NOTE: If you are easily offended by offensive things then please go somewhere else. I suggest or, you wuss!


Monday, April 30, 2007

Mr. Steve's Accidental Vacation ...

... apparently since I've been with the Barnes and Noble company for so long I get three weeks of vacation time. And apparently I went into the managers office and scheduled out all my vacation time like two or three months ago. And apparently I gave myself the week after inventory off, save the tuesday so that I could still do storytime. And apparently I plum forgot that I had given myself the whole week after inventory off, except for tuesday.

So here I am, Steve Galindo, on an accidental vacation.

It feels strange, like I'm playing hookey or I'm in trouble or something. I wish I would have remembered I was going on vacation. Maybe I could have planned something. But as it stands all I have to do is drink, take care of the kids, eat, annoy my wife and have numerous sexy kitchen dance parties. We have a lot of kitchen dance parties, me and my wife and the kids dancing in the kitchen to whatever cd I've burned or whatever my iPod's churning out. Oh, and I'm also going to get a subscription to City of Heroes and go see a movie (the last film I saw in theaters was freakin' BORAT) and try to do my wife in the shower. That's a tough one what with the kids.

I am in on tuesday, though. I have to train Tiffany, do a big Spider-Man storytime, shelve, set up storytime on saturday, and redo all 13 of my section's endcaps. It will be hell. But then after that I don't have to go back to work until next tuesday. That's a crazy amount of time for me to do nothing. I wish I had my computer back. Hopefully I'll have it soon.

Here's some awesome mashups for your OWN sexy kitchen dance parties. You're welcome ...

Party Ben: (Triple) Freak Me Out

DJ BC: 5 o'clock People For Prez

Party Ben: Galvanize the Empire

DJ Max Entropy: Don't Phunk With My Fortunate Son

Synchronize: Sweet Times Of Mine

DJ BC: Listen Twice

DJ Max Entropy: Short Skirt, London Bridge

Captain Book VS Ms. Know-It-All went amazingly well and Megan was a great trooper and an awesome bad girl and the kids really dug it. It went ten times better than I had planned it. I'm so happy with it I'm not even mad that Megan LITERALLY threw me off the stage, knocking the wind out of me like mad.

My wife couldn't make it to the storytime, so there's no video. Again. But there should be pictures up here sometime midweek. So stay tuned.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Pirates, Mr. Know-It-All, Hyper-Chondriac And The Wife ...

... here are some pictures from last weekend's highly successful pirate storytime and treasure hunt. We had 36 kids and just as many adults shoving into kids to see what all the fun was about. I even convinced a few kids that Mr. Steve and Pirate Steve are two separate people. And that's awesome.

The district manager spent the day at our store a few days ago and in between telling me how to face out a book and telling me which entire sections to move around, he seemed to really dig the cool pictures of Pirate Steve and all the pictures of Captain Book and the concept of the evil Dr. Borderz with a Z and he promised to get them published in the interstore newsletter magazine thingy. Hopefully he takes that hill and doesn't crap out on me. That'd be cool.

Here's the pics ...

I told the kids that yes my hook was fake but it was a training hook for when I finally lose my hand. One of my regulars was so excited about storytime that she dressed like a pirate too and when I called her Maya she got angry and said its PIRATE Maya. I also liked my pirate "sword" ...

On our treasure hunt we pretended the kids section was a massive island that we had to navigate. The front entrance to my department was the mountain top and I had the kids yell hello to the people on the bottom of the mountain. I said "Look at all the people down there. They look like ants. VERY UNDERSTANDING ants. Very understanding and not at all angry customer ants." The customers we disturbed with our crazy loud pirate silliness got a kick out of that.

This was probably the 10th pirate treasure hunt I've done in the store in the three+ years I've been doing storytimes there. I've pretty much perfected it so that the kids get to run around the store but not too much and the customers get bothered but in a cute way and not an annoying way. Every time I do it I add something to it and do it slightly differently and try to make it better and different. I've become a master at making a white piece of paper look like a dirty old treasure map. I'm great at getting the kids to play along with my silly mind. And I'm good at getting the kids all fired up, too.

This time, though, I adlibbed something new off the top of my head. We found the treasure box and I told the kids to sit back down by the stage. They sat back down and I made a run for it. WITH the treasure box. Very pirate-like. I was planning on trying to steal it and have the kids laugh and eventually I'd come back.

I wasn't expecting the kids to chase me down and try to wrestle the treasure box away from me ...

Posting these pictures reminds me why I'm still working with Barnes and Noble after almost seven long years. I feel like I'm being overworked, underutilized, I bring in a ton of people for my storytimes and clubs and events and hardly anybody cares, I bust my ass trying to get things done, I bust my balls and get very little in return. I'm getting $11.25 an hour which isn't bad but isn't enough for a family of four to live on. For all intensive purposes I should quit and find a job that will respect me more and pay me what I deserve.

But seeing the look on these kids faces, I can tell I'm making a difference. Sitting there and reading to the kids and being loud to the kids and being a major part in these children's lives, this is what I want to do. I'd rather get little pay and do what I want to do then get bank and do shit. I want to be here for the kids. That's why I stay.

Emerald asked me if Pirate Steve could come and play with her today after school. I said I couldn't get him to come today but I could have him come home with me tomorrow. Emerald is really excited to play with Pirate Steve, although she has said "Daddy, I'm pretty sure its you."

This saturday is the next installment of my epic, year-long Captain Book saga. It should be awesome as hell and I can't wait. Last month's story had Dr. Borderz discover Captain Book's secret weakness (poetry) and way a smaller croud but a much bigger laugh. This month Dr. Borderz will be sitting it out as Mr. Steve's storytime gets hijacked by a brand new FEMALE villain, the evil Ms. Know-It-All!

Marisa was supposed to be this month's villain but she got hit by a car and now has a pimp ass gangsta limp. So I switched Marisa with Megan who was originally slated to be the evil Miss Lulu in the summertime. So now Marisa will be Lulu when her knee gets better and Megan is excited (and slightly nervous) to be Ms. Know-It-All.

I will be playing myself, my greatest role. I have the bulk of the dialogue, me and Megan. She seemed a bit nervous by as she put it "all the talking" so I cut down a bit of her wordy dialogue and added some more awesome stuff for me and Captain Book to say. This is a relatively Book-free storytime as our hero only comes in at the end to talk to the kids and defeat the bad girl and save the day. It's mainly Megan thinking I'm too loud and crazy and taking over storytime BY FORCE so that she can turn it into a quiet and boring learning experience. I'm excited. There's a lot of new levels to the script and of course you can never script what the kids are going to do. How exciting, eh? This is going to be good.

I'm reading a really good book, too. It's an advanced reading copy of Hyper-Chondriac by Brian Frazer. It's damn good and funny as hell and helping me get through some of the jittery, work too hard, stressed out anger issues I'm dealing with. It's all about a hyper guy and his quest to calm the hell down. It's really good and fast-paced and it's easy to just rip right through. It's also the first uncorrected proof I've ever read where the mistakes and all over the damn place. It's neat. I never notice any mistakes when I read an advanced reading copy so all the blatant errors in this make me feel smart and attentive, which I'm not. I don't think the book schould be placed in humor, though. That's a category decision made by someone who'se never rea the book. It's better placed in biography or essays or even in cultural studies. But it's a great read and everybody whose ever gotten angry should read it. It's not a self-help book, though. It's one man's battle with his own mind and it's damn funny.

Also, things with my wife are fine. My wife and I are doing good. Yes, we've been fighting and yes there was some tension between us but what do you expect from a copuple that's been together for almost four years and has been married for almost two? All couples fight and yes I don't get angry a lot but eventually even I have to get angry about shit. We fought and argued and we even didn't speak to each other for a while there but that's all past now.

We're great, my wife and I, and we are very much in love and I really couldn't ask for a nicer and cooler and sexier wife.

So up yours, Hitler!

Oh, and remember to watch out for malaria!

That's it for me. See you later. Wind clan out.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Various Galindo Family Pictures ...

... so here's the short and skinny of it:

-the wedding was pretty but a bit boring

-Tahoe is wierd

-inventory was hell but fun hell with Megan by my side

-I have no friends and I'm feeling really depressed and lonely

-my wife and I have been arguing a lot lately but we're working on making things better

-I had a big pirate storytime with 36 kids and 36 adults last saturday

-I miss the show "Cheap Seats" ...

That's about it. I'm going to go home now, drink Tecate and watch Heroes.

Take it easy. Death to shooshers.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Seperately, I Hate These Things ...

-4:20 (snicker snicker cough)

Separately, I hate these things.

Weddings, I don't particularly like. They're pappy romantic crap and they usually bore me. I don't even like it when the wedding is of someone I know. The only good thing about weddings is a free bar.

Secondly, in case you didn't know, I am a mexican from Phoenix, Arizona. I don't do snow. I get cold in 72 degree weather and cannot comprehend show. It's too cold and I don't mentally and emotionally act well around it.

Finally, I hate 4:20, the pothead's holiday. I find pot to be a "high school" drug. I'm not against it. I just outgrew it. I find it to be pathetic and sad. This belief of mine was probably bown from the years I spent living with a woman who smoked pot more than she drank water. It's constant presence in my life became an annoyance. I don't do pot. I think it's sad.

Okay, so I don't like weddings, snow, or 4:20.

So how do you think I feel about waking up at 5am tomorrow to drive up to a snowy Lake Tahoe to go to a wedding of some relative of Natasha's whom I've never met who thinks it's cool (snicker snicker) to have her wedding on 4/20? How do you think I feel?

Gawd I'm so depressed.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Super Baby Freak Out ...

-Isabela is quiet an cute and talkative and an all around sweet natured little cutie pie ...

around people!

But you get her all alone and she has what Natasha and I like to call "Super Baby Freak Outs." She yells and screams and kicks and loses it hardcore. Her face gets red, she'll yell at the absolute top of her lungs, she squirms, she kicks and scratches, tears start to build, and she seriously screams like we're torturing her. Just picture a baby at its worst and then multiply it by ten and that's an Isabela Galindo patented Super Baby Freak Out.

Usually she has Super Baby Freak Outs when she's tired or when she's not getting Natasha's boobies or when we have to leave and she doesn't want to leave. She also likes having Super Baby Freak Outs at parking lots of major stores. It's like I'll try to buckle her into her car seat and then she'll kick me and scratch me and LITERALLY try to jump out of my arms and she'll basically act like I'm fucking molesting her. And, man, I get these absolutely HORRIBLE death looks from passing white people. It's horrible. It's frustrating and painful and heartbreaking and the absolute worst and its all mixed together with the feeling that you're the worst parent in the world for not stopping this.

Here's the only other picture in existence of one of Bela's Super Baby Freak Outs ...

I was lonely last night. I haven't been spending a lot of time with my wife lately. She's been stressed out and so she's been escaping any chance she gets, leaving me to take care of the kids all alone. Last night she came back from a women's meeting to spend time with me but fell asleep at around 9:30, so I stayed up drinking until sometime around 2am.

But, wow, for the first time in like forever I slept in. Yeah, shocking I know. And when my wife woke me up we made nasty monkey love. Afterwards she told me that both the girls were at church with her mom so we could spend the whole morning all alone.

This is the first time in a very very very very very long time that its just been me and my wife. That's what happens when you get married and have kids. It's so easy to drift apart. My wife has been spending a lot of time away from me. She goes to this party or she goes out with a friend or she goes next door for forever. I know she gets stressed out having to take care of the kids and its a break from the children she's looking for but it's really difficult for me not to take it personally and think that she's really trying to get away from me.

But we had sex, went mad at Hometown Buffet, went to target and bought shit, went a few other places, and when we got back home we got the girls and drove to a park and flew kites. It's been pretty awesome.

I was worried I'd lose my wife but today was exactly what I needed. I might be going through painfully hideous coffee withdrawls but things seem to be getting better for me all the time.


Thursday, April 12, 2007

The High Cost Of Workplace Happiness ...

... so as any regular reader of this blog will know, I've been having problems at work.

I've been stressed out, exhausted, angry and eternally upset. I've been feeling overworked and underappreciated and pretty much used. I've been stressed to the max and it's been spilling out into my personal life, making me blindly angry about everything in the world as a result. The black knuckles on my right hand are a prime example and so is the stomach disease that I know have to wrestle with daily

So yes, a massive amount of my problems can be traced to my work overworking me. And yes, a huge amount of my physical and mental problems of late can all be traced to my job forcing me to do the work of three or four other employees and cashiering and covering breaks and all that. Yes, my work is mainly responsible.

But I think I've found another reason ...

THIS is my coffee mug.

I call it The Kong.

For the last year or so, on any given workday I would on average drink one and a half of these during an eight hour shift. I would drink half, fill it up with warm coffee, and drink the rest. Sometimes I drank less and sometimes I drank close to two.

Two Kongs. Two whole fucking Kongs. In just eight hours. Can you believe that? And that's not including whatever coffee I'd drink before I went to work and whatever I'd drink when I got home. That's an almighty whopping shitload of coffee.

That's a lot.

That is a seriously dangerous amount of coffee for one person to drink. I know that. But that's what I felt I needed to get the amount of work done that my job was and still is giving me.

But for no real reason this past monday I just up and decided with no real forethought to just drink ONE CUP OF COFFEE in the morning and then NOT DRINK ANY MORE COFFEE ALL DAY.

My eight hour workday became what seemed to be a 72 hour workday but other than that the day was great. I was relaxed, less stressed, hardly angry, and I didn't burn out and lose it like I usually do. on tuesday I had storytime and on wednesday I had the Harry Potter club so I only drank a half a Kong, but I still has a somewhat okay day with minimal freakouts.

I think I can do this. I think I'm cutting down on the coffee. ME?!?!?!?! Can you believe that?

Things just might be getting better. Lord knows, to quote the Beatles, it can't get no worse.

As long as the world's still spinning and Scott's not a manager, then everything is going to eventually end up okay.

Sunday, April 8, 2007

Beatrix Potter: A (Mostly Made Up) Biography ...

... yesterday we had a character storytime. It was Peter Rabbit. And I hate Peter Rabbit. I hate him to death.

Number one, it's a very difficult costume. There's feet and leggings and gloves and a complicated head piece that doesn't fully cover your head. Quite frankly it's a pain in my skinny brown ass.

Number two, the story, which is over 100 years old, is long and boring and written in an old english fashion that bores the crap out of children. It's an outdated book ("And Peter did grumble thusly whilst intertwined deep within the thorny gooseberry brush") that keeps its popularity mainly from parents and grandparents shoving a boring ass book down their children and grandchildren's throats. It's long-winded and outdated and boring as hell.

Last year I cancelled our scheduled Peter Rabbit storytime. This year I could not. And that was yesterday. And I struggled to try and find some way to turn Peter Rabbit into something cool that I could get behind.

I found a one page biography of Beatrix Potter. I'm supposed to read it to the kids but, as is her books, it's lengthy and boring and no fun at all. So what I did was I took it and re-wrote it and added numerous blatant lies to try and spice it up. I read it to the kids right before I read the story of Peter Rabbit and although the kids didn't seem to think it was funny I still think it's one of the funniest things I've ever done.

Here it is ...

(including some that were totally made up)

Helen Beatrix Potter was born in 1886, back when the entire world was black and white. She lived with her father, Superman, and her mother, Hanna Montana. She went by her middle name, Beatrix, because she thought it sounded pretty cool.

When Beatrix turned fifteen, she started writing a book in a journal that she wrestled off of a robot. That book would later become her most famous and well known novel ... "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone." She soon became rich and owned the biggest mansion in Mansion-land.

After that she wrote The Tale of Peter Rabbit. It was published in 1902, , back when people didn't have computers or televisions or even portable DVD players. Beatrix loved all the characters she created. She even talked to them, apparently, and she looked just like actress Rene Zellwegger.

Beatrix really owned a rabbit named Peter. She also owned rabbits named Josephine, Mopsy, Flopsy, Cottontail, Benjamin, Spike, William Henry Harrison, Mr. T, Pablo, Nelly, Dr. Kenneth Noisewater, Mickey Mouse, Big Chief Running Bear, R. Kelly, Spongebob, Ben Hur and Miss Kiki.

Cool stuff, I think.

Went to church this morning.

Cracks me up when I write that. Went to church this morning. Crazy ass stuff.

Emerald likes to go to sunday school with her cousin Deinna while her nana and papa go do their church thing. So for the past two weeks or so she's been spending a few days a week, a few massive chunks of hours a day practicing some big easter play song thing, so we HAD to go this morning. It was cute and we ate afterwards and found eggs. Then we got home and dyed eggs outside. It was all fairly cute.

It's strange for me, this whole easter thing. I never really celebrated easter growing up. Easter to me was just an excuse to dream during the Walt Disney World Easter Parade on tv, so to wake up early and dye eggs with the kids and hide them and do all that "parent" stuff, it just reminds me of who I am and how far I've come.

Here's some pictures ...

We're going to do an egg hunt in our backyard in a little bit, before it gets too dark and too windy. It's perfect outside right now. In Sacramento they mention the "Delta breeze" in the same repeatedly annoying fashion that Arizonans mention the "dry heat" but the breeze that we're getting is just absolutely perfect all over cool. It's such a nice feeling. I'm actually loving on Sacramento right now.

Things with the Burkitt family (Natasha's side) were all loud crazy yelling arguing angry madness for a while this afternoon but things have calmed down. Her family is very angry and they yell all the time as their primary means of communication and as far as I'm concerned any prolonged exposure to massive yelling makes me lose it. And I lost it a few times today. But things are better now.

I'm eating much food and candy, posting on my blog, chilling out, drinking Molson that's hidden in an AM/PM 44 oz. soda cup (so much for quitting drinking) and i'm freaking out over the book Live From New York by Tom Shales and James Andrew Miller. It's one of those books that I bought hella long ago and tried to read but didn't get far. Now (especially after spending a few months missing Studio 60) I can't seem to put it down. I've somehow managed to read about 100 pages in less than 24 hours, which is a major feat for someone with a wife and two screaming kids.

Things are pretty cool with me today. And I'm glad.

Here's the strange ass Spider-Man-hating song that Emerald sang at church today. Be sure to listen for my wife's laughing, especially when the kids start doing "the robot."

That's about it for me, Gotta get back to reading.

Peace out, bitches.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

(insert witty hipster headline here)

... this past monday I woke up early, worked out, drank a few cups of coffee, and I came to work feeling happy and positive and upbeat with a spring in my steap, all ready to kick me some serious ass. It looked like it was going to be a good day at work.

So right off the bat I should have known that something was wrong.

Well, turns out the closer in kids the night before (on a spring break weekend) called in sick and they didn't get anyone to close in there. There were massive piles on my desk plus no recovery of the section and a HUGE full black hand cart filled with books to be put away. And three carts of frontlist from the weekend. It took me from 9am to 2pm to get it all put away and that's not including the books that needed to be put away from THAT DAY as well as the new books that had just arrived.

Plus I covered the customer service desk's breaks (because Scott was apparently too busy being "Look at me, I'm Scott, watch me pretend to be a manager" to cover any breaks) and I even got stuck behind a register for about 20 or so minutes.

Take a good look at those crying eyes. This is me overworked.

In like two or three weeks we have our inventory and I'm not ready. I'm in no way ready. My section isn't ready. I'm overworked and my "employees" (he says with a laugh) are never allowed to stay in my section and do their job that they're supposed to be doing. Hell, even I'm not allowed to do my job. I'm trying not to lose it, not to sweat it, not to repeatedly slam my fist into the nearest available wall until it's a bloody stump.

Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit drinkin'.

And that ain't just a quote from Airplane, either. I'm serious here. I'm angry and snippy. I'm grumpy and pissed off. I have anger issues. I'm depressed. I'm deeply depressed. Plus I'm having sleeping promlems. WHEN I get sleep it's not enough. I'm exhausted all the time. I'm always tired. And my body is all over screaming in massive amounts of pain.

And I'm pretty sure I've got manic depression.

(dramatic pause)

All the sex my wife and I have been having re-e-e-e-eally helps take the edge off, tho.

Hell yeah.

As long as I'm getting some (ahem, getting a LOT!) then the world is an alright place. All is well with the world right now. The rightful order has been restored. As for me and my house, we will serve the lord of gettin' some. Everything is cool mellow vibes for me and my crotch because I be getting some.

To celebrate my massive sex-filled day off, here's some music for you and your punk ass, courtesy of the evil and sinister Dr. Borderz ...

Home Movies: Don't Put Marbles in Your Nose

Modest Mouse: Missed the Boat

Gnarls Barkley: Basically (U.K. alternate version of "Who Cares")

Rolling Stones: Citadel

Timbaland featuring The Hives: Throw it On Me

Ash: Burn Baby Burn

Chibo Matto: Birthday Cake

DJ Kootchie: Hate It Ain't So

Porno for Pyros: Pets

The Get Up Kids: Second Place

Partyben: Galvanize the Empire

Monday, April 2, 2007

Rough Weather Ahead ...

... I'm so fucking tired.

Now see, I don't talk about marital problems on my blog. You're welcome. It's strange to me. I can sit here and write jokes about retards or holocaust jokes or nasty details about my sex life but if Natasha and I have problems I will refuse to write about it here.

So I won't expound on the details of the various things my wife and I are working through. I'm not Michael Burns (no offense). All I'll say is that I'm tired. I'm tired and angry and sore and hungry and I'm trying my damnedest to try and feel happy again. Which is an uphill battle for me.

Storytime was a big success. We had about 35 to 40 people there watching the amazingly loud and silly craziness. However due to some rather personal scheduling problems my wife did not film the event so there's no YouTube footage for me to share, only a few fairly blurry photos of the very end, which was when my wife ran in. I'm still a bit upset about that (and I'm also still a bit upset about staying up until 4am waiting for her to come home) but I'll get over it eventually.

So here's the pics. It was a really good storytime and I'm excited about the plotlines yet to come. We're just getting started with this thing. BTW Captain Book's weakness is poetry ...

In other news I've quit drinking. Temporarily. I kinda had to and I'm not too excited about it.

See, I was depressed a few months ago and my so doc hooked me up with happy pills which tripped my balls out hardcore (which I liked) but eventually they just ended up making me even MORE depressed than before. I mean, I wasn't suicidal because that's just not in me nor will it ever be but I was definitely near the vicinity of that particular causeway, know what I'm saying?

So I got off that stuff and ended up diving headfirst into cases and cases of beer. In the past few weeks I've been drinking about a six pack of beer pretty much every single night. And I haven't been eating. And I've had chest pains and stomach problems even worse than the ones I usually have with my hideous stomach disease.

What's worse, even though my wife vehemently disagrees with me, is that I'm starting to develop a beer belly. It's the tiniest of bellies as far as bellies go but to someone like me with an eating disorder whose been skinny all his life it feels like the whole world is staring at my fat stomach.

So I've temporarily quit drinking. I'm trying to eat regularly and semi-healthy and not drink any alcohol at all for as long as I can.

The bad part about that is that I've developed this nasty silent temper. Things build up inside myself and pressure builds up more and more and more and it becomes this screaming white pain behind my eyes. I cannot express anger at all. It's not in me to get angry. But things at home and at work and with certain other rival stores have been pushing me and pushing me and it just succeeds in pushing me deeper and deeper into myself. I cut myself out of the rest of the world when I get angry. I'm listening to my iPod and I won't be talking to people and I'll be constantly ramming my fist into hard concrete walls until my knuckles get red and bleed internally. It's none too good.

Not drinking, not having some way to calm my ass down, is going to be really hard for me.

We have money, though. And that's good. We got our tax return a few days ago and what with us having two kids it's a ve-e-e-e-ery substantial return. And I know I should be happy about that. But a huge chunk of it went to massively backstocked bills and that usually knocks the wind out of any excitement I have about having money in the bank.

It's just so incredibly hard for us to live on just my pathetic little bookstore paycheck. See, Natasha works "occasionally" but her job has less to do with customer service and more to do with whips and chains. And she doesn't do it on any sort of regular basis, so it's pretty much just be at work doing the work of like four other employees, busting my ass for a small paycheck that doesn't even come close to covering my girls' needs.

I'm going to have to get a second job. That sucks so much ass.

My wife threw me a surprise party at Arizona. It was supposed to be this big party with a whole bunch of people from my high school and my elementary school days. It was supposed to be huge. But only three people showed up. A ton of people said they were coming but only three showed up. I'm trying to take that in stride and not get hurt and offended and cry about it and turn it into another brick in the wall.

There's rough weather ahead for me, I fear.