Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Good Idears

A lot of Facebook posts most always seem to tickle my fancy and start the day off on a good note. Here are some of my favourite off-the-wall guidelines for living a happy life that are inspired by these posts. The real key is to never take things too seriously and you will just be fine. Laughter is a very strong medicine and is absolutely free.

…so why they hell are you so serious all the time!!

Silence is better than bullshit.

Pizza, beer, chocolate and ice cream make up the four essential food groups. (Your alcohol preference may vary and you can substitute your own there).

If it ain’t broke, then why the hell are you tryin’ to fix it!!

A regular oil change keeps everything running smoothly, and does as well in your car or truck.

If a man is in the forest, and there is no woman present, is he still wrong? (The reason why men go hunting I think is just to give their brain a rest from trying to figure out women)

Duct tape may one day be found to be the cure for cancer.

The middle finger has only one purpose.

We all would be better human beings if we treated each other like we do our dogs.

Pain is nature’s way of telling you that you messed up.

If at first you don’t succeed, then go get another beer (you may substitute here as well).

We are all dead for a very, very long time. No need to rush to be flower food.

So learn how to enjoy life and do your best to laugh with someone, not at them. You will amaze yourself at how attractive that type of person is to you and they will want to return the favour in kind. It doesn't cost anything to be nice to someone, but it sure does pay off handsomely.

Monday, October 20, 2014

He Has Your Eyes

New grandmothers, aunts and other female family members must all be on crack at the first sight of the latest addition to their family kinfolks. It certainly seems that way because they talk in a manner that they seldom ever used in the presence of that family. Normally they are all bossy like a drill sergeant getting troops ready for the next military training session but now they get all high pitched and musical with their “coochie, coochie, cooo” and “bless Patsy, he’s sooooooo cute”.

And then they start to comparing the precious little new one’s features to the new momma’s ones like “He’s got your eyes and nose, baby”. This might lead to the new momma checking out to see if hers are still there since she pretty much felt that the new one kind of took a lot more on the way out of her during that long birth session that went on forever and forever. “Junior just didn’t want to go and he was grabbing on to anything he could get his cute little hands on going out of the chute. I asked the doctor where the hell did he take all that stuff ‘cause it ain’t there no more or at least feels like it”.

And the in-laws now all do the comparison one-uppity style like with that same high pitched and musical tone like before “Ohhhh, he looks just like his daddy” which gets the new momma thinking “What he’s two foot tall, has next to no hair, a penis the size of my pinkie and smiles when he farts (well OK the last two are probably true)”. 

The new daddy might as well have one that size or not at all because after that “sperience” momma is not letting him anywhere near her for the next long while. “Get your trouser snake away from me, that thing is nothing but trouble and I just get a whole heap of pain for months on end. You already proved to me you are a pain in the ass, and now you want to spread it all over my body like a big tub of margarine. Not on my watch. Noooooooo”.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

My New Family Must All Be Drunk

...Gollybills, what in tarnation are y’all writin’ ‘bout NOW?
…pay attention girl, there may be questions after.
…and for you folks outside the immediate family, you might learn somethin’ important by areadin’ this stuff

The family dinner might include cod cheeks, pizza, cornbread, snag done on the barbee, red salmon, whisky grilled baby back ribs and golabki (pronounced go wompki) and Fosters, Canadian and Budweiser might be served there with some Vodka slime and Angry Orchard Hard Cider for those that don’t want beer and ginger ale, Dew or Coke for those that have long drives ahead of them or the young’uns. You might need more than one bathroom for all of these folks, too, in case they need to go on a mission.

Let me introduce them to you, or at least some of them since some are also underage and don’t get us older folks in our family. We exist online in a game we all play within our alliance aka alli. I never use real names in stories so the head of the family happens to be from Australia so she is MissAussie (New South Wales, Australia) and she is more like group moderator and works with our unwritten doctrine that we are all equal really.

Then there is MrInAlaska (lives in Alaska, USA), MissBCneeNewfie (formerly from Newfoundland and now resides in British Columbia, Canada), MrBCneeMaritimer (formerly from Nova Scotia and now resides in British Columbia, Canada), MissBama (lives in Alabama, USA) and me, MrCanook (lives in Ontario, Canada).

Each of us, at any given time, has wondered if one of the family members might have had too much to drink. You see it all revolves around what families really do best and that is have fun around the dinner table. And it all became very clear when one of the members sort of started asking if one of the others was OK and then the first one got on private chat and asked if everything was alright with me. You see some of us joined from another game and were in another family where one member was an aunt (oh did I spell that wrong again) and the leader we did not much care for the way she ran the household. So we moved out eventually in search of a new family.

So those folks kind of knew me a little differently and the way I was acting in the new family would surely make you think I WAS drunk. Well it is mostly MissBama’s fault (just kidding, I love to kid her) since we became friends really quite recently and we like to joke around and talk like hicks sometimes and also talk like Ricky and Lucy Ricardo and she is Ricky and I am Lucy. So you have more reason to think that we are drunk. You see I don’t spell out words fully anymore and sometimes used hick language so it does look like I am goofy drunk (I don’t understand what you are saying to me might be written “I doen unnerstan what y’all r sayin’ to me”). Simply put I was a lot more conservative and boring before and my approach to fun was more reserved.

You see it is hard to judge that state (are you drunk) in a person in our alliance chat window where we go loose on one another. If you happen to walk into the middle of the conversation, well you might think they are all drunk. The simple truth is we are all kind of high on life right now and we are having so much fun that we act like drunkards at times. And we are a tight family as MissBama kind of summed up when MissAussie asked about what she thought of us moving to another location in the game. She simply responded with “I go w/mfamly”. (I will go with my family for you dumbazzes that don’t understand southern charm).

So the family is evolving and learning (alarnin’) more about each other each day and we are not perfect. I have 3 pairs of varying degrees of invisible waders that I wear on occasions when I step into various depths of piles of warm, stinky, sticky stuff that I get into trouble on purpose to add to the fun. The last pair is a full body suit made out of Kevlar, carbon fiber and ballistic nylon and I do have fun when I am wearing those.

So we are all good and nobody is going to be taken away by the folks wearing white suits but what is really nice about this family is that folks are concerned enough to think you might need help.

And if you are thinking of joining our family well you better not be anal or tight down in that region (no true Scotsmen need apply) and if you can’t take a joke well you are definitely in the wrong room. We are not a powerful family in the sense of the game itself yet (war game on the ocean) but we are truly powerful where it really matters and that is in the heart. We have lots of that to go around and when you are happy, happy, happy most of the time well it would certainly appear that these folks are all drunk.

And we have one drunk uncle in our family that will drink to just about anything and maybe that is why he has to ask are you folks drunk because he can’t see the trees for the forest sometimes but we all love him and pick on him as much as we can.

…he’s just a big ol’ teddy bar
…nobody here is acrazy, just a little loopy and proud of it!!!!

Yes it is hard to figure out who is talking because just like any country family dinner, everyone is talking all at the same time because they just get excited and want to share everything with everybody all at the same time.

...so yeppers, we all unnerstan why Y’all think we are drunk ‘cause I guess we are lmtfo (laugh my tail feathers off)
…we are all gonna’ be dead for a very long, long time so lighten up and have some fun with friends
…I do like Go Rest High on that Mountain by Vince Gill but I ain’t in no hurry to have it sung to me in a room full of folks all dressed like Johnny Cash. I’ma havin’ tooooo much fun!!!!

…and MissBama does not say tarnation but gollybills, she does use gollybills more often than not.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Dumbazz History 101

This had to be a marketing ploy by a bunch of divorce lawyers at a convention hiding from their wives (or more likely ex-wives) and drinking way too many “brown pops”, but back in the day, there were lots of good old boys that truly believed this philosophy. Thank goodness sanity prevailed, well at least by some. No I am not a woman nor do I design clothes for them or not watch football and NASCAR and other stuff the good old boys hold sacred but I believe I hold all people a lot more sacred than these dumbazzes did.

I went to university but that didn’t really make me much smarter other than being a good observer. I happened to have lived in a co-ed residence where I gained great respect for the opposite sex since I did not have any sisters in my family. And I quickly learned that you cannot “train” any good woman to do your lazy-ass-bidding in even a gazillion lessons. What you can do is create an environment of mutual respect and trust and get rewarded in ways you never even imagined. I’m still single because I haven’t figured that out real well yet but I think I am finally getting it.

Let’s examine the “doctrine” these dumbazzes preached in the flyers that surely existed in real life. Someone actually made these up and I think later switched to other marketing ploys (since this failed miserably) with flyers like that and they knock on your door and act all cheery and stuff and try to force their own dumbazz doctrine on you.

The key is you do not force anyone to do anything in real life. You get them to see your viewpoint through lots of discussion about their viewpoint and then you find common ground and work from there. And there is another keyword, work, since a dumbazz does not know how or like to do that.

·       Fetch your slippers and pipe. Since he can’t or doesn’t know how to train a dog how to do this, he thinks he can actually get a human being to do that. The dog isn’t dumb either. Actually he is smarter than these dumbazzes.

·       Massage your feet. Might happen if you massage hers after she has taken care of all the really hard things she does all day long while you only “work” but maybe 3 hours a day at best. The rest of the time you are telling “fishing” stories around the water cooler, mostly with your other good old boys and telling more lies about “the little woman” that you would never tell to her face.

·       Serve you ice cold beer and snacks. That is another wish list item because, despite hours and hours of practice, you can’t even get it right at the old boys watering hole since the waitresses all know your game and know how to work you out of lots of that so-called hard earned money you make at the good old boys workshop (where not much real work goes on).

·      Sit quietly while you browse your favorite television stations. Actually she is sleeping mostly during those boring shows and watches important stuff without you because you can’t understand what is going on because the meaning is too difficult for your dumbazz mind. (Notice favorite is not written with a u, so no Canadian wrote that flyer and I can breathe a sigh of relief on that one. I think Canada has a lower rate of dumbazzes than most other countries in the world)

·      Respond to non-verbal cues, such as the snapping of fingers. This one is actually true and will work just fine, but not for the dumbazz. You will see her response all right, in the form of all manner of projectiles thrown by an arm with more control than Sandy Koufax and you will learn new blue words you never heard in the good old boys locker room. Heaven help you if she is packing anything sold that has to be kept under lock and key.

·       Answer “Yes, dear” to any and all requests. She WILL use two words but that is not them, well she will at least start with those two and if you are smart you will learn how to use thank you in every sentence you say to her, if you are truly smart (to get the attention of a dumbazz, try repeating what you said, often, if you are truly smart).

·       Greet you at the door wearing nothing but cellophane wrap (see flyer at top for their spelling). See it is a dumbazz writing this, since everyone else knows you spell that word with two l’s (ells, in case the dumbazzes can’t figure out that is not number one cause they can’t count higher than that or see that they are not number one).

You know they must have had mind-altering drugs back in the day in beer in the 50’s when this kind of flyer came out of Dumbazz Publishing House. There really can be no other explanation. And thankfully, some of us didn’t prescribe to Dumbazz Doctorial Teaching 101. But what I still wrestle with is how truly smart women spend ANY time with graduates of the old boys’ school. I have to be missing something in the equation but I am not going to hurt my head trying to figure it out.

Instead I will still try to find a woman (actually I think they find you) who wants a loyal and trusting partner that will give her the attention and caring she so truly wants but first I would have to displace that type of woman’s pet dog since they already do all of that without all the “bullshit” attached to the old boys’ dumbazz doctrine. There is a lot less to clean up after with just a dog.

I think the trick is to actually talk to each other about all the important things in life and come to a mutually agreed upon compromise on what is truly important. If you think being a couch potato that gets served at your bidding is a good way to go, well you will eventually just be a very big and fat piece of something that will just be good for nothing but flower food. That’s not a very rewarding way to go out. Try communicating with the meaningful other half of your relationship and you just might figure it out before they sing “Go Rest High on that Mountain” to you. Life is short and gets better if you learn how to share it properly with others.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Comparing Alaska, Australia and the Continental USA

What triggered this story for me was the fact that I am currently playing in an online game with people that reside in these geographical locations and I happen to live in Canada. I certainly did not know that much about the relative geographical numbers but was equally amazed that neither did the other players in our “family”. So, as per usual, I start to google like crazy and get the research going on these because it peaks my curiosity and I always learn some really interesting “water cooler” conversation.

The continental USA is sometimes referred to as the lower 48 and thus does not include Alaska and Hawaii in that grouping. Turns out that Australia will just fit inside that region if you could actually do that. Alaska is roughly 1/5th the size of either of those land masses (which totally surprised me, I thought it was smaller).  And Alaska actually has a larger coastline than the entire lower 48. Canada is about 25% larger than Australia or the lower 48. Populations (2013) are .735M (Alaska), 315 M (lower 48), 23M (Australia) and 35M (Canada). Try comparing Great Britain in size to the lower 48 if you want a big surprise.

And we were sharing current weather forecasts for the day in each of our countries. One of the other players lives in Alabama, one in Alaska, one in New South Wales, Australia and me in Ontario, Canada. It happens to be early in October and 81, 40, 81, and 63 are going to be the highs for the next day, Monday. It is of course early fall for the three North American locations and early spring for the Australian location. And each country has the pattern of 4 seasons but they are less extreme in Alabama and NSW but these two have much hotter summers, for example.

But what is more important in all of this, is our passion for having fun in our new “family” and even if we could hear all the different accents and fully understand the cultural differences, none of this really mattered much, other than having fun. The Internet is bringing people all over the world much closer to each other and if we focused more on having fun with each other than slamming all of our differences in tabloid and paparazzi or shock value photos, well the world would indeed be a better place. It is very hard to battle with people you really like. Eventually, you become even closer friends as one pair of folks has done so in the “game” after one was pummelling the other constantly.

I actually had a tough time finding the right spelling for paparazzi. Even googling “assholes who take pictures of celebrities in private conditions” didn’t work but I guess google just does not like to deal with brutal honesty.

I just call them as I see them and would like to take pictures of them and post them to tabloid media just to show them what it is like. I guess you can’t see much when your head is stuck inside where the son doesn’t shine. 

I think the laws need to change there much like threatening someone with a loaded gun since they both do a lot of damage if uncontrolled in the hands of a dumbazz. The camera or gun is not capable of harm until that character puts his/her hands on it, so camera or gun control is not the answer but dumbazzes in government don’t get it.

Apparently, they have the same viewing point as the paparazzi and must not have any sense of smell either.

Anyone for Dumbazz Control?? Not likely to happen because that is called self-control and the paparazzi and government seem to think they are beyond that.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Quantifying Someone Else’s Personality

Some would argue that you can’t put a number to a personality but I am attempting to show here a way to “measure” someone else’s personality traits within the context of how you perceive them using your own values as a reference. It is also intended to allow for the fact that these traits are dynamic in nature and will change over time. 

All the studies I took on the subject, in the past, always seem to try to put them into a fixed box and I had a great deal of difficulty accepting that notion especially when I put it in reference to friends who seem to demonstrate a tendency to have shifts in the traits from one time or another and, being male, noticed that to be even more prevalent on how the opposite sex reacted to me with pretty much the same conditions in place on my side.

And when I look at the image at the top I find I fit into all boxes now quite a lot and maybe that is a sign that as you get older you can develop a more well-rounded personality and jump in and out of it as the situation dictates. Some days I find myself more one type than the other and the same is true about the time of day.

So I suggest the scale depicted here in the coloured bars denoting two personality traits with how comfortable or uncomfortable I happen to be with those in the other person. The first one shows that I am extremely comfortable with number 1 but quite uncomfortable with number 2. And since I don’t like the concept of a fixed position or box, they are relative to mine and have many degrees or levels of intensity much like a gradient scale has.

So Number 1 could be Cooperative/Uncooperative and Number 2 could be Respectful/Disrespectful in the measure below. I am extremely comfortable with the first (very cooperative) and not so with how they show respect for others (quite disrespectful). So you would have to decide how important each trait is and perhaps put them into a hierarchy as well either mentally or even hard-copy versions for business use.

Now some are saying why would you do this and what purpose does it serve. Well the Internet has seemed to spawn a number of problems in communicating with others, in that it is quite sterile in how it deals with human contact. You do not sense the same things in a conversation with others in a chat window like you would face-to-face. You certainly can’t get their body language (without video help), voice inflections and accents would be mostly muted or difficult to convey and their mood is very hard to discern as well. ALL CAPS could be seen as anger, shouting, even rude and can be seen as being very happy if mixed like in the phrase "you are wonderful TYVM".

So you might be involved in a group discussion from many countries (and business is now facing this since so many are worldwide now) and want to assess someone as a new member of that group and try to find a number of desirable traits all of you want to have in that candidate. This measuring scale, depicted above, can help set reference points for the parties to share and come to agreement on where they see the “candidate” fitting on each trait. So a sales manager in Quebec, Canada, might be able to get an understanding going with the Marketing Department in Atlanta, Georgia, USA on how an effective advertising program would work in that part of Canada using the personality scales to help drive home the point.

The reason a lot of US-based operations (and for that matter the rest of Canada) fail so badly in the province of Quebec is they fail to understand the significant differences in personality between the two and a lot of hard work goes all for naught. They try to force their own approach on one that does not accept it the same way and it ends up being much like the “Talk louder and slower” approach to speaking to a “foreigner” that some Americans use abroad. It just doesn’t work and ends up leaving a sour taste in the “foreigners” mouth and they grow to dislike each other instead of trying to work out their communication and personality differences. I had lots of personal hands-on exposure to this in action and it is a reality and I am sure is not just restricted to that locale. Add other languages into the mix, religion and lots more miles and it gets even more complex and the Internet largely ignores these important differences.

Understanding others is sort of a passion with me and I take great pride in getting better and better at it. I have been told that I should work as a diplomat because of how I approach others initially in a potentially contentious environment but the truth is, if you tick me off long enough, you get both barrels backed by an uzi, bazooka or tank depending on how inflexible the other person gets. A dynamic personality can jump from one end of the scale to another in a short period of time if the right conditions appear and can help explain why someone who was calm and very cooperative switches very quickly in a short period of time. Simply stated, someone just really "pissed them off" in a big way and so you get the brunt of your actions back at you. That is honesty/dishonesty in action and can even go hard left off the scale which some see as going overboard but it can also be perceived as "straight-shooting". 

Sometimes agreeing to disagree and walking away is the best way to deal with these situations and using that personality trait measuring system helps tell you how far apart each of you are from one another. You can either let the sleeping dogs lie or undo the leashes and let them go frolic in the fields and have a party. I like the second one a lot more, thank you.