Thursday, December 30, 2010

2010 Year in Review-Even Google likes us

As the final post for our year in review, I offer this as  the one that still seems to generate interest. 

I asked the nerds in the idiot FTI IT dept (the most reviled department here at FTI) to determine which of our posts had any type of long-term "traction".   I was trying to see which post generated the most internet traffic.    One particular post stood out and constantly came up in searches by the various search engines on the internet.  In asking how this result occurred, I was told that "a key metric of measuring visits and readership are utilized in embedded code  in the language that produces this page by the Blogger People whom host our site."  TRANSLATION:   There's some cool stuff that tracks all of this shit. 

My journey to the Coachella valley this past spring and this ensuing episode seems to repeatedly come up in search engine results.  But don't take my word for it.  Google the phrase "women attracted to authority figures"  and see who pops up in the number 2 position out of 302,000 results.  That's right. This one!  Oh yeah.  Uh-huh. We got it. 

Ending the year on a high note, I thank both of our 2 faithful readers for your support in this past year, best wishes for the New Year and the constant encouragement to continue on working on the 12 steps to attain  idiocy independence.     Take it from an authority figure:  We developed the program.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

2010 Year in Review- the saga continues

Continuing the recitation of meaningless thoughts and observations that would be of significance to most people, I submit these 2 points of light as examples best not to mimic from this past year.  The reader should be admonished, though, that these actually look easy, we here at FTI are trained professionals with only the rudimentary of understanding.  The fact that these even accidentally occurred is still being studied. 

1)   Having the utmost confidence that we have the right people in the places, I am still concerned that Mrs. Kfred refuses to be a willing member of the FTI Executive team. Without prior knowledge, she was appointed Chief Safety Officer here at the Institute, but, occasionally refuses to embrace the importance of it all.  I view this incident as perhaps a wake-up call for her to take her duties seriously.

2)   The constant quest to be relevant, eye-catching, and yes, fun to visit, were the main ingredients when our page change of identity was undertaken.  Actually quite pleased with the results, this switch was not taken lightly and without debate. A faction of the page change committee openly pouted for 3 days after having lost in their bid to have the page consist of nothing but an image of a knotted shoelace.  Something about the ability to neatly convey thoughts and ideas without tripping over own own logic.  Losers.   

And tomorrow, we will revisit the incident that continues to generate the most amazement and doubt of all: my journey to the Coachella Valley and the Giant Carrot Festival, therein. 

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

2010 Year in review - Pt. 1

Like most other information sources, we here at FTI choose to use this end of the year calendar period  as a time to reflect upon some memorable events during that time.  As opposed to having our 2 faithful readers vote on anything, I, as Executive Director have determined a formula on which stories to highlight:  Knowing that even our 2 faithful readers only check in here about twice a month, I felt a more subjective method of determining some memorable stories would be to judge the stories based on the comments they generated at the time.  Obviously, the comment process is used more often than not as a forum by a couple of our own staff members (one, a  particular, disgruntled, small minded, fiscally "conservative" individual; the other, a known idiot with multiple personalities)  to take "potshots' at me to satisfy their small intellects.  Regardless,   I choose to remain above the fray and post 'em like I see 'em. 

Without any further adieu, I offer these 2 related subject stories with my own views: 

1)  Isn't it amazing how people are so drawn to the subject of internal health and view it as a joke or obvious sign of aging?  "Oh, yeah, I had that done 2 years ago and I came out  'pffffffft............clean as whistle.'  Doc even gave me some pictures  too.   Just wait.   Yep, you know you are getting old when you schedule that appointment".    I'm sorry.  I consider this milestone as nothing more than getting your eyes checked.  Granted, it is a little more invasive in a more private area of your body, but,  I don't see anyone walking around with eyeglasses on their butt,  either.  Each part of the body has a job to do; this one just happened to be last in line when God handed out the assignments.

2) Thinking that relaying this tidbit would put some reader's minds to ease, I get the feeling that the full appreciation for the danger I expose myself to on a daily basis is not always fully recognized.  I can't worry about that perception, however,  My job is to do the best I can with the tools at my disposal.  And believe me, most of our staff are tools.

I have a few more to list as the week progresses.  In the meantime, I am working on planning for 2011.  Hopefully, these times can be viewed as  our all time low water marks.   


Monday, December 27, 2010

May the rhythm of the season dance through your soul

Following my post 10 days or so ago about the lack of meaningful Christmas cards arriving here at FTI, I was speaking to Gummo, the Balloon Boy whom asked if I had received his holiday greeting.  Gummo informed me that Christmas was a special time to him and that he had taken the time to create a personalized greeting specifically for me  that best reflected his personality, hobbies, dress, and demeanor in such a manner that would accurately reflect  his true being.

Sure enough, right on cue, the next day, I open the mailbox and find the card pictured here with a "Merry Christmas, Gummo" signature.   Immediately submitted to the  crack staff of the FTI Psychological  Profile unit, our team of experts were initially baffled by this card and it's meaning until a late night, "We're out of vodka.  How about mouthwash?  Do you have any of that?" breakthrough occurred that explained Gummo perfectly.  The untrained lay person would assume that Gummo is attempting a cheap ripoff of the Saturday Night Fever franchise.  Deeper analysis, however, reveals the true meaning of this person and his personality:  Gummo is a well dressed, elf-like adventurer/4th place finisher in a 3rd grade spelling bee fleeing the impending giant disco ball  about to crush him ala Indiana Jones while playing hopscotch.  And that, Ladies and Gentlemen, explains everything perfectly. 

Sunday, December 26, 2010

It's Christmas Sunday

Hey c'mon, it's Christmas Sunday and tough enough to get this group to think during the week. The Misfits are still enthralled with the pieces of string and couple of paperclips they received for Christmas. I can't seem to gain their attention.

In the meantime, take a look here and see if any of these days old items are to your liking.  Like most places, our admonishments are the same:  "Take as much as you want, read all that you take".

Our giant after-Christmas clearance postings begins tomorrow (you know, the one's no one wanted to read in the first place). See you then.

Friday, December 24, 2010

'Twas the Night Before Christmas

'Twas the night before Christmas, and all ‘round the ‘tute
The dimwits were sleeping, the sight is not cute.
The restraints were hung by the chimney with care,
It’s for their own safety and general welfare;

The misfits were locked in their dormitory with beds,
They’re really no more than slow-thinking pinheads;
And Mrs Kfred in her 'kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled down for a long winter's nap,
When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.

I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.
He’d be the one to visit our mentally sick.
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called the dimwits by name;
"Now, Freako! now, Gummo! and Dickie the Peap!
Wake up you slow whacko’s; you need no more sleep!

And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof,
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
He knew of these idiots I suffer each day,
He couldn’t believe I had chosen to stay.

As I drew in my head, and was turning around,
Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.
He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot;
Some brand new straightjackets he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread;

He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
Replacing old tethers with an all knowing smirk,
He knew the great burden I constantly bear,
Sometimes I think, "I’m in a giant daycare,"

"Now Kfred," he boomed, “Don’t Worry, Don’t fuss,
All people have seen them aboard the short bus,
Most readers know they are all mental midgets,
Their collective IQ is but one single digit”,

And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose;
He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.

But I heard him exclaim, 'ere he drove out of sight,
“I’m glad I’m not you:  None of those idiots seem right!”

(with profuse apologies to Clement Clarke Moore)

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Maybe they will call her Slate-arina

Certainly not quite as meaningful as the birth of the baby Jesus, but, every bit as much to be considered  a "miracle" considering the participant, it is with great joy we announce the birth of Slateface's new daughter. Slateface sent me a text message/photo yesterday that had been taken in the early morning hours before with his new daughter.  Both Mother and child are doing fine.

I have mixed feelings about this event. Certainly, the young child is an innocent being that will have every chance and opportunity to become whatever she chooses to do in life raised in a loving and stable home. She will, however, be saddled with the burden of having lineage traced directly back to a known idiot who has some strange ideas about  fun and playing outside. God help the little Princess.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

"And I held his penis!"

I had Christmas lunch with Dickey the Peap last week.  We have conducted this meeting  for the past 4 years or so as a method to both celebrate the Christmas Season and a chance to get lit up on a weekday afternoon (which neither of us do on a regular basis).   As I had duties pending back at Dilbertland on the day in question, I was not able to celebrate quite as hardily as I had hoped .  Additionally,  the little miser was under close orders to control himself as a similar outing earlier this fall resulted in both parties experiencing some faint memory lapses in regard to particular incidents on the afternoon in question, so, restraint was evident on both sides of the table.  (Ladies and Gentlemen of the Jury:  I submit this key fact will be instrumental in your determination of authenticity at the conclusion of this posting).    For the record:  Dickey DID buy lunch.  There. It's official and a matter of public record.  I don't want to hear any whining or face any smarmy comments.  The short-armed one paid.  Reluctantly.  Slowly.  Hesitatingly.  Something about having extra funds after a relative/close friend hired Dickey to do some home remodel work.  And as everyone knows:  Friends and family pay double.    

As we were trading stories and insults, we reminisced about earlier experiences in our lifetimes.  Dickey was describing an earlier camping trip he took as a teenager with another friend of his.  Backpacking deep into the woods with nothing but a few staples, a backpack, and their wits, survival would be a test.   During the course of their adventure and returning to camp from a successful fishing trip,  young Dickey  happened upon a  young, male deer that had wandered into their camp. Our boy now decides that some venison stew sounds mighty appealing and that in order to have a tasty stew of this type, you need one particular key ingredient:  venison.  Armed with only a .22 rifle and without any hesitation, ol' Dickey Crockett drew the weapon, drops his pouch of $20 gold pieces to the ground as their sheer weight would affect his aim, flipped the tail on his 'coonskincap to the back of his head, draws a bead on poor defenseless Bambi, and blasts away.   (At this point in the recitation, I ask you, the reluctant reader, to pause for one moment and envision a deer in your mind in a geometric fashion.  A deer is basically a rectangle supported by four spindly sticks.   You would be hard pressed to hit anything but the big rectangle if you were to aim and fire at this shape.)    The resultant outcome is that old Deadeye shot the deer squarely--in the leg.  Bambi is now hopping around, bewildered, disoriented, and pissed off.  Young Fudd eventually stalks the wounded beast and finishes off the animal.  At this point, he  realizes that he has a quandary:  What do you do now?   Fortunately, Dickey's camping partner has some experience with field dressing an animal killed under such circumstances.  The intestines of the animal can be easily stripped by exiting  through the anal area of the beast. Great care must be made not to puncture the intestine so as not to ruin the meat.  With that in mind, the hunting companion began to expertly make the cuts necessary to avoid any contamination.  Logistics, however, required an extra set of hands in order to complete the task.  Based on the information you, the gentle reader, have surmised to this point I will leave to you to determine the level of participation and area of the animal that involved the assistance of  the Frugal One.

In the end (pun unintended), it seems to me that any future re-telling of this story would emphasize the appreciation for the freshness of the meat, the thrill of the sighting, or the luck in encountering an animal under these circumstances.  Instead, I have a feeling that this milestone serves only as the foundation for the name from which  Dickey was previously known:  Groper.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

r u kidn?

I received an email notification yesterday from the good folks over at Twitter. The message informed me that "Cheru Jackson wants to keep up with you on Twitter". I don't use Twitter and I don't know any Cheru Jackson. I'm not sure if Cheru is male or female. Obviously, Cheru has not read the information in the "About FTI" tab located at the top of this page.  For either of our 2 loyal readers and the accidental reader whom may stumble our direction, here is some info from Twitters own page:  Twitter is a real-time information network that connects you to the latest information about what you find interesting.  At the heart of Twitter are small bursts of information called Tweets. Each Tweet is 140 characters in length.   Simply find the public streams you find most compelling and follow the conversations.  You can actually follow someone in real time as they announce to the world that they are standing in the toilet paper aisle at their local grocery store dithering whether to buy the normal 1 ply brand  or step up for an extra 60 cents and buy 2 ply.  It's that easy.  Okay, I made that last part up. 

I don't know quite what to think. Is this another ploy similar to the one that Jemma Clark was trying to pull earlier this year?  Is this someone I know who recently changed their legal name and forgot to inform me of their new identity?  I have a deep suspicion that Cheru is, in fact, an agent at a competitive Institute attempting to attain some type of inside information on us here at FTI. Honestly, as we attempt to toil in the utmost anonymity in order to avoid ridicule, I don't think we have to announce to the world our every move. And who would want to follow it anyway? Upon reflection, though, I realize there may be some folks whom simply don't have a life. (I, as Executive Director here at FTI, seem to be in charge of a bunch of them.) They have no need to better themselves.  They actually want to see someone else fail. I get it. So let me attempt to make a "tweet":

Gummo, tBB & DtP r lame.  both wanna pony 4 xmas.   we can't have any more animals.  R  rules limit # of equine.  we  alrdy have asses. 

Sunday, December 19, 2010

it's Sunday Brunch

Hey c'mon, it's Sunday and tough enough to get this group to think during the week. We get a day off too, you know. I'm taking the staff out to Brunch. Every time one of the Misfits say, do, or think something stupid, they have to put a dollar in the jar. We call it our Brunch fund. And as far as I can forecast, there's going to be a lot of Sunday meals.

Just like Sunday Brunch, most of the stuff here is overvalued, pre-cooked, and have already been sneezed on  by some snotty 6 year old kid.  But, go ahead:  take a look here and see if any of these days old items are to your liking.  Like most places, our admonishments are the same:  "Take as much as you want, read all that you take".

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Not a Creature Was Stirring

As we increasingly  receive fewer and fewer Christmas cards from friends, acquaintances, and state regulatory agencies each year, I have chalked it up to the fact that times have changed. Technology in the form of email, video chat, almost free cellular time, Twitter, and the like have allowed people to become in constant communication with each other across the globe. 

As this is only our second year in existence here at the Institute, I thought perhaps we should reach out and attempt to send a meaningful message to our constituents via a classy, thoughtful type of greeting and assigned my normally reliable and dependable Trusty/Asst. Executive Director, Giacommo, to fulfill the task.  I left it up to him to find the appropriate artwork and suggested that the message we wished to convey was that even though times are tough, the  Christmas Spirit was certainly not dead and we wished all of our recipients Happy Holidays. Somewhere in our communication of my intent, a short circuit occurred and my here-to-fore Golden Boy thought I said that the Christmas Spirit was dead and to wish everyone Happy Holidays.  Imagine my shock and surprise when I found a couple of leftover unaddressed cards pictured above in the FTI Mail Center.  Inside, the verse of  "No Matter how hard times get,  the freezer is full of venison; Wishing You the Warmest of Christmas Wishes, Your Friends at FTI."

Giacommo is currently on loan to the people  over at Hallmark.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Edukation at it's finest

I note that spell check is now going to be allowed for public school students in the state of Oregon in order to complete the mandated writing tests as required by the state. Obviously, there is controversy on both sides of the issue as one side is saying that spelling shouldn’t be used as the measuring stick to determine a student’s ability to write. The other side is saying that allowing this tool will not increase the competiveness of the student as they get older and start to compete for jobs in the adult world and have to submit written reports, logs, or other bits of information in relation to their employment.

Fortunately our cheap-assed Board of Directors recognized this threat early on and provided me with a tool to combat this prevalent problem: a dictionary. I just need them now to get me some type of tool to detect and eliminate the possibility of having too many Misfits associated with us at any one time. I’m thinking an oversized butterfly net.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The Wheels of Justice Turn, Oh, So Slowly

Two continuing legal obligations have taken up much of my time as Executive Director here at FTI, and as a result, I have been remiss in reciting the daily points of idiocy that I am in charge of to this point. At the end of yesterday, a new page has been turned in the chapter of the continuing FTI novel and we can now move on. The FTI legal defense team has done an outstanding job in parrying with our legal opponents and I commend them for a job well done. One of the cases involved actual direct testimony from me on the behalf of one of our team members, so, I was actually involved with determining the victorious outcome. I will relay that experience here today and discuss the other case in an upcoming posting.

I accompanied our resident thrift-miser, Dickey the Peap, to court yesterday to act as a character witness in his defense over a small traffic infraction. Dickey's personal vehicle had been involved in a red light running incident which resulted in a photo ticket mailed to his house as the owner of the vehicle caught on camera. The law in our jurisdiction assumes that since it's your car, it must be you driving it. Of all of the Peap-ed one's various character traits (frugal, cheap, closefisted, miserly, parsimonious, penny-pinching, penurious, pinching, spare, stinting, tight, tightfisted, etc), he is not dishonest.   Dickey had not driven the car in question and was, in fact, not the person responsible.  He requested his day in court to present his case.  In formulating his defense earlier, the scrimping one had planned to plead an ignorance defense.  (EDITORS NOTE:  This type of defense was actually written for our membership and has been apparently exploited for a number of years based on the action of these nitwits in the past.) With the assistance of the results that had been independently confirmed by the Factorcrap Truthometer Deluxe, (which were accepted by the court) and my expert witness credibility, the charge was overturned and the penalty vacated. 

The Perry Mason moment of the whole incident:   The prosecution's entire case revolved around the alleged infraction occurring at an intersection of a downtown corner where the bank is located with limited parking.  The judge rightly realized after my testimony that the Peap-ed one could not have possible been driving the vehicle in question to the bank.  The bank won't validate for free parking.     

Sunday, December 12, 2010

It's Sunday Brunch

Hey c'mon, it's Sunday and tough enough to get this group to think during the week. We get a day off too, you know. I'm taking the staff out to Brunch. Every time one of the Misfits say, do, or think something stupid, they have to put a dollar in the jar. We call it our Brunch fund. And as far as I can forecast, there's going to be a lot of Sunday meals.

Just like Sunday Brunch, most of the stuff here is overvalued, pre-cooked, and have already been sneezed on  by some snotty 6 year old kid.  But, go ahead:  take a look here and see if any of these days old items are to your liking.  Like most places, our admonishments are the same:  "Take as much as you want, read all that you take".

Saturday, December 11, 2010

A Little Holiday Humor

A full-on acknowledgment to the Green Comic for this one. His act is so erratic as most of the time his stuff is moronic and then, every once in a while, he hits it out of the park. Anyways, it's a pretty good gag:

Three men died on Christmas Eve and were met by Saint Peter at the pearly gates.

'In honor of this holy season' Saint Peter said, 'You must each
possess something that symbolizes Christmas to get into heaven.'

The man from England fumbled through his pockets and pulled out a
lighter. He flicked it on. 'It represents a candle', he said.

'You may pass through the pearly gates' Saint Peter said.

The man from Scotland reached into his pocket and pulled out a set of
keys. He shook them and said, 'They're bells.'

Saint Peter said 'You may pass through the pearly gates'.

The Irishman started searching desperately through his pockets and
finally pulled out a pair of women's panties.

St. Peter looked at the man with a raised eyebrow and asked, 'And just
what do those symbolize?'

The Irishman replied, 'These are Carols.'

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

You' ll Leave Today Feeling Empowered to Succeed!

In order to sharpen my skills, leadership abilities, and over all effectiveness here at FTI, I periodically engage in refresher courses of various subject to increase my worth and value as an Executive Director.  I am currently engaged  in a 2 day seminar entitled, "Racing for Mediocrity: the Quest for Survival in a Cruel World", and  subtitled, "How to Make the Most with the Idiots That Surround You".    

If I do say so myself, I seem to be a leader in the class at this time.  I have repeatedly had the right answers, relayed the most helpful experiences, and throughly impressed the  facilitator of the course.  After yesterday's first session, he pulled me aside to congratulate me and compliment me on how impressed he was with my participation.  We started talking about my actual experience and background.  After explaining my circumstances and describing how the Misfits  think and act, I have been granted a waiver of the enrollment fee and have actually been asked to conduct a seminar on his behalf in the future.   The reason for asking me to do so?  I obviously have greater expertise in this area than the moderator when attempting to  "Making the Most with the Idiots That Surround You. "

Monday, December 6, 2010

You guys sound just like the Mormon Tabernacle Choir

As mentioned last week, I have begun to assemble the FTI Doofus Squad in the hopes of creating some type of choir that could entertain people over the holidays.  Knowing that most groups can sing the simple standard Christmas songs,  I thought it might be a good idea to tackle some of the more complex Christmas hymns as a display of our progress in developing our advanced behavioral programs.    Apparently, that idea was not exactly original as some other competitive group of deep thinkers has beaten us to it and posted their highly impressive results on Youtube. 

It's not easy to perform before a large group in a spontaneous setting.  It's also not easy to  to have memorable results when the majority of your choir's singing ability is equal to that of Peter Boyle's speaking parts in  the Young Frankenstein movie, either.    After listening to our attempts to be like the above featured group, I  realize that perhaps we need to try something less challenging.  We're working on     "Up On the Housetop" currently, but, are having some difficulties with it as well.  The Misfits have mastered the "Ho, Ho, Ho" part.  It's the rest of it that's hard.   

Sunday, December 5, 2010

It's Sunday Brunch

Hey c'mon, it's Sunday and tough enough to get this group to think during the week. We get a day off too, you know. I'm taking the staff out to Brunch. Every time one of the Misfits say, do, or think something stupid, they have to put a dollar in the jar. We call it our Brunch fund. And as far as I can forecast, there's going to be a lot of Sunday meals.

Just like Sunday Brunch, most of the stuff here is overvalued, pre-cooked, and have already been sneezed on  by some snotty 6 year old kid.  But, go ahead:  take a look here and see if any of these days old items are to your liking.  Like most places, our admonishments are the same:  "Take as much as you want, read all that you take".

The weekly struggle begins again tomorrow.  See you then.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

I got your weather for ya right here

Is there any other possible comment for winter conditions than this?

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Hey, that's Odd

Some uncharacteristic events have been affecting us here at FTI. 2 events of noteworthiness include: 
  • the repeated false alarm/failure signal coming from  the FTI wastewater treatment facility.   Normally transformed into our holiday wonderland and short track speed skating course during the wintertime, the wastewater treatment facility has recently been plagued by the damn alarm that keeps intermittently emitting a shrieking sound to signal a failed pump. I trundle  my ass out there, check to make sure that all is OK with the water levels (they're fine), reset the float, and think all is well.  6 hours later it starts all over again.  It really is nothing serious, but I am going to have to do something as the sound is definitely irritating, especially for fans of Gummo the Balloon Boy, as he races for the finish line coming out of the turn over in corner 3. 
  • the breakdown of the 42" FTI plasma TV/entertainment system.  I don't watch a whole lot of TV.  The unit itself is barely 4 years old.  Suddenly last night, Mrs. Kfred attempts to turn the unit on to monitor the questions on Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader?  in hopes that perhaps the Misfits might have met a competitive level for us to be proud about (to this point, they haven't), and the damn TV doesn't work.  Mustering my deep electronic knowledge, I stand in front of the TV and turn the power switch on and off a couple of times.  Nothing.  I then search  the FTI resource library to find every owners manual of anything we have ever bought:  Electric pencil sharpener, 17 year old clock radio, 2 models ago  toaster, current refrigerator, hair curling iron (really, Dear?  The owners manual for a hair curling iron.  What the hell are we keeping this for!?) Finally finding the manual for the TV, I find the troubleshooting index and do everything I am supposed to.  Same result.  My fear is that the repair will be equal to the cost of a new TV.  Of course, the fact that what I paid over $2000 4 years ago can now be had for $699 brings me about the same amount of pain as I experience when I hear the initial practice sessions of the FTI Holiday Choir (we'll be discussing that in an upcoming post as well).     So, a call to the repairman today is in order. 
I will post updates to the results of these and some other troubling aspects as they occur.  I'm sure it's nothing that a few bucks can't fix.  I will be consulting with Dickie the Peap to see if we should repair or just revert to reading books by candlelight ala Abe Lincoln in the 1850's for entertainment.   After all, it's cheaper.