Madonna Sing-a-Long

C’mon Girls! Do you believe in love?

I’m just going to put this out there.

I enjoy listening to Madonna.

The other day, I pulled out her “Immaculate Collection” CD from my music assortment. I popped it into my car’s CD player and put it on shuffle.

You know, commuting in and out of Vancouver is much more pleasant when you sing along to music. Boy, do I love to sing along!

Sitting in my car is a crocheted BB-8 that hangs out by my cup holder. I’ll pick him up by the head and flip him around as I drive. His ass makes a great impromptu microphone. Occasionally I’ll stick it in my family’s face to try and get them to sing along as well. A lead singer needs his back up vocals!

Rocking down the highway to some classic Madonna makes me happy. I know most of the lyrics to Madonna’s songs from the 80’s and 90’s. Some of the lyrics I mumble or sing incorrectly for fun. Even though I belt them out, I still have to have her music cranked up. It drowns out my inability to sing. But I sure look like I’m having fun.

So I take a note from one of Madonna’s lyrics:

Express what I got,

oh baby ready or not

Express yourself!

Taiko No Tatsujin

We picked up the Nintendo Switch this past Christmas for the family. Originally we weren’t planning on buying it. There was just a handful of games that we thought to be worthwhile. That is until we heard in the fall that a favorite game was coming available.

Taiko no Tatsujin

Drum ‘n’ Fun!

This game is so fast and has some great songs. Mind you most of the songs are from anime or video games. But ones that we recognize at the same time. We love the game because it reminds us of our trip to Japan.

One of our Days in Japan was spent wandering around the various arcades. This is where we discovered the “Table Flip” game, the “Drum ‘N’ Fun” game and many crane games. The joy our children experienced playing these games made us desperately want to recreate it. We even tried to pick up a Nintendo 3DS version of the game while in Tokyo, but it wouldn’t work on our North American systems.

Now that we have it in our home, we love to play it. My arms are getting a great workout as I try and keep up with the beats to the drum. On the easy level.

I was online the other day and stumbled across this video of one of the songs being played on a real drum kit. Just look at the joy about halfway through.

Check out the video: Drum!

I almost want to get the “Drum” controller for our system to add to the realism. Hey honey! My birthday is coming up soon…

The Floater

My experience at work has me jumping from location to location in my home terminal. Which makes me feel uneasy and a bit doubtful of my abilities.

Am I that good- that my work can move me willy nilly all over the place? Or am I that bad- that they can’t figure out a good place for me?

I’d like to think it’s the first option. I am pretty good at a couple of the locations. But I think I’m just middle of the road when it comes to others.

What has happened now is that I have become a “Floater“. My coworkers say to me, “Didn’t I see you someplace else last week?” Or “Weren’t you at a different location? Are you going to stay here permanently?” I have become like a human version of the eye floater. Appearing in your vision for a moment, just to disappear as you try and focus on me. It feels like I’m here but not.

In the end, I guess I’m reliable enough to help out where needed. Arrive in a flash and gone in an instant- leaving behind nothing more than a memory of my presence.

Joe- The Human Eye Floater

Joey At Play

This evening I’m going out with a couple of friends. No kids or wives will be joining us. I rarely have a Saturday night like this. I have to plan these “play dates” well in advance. Mostly to prepare my family for the fact that I won’t be home.

I’m looking forward to tonight. But it won’t be like the days of yore. I won’t be getting crazy drunk or having a late night. Just a couple of hours spent in North Vancouver. Some tacos and a couple of beers are the extravagant plans. It’s the company that I will be with that shall make the evening enjoyable and memorable.

I may share a photo or two on social media, but I am hoping to not to pull out my phone at all. That is until I leave to come home. At which point, I’ll call my wife to let her know I’m on my way. Which is a courtesy that my wife and I have for one another when not together.

A call to say, “Hey! I’m on my way. Love ya.” Even a few hours away from her means I’ll still miss her company. She has become an extension of my personality. So have my kids. And as I make memories and experiences, I love them to be with me as often as possible.

But tonight is a “Guy’s Night” where we will talk about our families and work. This gents are similar to me in many ways- where they put their family’s needs first. These are the kind of guys I prefer to associate with.

Late Night Blackhole

Last night I fell into a vortex of mind numbing uselessness. I finally recovered at around 2:30am, but the damage was done. I had slipped into a hellscape I was worried I would not be able to escape.

I blame ALF.

You see, the other night I downloaded TUBI on our PS4. Free movies and tv shows? Why not? Unfortunately most of the shows are B movie style. The type of show that is more filler than anything. But I did find some cartoons that I am going to watch with my kids. The original “GIJoe” and “Sailor Moon”. So that’s cool.

I also found “ALF”. So I began watching it. The show is awful. Like train wreck that the network had invested too much money into to stop. Watching the show, I went onto IMDB and fell into a rabbit hole. Searching out tidbits about the show, the actors, and anything else.

It got me to searching for “Garbage Pail Kids”. One of the actors collected the . I remember these stickers from my childhood. Sharing these on the playground when I was in grade 2. It was a way of expressing potty humor and not getting caught. It also created new insults and name calling if your name happened to be close to one of the characters.

Not only were “Garbage Pail Kids” highly sought after. So were “Wacky Packages”. Taking all the name brands and putting a gross or silly spin on them. By grade 6, I had the entire collection. I wonder where they are now…?…

But I digress. ALF is not a good show. Please Hollywood- do not Reboot it.

You Know You’re A Grown Up When…

Holy crap. My excitement level today shouldn’t have been so high. But it was. All because of a new Washing Machine. What is wrong with me?

Yesterday morning I mentioned our experience thus far with Home Depot Service. Later, a friend of mine asked if I got a phone call regarding the delivery. I in fact did receive an automated call at 5:30pm last night. Followed by a text message 5 minutes later. This is serious business folks! As you can see, it mentioned that the delivery would be between 11am And 3pm. No big deal- I was home for the day.

This morning at 10:30 I got a call from the delivery guy saying he’d be at our home by 11. Then he called my wife’s cellphone and told her the same thing. It was followed up by an automated call at 10:50 telling me they would soon be here. Ahhhh!!!

At 10:55 the truck was unloading our new washer. I didn’t even get a chance to take a photo of the box it came in. One guy was already removing our old washer out of our house at this time. I did get out and check for any damage and cosmetics of our new washer. Pristine.

At 11:05 they were done. Old washer gone- new one installed. Like magic little elves at Christmas- these guys were gone in a flash. So quickly in fact that I couldn’t even pick them out in a police lineup. Outstanding.

At 11:25 I received another automated call asking how my delivery and installation went. I gave all of the questions a “5 out of 5” rating.

In the end, Home Depot Services called me 7 times and texted me twice about our washing machine. All of the phone calls built up my excitement. About a washing machine! Not an upcoming birthday, or a new movie or even an exotic vacation. But a laundry device.

If a new washer can spark this kind of joy, I couldn’t imagine getting all new appliances for my kitchen at the same time. I’d probably die of a heart attack.

Home Depot Service

On Saturday, my wife and I reluctantly went out and bought a new washing machine after my attempt to Repair our old one. We hit the Home Depot that I used to work at and checked out the appliances. My wife wasn’t overly thrilled with the sales associate because he did most of the talking to me. Part of it was because he remembered me from years ago. Part of it was a little bit that he seemed kind of… sexist. He only spoke to my wife about how to do laundry not the purchase itself.

Anyhow, we bought the machine and arranged delivery and installation. As well as removal of the old machine. The sales associate told me I’d get a call Wednesday evening to confirm the delivery on Thursday. I’m waiting for that call. But in the meantime…

On Monday I received a call going over the contract and the delivery guidelines. It was a reiteration of what the sales associate said as well as the contract I was given to read.

Cool. Thanks. I guess. She seemed friendly.

Tuesday I got a text telling me about the call I’ll be getting later today. A bit of overkill really. I will say Home Depot is definitely all about the customer service. So that makes me happy.

I can’t wait to get my call tonight to confirm my delivery tomorrow. As well as a call tomorrow to confirm my delivery.

And most likely a Follow Up call to see how my service and delivery was.

Crazy. But it will likely make me return to them if they put in that much effort.

Blue Monday

Yesterday was Blue Monday. The most depressing day of the year.

I have not had a string of good luck lately. From nearly Losing a dog the other day to having a Washing Machine Die– even one of our stovetop burners burned out. My days have been rather crap-tastic. Why would Blue Monday be any better?

Because it wasn’t.

My day started like any other day. I was having a shower at 4:30am when the water just stopped. I jumped out of the shower and rushed downstairs to hear our water pump still going. Not a good sign. So I shut off the breaker to the pump.

Underneath our home was flooded. Turns out our well water corroded the shut off and snapped the pipe. I called into work to say I’d be late and contemplated my options. Get a plumber or try and deal with this myself? After dropping a few hundred dollars on a new Washing Machine, I knew the answer. I got my tools, checked the part I needed, then drove off and waited for Home Depot to open… at 7am.

I was in and out of Home Depot within ten minutes. Kind of a record for me. When I got home, I began my repair.

Low and behold!!!— I broke another part of the pipe. Just like when I was repairing the line to our Pressure tank in November.

It was now closer to 8am, so I drove up to the much closer Co-Op store to see if they had the part. While there, I ran into our neighbor from across the street (who is always there for breakfast) and a friend of ours. But I had no time to chit-chat. I had a mission.

I found the parts I needed. Spending close to twice the amount I would have had I gone to Home Depot again… I finished the repair properly, cleaned up and headed into work.

I do enjoy DIY. But not in emergency situations. Those suck. Some of my coworkers are surprised that I can do plumbing. Others are of the same mindset as me- why pay someone when I am completely capable of doing it myself?

Blue Monday got me all depressed about being a home owner in an older house. Times like yesterday make me want to throw the house on the market and run away. But I love this home. And I’m not sure when we will move. Maybe when the pipes burst….again.

Doggo Sitting

In the past when we have gone on vacation, we have left our dog, Lex Luthor with friends, family or at a Kennel. He has always been returned to us happy and healthy.

However, the one time he stayed at my sister’s place, he escaped within the first few hours. I received a phone call from someone who had collected Lex. My sister felt so awful about him breaking free that she would never look after him again. I wasn’t mad at her, he was quite the energetic dog when we first got him. Even in the first week of us adopting him, he jumped our fence and wandered the neighborhood (without us knowing). Lex is much older now and far less active.

An old friend of mine asked if we could look after their puppy while they were out of town. He’s a youthful nine month old puppers. Very friendly and gets along with our family and Lex which is great. Having this puppy here has made us be more energetic and mobile. We are going for more walks and playing around more. But we did the same thing my sister did. We were complacent about following the rules of a new dog.

One night, our son let both dogs out into our backyard. Our dog Lex returned. But our visitor did not. With a fenced acre and lots of trees, we searched the backyard nonchalantly thinking that he must be there. No such luck. Turns out he ran into the neighbor’s yard. So our kids went to get him.

Puppies don’t listen very well. This puppers was no exception. He kept running further and further off whenever we got close. Not only did our kids try and catch him, but three more neighborhood kids got in on the excitement. This puppy was chased through about twenty acres of open farm lands.

Only to return to our backdoor.

Now I kind of know how my sister felt. Even though I wasn’t overly scared that we’d never see him again- there was that small negative part of me that wondered how I would tell my buddy that his godson lost his dog. Luckily I didn’t have to. Maybe he will read this when he returns from his vacation. Until then, the puppy has found a happy place in our house and has made himself quite at home. I don’t think our son will let him out of his sights again.

Somewhere in all this is a good lesson to learn. I don’t quite know what it is, but my son’s guilt was punishment enough. Looking back, we also saved a dog in Odaiba, Japan and returned him to his owner. People and pets have a bond that you can’t refute.

From One Fan To Another

Hey person who owns that white car with the “Empire” logo. I like your style. Even though yours is on a Mazda, that’s totally cool! I wish I could’ve had a “geek moment” with you standing in the parking lot. Maybe one day we will meet each other. But I doubt it. All I have is this photo.

You see, I saw your car and parked next to it. Just so I could get this photo. I went shopping and when I left the store- your car was still there. Exactly like a Storm Trooper, you missed it. A fleeting moment that my Instagram followers got to enjoy along with me.