Lose weight and HartzVictims.org

Just in time for the holiday season. Folks, listen up. I’ve found the way to cut down on the consumption of sweets. Here’s the secret:

1) With two determined bites, place a 0.6 oz. (17g) snack size Hershey’s milk chocolate bar in your mouth.
2) While chewing your chocolate, clean a double-occupancy cat litter box.

It’s that easy! I just did it. I wonder if that would qualify me to have my own wee-hours infomercial…

I’m still walking to work. It was cold today. We have three vehicles right now and I’m walking to work. I still really enjoy the walk. We’re taking the Trooper to Mom and Dad’s this weekend to clean it up, slap a For Sale sign on it and leave it. Hopefully someone out there in the country could go for a late-80’s model Trooper.

Before I forget – and while I have cat poo on the brain – I’ve setup a site for Hartz Advanced Flea and Tick drops victims: http://www.janicek.com/hartz. The response has been positive thus far. It looks like I’ll be getting some backing for this project. I have one guy who said he would donate a substantial amount. By substantial I mean his donation will pay for the site to be up for at least one year!!! I’m pretty excited about this project. Hopefully next week I’ll be able to purchase the domain and contact the media.

Just picked up the Jeep

Christmas came early for Elise this year. We just picked up her Jeep. We’re both excited. She and I just got back from driving around aimlessly for a few hours. Wish we could find a pasture where we could do some off-roading.

It’s nice having a stereo again. The Trooper’s CD player was broken back in February. Since then we’ve been using a jambox that gets power from our handy AC/DC converter box. The stereo the Jeep came with has a tape deck. Hmmmm… tapes. Remember those? We still have tapes but they’re just so archaic and inconvenient nowadays. I’ve been pricing CD/CD-RW/mp3 players – we’ll have to wait a while before we invest in one.

If anyone is interested, we’re putting a For Sale sign on the Trooper next week – e-mail me.

CKY, Audioslave

Out of habit, I set my alarm last night. I was awaken by the soothing sounds of Camp Kill Yourself on the radio at 6:30 a.m. I couldn’t tell if I was dreaming or not – I finally woke up and said “damn”. I rolled over and looked at Elise. I told her they were playing CKY on the radio now. Looks like I’m going to be getting sick of a good band soon.

I went to get my ears lowered this morning. While waiting for my turn, I picked up the most recent issue of Rolling Stone magazine. I read up on Audioslave, the Chris Cornell and ex-Rage Against the Machine members’ powerband. I’m downloading the entire album now. Good stuff. I’m glad there’s some good rearing its ugly head.

Riley’s Halloween

I was hoping to provide a video for this entry but with all of the other hooplah going on in my life [nothing], I just haven’t had time to capture and edit the footage. Plus I’m tying to conserve server space for other stuff [nothing].

So I’m now two weeks and one day late in relaying the events of Halloween. I don’t remember all of the details as I have been smoking a lot of illy and subjecting myself to extreme femur mutilation by a 9″ muffin tin in an internal quest to find a way to make my tear duct stop squeaking.

If I remember correctly, Halloween fell on a Thursday this year. It was no out-of-the-ordinary Thursday. I walked home from work, turned on the computer in hopes that I would find the enlightenment that couldn’t be found in my previous nine hours of staring at a computer monitor. I walked into the dining area of our apartment and decided it was time to put away the bottle of charcoal lighter flood that had been sitting by the patio door.

I acquired this bottle of HEB brand lighter fluid from a coworker. Said combustible liquid had been sitting in my cubicle at work for months. I had finally decided to bring it home a week prior. Nobody told me that I should take the lighter fluid home, but I thought it was probably a good idea seeing how I’m the Marketing Communications/Market Research Fire Marshal [seriously].

Anyway, I opened the patio door, stepped out onto the patio and opened the little patio closet that contains charcoal, lighter fluid, water heater and a water hose. I put the lighter fluid in the closet, shut the door, walked into the apartment and shut the patio door. Think there’s going to be fire, right? No – nothing that good. Though I probably should take the lighter flood out of an enclosed area that is used primarily to generate heat for our potable water. I’ll have to look into that in my continuing education Fire Marshal curriculum.

Elise came home from work. Friends came on and Elise watched that in the living room. I was making dinner or on the computer or something. We simultaneously noticed that we hadn’t seen Riley in a while. We both took notice of Annie looking curiously at the fireplace. After muting the television, we could hear Riley meowing from the fireplace.

Riley’s always had a fascination with the fireplace.

He wasn’t actually in the fireplace. After closer audio inspection, we determined that our cat had somehow climbed up the chimney. I went into the bedroom patio’s closet and retrieved a flood light. I also pulled out the Hitachicam as I knew this was going to turn out to be something weird.

I shined the light all the way up the chimney but couldn’t see Riley. I called his name and could hear him up at the very top. Remember Baby Jessica? Well, we were in a similar situation, only upside down. Our chimney is pretty narrow, I’d say maybe 20″ in circumference. I knew it could be possible for him to climb up, but how was he going to get down? He couldn’t reverse his claws to allow himself to paw his way down. A fatal nosedive was immanent.

I ran outside [leaving the camera aimed at the fireplace] and tried to determine a way to climb onto our roof. The ledge and gutters of our building would allow no such thing. I thought and thought and thought. Only one thing we could do… call the fire department.

Elise called the fire department. Fire departments are supposed to come get your kitty out of a tree, right? Nope.

“Git yerselves a can uh tuna or sum of thim sardeeens and put em in the farplace. Leave a light in der too, yer cat’ll come down soon.” – Temple Fire Department – honest truth.

I walked outside one more time. I had to think fast. I had to be the manly hero. I had to save the day. Elise came outside, close to a panic. She suggested that we go to Wal-Mart and buy a ladder. I told her that we didn’t have time for that. As trick-or-treaters walked past, I asked any accompanying parents if they owned or knew of a place where I could acquire a ladder. Nothing.

I thought and thought and thought. I decided to go back into the apartment and see if there was a way that I could get onto the roof by means of one of our balconies.

As I entered the front door, I remembered the lighter fluid. I remember opening the patio closet’s door. I remember Riley following me outside. Over an hour had passed since I had put away the lighter fluid.

I walked outside, opened the patio closet door and out strutted Riley.

The patio closet is right behind the fireplace, hence us hearing our cat from what sounded like the chimney. Hilarity ensued.

Vidbook closed one year ago today

One year ago today, Vidbook, Inc. closed its doors. It’s really hard to believe that it’s already been a whole year. What happened on that day proved that yours truly would be facing trying times.

On September 11th, terrorists attacked America. Eleven days later, Elise and I became newlyweds. 52 days later, I was out of a job.

I remember that day vividly. The remaining six of us worked a 9-6 day. We all knew that this day was coming, but we kept working hard for our boss. Deep down, we all hoped that something would turn for the better.

I always took a late lunch, usually around 2 p.m. I would ride my motorcycle to our apartment in the ghetto, eat a turkey sandwich, some pretzels and watch daytime talk shows. It was my ritual. I would return to work a little after 3 and try to finish whatever project I was working on.

One year ago today I walked back into the office after a nice ride. The weather was just like it is today, sunny and in the mid-70’s. I opened the door to suite 103 and Julie, our office manager looked up at me and said “Grab a box!” At first I thought she was asking for help in moving something heavy as I was the only remaining male who wasn’t of the managerial sort.

I saw everyone else with boxes, packing up their desks. It took many “You’re kidding, right?” inquiries before I was convinced that I wouldn’t be coming to work the next day.

I took off my jacket, held on to the collar and dragged it behind me as I wandered aimlessly around what used to be where I worked. I walked into the president’s office where he was sipping a beer and talking to our CPA. I shook his hand and said “Thanks for everything… I’m sorry it didn’t work out.”

He told me he was also sorry. He also to me that I was talented and to keep up the good work. That made me feel a little better – but not a lot – I was out of a job. I was one of the countless lay offs from a dot-com bomb.

Later I followed suit and packed up all of my stuff [mostly toys]. I emailed everyone that I knew and told them what had just happened.

The people who had become my friends and were now my former coworkers and I decided to drown our sorrows. We did just that. I think we started the night at Baby A’s on Barton Springs. We celebrated joining the not-so-elite Silicon Hills unemployment chapter. We talked about when each of us would start our job search. A few of us talked about starting our own business together. In the end, we all just wound up two sheets to the wind, confused and relieved.

I neglected to inform my new bride about my current unemployed status. I didn’t do it intentionally. She came home from work to find 20 minutes worth of messages on our answering machine from people expressing their sympathy.

That was a Tuesday. I called the Texas Workforce Commission on Wednesday and started drawing unemployment. I took the rest of the week off. I started my job search on Saturday. Three months later, I had a new job.

I wish we had never left Austin. We both miss it more than you can imagine…

Karyn’s free, Annie’s home, Jeep shopping

Decent day thusfar: It’s not Monday, I’ve lost 10 pounds, Karyn Bosnick is now debt free and Annie came home last night.

Elise and I test drove a nice, 2001 Jeep Wrangler Sport last night. Mr. Andy over at the dealership is trying to nickel and dime me. He’s doing that stupid, car-dealer-won’t-budge-on-seventy dollars thing. I told him to then waive the “documentation fee”. I would hate to be a car dealer. I’m really tempted to get this dude all worked up and then tell him I’m going to take my business somewhere else.

Work sucks, bike runs

Just got back from a meeting where we reviewed our department’s employee satisfaction survey. Very, very, very sad. Not that I’m saying anything bad about where I work. I love where I work… I love the people I work with… I work at the best place in the whole world… I can’t say anything negative about where I work because I wouldn’t want to give the institution a bad name. I’ve already gotten in trouble for that. I really can’t say what was revealed by the survey, I’ll just say that it was really bad.

We had a nice but short weekend. We had to wake up early on Friday so I could drive Elise to work and then take Annie to the vet for spaying. I picked Annie up after work and brought her home. I let her out of the cat carrier so she could get something to eat or go hide under the bed so she could recuperate. I played a little PS2 and watched some TV.

Elise agreed to shoot another wedding on Saturday. She attended the rehearsal in Killeen after work on Friday. I picked her up around 8. We came home, I cooked pizza, we watched a movie and went to bed.

We woke up early on Saturday. I drove around looking for a garage sale that didn’t exist. I opened all the windows in the apartment as the weather was so nice. The afternoon flew by and we had to start getting ready for the wedding.

We had to be at Ft. Hood by 2:30 so Elise could be prepared to take pictures. Elise’s coworker, Daviann was the bride. Just before we had the Trooper inspected at the gate of Ft. Hood, Elise realized that she had forgotten her flash. I raised holy hell as I agreed to drive back to Temple to get her flash for her. I was really mad. Half way home I realized that I would miss out on the ceremony. I figured that that wasn’t too bad. My mood changed for the better.

I got back to Ft. Hood just in time to catch Elise taking pictures of the bride and groom outside of the church. We drove to the Officers’ Club where the reception was held. Though small, the reception was nice. The food was good and everyone we met was friendly.

After Elise took all of the necessary pictures, she allowed herself to have a little fun. I had the DJ play ‘our song’ and we danced. We talked about the both of us getting more serious about wedding photography. I have a few college hours of photography under my belt and would be more than willing to act as my wife’s [paid] assistant. We have some really good ideas – stuff we need to work on.

Prior to getting ready for the wedding, we needed to fish Annie out from underneath the bed and administer her pain medication. She really didn’t like having a pill shoved down her throat. She illustrated her discontent by walking out onto the balcony and jumping off the edge. She hasn’t come back. I saw her last night standing next to my motorcycle, but then ran off.

The weekend before last I paid over $100 in vet bills. This past Friday I paid $90+ in vet bills. I think the cat got the better deal. She doesn’t really like humans, so she made the escape. I’m mad because we spent $200 on her, Elise is mad at me because I never really liked the cat. Oh well, maybe she’ll come back one day.

We picked up the trusty Shadow yesterday. Elise and I went into Austin yesterday morning. We stopped at Rudy’s for lunch and went Jeep shopping. We found a couple that we like. Hopefully we’ll be getting one soon.

I walked to work this morning. I have a drivable motorcycle, but I enjoy the walk to work so much that I’m going to keep walking.


I finally got the trusty Shadow’s front tire fixed. This actually happened on Saturday.

Philip came up on Friday night. We ate at El Chico for dinner and went back to my place and watched Camp Kill Yourself videos.

I woke up at 6:30 a.m. on Saturday and hit a couple garage sales. I scored some junk. I was hoping to make a little money on eBay, but doesn’t look like that’s going to happen. Who knows… I’ve only put one item up for sale thus far.

Elise went to get her haircut at 11. Philip and I loaded my bike onto his truck and headed to Austin. It was raining and cold outside. We looked like a couple monkeys fondling a football while trying to unload my bike at the shop.

$231 later, the Shadow is ready to go. We loaded it back into Philip’s truck [too cold and rainy to ride – plus I didn’t bring my helmet or rain gear] and went to his apartment. We watched Mr. Deeds and I tried to nap on the couch.

We watched UT beat Nebraska, then headed over to Tommy’s. Elise showed up shortly after we arrived. We left Tommy’s around 2 a.m.

Elise and I slept in on Sunday. We ate pizza. We discussed existentialism in general and the orbit patterns of Jupiter’s satellites.

Monday was a typical Monday.

We didn’t vote on Tuesday. I went to HEB halfway into The Bachelor. Elise really needs a new car. The Trooper is making some really funny noises and I’d like to get rid of it before the rear axel falls off. I picked up the recent issue of Auto Trader. There are quite a lot of Jeeps in there. Hopefully we’ll have saved up enough cash in a couple months to make our purchase.

On Wednesday I received an e-mail asking about putting streaming video on the S&W Intranet. Hopefully I’ll get to work on that soon.

This Saturday Elise is photographing another wedding. We need to go to Philip’s to pick up my bike. I’m going to put a For Sale sign on it this weekend. If any one is interested… $3,200 for a black 1998 Honda Shadow VT 750 A.C.E.


I have an e-mail address, spam at janicek dot com. I use that e-mail address whenever I’m required to sign up for something. I used my webmaster account when I took a few certification tests at BrainBench. I think they sold my e-mail address. Oh well…

I really like the P.S. on this peice of finely crafted spam. “Instead of writing us a hateful e-mail requesting that you be taken off our list immediately, just kindly respond and tell us that you never want to hear from us again. In doing so, we’ll send you helpful information on how to make money fast, how to clean up your credit and how to maintain an erection!”

Subject: janicek.com
From: Diane Emmerson
Date: Tue, November 5, 2002 6:47 am
To: webmaster

I discovered janicek.com in Yahoo, my favorite search engine. I am requesting that you create a link from janicek.com to my client’s web site if you feel that their content is in some way related or complements your site. In exchange, I’ll post a link from their site to yours.

Exchanging links will help bring in more business for both your web site and my client’s. An added benefit is increased search engine traffic because the search engines rank sites higher that have a good number of relevant links.

This is not a free-for-all link exchange, I don’t waste my time with them and you shouldn’t either. I am only linking to related web sites so that all my links are relevant to my site.

I would like to send you my client’s web address, so that you can review their site. Home Loan Advisor is a service for consumers who are searching for the ideal mortgage. Consumers are matched up with a local mortgage professional who is an expert in providing the best available mortgage programs.

Please let me know if you are interested in exchanging links. I’ll send you more details once I hear back from you.

Looking forward to your reply.

Diane Emmerson
[email protected]

P.S. If for any reason you don’t want me to contact again, just email me and let me know.

Josh’s Jym

I got out of bed this morning and headed for the bathroom. Upon approaching the loo, I caught my reflection in the vanity mirror. I stopped and gave myself a once over. I examined my profile. I can tell that I’ve lost a little weight.

I’m the sort of person who craves more physical activity once I get the ball a rollin’. For example, every day after I walk home from work, I always want to go back outside and run or lift weights. I don’t have running shoes or weights. I really want some running shoes.

I started thinking about my days at the country club. We had great benefits there. We had the option to receive a discounted membership to World’s Gym. $5 a month. You can’t beat that.

In spite of the great price, I didn’t want a gym membership. I don’t swing on swanky public gyms. Joey, one of my coworkers convinced me to sign up for a gym membership with him. He told me that we would go all the time. I believed him because he looked as if he had done his fair share of bench presses. We never went. We were motivated the first couple weeks, but there was always a conflict in our schedules. I didn’t want to go to the gym by myself because, well, I guess I thought I would embarrass myself.

A lot of other people signed up for gym memberships as well. They never went. I eventually transferred my membership to another coworker.

I’m convinced that most people [your standard, out-of-shape American who means well and would like to improve their overall physical health] purchase gym memberships and never go.

I think I’m going to find the local support group: “Heavy-set and Unmotivated” and offer discounted memberships to Josh’s Jym. I wouldn’t even need to setup shop.

Religious Friday Five

1. Were you raised in a particular religious faith?
No. I went to Sunday School for a little while when I was a wee lad. My parents [both raised Catholic] left me with the choice. I decided that I didn’t like church, so they didn’t make me go. I’m not Baptized.
2. Do you still practice that faith? Why or why not?
Yes – in my own conscious, meditative way. I believe more in science and evolution. I’m agnostic [noncommittal].
3. What do you think happens after death?
I’m not sure. Heaven, Hell, purgatory and reincarnation
4. What is your favorite religious ritual (participating in or just observing)?
Lighting black candles and sacrificing goats? Not dying? Going to church on Christmas eve with Elise because it makes her happy.
5. Do you believe people are basically good?
Unfortunately, yes.