Saying Goodbye to 2011’s Most Annoying Things

I’ve made my list, checked it twice, and am fairly certain it’s complete.

Said list is composed of hot topics in 2011 that gained much, much more attention that I honestly felt they deserved – so much attention that they need to be forgotten and never spoken of ever again.

I now present them to you, in no particular order, along with brief explanations/personal comments. Here we go.

3dtv

3D TV: Right from the very get-go, I always felt that 3D TV was a gimmick. There’s no way anybody in their right mind would want to nor should sit in their own home wearing goofy, high-tech 3D glasses to watch movies or TV shows. Those glasses, by the way, can run up to $400 a pair – a bit much if you happen to leave them out and let the dog find them. It just seems like a way to try and sell the public on 3D movies in theaters, then get them to buy the film on Blu-ray once released. It’s a technological money grab clusterfuck that hasn’t caught on and probably never will.

bieber

Justin Bieber: What else is there to say? Can we do our best to make 2012 and each year forward Bieber-free?

carmageddon

Carmageddon: Here’s an explanation for those of you outside of the L.A. metro area. Carmageddon (as it was dubbed by the local media) was supposed to be the worst, most intolerable freeway closure in the history of forever. Taking place along one of the busiest stretches of the 405, the closure was required in order to repair one of the bridges along the Sepulveda Pass and as a result, residents in the area were actually urged to stay home that weekend. Jesus, even Ashton Kutcher tweeted about the closure. It was to be that bad.

The result? Absolutely nothing. The repairs were made in record time and traffic flowed around the area without all the forecasted gloom and doom. In fact, there were joggers and cyclists who took advantage of the closure by running and riding along the freeway. (They weren’t even cited, which was cool.) Carmageddon turned out to be a gigantic joke, and a spectacular example of how L.A. media can turn the smallest story into a potential nightmare.

firework

Katy Perry’s “Firework”: Much like Jimmy Eat World’s “The Middle” from years ago, this song seemed to be featured in every ‘tween movie and no matter where you went, you heard I playing. All that aside, “firework” just doesn’t sound right in singular form.

friday

Rebecca Black’s “Friday”: Yeah, we all know the story of how it happened. Now let’s erase the song, along with its off-brand crayon-quality lyrics, from our minds forever.

kardashians

The Kardashians: I would imagine that being famous for nothing carries a lot of weight with it. I wouldn’t know. But if these are the kinds of role models we’re letting today’s young women look up to, then wow, we really need to reassess our priorities. Thank [insert appropriate deity here] I have a boy.

occupy

Occupy [insert city of choice]: Okay, occupiers, I get it. You’re pissed off. Who isn’t these days? But pitching tents and waving signs in random city locations will do little if nothing to persuade the Big Bank president from walking down from his penthouse to hear you out. He wouldn’t even waste his time micturating upon you from there because there’s a chance he might get his stacks of $100 bills, the ones he uses to light his Cuban cigars, soiled. I do agree with you to a point but it seems like nothing has been, nor ever will be, accomplished.

planking

Planking: When I first heard of this planking, I thought it was somehow related to waterboarding because it just sounded like some kind of torture device. Turns out I was wrong – dead wrong. This weird yet stupid phenomenon involves a jackass who is willing to lie face-down in an unusual (more than likely, very conspicuous) place and another jackass who will take the picture for them. And for what? To post them online as part of some kind of idiotic game. And I thought people in the ‘50s were stupid when they would stuff telephone booths for fun.

rolling-in-deep

Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep”: This, along with the aforementioned Katy Perry song, ranks up there as one of the most overplayed, saturated songs of 2011. And if you think you heard it ad nauseam, try living two houses down from a neighbor whose daughter sang it for a show and rehearsed it continuously for about a week. For those reasons, I’d be perfectly happy if I never heard it again.

tebowing

“Tebowing”: Much like planking, I took this term to mean something entirely different when I first heard of it. Namely, I thought it was some kind of cruel bullying game that kids were playing in school since I heard some were and still are getting in trouble for it. But no, it turned out that Tebowing was named after NFL player Tim Tebow who has made a habit of kneeling and praying during each game. Ironically, and unfortunately, Tebowing might just be the next form of planking if this website has anything to do with it.

Well, that’s it. Now let’s never speak of any of them ever again.

And have a safe, happy, prosperous, and Bieber-free 2012.

Fantastic

"Hey, jerk! You work -- this boy's got better things to do!"

As a contract worker I am responsible for keeping track of my how hours via my staffing agency’s website. This also means that an honor system is followed as I “sign” and agree that the hours I input were indeed the hours I worked for the week.

Our timecards must be turned in no later than Monday so that payroll can be processed in a timely manner but this week, the boss was adamant that everybody turn theirs in ASAP because of out office shutdown the week of Christmas. The shutdown also affects our payroll processing and staffing agency as they are also shut down during the same week, hence the sense of urgency to get things done.

But turning in my timecard is never an issue for me because it’s my money, damnit. I have the staffing agency’s website open in a tab whenever I start Chrome; a constant reminder to turn in my card if I haven’t done so already.

That little plan worked. I came home sick on Friday and the first thing I did (before lying down on the couch and getting hopped-up on cold medications) was sign-in and submit my timecard so that next Thursday, which happens to be today, my Direct Deposit would go in. Done and done.

After submitting my timecard I will get an e-mail from the agency telling me if it has been approved or not and in most cases, it will be unless there is something dreadfully wrong on my end as there has been on a few occasions. I will get said e-mail early the following week, usually on Monday or late Tuesday.

This Monday came around and I got nothing. Tuesday – nothing. Wednesday is unusually late to get them but I held out, hoping I would get something.

I didn’t and being that nobody is around, I can’t do crap until Monday. Even then, it’ll take the braintrust to figure out what happened and unless their boss intervenes, who knows when I’ll get paid. I even placed a call to the staffing agency’s manager about my situation but it’s doubtful she is taking work-related calls this week.

Bloody fantastic. All the reminding, all the planning, all the stuff I do in order to be the responsible person to get my timecard turned in on time failed me. Blah.

The good thing is that I am working my part-time job tonight so I will have some cash by the end of the night, plus my pay from last week.

Other than that, it’s been a rather relaxing vacation. The weather’s been weird: 40s at night and practically double that during the day. I’m still fighting off the cold but have decided that it won’t stop me from riding my bike this Sunday.

I think I should be okay for that…unless I fall down go boom again…

UPDATE 12/30/11: I did get paid today. All is well.

If I Knew It Was This Easy…

The list of Anthony’s Christmas gifts was pretty extensive this year:

    • An Android tablet
    • Nintendo DSi XL Mario Kart bundle
    • Telescope
    • A pair of spy glasses that captures video and still images
    • Remote control car
    • Lots of clothes (which he was thrilled beyond belief to receive)
    • Angry Birds stuff that ranged from school supplies to clothing
    • Kinectimals game for Xbox 360
    003 lores

    Anthony takes Steve the Cat for a ride

    And even with all of that, what do you think he favors playing with the most?

    An empty cardboard box converted into an airplane with the tool set we got him. The “propeller” is an old toy he’s had since he was around 3 years old (he’s almost 8 now).

    I think my shopping list for Christmas 2012 is already done.

    I hope everyone had a nice holiday. I don’t go back to work until January 3rd which is cool because I’ve been fighting a cold or something and it just won’t go away. Kind of sucks to have this happen over my vacation but I’m doing my best to get better; I’m just extremely run down at the moment.

    By the way, this is the first time I think I’ve mentioned Steve the Cat, who we adopted after we put Ozzie to sleep earlier in the year. His original name was Tommy but it just didn’t seem to work for me. One day I just blurted out “Steve, knock that off!” and it stuck.

    So welcome to our lives, Steve the Cat. You don’t know what you’re in for 🙂

    Commenting Limitations

    Just for the sake of not drudging up a bunch of old crap from years ago, I’ve gone ahead and put a comment limitation of 60 days per post. This means that if the post is older than 60 days, commenting will no longer be allowed on it.

    This keeps things pretty topical since I still have people leaving comments on stuff I wrote a loooooong time ago. Half of the time I don’t even have a good recollection of the post or what prompted me to write it so this will help alleviate that issue.

    So if you’ve got something to say on a particular post, it will be alive for 60 days. After that…you’re out of luck, Junior Mint.

    Disconnected

    information_operatorsAs any of you who read my blog regularly might have noticed, I love my Virgin Mobile LG Optimus V. It’s my first smartphone and has really made things convenient: spur-of-the-moment photos and videos, checking account balances, email, games, music and yes, even the occasional phone call I place.

    This joy, however, was shattered a few weeks ago when I turned it on and got this dreaded message:

    The process com.android.phone has stopped unexpectedly.

    I figured this was not a good thing since I couldn’t even navigate through the menus without the message popping up at least every 5 seconds. Seriously, it was that bad.

    I went online to look for some solutions and did find a page that offered some potential solutions but sadly, none of them worked. And being that we don’t have a home phone number and use Skype instead, it was of paramount importance that I have my cell phone in working order.

    That said, the time had come: I had to call Virgin Mobile Tech Support which, as those of you who have dealt with them in the past know, is more often than not an extremely unpleasant experience in which nothing is ever accomplished.

    But much to my surprise, this time was nothing like that.

    I was helped by a pleasant rep that, while still sounding like she was reading from The Big Book of Answers, did a great job in assisting me with the problem. After giving her the gist of things, she told me to navigate through a few menus and restart the phone and then a whole plethora of alternatives, all of which did nothing to alleviate the problem.

    Then the Hail Mary was called: I was told I had to wipe the phone’s memory clean of everything except the Android OS. (For future reference, hold down the Power + Home + Volume Down buttons on the Optimus V at the same time to access the reset menus. It’s pretty self-explanatory at that point but this is only recommended if NOTHING else has worked. Read on.)

    The menu, looking like a slightly upgraded version of MS-DOS, only had a few selections on it that I was told to choose. After choosing both required selections, the phone went blank for about 30 seconds, restarted, and was back to its factory-fresh settings after about a minute. Even the ugly red wallpaper came back.

    Once it was determined that phone was functional and error-free, I had to reactivate it which I did in the same call. All in all, it took around 30 minutes to solve the issue which meant that I was 30 minutes late to work that day. This incident happened just as I was leaving the house.

    Then the fun of reinstalling apps began and despite having them all on my microSD card, they were wiped clean and I had to download all of them again.

    With the time it took to download all of them, you would think of this as a bad thing, wouldn’t you? It actually turned out to be good.

    As you know, the Optimus V is extremely limited on internal memory (unless you screw around with it and risk turning it into a brick which I am not willing to do). As such, I had to constantly be shifting around or deleting apps in order to preserve space on my phone in order for it to…well, work. It was a real hassle and downright frustrating.

    But with the phone crashing, I didn’t even look back at my download history with Amazon’s Appstore or Android Market. Instead, I only downloaded what I knew I used on a regular basis and didn’t bother with those I couldn’t remember. The bottom line is that I now have my essential apps with about 30MB internal memory remaining, whereas I used to have around 20MB which gets you into trouble if you’re not careful. It even gave me enough extra space to try some other apps I had wanted to try but never had the memory to run.

    As far as Contacts go, I had them backed-up in my Google account and only had to replace a few once I synced my Gmail account. Additionally, I didn’t lose one photo, video, or music file on my microSD card.

    I wouldn’t go so far as to say this wasn’t so bad because it was a major headache having to reinstall everything. But in the end, considering I’ve got a decent amount of memory left, the hassle seemed to be worth the effort.