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"I should get an electric heater but my electric bill is already too high. The propane is okay, you just need to make sure it leaves some oxygen for human consumption. I don't use my brain much anymore, so I don't need much to survive." -Gavin when I asked him why he was using a propane heater inside his house.


Friday, 2-20-15: Slowly coming out of the mid-winter funk.
This month has been ridiculously cold and snowy. So far we're on track for this to be the coldest February since records were kept. That's probably over 100 years of data. What a bunch of crap! Then, to top off the shit sandwich, I had a furnace puke all over itself and a sewer line do the same. Bye bye $500 for those combined repairs. Gods damn it. Oh, if the cold wasn't enough we've gotten tons of snow as well.

Even though this month has been one giant toilet bowl things are looking up. The days are getting longer and eventually the weather will have no choice but to improve. The weeks left before the wedding are dwindling, and I've gotten back into the gym after taking nearly two weeks off. (Twooooo weeeeeks... Total Recall reference!) I finally managed to finish the walls for my bootleg cellar gym expansion, and as of now it looks like this:

Not too shabby. The mirror give the illusion of more size. I still have to install a suspended ceiling and a door in that corner, but for now it's good enough. The elliptical is a nice addition to the gym, but I've only used the thing a handful of times since I bought it. $150 well-spent, eh? Maybe eventually I will get my money's worth out of it. I might actually rearrange the gym, but I haven't decided yet how it should look. Maybe I will just leave it the way it is. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

Thursday, 2-19-15: My favorite NES games.
Tommy and I were having beers at Jester's as Kat hosted her usual karaoke show a few nights ago, and the topic of discussion turned to the original NES gaming console. Nintendo was boss back when I was a kid; I think we got our NES on Christmas day of 1986. Since then I've always had a love for Nintendo, especially for both the NES and the SNES. Over 800 games were made for the original NES. OMG!

They just don't make video games like they used to. Video game technology passed my aging ass by in the early 2000s, if not sooner. The Nintendo 64 was the beginning of the end for me. Now everyone seems to have either an Xbox or a PlayStation. Both?! I don't have a clue how to use either of those consoles. I don't want to learn how to use them either. I don't even care... if I care. The new video game consoles are a bunch of crap!


So Tommy and I started thinking about the question "If you could only have five NES games to take with you, say stranded on a deserted island-type scenario (with a TV, a console, controllers, and a 110V outlet. Hehehe.) what five games would you choose?" Tough question! A fun question. We were both able to list a couple in an instant. Metroid and Super Mario Bros. III were no-brainers. Then we started listing off some other fun games, and since then I've thought about it a little more and come up with my final list:

5. Legend of Zelda - (Aug 22, 1987) I tried to play this game a few years ago, and it kicked my ass. Bad. I found level 1, but I was wandering around getting my ass handed to me by bad guys in a vain effort to find level 2. What a bunch of crap! Pathetic that I couldn't even find level 2. When I was a kid I did beat this game, but I think it took a long time. This is a fantastic game with a catchy theme song to boot.

4. Blaster Mater - (Nov 1, 1988) This game is nearly impossible to beat unless you cheat some. A couple of the enemy bosses will turn you into a smear in no time at all unless you pause the game while you've scored a hit. Keep it on pause until the bastard dies, move on. The side-scrolling levels and the great music alone make this a must-play. Plus you can get out of your vehicle! The top-scrolling levels where you play outside the vehicle aren't as good as the side-scrolling parts, but I give that a pass due to the limited graphics capabilities of the era. I love the title music. Most of my favorite games have great music.

3. Super Mario Brothers III - (Feb 12, 1990) With all due respect to the original and fantastic SMB and SMBII games, SMBIII is the best by far. A frog suit for the water levels. Ability to fly with the raccoon tail (makes no sense but still awesome), and the Tonooki suit that lets you become a stone. Being able to bounce back and forth with the level-overview screen. A level where you can ride in a shoe?! This game has it all and then some. I suppose the only flaw with SMBIII is the fact that it's not too hard to beat. However, I played it a few years ago and died 100000 times so maybe it's just right. There are ample chances to score 1-ups throughout the game. You're guaranteed to get a free life just for completing a level!

2. Legacy of the Wizard - (April 1, 1989) I fucking love this game. The only reason I didn't rank it higher than Metroid is the fact that the game is a tad too hard. I can't beat it unless I cheat. What a bunch of crap! The fact that you can play as different members of the family is fantastic. Wanna be the dog? No prob! Different family members have different skill sets, and only certain family members can access certain areas. I played this game A TON and still hadn't even come close to beating it when I was a kid. We would laugh at the "butt cheeks" bread power-ups, and to this very day I still think the main screen music is the best video game music, ever. It's been the ring tone on my phone for years now. Hahaha!

^Epic butt-cheek-looking "bread" health power-up. Hehehehe.

I still have yet to beat the final of the four enemy bosses that guards the last crown. Once you get four crowns you can activate the dragon-slayer sword and kill the final dragon-boss. I beat the game using a cheat code so it really doesn't count. I just don't have the patience to go through the entire level just to face the last crown-boss and die in under a minute. What a bunch of crap!

1. Metroid - (Aug 1, 1986) Not only one of the best NES games ever, but also one of the best video games in the history of the world. Great concept, unique-looking levels, a perfect mix of eerie and inviting. Hidden treasures in walls and ceilings, check. Areas you need to return to later in the game to access, check. Badass-looking enemy bosses, check. The final boss, the Mother Brain, is a fantastic final battle. Then you beat the brain and guess what? You're not done yet! You have a limited time to escape before things get blown to hell. As an added bonus, if you play the game like a pro then you get the big reveal at the end. Samus is a chick. Awesome!

^It's a chick hiding out under that 8-bit, pixelated mask. Mind = blown!

Metriod was really ahead of its time. It took the processing power of the NES to its limit. Sometimes the screen would randomly change color, and things would bog down when too many enemies appeared on screen. My only complaint, although a very minor one, is the fact that there are a couple spots in the game you can become stuck and pwned.

It's hard to choose just 5 games. I'd want to take 100! There are so many awesome NES games to be played. Sure, some of them are steaming piles of monkey crap (cough:Barbie:cough) Actually, the majority of them are steaming piles of monkey crap. However, when you have over 800 games to choose from you know there will be more than a few duds.

I regrettably had to leave great games off the list, and if I could make a top ten I would have included Bases Loaded, Mega Man II, Adventures of Lolo, Bomberman, and Dr. Mario. Even then I have to leave some greats off. There's just not enough room, damnit! Writing this list makes me want to go play video games right now. However, I'm stuck at work with no clients so I guess I will just start thinking about my top 5 SNES games instead. Maybe I could stroll down to electronics and see if they have a cool video game on display, but nevermind because if they did it would be some modern-day pile of trash.

I'm just writing this as a draft in my email so I can copy it and paste it onto my bootleg site later. What a bunch of crap!

Okay, I just added some photos, polished up the turd a bit, and voila. It's 1100 on Thursday morning, and I wrote the above NES love-letter a couple days ago when I had no clients. JH was really busy at the very end of Jan and into the beginning of this month, but since then things have slowed down some and there are times when it's boring. Hopefully it picks back up. 8 weeks left until the job ends! I do like working for JH, and the pay is better than it was at Liberty Tax.

I need to go hit the gym, eat lunch, and take care of some things. I had a nasty sewwer backup at one of my bootleg properties yesterday so today I gotta go take a look at the aftermath. The main sewer line was plugged up so sewer-water was spilling into the basement some. What a bunch of crap! (Literally.) I had to have emergency plumbing work done. Bye bye $343 for that. Turns out there were some roots sticking into the line so they had to cut them out. Thankfully the entire line itself didn't collapse cause I can't afford some major sewer repair. The basement is a bootleg piece of shit that the tenants never use, but I should at least mix some bleach with water and make some effort to disinfect any potentially contaminated areas.

Friday, 2-13-15: My hate-letter to Bangor Gas and other things.
I gotta pay this gods damned $3509 gas bill here on the desk. I should write them a check and put it in the mail tonight. However, my business account that I use to pay this bill with only has $1400 in it so I guess I will have to rob money from somewhere else. Good thing I have some deposits that I can make, and even better I have a FedEx 401k that I can mooch from. I will have to pay a tax penalty for the early withdrawal, but not until next year so I say no prob!

It's funny I even have a FedEx 401k. For the first few years when I worked for them as a part-time "outbound" supervisor they tried to send me junk and get me to sign up. However, I was younger and dumber so I always hauled on that crap. I didn't need no stinkin' 401k because I was a slumlord! Then, at some point during my 7+ years there as a supervisor, I somehow got signed up for the thing. I actually didn't even know I had it for a few years. What a bunch of crap! Hahahahaha. I never signed up for it, but I think they changed the policy so if you didn't opt out you just got it by default. Now I'm glad I have it because I can cash it in and use it to pay bills and stuff. Nice! I used to be a lot dumber, but didn't we all?

So I'm gonna pay this outrageous gas bill because I pay my damned bills, but I'm also going to send along a hate-letter to accompany the enclosed check. Fuck them for price gouging their customers. The fuckin' DINKS. Here is the letter that I will be enclosing along with my payment:

Dear sir or ma’am

Congratulations on successfully price-gouging your customers. I see your price per therm doubles in the winter when the therms are needed, and in the summer when they are not the price drops again. I understand market economics and supply/demand factors into the equation, but I would like to see you explain this chart:

The market price drops yet your price continues to increase. I find that totally unacceptable. Furthermore, I also do not appreciate your monthly basic “customer charge.” You must make enough profit from price-gouging on the per-therm cost as well as the other ridiculous “transportation charge” and the even more ludicrous “Past gas cost adjustment.” You are charging more for past gas yet in the past the cost you charge me per therm was lower? It is hard to put into words how much your company frustrates me with these bogus charges.

Finally, you need to update that little “Compare heating fuel costs” chart at the top right corner of your bills because your cost is only marginally better than oil and propane now. In fact, oil is probably cheaper.

In conclusion, I am only doing business with you because I cannot afford to convert my furnaces back to oil. Congratulations. I hope you are enjoying your profits while I scratch and claw in order to keep my business afloat every winter.

I swear to the gods who do not really exist that I just printed that letter as posted above, and it is going in the envelope with my payment. F them! I hope they don't spite-raise my price now. That would suck!

I am drinking a Bud Light Lime-A-Rita. 8% alchohol, beotches! I won't drink too much tonight, but a couple brews will surely hit the spot. Kat is down at Jester's for her usual Friday night show, and I came over to my office for a bit to take care of some stuff. I don't come to my bootleg office that much anymore because I'd rather be home with my soon-to-be wife. Since both her and I work all frigging day tomorrow we can't do a proper Valentine's Day together so we had a nice lunch today (we both had the day off from JH.) I bought her roses yesterday, and I should give her more stuff tomorrow. I used to not give a shit about Valentine's Day, but now I hate it a little less because I'm all in love.

I just talked to Mom on the phone. She's gonna pay for a plane ticket for Doug to come back for the wedding. She asked if he can bivouac at the house, and I have no problem with that. However, I gotta run it by Kat and make sure she says okay. He'd be back for a few days before flying back to Tucson after the wedding. He was staying with a friend out in AZ, but he just got a 4br house to rent with some friends. Tommy is going out there, too. They already have one of the bedrooms reserved for him. He's leaving around the end of this month.

Tommy was gonna be the best man at the wedding, but he's out like a fat kid in dodge ball because he will be 3000 miles away on April 19th. So now I guess I will need a new best man for my wedding. I do have options so I'm not worried about it, but I guess I should figure something out pretty soon. I'm sure I could get Gavin or Walt to do it, but maybe if Doug comes back he can just do it. I know that's what Mom wants, and maybe that's what he wants as well. However, what Kat and I want is priority #1 since it's our wedding.

Oh, check this out:

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHA! WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP! OMG. Another HUGE blizzard is in the forecast for tomorrow night into Sunday. BLIZZARD WARNING posted from tomorrow at 2200 until Monday 0700. This winter is fucked. Tonight will be -15, too. Bye bye precious... precious money. It gets spent on heat and snow removal.

This winter has been really depressing. Thankfully I have Kat in my life to help keep me sane. Her daughter, Katherine, is fun as well. I threw a granola bar at Katherine a couple nights ago, but it was out of love and not because I really wanted to cause harm. I didn't even waste food because the granola bar was still perfectly edible. I'm lucky to have both of them around because if I didn't then I'd just get really drunk. A lot. Getting really drunk with nothing really worth living for this time of year is unwise, especially when it would be so easy to go out into the tundra and just become a 150-lb piece of ice...

I have given serious thought lately to finding a way to leave Maine for winters. Hopefully in a couple years that possibility will become a reality and we can escape to a warmer climate during these most brutal months. I haven't felt that great this week so that adds to the frustration of all this cold weather. I'm not 100% sick, but I'm worn out, fighting a cold, sniffling some with a cough, and just a bit run down. Kat hasn't been feeling well ever since Christmas so that worries me, too. The gym? Forget it. I haven't used my gym in about two weeks. I did get on the elliptical for almost three minutes last Saturday AM, but then I keep seeing this out of the corner of my eye so I got frustrated and quit:

What a bunch of crap! The furnace here decided to puke all over itself. Emergency weekend rate, check. Extra repair bill, check. Thankfully I saw it failing or else maybe that could have kept leaking for days and then the moisture could have ruined the entire furnace. I definitely do NOT have an extra $4000 kicking around for a new furnace this winter.

I played racquetball today and sucked. Bad. I can't even count it as exercise, but oh well it happens. Maybe by next week I can start to bounce back and get my ass into the gym again. Hopefully. The JH job has been keeping me very busy so I don't have tons of extra time. I should write about that next time.

Kat and I got to Jester's just a bit before 2000 tonight, around our usual time, to start setting up for her karaoke show. We rolled into the North Brewer Shopping Plaza to see two cop cars and a bleeding old guy sitting on the bench outside Jester's. The guy had blood coming out of his skull. Oh, his pants were also pulled down to his ankles. Oh, it was about 2 degrees with a harsh wind blowing. Epic fail! Soon thereafter an ambulance and fire truck rolled in. Not sure why a fire truck was needed, but they seem to appear at every police scene. I guess the guy got shit-show drunk, fell down, hit his head, and started bleeding. A lot. What a bunch of crap! Only at Jester's... those bartenders really need to get training on when to cut off someone who is too drunk.

I'm out of here. Gotta pay a couple bills then head to Jester's. I'll make sure I don't get so drunk that I fall down with my britches around my anlkes. Hehehehe. Goonies never say die!

PS: 80s music rocks!

Friday, 2-06-15: Fuck this. Seriously.
I'm fighting the urge to mentally check out for a while, and I have been for about the past week or two. Things aren't going to good lately. This town is a frozen wasteland that is buried in snow, Kat and I are both overworked, Kat hasn't been able to stay 100% healthy, and we can't finish moving the rest of her and Katherine's stuff over to the house. It's been one "fuck you" after another lately, and I'm sick of it.

Three things really have me stressed out a lot. First, Kat has to work at the Bangor JH kiosk. That would be just fine, but the kiosk is really close to the entrance so the doors open and close about 100000 times a day. Since we're in the middle of the most brutal winter I've ever seen in my life, every day she works over there she has to battle with the cold air that pours in when the doors open and close. That makes it impossible for her to stay healthy, and this time of year is already hard for her because of her lupus. Then, on top of all the hours she works at JH, she has to host karaoke at Jester's every Friday and now Saturday. There just isn't any down time, and it's a bunch of crap.

The second thing that sucks really hard is the fact that Tommy had to stay extra at our house due to extrenuating circumstances in his life. Of course we want to help him out as much as we can, but his staying meant we couldn't finish moving all of Kat and Katherine's stuff from her house in Bangor over to our place here in Brewer. If we could have finished the move before we started working at JH in early January that would have been perfect. The weather was ok then, too. No snow on the ground for a while in late Dec. and early Jan. Our plan was to finish the move then, but we couldn't do it so now we are fucked. Tommy plans to hit the road later this month, but Kat's house in Bangor is literally buried. I've never seen so much snow on the ground in my life. I had to spend almost an hour over there yesterday morning (before my 10-hour work shift at JH) shovelling off a flat part of the roof and access to her front door. Thankfully all the weight of the snow didn't cause the roof to collapse or leak. The rest of her stuff over there looks ok for now. It's just gonna be really hard to move the rest of it with so much snow everywhere.

The final thing that has me stressed out is the weather. I can't believe how fucked it is. I always complain about the winters, but this one has been un-fucking-believable. I think the governor should seriously consider declaring a state of emergency so we can get some National Guard help with the snow removal. According to the news that I saw this morning we've gotten the following snowfall in the past two weeks:

49.9" OF SNOW SINCE JAN 24TH = WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP! This area is totally pwned. We've already exceeded our annual entire winter average by a lot. My driveway is fucked. The storm we got on Monday gave us a foot of snow, and the actual air temperature was BELOW ZERO for the entire day. I've never seen a blizzard with the actual air temperature that low before. I've had the truck in 4WD for days on end because the roads are still snow-covered. I have plowing bills and heating bills on the desk that remain unopened, and I think once I open them I will have to cash in some of my 401k money because there is no way I can pay for a wedding, the usual other bills, and the extreme cost of this winter with just my rental and JH income. It is not possible. I would be pwned if I didn't have that sweet 401k that I can rob!

I definitely should have left some more "oh shit" money in the bank. Oh well, it was worth living a little on the edge so I could have a fun summer and fall last year. No financial regrets!

Guy opens his bills now. First is the plow bill... $1080 for January! The Feb. 2 and 5 storms will be on my next bill, and more snow may be coming Sunday-Monday so hello more pwnage. Oh, the extended forecast is this, too:

FUCK, FUCK, FUCK, FUCK, FUCK, FUCK. I didn't include the next 3 days in that .jpg because it doesn't fit onto the page, but it's 3 right now with a forecast high of 12 and the weekend is also looking gods damned cold. Gods damn it!


I should be brave and open up these natural gas bills. I'm sure they put the fucks right to me as usual... $509.76, $286.17, $551.15, $597.61, $626.87, and $938.31. OMG! The "cheap" $286 one is for my house, and the others are for the bootleg rental properties. That is fucked. FUCKED. I should sell everything and get the fuck out of this fucking state. Maine is pretty great in the summer, but this time of year can kiss my hairy ass. If I had to live like this for the rest of my life I would buy a handle of rum, drink it all, and pass out in a snowbank and never wake up.

Spring can't come fast enough.

$3509.87 in heating bills for last month. WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP! It's been cold so I definitely don't expect an easy ride with the heating bills, but the gas company is totally fucking all of their customers. When the price per therm is 57 cents in the summer and $1.30 in the winter then you know something ain't right, especially when the price per therm chart on CNBC shows a roughly flat line and/or a decrease in the price per therm over the past year. I should send them a letter when I pay my bill that says "I'm not paying you all of this because you are a bunch of price-gouging, mooching, pinko pricks." I've always paid every gas bill every month in its entirety, but they don't deserve it and I am thinking of paying just the minimum for a while just to make a point. Those fucking DINKS.

This update has been a giant, negative, shit-show. It is worth mentioning the Superbowl results from last Sunday so I can have something positive to say. The GREATRIOTS beat the Seattle Seahawks in a very exciting game. It's Brady's 4th Superbowl ring, and God Brady also won the MVP. AWESOME! The Pats were down by 10 points late in the game, but they came back, took a late lead, and miraculously stopped the Seahawks from scoring what would have been a game-winning touchdown in the final seconds. Great game, better outcome!

In conclusion, everything sucks in life right now and I am seriously formulating a tentative game plan for putting this state in my rear-view. It doesn't make sense for Kat and I to live here for many more winters, especially considering the toll winters take on her health up here. Maybe I will haul on all the bootleg apartments and use the equity to start a new life in a warmer place....

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