Thursday, October 30, 2008

Candid Canada Candy

Oh Canada! With all your candies, bear. Why do your forsake me with your tantilizing treats which only reside North of our US border? Canada knows how to make chocolate. Canada Chocolate tastes like.... well, Chocolate. The way it should be. Have you ever splurged on a good chocolate bar from Europe? Compared to US chocolate, it is more choclately and less sugary/waxy. Try a bar up there and you will know. They make bars like Aero, Coffee Crisp, Wunderbar, Smarties, Dairy Milk, on and on. They also make a great hard chewy Toffee bar call Mack. Fabulous. WAIT A MINUTE! You have a picture of a Kit-Kat Bar. That is available in the US, ya idiot! Well, yes. That is true but the chocolate they use on the Kit-Kat in Canada is 100x better. Try it yourself. Get a Canadian Kit-Kat and an American one and try for yourself. If you ask the people at Costco up in Vancouver BC which Bars sell the most for Americans they say it is easily the Aero and the Kit-Kat bar.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Oden = Bowie = Disaster

For any of you die hard Blazer fans out there or even the fair-weather fans (like me), we hit another iceberg with our incredible ability to select injured prone players.

Anyone remember the mid 80s (1984) when we had a 2nd overall draft pick and we chose Sam Bowie over Michael Jordan? Well if you did not know it you do now.... (Michael went third to Chicago). Anyway, Sam was an injury prone nightmare. My friend Bob always called him "Chalk legs". Well, lookey here... History repeats itself. Last year we select Greg Oden. Top pick in the draft. Blazers are going to rule, right? BAM! Oden tears out his knee and did not play a single game last year. OK. Lets rest him up for the next year, right? BAM! He twists his ankle in his first game and now he needs an MRI. Blazers Rock!!!!

Baseball as I know it is over... for now

The World Series may not be over (will it snow in Philly tonight?) but Little league fall-ball is. Last weekend put a close to spring and fall ball for Little league. Love to see the kids play but could always ask for more. Like a few more wins. We are in little league District #4 This is a tough district as we have teams that include Murray Hill which consistently make it to regionals and have actually made it to the World Series. Cedar Mill (Where my kids play) is considered a fair group but not at the level as the top teams in #4. So, we took some beatings. Pictures of my youngest as a catcher and hitting his third base hit of the game! Tyler is not pictured as he at strep throat and missed the last two games. Goodbye 2008 season.

I need to do some serious contemplating. Do I coach again this year or not? I guess I have a few months to figure it out.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Poutine Anyone?

Wikipedia describes Poutine as "a dish consisting of French Fries topped with fresh cheese curd covered with brown gravy and sometimes additional ingredients."

I describe it as Scrum-diddly-icious!

Next time in Canada, be sure to upgrade your McDonalds, Burger King, or A&W combo meal to poutine instead of fries. However, the family agrees that the best Poutine is at Costco (where you get the 1.50 hot dogs).

Technically, the best golf ball

Let it be known, I am probably the worst golfer known to man. For those of you who do golf you will understand that golfing a 130+ for 18 holes is not considered even a fair golfer. Regardless of that, I needed to get some golf balls for this weekend's golf event with my friends, Billy, Ken, and Mac Crappy. I like to research things to make sure I get the best bang for my buck. Somewhat of a technical geek, I like to see the cold hard facts regarding the specs so I can make a sound judgment based on my needs. Enter the ultimate golf ball. The Nike Power Distance Long ball. These are SERIOUS Balls. How do I know? Simple. Take a look at the other picture with the graph. They are so proud of these balls they actually post the graph right on the box! Sorry for the blurry camera photo but the red box says "Driver" and the writing above the graph says "Faster, Longer Distance". So how do you read the graph? Well there is no data on the X axis or the Y axis, thats true. And there is no comparison to the competition either. You got a point there... But regardless, look at that graph! Its all there. It starts off small and goes out a long was and gets wider by the end. That is enough for me!!! Best ball ever!

Timmy's Theorem of Consistent Reporting

The Theorem is another simple one that a lot of you have already heard. Two parts:

1) No matter how much shopping goes on, Christmas sales will always be dissappointing
2) No matter how much Snowfall and rain Oregon gets, we will have some sort of drought warning

You can set your watch to both of these. When you read about them in the paper I want you all to think about me and the useful information you receive here at timmyopolis.

Christmas Sales: This one bugs me the most. In the good economic times or the bad economic times, it does not matter, there is always a report soon after thanksgiving and after Christmas that the retailers reported less than expected sales. What the heck are these guys expecting? How is it that you wait in lines forever at a mall or Target or anywhere but still they report dismal sales? Were there not enough lines? Were people only buying socks? Not from what I see. I was recently reading USA today and they are already reporting dismal sales for Christmas and Thanksgiving has not even started yet!!!! Granted, a lot of stores are already starting their Christmas sales due to this economic crisis we are in but Sheesh.... Wait until the Shopping season has begun!

Drought: We have years when rain and snowfall is far below normal. I get it. That means we need to conserve water and do our part. No problems there. Here is what gets me.... Sometime in January, they do their official readings of snowpack and current status of stored water and river levels. On years where where snowfall is over the top in height and reservoirs are so full that they need to open the flood gates to make way for the snow melt they still have the gall to say something to the effect that we still need to be cautious of our water usage because we either need to recover from a drought 3 years ago or because our demand is much more than our snowfall can produce. Listen and you will hear it. I have no Idea why this bugs me. Perhaps it is because I am a born and raised Oregonian and I hear it every year. I don't know Either way, you can set your watch to it.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Timmy's Strip Mall Theorem

The Theorem simply states: With the exception of Dry Cleaners, any strip mall store that places specific 'Reserved parking' signs in front of their store will go out of business within 6 months.
Prove me wrong!!!
Look, We saw this happen with frozen yogurt shops, the mom and pop video stores and we see this in a variety of other stores including those tiny computer stores. What is going on in there head?.....
Computer shop owner: Hmmmm. Why is my business failing? People like an over-cluttered dusty store. They like outdated equipment. They like no-name brands that look like its been stolen.... No thats not it. I know its not the prices. I continusouly raise them to make up for the lack of sales so I am good there. My Attitude? Nope. I have no social skills but people appreciate me pointing out their flaws when it comes to computer knowledge. They just don't understand how ignorant they are. So, what could it be..... Got it! it is that darn Hallmark store next door with their crazy customer base. I have counted over 6 customers in a period of a day. That is crazy! This is putting a chokehold on my customers trying to get in to my store. People are driving right on by.
Signs go up. Store closes down.

Handey Halloween

A beautiful Jack Handey Quote:
Sometimes when I feel like killing someone, I do a little trick to calm myself down. I'll go over to the person's house and ring the doorbell. When the person comes to the door, I'm gone, but you know what I've left on the porch? A jack-o'-lantern with a knife in the side of its head with a note that says "you." After that, I usually feel a lot better, and no harm done.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Golden Egg

The Girls are back in town!!! My 4 ladies have broken their molting spell. After 4 or so weeks of feather falling and no eggs.... BAM! This little beauty was found in one of the nests. Julie set it up for this spectacular photo shoot that you see here. This was Saturday. Today, 3 more of these bad boys were in the nest. I think we are back in the black for these brown oval protein capsules.
Thanks to all of you who held hands, lit candles, payed visits, and cried for them. It ALL paid off!

Candlelighter Dinner

Saturday night was a charity event for Candlelighters. An organization helping families who have kids with cancer. A great cause and a great event. We were at the A Cut Above Exteriors Table with my friends Mark, Julie, Janet, Donna, Erik, Sally and Patty. We had a great Dinner at Montgomery park and had a really good time. I spent way too much at the Silent Auction but hey, its for a great cause, right? And, we scored some nice Golf apparel, Golf rounds, Cordless Drill, a Wine tasting event, and a sweet bottle of wine (Not that $6.99 crap).

Other people at the table got artwork, Cherries, more wine, and made additional donations.

Special Thanks to Mark and Julie and A Cut Above Exteriors for the invite and their commitment to such a great cause. Look them up on-line at

Wine pick of the month

In our basement, we have this closet that is made entirely of concrete. This includes the ceiling. Our house was built in the 50s so it would not suprise me if this was a bomb shelter or something crazy like that. Anyway, this room makes for a nice little Wine Cellar. I mounted a couple of Wine Racks in there. Problem is that it takes a lot of $$ to fill it up. We have a couple of nice bottles that we have received from friends. And we purchase bottles here and there based on wine tastings or sales. But still, it takes a lot of moolah to have a fully stocked wine rack. So, you may be already thinking, what good wines exist out there today that cost $6.99 or less? We found it! The Big Black Sheep wine. Available at Costco. Item #744055. Hey, if you can trust Costco for your 40 pack of toilet paper you most certainly can trust them for their high quality wine selection.

"Deep red colour with purple fringe. Intense aromas of vanilla, coffee, red fruit, spice and herbs. Rich palate with soft tannins, vanilla and red fruit flavours, with excellent length....." says Opheliac9 at cork' Personally, I have no Idea what that means. It seems to me that Anyone can "taste" or "smell" the standard flavors into a red wine and I will beleive it. Vanilla, Citrus, Berries, coffee, spices, oak, on and on. Do they actually put this stuff into the wine? Excellent length? What kind of cop out is that? Well, its not too long but then again, its not too short either. To me its either good tasting red wine or bad tasting red wine. They could tell me this wine has a hint of black sheep squeezings and I would be fine with it. Its a good tasting wine. And for 7 bucks.... How can you go wrong. It funnels nicely.

Friday, October 24, 2008

The upcoming elections....

So, let it be known that I am a person that leans to the conservative type of thinking. No, I am not a hard core Right-wing wacko. But by those same means, I am also not a far-left liberal socialist either. I will simply vote for a candidate that meets my beliefs the closest and has a chance of doing something about it.

How do I pick my candidates? Easy. Negative campaigning. How else are we going to learn about the bad things the candidates have done? For example, I have learned that every candidate has voted to raise taxes. Hundreds of times! Some candidates want to hurt our children. Other Candidates are seeking out to destroy the environment. Candidates want to hurt the middle class, pad the pockets of big corporations, destroy health care, and take away our right to a comfortable retirement. We simply would not of known these things without those ads that have been running. I have learned a LOT!

Presidential picks. I am currently leaning towards my old addage "Don't blame me, I didn't vote". I don't like either of the candidates. How on earth do we get down to these candidates out of 300 million citizens in the US? I don't get it.

And how about the Oregon Ballot measures? Measure 57 and 61 actually address essentially the same thing but have different outcomes. 57 stiffens penalties for certain crimes while 61 imposes mandatory sentencing. Both measures cannot exist together so here is what they did. IF both measures pass, the one with the most votes will go into effect. Confusing for Joe the Plumber on Mainstreet? You Betcha.

I leave you all with what I found a hillarious rap by Amy P on SNL.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Cafe Capers

Our beautiful Cafe. This is our smallest Cafe in our campus. However, it is the most convenient for me as I work exactly two floors up in the same building. It has a Deli, Mexican fare, Indian Fare, Misc Hot foods, and a soup and salad bar. Not too bad. The other Cafe has much more including a wood burning pizza oven, etc.

On to the capers.... Over the past year, I have seen three amazing feats of cheap-skateisms that I felt compelled to share. You see and hear little things all the time (Pat mentioned today that he knew someone that hid bacon under eggs during breakfast, etc). But these stand out as my top three. The last one happened a couple of days ago and since I have this blog.... why not:

1) Soup Supplementing: Saw a person pack a salad-to-go container tight. Then took the side dressing containers (you know those little plastic cups) and instead of filling it with dressing, he filled 4 cups with soup.

2) Home on the Ranch: Saw another person take a soup-to-go container (I would say about 24 oz?) and fill it to the rim with Ranch dressing. That is either a unhealthy protein lunch or a shopping spree for home condiments

3) On the Cheese: This one happened this week. Another person took a medium Salad-to-go container and poured all the feta cheese from the salad bar into his container. Here is the best part.... He filled it 3/4 full and then asked the salad bar tender if she had any more Feta cheese. I did not stick around to see the end result but this person was not hiding anything.

Any other good stories out there?

Lay Ladies Lay!

Oh to you beautiful ladies. Pip, and Blacko, Popcorn, and Cluck. My pride and joy. The fruits of my labor. What has gone wrong?

I am a chicken rancher by trade. I currently hold down a chicken ranch consisting of 4 chickens. During peak production, I am able to harvest about 3 to 4 eggs per day! That adds up to 2 dozen eggs per week. Assuming I was selling them at say... $4 bucks a dozen. That is 32 bucks a month cold hard cash. However, I don't sell them. I eat them and try to share them with the neighbors who often take care of them when I am out (Thanks Julie and Erik!).

Anyway, the ladies have stopped laying. You heard me. Nothing. And they are losing their feathers. They are not eating very much. And they are much slower to get out of the coop when I open it up in the morning. What is up with this? Are they sick? Are they dying? How long do chickens live anyways? These chickens are a little over a year old. I guess a Chicken Rancher should know these things.

Well, Thanks to and my trusty chicken raising book, I discovered that they are molting. Molting is something they do yearly. They lose their feathers and often stop laying. I think they are miserable at the moment. Poor things but it should be over soon. Then I can get back to all that money I could have.

Here is an Idea. Look what this lady did to help her chickens stay warm doing molting. She calls it a Chicken Saddle. This pic is from

There Back!!!

I thought these things died out in the 70's or the 80's? I don't think I was old enough to drive when these bad boys were plastered to cars across America. Well, enough about the past. Lets talk about the future and after seeing this, it appears its going to be a bright one.

I saw this one in the parking lot at work last night. It is the only one I have seen BUT I am sure they are catching on like wildfire. They are absolutely hillarious and original but there is also a serious side to them. Take note of the Shape and the color. Yup.... Caution. This sign is indicating that there is an important message within its borders that should be read, understood, and if necessary, make the appropriate adjustments to what you are doing to heed the caution.
If I was driving and saw one of these signs, I think the appropriate measure is to slow down and proceed with extreme caution until you are certain that safe passage for the "baby on board" is achieved. I wish a lot more people had these so I could continuously scan for these signs and make adjustments to my driving immediately.

One problem though.... This was a parked car and although there was a baby seat in it, there was no baby. Hmmm. How does that work? One would think that with such an important sign being displayed in your car that the owner should take the responsiblity to take the sign down when the baby is Not on Board. Perhaps once the baby has been taken out of the car, the driver should take down the sign and replace it with a "Baby not on Board" sign. That would help me a lot.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Free Beverage and Fruit

The company has thrown me a couple of bones and I am gnawing. We have all enjoyed the complimentary beverages (Soda, Coffee, Tea,...) for a few months now And BAM! they throw us this:

Well, Howdy doo. Not a bad deal.

I had a Banana this morning and now I am finishing off the trifecta right now. Diet Coke and a Washington Red Delicious. Thats what I'm talkin' bout.

Aesop Fables...

Last night, the kids wanted for me to read a few Stories in Aesop Fables. I liked reading the short stories as a kid and it turns out my kids like them too. They like to guess the moral to the story. Some of the stories make no sense but is fun to guess.

Anyway, we were reading a story regarding a wagon driver (Wagoner) who drove through mud and got stuck. His horse team was unable to pull out of it. The wagoner cried to the gods for help (Gods in these days were in the realm of Greek Mythology). Finally, Hercules himself showed up to see what the problem was. After assessing the situation, he told the wagoner to get out and put his shoulder behind a wheel and use his strength with the horses to push his way out of the mess. He was to call him back only if he had exhausted all his options.

Morale to the story? Heaven helps those who help themselves.

Hey, I thought that was a biblical quote. Did a little research on the internet and found that this quote is commonly referred as a Bible quote but it is not. Aesop owns this one.

Ya learn something new every day.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Entering the Land of Blogs....

A bold step I needed to make. The calling for me to publish my thoughts so everyone can read became unbearable. The strings of my heart being pulled ever so tightly has forced me to create this blog. Now that I have created one, I thought I could relax knowing that this inner force has been quenched. But no. It appears that blogging is like that crazy widow in the Winchester Mansion who had to keep building on to her mansion to keep the ghosts of people who were shot by Winchester weapons at bay. I too must write. I just wish there was a button I could push to mandate that everyone is required to read what I have got to say. My blog is by no means important. But, if everyone in the world was required to read it, would it not be important at some level?

Anyway, I have a friend. Erikv who has a blog I enjoy reading it. I am not a bicycle fanatic like he is but I still enjoy reading it. One of our mutual friends, Kara complained that his website was "too much Cyclecross and not enough family". Kara is a smart lady. She is right. I have learned over the months that the world revolves around family and not Cyclecross. It took me some time to realize it but I have come to grips. That is a good thing because I barely know what Cyclecross is in the first place. So, my random thoughts will contain family and whatever else I am up to. I currently plan to be a 100% Cyclecross free blog. I need time to recover.

Well, enough about this as my first post comes to an end. I will leave you with a Deep thought by Jack Handey:

"I can still recall old Mister Barslow getting out every morning and nailing a fresh load of tadpoles to that old board of his. Then he'd spin it round and round like a wheel of fortune, and no matter where it stopped he'd yell out, "Tadpoles! Tadpoles is a winner!" We all thought he was crazy, But then, we had some growing up to do"