Brett Mason's Brett Bugle

April 2007 Archives

You are in the Brett Bugle archives right now. The HOMEPAGE is much more important.

2007-04-30         category: SOCIAL

~ relax ~This weekend, Valerie and her husband Darren came to town for a swing-dance weekend, and they stayed with me. Valerie does massage for a living, so the first thing we did when she arrived was to look at my relaxation room. Even though I haven't bought an official massage table yet, the unofficial setup I do have (which is a futon draped over an office desk) meets with her approval. To contribute to the room, Valerie provided a disc of her recommended massage music. Thanks, V!

After this weekend, I'm giving a little more thought to pursuing massage therapy as a second career. It pays very well, and I'd fill my human quota for touch regularly, the same way a computer guy can easily fill his human quota for unauthorized AVI and MP3 files.


driving for dummies

Have to write this entry tonight, on the 27th, before I go to sleep, because I do not want to discuss this topic on the 28th.

Next week I will be driving to Florida, and it worries me a little. My car is not in the best shape right now, and I have not worked enough hours this year to be able to afford to fix it up with new tires or whatever. So, even though I'm sure the Camry will make the trip, I can't say I'm not a little concerned.

There's no skipping this trip, though. My niece is graduating from nursing school, and I've been looking forward to this event for as long as she's been in nursing school. I've planned my career choices around it (knowing that if I applied for and landed a corporate gig in 2007, I wouldn't be able to get time off for this). It's a big deal.

Rachel, I'm proud of you, and this is a big deal to me. Congratulations...

2007-04-26         category: MONEY

~ get a job you moocher ~Since I haven't written a "something for nothing" entry in a while, I reckon I'll do it right now.

Two lyrics pages on my website are pulling in a lot of traffic, which is very, very gradually building my Google AdSense account. At this point, I don't have enough for my first Google paycheck (because they only send you a check when your account reaches $100.00), but it seems like maybe I'll get it on my birthday or my fake birthday. Free money, woo-hoo!

I've been watching free French movies on my home computer, courtesy of BitTorrent. The last one I watched was Asterix et Obelix: Mission Cleopatre; it was ridiculous.

Rob persuaded me to get back on the karaoke stage last night; we went to Grapevine, and he was constantly pushing to buy me alcohol (but I refused). After a night of singing, this one girl was begging me to come to her bartending workplace Saturday night and do karaoke for her, and in exchange she'd offer me and my gang free drinks all night. Too bad that today I can't remember where that girl works.

2007-04-23         category: LIFE

~ bring me the peanut butter ~Many years ago, I used to attend a weekly dinner party at the Masterton Mansion, for which all attendees were required to bring an ingredient or side item. We could call, before driving out there, in order to find out what to bring, and the hostess would use her expert knowledge to craft an amazing dinner-party dinner, week after week after week.

Well, now that I've converted my bedroom into a relaxation room (by converting an office desk into a massage table), I am thinking of borrowing the above idea in order to continually improve the room. Here's how it will work. When my neighbor friend wants a massage in that room, she should bring one small item that will make the massage room better. It could be a Detaching the World CD of relaxing music, or it could be some dark fabric to put over the windows, or whatever. Another suggestion: I've noticed some aromatherapy stores selling something called "pillow mist" which would make the pillow a more stress-reducing pillow.

Wonder how soon I can get this party started. Being a computer guy and sitting in front of a computer screen for very many hours per day, I'm a little touch deprived.

2007-04-22         category: MONEY

~ money ~I feel like a chump, now that I've shopped around and learned that all the other insurance agencies would charge me about $200 less for my homeowner's policy than my current insurance agency does.

As Michael Jackson sings in "Man in the Mirror," gonna make a change...



online Braille lessons

There is a serious shortage of Braille transcribers in the country. Should I jump into this small pond and see if I can be a big fish? I've been fascinated by Braille since I was a tiny tot with my eyes all aglow. Surfing around cyberspace, I am now learning that the Braille world is moving away from manual Perkins Brailler (typewriter) machines toward fancy PC-connected embossing printers. It seems to me that a seasoned computer guy with a strong interest in Braille could make quite a difference in that industry. Dunno. We'll see.

2007-04-17         category: WORK

~ cannot identify with that work ethic ~

For two weeks, I haven't been called into work.
Yesterday I worked in Danville KY.
Today I'm working in Owensboro KY.
Sure hope I can stay home the rest of this week and all of next week. (NEET!)


2007-04-16         category: SOCIAL

~ no sympathy for the follicly challenged ~Love hurts, no? As I wander around central Kentucky by myself, I can't stop thinking about the early departure of the only woman who would ever love me unconditionally. She's gone, and no one else can take her place.

If dating is a numbers game — just like vacuum cleaner sales — then I need to book a lot of appointments in order to do a reasonable number of presentations that might lead to a tiny number of sales. But, hey, I'm not booking enough appointments. I am not getting enough variety in my social life, and as a result, I'm only dating two or three new women per year. At this rate, how could I ever expect to achieve my goal of being Regional Manager of the Brett Vacuum Division?

Ummmm, let me stop the analogies. They fail me.

The point is, it will take waayyyy more dates to get past all the incompatibilities and "dealbreakers" that this guy finds himself fighting, if he's ever going to find the 90-percent-unconditional love he needs. What a shame that I'd rather websurf than fight.


you went to the racetrack

Today I visited Keeneland racetrack for my first time this year. I don't usually go during the spring meet or the fall meet when the horses are right there in your face. Normally I only go for simulcast racing, but today I had passes for free admission and a free program, so I went. Wanted to take my two most frequent companions along, but they opted out.

We're having some cold weather in Lexington right now, so the place was not crowded at all. While that's abnormal for a live meet, that's good for me! Parking was not a hassle, and there were no lines for the parimutuel betting windows. I enjoyed watching four of the early races on the card; I walked around and got lots of exercise in the crisp, fresh air. Then I returned home to get warm and to watch last night's SNL.

Perhaps I'll return to Keeneland for "closing day" of the spring meet, when it will probably be warm (and crowded). But then again, no. Too many shows to watch on my PC.

2007-04-14         category: NONE

~ the smile of Danielle ~Went to the mall today because my friend Dawn had a craving for some P F Chang's. Any excuse to visit Fayette Mall is a good excuse, right?

Oh, hey!  Danielle!  There's a store somewhere in the mall that sells a fragrance called Danielle by Danielle Steel. Go smell it and tell me if it's what all Danielles are really supposed to smell like.

2007-04-13         category: FAME

~ sigh at the television ~Just a couple of TV tidbits to report here.

At lunch with Heather recently, I noticed that Dia Davidson, a local celebrity because of her newsanchor status on our NBC affiliate, was sitting in the booth behind Heather. I then proceeded to bore Heather with irrelevant information about my Brett Bugle logfiles and all the visitors I get who were searching for Dia Davidson.

Speaking of logfiles, my web server (DreamHost) is telling me that there's much more activity now in the Bellamy Young area of the Brett Bugle, so I did a little websurfing to find out why. As it turns out, my former classmate has just been cast in an upcoming spinoff show for the monster hit "Grey's Anatomy." Congratulations, Bellamy!!



As suddenly as the Feist visitors left my site, the MC Solaar visitors are now flooding in. This is great! For the first time in Brett Bugle history, my biggest referrer is not or google.comMy biggest referrer is now GOOGLE.FR.

2007-04-10         category: WEBSURF

~ pioneers were not afraid to do weird things ~Let me teach you a quick lesson about Google.

On March 26, I wrote about a lyrics page that I had uploaded when I noticed that no one else on the web had posted the lyrics to "My Moon My Man" before. In that March 26 entry, you'll read how insanely overpopular that one page became, attracting about 98 percent of all the hits on my website.

Last week, however, the flood of traffic instantly stopped when Google moved my search result off the first page of "My Moon My Man lyrics" results. The reason? Many other (more prominent) lyrics sites had copied and pasted my transcribed lyrics into their pages, and Google decided that those sites deserved more attention than I did. But they do not, and here's why.

The Feist page I wrote has an unofficial transcription, which used to include the phrase "skirty swift bean." After listening to the song again, I changed the phrase to "good as we've been." Much better!

Go search right now for my original phrase "skirty swift bean" and see how many times my phrase got replicated across the Interweb. It's amazing to me.

The lesson is this: if you are the first person to upload a big passage of text, be sure to INCLUDE YOUR OWN NAME SOMEWHERE INSIDE THE TEXT so you'll get the teeny bit of credit of you deserve once Google pushes you off their search results.

2007-04-09         category: MONEY

~ leftovers ~The reason I am completely indifferent about going to work is that I live a very simple life, so very little money is required for my process of "earning a living." I already have everything I need, and I have learned how to spend a lot less for the things I want.

For example, today I am not working. I went out to ChickFilA for breakfast because I knew they were having a promotion during Mondays in April which scored me a FREE CHICKEN BISCUIT. Immediately afterwards, I went to the grocery store and stocked up on Easter candy because it's all A BUCK A BAG on the day after Easter. With minimal outlay, I now have enough Almond M&M's, strawberry milkshake Whoppers, and Cadbury Royal Dark Mini-Eggs to last me until my fake birthday.

If I start wanting expensive things, like video iPods or the punishing utility bills that are required to walk around nekkid inside my house in the winter, then maybe I'll bust my butt to get more billable hours. That ain't for me; I have freed myself from the desire for expensive things, and my needs are met.

2007-04-08         category: MONEY

~ what a fool I have been ~For the first time in my life, I am going to have to file an amended tax return (form 1040X). Stupid me; I had run a report in Quicken to tell me what estimated taxes I'd already paid to the IRS, and then I posted the total to my 2006 Federal return. Submitted it electronically / finalized it last week. BUT THEN later I was loading some new transactions into Quicken, and I discovered that I'd made another estimated-tax payment earlier this year which did not register on the report I'd previously run. DANG!

So this will be a learning experience. Builds character, right?

2007-04-07         category: NONE

~ life is filled with joy ~RANDOM UPDATES:
My dizziness is gone; I actually haven't been dizzy for days now.
The cold temperatures in Lexington caused an April snowfall.
Dawn H accompanied me to IHOP and AmStar cinema yesterday.
I want to add "massage table" to my wishlist.
Everyone knows how to download a video from YouTube, but I have just figured out (on my own) how to download an FLV video file from BrightCove, which is much, much trickier.


2007-04-05         category: NONE

~ understand what he is saying ~are these the lyrics

~ Added one more lyrics page to my ever-growing collection. Come and get it, search engines!!
~ Ace Weekly is not having another screening next week, so last night's Grindhouse preview was apparently the end of a trilogy of weekly screenings. Bummer.
~ Temperatures in Lexington have dropped considerably, and we might have record low temperatures this weekend.
~ Gas prices in Lexington have shot up again; now all the stations are at $2.799 per gallon. Bummer.

2007-04-04         category: CITY

~ bring your own massage table ~Last Christmas, my boss gave me some money to use at the Healing Arts Academy for a professional massage because that is one of the requests on my wish list (on my MySpace profile). Well, I had not spent that cash yet this year, but now I definitely will.

A day spa just opened in Beaumont Center called Alure, and they have an ad in the local paper to promote their massage special of $45 for 60 minutes. I booked an appointment for today and will be handing them my Christmas money.

UPDATE: The appointment is complete, and it was a far cry from the H.A.Academy setup. First I was shown the "changing room," where I stored my clothes in a locker and put on a robe and slippers. Then I was escorted to the "quiet room," where I soaked my feet in a bowl of warm water and warm rocks while watching an ocean scene on the television. Then the massage therapist arrived to dry my feet, and we went to another room where I got the 1-hour massage.

A prediction: someday I will raise my standard of living to the point where I'll complain about any appointment — anywhere — that does not begin with my feet soaking in a bowl of rocks.

2007-04-03         category: LIFE

~ very good ~Things are definitely looking up. The dizziness is still with me, but just barely. I learned last year that I can treat this condition quickly by sleeping in the recliner instead of sleeping flat on the bed. Obviously a vertical orientation is required to realign the ear parts and head parts that need fixin'.

In other news, I have another pass for another movie screening! Grindhouse is showing tomorrow night at Regal Cinemas at 7 p.m. For those of us who are keeping score, this is the third Ace Weekly preview in three consecutive weeks. Wow!

Weather's nice; I'm skipping work. Life is sweet, and I am so satisfied with it that I have finally updated my recent photo page.

2007-04-01         category: HEALTH

~ I get dizzy ~Woke up this morning and was crazy dizzy.
Remembered that I've survived this before.
Checked the LexJB archives for more info; I had this same dizziness in early March, 2006. It went away by itself.
This is not an April Fool's entry. I really am going through this again.



Would you like to read my blog entries from March 2007, February 2007, January 2007, or earlier? Sure you would! Feel free! Go read them! Gosh!


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