March 1, 2008
I met this guy whose mouth was full of gold crowns. We have what, 32 teeth? He must have had 27 of ‘em in gold jackets. His mouth was dazzling and distracting and disconcerting. You couldn’t even focus on what he was saying because you couldn’t take your eyes off his teeth. I was going to ask him if his $30,000 dental work was endodontically necessary or purely cosmetic, but then I didn’t care, and didn’t particularly want to know, so I didn’t ask, he never volunteered, and we both went on chatting like it was totally normal to have a gold mine in your mouth blinding those you’re talking to. Since I wasn’t listening, I found myself thinking, it’s an omen. Gold! Good start to the month.
March 3, 2008
Even in this enlightened day and age, some guys are still confused as to how to get one’s groove on. They are mystified when yes means no, maybe means dream on, and sure, I’ll think about it means don’t hold your breath ‘cause we ain’t ever gonna do that, you pervert. So if I may offer, in the name of public service, some personal instruction on the laaaaadies. This is Business Time by the Flight of the Conchords. Listen. Learn.
P u b l i c S e r v i c e A n n o u n c e m e n t
This public service announcement has been brought to you by the concerned folkery at Keith Ryan Publishing, where we believe that your lovemaking acumen may be as insufficient as those overdraft checks you keep writing, so we have taken it upon ourselves to educate your confused dude within before time runs out, the bank forecloses on your life, and women are no longer an option, if you know what we mean and we think you do.
March 4, 2008
It’s a sad day for Green Bay fans. Brett Favre, the most beloved player in the National Football League, holder of virtually every career passing record since the inception of the game, and an icon in a town that knows a little something about icons, is retiring. First Gretzky, now this. Great, just great.
March 5, 2008
I am switching the DNS servers today, which means this is the last gasp of the old website. Sniff. The new site is mostly built, a spiffier clone of this, and even though there is still a lot of work to do on it – I’m only one man! - I’m completing the domain name transfer regardless. Sniff. Now, it might be a smooth transition and keithryan.com will seamlessly shift from one host to the other, or we might be off the Internet for 2-5 days. What do you have to do? Nothing if we stay online, or come back to visit in 2-5 days if we don’t. In which case, I’ll miss you horribly and think of you often. Here goes...
March 6, 2008
Well, we got booted off the air. It’s Day 1 of the great Domain Name Server switch and I have found it mildly disconcerting to see the website missing in action. However, I have a ton of backend things to do to before its reappearance. So I’m off.
March 7, 2008
Day 2. We’re back! That was fast, eh? Welcome to the brand new copy of the old website! Isn’t this unbelievable! It’s the same! Only different! But I’m not going to sugar coat it, a whole bunch of stuff still doesn’t work, like the e-commerce component, the RSS feed, various links, etc. Hey, tomorrow’s another day, eh? But let’s stay in the present moment if we can. I’m so glad you’re here! Did I say that already?
March 8, 2008
I am going to be trying a few new things. The first one is a simple form where I ask a few questions and you guys tell me what's what. In this inaugral case, it is the debugging of our website favicon .
Wanna help? Oh boy! This way to our spiffy new Feedback Form. Danke.
March 9, 2008
I turn on my computer this morning and the clock in the system tray is 3 hours ahead of the real time. And it was on time when I shut it down the evening before because I remember looking. How can the clock overclock? Maybe if it was one hour ahead I would have figured a glitch in the Daylight Savings Time settings, but 3 hours? Wait a minute, is it Daylight Savings Time already? That’s just weird. Frankly, it was like some alien took my computer to the east coast last night and used it while I was sleeping and then put it back where it was without readjusting the clock settings and hoping I wouldn’t notice. But I did! That possible?
March 10, 2008
Succumbing to self-imposed commercial ideas, I am trying the ubiquitous GoogleAds here and on various pages of the site. As you can see at the bottom of this page, there are now contextual ads. I have no idea if this marketing wrinkle will be a short term experiment, a long lived change, or just a passing fad. In any event, it’s fairly unobtrusive and worth attempting. We’ll see.
March 11, 2008
I was outside in our yard looking up to the top of our property, which borders a one lane dirt road, when I noticed someone up there taking pictures of our place. In the old days, I would have assumed that this person was a tourist shooting the lovely lake views and our vibrant landscape as memories of their Shuswap visit, but in these newly minted (fear mongering) days, I might also assume that it is someone nefarious casing the joint, or perhaps a terrorist up to no good. Now, both thoughts (tourists! terrorists!) are literally different mindsets about the exact same action – an anonymous person taking pictures from far away. Can you see how your thoughts shape your life? One scenario is warm and fuzzy and makes me appreciate where I live that others would want to photograph it for their scrapbook; the other raises suspicions and fear and prompts a reaction on my part (I would go up to the top road and confront them about photographing our place). One is a benign reaction (tourist), one is a stressful reaction (terrorist!), both come from within my own mind. You create your own life, my friends, by the thoughts you have about it. See?
March 12, 2008
IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIThe TUCKER & SOPHIE & MADDIE ChroniclesIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII
March 13, 2008
I am putting together a Best Of KeithSpeak. Maybe it’ll work, maybe it won’t. If it does pan out, I’ll offer it as a download; if it doesn’t, you’ll never hear of this again. Leastways, right now, that’s what I’m thinking. That’s my plan. It’s a good plan, really. Anyway, I’m doing it. So, let’s see. To be continued. Or not.
March 14, 2008
LETTER OF THE MONTH
What is on your Q and A pages? This computer was my ex-girlfriend who we broke up because she spends her time in cafés and won’t get the job. I make her computer pay for rent she never pay. Now she can stay for 3 months, and if she is good, I will let her use MY computer. What is rent like in where you live?
Josef from Prague
Excellent letter, Josef! Rent’s about the same. The Q and As are full of questions and answers, just like these:
Is there such a thing as too much spiritual energy? I get shocked whenever I touch anything around the house! Perhaps I have healing powers?
Feel me, see me, touch me, heal me... Well Tommy, the good news is your spiritual energy is just fine. Your Holiday Camp however, is dry. I suggest you install a dehumidifier and put some moisture back into the air. You can still be a great healer, it's just now you won't hurt those you help.
My husband has grown fat and lazy while I have stayed shapely and get lots of admiring looks from other men. My husband doesn't even notice how others ogle me. But I like it. I want to be desired. Should I leave the bum?
Is there nothing more to your marriage that the leering of strangers can cause you to abandon it?
Tell us a joke.
Integrity in politics.
My 16 year old son is a math dolt. He doesn't get numbers at all. This is both offensive and painful to my wife and myself as we are both Chartered Accountants with our own accounting firm. This boy embarrasses us. We have tried everything from tutors to the Internet. We want him in the family business, but for that he's got to be an accountant. What can we do with him?
Leave him alone. Get a grip. So he not going to live out your dream. If he's not born to be an accountant, he's born to be something else. Let him find out what that is. Right now, all he knows is what he isn't.
Please tell me something you know that I wouldn't know.
The little dogs are the ones to watch out for.
You are far more than you know.
Everything is an illusion.
If diets don't work - and they don't because I have tried every one ever made - then how do you lose weight?
Let me ask you a question first: Why have you been eating so much that you are gaining weight? Figure that out and you will answer your own question.
What do you do when you get a bad book review? I would hate to have people not like me.
A book review is simply someone's personal opinion. It is true and valid feedback from a single individual. If someone doesn't like something I do, and I do like what I have done, then I don't see that as a problem for me.
I'm 6'6" tall and my girlfriend is 4'8". Our friends have taken to calling us Mutt and Jeff because of the size disparity. The thing is, we really do look funny together. It's starting to make me look around at taller women. Is this size thing a good enough reason to break up over?
You are talking about the outer person. Most good relationships are based on the inner person. I suggest you try and separate the two for yourself and take a good look at who she is inside. Is that who you want to be with?
It sounds like you place a good deal of stock in respecting oneself. Why is that so important in the big scheme of things?
If you don't think you have worth, why should others?
That Russell Crowe is a brutish lout. I sure wouldn't give him an Academy Award for his bad behavior.
I may be wrong, but I think they give people Academy Awards for their screen acting.
When you die, do you go to a real Heaven?
You know, I wouldn't focus so much on the locale, as I would the fact that you do go on.
My gross, old, fat, neighbour Wilma is coming on to me. The whole thing disgusts me. I only wish my other neighbour, Sheila was doing it. She's one fine bird. How can I discourage the one and attract the other?
Be up front. Tell Wilma it's never going to happen; tell Sheila it must.
What the bloody hell is going on!
Everything and nothing, all at once, for as long as you breathe.
Have you purposely shunned literary success? It sounds to me, from your website, that you are content to live outside the glare of the publishing industry. Is that fair to say? And why have you done that?
The publishing industry is predicated on marketing and promotion, aka, selling books. I am interested in having a say, doing what I want, and living my nice, quiet life here. They're pretty much mutually exclusive.
But shouldn’t you strive for more?
More than love, home, family, peace, awesome quality of life, ongoing personal development and world class scenery? I dunno, that kind of sounds greedy, eh?
There is this Spanish movie star that makes me melt. I don’t even know his name. I never thought I could go for the Latin type, but this guy is sooooo hot. Of course he probably has a million girls hanging all over him. Do you think someone like that might be interested in a conservative school teacher from the Midwest?
In real life? Probably not. In your head, in your fantasies? Absolutely.
Do you think the world would come to an end if the world ran out of beer?
Nah, but as there'd be nothing to cry into, no one would know how sad it’d really be.
I got caught having sex with our neighbor’s daughter. I’m 52, she is 19. My wife wants a divorce, our daughter, who is the same age as the neighbor girl, is disgusted and is moving in with her boyfriend, and our neighbors have put their house up for sale. Am I having a mid life crisis?
I couldn’t say if it’s the official mid life crisis, but it sure sounds like a crisis in mid life to me.
You are such a Bush hater! I hate you! I wish you would just shut up about our President Bush – he is a great man!
Sez you. As for me, I’ve sez it before and I’ll sez it again: Bush is a moron.
How do I eliminate jealousy over my friend’s good fortune?
You are not your friend. Life is not a competition. You’re in this for yourself. You want to help yourself, do good for yourself? Then create your own good fortune and join your friend in celebration. Your life is up to you. If you envy her good fortune, it sounds like your life is up to her.
I cheated on an exam and got caught. The thing is, I’m not sorry I did it. And I know for sure I would do it again. I’m pretty lazy, and studying isn’t something I like to do. I don’t care about half the crap they teach anyway. How old do you have to be to quit school?
I think when you quit, you quit, no matter how old you are, unless you’re in kindergarten, and then they probably won’t let you quit, so I guess you can’t be 5 years old, if you’re looking for an age limit. Does that help?
I am dating the twins, Rhonda and Rhoda. Am I lucky or what?
There is no such thing as luck, but perhaps dating twins defies this fact?
I eats nuts in bed. They make me feel sexy. I love cracking them with my little teeth. They give me tiger energy too. Grrrr. All the time I’m eating my nuts I’m wearing a thong. My wife says it’s a fetish. What do you think this is?
Too much information.
March 15, 2008
IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIThe TUCKER & SOPHIE & MADDIE ChroniclesIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII
Maddie, this morning.
March 16, 2008
This was so choice. I was looking through archival photos and came across one entitled, Mrs. Belmont’s Farm For Girls. Now the picture was nothing special, B&W, some girls on a farm, but that title... If I had a band, I’d call it Mrs. Belmont’s Farm For Girls. Would that not be the best ever?
March 17, 2008
IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIThe TUCKER & SOPHIE & MADDIE ChroniclesIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII
A pack of malamutes requires parity at all costs. You cannot give food to just one dog, you cannot greet one dog only, and you cannot post Internet photos of two of the three dogs in one month and not the 3rd. Especially if she is the sensitive one. So, in the interest of family harmony, pack dynamics and sibling rivalry, I offer Sophie in the field.
March 18, 2008
I’m sitting in the hot tub yesterday afternoon when a half a dozen bald eagles at heights varying from close up to barely visible, all found a thermal right over where I was sitting. A couple had just taken wing and were slowly circling right overhead as they worked their way up, a few more were gliding great distances back and forth much higher up, and a few were nearly out of sight they were circling so high. I watched all of them for twenty minutes until I got a crink in my neck which is pretty hard to do when you’re relaxing in a hot tub. I took away from this experience an inability to turn my head to the left and an inspiring emotional connection to the natural world around me. Not bad for a mid-day break.
March 19, 2008
We are looking to rebuild our barn. Location wise, we would also like to move it further back than it is, and a bit over too. We’ll want to dismantle the old barn instead of bulldozing it because there’s a lot of good wood and heavy timbers that we don’t want to lose, so that will be a bit of a hazardous chore (you remove the roof first and work your way down to the ground). As well, I don’t want to take it down now because we have lots of nesting birds that use it in the Spring, and this would be problematic for them. But soon, we’re thinking.
March 20, 2008
It’s the first day of Spring and it’s snowing, so I guess I won’t be doing my annual infamous Ode To Nature all nude revue and freeform dance that I’m so loved for each first day of Spring, leastways not this year. Too bad, I had some new moves. Ow!
March 21, 2008
Charlotte made and sold post modern birdhouses on the Internet. When asked which birds would use her unconventional buildings, Charlotte surmised, “Oh, I suppose any avant-garde flocks out there looking for something new and cutting edge, or perhaps individual bohemian birds trying to rebel from the flock mentality.” Asked if these post modern birdhouses were responsible for the demise of her marriage, Charlotte said, “He was a pig. He told me I ought to make ‘em out of wood like a normal birdhouse! The guy was a weight around my neck.” When asked what was next, she replied, “Bird condos – they’re not just for Purple Martins anymore.” All right then, excellent. The end.
March 22, 2008
Ooh, I’ve had this awful song stuck in my head for days. I don’t even want to say the name of it for fear it will become a permanent part of myself and eventually drive me crazy enough to seek out the singer/songwriter and harm him because he ruined my life. How come I can remember this annoying musical drivel yet can’t remember my anniversary? Ooh. which is coming up. That was a good thing to remember! Which I now owe to this pathetic ditty. God. Which is now associated with my anniversary. God.
March 23, 2008
I would like to welcome all the new readers from Tunisia, Germany, China, Poland, Sweden, Japan and Detroit. And say that with the exception of Detroit, I hope we translate well.
March 24, 2008
It’s 3:30 in the morning and I hear voices outside the house. The dogs and I get up to investigate. Sophie, Maddie and I step outside and watch as Tucker goes flying by us, sailing over the fence and crashing off into the bush. More voices:
--What was that?!
--I don’t know but it sounds big!
--I mean NOW!
Twenty seconds later I hear a car start.
Twenty minutes later Tuck returns.
Soon after that, everyone was back asleep.
March 25, 2008
I can’t believe I have so many things on the go. I don’t believe in sin, but multitasking is definitely a sin. My dreamscapes are littered with projects mushrooming out of control. I wake up in a sweat. I’m not a machine!
March 26, 2008
My dearly beloved wife, which makes it sound like she’s dead, but she isn’t, is off on a trip, leaving moi and the hounds to fend for ourselves - with no parental supervision whatsoever! It’s a man dream thing. Stand back! The weekend starts on Wednesday.
March 27, 2008
We were looking for a guy who could drive really fast, and we found Burman.
The funny thing was, years ago we had a similar need, and back then we had hired Burman’s larger brother, the one with the moustache. What a wee small world, eh?
March 28, 2008
A lot has happened this month. I’m not going to brag and puff out my chest very far past where it already is, but I must say that transition wise, things went well. The site is fully functional, there is new content coming, including the Best of KeithSpeak, and other assorted wonders to follow. Now, where was that victory cigar – oh, over by the calendar. Ok then. I just realized this month has a few more days left. But I knew that. Did too.
March 29, 2008
At exactly 8:00 last night, the furnace went out. Hey, I thought Earth Hour was today. Did I miss the memo?
March 30, 2008
So the furnace guy and I used to play ball on the same team together many years ago. I see him every now and then, usually when he comes over to fix my furnace, like now, and he tells me he’s finally going to retire this year. The first thing I thought was who’s going to fix my furnace in the future? Me me me, eh. But to his face I told him how grateful I was for all his years of servicing my appliance needs, and that I was happy for him, which I was, he deserves it, but still I wonder, what about me.
March 31, 2008
A friend who does star charts, did my chart. He called me up. Ooh, it doesn’t look good. Many obstacles before me, lots of problems. He was nice and clear about the issues, and I’m glad he told me. It’s very constructive to know where to focus for my better good. It’s all a part of my personal development, the path to a more fulfilling experience. Here on Earth. Straight from the heavens.
Return to KeithSpeak or go forward to next month
KeithSpeak April 2008