Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Super Insomniac Eric

My super-powers include:

- consuming my weight in caffeine

- Starting 4 home projects around midnight and finishing nothing.

- Writing my best code between 1:00am and 3:00am.

- Sending out code updates at 3:30am and having them work the next day!

- Resisting the urge to make purchases of things sold at 4:00am on TV.

- Getting up 5 hours later and working again.

- Withstanding the mind-crushing pain of my caffeine withdrawal headache this morning with more caffeine.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Argentina Thief 1, Secret Service 0

CNN: First daughter's purse swiped, source said

Nice work there secret service guys. This is the crack squad defending our leaders?

Monday, November 20, 2006

Tamiflu just got even better

FDA: Tamiflu patients need monitoring

The FDA is adding a new warning label to Tamiflu, a drug used to reduce the effects of the flu. The new labels warns to look for signs of "delirium, hallucinations and other unusual psychiatric behavior" in people taking the drug after more than 100 cases were reported in Japan.


So now in addition to feeling great because your flu symptoms have been significantly reduced, you get the added benefit of disconnecting from reality?!?!?! What more could I ask for from a drug? This would be like finding out that alchohol also reduces your chances of getting pregent. You can't ask for a better combo!

Sunday, November 19, 2006

I'm bringing Ramblings back. YA!

Ladies and gentlemen of the blogsphere rejoice. Eric is back with another "ramblings of the head" (tm) post!

<waits for thunderous applause to die down>

All the standard disclaimer apply. This is my thoughts and opinions alone. No one's elses. Get your own opinions you sheep:) If you are looking for funny or amusing you're reading the wrong post.

Sue doesn't label them as such, but she has managed to write the last couple rambling posts on our blog. And I've been secretly (why does that word not look right no matter how I spell it?) jealous of all the comments and rage her posts manage to bring out.

My turn.

I know I've brought this up with a few people, so I'm sorry that you have to read it here again. Don't think I'm attacking or picking on you in any way.

A while ago I wrote a post about things I regret doing in my life. What I found most interesting about that post was the reaction I got. Several people reacted something like this:

"Eric, you shouldn't regret the things you done. Don't carry all that baggage around. You're a good person. We all love you."

Each one told me some version of this. Different people emphasized different parts of that statement, but more or less that was everyone's reaction. In every case, I had the same thought:

<angry buzzer sounds> Ohhhhh I'm sorry. That answer is incorrect.

The point of that post was not to ask for forgiveness. It wasn't about disliking myself. Or about me feeling like my life would be better if I didn't regret these actions. Or thinking that I'm not a good person because of all these things I've done.

Everyone one of those thoughts was missing the point. Are you ready for the point? Ok here it is: Those regrets offer a window into me. The inner me. The me that thinks about the things he has done, wishes he could do them differently, then shrugs his shoulders and thinks that at least this regret means I have a chance at doing a better job in future.

That's why I carry this regret around. Because if I didn't, every one of those actions would be just as likely today as they were when I choose them on the first go around. I'm wiser now then I was at 17, but that wisdom was earned with this regret. I carry them with me to remind me of what could be every time I make a decision like that without thinking.

I don't WANT to lose my regrets. In some very important ways, they are who I am. Or at least who I aspire to be.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Drunk blog #... Whatever it is now!!!

Sue : "You only take E when you need to and you need to!!" Dance for Life - Tiesto: Cause I am listening to it.

Sue : U of M foozeball sucks balls! Go OSU!

We are drunk! Absolut rocks out lives! Wow, I can't believe Sue knows how to spell Absolut.

Spinning in circles is not good when drunk.


Jay and Silent Bob rulez! Especially when drunk!



Paul, you should write a drunk blog. Its easy! First you get drunk. Then you log into blogger. Then you type stuff.

Sue is blowing the dog's mind right now by rave dancing with her.

Sue : "Save this so that later Eric and I can shoot each other and f$%! like stoned test bunnies!"

Sue : According to Myspace, half of my high school class has lesbian tendencies. Guess I did not catch on to that train.

Me: Too bad.... Although Sue did mention that she would like to double team Eliza Dushku with me. WHICH IS AWESOME!

Sue: This cartoon RULES!!

Friday, November 17, 2006

Cave'mon Finale

When last joined our heroes, they were tied for first place against the evil Team B on the way to Mike's ranch house. And for this final installment, we bring you the magic of ....color photos! Yes, thanks to some tremendous advancements of science, for the first time you will be able to read AND SEE our heroes as they compete for glory!

Our heroes

Our heroes after winning the first event. As it was in ancient times, fake fur vests are worn by the team who won the last event.

4:15pm - We arrive at the house, unpack, then head back outside for some more fun in the quickly waning sun.

4:30pm - First event: Ring Toss. Mike has a rather large steel jungle gym outside in front of the house. He has hung an 18" tire so that the center is about 4 feet off the ground. Each teammate is given 2 frisbees, 2 footballs, and 2 softballs to throw through the tire from about 10 yards away. I managed to get a football and softball through and my boss managed to get one softball through, which tied us for third place with four other teams. As a tie breaker, each team threw one softball through until your team missed. I threw 4 through in a row to win us third and to knock team B out of points for the round! The one point is enough to push us into 1st place.

5:00pm - Next event - Ranch Olympics - A multi-stage timed event of sorts. I'll just list out steps: 1) One teammate carries 10 gallons of water 40 yards while another carries a bale of hay about 40 yards in the other direction. 2) Each runs to the basketball court and shots one basket. 3) when both have made a basket, one teammate slaloms through the swings, walks up a ladder, crawls over the top of one set of monkey bars, then swings at least 3 times on a second set. First to touch the end wins.

I'm sad to say I lost this event for us. We were in the lead for time, but I fell while swinging from the last set of monkey bars, which cost us a few seconds while I jumped for it again. We were awarded no points, but luckily neither did team B.

5:20pm - Final event. 3 teams are still in the running for first place. We are only one point ahead, so no matter what we need to beat team B to win it. With daylight falling, Mike pulls out his most dastardly event of all: THE CHAIR!!!! MUWHAHAH...No wait...That was a show on Fox. Sorry, the actual event was THE HANGMAN. For this event, Mike had attached a pulley to the top of the jungle gym. On one end of the pulley rope was a water ski handle (can you tell the dude likes to water ski yet?). On the other end was a six inch diameter pipe. One teammate hangs from the pipe while the other has to hold them in the air. Lets cut to a picture:


The pipe is large enough so that you cannot wrap your hands all the way around, and as an added difficultly you had to wrap your hands around it as shown in the picture: one hand on each side.

Through a lost coin toss, Steve and I went first in this event. Since I was obviously not going to be able to hold Steve up any length of time, I was going to hang from the pipe.

I step off the platform. Steve has about 70 lbs on me, so for him this event is a cakewalk. Mike is calling out time: 30 seconds (still pretty easy)....45 seconds(ok, starting to feel a little burn)...1 minutes (fuck me, it's only been a minute?!?!)...1:10 (arms are starting to shake uncontrollably)....1:20(hands are slipping)...1:30(come on...just get those extra few seconds)...1:35 (fingers finally slip off the bar). Steve is in shock I think. Last year the longest anyone but one person lasted was under 40 seconds.

Team B went next. Mike is calling out the times again: 30 seconds (no change from either of them)...45 seconds (still no change, I'm starting to worry)...1 minute (the guy holding the rope is really sweating. He is starting to lose it)..1:15 (Guy with the rope jerks. Guy hanging starts to slip)...1:27 (Guy hanging finally loses his grip and falls to the ground!)

In the end Steve and I had the best time on this event by about 5 seconds, which means:



Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Cavemon Part II

This is a continuation of my Cavemon Part I post from Monday. I would encourage you to read that first so you can be in the right state of mind for how much this morning hurt:

When we last joined our hero of this story, he had stumbled into bed thinking, "Fuck! We have cave'mon events tomorrow at 9:00am and I'll be lucky if I show up with both shoes on."

Dare I say, what a hook! I know you have all been waiting breathlessly for what sort of physical games developers dream up. Well, wait no longer!

Cave'mon Day 2!

7:00am - Cell phone rings. I wake up in a panic, assuming I've overslept and race for the phone. Its Sue calling me on the way home. Sue had assumed I would turn my phone off. Internally I think this is Karma punishing me for my actions last night. Two seconds after hanging the phone up I'm sound asleep again.

8:30am - Real wake up call. Oh god. The light! She burns my eyes! Seriously consider killing the man who invented the telephone ring.

9:00am - I've somehow made it to the lobby on time, where no one is looking all that happy. We are all staring at each other deciding on what if anything we should comment on from last night.

They have a breakfest bar. I curse it. Food and me are not on speaking terms at this point. Even that 20oz of Cola and I are arguing, but we stay together for the sake of the kids.

9:30am - Robot guy Mike arrives with a few more folks. Adam lends me some extra jogging pants he had because I all I brought are jeans. I send the rest of the day in another man's pants (and get a constant ribbing for it).

Mike has folks draw names to create teams for the events. I'm paired with my boss Steve. Just to set the picture, Steve is a pretty big guy (say 220 lbs) in his 40s. He's wearing one of those skin tight Under Armour shorts, a fleece, and a skin tight cap. The image of him in those shorts still haunts my dreams.

10:00am - Time for some events! All our events are designed so that the really athletic young guys don't have too much of an advantage over the 40 year old guys who's only exercise is chasing 9 year old children. We have a total of 5 teams. For each event we gave 5 points for first, 3 for second, and 1 for first.

First up is "wack a ball". Each team member hits a golf ball and whiffle ball off a tee. Farthest combined distance wins. However, the twist is that for golf, the ball is placed on top of one of those small traffic cones and for tee ball, the tee is set up for 5 year olds. Nothing like watching a guy who has a 1 under par average try to hit a golf ball that is raised up a foot off the ground instead of the usual 1/2 inch. We broke a LOT of cones:)

Steve has the longest golf drive by far, and I had the longest tee ball shot, so we easily win this event. 5 points for the good guys!

10:30am - Next event is a sort-of-cross between discus and the hammer toss. Mike had a tied a large ten lb weight to a 2 foot ski rope. You spun around however you wanted and threw the weight. We sucked at this event. Zero points.

Ring Toss

11:00am - Next event is a relay event. Three cones set up in a triangle, each 60 feet apart. At each cone there is either a football, frisbee, or softball. You can't run with a ball, so you relay around the cones by throwing the balls back and forth until you pass the next cone. You then switch to the item at that cone. If you drop the ball, you both have to return the cone you are throwing from. First team with both guys around wins. Steve and I also won this event (mostly do to the fact that we never dropped a ball). 10 points for us now.

11:30am - Next is a wagon race (sort of). Same cone configuration. At the first cone is a wagon. Second has a dolly, and third a wheel barrel. And you had to switch puller and pullee at least once. We got trounced in this event (imagine me trying to pull a 220 guy in a wagon).

12:00pm - Time for a break from all this running. After a quick stop at the bar for some snacking (the really brave guys go for beer too. Beer and I are currently not friends due to something beer said about my mom last night), we switch to retarded bowling. Retarded bowling is just like regular bowling except you have to switch the hand you bowl with on every throw.

Its much, much harder then it sounds. First game I bowled a 68! I haven't bowled that low since I was 10. By the second game I had sort of figured it out and managed to throw a 128, which was enough to secure 3rd for us. I think it helped that I started drinking about half way through the first game. At the end of 5 events Steve and I are tied with another team for first place.

2:00pm - Lunch at Hooters (come on, are you really surprised?). This was the best Hooters I have ever been in if you are considering the quality of the ladies only. As always, the food was so-so.

A couple of models from their 2007 calendar were there signing copies. I have to admit that I've never seen a 6'2" blonde model in person. The effect was more intimidating then sexy:) 2 more beers and we are off to Mike's cabin.

I think this blog is already too long, so we'll have to wait and see if the dynamic duo of Steve and Eric can win it all next time!

Monday, November 13, 2006

CAVE'MON! Part 1

The rich crazy robot guy I talked about a few posts ago held his annual "Cave'mon" event at his ranch in Texas this weekend and yours truly attended with about 8 guys from work, plus the guy’s brother and few local friends. It’s an annual event where we separate the men from the boys here in the developers group (which is the group I work for).

The details are a little hazy because I may have consumed my weight in alcohol and bar snacks this weekend, but the chronology went something like this. I’m only writing for Friday today. Saturday will have to wait for another post.

10:00am – Get a call from my boss and my buddy Adam that they are at the Northwest Lounge at the airport and already drinking. Adam claims the boss has already had 4:) I feel left out because I’m on a later flight, but let it slide.

6:00pm – Land in Dallas. Call Adam to get a ride to the hotel. They are already in the bar and he informs me he has had 13 drinks today since his last call. I’m going to have to do some catching up and get my own ride to the bar…

~7:00pm – There are 7 of us at the bar. I’ve had ½ a pitcher of beer (which I drank straight from the pitcher because we were low on cups), 2 Jager Bombs, and a jack and coke in the span of 15 minutes. Oh, and I haven’t eaten since noon. Buzz is going good.

~7:30pm – Head to Bone Daddies, a Hooters-like bar in Dallas. I ordered their Beer Can Chicken, which they describe as “slow smoked, whole marinated chicken, 'violated' with a beer can…”. See that part in bold? They aren’t kidding. They brought me a small chicken with a beer can shoved all the way into the ass end. Sort of like…actually, I can’t think of anything it is like. You can just barely see it in the upper right corner of the first image on this page if you are really curious.

We order some monstrous beers and continue drinking.

~7:45pm – On a dare, I ask the waitress her cup size. She lies. “D”. Yea right!

~9:00pm – Of course, someone insists we see some strippers. One of the guys knows a place nearby that is BYOB (in Texas you can either have all nude girls, or you can serve alcohol, but not both). After a quick stop to get rid of the one guy who can resist strippers (easy when you don't drink cheater!) and another at a gas station for some cheap beer, we are ready to see some naked ladies!

~10:00pm – This part's a bit of blur, but I will say this: If a few strippers find out that you have guys with you that think dropping $400 dollars in a night is no big deal, your table will get a LOT of attention. And apparently all those rules about not touching the strippers only apply if you are not giving out $20s like they’re M&Ms. In the next 3 1/2 hours, we 6 consume a bottle of Jager and at least 30 beers.

~10:15pm – Get first lap dance from my boss while he watches. That’s not uncomfortable. Nope, not at all. Moving on…

~12:00am – My boss Steve has disappeared with a stripper who was doing things I am pretty sure are illegal right in front of me. I have no idea where he is. I assume he is upstairs in the VIP room. I won't see him again until tomorrow morning.

~12:10am –A stripper is sitting on my lap telling me her life story despite the fact that I told her right when she sat down that I had no intention of getting a lap dance. Somehow she becomes less sexy when she tells me she has two kids and is NOT working her way through college. Come on hon! Keep up the fantasy for me just a little, all right?

~1:00am – A stripper starts making the rounds around our table who likes to twist nipples. And I mean TWIST! Fucken’a bitch! Who the fuck told you that was sexy? Cause its not! My nipples were still sore two days later. Somehow despite seeing her do it several times, we all fall victim to her.

~2:00am – Nipple twister feels bad for the pain inflicted (plus she’s just waiting for the guys with real money to return to the table), so she sits on my leg and decides to gives me advice on how to please a girl. I remember telling her "I don't need advice, I'm already the best lay you've ever met", but she tells me stuff anyways. For someone who like to twists nipples as hard as that crazy chick did, I was surprised that her answer to everything was be gentle.

~2:30am – We finally call it a night. I know we have dropped at least $600 in this place between the 7 guys we have out. And 2 of us only got one lap dance each at $20, so you do the math…

~2:45am – Get back to the hotel room. Adam asks me how to get to the stairs even though his room is on the ground floor. I stumbled into bed thinking, “Fuck! We have cave’mon events tomorrow at 9:00am and I’ll be lucky if I show up with both shoes on.”

Tomorrow: Separating the men from the boys with crazy events!

Thursday, November 09, 2006

This is Ithaca, NY

Some pics of our recent trip to Ithaca, NY to visit our great friends Paul and Sue. It was very pretty with all of the waterfalls. There were 3 or 4 huge waterfalls. The one place looked like something out of the Lord of the Rings. Very beautiful landscape!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Evil Eric

Evil Eric
The evil Eric has arrived!! All run and hide in the shadows!!


I am so glad that Granholm held her governorship in Michigan. Congrats to all of the Democrats that have won this election. We have the house! W00t! I am very happy that my vote counted this year. Go Americans, use your voting power and fight for truthiness!!

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Get out and vote

Use your right to vote and go do it. Don't just sit at home and let others make decisions for you! Vote or P. Diddy will hunt you down and blow your motherf#$in head off... :)

Be thankful that in a few short hours all of those damn political commercials will be done. Ahh, I can hear the silence now...

Wow actual comments.

This is why people should talk in person. Typing does not show inflection or emotion. Thank you all for your comments, I really enjoy when people take the time to express their own thoughts. That is how people learn.

On that note, you all misread my blog. I am a nurse first and foremost and I most certainly would not deny anyone any care for any reason. I may think differently and may not agree but I still give the highest standard of care. I made that oath when I got into it. In the beginning of the last blog I stated that my job is challenging as far as ethics goes and there never is a right and wrong answer and that is why I love what I do! It is not easy saving lives and it really sucks when you know you can save someone and they won't let you, especially when you have patients down the hall that you have worked so hard to save to no avail. Nursing is challenging because it is very emotionally charged work but you cannot get too involved with each case because you would go crazy. I deal with death every single day! It can be really hard to watch people die constantly, feeling absolutely helpless sometimes, even with all of the technology you have at your fingertips. I constantly meet new people and learn about all kinds of cultures and religions. I do not have to believe and like every single one of them and I do not have to understand them. Every time a person dies I stop for a moment and silently shed a tear for that loss but then I have to move on and deal with the ones still living because they need me.

I do not believe I wrote about a double standard. Blood transfusions are not a technology and we do not consider it as such. They have done that since the 1800's. That is like fluid in hospitals. It is a natural medicine. And there is a big difference between 1)getting a blood transfusion to save your life with little or no side effects and a great life and 2)having a ventilator and manufactured, unnatural medicine to keep your heart and blood pressure going and not being able to move any of your extremities. With these comments aren't you carrying the double edged sword? Once again, the first example was being kept alive against her wishes since the daugher was calling the shots. The second lady was doing everything she wanted which is fine. My point was why even have a surgery at all that more than likely will require a large blood transfusion and go through all of that if you will not have the transfusions? Why even use medicine at all? Why is using anesthetic, scapels, ventilators (all manufactured, unnatural things) acceptable and yet the most natural thing BLOOD is not accepted? I just do not get it and I do not understand why Jehovah's witnesses believe this. I am not religious that is who I am.

I am not religious. That is my right. It does not mean I am a bad person. I think rationally first and that is just how I am programmed. It also does not mean that I will hate you because of your religion. I have had friends that were Jehovah's witnesses, Jewish, Catholic, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, etc. I like learning about all of them. I just wonder with so many ones out there, how come some people think there's is the best and only? Religion just seems to bring out the worst in people some times and they do not think with their brain. How many wars have there been with religion as the cause? How many people have died just because someone thought they had the wrong religion and killed them?

What does my vehicle have to do with this? This was a religious topic!! I bought a car with my beliefs! Deal. It looks good and I like Ford, I am a Michigander what is wrong with that? Mustangs look good and we do not drive it everyday anyway. For 6 months it will sit in the garage since it is not a snow car. It is a fun car. We work hard and earned it. The Mustang is an icon and we wanted to own one for the historical value and the hotness. Get over it. I will never own a foreign car! In Michigan that is just what you believe.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Ethics in the workplace

Hello all. My new job has been going great and I love it but it does challenge me and my ethical beliefs constantly and it makes me a better person. A university hospital is very technologically advanced and sometimes this technology saves lives but sometimes it seems like why are we keeping this person alive with this technology. We had one lady that was in the ICU for 4 months and she did not want any of what we were doing and the nurses knew it but the one daughter of hers that had the power of attorney wanted to do whatever possible to keep her alive due to guilt on her part. Last week the family finally decided enough was enough after 2 months of convincing by the medical team. They drove her home to die. We were thrilled since we knew that was what the patient wanted. That kind of thing happens everyday, when is enough, enough?

Last week though there was a situation that just angered me. I was not the nurse but the patient was near to where I was working that day. It was a woman in her 40's to 50's who had her spleen removed, a very routine surgery that most people recover from very quickly. The thing is that it is a bloody surgery so you usually loose a good amount and so you need several units of blood reinfused via donation. Her surgery went well but she did loose a substantial amount of blood. The kicker was that she was a Jehovah's witness and refused any blood transfusions period. We gave her all the blood that she had donated prior to the surgery which was not much and we gave her all of the non-blood products we could to give her volume but to no use. About 2 hours after she got out of surgery her blood pressure and heart rate just kept falling and she died. How dumb is that? She would have easily lived with a couple of units of blood. You just cannot manufacture something as good as human blood. It just made me angry that someone let there religious beliefs kill them like that. Religion is not worth your own life. I wish people would realize this. I would not have been able to take care of this lady because I would want to be yelling at her and saying why are you so damn stupid even though she was unconscious and on good drugs. Unfortunately you cannot change people's beliefs no matter how farfetched they are. Jehovah's witness is one of the religions I will never understand. After she died I just thought: What a waste of time and resources on our parts. She had a $20,000 surgery for no reason basically. I wish she would have weighed the goods and bads and would have not had the surgery to begin with. I really hate how religion runs people's lives sometimes. It is all fake people and you are just using it as a crutch so as to not face your real life and problems!! Get over it!

Update: Of course I would never ever say this to a patient but I would be thinking it. I would give every patient I have the very best care regardless of their color religion or beliefs.

Update: As a nurse you have to know your boundries and what you believe and sometimes you have to take yourself out of the situations where you have a strong belief. That was the point of this blog. Nursing is hard and there are a lot of big issues that arise.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Update from the Midwest

I'm in Wisconsin again this week. I've been working like a dog here. Its been 13 hour days everyday so far this week. I swear my boss is a robot. Seriously! The dude never seems to need to eat or sleep. I swear he only eats because his overlord master programmed him to do so to fit in. And sleep is probably just him standing in the corner conserving battery juice while his finger is in a light socket.

Maybe I'm just bitter because the guy is in his late 30s and has about $25 million to his name.