Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Pick Me! Pick Me!

" Windfall films are on the hunt for a practitioner who wants to explore their sense of adventure, as the company looks to re-enact a famous 18th Century voyage across the Pacific Ocean.
" The company is looking for an accountant who will be responsible for the ships finances, otherwise known as a ‘purser'.
" If selected, the lucky accountant will set sail in a historically accurate replica boat this summer, but will have to survive on basic rations and endure extremely tough weather. "
AccountancyAge - Taking Stock: Accountant needed for maritime adventure show
Hey, I'm an accountant! And, a boater! Not to mention surviving on basic rations and enduring extremely tough weather is the very definition of Tax Season!

Sign me the freak up!

Still cracks me up.

It's a little early in the year to be posting this one but it still cracks me up.

In about seven weeks, it'll make me cry.

How many stars for a cup of coffee?

" In the long run, perhaps there will be an entire ecosystem built around Starbucks Rewards. " Forbes - Yet Another Starbucks Loyalty Miscue?
125, is the answer. Who has pockets that big? Do I have to count them all out when I want a cup of coffee? Are there star denominations? That would make them a helluva lot easier to carry around.

Listen, if I don't have my cup of coffee there's no way I can even count to 125 and unless Starbucks fixes its website, I'll never know how many I have. (Starbucks isn't keen to tell you how many stars you have lest you decide not to accumulate more stars than absolutely necessary.) And, now, if you don't earn stars fast enough they'll expire, just like real stars, making it really tough to keep track of them all.

Beginning in April, you'll have to accumulate 125 stars for a cup of coffee before they start to expire - which is after six months. At $0.50 per star, that's a minimum of $62.50 - or $125 per year. For. A. Cup. Of. Coffee.

But that's only for people who have earned 300 stars in a year ($150). To recap, you have to spend $150 just to be eligible to spend another $62.50 to earn a free cup of coffee. But once you've earned 300 stars, you can keep spending $62.50 per cup of coffee as long as you continue to spend $150/year. Otherwise, you have to start over. And, what of those expiring stars? How does a person keep 300 stars in one's pocket if there's a whole in the bottom of it?

If you already have stars in your pocket, they will be re-valued at 11 each. But, in six months, they'll be valued at 0. Try to keep up.

Does anyone remember punch cards - get your card punched 12 times and you can cash it in for a free cup of joe? Seemed a lot easier. And, in my mind, it created the habit of stopping in and buying something. But, apparently, I'm not buying enough.

I was in a Starbucks recently, not far from the original store. It had no chairs but it had a lot of power strips. Message: you can use our wifi for free as long as you don't stay long.

And, starting in April, as long as you spend a lot of money while you're standing there.

Friday, February 19, 2016

How to make pizza last forever.

Don't eat it.

It's Friday and tonight we're going to do - nothing. We're renting a movie (okay, that's something) and eating leftover pizza.

I'm pretty sure that pizza's been in the freezer since sometime last year.

We could go see a local production of Avenue Q. Smokey Joe's Cafe is also playing nearby. Hateful Eight is in the movie theater. (That one's tempting.) Next weekend, it's opera. The weekend after that it's Ron White. The weekend after that it's Bacon Eggs & Kegs and the following weekend it's the local brewfest. Last weekend, it was How to Succeed in Busness and a few days before that, we saw Adam Sandler.

But tonight, pizza and a movie.

We should be able to finish off the last of it sometime in April, I think.

Long Snapper News

The Columbian - Thursday, February 18, 2016

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

I didn't know!

Who knew Thingadailies was a thing? I certainly didn't. If I had, I would have been doing things daily. As it is, I've been mostly avoiding doing things.

Of course, some things can't be avoided. Like, death and taxes although most of us would like to avoid both of those for as long as possible. But, since my day job is as a tax preparer, the only thing I'm managing to avoid - at the moment - is death. (Let's hope I continue to be successful in both endeavors.)

The only good thing about preparing taxes - today, at least - is that I've reached the end of the day without wanting to kill someone. This is notable because that's all I've wanted to do since I flipped the page from January on my wall calendar two weeks ago. We changed software providers this year which saved the firm an amount approximating half my salary and the learning curve has proved quite frustrating. Added to that are data conversion woes and follow ups with technical support to get it all up and running properly.

Twice, I've been near tears. Once, I thought about quitting. Last week, I offered my boss four figures to switch back to the old software provider (which is when I found out that wouldn't be nearly enough money).

I'm trying to have a good attitude. Really, I am. And it might be paying off. Today is the first day it all seems to be working. It seems to finally be coming together. I did a tax return today and nobody died!

Shame, though, as my frustration of late has been the reasoning for drinking martinis after work. Now, I'll have to find something else to do with my evening hours.

But, now, there's Thingadialies. I can be doing things. (Daily.)

This time of year I have to remind myself.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016


I've been in a desert the last few days, literally and figuratively. No wifi, no cable, but lots and lots of sun and sand. Nothing to do but lie about and read. Roughing it.

Plugged back in now but while I was gone a whole bunch of people decided to get their tax stuff organized so it looks like tax season is in full swing. Freezer is stocked with leftovers. Office is stocked with coffee and chocolate. Should be set for a while.

I also have several weekend diversions planned over the next few weeks so it won't be all work and no play. Not yet. That starts just after March 15th. Then, things get crazy.

Sun is just coming up and I've already drained my coffee cup. Guess that means it's time to go to work.

Makes me long for the desert.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Being an accountant is not without it's high points.

The first tax return came in earlier this week and landed on my desk yesterday. Meanwhile:

IRS Systems Outage Shuts Down Tax Processing

This is so beautiful, I can hardly stand it. But the good news is this:
“At this time, the IRS does not anticipate major refund disruptions; we continue to expect that 9 out of 10 taxpayers will receive their refunds within 21 days.”
That tenth guy is just SOL.

Geek Heaven

Have you made your Pi Day plans yet? That's okay, you still have time. It's a little more than five weeks away - March 12.

You could think about signing up for this: The West Coast KenKen Tournament At Pacific Science Center. Registration is limited to the first 200 people to sign up so you better hurry. There's at least one signed up already.

That's right. I registered.

My best time for a 9x9 is something like 15 minutes. They usually take an hour, although, frequently, I can get it under 30 minutes. Don't know what I'm talking about? KenKen is a puzzle that's often included in the newspaper somewhere near the crossword puzzle.

Don't know what a newspaper is? You can play it online here or download it to your mobile device here.

The tournament is usually held in December. In New York. At the Chappaqua Public Library. It's on my calendar every year but I never go. But, now, it's coming to me. If you want to see what a KenKen tournament looks like, you can watch a suspenseful short movie about the first KenKen Puzzle Tournament here.

Kind of makes you want to go, right? I just printed out some practice puzzles. I'm super excited.

Hubby wants to know if there are cheerleaders. I'm thinking there should be. T-shirts, signs, cheers. Oh, yeah, baby! I can't wait!

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

That's what it's called.

Beezow Doo-doo Zopittybop-bop-bop Arrested for Assault: Police
" Zopittybop-bop-bop, who grew up outside Chicago and later moved to Madison, Wisconsin, was born with the name Jeffrey Drew Wilschke. He legally changed it in 2011. He said in an interview with the Wisconsin State Journal his first name means "the explosion of awareness of the interconnectedness of the infinite love in the universe." Additionally, Doo-doo "is the struggle of our daily lives with that awareness, that with love comes chaos." "

Who is Shirley, anyway?

Woman Pulls Over Cop for Speeding, Gets Apology

" 'The reason I pulled you over today,' Castillo began much like many statements given by officers, 'is because I saw you since Miller Drive when you were first jumping onto the Palmetto, and you were pushing 90 miles an hour.' "

You go, girl. I would have just written a letter.

I did that once, back in the day, when I lived in Mayberry, I saw a police officer pull a u-turn but he didn't have his lights on.

I wrote a letter.

No one wrote back.

But, that was before cell phones or social media were invented. Or blogs. Now, I might blog about the injustice of cops breaking traffic laws.

Surely, that could make a difference.

Designer Genes

The UK Just Green-Lit Crispr Gene Editing in Human Embryos
" YESTERDAY, UK FERTILITY regulators gave the green light to gene editing in viable human embryos—a controversial first step toward what some see as a future of designer babies. Cue the dystopian think pieces. "

Microsoft Surface?

Cloud Computing Center Submerged Underwater

" 'This is speculative technology, in the sense that if it turns out to be a good idea, it will instantly change the economics of this business,' Whitaker said. "

What could go wrong?

Monday, February 1, 2016

Seems like there's a joke in here somewhere.

Secured perimeter fence included.

I know some Oregon ranchers who might be interested.

Or, Donald Trump.