Friday, September 21, 2012

Why Indianapolis School on Wheels?

I might not have been a fan of it at the time, but being school aged wasn't all bad. My brother and I would get off the bus at the end of the day, grab a snack and watch after school cartoons, and then do homework in our rooms before, and sometimes after dinner with our mom and dad.

Okay, sometimes I'd fake the homework thing, but let's not ruin this image, okay?

The point is, this was a normal thing for us, and we didn't think twice about it. Not once did it go through our child minds that there were kids who didn't have a home to go to, but a shelter. That there were kids who wanted to learn, but had no desk of their own to study at, or pens to write with, or even clean sheets of paper to write on.

Indy School on Wheels thought about that, though. They saw that there were more than 3,000 homeless children in the city of Indianapolis, and in 2001 they started visiting homeless shelters to help these kids with tutoring and support for these kids who might not be seeing that bright of a future in front of them.

I'm a father, and I've been right on the verge of homelessness myself before. I would never want the Geekling to have to grow up thinking that nobody cared enough to even give her basic tools for school so she could better herself. To have to go to class without a backpack, or other supplies. So when my Social Media friends started talking about doing a fundraiser for them, I had to lend a hand.

Thanks to some good friends at the local Half Price Books, I was able to get them some of the books on their Wanted list, namely two sets of Harry Potter Novels. Then, last weekend, after hearing that Target had put their Back to School supplies on deep clearance, I was able to get my folks to hit some of the Targets around Anderson and Muncie, and ended up with a good load of stuff for them from that.

The haul. Hopefully gonna help some folks out.
On top of this, on this coming Monday, we are going to hold "Pie Wars: The Pastry Strikes Back" with all proceeds going to benefit this outstanding group! Pie Wars is going to be a pie competition/opportunity to eat pie and hang out with great people. Being held from 6PM to 9PM at the Indianapolis City Market, this has the makings of a great event, and I know I will be there. For the competition, I'm planning on making a Bavarian Cream Donut Pie, which is what happens with Donut Jokes go too far on The Twitter. For general consumption, since Marion County Health Codes prohibit home made pies, I am planning on seeing what Concannon's in Muncie might have that is very tasty.

Sorry, I'd go for a bakery in Indy, but I only know Marsh. Muncie/Anderson/New Castle is where I grew up.

So anyway, click on the banner above to pre-register for the event through Eventbrite. Hurry, because time is running out! And once you've done that, if you like, please think to check here to see their Wish List of what they need most to help these children.

Help Indy School on Wheels. Children should be free of these kinds of worries.

I'll see you Monday.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Talk Like A Pirate Day

Avast, mateys! This here be the Nineteenth Day of September, which means it's Talk Like A Pirate Day!

Okay, seriously, it is actually International Talk Like a Pirate Day today. So, instead of my planned Workout Wednesday blog post about the Nike + Sportwatch GPS, instead I'm going to show you some pirate pictures.

Yes, pirate pictures. More specifically, of a pirate bathroom.

That's right, a pirate bathroom. This was above the toilet.
We purchased a house back in 2006, and the bathtub in the guest bathroom never worked quite right. Plus, the previous occupant had absconded with the curtain rod for the shower curtain, and we really didn't feel like messing with it. So, what does a pair of creative geeks with no children and a lot of collectibles do?

Yeah, that's right. We went there. And he's RIGHT beside you when you're
going to the bathroom. Staring at you.
Shannon had a pirate costume, and we had some stuff from Pirates of the Caribbean, so this happened. Above the toilet was a pirate-esque sign and a pair of sconces that we found at TJ Maxx that perfectly fit the bathroom. In the bathtub went a cheap skeleton with some parts of Shannon's costume, and a treasure chest made by a good friend of mine, Andy Bowman. We would also swap things around in there from time to time, adding skulls, small props, and coins, although the skeleton always stayed, to remind you that dead men tell no tales Disney lawyers watch everything and take no prisoners.

Some people put lighthouses and fancy soaps. We had a skull and a ship.
Around the sink we had a light up halloween pirate ship, nautical type... things, and a skull with cursed Aztek gold. Later on, we had lights above the mirror put in that matched the theme, along with a towel bar and toilet paper holder that looked closer. 

It was one of those things that, given the time, we probably could have gone all out with, but life took us in a different direction, and the pirate bathroom and our house is just part of our history now.

Yes, that sword was real.
But at least we could say we had a cutlass in our bathroom. That's something, right?

Enjoy your day, have fun, and I'll see you on Friday, ya scurvy dogs!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Holy... Wow, What a Week!

Geez, are you guys still with me? I sure hope so!

Last week was my first week moving from Front Desk/Receptionist to Supervisor at Ye Olde Place of Employment. I was thinking that it wouldn't be too bad. I just wouldn't be able to type up blog posts in the morning at the Front Desk. No biggie, I type them the night before, and schedule them the next morning, right? Well, not exactly.

Sunday night went okay, I put a post up that updated Monday morning. However, no scheduled Tweets went out for it. Eh, no biggie. However, come Monday night, brain was toast. Broken. It was like that the rest of the week, as well. I would get off work, come home, make dinner, then crawl into bed and either read a book, or watch Star Trek: Deep Space Nine on Netflix until I passed out.

No blogging. No Twitter. Nothing.

Then, on top of that, I've been spending my whole shift in the Supervisor office, at my desk, learning paperwork, doing supervisory things, and re-learning the client. With the exception of Monday, I haven't been able to do my walks around the lake, and even though I'm now fitting in pants that haven't fit me in three years (!) I'm feeling myself getting softer around the middle again.

Now, I know this is important. I need to get this stuff down, so the rest of the supervisor team can stop covering for the missing supervisor/trainee supervisor. However, I need to also focus on what's important to ME, and since my family is STILL out of town, that is my blogs, and my exercise.

This weekend, I was going to work on them all again, but I was invited out to my folks place to help with some minor tech troubleshooting, and to try to get some supplies for Indy School on Wheels. So, while I wasn't able to get any walking or writing done, I was able to procure a bunch of supplies for this organization, so I'm marking that down as a win. So, I get home, schedule some tweets for a couple of friends, and then I sit down to write.

As I'm working on this post, I get pulled away for a few hours by the ever-awesome @BgKahuna and @TheJoshMalcak to help with their podcast, @ThePonyHour. (Edited that sentence because I've been informed that Prima Donna Kahuna never gets second billing ) Yeah, I get to play "Cameraman Tony" for them, helping run the recorder and occasionally cracking wise for them. It's a good time, and I love those guys to death, but it really set me back on this. I'm not complaining, though, because hanging around them really energizes me, and it's given me the energy to get this done.

So, this week. I'm back to a blog post every day. Monday, Wednesday, and Friday I'll be posting here, and Tuesday and Thursday I'll be posting on Geeking in Indiana. I'm going to be stepping out of the office for a walk around the lake every day, if for no other reason than keeping my sanity and walking off these french fries I had for dinner.

Wish me luck this week, folks. Writing, exercising, hopefully doing some light cleaning, and re-wiring my "entertainment center" are all on the docket for this week.

Let's see how it goes.

Thanks for sticking with me. I love you all.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Monday Moving Update

Good day, everybody! I hope you all had a wonderful weekend! I know mine was spent writing, and walking, and doing various sundry items before a new exciting work week full of training, new toys, and a metric ton of new responsibilities!

So during the Colts game yesterday, I was reminded and how little time I have left in this apartment, and how much I do NOT want to move into another apartment when this lease is up. I won't go into details, but if you read my stuff on the Book of Face you will have seen a rather blunt/foul mouthed rant from me about my neighbors.

But anyway.

I'm still in a rut on apartment/house hunting. Everyplace is EXPENSIVE. I mean, I got a modest boost in pay when I got the bump up at work, but I don't want to blow it just finding a new place to live!

I guess I am asking a lot though. Looking for a rental house/duplex, not apartment, that is child friendly with an in-unit washer and dryer, in a neighborhood around that area where I don't feel like my car is going to get broken into, or my family will get robbed.

Hey, I've worked in that area, and I've had a store manager robbed, and I've had to deal with countless groups of shoplifters and thugs threatening me as I kicked them out. I am not a fan of that area, especially the farther into the loop you get on Michigan, and that is not where I want to bring my wife and daughter.

I would really like to thank @CS_indy for location's that he's text me over the last few weeks, and I need to head over to check them out.

However, does anyone else have any advice? Perhaps a realtor? Do they help with finding rental properties? I'm sure it's gotta be better than the scam artists on Craigslist.

I'll see you all on Workout Wednesday, and wish me luck this week!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Changes in Life

Because people like pictures!
Good day, everybody! I hope your week went well! I know mine has gone pretty awesome, but unfortunately it’s the type of awesome that I really can’t write about on here, so we’ll just suffice to say that it was a good awesome, and an awesome that is going to require some change of priorities.
First, I’m not going to have as much time to write any more. I’m still going to have spare time at home, at least until the family comes back from California, but my free time at the old workplace is becoming extinct. This does not bother me, however, as I’d rather earn my paycheck than spend time writing for personal projects.
Yeah, I know, I’m a bit weird like that.
In addition, I’m no longer working in the morning, but after a training period, I’ll be working in the evenings. Sadly, this means that my lunch time walks around the lake might be nearing an end. However, it DOES mean that I’ll be able to hit the fitness center with the evening crew after work, so I’ll be active, and hopefully be a bit more social as well.
Plus, this position pays more as well. This means that, on my time off, I might be able to attend things that I have not won tickets for, but I have, in fact, actually PAYED to attend! I’m just not going to be able to hit events on a Friday night, or one weekend a month.
And, as an added bonus, I’m ending up with an iPhone and a company provided laptop. I was SO tempted to go for the Samsung Galaxy S3, but since I have an Android phone, and part of my new position includes familiarity with iOS, then I figured it might be wise to get one.
So in short, it looks like I’ve got a new routine to work out, and I’m going to be relying a lot on scheduling posts.
Bear with me, folks.
Let’s see where this road leads.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Workout Wednesday: Lake Walk and Eating

Good day, everybody! Happy Wednesday that probably feels like a Tuesday, thanks to the Labor Day holiday and the short work week!
You know, unless you work retail, then it feels like some weird day that’s not on the calendar. Yeah, I used to be a register jockey. I know how it is, and I know how you feel.
Today, I’m going to do a bit on my quest for fitness and losing weight. When I say “quest” I guess what I really mean is “This thing I start, and then stop, and then realize I’m a fool for stopping and start again, and then blow out a knee or ankle and stop, and then whine about on social media, and then…” I’ve seriously tried not to do that, and only post when I’ve got something going on.
View of the lake as I make my way down to the path
surrounding it.
Well, over the past few weeks, I’ve learned that there is a path leading around a lake just beside our office. Yes, I understand that I’ve worked here for two years, and while I’ve heard of people taking a walk around the lake, I thought they were taking the roads, or walking in the grass, which was not appealing to me. Yet, when I looked out the window one day, I saw what looked to be a sidewalk, so I went out to explore.
It turns out that there is a concrete path around the lake. If I do one lap around it, and then back to the office, it’s about 1.41 miles. If I do two laps, and then come back to the office, it’s about 2.45 miles. Needless to say, as long as it’s below 85 degrees, and not raining, I’m walking around that lake during my lunch hour, instead of stuffing my face. I’m not really pushing myself on these walks, averaging a 15:30-16 minute mile, because I have to be back in an office for a few hours when I’m done, and I don’t need to be too ripe or sweaty. I like it because it’s nicer than just walking on a treadmill, there is actual scenery to look at, I’m getting a bit of sun on my bald noggin, and it just plain gets me out of the office building for a little bit. The down side is, I’m wearing through pants and underwear a bit faster than usual, along with wearing down the tread on my shoes.
In addition to that, I’ve also been watching my intake. Normally, breakfast is just a protein shake with my morning vitamins. Honestly, this holds me over pretty well through the lunch hour and the rest of the day, so I’m not tempted to hit the vending machines for some treats after the walk. I get home, and I make something decent like meat and veggies, and I don’t make a ton of it. I don’t even make enough for leftovers the next day, as I might then be tempted to go ahead and eat it all that night. Because of this, I have some pretty bare cupboards, I have a craving for salty treats that I just ignore, and I swear I was smelling and craving Long John Silver’s a few nights ago, because I’ve been avoiding deep friend items like the plague.
Because of the past few weeks, I’ve actually dropped from 269.9 to 258.8 lbs. I started keeping track after GenCon weekend, when I chowed down too often on items from The Ram and Scotty’s Brewhouse, and it also includes me cheating and trying the fine treats at Dig IN last weekend. I’m pretty happy with those results. I’m not losing a ton of weight fast, but that’s not the ultimate goal, is it?
View across from the .65 mile mark. I work in the taller building
on the right, the one that looks like a brick attached to a
silver Pringles can.
My ultimate goal isn’t to run marathons, or 5K’s, or anything like that. My ultimate goal is to feel better, and be able to keep up with the Geekling and her endless energy reserves. I want to weigh less than I did in High School, which was 235 lbs. I want to fit into my old pants, which I like, and then have those old pants not fit me anymore.
I’m not the only one in my group of friends that is feeling this way. Over the course of the past year, Shannon has dropped over 130 lbs, and is still fighting to lose a bit more before starting to work out. I think she’s fighting to achieve her dream of being a Roller Derby girl. I know that the Clown Prince of Indy Social Media, @bgkahuna, is also on a weight loss quest, as shown here. Those are the top two I’m thinking of, though I know I have many, MANY friends both on Social Media, work, and real life that are looking to drop a pound or three.
I’ve tweaked what I’ve been using as well, to keep track of my miles, and I’ll let you know about that on Friday. Many of these are social, so if you want to friend me, feel free!
Before I go, I’d like to remind everyone that I’m still updating blogs daily, I’m just updating a different blog on Tuesday and Thursday. If you want to see some of my more Geek-related blog postings, please visit the Geeking In Indiana Blog, and make sure to follow the Indiana Geeking Twitter account for any updates, and Geek ramblings!
I’ll see you all on Friday.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Eight Months, Still No Witty Title

Happy Labor Day, everybody.

Today I'm going to do some musings on this labor. This blog. Yeah, I do this often. Feel free to move on, but I figured that today was a good day, since there is really nobody online anyway, since it's a day off work, and nobody needs to kill time and pretend that they're busy.

I've actually had *INSERT WITTY TITLE HERE* for a little under a year, but I really started using it in January of this year as a little personal challenge. Mainly, to see if I could actually keep going with a blog over the course of 2012. Personally, I don't think I'm doing too bad with this. This will be post 196 on this blog, which is about 160 more than I thought I was going to do.

Now, I apologize, because I know I've repeated myself sometimes. I sometimes joke about it, but I really am broken in the brainpan, and I will forget things. I will forget to wear pants, I will forget birthdays, and I will forget whether or not I've written on a topic. Sometimes, I will remember to go through my post list to see if it's something that I might have written on, but since I'm so vague on a lot of things, I can't always tell. Someday, I will figure out how to get all that documented so I can check it easier. Perhaps making better use of labels? I dunno, anyway.

One thing that DOES blow my mind is that people read this. Yeah, I know everybody says that, but seriously! This is what I like to call my "Vanity Blog." It's where I post things I do, things I like, and just random mental musings that, for some reason, I think people would want to read. I wasn't expecting anyone to read it. Hell, my PARENTS didn't even get the blog address until late last week.

And yet.

Last month, the month of August, I got 908 views on my website. Nine. Hundred. And. Eight. Yeah, that's only about 29-30 views a day, but I'm a blog about NOTHING. I'm not a daddy blog, I'm not a tech blog, I'm not a movie blog, I'm not a geek blog. I'm a Tony blog. I write about Tony things.

And about 30 people a day seem to want to read about Tony things.

I think that is equal parts awesome and intimidating. It makes me want to make the Tony things a bit more exciting than sitting here and reading books about Cast Member experiences at Walt Disney World. It makes me want to do more stuff like Dig IN, GenCon, and Fringe. No, it's NOT enough to make me want to do things like RibFest, or any of the races that this city is known for, but it DOES make me want to get out and do more. It makes me occasionally embarrassed about my wandering style, my occasional inability to make a point, or get to a point, or make any sense, or bacon pants.

Don't get me wrong, I don't do this blog for views, and trust me, you aren't making SQUAT financially with a blog like this, so it's obviously not about that. I just do this for fun, and sometimes it's fun to look at the number of people hitting your page, or the top search items that bring people here.

For the record? It's folks searching for "Indianapolis Comic Con." Seriously, Con organizers, get on this.

Anyway, I guess what I'm trying to say is Thank You.

Yes, you. I'm serious.

Thank you for visiting this blog, reading my disjointed ramblings, and sticking with this.

Thank you to my social media friends who click on the links that I post up, and sometimes comment, either on here or on the social media sites about what I write. You guys are awesome.

Thank you to my real life friends that sometimes stumble across this as well, be it on Google Plus or Facebook. Yeah, not many of my real life friends use Twitter.

Just... thanks to everybody.

You are all #awesome.