9-04 10-04 11-04 12-04 1-05 2-05 3-05 4-05 5-05 6-05 7-05 8-05 9-05 10-05 11-05 12-05 1-06 2-06 3-06
4-06 5-06 6-06 7-06 8-06 9-06 10-06 11-06 12-06 1-07 2/07 3-07 4-07 5-07 6-07 7-07 8-07 9-07 10-07 11-07 12-07 1-08 2-08 3-08 4-08 5-08 6-08 7-08 8-08 9-08 10-08 11-08 12-08 1-09 2-09 3-09 4-09 5-09 6-09 7-09 8-09 9-09 10-09 11-09 12-09 1-10 2-10
3-10 4-10 5-10 6-10 7-10 8-10 9-10 10-10 11-10 12-10 1-11 2-11 3-11 4-11 5-11 6-11 7-11 8-11 9-11 10-11 11-11 12-11 1-12 2-12 3-12 4-12 5-12 6-12 7-12 8-12 9-12 10-12 11-12 12-12 1-13 2-13 3-13 4-13 5-13 6-13 7-13 8-13 9-13 10-13 11-13 12-13

"Girls, Girls, Girls. Red lips, finger tips... I'm such a good boy, I just need a new toy..." -8-year old Dylan singing Motley Crue's Girls, Girls, Girls to himself as he built a Lego helicopter.


Friday, 1-31-14: Bye bye January.
In a matter of hours the second-worst month of the year will be nothing but a bootleg memory. Fuck January! I hate January because it's cold and there's not much to do besides watch TV, work, and complain. Of course it could be worse, it could always be December. December is definitely the dirt-worst month of the year. In December not only is it cold but it's also the month with the least amount of daylight. Sunset is before 1600 for THE ENTIRE MONTH OF DECEMBER. OMG WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP!

December totally blows because you know January is next in line. Plus you gotta gear up for Christmas in December. Fuck that lame holiday! Thankfully by the time January rolls around Xmas is a fading (bad) memory. The days do start getting longer in January and by the end of the month (today!) the average high temp has risen one degree, all the way up to 28. Sunset is 1640 today so we've gained a respectable amount of daylight since the winter solstice back in Dink-cember.

^I should use this as my 2014 Xmas card! (Found in the archives of this bootleg site.)

February is no great month so it's not like I'm about to flip a switch of epic excitement. February fucking sucks, too. Starting tomorrow we will officially be in the third-worst month of the year. Thankfully February only has 28 days this year. Unfortunately, every 4th year it has 29 days. What a bunch of crap that is! I understand why we need a bonus day every four years and I have no problem with that at all, but all I wanna know is why? Why didn't we throw the bonus day onto June, July, or August? Why the hell does Feb. only have 28 days in the first place? Wouldn't it make more sense to shit-can the 31st day out of the crap months of Dec and Jan so all three have 30 days? Gods damn it! What pinko prick invented this calendar anyway?

The worst part of February, besides the continued cold weather and snow, is definitely Valentine's Day. I hate that fucking holiday! February 14th can kiss my hairy ass. In just over two weeks I'll be expected to buy something for my chick. She already told me what she wants, too. It's some $195 workout video series-thing on Amazon. It's a great deal because there's free shipping! [sarcasm] OMG I AIN'T PAYING ALMOST TWO BENJIS FOR A VIDEO OF SOME STUPID LAME WORKOUT RICHARD-SIMMONS WANNABE WHEN I HAVE A PERFECTLY BADASS OPYMPIC-QUALITY GYM RIGHT HERE OUTSIDE MY BOOTLEG OFFICE DOOR. HEY BABE, YOU WANNA GET JACKED HOW ABOUT YOU COME USE MY CELLAR GYM?

I told Kelly last night that I ain't paying $200 for any Valentine's Day gift. I said "How about flowers and candy?" and she did not look impressed. Then I told her about how my wallet is a siv lately. I gots a fucking $2819 natural gas bill on the pile here from the last 30 days of heating, I just had to dump over $300 to register the truck (should 'a done dat last Nov. Epic fail there!), I gots a $453 car payment due FOR HER CAR in about a week, etc. Call me a cheapskate, call me a bastard, call me whatever you want but I ain't paying $200 for any gift this month. My bootleg rental property business has made close to ZERO profit over the past couple months thanks to steep heating costs, etc. and the UPS money isn't gonna take me to the promised land anytime soon.

Oh, plus one week ago I got canceled from a job that I expected to have working at Liberty Tax. I made $7300 at Liberty Tax last year over 13-ish weeks so losing that income definitely hurts the balance sheet. I'm not really pissed about getting kicked off the Liberty Tax island because that place had turned into a bootleg yarn shop and I'm sure she will go out of business soon, but it still throws a major wrench into the plans. I wouldn't have made any $7300 working at Liberty this year, that's for sure. I would have gotten fewer hours and maybe made half that. I would have had to take a pay cut, too. What a bunch of crap!

Maybe I'll get a job doing taxes somewhere else, but if not then at least I can hang out and take 2-hour lunch breaks every day and update this bootleg site!

It's officially my weekend and I don't have any real plans. What will I do? I guess I can exercise, read books, watch TV, drink some beer, and relax. The Superbowl is Sunday and I'll definitely watch the game, but I don't have any excitement in advance of the event. I'll root for Peyton Manning's Broncos to lose to the Seattle Seahawks and a couple or a dozen beers will go into my gullet. Then I'll sleep for a few hours and wake up at 0245 so I can go to work at UPS. What a bunch of crap!

Thursday, 1-30-14: I shouldn't 'a forgotten that.
This morning I was ripping out 80s tunes (still use a CD player in the badass F150.) and almost all the way to work when a police cruiser pulled up behind me. I hate it when that happens! The speed limit was 25, but I kept it around 30MPH because no one actually goes 25 in a 25 zone, not even the cops. I always go a few over the speed limit even if a cop is following my ass because I figure they have somewhere to be as well and it sucks to only go the speed limit. If I was a cop and someone was "only" going the speed limit then I'd find a reason to pull that individual over just out of spite!

I went a good 1/2 mile with the cop on my six and I was so close to the UPS warehouse that I could literally look across a field and see the place. I was just about to put my right-turn blinker on and head off the main road when I saw the piggie put his flashers on. Gods damn it! I pulled off hoping he would blow on by, but that was not to be my good fortue. Nope, I was busted. He asked if I knew why he pulled me over and I seriously had no idea. I told him I didn't think I was speeding too much. Turns out my registration had expired back in October, 2013. Oops. My bad!

I actually thought I had re-registered the F150 last fall so I was digging through my glove box in a vain attempt to find something. I did find a valid 2014 registration, but that was only for my little utility trailer. What a bunch of crap! Then, to make matters worse, when he asked to see my insurance card all I had was the one that expired Nov. 18, 2013. MY BAD. I actually did pay my insurance bill and I think they emailed me a new card; I was just too stupid to print it off and put it in the truck. Epic fail!

So there I sat, just a few hundred yards from UPS, and I had to text my boss that I was getting busted. Fortunately the cop was a good guy and he didn't fuck me over. He gave me a warning and an envelope so now I have 20 days to mail out proof that I do have insurance.

I'm a total nincompoop for totally forgetting to register the truck. I deserve a fine for being dumb. However, I don't really deserve a fine because the fact that I even need to pay a few hundred to register the thing every year is a bunch of crap. It cost me $680 to register it back in 2011 when it was still shiny-new. Now it's 3.5 years old so I guess it will be closer to half that price. Still goddamn expensive, though. What a bunch of crap!

Okay, I just took a 2-hour lunch break and during that time I looked for my updated insurance card. Where is it? I know not. I have my old-ass expired one on my computer as a pdf file, but I cannot find the new one anywhere. What a bunch of crap! I think it's at home; when I added the Mazda (the car that I pay for and never drive) I got new insurance cards in the mail and I brought all that crap home. Hopefully I can find it tonight and get the damn truck registered tomorrow. I hope no oinkers bust my arse between now and then.

I guess I should study more tax crap. I still have access to the Liberty Tax system so I'll just mooch that for as long as possible. I'll learn, I'll get smarter, and then hopefully someone will hire my ass. The end.

Wednesday, 1-29-14: The south will rise again... not!
Gotta love the south. Yesterday afternoon a mere 2" of snow fell in Atlanta, and now the top story in the news is their epic failure. Check this out (from CNN:)

"Snow fell in Atlanta on Tuesday, leaving a couple of inches on the region -- an event that would be a minor inconvenience for communities in the Northern climes. But the white stuff and the icy streets it spawned stirred a panicky community-wide exodus toward home. As night fell, the city's busy interstates became parking lots. It left homebound folks stranded in their cars and anxious kids sheltering in their schools overnight."

AAAAAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHA! OMG 2" OF SNOW CRIPPLED THE ENTIRE METROPOLIS. HAHAHAHA! WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP! People ditched their cars right on the highway and walked home. People had to spend the night in convenience stores, schools, restaurants, etc. Hahahahaha! We got 1.5" of snow here on Saturday PM/night and I was calling my plow guy Sunday AM asking him why he even bothered to plow my driveways. He said he wouldn't charge me for that so it's a good thing I called. Normally he plows if there's 2" or more, but he said he wanted to get it out of the way since another 1-3" was forecast for early Monday AM. We ended up getting no snow Monday so that worked out well for me! (Did get rain that hard froze Monday night so I gotta pay for a sanding from yesterday. Ah well, it's cheaper than paying for snowplowing.)

^Epic Atlanta traffic fail.

I wonder if my ex-girlfriend who lives down there had to sleep in her car? I hope she did, that beooooooooottttttttttttccccccccccccccchhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! I haven't talked to her ass since 2010, since I put that town in my rear-view, so maybe she died or something. As far as she goes, I don't even care... if I care.

I guess the south won't be rising again, not if they can't handle 2" of snow. I am jealous of the south this time of year because it's usually warmer down there than it is up here, though. One day I need a summer home down south somewhere so I can pull chocks and be a "snow bird." Screw being up here every winter from now until I die! I need a nice little condo on the beach in FL or something. I'll stick around up here for the spring, summer, and fall.

I dropped off three cover letters and resumes to different CPA and tax places this morning. Maybe one of them will hire my ass? I dunno, we'll see what happens. I just barged in and shouted at the top of my lungs "MY NAME IS STEVE, BUT MY FAKE INTERNET NAME IS RAMBO AND THEREFORE I DEMAND THAT YOU HIRE ME AT ONCE. I DO GOOD WORK AND I'M AS COOL AS THE OTHER SIDE OF THE PILLOW. WHEN DO I START?"

^Mental image of my ass barging through a wall at every local tax firm like the Kool-Aid man used to do back in the 80s, but instead of Kool-Aid I'd have some 1040 tax forms and a bandanna.

For now I'll just keep studying some tax stuff so I can help out my friends if needed and so I can do a good job on my own complex taxes. Kelly's will be complex, too. Full price at Liberty Tax for both mine and her taxes would be $800 or so. F that! When I worked there I could do them for free, but now that my arse is FIRED I don't think I'll be able to stroll in, hop behind a desk, and start working on my own taxes. Instead I'll probably just download the forms from the IRS, fill them out manually, and mail them in or something. Maybe I'll get a job somewhere else soon and I can just do them there...

I guess I should get my swell on in the gym and then go home and hop on the treadmill. Since I don't have a tax job I do have extra time to get more exercise. I need to be strong because smashing through brick walls is hard work, damnit!

Monday, 1-27-14: More about my quest for a tax job.
Let's listen to some hair metal today, Kix Don't Close Your Eyes will start things off. Great tune! I usually whore myself between 80s hair rock and 80s pop rock. The 80s rule and girls drool!

Since I got unceremoniously booted off the Liberty Tax team last Friday I have extra time. I kinda like it! I was supposed to go to work there this morning at 0900 for a few hours, but now I can screw off instead. I have enough money, but I want more so I am hopeful that some kind of tax job pops up. I looked up a few local accounting/tax prep places and found a couple that might work for me so I have cover letters and resumes on the desk here for those ones. I'll drop a couple of them off later today or tomorrow and see what happens. None of these places are hiring that I know of so it might be a dead-end, but there's no harm in getting my name out there. Right?

I decided that I'm not gonna even apply to work at H&R Cock. Fuck them! I ditched their loser asses years ago because they charge too damn much. I was in there for literally about an hour back in 2009 or 2010 and my total price was $441. OMG! I probably wrote about that in the archives of this bootleg site. Lemme look and see if I did write about that...

Found it! From Wednesday, 3-11-09:

"I got my taxes done on Monday morning. The end result of that mission is hilarious! My taxable income from last year was $124. AAAAAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! ACCORDING TO MY TAX RETURN I AM OFFICIALLY A PAUPER. WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP! Holy crispy crap, $124?! It actually should have been negative 28 dollars, too. I had a $152 interest penalty because I cashed in a CD a few months early. However, the form needed to file that loss was something like 10 bucks so we eliminated it since it didn't affect my refund. I'm getting everything back that I paid in federal and state taxes last year. EVERY PENNY. That's over $2000. Nice! Fucking H&R Block. They wanted $464 to do my taxes and I told them they are fucked in the head so they gave me a better price. They have set prices for every form and I needed almost all of the forms. What a bunch of crap! I think next year I'll get my taxes done somewhere else because paying 400 bucks to get my taxes done is not fucking cool. Good thing I'm getting money back or else it would royally suck!"

So it was $464, not $441. Those pig-fuckers! In hindsight having my income only be $124 in 2009 was a bunch of crap, too. I should have carried some of it over to the following year in terms of my bootleg rental property write-offs. There should have been more depreciation, etc. Back then I didn't have a clue but now I'm five years older and slightly wiser. H&R Block can kiss my hairy ass!

^Evil tax empire.*

So not only am I not going to apply at H&R Cock but I am also not going to try to strike out on my own and do some "under the table" work. I need to apply for an EFIN (Efiler ID Number) from the IRS if I do over 10 tax returns and getting one of those can take a while. They require efiling for most preparers these days. I could just do a couple and mail them in, but who the hell wants to do that?! Maybe I could just help people use some online tax program and charge a few extra bucks for my genuis. That's basically like "You're doing it yourself but I'll make sure it's mostly correct." Kinda like how it will be when I do my own and Kelly's taxes!

Maybe next year I'll try to do taxes on my own. Meanwhile, I still have a lot to learn so I should study more. I'll see if I still have an active Liberty Tax username and password so I can take their level 3 tax preparer test. Passing the test won't get me jack fucking shit, but it's a good way to brush up on the material. I'll actually most likely fail that test, but at least I can see the answers and learn from it. Level 3 is pretty damn hard. Maybe I've already been deleted so it won't matter. I'll look into that later.

I'm out of here. I should go find a part-time tax job now, drop off my Liberty Tax keys, and run a couple errands. Goonies never say die!

*I'd totally work there if I could make a lot of money. What a hypocritical bunch of crap!

Saturday, 1-25-14: Three options?
Since the owner of Liberty Tax called me to fire my ass yesterday, just over 24 hours ago in fact, I've been bouncing different scenarios around in my head. Does it suck to get fired? Fuck yeah it does! Is it a bunch of crap? Fuck yeah it is. Am I gonna cry about it? FUCK NO I'M NOT! I didn't technically got fired, but using the term YOU'RE FIRED is more entertaining than saying I was "permanently laid off."

So I'm a licensed tax preparer without a home. I spent $63 for my IRS PTIN (Acronym that I already forgot the meaning of. Preparer Tax Identification Number is my best guess.) so I can actually do taxes, but not having a desk to do them at is a problem. Especially when the problem presents itself just a few days before the official start of the tax season. What a bunch of crap! The IRS doesn't start accepting tax returns until the 31st, but already companies are starting to meet with customers, to get their stuff ready to go in advance. What am I doing during all of this? I'm sitting in my bootleg office updating this bootleg site. Awesome!

Til Tuesday, Voices Carry. Great tune that I haven't heard in a few days. Years ago I used to think Cyndi Lauper sang this song. Fail!

So I have three options on my proverbial table right now. First, I can say "fuck it!" and not do taxes at all this year (except for Kelly and my own of course.) I can just take it easy this winter, watch more TV, play more video games, and use the gym more than I would if I was working 60-70ish hours a week with a tax preparer job, the bootleg rental business, and UPS all added together. Only working my 27.5 hours a week at UPS plus a few here and there for the apartment business is actually quite appealing to me. The first option has a lot of benefits, but the obvious drawback is I'll have less money in my bank account come April.

My second option is to apply for a tax preparer job at some other place. I already looked through all the job listings and I didn't see much, but I could slut around to various places and drop off resumes. I'm sure I could find something at H&R Cock or Jackson Jewitt, one of those box-style tax places that are around town. or maybe a local, "Mom and Pop" style tax place would want to hire me? I'm not too fired up about even the remote possibility of working for a big tax franchise because they charge so damn much, but if customers come in the door and are willing to pay then do I really give a crispy crap? Generally that's an obvious HELL NO, but I don't want to rip off my friends and I'm not sure how generous I could be at a place like H&R Cock or Jackson Jewitt. At Liberty Tax I was allowed to drop the price quite a bit for my friends and family.

^If they're hiring I might check it out, but maybe not because they charge too damn much.

My third option is to just do some taxes all on my own, kinda on the side and on a very small scale. I did some searching and found software that would let me prepare taxes for others. There are a LOT of options for tax preparers ranging from a couple hundred to thousands of dollars, but on a very small scale I think a couple hundred would set me up to get the job done. I wouldn't be doing any super-complex returns, noting with corporate or estate taxes, but I'd be in great shape for individual taxes including rentals, self-employment, etc.

The third option of just doing things on my own is the most appealing of the three, but I don't have a real office to meet people at so that is a huge drawback. No way I'd have customers get their taxes done in this bootleg cellar office here. F that! I could do it for a couple close friends, but most people would walk into this office and say "WTF is this bootleg shit. I'm going over to the other bootleg tax place where the owner also sells yarn!"

Not exactly customer-friendly. Not to mention this is a residential neighborhood with limited parking, etc. Lovely lime-green chair!

I could do maybe a dozen tax returns without a "real" office becaue I know enough people who could just drop their stuff off or who wouldn't mind hanging out in this bootleg office. However, that's not a huge amount of income if I just do a dozen or so tax returns (especially when two of them are my own and Kelly's) so it might not even be worth the effort. At least if I did do that I could charge a lot less than what I had to charge at Liberty Tax. I could really hook people up, but in the end if I make hardly any profit then it wouldn't be such a good deal for me.

I guess I'm done thining about it for now. I'll just drink a few beers later and that will help me decide. Sometimes when I'm not sure what the best option is I just wind some booze down my gom-hole and that helps to clear things up.

Friday, 1-24-14: I'm fired!
I got terminated this morning. I'm shit-canned. I'm FIRED. What a bunch of crap!

I was just beginning to shovel in my lunch at 1100 when the owner of Liberty Tax (whose name I will not post in order to maintain some level of confidentiality) called to tell me that my services will not be needed at her place of business this year. She had to let me go since I'm the junior soldier in her platoon. Her business has never made her a dime of profit in about 7 years of operation, and this year she downsized in a major way. She used to have three offices, one in Bangor, one in Old Town, and one here in Brewer. The first year that I worked for her back in 2011 I whored around to all three of her offices to fill in as needed. Then, in 2012, she "promoted" me to office manager at Old Town after Jeremy got done so I spent most of that season in OT. Last year I worked exclusively in Old Town for the entire season. Even though I was the "manager" I really wasn't because I was the only tax preparer there. Hard to be a manager when there's no one else to manage. Hahahaha!

The Old Town office never made a dime and I spent a lot of time there sitting around, hoping to get customers to show up. At the end of the season I suggested to the owner that she close the OT office and just keep her Bangor office open. The Bangor and OT offices are only 7 miles and about 12 minutes away from each other and a lot of OT customers go to Bangor a lot anyway. So she decided to close that office as well as the Brewer office, to downsize the operation. (She probably would have closed it anyway whether or not I told her that she should do so.)

^RIP, Old Town Liberty Tax.

I talked to the owner a couple times this fall about my coming back to do taxes again this season. She said she wanted me back, I said it would be part-time since I work at UPS, and she said that sounds great. As the tax season drew nearer I checked in from time to time, and I even went there twice this week to do some practice problems in the computer. TWICE. I went there on my own time, for free. Both times she was there and both times we talked about the beginning of the tax season. Yesterday I even scheduled a client. I had three appoinements in the book already for next week when I left the place yesteday late PM. OMG!

I'm really surprised that she called to shit-can my ass this morning. In a way I'm relieved, but in another way I'm pissed off at her. It's not a very good way to do business. She had nine fucking months to decide whether or not she was going to use me in her business plan and for her to shit-can me literally less than three days before my official first day (scheduled to report for the usual preseason training at 0900 Monday AM) is totall not cool. Fuck her for doing that bullshit!

I am relieved in a way to not have to work at Liberty Tax because I gotta admit that place has progressively gotten more and more bootleg. I love me some bootleg business because my rental property business is quite bootleg, but only to a certain point. She opened up a lame-ass yarn store right in the tax office in Bangor so half the store is old ladies buying reams of yarn. Since she opened the yarn store she's focused less and less on the tax end of her business. People buying yarn can look around the corner and see tax customers including the computer screens that we use to do taxes on. Noting like a little privacy, eh? When I was talking to Kristi (another more senior tax preparer) about that yesterday then the owner kinda got a little pissy about it. She sharply said "Last year it wasn't a problem." Hey boss, I don't give a fuck if some old bag wants to watch me do taxes as she knits a sweater in the corner over there, but your fucking tax customers might not appreciate it a whole lot.

Half her waiting area is hogged up by a table that's reserved for knitting groups that she hosts every Sunday. AAAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! OMG MY FORMER LIBERTY TAX BOSS HAS KNITTING CLASSES INSTEAD OF TAX CLASSES NOW. WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP! Oh, get this, she doesn't have any new tax books in that hole and she hasn't gotten any in three fucking years. I swear to the gods who do not exist that I'm not making it up. I've been studying Liberty Tax version 2011 for three years. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! I told her to get new books to whick she replied "They're $235." She's a miser!

Maybe I'm fired because I kinda mocked her dumbass yarn store (which she LOVES) and the fact that she doesn't have any new tax books. Fuck her!

She actually said she was letting me go because I'm the most junior tax preparer. The other couple soldiers left in her platoon have been there longer than me. They're nice people so I hope for their sake that the boss can keep the place afloat for a while more. Right now it's not looking good, though. I think that ship is sinking and sooner rather than later there will be no more Liberty Tax in this area, not unless she sells the place to someone who thinks yarn is fucking LAME. I just sent the boss an email and here is what I had to say:

"I still have in my possession a key to the Old Town office and a key to the Bangor office. I will return those to you ASAP. Thankfully I have two other jobs so I can still afford to keep a roof over my head and food on the table for my family, but I still do feel let down that you decided on the Friday before my Monday start that you would not be keeping me. More notice would have helped me a great deal, especially considering the fact that I've already paid for my PTIN and I started doing practice problems, bought new work clothes, etc. I hope you don't do that again to someone else in the future because I believe it is the wrong way to do business.

Despite my disappointment over being let go on short notice I still want to thank you again for the chance to make extra money over the past three winters and to learn a great deal about the tax business. Good luck this tax season and call/email if you have questions regarding work that I've done for clients in prior years."

The boss fired my ass on a Friday when my first day was supposed to be Monday. OMG THAT IS SO FUCKING LAME. I'm not sure how she will take that email when she reads it. My guess is she'll get pissed off, but at least she won't get as pissed as she would if she were to ever read this pathetic excuse of a site. At least I did say thanks for the opportunity and I didn't call her a fucking cheap pinko in the email. That's gotta count for something. Right?

In conclusion, I got fired from Liberty Tax. The boss had nine months to decide whether or not she would be keeping me, but she waited until I literally had clients scheduled in the book before she hauled on me. HEY BOSS THE LAST TIME I GOT CANNED FROM A JOB THAT COMPANY WENT OUT OF BUSINESS (CIRCUIT CITY, 2004) SO YOU'RE PROBABLY FUCKED. I'M 100% AWESOME AND A BUSINESS BASICALLY CANNOT RUN WITHOUT ME. OKAY, THAT LAST SENTENCE WAS A BLATANT LIE BUT SERIOUSLY, I DO GOOD WORK. GOOD LUCK SELLING PINK YARN AND KNITTIG NEEDLES TO 70YR OLD LADIES AND TRY NOT TO GET FAT AND DIE!

Time to see if anyone is hiring for a tax preparer in the area...

Thursday, 1-23-14: Natural gas price-gouge.
What the fuck, over? All I wanna know is why? Why are natural gas prices rising so much? I just opened the bill for my bootleg Bangor duplex: $523.94. WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP! I recently converted to natural gas at that property; the gas company put in a meter and started my service there on 12-12-13. This bill covers 12-12-13 to 1-16-14 so it's more than a month's worth of useage, but it's still goddamn outrageous. Gods damn it! The price per therm is the highest that I've ever seen, and I know the bills that I'll be getting at the end of next week for my other properties will be a total shit-show, too. The cost of natural gas has risen a lot already in 2014 so it looks like I'm pwned. What a bunch of crap!

Last summer when I didn't need jack fucking shit for natural gas the cost per therm was about 40 cents. Now it's as high as ever, up to $1.10 per therm. Plus there's a delivery charge of .28 a therm and a bogus "past gas cost adjustment" of 8.48 cents per therm. I still don't even understand what the hell the past gas thingie is all about, but in my view it's a giant "fuck you" to customers. How is it even legal of them to charge me a "past gas cost" fee? It's on everyone's bill so it's not just me getting fucked over, but man does it sure suck. HEY COMMUNIST SHIT-TWINKLE-TOED COCKSUCKERS, CAN YOU PLEASE CHARGE ME THE CURRENT MARKET PRICE AND NOT TRY TO FUCK ME OVER BY CHARGING ME A PAST-GAS FEE? JUST BECAUSE YOU FUCKED UP YOUR MATH IN THE PAST DOESN'T MEAN YOU SHOULD MAKE ME PAY FOR IT YOU LAME-ASS PILES OF CIVILIAN SHIT. WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP!

I guess I have to work at UPS even longer in life thanks to this bullshit. At the rate I'm going I'll be a working stiff (with a "real" job, not just the rentals) until I fucking die. WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP!

^Dear Bangor Natural Gas: Fuck yourselves up your stupid asses you fuckin' DINKS.

We're in the deep-freeze again so it looks like I'll be paying a ton for heat for a while. When it's 9 degrees in the early afternoon (up from -4 this AM) then you know you're pwned. Tomorrow will be 7, but at least we could hit 32 on Saturday. Unfortunately, we'll probably get some snow on Saturday and then I'll have a bigger plowing bill. All next week is looking very cold, much below average, too. WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP!

I need to head over to Liberty Tax so I can do some practice problems. I have my first client next Tuesday so my ass needs to be prepared. I guess I could just blow it off, but I don't have a whole lot going on this afternoon so there's no reason for me to not get as prepared as I possibly can. I went over there on Tuesday for a bit to get ready, but I still have a lot left to do before I feel like I'm 100% on top of it. I need to make a lot of money this tax season so I can pay for all this gods damned heat.

In conclusion, this winter can kiss my hairy ass. So can Bangor Natural Gas company. The end.

Monday, 1-20-14: Greatriots failure is epic.
The Patriots were definitely not the Greatriots yesterday during the AFC championship game in Denver. They lost, 26-16, and at no point in the game did they seem like they had any hope of winning. What a bunch of crap! To make matters worse, the Pats and God Brady lost to Peyton Manning's team. Gods damn it! I hate it when a Manning goes to the Superbowl.

It's been a decade since the Patriots have won a Superbowl. They've had some great teams since their last world championship, but in the end they've fallen short. This season they were 12-4 despite losing many key players to injury. They even lost a star player to prison (Aaron Hernandez) after the dude was busted for being a thug and for murdering people, gangster-style. What a bunch of crap!

So now it's the dead zone as far as sports go for me. I don't watch much NBA and the NHL can kiss my hairy ass so I just gotta wait for April when the MLB season gets underway. I will watch the Superbowl in 13 days, but I probably will fall asleep before the game even ends since I have to get up so damn early to start my shift at UPS on Mondays. I had to be there at 0300 today. What a bunch of crap! Fortunately, I can sleep in since I don't have to be there until 0450 for the rest of the week...

I just illegally downloaded a bunch of great 80s music. It's been a while since I've mooched music from the Interweb; I had a list here of songs that I wanted to possess so I just helped myself. The fact that I've never owned some of these song is a bunch of crap considering how great they are. Just goes to show that it's damn near impossible to own every great 80s song. I literally own gigabytes of 80s music so there's not a whole lot left out that that I haven't heard from the 80s or that I don't already own. Here are the songs that I just acquired (through perfectly legal means of course!)

Irene Cara - What a Feeling
Quarterflash - Harden My Heart
Huey Lewis - Walking on a Thin Line and I need a New Drug
Kix - Bang Bang (Balls of Fire) and Layin' Rubber
Dokken - Heart to Stone
Great White - Save Your Love and Rock Me
Britney Fox - Girlschool
Erasure - A Little Respect
Nena Cherry - Buffalo Stance
Flock of Seagulls - Space Age Love Song
Billy Ocean - Loverboy
Asia - Only Time Will Tell
Simple Minds - Sanctify Yourself

^Irene Cara... probably looks like an old bag now but looked great in 1983!

Best way to cheer yourself up after a Patriots playoff loss = rip out some awesome 80s tunes. (and drink beer... I did that yesterday during the game!) I need to burn all these songs to a CD so I can listen to them in the truck as I'm crusing the town. Is it wrong of me to still use CDs in 2014? I guess soon enough they will be 100% obsolete since everything is digital now.

This will be the last week until late April at the earliest when I don't have a whole lot of work to do. My job at Liberty Tax should begin next week (maybe?) so I'll be working 50-60 hours a week. (25-ish at UPS, 25-30 at Liberty Tax, plus a few each week doing the rental property basics.) I'm sure I'll have a week or two mixed in when I have some problems to fix at the rental properties as well so a 60-70 hour week isn't beyond the realm of possibility either.

I'm gonna stop by Liberty Tax tomorrow and get the scoop on the job there for this season. I already talked to the boss and she said my ass will definitely be working this season. I guess I'll work most Saturdays and 3-ish days during the week in the afternoon, maybe a 12-5 shift? I should probably figure that out soon. This will be my 4th year as a tax preparer, and in the three years prior I started around the 14th-17th of January. Now it's the 20th and I don't start for a week. OMG! Thank you IRS, thank you very much for being delayed again this year. I don't even know when people can file for the first tme? I should look...


From the IRS:
"Dec. 18 - The Internal Revenue Service today announced plans to open the 2014 filing season on Jan. 31 and encouraged taxpayers to use e-file or Free File as the fastest way to receive refunds. The new opening date for individuals to file their 2013 tax returns will allow the IRS adequate time to program and test its tax processing systems. The annual process for updating IRS systems saw significant delays in October following the 16-day federal government closure..."

Love how they blame the October government shutdown on their delays this year. Those fuckers! Ah well, I'm not in a hurry to file my taxes because I'm gonna owe several thousand dollars this year so I'm pwned anyway. However, it would be nice to start working at the tax job so I can make extra money to give to the IRS. Kinda sucks that most if not all of the money that I make from working at Liberty Tax this year is going to the IRS to pay my taxes. What a bunch of crap!

Friday, 1-17-14: Five for five!
I updated this bootleg site every day this work-week. Go me! Did you droolbuckets enjoy seeing a new update every day (all two of you?) That's a rhetorical question because this site is a bunch of crap so of course you didn't!

I finally corrected my life-work balance; I didn't have much going on with the rental properties this week so I could screw off some. I better enjoy it while it lasts because soon enough tax-filing season will be in full-force and I'll be working a lot again. Over the past three days I've been fully recovered from a cold so I've been jogging outside and lifting weights, too. I love it when it's around 40 degrees outside in the middle of January! Unfortunately, this relatively mild weather is going to spread on out of here and next week we're gonna freeze again. What a bunch of crap! It's 42 outside right now, but I'm skipping the jog so I can lose at racquetball soon.

I pretty much took a 2-hour lunch break every day this week. I watched some stuff on my DVR including Rise of the Planet of the Apes (not really a great movie.) and an 80s Schwarzenegger classic, Twins. In Twins Schwarzenegger and Danny Devito play long-lost twin brothers who were separated at birth. It was the period of time when Schwarzenegger made a string of great movies including The Terminator, T2, The Running Man, Red Heat, Kindergarten Cop, etc. etc. I've seen Twins before, but it's been a while so I enjoyed watching it again as I shovelled in my lunch.

^Born to be Bad! Arnold is the fucking MAN.

Today I watched some of TNA Impact Wrestling on the DVR as I ate lunch. Then I was gonna take a nap but fuck that shit I can sleep tonight. So I manned up and checked a few minor things off the "to do" list. I also cleaned the gym, my crapper down here, and some of the office. It always feels nice getting some things done. I don't have anything huge on the list anymore so that's a great feeling as well. I'll screw off this weekend and on Sunday the Greatriots play against Peyton Manning and the Broncos in Denver. Winner goes to the Superbowl. It's obvious who I'm rooting for:

^God-like man who is awesome and who gets to pokerize a supermodel wife. God Brady > anyone with Manning in his name. God Brady > God himself! (Although that's not a fair comparison since God Brady is a real man and God Jesus is a work of fiction.)

Thursday, 1-16-14: Happy birthday, Jason.
Happy 36th birthday, bro! I'd buy you a cake, but the only digital ingrediants that I possess came together to create this Asian mess:

^What a bunch of crap!

Mom and Pop spit out three kiddos many, many years ago. First to the world was my precious... precious arse in Nov. 1975. Then, on this day in 1978, Jason popped out. Doug took his first breath in February of 1980. Doug is a true child of the 80s! I'm jealous of Doug because he's not quite 34 yet. He gets to live longer than me! Well, I hope he does anyway. Even though both of my siblings are younger than me I'm still doing well enough at age 38. (I just ran 3 miles today. Booya!)

If Mom and Pop had to rank their three stooges in order of greatness I bet Jason would be #1. (My parents wouldn't really rank us. Probably. I hope!) Jason lives the closest to the ol' homestead and he's done very well for himself in life. He loves hunting the most so that gives him a special bond with Pop, and he already pumped out a grandkid for Mom so that will keep her happy for years to come. Pop LOVES hunting so having Jason nearby as his outdoorsman running buddy is great. Funny that out of a combined 107, soon to be 108 years on this planet that my siblings and I have been alive we've only given Mom and Pop one grandchild. ONE. Is that an epic failer or what? I want a kid as much as I want repeated kicks to the balls so for me it's great. I hope I NEVER have kids. In fact, I should get my thing blockaded so that the other things don't ever accidentally create children. I don't hate kids, but Kelly's two kiddos are plenty enough.

I'm glad Jason pumped out a kid. Unfortunately, he hasn't married Holly yet despite the fact that they've been together 6 or 7 years. OMG BRO, WILL YOU PLEASE MARRY THE MOTHER OF YOUR BEAUTIFUL YOUNG DAUGHTER?! She's the perfect woman for him, too. She's a great Mom, she's really nice, and she's overall just a winner in life. I dunno wtf he's waiting for, but my ass ain't married yet either so I'll kindly shut my gom-hole now.

Even though Jason has some weird mental block that prevents him from getting married I know he loves Holly and Nadia very much. On our hunting trip last week I heard him say "I love you." to Holly on the phone multiple times. I should take notes from him. I haven't told Kelly that I love her since maybe 2012. What a bunch of crap! Am I turning into Al Bundy or what? Remember that episode where he refused to tell Peggy that he loved her? If not go watch it now because it's hilarious!

^Me in a decade once Lexi and Dylan get older. Hehehehe.

I had the privlidge of working with Jason at one of his job sites in the fall of 2012, and I would have worked with him some more last year if not for the UPS job. He does audio/video installs, sometimes on multimillion dollar homes down on the coast. Such was the case when I worked with him for a couple days all those months ago. He really knows his stuff, and I was truly impressed watching him interact with all the contractors and his customer. He's a wizard when it comes to all this technology, which is ironic considering how horrible I am at it. (I was just his wire-bitch on that trip. He did the complex work!) You wouldn't think that hooking up a TV is that big of a deal, but when someone owns a 3 million dollar home and wants a TV/surround-a-round sound/DVR/etc. in every room then it gets complicated and costly real fast.

Jason paid off their family house as a Christmas gift to Holly just over a year ago. OMG! They have a nice place, must be worth at least 175k, and I know they were splitting the mortgage and (I think) all the bills 50/50. Some people might believe Jason isn't great with his money because he has all kinds of "toys" including a sweet boat and multiple vehicles. However, his financial shit is very much in a pile as evidenced by what he did at the end of 2012.

Holly has been hopig to receive a wedding offer as a gift for a few years now, but it never seems to happen. However, the next-best thing to that did happen on Christmas of 2012. Jason gave Holly a nice card that in essence read "I love you and Nadia, we're gonna be together forever, and we're gonna walk into the bank as a family and pay off the entire house. That's called winning!" I obviously made up that last part. What a bunch of crap!

So they went to the bank and paid off their house. (All I can see in my mind is my brother walking into the bank with a briefcase full of crisp, $100 bills, gangster-style.) I don't know how much they still owed on their house, but my guess is north of $100,000 since they hadn't lived there more than a handful of years. Wouldn't surprise me if they owed $125-$150k, but I'm obviously guessing when I write all these numbers. A mere week after Jason paid off HIS ENTIRE HOUSE we went to MD on a hunting trip in early 2013. We shared a hotel room and one night before we went to sleep I asked him about paying off his house. His answer showed me a savvy side of my younger brother that I honestly didn't know existed. His reply was simple and honest, "I've been in business for myself for 8 years and I've saved up some money from every job that I've done since. You've seen some of the houses that I've worked on."

I thought I was good with money, but compared to Jason I'm a drooling simp. To have the discipline to save up tens and tens of thousands, likely over $100,000, by setting some aside from each job = wise beyond years. Why don't I do that? I should do it, but instead my precious... precious money gets all thrown into one clusterfuck pile. I don't even do a great job of keeping my personal and my bootleg rental property money separate. What a bunch of crap!

When we were much younger we all thought Jason was gonna turn out to be the family wild-man. In high school the license plate on his souped-up red GMC read WAY2BAD. Hahahaha! He got into some trouble in his high-school years, but thanfully nothing too major. Then he went into the Marine Corps where he served honorably and where he won awards for marksmanship. He did his 4-years in the corps, he got out, and then he was still a bit wild for a few years before he started to settle down. Drinking with him and his friends (read some of the older archives of this bootleg site for awesome stories!) was epic because they'd literally get into fights, get booted from bars, and get punched in the face by women. Getting kicked out of Barnabys in a huge snowstorm by the cops... ahhh, good memories. Thankfully Jason isn't wild anymore. Did Holly tame the beast? Perhaps.

In conclusion, my brother, Jason, is great. I hope he has a most excellent birthday today!

Wednesday, 1-15-14: A look back at 2013.
Wow, two weeks of 2014 are already in the rear-view. Two down, 50 to go! Time passes differently as I grow older. I think it speeds up?

2013 was a good year for me. I think? I had some adventures, I worked a lot of hours, I got a lot of exercise, I made a decent amount of money, and I spent even more money than I made. (What a bunch of crap that is!) I started off the year not really knowing what I was going to do or where I was going to live since Kelly and I had split up. It was an amicible split, but at the time it seemed quite final. I took off on a hunting trip to Maryland right at the beginning of the year and, unlike the MD trip that I just returned from three days ago, it was a fun enough little adventure despite the fact that I didn't shoot a deer. The highlight of that road trip was definitely seeing Jason shoot a 22-pound deer. OMG THAT'S TINY!

^Literally 22 pounds and with no spots. Holy jesus we still laugh about that over a year later! His giant grin is definitely the cherry on top.

So I got back from MD as the first week of January wound down and I bivouaced in my bootleg office for a couple days before I decided to kinda-get my old bedroom back in my old apartment with Doug, his girlfriend Nicole, and Tommy. Doug and Nicole "Nailz" shared his room, I gave them a good rent discount for the use of my old room, but I ended up not staying in there very much at all. I still had some of my possessions at Kelly's, some down here in the basement and in my bootleg office, and only a handful of things in my old room. I didn't even have a bed in there; I just put fresh sheets on Nicole's twin-sized bed. I was all over the place!

Even though Kelly and I weren't really together we pretty much got back together in no time at all because I was at her place 6 out of every 7 days for the first few weeks of January/February and then every day beyond that. From March-July I think I slept in "my" room once, maybe twice. (I know I did after the Motley Crue concert in May.)

^Best concert, ever. Motley Crue, Bangor Waterfront, May 2013. A definite win! Unfortunately for me, the hangover the next day was a bunch of crap.

I had a brief respite from travels and work, a chance to finish up some rental property business, in early-mid January before I started working for my third season at Liberty Tax. I was the "manager" of the Old Town office, but it was just me, myself, and I up there as a tax preparer so there wasn't a whole lot to manage. I did have a couple part-time receptionists and Kelly even worked for me at that office for a spell. Pretty cool, eh?

So the winter marched along and, as the weeks passed and the days grew longer, my tax season wound down slowly but surely. The Old Town office wasn't that busy so I was glad to see the season end. Some days dragged by at that office when we had few customers. Overall it was an okay-enough tax season that put several thousand spare dollars in my bank account (all of which I spent. What a bunch of crap!)

After tax season ended in mid-April it was time to tackle some larger projects on the rental properties. I began with some landscaping work right here including a very bold plan to cancel a steep little hill and to replace the failing porch at my old/kinda-still-not-really-apartment. Meanwhile, Kelly was trying to get established in her own business as a licensed estitician so I helped her out with that project in a major financial way. Bye bye Liberty Tax income and then some! We ordered $28,000 worth of high-end equipment in March that partly bank financed and partly paid for out-of-pocket.

^The skin-care equivalent of Robocop's ED-209! But without the machine guns and destruction so it's not nearly as badass. Probably cannot go down a flight of stairs, either...

Since I was happily spending tons of my precious... precious money including raiding my IRA I decided that I should probably try to get another "real" job in order to stay a step ahead once the Liberty Tax season job ended. With Kelly starting out on her own came great risk. So I spent some time casually parousing the classifieds and places like Career Builder and along came UPS opportunity. It seemed like a great fit, part-time hours and close to my bootleg office right here in Brewer. Awesome! I applied, I got accepted, and I started my new job as an early morning warehouse supervisor around May 20th. Just a few days after the Motley Crue concert in fact.

RAMBO WENT CORPORATE IN 2013. Ah well, not like I have any awesome trade secrets from my days at FedEx to spoil. Packages go from trailers to conveyors to trucks to delivered. Pretty basic concept regardless of the company logo attached to the final product.

The UPS job coupled with the bootleg rental properties kept me very busy for the rest of the year. I worked on several major rental property projects, I worked at UPS every week, and I even went blueberry raking with Gavin in late July/early August. I was busy! Oh, in July I also picked up another job as the manager of a 2-unit building right down the road from my office here. The owner, a disabled guy in Rhode Island, had to fire his previous manager so I took over. I don't make huge money off that endeavor, but it doesn't take up a ton of my time either so I enjoy the challenge. When you add it all up I guess I have five different jobs now. FIVE! However, two of them are seasonal (Liberty Tax and blueberry raking for Cliff) and one is that aforementioned rental property management gig that doesn't chew through too much of my precious... precious time.

It was a good summer in 2013; blueberry raking was fantastic and Gav and I enjoyed camping out, working hard, having some drinks, and eating like pigs yet not getting fatter thanks to all the hard work that raking entails. I worked a LOT outside over the spring and summer so I was quite fit and nicely tanned. I'm probably gonna die of skin cancer one day. What a bunch of crap! A fun rafting trip to The Forks closed out August and pretty much what was left of summer, and then I shifted my focus onto gearing up for deer hunting and getting my Bangor duplex on the market.

^I actually finished this wall in late spring. It took a LOT of manpower to install all those heavy RR ties and to move all that earth by hand.

^The deck got done in early July. That and the RR tie wall took several weeks to finish.

^My July/August project at my Bangor duplex. Again, a copious amount of digging. Great exercise!

I hadn't planned on selling any of my bootleg rental properties for a long time, but an opportunity to buy a 3-unit building right here in this neighborhood came about in September so I jumped at the chance. However, I needed about $30-35k for a down payment, an amount that I don't just have lying around in the Cayman Islands in one of my offshore accounts (that I really don't have.) so I had a choice. Hock one of my rentals or forget the entire deal. I had put a lot of work into my Bangor property already including foundation repairs and the driveway expansion pictured above so I thought I could put more work into the place, make it more badass, and someone would want it for sure. A great plan!

^I signed a contract to buy that muther way back in September. Now I'm trying to talk Gavin into taking over my contract since I can't afford the place. What a bunch of crap!

I spent the entire fall working on my Bangor duplex, and I finally listed it for sale on the MLS with Jody in mid-October for $115,900. A few people came to see it, to kick it's metaphorical tires, but no one wanted the place. Gods damn it! So last November I finished the renovations, I found new tenants, and I told Jody to forget trying to sell it. Then, after I told Jody to forget about selling it, I had what seemed like 20 consecutive problems over there including frozen pipes, a dead furnace, ice damns, and, worse of all, a giant sewer backup. What a bunch of crap!

^No one would buy this house. Fuckers!

December pretty much sucked because I had all those problems to deal with at my Bangor duplex, I was working a lot of hours at UPS due to it being their Christmas rush, and the weather was horrible. I mean, it was BAD. December was the worst winter month that I can ever remember. Ever. We had a shitload of cold, a shitload of snow, and even a shitload of ice. Birch trees are still folded over thanks to all the damage they sustained from the 3-day ice-storm just before Xmas. What a bunch of crap!

Even though I worked a lot in the fall I did make time for some bowhunting, and I did shoot a spikehorn buck in early November here in Brewer:

^Precious... precious deer burger and steaks in the freezer. Oh Jesus, hell ya! Unfortunately, I had to shoot the poor guy 3 times and then stab him with my knife before he would die. (Just to be clear, I am not proud of that at all. It sucks.)

In conclusion, the best thing about 2013 was the fact that I stayed relatively healthy and kept myself in good physical shape. I got a lot of great exercise working outside in 2013. The worst thing about 2013 was my epic life-work balance failure. I worked way too many hours, and that would have been great if I had a giant pile of money to show for it. Unfortunately, I made money and spent it all. What a bunch of crap! So in 2014 I need to either stop working as much or else, if I do work a lot, I need to have more to show for it in the end.

Other noteworthy news from 2013 included the Red Sox winning the World Series. Oh Jesus, Hell ya! Their third win in 10 years is outstanding. President Failbama continued to look like a 'tard, and his incompetence as our worthless leader made headlines on a regular basis as the rollout of OBAMACARE was a shit-show. Gas hovered around $3.50 a gallon, give or take, and that's pretty close to the cost of a gallon of milk these days.

In August of 2013 Doug and Nicole moved out of my kinda-apartment and I officially shacked back up with Kelly. Tommy decided to stay so he got two new roommates and, for the first time ever, I had to have a tenant fill out a rental application for that apartment. Nicole went to NH, and for the third time in his life Doug went back to Arizona. Thankfully Tommy's two new roommates seem like decent guys. (If they fuck up then I'll drop the HAMMER.)

I can feel myself changing as I grow older. Is that a good thing? I don't really party anymore, maybe just have a few drinks every now and then. I spend more time watching FOX News these days, and I do crossword puzzles from time to time. Before too long I'll officially be old! Aren't crossword puzzles for old people? I dunno, but my Grammy used to do them and she was awesome as fuck so if you have a problem with it then come tell me to my face and see what happens.

Tuesday, 1-14-14: Last weekend's epic fail.
Last weekend can kiss my hairy ass. It sucked. It was a bunch of crap! Jason, Christian, Brandon, and I planned to return to the Annapolis, MD area again this year for a late-season deer hunt. Same hunt as last year, same redneck hunting "guide", same hotel. Unfortunately, Brandon cancelled at the last minute so it was just Jason, Christian, and I. A little extra cost split among us, no huge deal. I planned on spending around $600 total so maybe my cost went up to $650. Again, not a huge issue.

We left as planned on Thursday and made good time getting down to Maryland. It was a lot of driving for me because I had to drive 1.5 hours down to Rockland after the UPS shift to load up Jason and Christian and then continue 10 more hours, give or take, down 610-ish miles more of pavement to MD. The drive down wasn't horrible and I can't really complain about that (other than all the fucking tolls. What a bunch of crap those are!) but Friday things really started to suck.

The forecast for our two days of hunting was all bad. Meteorologists called for some freezing rain showers turning to rain showers on Friday and then heavier rain on Saturday. I expected to get a little wet on Friday, but it ended up raining pretty damn hard all day. ALL DAY. To make matters worse we watched the weather around noon and they said it was gonna taper off. However, it didn't taper off at all. Fail! Friday morning was all bad. It was just cold enough for some of the rain to freeze so the ladder stand was all ice and check out what happened to my shotgun barrel as I sat in damp 31-degree conditions:


So we all sat out in the freezing rain for about 2.5 hours, we didn't see jack friggin' shit, and we all got chilled to the bone. I got pretty cold despite the fact that I was bundled up. What a bunch of crap! We had a lunch break and then hunted in the rain Friday PM, but no one got anything that evening either. Gods damn it! On Friday PM I sat in my stand for about an hour or so and then I decided to just go for a stroll in the woods. I saw lots of deer sign and a small deer ran off, but nothing that I could shoot stood along my travels.

I woke up Saturday morning feeling pretty beat despite getting a decent amount of sleep, but I was okay to go hunting. It was raining again but not quite as cold as Friday AM so I stuck it out for a while. Then around midmorning I really started to feel like crap so once we were done with our lunch break I was all done. I was all beat up so I had to go to bed while Jason and Christian went back out for one final chance at a Maryland deer. It rained hard for parts of Sat AM while we were hunting (thunder included!) and the radar looked all bad for the PM hunt so I had to tap out.


I was laid up in bed at the hotel all Saturday afternoon and night, and I had no appetite at all. Thankfully I did have the energy to watch half of the Greatriots playoff game on the hotel TV with Christian that evening. The Pats took an early lead over the Colts and ended up winning big. We both fell asleep around halftime, I got a good night's sleep, but I woke up Sunday morning still feeling like 10 pounds of shit stuffed into a 5 pound bag. Thankfully Christian volunteered to drive our worthless asses home so I could sit in the passenger seat and take a few naps during the long drive back to Rockland.

No one shot a deer. NOT ONE DEER. EPIC FAIL AND WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP ALL ROLLED UP INTO ONE. Oh, as I was driving from Rockland back to home Mom called to tell me that Grammy had died on Friday. Back home Kelly had to spend the night at the hospital with Dylan, too. Thankfully he's better now. What a terrible weekend! In hindsight I would have paid money to have NOT gone on that trip.

It's been three days since I got sick and I do feel better today. I actually started to slowly bounce back yesterday; thankfully I didn't have to work at UPS yesterday morning. My appetite is close to normal again but I still don't have the energy to use the gym so I've just been hanging out, napping, watching some TV, and getting caught up on a few days worth of smaller things. This sucks!

In conclusion, my 4-day mini-vacation/hunting trip 100% sucked. I'm glad it's over. It was a waste of my precious... precious time and resources. What a bunch of crap!

Monday, 1-13-14: RIP, Grammy.
Grammy died on Friday at the veteran's home in Augusta. She was 93 years old, and it was her time to pass away. In her final days she had refused her medications (all ten or so of them), she had stopped eating, and she had even stopped drinking fluids. She just tapped out. Even though she was not even close to being all there mentally in her final days I think some part of her must have been lucid enough to realize that it was time to move on.

I'll miss Grammy a lot. She was a wonderful woman with a heart of gold. I actually just found out that she died last night when I was in Hampden and almost home from nearly 1500 miles of travel. Mom and Pop didn't want to tell Jason and I about Grammy's passing while we were in Maryland on our hunting trip so they waited until we got back to share the sad news.

Uncle Pete wrote Grammy's obituary:
Warren — Helen Ida (Johnson) Markwith, 93, of Warren, died Saturday, Jan. 11 (Mom told me she died on Friday) at the Veterans’ Home in Augusta. She was the wife of the late Roy W. Markwith of Boothbay Harbor. Born and raised in Massachusetts, she lived in Arlington Heights, Mass. during the World War II years and was a Navy veteran who served in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. She met her husband of 61 years at a USO dance held at an island fort in Boston Harbor.

Prior to moving to Boothbay Harbor in July 2005, she resided in Osterville, Mass. and lived in Livingston, N.J. for 37 years where she worked for Burrelle’s Press Clipping Bureau in a management role...

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to Friends in Service Helping (F.I.S.H.), P.O.Box 635, Boothbay, ME 04537. A memorial service will be held in the spring.

^RIP, Grammy.

I think it's so awesome how Grammy and Papa met all those years ago during WWII. If I had the ability to look back in time, to peel back the curtain so-to-speak, then my first choice would be to see that dance. In my mind I see it as a very classy event. A Navy band would be playing 40s instrumental music, there would be a big bowl of punch, red, white, and blue banners would be strung throughout, and everyone would be having a blast. I wonder how their first dance came to be? Did Papa walk right up to Grammy, extend his arm, and ask her if he could have the honor of a lovely dance? That's how I see it going down. Of course the reality of the situation is likely much different so nevermind that time-curtain thing. I like how it went down in my mind better than anything else anyway. It seems perfect.

Papa died almost exactly six years ago, and that took a damning toll on Grammy. Grammy and Papa were married for over 61 years, 23 more years than I've even been alive. Holy shit! I can't imaging being with someone for the life of two children, five grandchildren, and a couple great grandchildren and then having that one person who anchors you most to the world being taken away. I'm actually amazed that Grammy lived for 6 more years since Papa's passing. After Papa died in BoothBay Harbor Grammy moved closer to Mom and Dad. She lived independently for a bit at Quarry Hill in Camden in her own apartment before her health started to slip. After that she still stayed at Quarry Hill but in the assisted living section. We all thought once Grammy went into the assisted living section of the nursing home that she probably didn't have too much longer left on this Earth, but then she actually in a way seemed to get a little better so Mom and Pop made the bold and 100% right decision to add onto their own home so Grammy could live right with them.

^Taken April, 2012 right as we were moving Grammy into her new home.

The massive addition onto Mom and Pop's home took many months and at a great expense, but the end result was outstanding. Grammy had her own little 1BR apartment right at the house where I grew up! Grammy wasn't really able to 100% take care of herself so Mom and Pop paid for caretakers to come and help out. For 1.5 years Grammy called Warren, Maine her home and Mom and Pop took great care of her right at their house. We all met up at Grammy's apartment at the ol' homestead last October for her 93rd birthday party and a nice visit. Pete and Shirley were there as well as Jason, Holly, and their daughter and Grammy's great granddaughter, Nadia. Grammy's not passing away right after Papa's death was a blessing in a way for Grammy because, as Mom said last night, she got a chance to live long enogh to see more of her great grandchildren come into this world, including my adorable young niece.

Sadly, only days after we celebrated Grammy's 93rd birthday Grammy fell down and broke her hip. She had to get rushed to the hospital, they did surgery to fix it, but that incident spelled the end for my wonderful grandmother. From that point on she was bedridden and in and out of lucidity. Her mind really slipped backwards and at times she didn't even recognize my Mom and other family members. Even before the fall her mind was going, but afterwards it got much worse. I visited Grammy when she was at the Pen Bay hospital and she didn't look so good. Then, a couple weeks later, I saw her again for what would be the last time in my life when she was back at Quarry Hill and she looked even worse. She just looked tired, run-down, and ready to be done living.

When I saw Grammy in her bed at Quarry Hill (back in late November?) she looked exhausted. She was in and out of consciousness, but she did look at me and say "Stevie, so good to see you." We had a short conversation that was kept to the simplest of topics and then I was on my busy way, heading out the door and northbound back to home. I wish I had known that I'd never see her again so I could have stayed for more than five minutes.

After a short stay at Quarry Hill Mom and Pop decided to transfer Grammy to the Veteran's Home in Augusta. She was a WWII veteran, a Navy WAVE, so it seemed like a perfect fit. Ideally she would have stayed at Quarry Hill since Camden is closer to home, but the staff at Quarry Hill were somewhat incompetent so good riddance to that place.

Poor Grammy bounced around a lot in her final years. Her and Papa deciding to move to BoothBay Harbor was a bad step in my opinion, but what is the right decision to make withouth the benefit of hindsight? They couldn't stay in their home in Osterville on Cape Cod anymore because it was too demanding so they had to do something. So they did what felt right at the time, they stayed in BoothBay for what seems like no time at all before Papa died, and now I never want to ever in my life look at BootBay Fucking Harbor again. I would seriously pay money to NOT go to that town. Thankfully it's not on the way to anywhere so I guess I don't have to worry about accidentally passing through from time to time.

After BoothBay Grammy lived in four different places, but by far the best place was at Mom and Dad's house in Warren for 1.5 years. Now Grammy will be cremated and stowed away, hopefully in a dignified location, until May. We'll do a ceremony at the Veteran's cemetary in Augusta around Memorial Day and, if it's anything close to the ceremony that they did for Papa there in May of 2008, it will be a perfectly dignified way to close the book on the lives of my paternal grandparents. There's already a spot reserved for Grammy's remains to be buried right next to Papa's there at the cemetary.

Man, I need a tissue. I don't know why it's so sad, not like we didn't see it coming. When you have two people of the greatest generation live to be in their 90s, two WWII vets, and when those two people are solely responsible for your own existence, then you really should thank the gods who do not really exist for your good fortune. Grammy and Papa had long, fulfilling lives and they were both outstanding people. I really will miss them a lot. I'll always remember how nice Grammy was. She was a lovely lady who went about her business with honor and dignity. She never shit on other people, at least not that I saw, and she was always polite, well-mannered, and easy to talk to. When she asked about the things happening in your personal life she listened well because she actually did care.

Days like today really suck when you don't believe in the afterlife. I so desperately want to believe that Grammy and Papa are together in Heaven for the rest of etirnity. It's what they deserve.

I feel really badly for Mom and Dad. They gave so much to Grammy in her final years, not so much monetarily as Grammy's Social Security and other benefits and savings paid for her subsistence, but in time taking care of her. Mom especially bore the burden of taking Grammy to doctors visits, washing her laundry, preparing her meals, etc. I hope every dime of whatever stock/bond/savings that Grammy has left in her account goes to Mom and Pop because they definitely deserve all of it and then some for what they did for Grammy over the past several years.

RIP Grammy and Papa, I hope your spirit does exist on some undefinable level of human detection and you're dancing the night away on the shore of the Boston Harbor tonight.

Monday, 1-06-14: More weather fail.
Over the past several weeks a recurring theme for my bootleg site updates has been the brutal cold, the ice, and all the snow. It's been a bunch of crap! Now, after literally a month, it's warmed up to above freezing. It's actually 51 degrees outside here in the midafternoon. Awesome! Unfortunately, not so much. We have had a lot of rain along with the warm temps that has helped wash away ice, but since everything is such a frozen wasteland the runoff has nowhere to go and it seeps into my precious... precious cellar.


Thankfully I have a floor drain and it's not really that bad. A few years ago it was worse. I'm hoping it doesn't get any worse now because there's a bigass puddle along the exterior wall by my bootleg office here. Another inch and I think I'll be bailing water out of this office. F that! This cellar generally remains 100% dry, but every once in a while when there's a mountain of snow outside and then a period of heavy rain some water will invade. Thankfully most of the rain is about out of here. Tonight will drop down to 10 and everything will freeze solid again. What a bunch of crap!

This morning I had to work 7.75 hours at UPS. OMG IT'S SUPPOSED TO BE A 5.5-HOUR SHIFT THIS TIME OF YEAR. All the turd weather across the nation has backed things up so we got slammed with a Christmas-like amount of boxes today. Then, as an added insult, our last load of freight got delayed in the Etna Hills near Newport around 0400 because of freezing rain. I-95 was like a skating rink before the warm air made it inland. The driver said a state sand truck was off the road and traffic was pwned. It was fun waiting an extra 1.5 hours for that... NOT. What a bunch of crap!

Thankfully this week I'm only working four days at UPS, and the same for the following week. I'm taking Friday and Monday off to go to Maryland on a deer hunting trip with Jason, Christian, and Brandon. It'll be the same kind-of trip that we took last year. We'll leave on Thursday and return Sunday; the hunt will only be for two days vs. the three that we hunted down there last year. We decided to only do two days this year because last year the first day of the hunt was bow only. Bow only down there is a bunch of crap because the woods look like this:

^Mostly open hardwood. Nice woods, but not close-quarters bow-friendly.
The last two days of the hunt are muzzle-loader/shotgun so we'll be a lot more deadly with weapons that have a range far superior to that of a bow.

We're gonna hunt with Bill again, same guy as last year. Thursday will blow because I gotta start work at UPS at 0330 and then, immediately after work, drive 11-ish hours. That will be a long day! I'll be exhausted when we get there, but I'll man up and have a good time. I can recover on Monday when we get back because I decided to take that day off as well. I figure we'll get back late Sunday, and I don't wanna get 4 hours of sleep and then go straight to work. Plus I might have a deer or two to butcher that day, at least if all goes as planned...

In other news, the Patriots finished their season at 12-4 atop the AFC East. Awesome! They scored the #2 playoff seed so they got to skip the first round of the playoffs. Next week they play the Colts at home, but I doubt I'll see much if any of the game because we'll be in MD. It's a 2015 start so maybe I'll see some of it before we go to sleep. I dunno.

I guess I should go do other things now. I have some siding that's loose thanks to strong winds so I should fix that. I should also chip away at some of this ridiculous snow and ice before everything freezes later. I gotta hit the bank, collect some rents, and drop off some sand at my bootleg Bangor duplex before I quit and go home to eat and sleep. Everything will be like a skating rink tomorrow once it gets cold again. Thankfully it won't be as cold here as it is in the midwest. It was literally so cold in MN today that schools were closed because the kids would get frostbite in 5 minutes while waiting for the school bus. Worst cold out there in decades. What a bunch of crap!

Friday, 1-03-14: Too cold.
Holy balls I'm cold right now. It's too cold to do anything. What a bunch of crap! I would have loved to get out of UPS and hit the gym before lunch, but I need to warm up first. I can't get my swell on when half of my body is numb from the cold. Well, I guess technically I could but it would suck. So instead I'll pump the heat to my precious... precious body, eat lunch, take a nap, and then hit the gym later on.

It's -8 outside right now at 1023, and it feels a lot worse because there's a strong north wind. One of my tenants at the building next door called to tell me there's a water leak so I had to venture over yonder to take a peek. I already knew before I looked at it what the problem is. I didn't shovel snow off the roof over there and ice has caused everything to dam up. There's no plumbing leak and no epic flood, just a small trickle right now. The fact that anything has leaked at all is amazing considering mother nature went all-out beast mode on our asses and it's so cold. I knew I had to shovel that roof, but I thought it could wait a couple days until the temperature got to above zero. My bad there.

So I gotta venture my arse back outside at some point today to get up onto that roof with sledgie and bash off some ice. However, I literally cannot do it right now without a ski mask and proper artic-wear that I don't have with me. I do have on long johns and my coat and hat as I sit and type this bootleg update, but when it's -8 with a wind chill of about -40 then I need more clothing gods damn it.

Maybe I'll get up there this afternoon when it gets up to 1 degree...

Here's a massive icicle on this bootleg building that will soon take out the power line once it breaks off:

How do I proactively deal with that problem? I literally have no idea. I guess I could buy a flamethrower, but even at full blast it would take hours to melt that monolith away. Hopefully no one is dumb enough to stand under it...

Oh, if that's not enough then check out what the plow did to my bootleg fence a couple days ago:

^ OMG WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP! That fence has been there since maybe 2006 so that just proves how fucked-up this winter has been so far. I suppose I'll fix that in April; it's too frozen to deal with now.

Hey cool, I'm getting feeling back in my feet. (Wool socks on with slippers, too.) It's up to 59 degrees in my office. It would have probably been 35 in here, no joke, but I kept a little heater on overnight. It's never a good idea to leave an unmanned electric heater on, but over the past couple days it's either that or risk having it drop to below freezing in this hole. Gods damn it!

My plow bill came with the mail. I can't wait to see this epic fail of a bill! My guess is $800...

Guy adds up 320+165+165+100+165+165. Then guy takes away 165 because that's a property guy manages so the owner will pay for that one. Total for all = $915. What a bunch of crap! Plus, as an added bonus, I get a broken fence. GODS DAMN IT!

Doug had the right idea when he bailed out of this frozen hole to go live in Arizona. I keep writing about the weather every time I pop onto this turd of a site; I should be a meteorologist. Worst winter weather I've ever seen in my life..

I think in about 10 minutes I might be able to take my stocking hat off. I've had it on NONSTOP since 0245 this morning when I left to to to work at UPS. It's so fucking cold in that place, too. I gotta wear my coat, gloves, and a hat the entire time. Plus, as an added bonus, my boss got sand in his vagina because he fucked up the start time. We started too early so we ran out of freight to load. A massive winter storm hit southern and coastal areas so that delayed our air and some ground loads. When there was no work left and employees were hanging around the boss took all of us part-time supervisors on a guided tour of the lackeys as they stood around. It was great... NOT. He was so pissed off! Hey boss, not our fault you decided to move the start time up an hour.

One piece of good news did come to my ear this AM. We only got about 2" of fine, wind-driven snow from the blizzard (forecast was 2-4 for our area) so thankfully it barely missed. My plow guy said he ain't gonna plow since we didn't get enough snow so I get to save $170. AWESOME!

Thursday, 1-02-14: Happy New Year, losers.
It has officially been 2014 for about 39 hours. It has officially been above zero outside for about 8 of those hours. What a bunch of crap! After a record low of -18 yesterday morning we bounced all the way up to 15 degrees (still way below average) yesterday afternoon before temps plummeted down to -10 or so last night. Now it's still only -7 outside. We haven't gotten above zero all fucking day. OMG THAT'S A METEROLOGICAL BUNCH OF CRAP! I don't ever remember seeing a day where we didn't at least hit zero at some point. It's gonna start snowing soon, too. 3-5" as a big coastal storm grazes our area tonight and tomorrow AM. Fuck this I wanna go to Florida!

As part of my impending purchase of the apartment building across the street from my office I'm required to pay their plowing and heating bills until we close. Unfortunately, I need about $20k more in funds before I can make a purchase and there's no way I can do that by our agreed March deadline so yesterday I emailed the owners and pulled the plug. No deal!

^I want to own this, but I cannot afford it. What a bunch of crap!

I had planned to sell my bootleg Bangor duplex in order to pay for that building pictured above. However, no one would offer my ass even close to what I wanted for the Bangor duplex so I gave up on that plan a few weeks ago. Then, after I decided to keep the Bangor building, about 50 things went wrong with it including massive plumbing issues, frozen pipes, and no heat. What a bunch of crap!

So I decided to bail on the 3-unit that I have under contract now before I have to pay another $500 towards the principal and, worst of all, pay the next heating bill. December was TERRIBLE as far as not only snow but also cold weather goes. We haven't seen above 32 in weeks. Literally weeks. OMG. Even though they have a top-notch heating system in that building I bet the bill is still a few hundred for December. No sense paying that when the odds of my being able to get the place are so remote. Right? I think.

Yesterday afternoon I sent a lengthy email to the owner, and this is part of what I had to say:

To sum it all up, the odds of my being able to actually come up with the money required to buy your apartment building in the next 2.5 months is so remote that it's not fair for me to even waste your time holding it for me. Obviously I will forfeit the $2500 that I have already paid; I would never ask for that to be refunded as you were great to even give me a chance. Hopefully you can list the property and get closer to the $165k that you and Mary Ellen said it's worth.

If you don't want to go through a hassle of listing the property and inconveniencing your tenants with potential buyer walkthroughs (that caused tenants in my Bangor duplex to move out) then I want you to know I still 100% want to buy the building. However, I won't be able to save up enough money for a down payment until perhaps the summer. If it benefits you to keep holding the property for me beyond March then I'm willing to continue paying your heat, plowing, and $500 a month to the escrow beyond the March deadline. If that doesn't work for you then I totally understand and I hope the $2500 is enough compensation for your troubles.

If you do want to extend the deadline please let me know. I can come up with the down payment by summer and I'd be willing to keep paying $500 a month in escrow plus cover your heating and plowing. Obviously the more I put into escrow the more I have to lose if I fail in the end. If that doesn't work for you then I won't be upset at all. It's my fault in the end and I take full responsibility for any troubles that this news will cause to you both.

Bailing on the deal will cost me $2800-$2900 now (including a plowing bill that should come due in a few days.) but continuing would set me back closer to $5000 if I were to wait until March. F that! Better to cut my losses now and move on. Bye bye almost $3000 of my precious... precious money. What a bunch of crap! Cost of doing business, right? I think. I'd rather wave goodbye to that money than reduce the price of my bootleg Bangor duplex by $10-15k. Even lowering the price of that property wouldn't make it sell this time of year. Gods damn it!

There's a chance I might still be able to get that 3-unit, though. She emailed me back and said they might extend my deadline. Maybe. She needs to talk to her husband and realtor so for now I'll just sit tight and see what happens.

This week was awesome as far as work at UPS goes. I worked Monday and got both Tuesday and Wednesday off before having to work this and and tomorrow AM. Working 3 days and getting paid for five = oh jesus, hell ya!

So what are my New Year's goals and resolutions? As usual I really don't have anything too specific. My goal for the whole year is to average 30 minutes a day of exercise (182.5 for all of 2014.) However, that's no different from the past several years. I got off to a good start yesterday with 40 minutes of weightlifting and then racquetball. I could eat a little bit better, but that's not a top priority as I still only weigh 147 and am in no imminent danger of catching the greasy fat rolls on my precious... precious body. I would like to save up $20k so I can buy that building still, but I guess that's not really a New Year's resolution since I've been trying to save up for months already (and failing to save up. What a bunch of crap!)

We didn't do anything exciting for New Year's eve on Tuesday night. I drank a 6-pack and Walt stopped by for a nice visit. The kids stayed up relatively late, but no one in the house made it until midnight. Actually, Lexi said she and her friend watched the ball drop on TV. I fell asleep because I don't even care... if I care. I don't stay up until midnight too often these days. F that! On my days off from UPS I need to put sleep in the proverbial bank. On UPS work days I'm often in bed pretty early. I gotta bivouac early tonight since I didn't take a nap. In hindsight I should have slept for an hour, but I didn't know the boss would text us all and change the start time for part-time supervisors from 0415 to 0315. What a steaming bunch of crap!

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