Thursday, October 31, 2013

Office trick-or-treaters

I know in this day of overblown public fears about going out after dark and leaving your house without an armed escort, it's become very popular to do trick-or-treating at workplaces.  Mine is no different.

We had the what is becoming traditional office trick-or-treat today at the TV station.

I have an office in a location at our building that is away a bit from where I thought my fellow employees would take their kids.  I bought a bag of candy anyway (since when has candy gotten so stupidly expensive? A one pound assorted bag of Smarties, Nerds, Double Bubble, Swedish Fish, etc. was $8.98 at Walmart Neighborhood Market.  Pretty soon I won't be able to afford it without a need to finance it with payments).

I took pictures of the handful of kids that did migrate to my office.  I told them to take a fistful of candy but they barely made in a dent in the bowl.  Lucky for my co-workers in the coming days, they'll get free candy until the bowl you see below is empty.  I won't be eating much of it.  The only kind of candy I like from it is the Smarties.  I need all the intelligence boosting help I can get.

Candy for the office trick-or-treaters

My co-worker Amanda and one of the trick-or-treaters

Spiderman is shorter than he looks in the movies

This bug was lucky I didn't have any insecticide.
She survived a visit to my office.

This young man wasn't happy to get his picture taken by the Kenparazzi.
I don't understand why he was upset, I bribed him with candy.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Anthony breaks an unwritten law

Anthony and I had our usual Sunday night outing tonight.

First, we went to Taco Bell.  I wasn't very hungry and could order a couple of tacos and be happy.  After that, we drove a few blocks to Dairy Queen / DQ and had ice cream.  Walmart Neighborhood Market was next on the agenda at 22nd and Craycroft.

We were quite the pair today... I feel like crap from drinking a few beers at the Halloween party we went to, and Anthony has somehow aggravated a shoulder injury he got a handful of years ago.  We were good company for each other until we got to the checkout lane at the store, and then the boredom of shopping set in and we turned into two crabby bitches.  The woman in front of us at the store must have thought we were nuts (and she probably wasn't wrong).

It takes a village (of at least four people) to make
my hot fudge sundae at DQ on Tanque Verde.

Anthony broke an unwritten law:
He brought his Taco Bell soda to DQ and drank it while eating
his Peanut Butter Bash.
The unwritten police consider him an unwritten fugitive.

If you're a Taylor Swift fan, here's something you have to get:
Taylor Swift collector's edition Diet Coke.
I wonder if it tastes like her.

This may be one of the least nutritious things I've seen in a while:
The Hormel MVP Peanut Butter and Jelly Roll-Up Kit
It's peanut butter and jelly that you roll up in a tortilla, and then
have Laffy Taffy candy with it for dessert.
Go ahead fat kids, rejoice.

I found this weird:
Air Wick National Park Limited Edition scented sprays
American Samoa, Virgin Islands, and Hawaii
All three of these places are warm, humid and next to the water.
They should smell like fish and sweaty residents.

The Coca-Cola reps got creative at Walmart Neighborhood Market.
They used 12 packs to make a pumpkin.

An abandoned half gallon of milk in the ice cream section of Walmart Neighborhood Market.

Across the parking lot from Walmart Neighborhood Market at 22nd and Craycroft
is Fast Med Urgent Care.  For the second Sunday in a row, the same guy was sitting
in the same place in front of the clinic at about the same time of night.
You can see his feet next to the large column with the brick at the bottom.
This is one way to make sure you're first in line when they open.

On my way home from the store,
I spotted Tucson Police busting a driver at Speedway and Craycroft.
I hummed "Bad Boys" from the Cops TV show when I drove by.

Halloween House Party

Anthony and I went to a really fun Halloween house party last night.

I brought my camera along to capture the amazing job that was done on decorating the house and the creativity that went into the costumes everyone wore.

We went as two crew members from the Nostromos, a space ship from the original 1979 "Alien" movie.  I was Captain Dallas, the commander of the ship (who gets eaten by an alien about halfway through the movie.... I'm delicious even in make-believe).  I'm not much of a science fiction fan, so the costumes were Anthony's idea... and to his credit, they worked out great.

Here are a few photo highlights:

Anthony dressed as Executive Officer Kane from the Nostromo
under attack by a face hugger

I've never been able to fight off plush toys when they attack my face

The decorations in this house were spectacular.
Anthony looks like he's going to kill me.

Anthony plays bartender for a minute on the ice luge

Leslie showed up as "Sharknado"

The other side of Sharknado

In one of those "it's a small world" moments, Anthony ran into
a woman he used to work with at his last job.
One of them is a saint, I'll let you speculate which one.

Sperm on the ceiling

I'm what you call "a bad actor"

Me and the Anth doing a "selfie"
I'm sure they did those back in 1979 in the original Alien movie, too.

You can check out all of the photos I shot (about 100 of them) in two minutes with this Kenparazzi video slide show.  (Direct link to the YouTube video is available by clicking here).

Friday, October 25, 2013

A man with a pillow in the lobby

I work in a building with two TV stations and four radio stations.  Due to the size of staff that is required to run a joint like that, there is always some unusual crisis or situation going on.  Most days I consider it part of the course of how business is done, but once in a while unusual is more unusual than our usual unusual and I thought I'd share today's unusual story.

I make numerous trips up to the front lobby each morning from about 9:45 to 11 a.m. to escort guests of the TV show back to the green room or TV studio.  I spotted a guy in the lobby who was taking up two chairs, one that included himself and the other with a pillow and blanket.  I didn't recognize him as a show guest so I didn't pay much attention to him.

One of the ladies that handles affairs at the front desk came farther back into the building shortly after I spotted the guy and announced that he was there to apply for a job, had not gotten a response from numerous phone calls he had made, and decided to plant himself in the lobby until he could talk to anyone who was in charge of hiring.

Someone did eventually go out and talk to the guy and had him fill out an employment application, then he left after that.  I saw him walk out the front door with his pillow and blanket.  I did find out the guy's name is Jim but nothing else about him.

I thought about him several times today.  And, I decided that I like him even though I never talked to him.

I like him because he is trying.  He probably won't get a job with my company because it's likely he doesn't have the qualifications.  But, it doesn't matter in my opinion.  He's trying.  That's huge.

I have a real issue with doing nothing.  Maybe it's because I've never had that luxury.  I've had to fight for what little I have my entire life.  I try to learn something new every day at my job and try to teach myself new things outside of my job.  It bothers me when others that are very capable complain that life is unfair to them.  I don't have much education or am not brilliant.  But, I do try even if I fail at things quite often.  I believe the reason that I've had any level of success in my job or life is because I grind through the difficult stretches.  Mostly because I have to, and don't have a plan 'b'.

I'm cheering Jim on.  It takes a pair to show up in the lobby of a business and do what he did.  He didn't sit at home feeling sorry for himself.  He went out and tried.  Most people would not do that.  I hope someone who is hiring sees his tenacity and gives him a chance.

Go Jim go.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Meeting Paul Rodriguez

I met comedian / actor Paul Rodriguez today.  He was a guest on the TV show.

He's in town to do a benefit comedy show for the Hearth Foundation at the Fox Theatre.  He is a super nice guy.  I tried to be funny in front of him, he wasn't amused.

I guess I'm still just a comedian in my own mind.

Comedian / actor Paul Rodriguez
One of us is funny, the other has fabulous hair.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Charley's at Park Place

I went to Park Place Mall tonight in Tucson to buy a mirror ball for the TV show.  (We're doing a take on a Dancing With The Stars segment for a show this week).  While I was there, I ate dinner at Charley's Grilled Subs in the food court.

Charley's specialty is grilled subs.  They're a franchise or chain (maybe both?).  I have eaten there before and it's usually my favorite choice if I eat at that mall's food court.  (One thing I noticed today, they are right next to the Subway location at the food court... what idiot put those two next to each other?)

Tonight I got a California chicken sub and made it into a combo.  The sandwiches there are delicious and I've been happy with every one that I've ever tried (they make a good chicken Philly sandwich, too).  But, I am always sad about their French fries.  I watched one of the employees scoop the uncooked ones out of a grey plastic tub and put them into the fryer.  I'm pretty sure they're unthawed then cooked.  They don't seem to be the type of fries that are cut from potatoes on-site so it's likely they were frozen at some point.  They serve them in a cup standing up.  And, I'll be honest, they blow.  Skip that part if you eat there.

They also serve Pepsi products, which means I ordered a Diet Pepsi, which means I had to endure that awful medicine-like taste that comes with Diet Pepsi.  (Diet Coke fan here).  But, like I said, the sandwich was good.

There's my review... for what it's worth.

Charley's Grilled Subs as seen from the other side of a partition in the food court at Park Place

California Chicken sandwich from Charley's, those awful French fries,
and a Diet Pepsi.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

A 12 incher, hot fudge, and pampered pumpkins

It's Sunday, the day of the weekly dinner and grocery shopping outing for Anthony and I.

Today we had dinner at eegee's, a local restaurant chain that specializes in frozen fruit drinks and sub and grinder sandwiches.  We ate at the location on Tanque Verde Road because it was next door to DQ and Anthony wanted dessert there.

After sandwiches and sundaes, it was off to Walmart Neighborhood Market at 22nd and Craycroft for our usual grocery shopping trip.

A tray full of sandwiches and French fries at eegee's
Anthony didn't want his picture taken today, so the closest thing
I was able to get was his hand picking up fries.

Anthony got a 12 inch sub sandwich and a pink lemonade eegee drink.
His eyes were bigger than his stomach, he only put six inches of it in his mouth
and took the rest of it home.

My five inch roast beef sub sandwich.
There was roast beef somewhere below all of that lettuce.

The hot fudge sundae I ordered at Dairy Queen.
I don't like nuts, but happily take whipped cream and a cherry on it.

Anthony got a Peanut Butter Bash at DQ

A fall baking display at Walmart Neighborhood Market.
Pumpkin seems to be the thing this year.

I purchased a box of honey buns.
I'm still not sure what makes them patriotic.
Maybe they stand up and salute when they're eaten.

Here's a display of "Attitude Sunglasses" for $5 each.
Nothing says attitude like cheap ugly sunglasses.

I spotted this display of pumpkins at Walmart Neighborhood Market.
The word "pamper'd" stuck out, then I noticed that they are
from a farm in Manteca, California.
I drove through Manteca twice a day for many years when
I lived in Cali before moving to Tucson.
I never met Van Gronigen and Sons when I was there, though.

Arizona vs Utah football game

I went to the University of Arizona football game versus Utah last night.

I sat in one of the luxury skybox suites.  It's not only offers a spectacular view of the entire field, but there is a food buffet and the owners of the box had beer, wine and two TV's to watch the game besides what I could see live outside of the window.

I brought Anthony with me.  It was his first time going to a sporting event.  He's not a fan of crowds.  Considering that, the fact that he went was pretty remarkable.  I think he didn't love the experience but it was fun bringing him.  His lack of enjoyment could be partially blamed on the fact that he is not a sports fan.

I brought my Canon SX50 superzoom bridge camera.  It has the most ridiculous zoom lens you could imagine, with a 1200mm focal length, 50 times optical zoom, and 200 times digital zoom.  The photos with this post will give you an idea of what kind of zoom it has.  You'll see wide shots of the entire stadium, as well as close up shots of people across the stadium.  It is not an interchangeable lens camera, all these shots were done with one lens.  I think it is an impressive camera.  Unfortunately, there is minor distortion with the shots from the skybox because the photos were shot through the window glass but they still came out pretty good.  (Click on any photo to see them enlarged, they are better that way).

The best news of the day:  Arizona won the game, 35-24.

Anthony's first football game ever.
We parked across from Arizona Stadium.
I bought him the shirt so he'd look the part of a football fan.

Skybox Entrance... yes please.

Waiting for the gates to open.

Sunset over the mountains looking over the north end of Arizona Stadium

Another photo of the north end of the stadium.
A construction project was completed just before this year's football season
to build those stands, new concessions, and sports training facilities underneath.

Wide shot of Arizona Stadium at sunset, about 90 minutes before kickoff.
Zoom shots below will give you an idea of the
camera's abilities.

South end of Arizona Stadium and the Catvision video board.

Arizona players warming up for the game on the field

Arizona marching band on the field for the national anthem

Lined up for the Arizona players to come out of the tunnel and onto the field

View looking down directly below the skybox

Football game underway

Arizona quarterback BJ Denker running with the football

Anthony and I in the skybox

These guys in the Zona Zoo student section are #borntobewild!

A glass of wine helped to ease Anthony's nerves

See the moon beyond that stadium lighting tree?

Here's what the moon looked like at 100 times zoom.
You can even see the craters along the top.

They put the Utah / visiting marching band at the very top of the stadium

Here's the Arizona marching band in the stands

Food buffet that included Mexican food and bacon wrapped hot dogs

Anthony and Anthony watching the game in the skybox

Four guys with green hair in the Zona Zoo student section

These guys found out what happens when you make love to a Smurf

Arizona cheerleaders stopped by the skybox

Former University of Arizona and New England Patriots linebacker Tedy Bruschi
was honored during the game.
That's Athletic Director Greg Byrne on the right wearing red shoes.

Arizona marching band at halftime

Mariachis and dancers joined the halftime show at Arizona Stadium

They had cookies at halftime!

A colorful group in the Zona Zoo

Here's Arizona football player Jared Tevis, who was a guest on my TV show a couple
of weeks ago, sidelined with an injury

This UA Police officer keeps people in line with his finger

The A in the middle of the field at Arizona Stadium needs to be vacuumed.

Here's what happens when a Smurf goes wild.

Wilma and Wilbur Wildcat

I'm not the only person taking pictures at the game

The last points Utah scored was this field goal

We left with 1:45 remaining in the game.
The final score turned out to be 35-24 when Arizona scored
one additional touchdown to seal the win.