. No problem. The roads may be wet, but I’m paying attention, and brake, and lay my palm on the horn. BWWWWWWAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

He skids over into his proper lane, accelerates, gets well ahead of me, then pulls into the right-lane so he can turn onto Wight Avenue. First off: if you knew you wanted to turn into Wight, why not just be in the middle lane on Ashland to begin with?

In any case, I’m heading out to Falls Road, and I don’t like dealing with Shawan. Ashland -> York -> Wight -> McCormick -> Beaver Dam -> Ivy Hill may not seem like a shortcut, but it’s generally a lot less headachey. White Lexus’ stop was on Ivy Hill, and I kept cussing as he’d put on his blinker for the same turns I was going for. I was sure he was looking at me in his rearview mirror thinking “Holy Shit, is this guy planning on following me to my destination, dragging me out of my car, and beating the Holy Shit out of me?”

So, if you’re reading this, White Lexus, no, I was just trying to get out to Falls Road in one piece. And in the future, make your turn from Ashland from the center lane. It’s a lot safer.


Looking Like a Leper: Ironies & Adventures at Jury Duty

It’s too bad the blog move wiped out the last month’s posts, or I could refer you to the post where I blogged about going to see the O’s v Bosox on August 12th — the O’s came back at the bottom of the 10th to win 6 to 3. I didn’t wear sunscreen to the game, and despite only being in the sun for an hour, got quite a nice sunburn. The following Tuesday I woke up and found myself scratching my forehead — the result has been a very nice bubbling oozing bleeding sore on my forehead which, is thankfully, finally beginning to scab over.

So, I’m fairly certain the sheriffs’ deputies at the Baltimore County District Court thought I was a leper. Or something.

I get nervous about new experiences — particularly since they’re new experiences, and I don’t really know what to expect. Monday and Tuesday I was very anxious about jury service. I’ve lived in Baltimore County for just over eight years, and this was my first time called — consider that county law limits a person to serving just once every three years, and you find a very compelling reason to move from the city (with its booming crime rate) into the lovely county.

Unfortunatly, due to a late night at work, I failed to set aside any clothes for the following day. So Wednesday morning I was scrambling through my closet for a shirt with a collar that would fit — most, unfortunatly, had cat hair on them, from the felines napping in the closet so damn much — and a pair of khaki pants. I wound up with a comfortable gray-button-up that’s seen better days and a pair of pants a size too small. Couple this with my nice forehead sore, and I’m sure I know why people were staying away from me in the jury waiting room. I shouldn’t have spent so much time on my attire — despite the fact that there is, yes, a juror dress code — a lot of people showed up in cargo shorts and t-shirts. Now, given the choice, I’d be happy never to do jury duty in my life, but I know it’s a serious responsibility and at least I did my best to dress respectfully.

If you’ve never had jury duty (or never had it in Baltimore County): you park in the County garage, get a ticket, walk to the court house, go through the metal detector, walk up a flight of stairs, wait in line for ten minutes, then go through a three-person check-in: the first person either does or does not require information from you (presumeably if you failed to mail back the survey that came with the notice); the second person stamps your notice and validates your parking; the third person makes you sign for your lunch pay: $15 in a crisp ten and a crisper five. After herding us all into a seating area, we got to watch a video that explained what we’d experience: let me just say that someone needs to take a look at the AWFUL closed-captioning. Goodness gracious. Oh, yeah: thanks to the stupid bitches in front of me for gossiping the whole while. Show some respect, eh?

I guess it was a slow day at the court — a group got called up right away, but the rest of us were free to mill about (there were several rooms for people to spread out). We got an hour and fifteen minutes for lunch, and upon returning, a judge (can’t think of his name — started with an “S”, I think — Judge Statler?) came down to talk to us and thank us for our service. The gossiping bitches actually stopped talking a few minutes into his talk (…)

I brought Stephen King’s Needful Things. I got 300 pages into the book before my number was called (after lunch). The group I was with was taken up to the 5th floor for jury selection in a case regarding a car stolen from Frankel Acura in Cockeysville. When the judge polled the jury (“Do you know the defendant?” “Have you or anyone in your family been the victim of a crime?”), I rose at one question, my number taken down, and later, was called to the bench for an explanation.

See, about five or six years ago, my parents were living in an apartment complex in Ellicott City after having sold their home and while looking for a smaller place (being empty-nesters and all). One thing they liked about the complex was that many Howard County police officers lived there — and HowCoFive-Oh get to take their cruisers home with them. One night, they parked their 1994 Honda Accord between two marked police cruisers and turned in for the night. The next morning, the cruisers were still there, but their car, and several others from the complex, were gone. Stolen, found in PG County, stripped. Oh well: they bought a Toyota Camry, and a few months later, a townhouse.

Now, after the polling and bench-discussions had occured, the jury was picked. My number wasn’t called. I don’t know that if I had been called my explanation would’ve gotten me a “Respectfully, the defense excuses juror number three-nine-two”, but I found it highly ironic that the theft against my parents that might’ve kept me off of jury duty would end like this: after being dismissed from the court house, I came home to an e-mail from my Mom that begins “Don’t worry, I’m fine!”

Seems while I was in jury duty, Mom was out grocery shopping. On her way home, an elderly gentleman lost control of his car, swerved into the right-side of the Camry, and knocked the car — and my Mom — across a lane of traffic into a jersey wall. Mom was fine “It was unreal – fire trucks and police …”, but laughed when she told me how she found out the Camry was totaled. “I got into the tow truck and remarked to the driver that I didn’t know how the shop was going to put the car back together, and he didn’t answer, and I said, ‘Is it totalled?’ And he said ‘Yess’m!'”

Is it ironic that the car my parents bought to replace the car that was stolen that might’ve kept me off of a jury was totalled on the day I might’ve been on that jury? If I was Alannis Morisette, sure, it’d be ironic: everything’s ironic to that woman.

So. My parents are hunting for a new car, and I’m free from jury duty for three years.

And … we’re baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaack

I cannot say enough to the efforts of Tim and Maiki, who’ve worked wonders in bringing the blog over from my old host. New spam controls, a new dashboard layout … it’s like a whole new blog! Okay, all of my posts from the last month were lost: well, I can be okay with that. Thankfully I haven’t been posting as much lately.

It’s good to be back.

Update (or how I am breaking Snay’s website)

Howdy Snay fans. I am maiki. I am hosting the website, as well as educating Snay on the finer points of blogging, such as using permalinks and backing up his blog’s database.

If you have been keeping up lately, you may notice that a month of posts are gone. His database is dead, having been corrupted by what I surmise are the 55,048 spam comments he was keeping in it. Fortunately, I made a backup a month ago to test the transfer, and that is what we have to work with. Sorry to all of you who commented, I tried my best.

On the brighter side of things, a few of us will be working with Snay to give his weblog a facelift (shhhhh, he doesn’t know yet), as well as automating a bunch of stuff to make sure that we don’t lose any more data.

Things may be a little funky this week, but I am confident we will get all the kinks worked out, and Snay can go back to ignoring his fans while he fulfills his civic duties. ^_^