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Between 40 & 50

The ramblings of a middle-aged man

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Brain Dropping

Yet Another Pokémon Go Update

Yes, I’m still playing that infernal game, Pokémon Go. I’m currently a level 27 trainer, nearly halfway to being level 28. To date I’ve registered 123 different Pokémon to my Pokédex, caught 3,750 Pokémon, evolved 506 Pokémon, visited 4,058 PokéStops, hatched 224 eggs, and have walked 439 kilometers. And I’m nowhere near done yet!

In my first several posts about Pokémon Go, I complained quite a bit about Niantic’s (the game maker) poor product, but I still kept playing. I must admit that in Q4 of 2016, Niantic really pulled it together and turned Pokémon Go into a very nice game. Is it missing a few things? Sure, but they aren’t killers. I’d love to be able to battle other trainers straight up and trade Pokémon, but that doesn’t ruin the game for me. I can easily enjoy playing without those features.

There is one major stat, not listed above, that is the absolute key reason I’m still playing Pokémon Go and will continue to play.

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End of Year Work

I’m sitting at my desk this week leading up to Christmas without a single task to accomplish. Seriously! Every bit of work that needed to take place before the end of 2016 has already been done.

Think about it – all of the Executives are long gone, already enjoying their winter vacations. They’re off skiing or floating away on a sailboat somewhere. Any serious work that needed to be accomplished had to be done before they jetted off to their house in Steamboat or Vail. Think they’re checking emails off the coast of the St. Lucia? Doubtful!

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Gift Giving Gone Wrong

At work we had a departmental White Elephant gift exchange during our holiday party. It was tons of fun and presents were getting stolen left and right. One co-worker ended up opening something like 15 gifts that got stolen. The guy kept joking about his job being the “Official Package Opener.” A good time was had by all.

The party and gift exchange was a way to remove the pressure of having to purchase gifts for everyone or the management team. Everybody had a spending ceiling and nobody knew who would end up with any of the gifts. It’s a great way of reducing holiday stress. Or so I thought!

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Budgets Suck

Last night The Wife and I made a HUGE mistake. This is one of those things that no matter how hard we try, we can’t undo. We took a look at our 2016 budget and compared it to our actual expenses. While shocking, that wasn’t the worst thing we did. It got worse, much, much worse!

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I previously mentioned my recent tire issues. I finally had a chance to take the family truckster in to get the tires looked at and discovered that 3 of the four tires had nails in them. There is a TON of construction happening around town, so I can’t say that I’m completely surprised.

If I’m buying 3 new tires, I might as well get all four. The service place I use was able to cut me a great deal on new tires, so, all in I’m stuck with $340 worth of new rubber. The best selling point the guy could offer was that they’re run-flat tires. Hopefully I won’t have to test that feature out, but, knowing that the construction isn’t going away any time soon, it’s more than likely I will.

Ain’t life grand? Just what I wanted to do right before Christmas, blow $300+ on tires. Did I mention that my car is less than a year old? Can 2016 be over soon? I’m tire of getting my ass kicked.

Just booked a couples massage as a gift for the wife and I over my Christmas break. I love getting a massage, I always feel so funky afterward.

The part of the massage I don’t like is when they try to sell you the crap afterward. You’ve just experienced a small slice of heaven and the masseuse starts pimping oils and all sorts of other crap. It’s all overpriced too. No thanks, I don’t want a $75 bottle of massage oil. I just spent $200 on the massage, isn’t that enough you leech?

Apparently the place The Wife and I like to visit has decided that it’s not enough to pimp extras after the massage. When I called to set the appointment they started asking me if I wanted to “upgrade” my experience with different items. No thanks! I don’t need a custom robe or a special water bottle with their logo tacked on to the bill. I just want a frickin’ massage! How hard is that to accomplish?

Maybe I’m just getting too old, but this stuff is really starting to bug me. Give me my 50 minute massage and don’t try to sell me everything under the sun while I’m in there. If your water bottle is super cool, maybe I’ll be interested in buying it, but I’m definitely not purchasing it based on the description you give over the phone. Besides, why would I pay $50 for a water bottle with your logo on it when I can get one at Academy for $10 and no logo? Both water bottles do the exact same thing.

Now, if you want to give me your water bottle and pay me a small fee for me advertising your services & facility, I’m open to discussions.

West Texas A&M Tour

In early November The Girl and The Wife visited West Texas A&M University in Canyon, Texas. West Texas A&M has a very, very strong equine program and The Girl can earn a degree in
Agribusiness/Equine Industry and Business, which is her dream major. As such, WTAMU was easily #2 on The Girl’s list of prospective schools, right behind Texas A&M.

As with the summary from the Texas Tech visit, I did not attend this visit, so everything I’m posting is second hand information coming from The Wife and The Girl.

Per my usual, here are the  Top and Bottom takeaways from the visit:

Top 5/Bottom 5 from the West Texas A&M University Tour

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Tires Suck

Last night, after work, I get in my car and start the process of preparing to leave – buckle my seat belt, adjust the radio, etc. Next thing I know, someone is knocking on my passenger side window. The little old lady who parked next to me is urgently signaling that I roll down my window.

Doubtful that she’s a threat to my security, I dutifully roll down the passenger window. She tells me that my tire is going flat and that I need to fix it right away. She goes on to say that she thinks the building security office has an air tank I can use to fill it up for the drive home.

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Wife’s Company Holiday Party – Part 2

As previously mentioned (here and here), this past Friday night we hosted The Wife’s company’s holiday party.

In the latest post, I shared quite a bit about the trials and tribulations of getting all new decor for the house. As The Wife expected, her coworkers were suitably impressed with her efforts. I honestly have to say that the house looked spectacular on Friday night, both inside and out. The crazy expensive lights adorning our gutters made the house glow, while the new tree and interior items brought a unique holiday feel to each room. I’m still not happy about the expense, but the result was amazing.

Now for the down side, one person who attended. A few of The Wife’s coworkers can be a bit rough around the edges at times and that led to the most uncomfortable situation I’ve ever encountered at a company holiday party.

Continue reading “Wife’s Company Holiday Party – Part 2”

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