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Tuesday, January 29, 2008
That's What I'm Talkin Bout!
I just caught one of those Hanes Comfortsoft commercials with Michael Jordan and Cuba Gooding. A pretty middle-of-the-road commercial, right?

I got to asking myself: "I wonder how much Michael got for that commercial?"

Then I said to myself: "Hold up. I don't think he even says a single word!". As a matter of fact, they could have filmed that footage of him while he was going about his normal day-to-day activities.

That's what I want. I want to get paid for just showing up and doing what I normally do.

The Comfortsoft waistband IS soft, by the way. AND comfortable.

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Monday, January 28, 2008
TV Show: Breaking Bad
Breaking Bad is a new show on AMC. When I first heard about Breaking Bad, I was mildly interested. light of this whole writers strike thing, I figure any drama showing new episodes these days is worth a look.

The prognosis: I like it.

The basics: High school chemistry teacher Walter Smith (played by Bryan Cranston from Malcolm in the Middle) is working hard to provide for his family. His pregnant wife Skyler and his son Walter Jr., who has cerebral palsy. Walter has this nagging cough that for a long time he assumes is a nagging cold or something. When he collapses one day at work at his second job at a car wash, he finds out that he has terminal lung cancer. All of a sudden he realizes that he's about to die relatively soon, leaving his family in pretty bad shape. On the news he sees a story about a methamphetamine lab that was raided. What peaks his interest is that over $700,000 in cash was found on the scene. At this point , he decides to "rage against the machine," if you will, also known as "Breaking Bad". What happens? Well, that's the point of the show.

The pilot and the first regular episode have aired, and already A LOT has happened. I think AMC shows reruns often, so it shouldn't be hard to catch up.

It's worth it.

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Sunday, January 27, 2008
Semi-Book Review: The Water Cure by Percival Everett
This is a semi-book review, rather than a book semi-review. That means that I'm reviewing half of the book, got it? I'm glad we straightened that out.

Oddly relevant, this one is. The scenario: The main character is a man named Ishmael, whose young daughter was kidnapped from in front of the house where she lives with his ex-wife. She was found dead in a park a couple of days later.

Ishmael then somehow finds and kidnaps the man who did it, or at least is highly suspected to have done it. He plans on torturing and ultimately killing him.

This book, so far, is a difficult read. It is told mostly from inside Ishmael's mind. Imagine how scattered the mind of the average adult male is. Now. Imagine how scattered that adult male's mind would be after his daughter has been kidnapped, and after he has in turn kidnapped her killer. He jumps from subject to subject. He ponders Greek philosophers. He thinks about his ex-wife. He has conversations with the man who is tied up in his basement.

With any book. If you ever get to the point where you find it difficult, you have the option of stopping. Right? Well, what if you want to see what happens? You push through for a while. But it isn't getting any easier. Could the denoument be worth trudging through this crazy guy's mind? This guy's crazy mind? We'll see. I had just had these thoughts when I came across the following passage:
I can do what I like at any moment I like in this document or text of
however we name it because this is my world, universe, neighborhood, note
(though I hate seeing the word note in my notes), and I can do what I damn well
please and fuck you if you think I'm ignoring rules and fuck you if you think
that I'm being indulgent and fuck you and if you think that references to
archaic philosophical notions are mere erudition, wihch they are not, but fuck
you anyway because this is my world and you're welcome to it if you want to
enter and if you don't want to enter then fuck you twice anyway and if you do
want inside then fuck you trice because you fucking deserve it.

That about sums it up, huh? If you want to read, then fine. If you don't, then that's fine too. Close the book and get on with your life.

I'm continuing to read.

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Thursday, January 24, 2008
We Are the Champions My Friend
Check THIS out:

Nice, huh?

What's that? What's so special about this picture of our sooty fireplace? Okay. Let me zoom in a bit for you.

That's right. My league's (one of them) Fantasy Football Trophy. I accepted it just this past Sunday. Let me tell you, the hate in the room emanating from my league-mates was palpable. The trophy is new for this year. We even went back and added the winners from the past 4 years. Never mind them, though. This is what's important:

Yup. "Power of the Glow II". That's a nod to the movie The Last Dragon. The original "Power of the Glow" wasn't a half bad team, either!

Listen, if you're not into Fantasy Football, don't start. It can kinda take over your world.

Yes, indeed. We ARE the Champions, my friend.

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Some Things Change. Some Things Stay the Same.
First, the things that stay the same:
  • I STILL read license tags. A sample below, and more to come.
Kind of a scary license tag, huh?
  • I STILL live in Decatur. I haven't seen much particularly outstanding lately, but I did come across a little something... I saw this at my local Home Depot. The sign did say "Contractor Pickup", but part had fallen off. If you can't see it very well, it says "ACTOR PICKUP". Just a little chuckle.

The things that change:
Well, many things change, but I gotta admit there's one thing that's been conspicuously absent from the blog: There's another Mau on the way. That's right. Mr. and Mrs. Mau are expecting a Baby Mau. This isn't new news, either. Expect a joyful post with birth weight and length, hopefully along with a hearty "Mom and baby are both doing fine!" in LESS THAN THREE MONTHS. Did I mention it's a boy? You're damn right it's a boy! (For the record, if it were a girl, I'd be saying "Damn right it's a little girl!")

Gotta talk some more about Baby Mau. This is the first grandchild on BOTH sides, so I've got a feeling we may be spending a LOT of time un-spoiling him! For now, Mom and baby are both great. We got a 3D ultrasound last weekend, so if Mrs. Mau approves, I might share his picture. Still mulling that one over.

What else? My brother, Mr. O, just started a new job that's he's really excited about, so our clan is pretty happy all around. He hasn't posted anything in a while, but he's still around.
That's all for now, family. Be well.

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Saturday, January 12, 2008
I Live in Decatur 6: Get 'em While They're Hot

I have a friend who collects Jordans. He buys the new ones when they come out, and he looks at them for a little while, and then he puts them back in the box, and puts them away. If you visit his home, you may be able to get him to play "Show and Tell". When he and his wife moved into their new home, I tried to sell him on actually displaying the shoes in nice plastic boxes on the wall in their "office", but his wife vetoed that idea.

Anyway, this is something that I'm not into. I'm just not.

My friend is not alone. Not by a long shot. There are MANY people who eagerly anticipate the release of new Jordans.

So eagerly, in fact, that they will stand in line in front of the store and wait for it to open on the day the shoes are released. Rather, the night:


That's right. The Athlete's Foot near my house opens at midnight so that people can buy the latest Jordans.

The first time Mrs. Mau and I witnessed this, we had NO idea what it was, and were SO curious to find out what was going on to cause all of the commotion, that we pulled into the parking lot and asked someone:

"Hey man. What's going on here?"

"The Jordans." - This guy had a weird high-pitched voice, plus he was clearly not from the South because it sounded more like "The Joy-ens."

"The what?"

"The Joy-ens. You know. Shoes." With this, he actually pointed at his feet to get his point across.

"Oh. Okay. 'Preciate dat." And we motored the window back up.

With this, Mrs. Mau and I looked at the line at the door (at least 30 people), looked at the marquee, and then back at teach other. Quizzically.

"Wow." We were silent for a few moments after that.

That's right. The new Nike Air Jordan basketball shoes. Actually, in the picture above, it's more appropriate to say "The new old Nike Air Jordan basketball shoes." Because these were the Retro ones.

I live in Decatur.

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p.s. Can YOU tell that the "8" on the marquee in the picture above is upside down? I certainly can. I see that kind of stuff all the time, and it bugs me.


Friday, January 04, 2008
This is NOT a Political Post
Do me a favor. Read the title again. You got it. This is NOT a political post.

I saw a blurb somewhere online this morning talking about Barack Obama's victory speech last night after winning Iowa. There are links to YouTube video on Obama's Campaign Site, and the NY Times has the transcript.

I can't honestly say that I usually listen very closely to political speeches. Like Obama mentions, I usually find them chock-full of what people want to hear versus much factual information. I thought this one was pretty good. I can say that I enjoyed reading it.

I did "furrow my brow" at his talk about hope. For all of it's blemishes and faults, the United States is the place people want to come to when all they have. For the most part, I'd say that the ones that make it here are to take that hope, and improve their own quality of life as well as that of their loved ones. The assertion or even the slight implication that we don't have hope or that our level of hope is somehow lacking is typically American; rose-colored glasses, if you will. The woman in college in Cedar Rapids? In many places she wouldn't be able to even go to college. That son in Iraq? He enlisted. He wasn't drafted. In many places, he wouldn't have had that choice.

I think I would have much preferred that he use the word optimism, instead of hope. It's not quite as strong a word, but much more accurate and appropriate, methinks.

This has NOT been a political post.

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It's a new year, y'all. Act like it.
I'm not real big on holidays. My immediate family doesn't have a huge i nclination to be together at Thanksgiving, and we never had a Christmas tree at our house when I was growing up. I knoe there was no Santa Claus waiting to put presents underneath that tree, so I didn't really have a sense of loss there. I welcome Memorial Day and Labor Day because we all need a day off from work sometimes, right? Anyway, you get the point.

One time of the year I do get a bit reflective and introspective during New Year's, though.

Have you ever woken up on a Wednesday or Thursday morning, and reflected on all of the things that you want to do that day?

Have you ever woken up on a Monday morning and spent a few moments planning out the whole week?

Well, at New Year's you can plan out your whole year. Cool, huh?
Not only that, you can look back at the things you said you were gonna do last year, and grade yourself. Or not. If you come up with a year-old goal that you didn't accomplish, you can either renew that goal, or decide it wasn't all that important, and drop it.

It's a clean slate. A new beginning. You think your 2007 was busy? Just wait. 2008 will blow your mind.

A note on 2007. It wasn't the greatest. Don't get me wrong. It definitely had it's high points. Most of the cooler stuff I haven't even shared here on "ye old blog", you don't know the half of it. But 2008 - I'm positively giddy just thinking about it.

My plea to you: Don't waste your clean slate. Not to be a downer, but you aren't guaranteed another one. I'm not asking you to sit down and write a whole list of Resolutions. Just one...and you don't even have to write it down. You don't even have to come up with it yourself. I'll give it to you. It's not hard. You can do it.
  1. Do better than last year. Improve. Progress. Learn. Grow.

Have a great year, good people. An outstanding year. Ground-breaking, and trend-setting.

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Thursday, January 03, 2008
I Live in Decatur 5: Just. Stop.
I'll confess first that this photo was taken squarely in Atlanta, and NOT Decatur. In the parking deck for Lenox Mall. The date was February 10, 2006. I was going through some old photos on my computer, and came across this.

That's right. Feast your eyes. Let them take in the whole image. that? Did they...? Yes. They did.

Some...BAMA...slapped Mercedes Benz badges on a Chrysler. The star isn't even centered.

Do. Better. Do it for me. Do it for yourself. Do it for your as-yet-unborn kids. (At least, I HOPE this idiot hasn't procreated.) Do it for the soldiers overseas. Do it just for kicks. I DON'T CARE WHY! JUST DO IT. BETTER! FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS GOOD IN THIS WORLD, PLEASE REMOVE THE MERCEDES BENZ BADGES FROM THIS P.O.S. Even if you keep the "Kompressor", at least take off the star.

Thank You.

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