July 31, 2008

Good Eats.

I haven't eaten in restaurants this much in my life. I've been eating breakfast, lunch and dinner at various places, some of them good. Some of them bad. I thought I would give you all a run down on the places I've eaten at.

1) Joe's Crab Shack. Pretty good seafood... for the middle of the plain states! We enjoyed it. Nice decor, the wait staff was nice. In fact our waitress was also from Illinois.

2)Mexicali Border Cafe. This place looks like a hole in the wall, but it has some great food! They are reasonably priced. The best part was the salsa. I'm not sure if they make their own or if they buy it, but they have some of the greatest salsa I've ever had.

3) The Hideaway. They have some great Pizza. I had one that was called "Big Country". It was topped with pepperoni, Canadian bacon, polish sausage (Kielbasa), hamburger, mozzarella and cheddar cheese! It was a damn good pizza.

4) Jason's Deli. This place is a bit of a conundrom. It's a sandwich and salad shop. They make some pretty good sandwiches and have a nice salad bar. But they have some of the rudest people working there. Think of the soup nazi from Seinfeld. They don't have a menu over the counter, so when I walked up they asked me for my order. I didn't know because I was trying to figure out what they had. Now I wasn't even at the counter, I was a couple of feet back. There was no one else waiting. They lady told me to stand back from the ordering area until I knew what I wanted. They are very strict in their ordering policies. I've eaten there a couple of times despite this. They make a good sandwich, they ARE fast and it's less than five minutes from work.

5)Kilkenny's Irish Pub. They have some great Irish food and a wonderful atmosphere. This is probably my favorite place I've eaten at down here so far. The best part is that it's very reasonably priced. Expect to pay much more if you get a beer or two.

6) The Elephant Bar Restaurant. It is an interesting themed restaurant. It has an African influence in the design and decor. Yet the food is mostly of a southeast Asian influence. They had a great crispy teriyaki chicken. The waitress we had did seem to ignore us, but the food was pretty good.

7)In The Raw. This is a sushi joint. When I asked where the best sushi in town was, this place was recommended by two different people. It's one of those trendy joints with the modern art deco designs and loud modern dance club music playing. The waitress we had was horrible. The hostess was rude as well as the manager. The wait staff ignored us, messed up our orders, it took forever to get the food. One of the Employee-M ordered a sprite and at one point the wait staff came around and topped her Sprite off with water. The sushi wasn't bad, but I've had much better. From the time we arrived until the time we left it was 2 hours.

All the other places we went to were fast food joints or major national chains. Now I'm going to have plenty of time to try other restaurants down here between now and October. So if you are familiar with any other restaurants down here and recommend some, please leave it in the comments.

Posted by Contagion at 07:21 PM | Comments (8) | TrackBack

July 30, 2008

Kudu Premium Lager

Tonight I was able to find another beer brewed here in Oklahoma. It is Kudu Premium Lager Beer by the Huebert Brewing Company in Oklahoma City, OK.

Sorry for the picture quality, it was taken with my webcam.

We have our standard 12 oz brown bottle. There is a dark green label with KUDU in bold white letters at the top. In the middle there is a picture of a KUDU. I only know what it is because right below the picture there is a little history, ďKudu Premium lager is named after the shy, but handsomest and second largest African antelope, the Kudu. Kudu Premium lager is a smooth naturally dry and full-bodied lager beer. After you have had kudu lager you will not be as shy as a kudu!Ē

There is a pale golden yellow/straw coloring to it. Light passes through easily. There is no cloudiness to it. You can watch as carbonation bubbles flow up through the beer as the develop into columns. When poured I received a quarter inch thick head that quickly dissipated into a film on the top of the glass. There is some lacing, but not a lot.

The smell is an interesting combination of floral hops, a wine-like grape scent and something that gave it the smell of melted butter. The scent reminded me of melted butter used for baking cookies. The taste was of a mild spicy hop. There is a ginger like flavor to it. Maybe it was the melted butter scent, but it reminded me of ginger snaps. Itís not a bad taste, just kind of interesting. Itís unlike anything Iíve had in a beer in the past. Just like the label suggests there is a dry finish to it. The aftertaste is interesting and difficult to describe, but itís not bad.

IT is a light bodied beer with a heavier than average carbonation to it. The carbonation bites on the tongue, but doesnít make it hard to drink. Honestly this is a very smooth beer that is easy to drink and goes down easy.

Iím not sure if this is something I would go out of my way for, but it is definitely not bad. The taste is unusual and I may have to ship a six pack of this home with me just to let some of my loyal and devoted readers try it. It really is not a bad beer and Iím rather enjoying it tonight. Iím giving it a 5.5 out of ten.

Posted by Contagion at 08:23 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

July 29, 2008

It's like an Alfred Hitchcock movie!

I've been told that all of my posts regarding Oklahoma have been depressing and kind of a downer. So I'm changing my topic for tonight... oh it still involves Tulsa, but a different aspect of it.

Every night as the sun goes down a massive amount of birds comes out and swarms around downtown Tulsa. When I say there is a massive amount of birds, I mean they number in the thousands! It's kind of freaky. They fly around, swarming the buildings. The trees are loaded with them almost bending under the weight of the plague of birds. I'm not sure what kind of birds they are, but it's really disturbing. They are loud. The are everywhere. They crap on everything.

I tried to take a picture, but I only had my picture phone and it didn't turn out too well. So I tried to use the video feature on my phone. All I got was this not so great clip, but it gives you an idea.

It's actually really disturbing. I'm not sure why they are there, I don't know what they are up to, but I'm really glad there is a parking deck for me to park in and a covered walkway so that I don't have to run outside so I don't get covered in bird poop.

Sorry about the sound, I don't know what the hell was causing that.

Posted by Contagion at 08:47 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

That's where I'd go.

I didn't realize that T1G moved to Texas and opened a daycare center. 5-Year-Old Leaves Day Care, Goes to Hooters. T1G just wanted some hot wings and couldn't leave the other kids unattended... and he seemed like a really smart 5 year old.

Not that I'm making excuses.

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July 28, 2008


After getting up and the butt crack of way too early, I jumped my turbulence strewn flight to Tulsa. Folks, let me tell you somethign right now. If you've ever flown out of O'Hare, you know it's a nightmare. Tulsa Int Airport is the exact opposite. The people here are polite, friendly, helpful and actually are civil... completely unlike O'Hare.

When I get into the office, I check to see if the access to the programs I requested last week finally went through. Which it hadn't. After making a dozen phone calls, sending out a couple dozen e-mails and then finally reading someone the riot act, access was granted and we were able to get work done. I'm supposed to finish up tomorrow, and that may actually catch me up to only 2 days behind schedule!

That's good news.

However, they pretty much confirmed I'm going to be down here off and on through September. They are going to let me stay home for two weeks, and then send me back for another 3-4 weeks. So all of you Oklahomians (Oklahomites?), If we weren't able to get together you still have a chance.

Posted by Contagion at 08:11 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

July 27, 2008

The weekend is over.

I didn't really do anything this weekend. After being gone so long, I decided to just stay home and hang out with the family. Actually I was just trying to get some resemblance of normalcy. I know the next couple of weeks are going to be really hectic and I'm not sure how things are going to go. Right now I'm planning on spending a lot of time in the office to try to get everything caught up.

I'm bound and determined to get this job wrapped up as quickly as possible.

I know this project is probably going to last until the end of the year, but a lot of it should be able to be handled out of my office. Once I get to that point I think I can start doing my job out of the Rockford office again. Right now it looks like I might be returning to Rockford sometime between the 9th and 15th, but I'll probably be heading back down to Oklahoma sometime around Labor Day.

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July 26, 2008

When good umbrellas go bad.

Here's another video that is funny in that haha, it' happened to someone else kind of way. Just keep watching the moving umbrellas.

More videos from the "Contagious" channel at Heavy.com

Posted by Contagion at 11:25 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

I wonder if she learned her lesson?

The basis of this is that the guy was going to teach his wife firearm safety. He told her not to touch the weapon until he got back. She obviously didn't listen to him. I know this prank was mean, cruel and possibly dangerous, but it's absolutely hilarious.

More videos from the "Contagious: Stupid People" channel at Heavy.com

Posted by Contagion at 11:18 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Hedgehog Launch

Nedd to kill some time, maybe you are in an airport waiting for a flight, or just stranded in a hotel in Tulsa, OK with nothing to do. How about playing Hedgehog Launch?

The whole point of the game is to launch a hedgehog into space. In order to do so you need to collect money in order to upgrade your launcher, bands, rockets, parachutes, etc.

Posted by Contagion at 11:09 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

I'm the Batman!

Last week I took the family to see The Dark Knight prior to my leaving for Oklahoma. We all enjoyed the movie and thought it was pretty good. So when I saw this parody today, I just had to share it. Don't watch it if you haven't seen the movie, it may contain some spoilers that aren't in the trailer.

Posted by Contagion at 09:08 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

July 25, 2008

Week one coming to an end

Well, week one is about in the books. I'm heading in a little later today because we are traveling late into the evening and they don't need use until later this morning. We are about 3.5 days behind. Mostly due to system issues and conflicts with the training department. Training double booked people in classes.

So far this isn't going too well, but things did start shaping up yesterday. We were able to actually get some of the training of the new employees done and all the access seems to be available.

With Ktreva's grandfather dieing I was sure that I was going to have to end up leaving down here and miss more training time that would set me back even further. I'm not sure why, but they scheduled his memorial on August 2nd, so I'm not going to miss any time.

I'm still working to get this wrapped up in time for me to be able to come back for the Galesburg Heritage festival re-enactment I participate in. I at least want to get home for the weekend.

The good news is that I'm flying home tonight to spend the weekend with the family. I really miss Ktreva and the boys. It'll be good to see them again.

Posted by Contagion at 07:33 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

July 23, 2008

Miner Mishap

Since Iím in Oklahoma Iím going out of my way to find beers that are brewed either here in the OK or ones in the surrounding states (Texas, Arkansas, Kansas) that I canít find at home. It took me four stops in two days to find one, and then I ended up having to ask a local that Iím training in order to find a place that sold something other than big brands. Finally I found a pretty good store that had a decent selection. Tonight Iím going to be reviewing Miner Mishap by the Choc Beer Company in Krebs, Oklahoma.

Miner Mishap.jpg
Sorry for the crappy photo, I had to use my webcam on the laptop to take it.

We have our normal brown 12 oz bottle. There is a two tone picture of two miners carrying another miner between them in what appears to be a... mine. The name of the beer is in that late Eighteenth century western script. At the bottom they state this is a black lager.

There is a dark brown color to it. Light passes through it, but you canít see what is on the other side of the glass clearly. Itís dark enough that I canít tell if there is any cloudiness to it. The head was about quarter of an inch thick and consisted of tiny tan bubbles that gave it a thick and creamy appearance. It slowly faded to a thin film on the top of the beer. There is a bit of lacing on the side of the glass, but not much.

It has a nice roasted chocolate and caramel malt sent to it, just as the label describes. There is a touch of a coffee scent to it as well. You can also detect just a hint of hops. The smell is a pretty good indicator of the taste. The chocolate and roasted malts really come through. There is a slight mineral water taste to it. It finishes with a mild hoppiness. As the beer starts to warm, the hop flavors start to be more noticeable.

This is a medium bodied beer. The carbonation bites a little on the tongue.

They advertise this as schwarzbier, but it almost has more of a porter taste to it. Over all it isnít a bad beer. I found it rather pleasant to drink. I give it 6 out of 10.

Posted by Contagion at 09:04 PM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

Goodbye Jack.

Ktreva's grandfather passed away yesterday. It's never easy when a loved one dies, but right now is even harder. I really wish I was back home and able to comfort and help her. Unfortunately I'm 600 miles away. I completely feel like a failure as a husband.

Her grandfather was the only in-law I had that liked me. Whenever we would visit Jack and I would spend hours talking. This man lead a long and interesting life. He fought in World War 2 and would tell me stories about that and the difficulties of his childhood growing up an orphan. It was just this last December listening to his stories that I realized that he fought with the 101st Airborne, Easy Company. Yes, Band of Brothers fans, the same unit. He made all the jumps and even was at Bastogne. I was hoping to hear more of his stories this year at Thanksgiving.

Jack was also a pilot. He owned a recreation P-51 Mustang and would fly it for airshows. He was proud of that plane. I remember the first time he showed it to me at one of the airshows. It was a beautiful craft that was well maintained.

I liked Jack. He was a smart man with a great sense of humor. Unfortunately since they lived 12 hours away, we didn't get to see him as much as we would have liked. It was a situation we couldn't remedy without moving closer.

Even though he didn't fly during World War 2; he did serve, honor and fight for his country, and he was an avid pilot. I feel this is appropriate for him:

Missing MAn.jpg
The missing man formation as done with P-51 mustangs.

God speed Jack. Thank you for everything.

Posted by Contagion at 05:57 AM | Comments (9) | TrackBack

July 22, 2008

Declining even further.

Okay, so my bright idea this morning worked. I was able to get the IT problem resolved and it looked like I was going to actually start making process. Then it happened, System Crash! That's right the program I needed to use crashed early this morning and we weren't able to get any further along on the project.

I am now 1.5 days behind schedule and Not only are they talking about extending my stay, but possibly letting me come home for a couple of weeks and then returning for the month of September when a lot of the system issues are resolved. I'm going to be here still for the next three weeks, it's just they may send me back the last week of August and keep me down here for a while.

BTW, to all of you that gave me advice on coming down here, both good and bad, you all forgot one important factor. YOU DIDN'T TELL ME IT'S LIKE THE GATES OF HELL HOT DOWN HERE! I'm wearing wool suits in a climate with a heat index of 103! I'm tired of my testicles sticking to my legs. Thankfully I can set the thermostat in my hotel room to a comfortable 61 degrees. Then I can strip nekked and cool off.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have to take Employee-M and her counterpart from another office to the mall to go shopping. It has to be me, because the company won't authorize a second driver on the vehicle. It's part of the job is trying to accommodate them on this trip as well.

Yea... this is torture.

Posted by Contagion at 04:43 PM | Comments (6) | TrackBack


Last night between tossing and turning, I had an epiphany! I think I may have figured out how to get the access problem corrected. When I get to the office this morning I need to make some phone calls.

Lets see if I'm as good as they think I am.

Posted by Contagion at 06:17 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

July 21, 2008

Not a good start

I woke up bright and early this morning. My plan was to hit the gym and exercise a little. Well that plan worked, what didn't was the muscle cramping because I'm a lazy SOB and rarely work out. I ended up cutting my workout short. After the gym time I came back upstairs and got ready for work.

When I get to the office I spent the first hour answering questions about this transition that I'm overseeing. That part went really well. I had all the answers they wanted and I was able to calm their nerves. EXCELLENT! There is nothing worse than having to do a transition like this with the new management being skittish about the changes.

After that I stared the roll out to the management and I hit a glitch. None of them have access to the programs that they need to handle the new business line. Their access is all screwed up. I spent most of the day walking to the IT department in Chicago trying to get them to understand the importance of them expediting this process. Of course IT was fighting me tooth and nail. They can't help because the people that are needing the access are in Okla-farooking-homa.

No matter how much I explained that they were working Illinois business and couldn't do this work with out the access and programs they just couldn't get it through their giant swollen noggins filled with all the tips and tricks for Halo 3 and daydreams of not just meeting a girl, but actually maybe smelling her one day. Yes, I'm a little bitter. At one point I told the mentally challenged, should have been a stain on the sheet, chuckle head that if I was in Rockford, I would drive to his office just to clearly explain what the issue is by drawing him crayon pictures. Yea, that was toward the end of the day after spending 6 hours working with them.

Needless to say on day one I'm already 2/3 day behind on what needs to be done and it looks like tomorrow may be a complete waste as well. The sad part is that I worked up until 7:00PM tonight trying to get everything in place. Right now I'm frustrated, annoyed and just plain tired. This does not bode well for me.

And to kick it off they director of the area was talking about promotional opportunities again. Once I got down here I saw that there are indeed some big promotional opportunities. I just really hope they don't try to "encourage" me to put in for one of them.

Now, if you'll excuse me, on my way back from dinner I stopped and picked up a six pack. I think I'm going to sit back, drink a couple and try to get some sleep tonight. The bed was too soft and I slept like crap last night.

Posted by Contagion at 08:38 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

July 20, 2008

Here I am, in Oklahoma!

I boarded the bus to leave Rockford at 1 PM today and was able to get into O'Hare by 2:40PM. I was able to get through security rather quickly. I did make one faux pass, I didn't take my lap top out of my case. I wasn't aware that I had to... now I know. I've never traveled with one before.

I have officially decided that O'Hare is the most jacked up airport I've ever flown out of. I want to know what mental midget came up with the layout for this freaking maze? It absolutely is staggering the way they have the gates and concourses laid out. Thank god for a mobile GPS system or I would have been completely lost. Oh, and I thought they had free WI-FI at O'Hare. Nope, they don't. You can get on to check the status of flights, but if you want to get to the internet you need to buy time. Yea, that wasn't about to happen. It's not that I'm cheap, even though I could squeeze a nickle until the buffalo farts, it's that I'm not paying $12.00 to use the internet for 30 minutes.

We got there in plenty of time for our flight, we should have only had to wait for about 20 minutes before boarding. Then they announced they we delaying our flight. Not for weather, not for mechanical problems, but because the First Officer on our flight was flying in a plane from Philadelphia and isn't due to arrive until 4:45PM. Our flight was scheduled to depart at 3:45 PM. United must have had a screw loose to make that kind of scheduling error. Apparently they realized their mistake and found another First Officer to take his place, so we only left 30 minutes behind schedule.

We arrive in Tulsa to a very vacant airport. It's nice, clean and was easy to maneuver through. There wasn't a huge crowd of people you had a fight past. My traveling companion, Employee-M, and I had to laugh when we got the rental car. Apparently my company thought I would love to drive this Kia Rondo. It's like a clown car that I barely fit in. Not because I'm of noble girth, it's because I'm about 2 inches too tall for it. Employee-M nicknamed it "The Clown Car". Because even she, who is inches shorter than I am thought it was awfully small.

When we get to the hotel, we checked in easily enough. I get to my floor and I instantly notice that it smells like mold and mildew. Now, I'm staying at the DoubleTree in Downtown Tulsa. This is supposed to be a really nice hotel. When I get to my room it also smells like mold and mildew. So I go back down to the desk and tell them that it stinks really bad, they where very quick to change rooms for me. They explained that there was some kind of leak on the roof that when it rains hard it leaks all the way down to the third floor... and only the third floor.

Since we hadn't eaten since before noon, both Employee-M and I were hungry. We headed into town to get something to eat... at 7:30PM. We ended up going to Joe's Crab Shack and had a great dinner. I also received all the voice mails and text messages from those of you that called and texted me when I turned my phone back on. Unfortunately it was late, and I didn't feel like responding tonight.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to sleep.

Posted by Contagion at 09:33 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

July 19, 2008

It could happen.

What IF Google ruled the World? Would it look like this? Make sure to look at all of the pictures.

Posted by Contagion at 10:06 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Look a likes

Here's an interesting blog. Over at Totally Looks Like they match celebrity photo's with other images they look like, be it other people or animals.

Even though I never really thought of it, but John Kerry does kind of look like Herman Munster.

Posted by Contagion at 09:59 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Bringing back the classics

For all of you Muppets fans, here's Beeker doing Ode to Joy.

Posted by Contagion at 09:52 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Star Rebellion

Here's a fun little game that will suck you in for hours. It's a tower defense style game that appears to be loosely based on the Star Wars genre. The original trilogy, not the new one. Go try Star Rebellion if you want to have some fun, and loose a couple hours of your life.

Posted by Contagion at 09:49 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

July 18, 2008

Party Time!

Bruce is coming to pick me up in a couple of hours to head down to Fritz's before I leave for Tulsa. After we get a good base going on at Fritz's we're going to head back to my house where some other friends are going to join us. The plan is that if this is a permanent move for me, one last drunken huzzah in Northern Illinois.

I'm thinking that with the new lap top and web cam, I might run a cord out to the back yard and set up a live video channel later so any of you that want to stop by and see what's going on can. Then again, I may just be a little too "socially lubricated" to get it set up.

UPDATE: Forget the live webcam, I tried to figure out how to set it up and folks, it's just beyond me.

Posted by Contagion at 03:23 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

July 17, 2008

Blue Goat Doppelbock

Itís time for another random beer review. Tonight Iím reviewing a beer that I found next to Dragonís Milk at the store. Itís Blue Goat Doppelbock by the New Holland Brewing Company in Holland, Michigan. This is the same company that makes Dragonís Milk.

Blue Goat Doppelbock.jpg

It comes in a 1 pint, 6 oz brown bottle, thatís 22 oz for those of you that donít want to do the math. In blue ink silk screened on the bottle is the name of the beer at the top and a picture of a goatís head. There is a long story about the beer on it. There is nothing on the bottle that tells you what the Alcohol By Volume is, but after some research I discovered it is 7.5%, which is rather respectable.

When poured into a pilsner glass it has a nice dark brown color to it. There are some orange highlights when held up. Light passed through it, but you couldnít make out images on the other side. A nice, thick tan head formed. It faded into a film on the top of the glass after a couple of minutes. There was some lacing on the side of the glass.

The scent is a combination of caramel and toffee. There were some nutty undertones to it. The smell was pleasant and inviting. It enticed the drinker to take a sip. There was not a hint of alcohol to it, which is kind of surprising with a 7.5% ABV. The taste was a pleasantly mild combination of caramel and toffee malts. It didnít have as strong of a malt flavor that you normally get with a doppelbock. There is a slight grainy/bread like finish to it. Surprisingly you canít taste the alcohol. The aftertaste is pleasant and unobtrusive.

This is a medium bodied beer with some strong characteristics. There is a silkiness to it that coats the tongue, mouth and throat. The carbonation is on the lighter side of beer, but it fits the beer perfectly. It drinks very easily and could be dangerous on a hot summer day.

Overall this is a really good beer. Easy to drink, but watch out for drinking too much too quickly. I donít know if I would actually call it a doppelbock, it seems to be a bit light for one. I was pleasantly surprised by this beer, I give it an 8 out of 10.

Posted by Contagion at 07:12 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

July 16, 2008

1554 Enlightend Black Ale

Tonight Iím reviewing the last surviving beer of the beer tasting. There were others but we didnít have any left overs. Iím reviewing 1554 enlightened Black Ale by the New Belgium Brewing Company at Fort Collins, CO. This was brought by Labgirl, Shadoglareís date.

1554 black ale.jpg

The bottle is a 12 oz brown bottle. This one however is specially cast with a neck band that has the name of the brewing company on it. The label is red with a blue square that has green ivy on it. There is a picture of a snifter of beer sitting on a barrel. The name of the beer is in black lettering toward the bottom of the picture.

This beer has a beautiful dark brown color with a reddish background to it. It poured a thin tan head that dissipated into a film. There was some lacing that stayed on the side of the glass, but not much.

There is a nice roasted malt scent to it. You can also detect a slight a dark dried fruit scent, like raisins and molasses. A slight earthy undertone is also noticed. The taste is a mix of roasted chocolate and coffee malts. There is a hint of nut to the taste. It has a slightly bitter finish and aftertaste.

It is a medium bodied beer. There is some creaminess to it that coats the mouth, but not a lot. The carbonation level is decent.

At the beer tasting this was one of the beers that no one hated, and a couple of people really liked. Over all itís a pretty good beer, but I could see how drinking it could get filling after a while. At the beer tasting I gave it a 4.5, and Iím going to stick with that rating, 4.5 out of 10.

Posted by Contagion at 07:34 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Today should be a National Holiday.

Today is Ktreva's birthday. She turned a very beautiful and sexy 29. I'm trying to make today very special for her. She's not really liking this whole Oklahoma situation. Even the best case scenario that I'm back in two weeks doesn't make her happy. Since she is really upset over the whole thing I want today to be extremely special for her.



Please, go over to The Reality Ranch and wish her a Happy Birthday today. She deserves it. Heck, she should be nominated for sainthood just for marrying me.

Thank you.


Posted by Contagion at 07:53 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

July 15, 2008

The time is getting closer

Today has been filled with ups and downs. I learned more about my upcoming predicament, aka the Okla-homie trip coming up. It seems each day the news is worse and worse. I was pretty sure on Monday that I would be able to get everything done with in three weeks, but now I'm not so sure. We'll see what the rest of the week brings me.

After work tonight I went with Graumagus down to Tammi's place to grab some furniture she has decided to part with. Grau took much of it for his new bachelor pad and I took the golden throne and foot stool. I agreed to this before the whole Oklahoma trip came up. I still want it, now I'm just wondering if it's going to be making the move out of state anyway.

After grabbing the furniture from Tammi's we all headed to Fritz's so that Tammi and I could have one last beer together down there. It was nice talking to her, and I'm sure going to miss her. Either way yo0u look at it, she's leaving the state, I'm leaving the state... not really boding well for a reunion.

After a couple of quick beers, we returned and unloaded the furniture into the respective houses.

I think I'm going to go to sleep now.

Today really made me think about my situation and I'm not happy about it. I mean things could be much, much worse... but damn.

Posted by Contagion at 09:35 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

July 14, 2008

Life is going way too fast.

Well, first let me state that I'm writing this post from my new lap top. I went out and bought a lap top in preparation for my upcoming and unavoidable trip to Oklahoma. Ktreva and I discussed it and we decided that not only will this help me while I'm gone, but it will help reduce the tension and stress in the house fighting over who gets to use the computer next and when. With two we can both use one or the other at the same time. The lap top is primarily mine, but when she goes on trips to Chicago for work she can take it with her to use after hours.

This last weekend I spent with some good friends. I will have a full blown post about this past weekend sometime later this week. It was good seeing all of my friends again. It was nice being able to talk to them about the upcoming trip. Especially since this may be the last time I see many of them for a long time.

Now if you'll excuse me, I need to go finish loading all of the software on here that I use on a regular basis.

Posted by Contagion at 07:27 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

July 11, 2008

Off to Theatiki

Ktreva and I are off for a kid free weekend of re-enacting and fun. We are heading to the Gathering on the Theatiki in Bourbonnais, IL. This may be my last re-enactment for a long time, so I'm going to make sure that I do it right. With this whole Oklahoma thing I'm not sure I'm going to be able to do any re-enactments. And I don't think they do any for the time period I portray down there.

Contrary to what Wil keeps saying, I'm not really wanting to portray wild west or 19th century mountain man/buffalo hunter. Since I don't know all that is going to happen yet, I really want to make sure I get the most out of this weekend as I can.

Now of course they are calling for Storms tomorrow.... figures.

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July 09, 2008

Dirty Helen

I chose tonightís beer because not only was it brought to my Beer Tasting, but it was brought to the Four B Party at Wilís. (Beer, Brats, Blue Grass and Butt JuiceÖ Donít ask). Noah brought this to my beer tasting, it is Dirty Helen Brown Ale by the Barley Island Brewing Company in Noblesville, IN.

Dirty Helen.jpg

It came a 12 oz brown bottle. The label is brown with a 1920ís style drawing of a lady on it, assumable Dirty Helen.The name of the beer is across the bottom of the label in yellow letters.

It pours a lovely dark reddish brown color. There is a very thin tan head on it that fades quickly to a film on the top of the beer. There is no lacing on the side of the glass.

The aroma is a combination of nuts and caramel malts. There is a slight sweetness to it that is rather interesting. The smell and flavor are about the same. It tastes like a combination of nuts and caramel malts. There is a bitter finish to it and a slight taste of floral hops. The bitterness lasts into the aftertaste.

This is a medium bodied beer that is easy to drink. There is a decent amount of carbonation in it.

This was a beer that didnít do too well at the Beer Tasting. A lot of people scored this one really low. It actually isnít that bad, Iíve had worse, much worse. Itís not something I would go out of the way for, but honestly if you drink it on a fresh pallet, itís not bad at all. I give it 4.5 out of 10.

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Okla-Homa... Where Contagion comes whipping down the plains! UPDATED!

I just received word this morning that my trip to Oklahoma has been confirmed. Right now it's just temporary, nothing perminant. I'll be leaving on July 28th. For those of you that know my schedules... yes, yes that means exactly what you are thinking.

UPDATE: 10:45 AM I just found out that I'm actually going to be leaving on July 20th. It could last as long as until mid October depending on how things go. IE, the better of a job I do, the quicker this could be over with. There was talk again about this turning into a promotional opportunity. All of you know I want out of Rockford in the worst kind of way, but this is NOT what I wanted. I just wanted to move out of the city.

As for my re-enacting... That may be put on hold for a while. You all know how much that pains me. The worst part is that there could be a 3 week period I go with out getting to see the family at all.

Also, I don't own a lap top so blogging may become non-existant. However, if anyone knows were I can get a good/cheap lap top in the next 10 days, let me know.

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July 08, 2008

Oklahoma here I come?

I returned from vacation to find out that my company maybe (75% chance or better) relocating me to Oklahoma. We have a large portion of our business that is being transfered to one of our offices there and they may be shipping me with it.

Ummmm, I'm not sure I'm completely liking this idea.

Why me? Because I have the most flexibility out of everyone in the office. Ktreva works for the same company and her position lets her work out of any office the company owns, thus it's no big deal. Add the fact that I am the most knowledgeable member of the management staff on this book of business. I've also turned around three areas I've worked in and handled four major projects in the last year successfully. My track record speaks for itself, I get results.

Now this is starting off as a temporary position. It could be just a couple of weeks or months. However, today they tell me that if all goes well I have the opportunity for advancement and relocation. Do I have a choice for the temporary period... no. The permanent part? Yea, I could always show a complete lack of motivation and drive.

Maybe I just need a new job all together.

Either way, any of my readers around the Tulsa Oklahoma area... You may have a visitor coming your way.

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July 07, 2008

Golf, Water Slides and beer.

Even though our vacation didnít go the way we had originally planed, we still had a damn good one. On Monday we wanted to get together with lovely, talented and charming Tammi of Tammiís world. Sheís up and leaving us Northern Illinois folks for greener pastures. I donít blame her; it just sucks as she makes the best Mexican Manicotti. That and I love to sit and talk with her. I know Ktreva feels the same way, about the talkingÖ not the manicotti. First we went to lunch at Der Rathskeller. After lunch Ktreva and Tammi went clothes shopping and I took the boys to Volcano Falls for some mini-golf and go-carts. Clone was big enough to drive the kiddie carts by himself this year. He was THRILLED!

On Tuesday we took the boys to Coco Key Water Resort. We have two water resorts in Rockford, Magic Waters and Coco Key. The boys chose to which one we went. Coco Key is an indoor water park and the boys figured that it would be less crowded. Boopie also figured Clone would have more fun as itís more geared to younger kids. The whole family had fun. We spent over 6 hours there swimming, riding the slides, floating in the lazy river or just sitting in the hot tub.

On Wednesday we loaded up the family and headed to Macomb, IL. Ktreva had been asking since weíve been married to go to Macomb. For those of you that donít know, I graduated from Western Illinois University. I tell stories about it all the time. Ktreva wanted to see where these stories took place. We drove around and I showed them the residence halls I stayed in, took them into the student union, showed them some of the houses that held parties we frequently attended. ETC.

WIU Wetzel Hall'

Here the family is posing next to the sign for Wetzel Hall. Itís the dorm I lived in as a freshman and sophomore. That night I took them to my favorite Pizza place for dinner, Aurelioís. The pizza there was just as good as I remembered. After dinner the family wanted to see a movie so we went and saw Hancock.

Thursday before we left we ate lunch at a place on the Macomb Square that advertised Chicken Lips. Ktreva asked me what they where, but since this restaurant was new since I attended college, I had no idea. We decided to stop in for lunch. If you want to know what Chicken lips areÖ youíll just have to go to Chickís on the Square and get some for yourself.

After leaving Macomb I took the family to some of the places I visited on my canoe trip last month, then we went to Wil and Redís place for the weekend. At this point I really canít go into too many details. As soon as we had our tents set up, Wil started pouring beer down my throat. Between him and Noah they forced me to open and drink 4 of the growlers of Carlyle beer I brought. The only reason I didnít get into the other two is because Ktreva reserved a growler of the Irish red for herself and one of the growlers of stout was for Petey. After the growlers were gone we went through a couple of cases of beer.

On the Fourth of July, Wil hosted a Beer Tasting for some of his friends and family. It turned into quite an affair. I really wish I could go into more details, but the details get really fuzzy. I do know that at one point I was yelling at someone over their review of a beer. Three of the members of the Blue Grass Band Noah belongs to showed up and played some music. Boopie and Clone set off some fireworks. And then a bunch of Noahís drunken friends showed up. Good times, good times.

The family and I ended up staying until Sunday. I was figuring Wil and Red would have booted us off of their property by then, but they encouraged us to stick around. We had a couple more cases of surplus beer and some surplus food that needed eating. So we hung around, the boys played on rock piles and we were able to visit and talk with good friends we donít get to see too often. It was one hell of a good weekend.

Although I do want to know how Noahís band did on Saturday night. They had a gig at a local bar with other bands. The only problem is that the other bands were all metal bands. I waited up Saturday night for stories, but he just never came home.

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