Posts Tagged ‘work’

This. Means. War.

Posted: July 27, 2014 in Rant
Tags: , , , , ,

*ahem*  Let’s see how good my faux German accent is today.  Buckle up.  *snicker*

…before we begin our next phase, I would like to take some time to address a rumor floating around ze fleet.

Some of you have come to believe zhat I.  Like.  War.
I vish to dash these rumors.  I do not like war.
I.  Love.  War.

Through my life, I have discovered so many forms of war.  You get up in ze morning.  You get into your shitty car, und you see a rich CEO who works half as hard as you do drive down the street in his Porsche.

Class war!

Zen you try und post about it on your Facebook, but zen all your friends start arguing about vhat’s right und vhat’s wrong–

Flame war!”

— The Major, Hellsing Ultimate Abridged (Episode 4… definitely NSFW…  Check out Takahata101 on YouTube)

Ah, now that feels better.  The whole speech truly encompasses the goddamn euphoric feeling I get when I am gloriously justified in loosing my wrath.  I never once anticipated that my current Bitcoin obsession would eventually result in me picking a fight with the powers that be in Albany, NY.

Those of you that live in The Empire State are already facepalming, realizing that I am voluntarily preparing to stick my size 11 boot in the biggest pile of sycophants and fail found outside of The Federal Beltway.  Why would I take on such an implacable edifice of feckless bureaucracy?  Well, let me cut to the chase– they’re poised to shit in my Wheaties.  In short, fuck that noise.


Bet you were expecting Alucard to show up here. You were mistaken.

I will not sit idly by and let some six-figure-pulling jackass destroy my opportunity to make a decent living using my own ambitions and abilities.  Sooooo, here’s where things are about to get interesting.  Why, you ask?  Well, it comes back to war.  Waltzing into a fight without allies is more stupid than a bunch of technophobe Baby Boomers trying to regulate a global cryptocurrency.  It’s bad enough that Wall Street is under their jurisdiction– and wouldn’t you know?  They failed at regulating that so hard, it hatefucked the USA into another recession.

I’m not letting them screw my ambitions just because they’re idiots.  Luckily for me, there’s a state assemblyman who has his head screwed on straight…. and I happened to have met the man a few weeks ago in person.  The following is a verbatim copy of the letter that I’m sending to his office via certified mail tomorrow to fire my opening volley.

Have a read:

Under normal circumstances, I wouldn’t have opted for such an informal salutation, however after meeting you while I was working at the [redacted]—you told me this is how you prefer to be addressed. I am writing you to express my concern and disdain for NYDFS’s proposed regulation/licensing of Bitcoin-based financial ventures. As you once said, NYS has a disturbing habit of squashing ambition and incentivizing failure—and I believe the proposed actions of NYDFS to be yet another sign of your observation. They claim that this is to strike a balance between protecting consumers and setting common sense rules—but the proposal is precisely the opposite in every way. No private individual or business entity can or will be affected by Bitcoin that does not choose to deal with it. Furthermore, virtual currencies like Bitcoin are of no danger to the public—contrary to this reactionary proposal. Truth be told, it’s plainly obvious they consider Bitcoin to be a criminal endeavor only—and they wish to destroy opportunities for residents who aren’t among the financial elite.

Firstly, as you plainly know—economic and employment opportunities in Western New York are pitiful if put politely. This proposed burdensome set of licensure and data-collecting measures reflects two things about NYDFS—and namely Superintendent Benjamin Laswky. One, they have no grasp of what they are trying to regulate. Two, they do not care if innovation and businesses continue to flee from New York State like first class passengers from the Titanic. Their myopic and alarmist set of measures betray their lack of understanding for what Bitcoin is (how it works, how it’s produced, and how it’s used)—and demonstrates deliberate ignorance of the IRS’s ruling that Bitcoin is a commodity and not a currency.

According to the IRS’s decision, virtual currencies like Bitcoin are to be treated in the same manner as birdhouses produced in one’s garage.  Similarly, individuals like myself who have the technical knowhow to set up a Bitcoin “mine” have the opportunity to lift themselves from the current economic climate—and potentially return more to our respective communities than if we were stuck in the traditional job market. With their current proposal, any small mines like mine (in my case uniquely benefitting from the inexpensive electric service by the Jamestown BPU) would be driven out of business– or out of New York State. This is an economic boon that NYDFS will deny enterprising individuals, and exclude from the state’s taxable revenue.

It is very obvious that this proposed direction is an alarmist and reactionary move in response to articles on MSN, Yahoo (et al) that demonstrate that Bitcoin may be used for money laundering purposes.  In the case of Bitcoin mines (the production side of the equation, where specialized computer hardware generates Bitcoin for sale/usage), that is impossible. I am not surprised by the myopic response by the NYDFS—it is on par with individuals who lack the technical abilities to handle the simplest of tasks like setting up their own email client. These cumbersomely stringent (and presumably expensive) licensing and documentation procedures reflect their erroneous understanding of virtual currency, from production to purchase/sale.   If Mr. Lawsky has his way and this proposal becomes law, the only individuals with the resources and capital capable of accommodating the regulations/licensing will be large businesses. There will be no room for forward-thinking individuals to better their circumstances through their own ability and ambition. So much for the American Dream of creating opportunities from your own hard work and ingenuity, right? I am not surprised by this disregard for the common citizen as the NYDFS members have little first-person experience with the current job market and economic climate. Their six-figure salaries and stock portfolios are already taken care of.

This brings me to my final, and probably most ireful, point. NYDFS has already failed pathetically at regulating Wall Street (which is already under their purview, and has harmed the lives of millions of Americans through their questionable practices.)   After reading their proposal—I have little doubt that these individuals are borderline computer-illiterate, Mr. Lawsky included. If you will pardon the phraseology, they have no business attempting to regulate a technology that they only understand through diluted third-party explanations. I am further disgusted by the fact that public funds were wasted on drawing up this reactionary policy, instead of focusing on aspects of public business and finance that do affect the majority of citizens in NYS and beyond. Instead of focusing on the spate of problems already on their desks that they have shirked and ignored, they have chosen to collect their salaries while demonstrating their clear lack of priorities—and understanding of the digital world.

Andy, my Bitcoin-generating hardware is at a stage where it pays my personal electric bill for my apartment—and part of a credit card payment. Currently, I can net roughly $120 per month, and while that is modest—it is a beginning of my business, one that Mr. Lawsky clearly seeks to squash through ill-conceived overregulation. I have a degree in English composition, and even I lack the words to properly express how much this effort by NYDFS must be publicly and permanently ceased.   I cannot stress enough the immediate need to generate a vocal and decisive opposition to his measures in Albany among the decision-making members of government.

Thank you for your time and consideration. I hope to speak with you in the near future about how to stamp out these measures before they permanently drive more ambitious, youthful, entrepreneurs from New York State.

You feeling that joyous quiver in your loins yet?

And the moral of the story is...

Next step, picking five or six other officials to receive similar letters… and then the media….  I don’t take prisoners.

Never piss off a guy with an English writing degree.

It’s showtime.


Anything I feel is worth doing should be worth going utterly overboard. Whether it’s Tough Mudders, Halloween Costumes, Homecoming Alcoholism, or college (I was an undergrad for only a decade)– if I’m going to do it, I’m taking it too far.  It’s just who I am.  Yes, I have lately shirked my passion for the written word to have an affair with my first love– tech.  Believe you me, it’s getting torrid and she’s offering to pay me to stay.

Let me pause to let the slow kids catch up with the metaphor.

There, now that we’re all on the same page (the part where my old laptop has a part time job), I decided to take a step outside my comfort zone.  I like to be solely responsible for all of my successes– and therefore my failures.  I realized my Bitcoin mining operation was not growing fast enough– or rather, I have learned all that I can at this stage.  My current hardware is earning for me, yes, but not at a rate where I can get ridiculous.  I don’t have the funds for that kind of hardware, either.  So I did something that I’m not comfortable doing– I asked for help.

Ladies and gentlemen, Hunter S.

Exactly why I bit the bullet… I wanna get back into the thick of life.

So I went ahead and looked at Kickstarter after hearing about the dude that cranked in over $50 grand for a $10 potato salad, and upon realizing that my “fund” is just to start a business (as opposed for public benefit)– I had to look elsewhere.  I ended up landing on GoFundMe.  I usually scoff at this sort of thing, and if I can’t do it myself– I don’t deserve it.  My pride can be a personality flaw at times.

Realizing that I will never have time to write, nor really do the things for Cortana that I want, I started off my own page.  If, by some amazingly unlikely galactic twist, this works– I’ll finally be able to put all of my talents to use.  My tech background will provide the funds to get me in a permanent writing mode–  and who knows, maybe Cortana will get her way sooner than later and I’ll bring about the apocalypse (by reproducing… it’s the 8th Sign, after all).

So, everyone, share the link wherever you may.  After all, it’s a starter for a business– and pretty much a totally revamped life.  I guess we’ll see what happens.


The mindset.

Seriously though.  Give it a click and give it a share if you can’t give it a buck.



It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood, a beautiful day for a neighbor, why in the Nine Levels of Dante’s Infernal Pit do I have to be everyone’s frigging neighbor?  Seriously, I understand the mechanics of how this happened— but it doesn’t mean I like it any the more.  I always valued my anonymity, my ability to meld into a crowd and vanish, but Jesus Hydrophobic Christ on a tugboat– I never realized how much I’d miss it once it’s gone.

Believe you me, it hasn’t just gone full Houdini–  it’s even worse.  I’ve seemed to go full-on Fred fucking Rogers.

Fuck off, neighbor!

Look at that crooked middle finger! It almost seems appropriate with that benevolent Jimmy Carter grin…

Yes indeedy, at first it was an insidious change…  once in awhile stumbling over one of my boxholders at Wegmans, or someone’d recognize me on the random happenstance that I went out for a drink…  but I quickly realized that it didn’t stop there.  I have learned quite quickly that I can’t go anywhere in this general area without someone recognizing me.

This is the point where I invoke the almighty holy-shit-time-out-4th-wall-breaking-power-of-Zack-Morris.

I no longer can be out in public shitfaced, because I have suddenly become the antithesis of the guy nobody saw sober.  Instead of being sober and surprising everyone– now people know sober me…. and worse off, sober and stressed to the point of bad puns at work me.  This will not fucking do.  What in the Lovecraftian concept of fuck is wrong with this picture besides… I don’t know… everything?!

No, today it all came to a head while I was walking home for lunch…  one of the local kids (and damned in Hell if I know what the little ginger’s name is) waved and called me by name.  Yeah, I know, real cute– right?  Oh no, the rest of the kids apparently now know me too.

Ladies 'n' Gentlemen, Mr. Jon Stewart.

Yeah, my reaction too.

So yeah, I guess that just cements the fact that I’ve been installed as a fixture in the community…  I can no longer get shitfaced where I live, nor near where I live, nor go out in public after the fact…  because hey— the last thing I want to deal with is someone who knows me from work trying to talk shop while I’m endeavoring to enjoy a proper buzz and mind my own goddamn business.

Son… of a bitch.
I miss being a ghost, one rarely if never recognized nor seen around my old home town.


Fuck all kinds of duck.
… and people wonder why I prefer to drink at home for more than just cost-effectiveness and lack of DUI’s.


Anyone who’s paid any attention to anything about me knows that although I’m a serious fan of doing dumb shit, I’m allergic to stupid.  I’m talking full-blown anaphylaxis– which is probably a good thing because my lack of breathing prevents me from breaking out in handcuffs.  This is especially true since I work with the general public six days a week, and believe you me– I should probably be lacing my coffee with antihistamines.

Naught to be seen.

Dumbasses don’t seem to understand… Then again, I shouldn’t be surprised.

I am not a patient individual.  I can fake such qualities that might make me seem almost saintly.  Seriously, have I gone full Postal yet?  No.  Calling Pope Franny– next saint.  Over here.  My head hasn’t exploded yet– another miracle right there.

Example:  how many people can’t comprehend a simple task like addressing/stamping an envelope?  When did this become quantum mechanics?  A girl, probably 13 or 14, came into my office with a large envelope.  There was no address written on it, two random stamps slapped in the wrong corner, and wanted me to send it out.  At first I was confused– seriously, was this shit really happening?  While I’m too sober to appreciate it?  Mind filled with “no fuckin’ way” pity, I inquired what she wanted to do with this envelope– because people often figure that they can fill out the appropriate label at the counter.  No way could this be happening, right?

Wrong.  It was happening like a case of diarrhea on the first hill of a roller coaster– this fine example of what I deal with on a daily basis just fractured reality for me.  I told her to put the address on the front, I’d slap the postage on it– and away it’d go.  You know, give her the benefit of the doubt.  Now, if you’re the kind of asshole that just thought “I’ll bet she couldn’t even fill out the address,” I love you.  Guess what.  The little jiggling wad of fail before me couldn’t even write out the address right, but I won’t get to the icing on the cake yet.  I noticed that the address is for one of the boxes in my very office– but the envelope is clearly labeled as a Tim Horton’s camp submission.  As expected, the next day it’s delivered to the box she wrote down.

Just wait for it.

In so many ways...

That moment when you realize that the person in front of you is the very personification of irreconcilable fail.

Well yesterday the box holder showed up with the envelope, with several pieces of opaque tape slapped over her writing, addressed to where a Timmy Ho Ho’s camp would be expected… Canada.  That’s right, not only did she have no idea how to send it in the first place– she sent it to herself.  Oh yeah, and according to this cloud of piss in the gene pool– she was sending this in because she was invited back to be a counselor.

Nice try, assjack, I think camp counselors have a basic understanding of how to send a letter.  Well.  You’d hope.  That bit of brain-melting ignorance aside, I saw that same porcine sack of genetic party favors screaming obscenities at one of my elderly neighbors last summer and the summer we moved in.

I am nothing short of astounded that these toxic levels of stupidity haven’t killed me.

When Buddy Christ says you're fucked...

I mean, what else can you do?

Ladies and gentlemen, do the world a service and cockblock/beaverdam your dumber friends.  You know the ones.  Otherwise, life’s gonna go full Idiocracy before I’m old enough to retire.

Fuck you, it’s not on the horizon!


Over the past couple months, I’ve seen a lot of posts giving attention to the picketers demanding over $15 an hour to work at McShitheads.  It’s either that or ridiculously raising the minimum wage.  Political posturing aside, let’s break this down for the dumb kids who think this is a good idea…

Truth hurts, don't it?

Truth to life– there are consequences to your actions, no matter what those asshole Baby Boomers tried to litigate out of reality. (Newsflash– they failed.)

First things first– supply and demand.  If suddenly everyone at Greasy’s was paid over $15 an hour, that would be justification for ridonculous inflation.  Meaning– that $15 bucks an hour is going to buy even less than the “minimum wage” you’re getting today.  Interesting sidebar– most of these jobs pay a buck over minimum wage, and you don’t even need to pee in a cup to get them.

You think that life’s too damn expensive now?  Just wait until there’s a sudden influx of money into the system.  Prices will skyrocket as the money will be devalued– and the corporate fat cats will justify raising them to “stay in business.”  We all know this is a blatant lie, but come on– if you truly don’t think this is going to happen, you’re even dumber than you look.  Case and point?  Just look at the asshole ways these employers have gotten around providing healthcare.  This situation is no different, and don’t delude yourself into thinking otherwise.

This disastrous desire would utterly screw each and every American by opening this flood gate, especially seniors who are on fixed incomes.  Not to mention, that increase would be across the board– rent, groceries, gas, healthcare, everything would go up faster than anyone has seen in this country… ever.

Crank faster, buddy, we need more money!

You probably think this is a solution to all our economic issues.

Was that clear enough to start with?  Let’s move on to another reason that fast food isn’t worth premium pay– do you honestly think that the people who did their time in the grease traps and worked their way into good jobs are going to get a commensurate raise to match yours?

Here’s another revelation– they won’t!  That’s right all my little sacks of soylent green, all that time you spent struggling, studying, working, and achieving will be negated.  In fact, if you have done your time in the grease traps (myself included), you might just find yourself making significantly less than the drive-thru operator that just fucked up your order.  Everything you’ve done with your life to better it has officially been for nothing.

Excuse me, I run a post office alone 6 days a week…  I’m responsible for everything that happens in that building, about $20,000 in inventory, and roughly 1,000 customers worth of delivery.  I have keys to a fucking federal building, and I don’t even make $13 an hour.  Do you mean to tell me that slapping processed ass on a bun is worth more than what I do?  Do you think I’ll get a raise too?

Go fuck yourself with a salt-crusted cactus.  Twice.

Guess what, you fucked up-- and I don't care.

Take that spatula, polish it up real nice, turn that summbitch sideways and cram it straight up your ass!

Here are a few small revelations for you if you support this bastardized assholery.  Fast food joints were meant to be supplementary income, starter jobs, or meant to remove the unemployment curse.  It’s called a stepping stone– and almost everyone I know has been there and done that, myself included.  If you can’t step above that stone, I feel bad for you.  I’m not being facetious here, because it’s a thankless job.

Let’s be honest here, it’s not about the job.   The primary problem is people who are working can’t pay to live.  That’s wrong.  The discussion shouldn’t be about unrealistically raising the wages of Thomasina Taco, Franky Frenchfry, and Bobby Burger– because let’s face it: you shouldn’t get $15.00 an hour to fuck up my drive-thru order.  The discussion should be about how to realistically lower the cost of living.

Then again, welcome to America– where rationally assessing and fixing a problem is apparently a thing of the past.


… I was watching Colbert on Hulu last night after a rousing bout at the gym, and realized that I need to run for office.  I’m not talking some chintzy country comptroller position, oh no.  I’m talking a position high enough on the food chain, I can shoryuken a senator in the sack and get away with it because we all know that Washington criminals can pretty much get away with murder.  Ain’t that right, Ted Kennedy?  Wait, he’s dead?  Doesn’t matter, you get the point.

Hell, screw murder, the bigwigs can take a shit on the Constitution with things like PRISM and nobody bats an eye.  However, I digress, I got carried away with my metaphorical assault.  Honestly, anyone who can claim to vote upon a 1,990 page bill with the authority to put it into law because they read and understood the whole thing is probably too delusional to notice a proper dick punch (or cunt punt… gotta be fair to the womens).  That’s right, I haven’t read enough about it to even comment on the results— but I can bag on the fact that the vote/signing went down in the first place.  Care to remember that infamous Pelosi quote?  “But we have to pass the [health care] bill so that you can find out what’s in it….”

That’s even dumber than making a binge run to Taco Bell and not being sure if you have TP for when you get home.

Nope, I took the high road and made a child warfare joke.

And you thought I was going to take the low road and make a retard joke. Fucking cretins.

Ahhhh, but this is what we get when– for years– most of our political choices are the equivalent of choosing between a giant douche and a turd sandwich.  Unlike Trey and Matt’s witty metaphor, this shit is only funny to a misanthropic cynic for the delectable I-fucking-told-you-so moment.  Unsurprisingly, those same bastards and bitches are downright clairvoyant when it comes to anything Washington-related… which ties back to me being in office would be fantastically dangerous– and hilariously awesome.

Naturally (and firstly), it wouldn’t happen, because I exist in the real world.

People generally agree that healthcare is something you kinda sorta need to survive in this day and age.  Now, am I the only one who sees how stupid it is to put an hourly threshold for mandatory benefits?  Ladies and gentlemen, Perry Cox was right when he proclaimed that people are “bastard coated bastards with bastard filling.”  What do you think a bastard is going to do when you say that they must provide Harry Hourly and Mindy Minimum with healthcare if they work a certain amount of hours a week?

If you said, “cut their hours,” you are officially smarter than every brain dead suit in Washington, and their sycophantic stooges on the news.

I think most high schoolers would immediately recognize this joke...  It's older than they are.

… yes, these are the same people we are supposed to trust to “report” on our government’s plans for our future.

So, someone’s probably drumming their fingers while reading this and wondering what my self-impressed, narcissistic, insufferable, toned ass would do to fix the situation.  How would I get more universal healthcare to the masses, without utterly boning small business owners into oblivion?  Grab your calculator and roll some numbers with me.

The poverty line in America for one person is a damn-near unlivable $11,490.  At that point, you qualify for Medicaid anyway– so moot point.  So let’s bump it up a bit, but not get crazy here–  let’s say our earner is making $18,000.  That’s still a beyond-shit wage, but you can make ends meet if you’re smart about it.  Instead of fucking the worker by providing an out for the corporation– we institute the 10-1 rule.  If the highest paid member/owner of your organization makes more than ten times the lowest paid member– guess what, you have to provide healthcare.   Most small business owners don’t make more than ten times what they pay their employees, so guess what– they’re going to continue business as usual, and not get screwed over by having part time employees…  but if one person is making a penny over $180k (for this example, at least)…

In short, companies would have incentive to hire on full time (may as well have a full-time workforce if you’re gonna have to pay for them, right?), and small business would still have the advantage of being able to hire part-timers without getting saddled with insurance mandates.  Now, to really drive the nail home– allow insurance companies to compete across state lines so competition (and a larger premium base) will drive the average costs down.

In short, having a job would mean having healthcare (and most likely working full time to boot)– and if you’re unemployed, you’re either retired (Medicare) or covered by Medicaid.   More people covered (which everyone seems to agree is a good thing), and zero opportunity for large corporations to continue dry fucking the working stiffs.

— snark and jokes included, I pretty much handled the issue in under 900 words.

So, someone run me for a major office.  I promise not to show up drunk.

Yeah, that was a lie.


…  why yes, I guess I should let the proverbial cat out of the bag, provided that bag was not given to me by a certain guy named Schrodinger.  I’ll let the slow kids Google it while the rest of us ponder how much more awesome Schrodinger’s Cat would have been if he wasn’t in a box– but a bag.  That’s a whole new dimension, and you love me more for making your brain hurt with it– doncha?  It’s okay to admit, seriously, that dirty feeling washes off with a few gin ‘n’ tonics.

So it may or may not come as a shock to you that I have begun working for the United States Postal Service.  That’s right, I’m workin’ for the government– and freaking loving it.  Hang on to your obligatory “go postal” jokes, I’ll get to those in a minute.  I need to take a moment to gloat at my own expense.

It's about time for me to go Postal...

The ONLY government entity not generally mistrusted by the general public. Blamed for lost checks/bills/packages  (even when not at fault), maybe– but nobody ever calls you a shady dickhole! I call that a win.

Lemme back up for a second, I’m not a carrier– those people have the hard job.  Granted, if I had been offered said position, I would have jumped on it with both feet like Mario on a Koopa– but I lucked out and landed a clerk position.  Not only did I land a clerk position– but it’s at a small-town post office where I run the joint.  Not only do I run the joint– I’m my own postman, and I can walk to work in under four minutes.  I can run to fucking work faster than most people can put the pedal to the metal– and not even get winded.

See me give a flying fuck that it’s not “full time,” I’m saving a ton on gas, and I get an hour and a half for lunch.  If this isn’t a situation utterly soaked in awesomesauce– hand me the winning Powerball numbers.  Otherwise, don’t judge me– because this is a job I can legitimately care about and not feel shitty for doing so.

Let me clarify this for a second before some of you jump on the judgmental bandwagon.  I felt dirty caring about my assistant manager’s job at the Rent-to-Own company because I hated that job for more reasons than I want to delineate here.  The two most recent part time jobs, yeah if I could have found a reason to give a damn about either one of them– I’d have felt dirtier than a hooker running a 2-for-1 Saturday night special.  This position, right here?  I freely give a shit about it– because although it’s not a glamorous job… it’s fucking important that it’s done right.  I can get behind that.  A sense of genuine purpose, no matter how seemingly mundane, goes a long way for a guy like me.

— and here you all thought I was just a shaken bottle of chaos and alcohol.

I highly doubt I'll be using a cat as a silencer in the near future...

Who me?? Nahhhhhh….

Sure, I don’t tend to play nice with bureaucratic horseshit because I’ve got a viper wit and an opportunist’s sense of patience– but I haven’t noticed any of those traditionally federal shenanigans.  Honestly, everyone I have worked with so far has been pretty freaking nice– even if sometimes it appears that overlying web of command is more layered than one of my infamous pans of lasagna.  Seeing how I’m pretty accustomed to being told what to do, it doesn’t matter to me if it’s one or fifty people doling out the orders.

Out in out?  I’m working for the last government organization that is trusted by the public– and that specific fact is pretty well understood by the upper levels of management.  In fact, in spite of the confusing web of command that makes decisions– there is one constant.  The security and efficiency of the mail/package service is the primary imperative to be considered at all junctures.

This is a career path that isn’t glitz and glam, but I’ll tell you one thing.  Compared to anything I’ve done in the past, without question, I will always be able to justify giving 160% and feel good about it… even if I am a bit confused by the “government” way of running things.

Not to mention, the hours are ideal to get me back into a writing/publishing state of being– which was my initial goal to begin with!  Not to mention, being the only employee– I can count on things being done the right way, or I can kick my own ass for screwing up.  It’s also a help that the “small town” atmosphere of my location brings in some pretty nice people to chat with.  Win-win baby.