🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩
Hoops at Twain’s House 🏀
Lunch With The Big Bosslady 🥪
Breaking Up Is Efficient 💔
After a long week of work, I traveled north this evening with Boy The Younger for his second hoops game of the season. I missed the first because of an early start time, but this one was a 7 p.m. tilt in Hannibal, the hometown of Mark Twain, an author whose snark I wholeheartedly endorse.
This is the first season in a while I’m not coaching. It was an extremely hard decision, but after the 12 months I just had — from Covid to Longhaul Covid to Host Dad to job angst, a job change and a whole lot more — a prolonged period of less responsibility and more healing is in order.
It’s a bit more relaxing to watch a team of which I’m not in charge. The boys played hard, BTY was his normal pesky defensive self and even scored a bucket on a nice corner jumper. The team won handily 41-28.
Heartwarming Dad Moment Alert: After nailing that jumper, the first thing BTY did was look over to where I was sitting and smile.
In Other Writing …
By John Agliata “Have a seat,” Mr. Polson said. And so she sat. Cheryl’s backside sunk into the chair, and the cushion expelled a humiliating whoosh of stale air. She tugged at her flowered calf-length dress to unpinch it from the too-tight sides of her seat and smoothed it over her thick legs. No chair…Keep reading
I was the “second” this morning, the witness as an employee at my company was terminated. I’m not going to say the challenge of being on the “terminating” end is worse than being the terminated — not even close. It still sucks. The dude was a nice guy. Our team’s standards are rightfully high. We’re building a squad of all-stars. Expectations are very clear and equally reasonable.
My job in that room was to say nothing and to observe, making sure I accurately captured everything that happened. I did that. It went about as well as any situation like that might. And again, it still sucks.
Let’s Learn Something Together 🤔
Breaking up is hard to do. Just ask some of the world’s largest companies. In the past few weeks, mega-conglomerates General Electric, Johnson & Johnson and Toshiba all announced they were splitting up into separate entities. The drive seems to be to lessen the drag the less-profitable parts of these businesses have on the rest.
But don’t think conglomerates are going away. Amazon started out selling books and you now can buy Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches, tires and BDSM gear from them. Alphabet (AKA Google) developed driverless cars and runs that video streaming service your kid is always on. The name of the game is “Efficiency,” and it has some pretty serious consequences for those that fail to keep up.
Though not this bad as this game.
Big Bosslady and I went to a delightful place called Chocolate, Chocolate, Chocolate today. I’m planning a February client event in which we’re going to have a wine and chocolate tasting.
In my fight against Longhaul Covid, I’ve had to totally remake my diet. It’s been a great thing. I feel generally amazing, have lost 30 pounds and don’t really have many cravings for the foods I no longer eat. But stepping inside the store part of a chocolate factory that is actively making chocolate, well, even a guy who knows a return to his old ways will make him feel like blowing his brains out will be a challenge.
BBL and I did our thing, getting some samples to take back to the team to decide on what we’re going to offer in February, and then we went to lunch on The Hill. We enjoyed a great meal and conversation at Zia’s, eating food that I more-or-less am good to hit hard.
Our little Real Estate Team That Could is an interesting place. The Big Bossman is married to the Big Bosslady. One of our best agents is Big Bossman’s older sister. Another agent is cousins with a colleague. A few others are sisters. It makes me wonder if I’m going to find out someone I work with is a long-lost niece or something.
All this familial interplay makes for some interesting dynamics, but somehow it is far-and-away the most well-adjusted, functional team I’ve ever been on.
The ‘What Did You Say?’ of the Day
High Five ✋
Today’s official endorsement goes to the aforementioned Zia’s on The Hill. For the uninitiated, The Hill is an Italian neighborhood in St. Louis and the home of actually authentic Italian food (and childhood home of Yogi Berra). When I left NY for Iowa for college, I was clueless as to the fact that great Italian restaurants and delis don’t exist everywhere in the country. As Wifey Poo and I have gone on our nomadic wanderings thanks to my jobs and some questionable decisions, we’ve managed to find at least a passable Italian place at almost every stop. Having The Hill 45 minutes away is a true gift. Zia’s is one of its treasures.
Today’s Reasons to Keep Living
- Boy The Younger has a season-ending cross country awards picnic tomorrow. Outside. In November. In Missouri. 🥶🥶🥶
- Gotta make my health insurance choices for next year!
- My home office.
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🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Ear Flushing👂Grunge God🎶Tech Guy📺 If you have to have a doctor tell you a body part or yours is small, I suppose one of the least offensive would be the ear canal. That’s what a doctor told me this morning, after I finally broke down and actually went to said doctor’s…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Toys in the Hall🪅Idiot Governors🗳️Flopping FedEx✈️ Last night in my hotel in Springfield, Missourah, I set out a glass of milk and a plate of cookies before going to bed. It’s not that I don’t know how to read a calendar or have any particular belief in a fat man in…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Which One?🗺️Leave Introverts Alone🤫Oxford Commas🤪 I’m on the road for work this week, in Springfield. Ahhh, but Springfield what? There currently are 35 populated places in the United States named Springfield, spread out over 25 states, including five in Wisconsin. In addition, there are 35 Springfield Townships, and Ohio owns 11…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Surrounded 😷Wood Splitter 🌲Morons 🤪 I’ve had COVID. Twice. The first time fucked up my life for a year. I’m still not back to the me I was before it came into my home, and I’m pretty sure that now, nearly two years later, that’s not going to change. The second…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Sunday audible🤒Fantasy Failure 🏈Anal Chess♟️ Sunday was supposed to be a romantic day spent in a canoe with Wifey Poo, the two of us paddling leisurely down the Meramec River. Mother Nature was not in the mood to play wingman and decided to pick the one day in the midst of…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Finish Line Scene 🏃♂️Baseball’s Better ⚾M-I-Z! Z-O-UC-H! 🏈 I have never understood the modern-day purpose of running for the sake of running. Sure, I understand it’s a great form of cardiovascular exercise and it’s a convenient way to get from Point A to Point B, yet the desire to strap on…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Book Guy 📚Queen Stuff 👑Bernard Shaw 📺 I’ve decided I want to own a copy of every Stephen King book ever written. That’s about 75 books at the moment. I have a built-in bookcase in my mancave/home office. I don’t think it would hold all 75 in hardcover, but perhaps it…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Beginnings 📚School Start 🚌Real Baseball ⚾ I was thinking this morning on my drive to work how we rarely know when the significant times in our lives begin. So frequently, the most important things that happen to us start with nothing noteworthy. Of course, there are exceptions, the “love-at-first-sight” moments or…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Fallin’ Thoughts 🤕Shinedown 🎸Sleepy 😴 The brain can be surprisingly efficient when the meatsack it’s attached to is in the middle of falling off a ladder while holding a revved-up chainsaw. This, I learned yesterday morning while attempting to saw a limb off a tree that was getting way too close…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Overview📅Fantasy Football🏈Elite Bonding🤼♂️ Days that start with chainsaws and lighter fluid and end with four hours of really good professional wrestling are bound to be added to the “good” column for review when the scales are weighed at the end of a life. Yesterday was such a day for me. In…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Funeral 😢Glimmers ☁️Meat 🥩 If you’re lucky, you’ve had a second mother. Whether your first mother was or is an amazing person who nurtured you and raised you among calm consistency or if she was lacking in certain maternal fundamentals, having a second mother is a blessing. Today, we were there…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩We’re Dumber 👎OnlyFans Thrives 🍑Shinedown 🎵 Official statistics put the COVID death toll in the United States at 1.04 million, with another 713 deaths yesterday. More than 4,000 people are in the ICU right now suffering from what the former Moron-in-Chief called that one person coming from China and a situation…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Dethroned Queen 👑Gravy Wrestling 🤼♂️Dog Talk 🐕 Don’t fuck with the Bucyrus Bratwurst Festival board. That’s a message Abigail Brocwell is learning the hard way. Brocwell was expected to be inaugurated as the queen of the festival in the northern Ohio town earlier this month, but she was stripped of the…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩3, Unassisted ⚾A Sad Day 📅Tracking Your Vagina 🌸 The last time Boy The Younger was on a baseball field, the “coach” of his team removed him from a game in the middle of an inning because I had privately messaged him to not attempt to steal home with my kid…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Hydrogen Issue 🚀Karting 🏎️Lake Life 😌 I was all excited to watch the launch of the moon-bound Artemis 1 rocket this morning, only to see the clock stopped at T-minus 40 minutes because of a “hydrogen issue.” Don’t know about you, but I’m thinking having an issue with hydrogen is a…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Karen in Control ⌚Karting 🏎️What podcast? 🎧 In the winter of 1993, I went to a comedy club with a friend and, in the spur of the moment, decided to be one of those who came forward to join the fun and be hypnotized. This was decidedly out of character for…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Little League Flap ⚾Grandpa Joe 🤦Psychedelics 🍄 Boys are interesting creatures who aren’t easily understood. One of the many, many weird things boys do is mercilessly make fun of their best friends. My closest friends in middle school and early in high school were affectionately nicknamed Goon, Tree Frog, Butt and…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩 Death Cometh Sooner 💀Twitter Security 🔓Game Over 🌑 Average life expectancy in the United States dropped in 2020 by almost two years in 2020, the biggest decline since World War II. Every state and the District of Columbia saw a drop. Guess it was a little bit more than that…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Worm brain 🧠Chicken Big Mac 🐔Eye Twitch 👁️ Caenorhabditis elegans is probably too elegant of a name for something that is really just a disgusting little worm about a millimeter long and most easily found in rotting fruit. It is more commonly known as a lab roundworm and was the first…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩The Agliata Homeschool Academy 🚌Hypnosis 😳Sunburn 🌞🔥 When you tell people you homeschool your children, you typically receive one of three responses: An enthusiastic: “Oh, that’s so cool!”An I’d-rather-be-dipped-in-acid: “Oh wow! I could never do that!” A you’re-one-of-those-weirdos: “Oh… really… homeschooling, huh?” The percentage for each has changed in the wake…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Indycar 🏎️Best Friends 😎Baseball Irony ⚾ There are certain people who look at car racing as an endless series of left turns. These people are idiots on whom nuance is lost. Boy The Elder and I crossed the border yesterday late-morning to head just past the fine city of East St.…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Swine Inflation 🐖Swamp Thing 🎥Phone Calls 📱 Life was different when I went to college in Iowa after growing up in suburban New York City. This isn’t to suggest I was a city kid. I wasn’t. The city was a place we went to a few times a year, and where…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Triple-Threat 🖥️🖥️🖥️Tasmanian Tiger 🐅Video Work 📹 Humans were not meant to stare at laptop screens. At least, humans of a certain age were not meant to stare at laptop screens. I say this after successfully lobbying for a second monitor at work, which effectively turned my laptop screen into a third…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Look Before Brewing ☕Hoop Construction 🏀Nuclear War ☢️ If you’d like an indication of how much of a Monday yesterday was for me, know that I ended up with an orange in my coffee. Well, to be fair, it wasn’t a full-blown orange. It was something called a Cutie, which is…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩Weird Date 🪦Nature Walk🌳Bulldog Bath 🐶 If you have a date walking around a cemetery, you’re either weird or goth, and neither Wifey Poo nor I were wearing black today, which I guess tells you all you need to know about us. Old cemeteries are something of a fascination for us,…Keep reading
🧩 Today’s Puzzle Pieces 🧩So Long, Kid 👨👦Steak Celebration🥩Chip & Joanna 🪚 Regular readers of my drivel know that I’m kind of an emotional guy, which is like saying that Jack kind of could have fit on the spacious floating door with Rose in Titanic. So it should come as no surprise when I say…Keep reading