Monday, June 30, 2008

Number 91

91st post of the month. That is all I have. Sorry. The good news is: If this is not enough for you I have a money back guarantee.

Out of Office

I am out of the office for today and tomorrow. What is so interesting is that I have not set my out of office. I did not set it for Catalyst last week either. I do not know if I didn't because of my Blackberry or just because I did not want to do it. Life sure is different when you can have the always on connection of the Blackberry.

Today while I was at the Webelos Wilderness camp I could not get a signal. I was really away. It was not that weird because I had 5 boys to look after and we stayed pretty busy, but when I sat down to watch the boys swim I thought I could get a signal - but I didn't. I truly had nothing to do. I am bringing a book for tomorrow.

I did receive 20 emails today while I was "away." I only responded to the important ones (sorry if one of yours wasn't responded to, but this was to be a day off).

LINKS for Today

XP is finally gone! Unless you really want it. Then you can get it. This is becoming crazy.

Being able to write a curse word on a test and then getting points for it. That is stupid. What is even more stupid is that the curse does not really answer the question.

What more can you say about Tiger Woods? He is the worlds best golfer on one leg, one and a half legs, on a unicylce, where ever, whenever. He crushes the competition.

World Exclusive! See Walmart's new logo here.

Diana and I watched The Godfather (parts 1 and 2) this weekend and I highly doubt that Grand Theft Auto matches up. The Godfather created the mafia movie and the entire genre that so many people try to rip-off nowadays.

I think that original programming on the internet will take off in the next five years. As soon as everyone has the high-speed access to take advantage of it. If the media companies put good content out for people - we will find it.

This sounds good, but in my line of work I email so much that trying to cut it down would have me on the phone 90% of the time. I am just not willing to do that.

Family Coming

This week will begin the Roblyer family reunion for 2008. All my brothers and sisters are coming to town. I have an older sister in New York who will be arriving one week from today. My sister is California will be arriving on the 4th - just in time for fireworks. My older brother who lives in Iowa (for now - will be moving to Omaha [somewhere in the middle of America] soon) will be arriving in time for the fourth. It will be a good time. My younger brothers family (who has the longest commute time of any of these people) will be here too!

Filling Out Online Surveys

I have been a member of E-Rewards for a couple years now. When I first joined I thought it would be a joke - like most internet surveys are. E-Rewards has been great. I have bought Delta Skymiles from E-Rewards - over 2500 in two years. I have bought Blockbuster rentals (one free per month for six months). I have bought many magazine subscription (Golf, Parenting, more). It has been good. Tomorrow I will buy another 1000 Skymiles (you can cash in on a product only once a quarter - and I already bought Skymiles in April). Look through the rewards and if you see something you like let me know - I have over $115 in credit. You can even join yourself - it is not a scam - this is real!

Webelos Wilderness Camp

Today Jordan and I (and four other Webelos) went to Webelos Wilderness adventure camp. We passed off the Forester and Naturalist pins, shot BB guns and bows and arrows, and we finished the day swimming for two hours. It was a good time. We go back tomorrow. The itinerary for tomorrow is Readyman (required for Arrow of Light - last one Jordan needs), Communicator (we may skip this because most of the boys already have it - we would do Geologist instead), a long lunch period so the boys can hit the trading post and then more swimming - another 2 hour session. 3 of 5 boys fell asleep on the drive home - so you know they had a good time. For more information you can see the posts below that have pictures attached.

Webelos Archery

At Webelos camp there was also an archery range. The boys did pretty good. Jordan got a bulls-eye. I thought he might have some problems but he grabbed the bow and started shooting with no problem. I would even say (there is no Dad-pride in this) he was the best of all the boys. Anyways, here are some pics (Notice the boy next to Jordan loading his bow right at Jordan - Webelos camp is not very dangerous at all):

Webelos Wilderness Hike

Today at the Webelos Wilderness camp we had to go on a 3 mile hike. It was not that bad, except that it was first thing in the morning, and I had already ridden the exercise bike 10 miles that morning. The legs were a screaming during this hike. We had a good time though. No one fell off the side of the mountain - which is good.

Holy Lizard Batman! It's a Lizard

Sitting watching the Webelos swimming today (for only 2 hours) a little lizard went running by. I snapped a quick shot because I knew my readers would love seeing a lizard.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Kitty likes fireworks

The kitty jumped up and blocked our view of the fireworks for a while. What a mean cat. If you look closely you will see some fireworks in the background.

All in all it was a great first day back in Utah. I have missed it.


It looks like the state of Utah is celebrating me coming home. There was fireworks tonight that we could see from our backyard. They were pretty cool.

I Am Home

I am home. It has been 9 days of work and fun. Back to bewing home...where things are always happier. At home I can go to bed when I am tired. My wife does not make me move signage at night. Breakfast is not served in a room that seats 700. Best of all, at home I have someone I can put my leg on as I go to sleep. The hotel does not offer that for less then $300 an hour.

The kids decorated the window - I don't think that Diana helped - she has much better handwriting.

Hello? part 8

Last day of quotes, but everyone has loved this so expect to see quotes from Catalyst when I am in Prague in October. Because I am home now, some of these quotes come from my travels today, some from my walk this morning.

"Cats are fireproof!"

"Only one of the most infamous Mexican prisons ever!"

"I don't hate peas, they are just not my preference"

"We are almost done with your yard, and when we are done it will be better, barely"

No quote, just close your eyes and imagine: Old dude with a Binky in his mouth.

Kansas City BBQ

While I was in San Diego the Kansas City BBQ burnt down. You probably do not know what the Kansas City BBQ place is. Well, I have never eaten there - but I have been inside. Some scenes from Top Gun were filmed there. They (used to) have a picture of a F-16 painted on the side. I guess we will see what is there when I come back to SD next year.

The Hotel

I showed you many views from the hotel and such earlier in the week. I never did show you the hotel. This morning on my walk around, I decided to take a shot of the hotel for you to see where I had been staying. If youcound 19 floors up that is where I was. I was near the center of the building.


I saw these birds ripping apart the top of a croissant this morning. It reminded me of Burton Group employees around the gummy worm snacks break from earlier in the week!

It was interesting how these birds have no fear of man. As I sat down for breakfast there was a plate with a croissant top. A bird flew right over me and landed on the plate, took the croissant and flew away. As soon as he had it on the ground five other birds joined in as they ripped it to shreds. Within five minutes there was no croissant left. It was pretty amazing.

Friday, June 27, 2008

The Embarcadero

I am posting this as I walk down the embarcadero in San Diego. This is a really great place to live. The weather is great. I just finished talking to Diana and I miss the family. It is time to get home. Diana told me the cat got out today. 4 hours later she came back and everyone was happy. That was a close call. It is the second time the cat has gotten out. Both times she has come back on her own. I guess that means she is ours. This reminds me of the last Catalyst North America I was at. I fly home and after a long week I finally climb into the car. The cat was in the car with the family. I was like what is going on? Diana tried to play it cool, but it soon came out that the carbon monoxide alarm had been beeping. That could be trouble, so I asked what kind of beep. Diana says one short beep every couple minutes. That is when I had to break it to her that the short beeps mean that the battery is dying. I am sure the cat enjoyed the ride to the airport.

Post 201

This is my 201st post since I started the blog. I hope you have been amused and I think the next 200 posts will be even better than the first 200. Thanks for reading.

All Done

Catalyst is over. Now it is just the wait to go home part of the trip. Most people leave today. Some of the people that are staying are going to dinner at 5PM tonight. I am planning on going, but I want to get a nap in. My feet are killing me. My back hurts. I feel like I had a hot pocket. It has been a long couple days.

The good news is that I am taking some time off in July to spend with the family and extended family and Chloe and my trip to Sacramento are coming up. Summer is just beginning for me now. I am sure by the time my vacation time is up Diana will be sick of me.

Catalyst Europe starts end of October.

Diana Came to Pick Me Up!

Out in the parking lot I saw this today:

I had to check with Diana via IM that it was not her in the car coming to get me. Not that that would be bad. Just a long drive when I have a flight tomorrow.

Today's Game

I am glad to report that when I got in the elevator tonight I was able to see the 19 and push it in about half a second. My brain must be working today. Hooray for me. Going home Saturday. One day left for the conference.

Hello? part 7

More quotes. These are great. I am sure when I get home I will some explaining to do to Diana. Just kidding. Me and her go over the quotes everyday so she can know what is going on while I am away.

"A yodel means we are starting right now"

"I love the stairs"

"This is so Grey's Anatomy"

"It is not testosterone, it is Sid-osterone"

"They know the way of the tramp"

"What is the safest way to do this?"

"We passed jacked-up two exits ago. This is destroyed"

"We are all wrapped up here"

"See you in Prague"

Fireworks from Sea World

Saw fireworks while I was moving signs tonight. They were pretty good. Much better than the fireworks at the Padres game last week.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Those are some big balls

I guess one of the hospitality suites is going to be sport themed.

Best Break Ever!

On Tuesday during the workshops we had the best break ever. Here is a picture of Littlkins partaking of the snacks. I covered her face because she does not want to become too famous for being on the blog.

The break consisted of just snack foods. Popcorn (three different flavors), licorice (red and black), chocolate malted milk balls, jelly beans, gummy worms, white chocolate covered pretzels, and caramel apples. I do not remember the drinks, but I am sure they were healthy. Can I just say that is the best break we have ever had at any Catalyst.
The very pinnacle of the cherry on top is when the hotel then rolled one of these bars into the work office. Sweet action.

I could pull this look off...

I have much better legs than this guy. I do not think I would wear socks with this outfit. Times like this I wonder just how breezy it would get to wear something like this. Just how would it change my day to day activities? Would I walk differently? Would I sit or pick up things differently? If you wear something like this you just have to know some people are going to sneak a peek at some point, there is nothing you can do about it.

By the way, this was one of our speakers today.

Hello? part 6

Day 2 of general sessions. So busy I forget to remember some of the good quotes. I am doing my best.

"It is always nice to feel special"

"I am the judge"

"I am perfect"

"We could use another mic"

"I am done with that girl, send up another"

"We like to help out deals"

"My brains not working"

"I want to drink it"

"If my wife leaves the top of the carrot on it pisses me off, but when the hotel does it, I kinda like it"

"I'm looking at her virgin"

"It's mister fluffy to you"

"Do you want some face mister?"

"That is what they say right before they pull out the weapon"

Let's Play a Game

I am sooooo tired.

On the way up to my room I stared at the elevator buttons trying to figure out which number was the 19. It only took me about 37.5 seconds. I then took a picture so you can play the game too. How long does it take you to find the 19?

How you know that you have been travelling too long

Top 5 list on how you know that you have been travelling too long:
5. You do not look for the room number as you slide your entry card in.
4. You look for Zack and Cody in the lobby.
3. The view just is not as grand as it used to be.
2. You stack the pillows on your bed to be in the shape of your wife to try and get some sleep.
1. You don't have housekeeping make your bed so it feels a little bit more like home.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The Top Row at Petco Park

Have you ever wondered what the view on the very top row of Petco Park is? Here are some pictures so you never have to think about this ever again. Enjoy!

This post was cool when I was originally going to post it is just stupid

Also known as...that sure is one long title for something that matters so little.

I took this pic as a preview of the Catalyst stage layout, but then I forgot/did not have time to post it. I wrote an email to my wife instead. Plus, I posted a pic of the stage and the crowd earlier, but because I need to clear this picture off my Curve I now present to you the exclusive preview (when the picture was actually taken) of the Catalyst Conference 2008 stage layout:

Not getting to 100

Not only do I give you shaky camera work to look at, I just noticed that I am at only 59 posts for the month. There is no way that I am going to get to 100. Sorry I got your hopes up.

General Sessions

Below is the Catalyst audience in our "big room." Sorry for the shaky camera work. I suck. This room had over 580 people at its peak. This is where our Identity-guys hang out and speak, as well as our CEO.

To day was pretty smooth. Not that we did not have any problems, it is just that the problems were realtively small. Just 1 and a half more days to go.

Hello? part 5

First day of general sessions at Catalyst. Now is when things get good.

"Coffee likes me"

"I'd pick you"

"That's a lot of stairway for one guy"

"We changed mic's because her outfit was too loud"

"That is so I-15 at 5:30PM"

"If we stick a CAT-5 cable in her ear"

"The PC Whisperer"

"Did he say 'broken catheter'?

"I can't find my phone" [Said as I was talking to Diana on my phone.]

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Hello? part 4

More items overheard at Catalyst Conference 2008 in San Diego:

"That would put a horse down"

"Can I hide this in a plant"

"Punish me Karl, punish me"

"Matt may be the muffin man"

"I don't mind heights, I just don't like falling"

"Do you need some sandpaper and little paint brushes brought up to your room?"

"It's the friction between you and the shoe"

"I need more leverage"

"The moms get upset when the babies die"

"Going bo derek"

"I'd put that, but this is a g-rated blog"

"Godfrey, my cheeks hurt"

Monday, June 23, 2008


Here in some of the Manchester Grand Hyatt bathrooms they have the push faucets. I hate these things. You know the ones I am talking about. You push them in, the water comes on and then turns off automatically. The thing is, the water never stays on long enough. You end up either having to push the faucet over and over again and sometimes you even have to do the one hand at a time thing. Why can't faucets be automatic or even turn? Below is a picture of the faucet in one on the bathrooms here.

Hello? part 3

Overheard at Catalyst on Monday (and yes, there is a long drawn out story to each one of these, if you do not know the story, feel free to ask me). I will update as the day progresses (it is too hard to remember all these for one big post at the end of the day):

"Is it hot in here?"

"It's whipped!"

"Did Karl get my pony yet?"

"Where's Stephani, I need to punch someone"

"I don't see any penguins"

"Matt has a secret 12-year old boy in him"

"I'd marry chapstick if I could"

"He's fixing the skirt"

"Is Matt wearing a woman's shirt"

"It's not a bird, they're dinosaurs"

"Gulp...and that is all I think I can say"

Today is the Day

Catalyst has begun. We have special interest groups that are starting at 8:00AM. Workshops start at 1:00PM today. Registration opened yesterday. This is where we see if our months of planning are going to pay off.

There are still some things to do, but I think we are mostly ready to pull this conference off. The registration system is running well. The speaker management and presentation management system is up and you can download from it. The schedule/meeting management piece had a problem yesterday and we have the vendor working on it. I hope they can get the problem figured out.

Burton Group employees from around the world started to arrive yesterday, and I was able to talk to some of the guys I usually IM or phone with. This is one of the weird things of being in a virtual company. You spend a lot of time working with people that you rarely meet and interact with. I work out of an office with about 50 other people. But there is another 75 people that are not in the office. The rest of the company starts to arrive today and tomorrow.

Our attendance numbers for this years Catalyst are just about to pass last years. Which, in the current economic climate, is pretty good for us. We will have over 1150 paid attendees, 125 Burton Group staff, about 30 vendor attendees that assist us in pulling of the conference, and over 400 hospitality suite personnel. That is a lot of people.

The madness has begun.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Hello? Part 2

Overheard at Catalyst on Sunday:

"Helping your IT security one plastic banana at a time"

"You only get to punch one person per Catalyst, don't waste it on Sunday"

"Is that where they do Tai Chi on the boardwalk?"

"God Listens"

"You need to get more sleep"

"I want to go out on the water. Does the hotel have a boat?"


There was fireworks after the game today. And they were pretty good. I got some pictures of them. Enjoy.

More baseball

Went to another game tonight. 37th row this time - not the third deck (that was yesterday). Here is a picture from tonights game.
The Padres lost tonight. They had some good offense in the first couple innings and then it died. No more runs, hardly any hits. Not a lot from that point on. The game was fun. It was a good night for baseball. This will be the last game I will get to on this trip.

Saturday, June 21, 2008


Overheard at Catalyst today:

"Myrod this is Hester"

"I would be Neil Diamond"

"I have never seen the video for Muskrat Love"

"Hi, I'm Larry"

"What the heck...over!?"

My View

I have been posting the view from the hotel window and from my hotel room. Here is the view I see all day:Not so jealous now are you?

Hotel Stairwells

I love a hotel that has great stairwells. Some of the hotels we have Catalyst at have horrible stairwells. The Manchester Grand Hyatt is not one of these hotels. Well lit, wide, and the stairwells are in great spots that can take you directly where you are going - the stairwells are a much better option than the escalators at this hotel. Below is my favorite stairwell at the Hyatt. This goes from the BG office directly to the registration area.

View From My Room

Looking out my window this morning I see that an air carrier came to port last night. It is pretty big. Too bad the zoom on my curve is not better. Here is the view from my room, and remember, this picture was taken at 6:00AM here in San Diego:

Was It All A Dream?

12:32 AM

That is when the fire alarm went off in my room last night.


Speaking with the other BGers this morning no one else had this happen to them. Maybe this was just the hotel welcoming to another 8-nights of away from home goodness.

This is how it all went down: I had just turned the lights off and was actually just heading to dream land. All of a sudden the freaking fire alarm went off. It is buzzing. I am thinking this has to be a joke. The problem is, 5 minutes later, the alarm is still going off. Finally, someone comes over the alarm system and says that there is no report of a fire, but you can leave the building if you would like. DO NOT USE THE ELEVATORS. Now I am thinking, "If this was a test or something they would have said it. Maybe this is real." So now I am up and starting to get dressed and deciding if I should take MY stuff with me, or grab WORK stuff for the coming week. While I am trying to decide what to do and just sliding some pants on to leave a guy comes over the speaker system and says, "We have investigated the alarm and there is no fire. Thank you."

Now all I am thinking is, "That is all I get after 10 minutes of a buzzing alarm in my ear? Where is the 3 free nights? What the heck...over?"

Now I hear a fire truck coming. I look out the window and see the truck coming down the street and pulls into the parking lot for the hotel. A little late there. I would have been burned to a crisp before they got here.

Now I just need to know if it actually happened or if it was all a very lucid dream.

UPDATE: One of the Swisscom people, our wireless vendor at the conference, also heard and was effected by the alarm. He actually went down all 19 flights of stairs to the lobby before he found out there was no fire.

View from Office

This is the view out the window near the Burton Group office in San Diego. Now you are jealous.

Notes from Today

Who are these people that get departure/arrival gate 1 or 2? Today when I left Salt Lake my departure gate was the very furthest one from the entrance of the airport. When I landed in San Diego I was once again as far from the front as I could be. Crazy. I do not think I have ever had a departure/arrival gate that was below 7. Crazy.

Being a temp worker would be weird for me. Always going somewhere else. Work always at the whim of someone else. Never really know what was going on. We had like 8 temps today and they loved the work (very easy, stuffing bags). The problem is, they did too good of a job and now we do not need all 8 of them tomorrow. They did too good - so they actually lost work. We are getting a couple temps to stuff badges, but that is easy work. Then some of the other temps will come back on Sunday to work the registration desk for us.

I was talking to LD and Littlkins yesterday about Catalyst and how it makes you really think about who you work with. If someone gets on your nerves when you see them for 30 minutes of an 8 hour day, what happens when you spend 15 hours a day with the person? I think you learn how to act like you enjoy someones company when you really don't.

At the game tonight there was a family of 4 (mom, dad, little girl, little boy). The little boy was too small to be at a baseball game. He was making noise, moving around, almost fell out of his chair at one point. The mom got sick of telling the dad to watch him, so she just stopped watching him too. He kept hitting or kicking me. What do you do in a situation like this? The kid does not know better, but it is very annoying. I just leaned forward where he would not hit me. What would you have done?

Jordan made a smore dessert. Why do they do this after I leave? Why couldn't he make this yesterday when I could have had it? Here is a pic:

Friday, June 20, 2008

Padres come back

The Padres hit a couple home runs to take the lead, and then they went ahead and gave that lead up. In the 8th inning the Padres loaded the bases and then hit a coupe singles to score some runs. The Padres score 4 in the 8th to win. The Tigers went out weakly 1-2-3 in the ninth. The RF for the Padres did make a sweet running, over the barrier, into the crowd catch to end the game. It was pretty cool.

I took some pics and if I can get them off my phone I will post them. For some reason I cannot send the photos without getting an error on my phone.

Live! From Petco Park

Hello. I made it safely to San Diego. I spent the day managing the temps and getting some logistic items set for the conference. It was a busy day. Once I get back to the hotel I will post some pictures from today.
Game update: middle of the third, Tigers lead 1-0. Granderson hit a home run on the second pitch of the game. Maddux is pitching and the Tigers are hitting him pretty hard. He is lucky we are in San Diego or a couple long flyouts would have been homeruns.
Watch for more later.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Flat tire

I got a flat tire in the Infiniti today, while on the way home. I made a quick change of the tire on the side of the freeway. Pretty scary with cars a trucks zooming by so fast my car is shaking. I am not very happy with the flat tire, but I still love my car. The only bad part is that I have to wait until I get back from San Diego to get the tire fixed and get the car back in tip-top shape.

The flat tire happened on I-215 right where there was a bunch of construction yesterday because there was a huge car crash and it ripped up the road. Then all the cars that went over the road caused a bunch more damage. The tire looks like it was slashed on the side. I do not know what I hit or ran over. The Infiniti did do a good job of being safe and driving great even though it had a flat.

1 day to fly

I fly tomorrow to San Diego for Catalyst Conference. I will not be home until the 28th of this month. Long trip, a lot of work, but I do look forward to it. It is fun. I miss the family and my wife while I am gone. That is the only drawback.

Expect to hear a lot from me in the coming days. You will be able to see Catalyst from behind the scenes. I will even post some pictures of how it all goes down.

I bet you are all super-excited.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Real Rich People

Why do people that have so much money not do the right thing? Prince Fielder needs to pay his bills. I know that it is hard to pay a $400,000+ to the IRS, but do the right thing. I pay my share for the money I make. It is a joke. Why did he not just pay the money when he made the money. I know that is I got paid 2.4 million or even 670,000 I would ensure that everything got paid off the top so I know that I have the rest to spend.

Thanks Dave's Family

Tonight when I finally got home I had lasagna waiting for me. It was good. My friend Dave's wife (their family attended the Cinco De Mayo party we put on) had brought over some yummy lasagna with the pan that we had given them full of enchiladas before.

Meetings At Work

Have you ever had a day when you see someone walk into your office/cube you just know it means two extra hours of work? It happened to me today. In walks one of the IT application developers and asks if I have a minute. We begin to talk and he wants to totally change the agreed upon process that we are trying to fix. I say "Whoa, we just cannot make this decision, let me get my boss." I IM my boss and he says he will be down in a minute. While we wait he starts telling me the story of how he spoke with the UI/usability developer IT has on call and they think there is a better way to make this scheduling program we are working on. The new way is entirely in Outlook, which is great, but consists of multiple meeting requests being sent and received BEFORE it would even go to the client/vendor. Unacceptable. We talk for about an hour as the IT guys try to explain why there way is better. It is not. My boss and me are fighting back and telling them that we had an agreed upon process and now they are totally changing it. Ohhh, and by the way, we have a meeting with some analysts tomorrow to show them the agreed upon process. This is crazy. After an hour we decide to cancel the meeting tomorrow and just the four of us meet and chat more about this. My boss walks out and the two (yes, there is two now) stay in my office so I can gauge my bosses thoughts/body language for them. I told them, "This is not happening, we are going with the system we talked about last week. There is no way I can go in front of the content team and show them the convoluted system they want to do. The IT guys keep saying, "Hey, this is what [UI guys name] says is the best way to do it. The analysts do not want to use SharePoint." I told them that I no longer care what [UI guys name] says I will not OK the system he wants. Basically, these IT guys were crazy and it goes to show that your IT team does not know your job as well as you do and they might give you suggestions on ways that they think might help you, but you as the IT team client needs to step up and make a final decision and have the guts to tell IT, "NO, that is not the way this is going to happen."

The real bad news is that this meeting got me home way late and I disappointed my wife again. I am such a jerk.


You know how some people at work just have no idea what you do? At my work we always bring new employees around to everyone and introduce them. The awkward part comes when the person (the boss of new person) doing the introducing does not know what you do so there is a different story every time, or you have to interrupt them to tell them what you really do. The last two times this one person has brought a newbie around they have completely blown what I do and it goes to show that they have no idea (I have corrected this person both times). Today this person brought another new person around (yes, we have gone through a few of this type of employee lately) and they said that I own the collaboration system at my work. I don't. I manage programs for the content team (hence the title, Program Manager). I do work with the company collaboration tool (SharePoint), but that is not the main part of my job and not a good definition of what I do. Why am I ranting like this? I do not know. I just think that if I was introducing people I would do it a little differently. How about if you just did the introduction and then asked the old employee to tell the new person what you do for the company instead of just guessing it out - or saying what you think the person does. I don't know.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Sucks To Be These Guys

On my way home I drove by an accident (I snapped this while waiting in traffic). I feel bad for these dudes. Especially the dude in the 2008 Ford Fusion that got hit by a 1995 Subaru wagon.

Rarely do you see two really nice cars in an accident or two beaters in an accident. It seems that the nicer car gets smashed by someone else's piece of junk.

I do not have any numbers to back this up (think before you hit that comment button). I am just saying what I remember the most from my experiences.

It Gets Hot In An Infiniti

Below is my dashboard today. It has a temperature gauge. Today it read 91 degrees when I got in and started the car. Yesterday was 105 degrees. Littlkins and LD keep telling me I need to tint my windows and then it will not be so hot. I just tell them that I will just park in the shade. All I is hot in my car when I get in.


I do not really want to get that into politics here on the blog, but some things just have to be said and talked about. Today I read this. After I finished reading I was mad. What kind of people are these Texas Republicans? I cannot believe that anyone would allow this, or is it one of those, "any publicity is good publicity." Now I am not an Obama-lover, but I will be voting for him. I think most people know that Bush has not been a good president (some of the lowest approval ratings in history) and a vote for McCain is a vote that Bush-policy should continue. Before you say that McCain is not Bush...look at their records. Look at what they agree on. Every major item that Bush has messed up royally is a something that McCain agrees with Bush on. McCain is also a huge jerk. He has done things that are criminal if he was not in the senate.

Also, any woman that voted for McCain after hearing his history and how he got married to his current wife can never speak about the Clinton's and how they ruined the presidency. McCain is not a good man. He has done some good things, but he is not a good man.

Before you want to flame me...check the facts. Check the history. I am just reporting the truth. Here are a couple links to news stories on this subject. Story 1, Story 2, Story 3, Story 4

You Guys Are Funny

Today at work LD and Littlkins gave me crap all day long! They think I am just like the guy below:

The girls think that I spend all day playing with the Blackberry, which is not true. Today while I was in LD's cube Littlkins did this:

She thought she was pretty funny, but I know that she is only funny because she hangs out with me.

Also, today I took the Blackberry off during my service director meeting and then left it off during the company meeting. I did not put it back on for a couple hours. Could an addict do that?

Celtics Win

I am happy. I know too many jerky Lakers fans to have LA win the championship. Most of these people are of course, bandwagon followers. I liked how soundly the Celtics won and there was no doubt the C's were better than the Lake-show. I wanted Ray Allen for MVP though. Pierce was not a bad choice though. I can see that, but he completely stunk in one of the games. Allen was very consistent throughout all the games.

I want to thank my wife for letting me watch all the games that I was available to watch. Hot action!

Monday, June 16, 2008


Being able to load videos onto my iPod and then plugging the iPod into my plane seat for a long flight would be awesome. Almost enough for me to want to switch to United. In reality I just want Delta to do this also. It would be awesome.

While it would be great if your company could provide every electronic gadget for you, in reality very few actually help the company and would be paid for by your company. I think everyone should be outfitted with a Blackberry, but not everyone likes being connected to work every second. For me, it is priceless.

Get the computer license to drive. I aced the part I took.

Some email really just is not delivered. Weird. Some of those emails that just go off into the ether have to be mine. I swear that. I think only about half the emails I send are actually delivered and read.

Some cool new laptops from Dell. I like Dell machines. The ones I have bought work great. The one I got from my IT team from work is a piece of junk. It is starting to freeze up sometimes on startup.

Click here for a freaky site. It takes a minute to load. Also, turn up your speakers.

The Race to 100

I want to post 100 times this month. I think I can do it (especially with Catalyst items this week and next). We will see. Last month I posted over 80 times and it seemed like a lot. This month I am at almost 30 and the month is half over. I may have to do a 24 posts in 24 hours marathon to get caught up.

I just love these challenges.

Inside the Infiniti

Here are some pictures of the inside of the infiniti. One is the radio and AC deck on the dash. I am still trying to figure it out. The car was a good drive today. I filled it up at Costco and it cost $57! Which is a lot, but this car has a 19-gallon tank. After today's driving I am at 23 miles per gallon. I hope to be able to up it a couple more MPGs before I have to fill up again.

Below are pics taken while I was driving. You can see the kids - they do not want to be on the blog, but I took the pictures anyways.

So far, I have driven to Saratoga Springs twice and to work once. It is a good car and I still love it! Thanks again family for the great car and the great father's day present!

Bruise update

We are now at one week since Diana's doctors appointment where she had blood drawn. This is what her bruise looks like today:

If this doesn't go away soon I see a malpractice suit coming!

Saturday, June 14, 2008


Jordan and I ran to Cabela's today (yes, in the new car - Cabela's was the first errand in the new car). We had never been there before. It was pretty cool. Stuffed animals of all types, people buying things like crazy, and a lot of stuff that I just do not think that I need. What did I buy, you ask? I cannot say, but it was probably something for father's day (either my Dad or Diana's Dad, or something for both of them). Overall, Cabela's was pretty cool. I would go back. I do want to try their restaurant - it is supposed to be real good and have some interesting items on it (some not-usual meat types for hamburgers and such). I just cannot believe how big the place is - and how much stuff and people can be in the place, as well as the parking lot. Cabela's is like its very own city. It is crazy. Only if it had stuff in it that was actually cool.

Happy Father's Day to Me

I got an early Father's Day Present today:

As you all know I have been jonesing for a new car. I found one the other day, a 2002 Infiniti I35. I have loved Infiniti's for a long time, and now I finally have one. I am so happy. We got a good deal, I got a good car, things are good. I drove down to see Ry-Ry with it today. When I stopped by my parent's house they were gone, so they did not get to see it. I will take some more pictures of it tomorrow. You have to see the inside to believe it. It is super nice.

Ohh, and I will drive this car for, basically, the rest of my life. I love it.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

8 days and counting

In 8 days What the HECK...Over will be blogging live from Catalyst Conference in San Diego, California. I go to San Diego next Friday AM and will be on site for setup and preparing for the conference. I will be there on Monday and Tuesday for workshops and the opening reception on Tuesday night. The general sessions start Wednesday AM and continue through Friday afternoon. Each night select vendors host hospitality suites with food, fun, and product demos. I will get home in the afternoon of the 28th (a Saturday). I hope to post on many of the great presentations that will happen during the three general session days.

I will miss the wife and kids while I am gone and it is a ton of work, but it is a good time. I like to go to see my mostly virtual company come together at once, while at the same time seeing how much our clients really do count on us (Burton Group) and how much they admire most of our analysts.

Ducks in the backyard

Tonight as I looked out in my backyard I saw a duck. One of the neighbors actually has pet ducks (he used to have a goat to). Then the kids noticed that the duck a little trail of baby ducks following it. They were cute. Me and the kids went out to get a better look and I took some pictures with the blackberry. Here is one of the picutres (I circled the ducks so you can see them better).

Chloe had weird hands

Every once in a while Chloe gets a weird rash on her hands/arms. It is weird. Here is a picture of it:
It usually goes away after a half-hour or so. If you have a Ph.D. we will take your thoughts on what it is and how to take care of it. We do not go to a doctor becuase by the time we got to the office the rash would be gone. I am saving this picture on my blackberry for the next time we go to the doctors.

Diana's Bruise

Diana went to the doctor on Monday. She is OK. The doctor is putting her on a higher dose of the blood pressure medicine (he wants her to be under 130/80 - she is marginally higher). She did have to get her blood drawn, which they do once a year. Her bruise has gotten worse each day.

It is usually very hard to get blood from Diana, and the vampire usually takes it from the top of her hand. This time they found a good vein on the side of her arm and they got it in one try. If this keeps up by the end of the week her arm will be completely blue.

Diana is telling her freinds that I caused the is her revenge for my passive agressive NBA Final post the other day.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Movie Trailers

Wanted (Diana's favorite show):

Dark Knight (new trailer):

Hancock (this movie looks great, and I am not a Will Smith fan):

X-Files 2 (I was not a huge fan on the TV show, but I really liked the movie):

Star Wars The Clone Wars (a computer animated movie to kick off the new TV show):

New iPhone

New iPhone. Seems pretty cool. A lot cheaper. There is a little less news coverage that AT&T raised the prices on their iPhone service plans. What the heck, over? That sucks. You can get more coverage of the iPhone here, here, and here. Oh...see the price increase for the data plan here.

I still love my Blackberry.

Good News

Jordan had an eye appointment on Saturday and we got some really good news. The doctor checked his eyes and they have improved greatly (from about 20/2600 to 20/620). He is getting new lenses in his glasses for the new prescription. Also, for now we will not be "patching" with Jordan. Patching is when you place a patch over the good eye to make the bad eye do all the work. There are also some things you can do to help your bad eye get more work. This doctor likes to give the kids glasses with one red lens and one green lens. Then you get a colored pencil and fill in all the open holes in a magazine or newspaper page. For now we don't have to worry about it. The doctor even said that if things improve this good for the next 6 months to a year - Jordan might not even need glasses. It would be great to get to that point.

Secondhand Serenade

On Monday I won tickets to the End Zone for Secondhand Serenade (Diana's current favorite song/band). I was pretty happy and Diana was ecstatic. The only thing was that the show was at 3:45PM and I had a meeting from 2 to 3PM. Diana said she would come get me and then drive together to the show. Diana got to my work early enough, but my meeting went over (about a half-hour) so we missed the show. Instead me and Diana spent time chatting in the car. I promised to buy Diana the CD for Secondhand Serenade, hopefully that makes up for missing the show. Diana listened to the show on the radio as she drove back home. During the show they gave away tickets to the actual concert tomorrow night. So, now not only did I make Diana miss the End Zone, but she missed the actual concert as well.

I am such a jerk.

NBA Finals

Watching the NBA Finals right now. I got the best wife that will sit and watch "stupid" NBA (her words). The only annoying thing is that she turns on her laptop volume and goes to sites with sounds and music while I watch. I don't say anythin as I sit here, but she will read this and then know. Pretty passive-aggressive, huh?

Anyways. The Sunday night game I called the big comeback by the Lakers. The Celtics were up 24, I told Diana that we could not change the channel because the Lakers were going to make a game of it. And they did. There was only about 25 seconds that were really close. The Lakers waited too long to come back, but it was fun being right.

The Lakers are not playing that well (Kobe is), but Boston is completely horrible right now. If Boston does not wake up the Lakers will crush them tonight. If Boston can come back and win this the series is over.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Friday Night

Last night Diana and I went to a friends house for a couples party. We had a good time. Everyone brought their favorite pizza (we took Diana's favorite because I knew the others would bring pizza that I liked). We played pictionary, M&M color game, and What If...Then. Then I learned things about my friends that I should just not know. It was a good time. We didn't leave until after 11pm (yes, we are party animals). The kids stayed home and seemed to be good while we were gone.

Link me up

Hillary has officially withdrawn from the presidential race and is going to put her full weight behind Obama. I do not know if he can win, but it is worth the try.

I know that prices are going up, but paying over $6,000 for a watermelon is crazy! And, who knew there was such thing as a black watermelon?

Not only is Apple trying to beat the Blackberry. But the Nintendo DS as well. There are two DS's in my family and we love them. They are very cool. Apple does have the touch-screen and the motion down, so maybe. I just do not think Apple's price will be where it needs to be to really win market share.

Check out the numbers on how often and what consoles are being used for video games. I do not think it is right. Everyone I know is getting a Wii. One other thing to note is where are all these other adults getting time to play 20+ days a month? I play our Wii maybe once a month.

I knew that stupid horse would not win today. I should have called my shot! I did tell the eye doctor today though. If you want to verify this let me know, I will get you the number to the doctor.

Me and Chloe made our flight reservations home from Sacramento this summer. We will come home on the 19th (Saturday) of July. The flight was only $69, and going only one way means it will cost us only $159. Pretty good. Glad to get these before ticket prices really go up.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Semi Pro

Will Farrell. Basketball. Woody Harrelson. Movie. Stupid. Could not stand it. Only time I laughed was becuase of how stupid it was. DO NOT WASTE YOUR TIME WITH THIS MOVIE! I cannot beleive this movie even got made! Who gives people money to do this? It stumps me, and then people wonder why no one goes to see movies.

Missing LOST

This is the first week without a LOST and boy do I miss it. There is quite a wait until we get another new LOST too. I am in LOST withdrawal, and I am not happy about. Why can't there be a new LOST every week?

Reward Time

Chloe got straight A's at school (5 A+'s) and that means she gets a reward. Chloe and I will be going to Sacramento this summer to hang at my sister's house. It will be a good time. Chloe worked hard to get to her grades so I think it is great that she can get rewarded. Jordan did not quite get his grades where they needed to be, so he will not be going on the trip. There won't be any punishments for his grades, but there won't be any rewards for him either.

The current plan is me and Chloe drive with my sister to Sacramento (she will be in town for the family reunion this summer). Chloe and I will stay in Sacramento for a couple days and then fly home. We will hit the Jelly Belly factory as well as anything else Sacramento has (does Sac have anything else?)

Last Day of School

Today was the last day of school for the kids. It was a full-day (we thought it was a half). The kids were very bored and they mostly sat around. There was an assembly where both kids won awards. The kids won more awards in their individual classes. After we picked the kids up from school we went to Leatherby's for some lunch and an ice cream treat. It was good. I like Leatherby's.

New Roblyer

My older brother had a baby (well, actually his wife did). It is a boy. 10 pounds. 10 FREAKING pounds. 10 pounds is not a baby, it is a paperweight, or a rock. Not a baby. 21 inches long, too. That thing is HUGE! I have pictures but I will not post them without my brother's OK. Also, they are looking for "C" names. If you know any post them and I will get them to him. I like Chet - same as the IT operations manager.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Pathfinder v2

I did something cool. I took off/removed the running boards from the new Pathfinder to help Diana get in and out of it. All by myself by the way. I did not even have to call anyone for help. The whole job took about an hour and was fairly easy. The running boards were lighter than I expected, but the brackets that held the boards onto the car were huge. The whole thing was only 24 bolts. Sorry no picture of the car without the running boards - maybe tomorrow.

What the HECK...over

Debuting the new name of the blog "What the heck...over." This has become the tag line of choice for me and people that hang out with me (it is taking over Burton Group). You should all start saying it. I do have to give a shout out to Dave who is the first person that I ever heard say "What the heck...over!"

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

L to the I to the N to the K to the S

Fo' shizzle!

Now that Barack is the nominee, what does it mean? Can he beat McCain? Can the country really unite behind him? I just do not think he has the complete package to win in November. I will vote for him, but there are many people will not, just because of his skin color.

Want an iPod touch (like me)? Buy a qualifying Apple product and get one for FREE! I say just go for it.

I like Bill Simmons on ESPN and he is a huge Boston homer. I can not believe the ESPN let him run this column in the magazine, but they did.

I hope to take this flight in October, but I probably will not get the firetrucks and the appetizers before getting on.

I like the blackberry (you have been reading haven't you?). It seems as if the secret is out of the bag. If you want to know about the next iPhone, click here.

This is a little scary. Very Minority Report.

Chinese Program

Friday night we went to a Chinese Cultural Program at West High. It was a bunch of first-year high school students that were showing all they had learned. There was also a Chinese dragon dance that was pretty cool. The best part of the program was that the kids got extra credit for going and it moved Chloe up to an A in Chinese. Jordan's grade is also moving up and we will see where he ends up. Only two days left of school (the kids are psyched). Here is a picture of the Chinese dragon. He was moving pretty fast so the picture might be a little blurry.

New Pathfinder

We got a new Pathfinder Monday night. It is silver. It is just like our old Pathfinder. This one has less miles (about 4,000), BOSE upgraded stereo, sun roof (the kids love it), and best of all, this one has 4 wheel drive so we will be able to get around in the winter. I am happy that this is done and look forward to me getting a new car at some point. Here is a picture of it:

LOST finale

You all know the ending of LOST this season, but do you know about the alternate endings. Here you go:

Yard Work

A few days ago my rose bushes looked like this:

Now they look like this:

Nice, huh?

My yard is also a very nice green and weed free (for now). Hopefully I can keep this going for the rest of the summer. All I know is that it makes my wife happy.