Monthly Archives: January 2014

Touch Typing

Touch typing is typing without having to look at the keyboard. It’s an essential skill in this age of computers and the internet. You learn how to read, you learn how to write, and you learn how to touch type. Fuck cursive. That shit was a waste of time. Touch typing should be second nature. If it’s not, than everything I know about Qwerty is wrong. The best thing about touch typing is just being in the zone and hearing the click-click-clack of your fingers transforming a blank page into something unique and creative. Each keystroke is an explorer discovering something new and exciting. The scratch of a pen over paper isn’t nearly as satisfying. Maybe Mario taught you touch typing, maybe it was Mavis Beacon. But it’s a skill that no person of the 21st century should be without.

Critically Rated at 16/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Wearing Your Uniform to Work

Some workplaces require their employees to wear a uniform. It kind of sucks, but you’re lucky to have a job so stop complaining. I have to wear a uniform at work, I know your pain. I keep my work shoes, shirt, pants, and gear in a backpack, and I get to work a few minutes early so I have time to change, grab a coffee, and hang out in the break room. It’s annoying having to lug my backpack around if I want to go somewhere before or after work, but it’s better than wearing my work clothes all day long. There are exceptions to everything of course. Some people drive to work and drive back home right after work, they don’t stop anywhere and they don’t have much interaction with anyone along the way. But if you rely on public transportation, wearing your uniform to work makes you stick out like a sore thumb. A lot of servers at The Cheesecake Factory wear their uniforms to work for some reason. They wear white collared shirts, white pants, and white shoes. They look like they are in a cult. Wearing your uniform to work makes you look like a tool, especially if you have to wear all white. Have a little self-respect and bring a change of clothes to work. You’ll feel better about yourself at the end of the day.

Critically Rated at 5/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Drought

California Governor Jerry Brown has recently declared the state to be facing the worst drought since record keeping began over a hundred years ago. There’s been practically no rain and that’s not so bueño, especially since we are an agricultural state. We can’t control the weather, but we can control our water usage and right now conservation is key. There are a lot of ways that you can keep water wastage to a minimum. For starters, I’ve quit drinking water. It’s beer and soda only from here on out. I’ve also started practicing the old policy of “if it’s yellow let it mellow; if it’s brown flush it down.”  I’ve also stopped washing my hands, and I use deodorant instead of taking a shower. It’s amazing how much body odor a stick of Old Spice can suppress. I use Febreeze instead doing laundry. I’ve thrown away all the houseplants and I left the front door open so the cat can find its own water source. There are a lot of tips and tricks to help keep water usage down to a minimum. I’m doing my part. What the hell are you doing to help?

Critically Rated at 9/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Reed’s Flying Cauldron Non-Alcoholic Butterscotch Beer

Reed’s Flying Cauldron Non-Alcoholic Butterscotch Beer is a butterscotch cream soda and a blatant rip-off of Harry Potter’s butterbeer. J.K. Rowling would sue the people at Reed’s but she already has too much money. It tastes like what you would expect. It’s sweet, slightly carbonated, and is actually healthier than most sodas. It’s gluten free and 100% natural. It’s made from purified carbonated water, cane sugar, vanilla extract, natural caramel, natural flavors, and stevia rebaudiana leaf extract. Somehow that shit all fits together to create a tasty beverage. The label doesn’t mention anything about caffeine so I assume that it’s caffeine free, but I would avoid drinking one before bed just to be safe. It’s not that good of a soda, but the novelty factor makes it worth checking out.

Critically Rated at 12/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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The Game of Life (game) (obviously)

The Game of Life is a popular board game made by Milton Bradley. I think that it’s more fun and entertaining than Monopoly. Monopoly can ruin friendships and I’ve never experienced a major blowup while playing Life. The game play is simple. You start at the beginning, you spin a wheel to determine how many spaces you can move, and you get to decide your fate. The game gives you options. Do you want to go to college or just jump out into the work force? Do you want to get married or stay single? Do you want kids? Do you want to be a rock star or a scientist? You can buy insurance, you can buy stocks, they even have promissory notes. Doesn’t that sound like a fun way to spend a rainy Saturday? The best part about The Game of Life is spinning the wheel at the start of your turn. It always reminded me of the Big Wheel on The Price is Right. It clicks and it clacks and it spins around. It’s way more fun than rolling dice.

Critically Rated at 14/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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“I Was Just Thinking That”

I remember there was this time where I was watching an episode of Lost during its heyday with my friend. I mentioned that I thought Sawyer was lying and my friend responded with, “I was just thinking that!” It was bullshit. He wasn’t thinking that. I know he wasn’t thinking that. He would have said it if he was thinking that. He merely agreed with what I was saying and wanted to take credit for it. Good ideas aren’t universal and saying “I was just thinking that” is a copout. Don’t take credit for other people’s ideas and observations. And don’t make excuses for your stupidity. And try to avoid saying “I was just thinking that!”… Because you weren’t and everybody fucking knows it.

Critically Rated at 6/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Deadpool & Cable Ultimate Collection Book 2 (comic)

Deadpool is the Merc with the Mouth. Cable is the time-traveling mutant from the future on a crusade to save the world. And they teamed up for an awesome comic in the mid-2000s. Deadpool & Cable Ultimate Collection Book 2 is a trade paperback and collects issues #19-35 and includes the following storylines: Why, When I Was Your Age; Bosom Buddies; Sticky Situation and Living Legends; Born Again; The Domino Principle; Civil War; and Six Packs and Powder Kegs. They even include the letter pages so it feels more retro and real.

This isn’t a comic for noobs. You have to work your way into this one. The Marvel Universe is already pretty complex, and there are way too many characters and subplots for casual comic book readers to keep up with. But Deadpool is one of the best and most interesting comic book characters and you don’t have to know what is going on to be able to enjoy his antics and one-liners.

I won’t even bother with giving out plot details and story outlines. You’re either going to read this collection, or you aren’t.  It’s a comic book. Crazy shit happens in crazy ways. Everything is surrealistic, unrealistic, over the top, and awesome. What more do you want?

Critically Rated at 13/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Neighbors in Time

It’s kind of funny how life goes in cycles. My parents were both born and raised in San Francisco. They grew up, married each other, and moved to Marin County to start a family and wound up with four kids. Now my sister and I live in San Francisco. We don’t live together, but we both live in the Sunset District and that’s also where our parents lived. My house is just a few blocks from where my dad once lived, and my sister is close to my mom’s childhood home. It’s kind of cool. It’s like we are neighbors in time. I go to the same places that they used to go to. I ride the same bus lines that they did. I do the same things that they were doing thirty years earlier. Being neighbors in time makes me feel more connected to them. The past is more present than you think.
Critically Rated at 14/17
Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Getting Citric Acid in Your Cut

One of the worst things about bartending is when you get citric acid in your cut. Most of the time it’s a cut that you didn’t even know that you had. Even the slightest drop of lemon or lime juice is enough to make you cringe. It’s painful enough getting a bullshit minuscule cut, but citric acid makes it ten times worse. Those fuckers from Jackass were willing to give each other self-inflicted paper cuts, but they drew the line at lemon juice. I wouldn’t wish getting citric acid in a cut upon my worst enemy. It’s something that no person should have to endure. There should be a charity to prevent it from happening. I know that I would donate a few bucks to such a worthy cause.
Critically Rated at 4/17
Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Aging Porn Star

There are very few things more sad and depressing than an aging porn star. I used to think that Jenna Jameson was sexy, beautiful, and stunning. Now she’s haggard and decrepit beyond description. She just has too many miles on her cooter and that’s not really attractive. It’s kind of boner-killing in fact. Nothing makes you more flaccid than an aging porn star. It’s not good porn if you can’t get hard. An aging porn star makes you think about your own mortality, and that’s not a good thing when you’re just trying to get off. The porn industry is a business that you should only be in for a few years. And I’m saying this as a career server. You should retire from the game when you start approaching your forties. Nobody wants to see flaps and folds and wrinkles in your nether regions.
Critically Rated at 5/17
Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Secret Hiding Spot

Kids have forts. Adults have secret hiding spots. Everybody should have a secret hiding spot, their own little fortress of solitude. It should be a place to escape to when you need a little peace and quiet. It’s a place to reflect and a place to take girls to. My secret hiding spot is a park/viewpoint on a hill overlooking the San Francisco Bay. It’s easy to miss and hard to get to. Consider yourself lucky if I’ve taken you there. A secret hiding spot should be a shared secret. You don’t want everybody to know about it, but it should be too cool to keep it to yourself. Tell a few trustworthy people about it and it becomes an unofficial clubhouse for your group. You’ll meet there, you’ll drink there, you’ll smoke there. Your secret hiding spot should be a place you are proud of, and if it’s not than it’s not worth keeping secret.
Critically Rated at 15/17
Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Rivalry

Sports are great and rivalries make them even better. Everyone has a favorite sports team, and most teams have a rival that you hate. The Giants hate the Dodgers, the Seahawks hate the 49ers, the Celtics hate the Lakers, the Red Sox hate the Yankees (and so does everyone else). A good rivalry makes the game more intense and interesting. There is more at stake when you are playing your enemies. It’s pride, it’s honor, it’s bragging rights. You can have a losing season but still feel like champions if you beat your rivals. Case in point, I’m a Giants fan. We had a mediocre season last year, while the Dodgers won the division and went on to the playoffs. But the Giants beat the Dodgers in the season series, so at least I have something to rub in the faces of Dodgers fans. It’s not much, but it’s something so I’ll take it.
Critically Rated at 15/17
Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Those Red Berries That Get Birds Drunk

I remember my little sisters once had a friend over and their friend left our house in a huff because my sisters wouldn’t let her feed my dog those red berries that get birds drunk. You know what I’m talking about… Those orangish-red berries that grow in bunches on that bush… I don’t know the name of the plant, I’m not a botanist, but birds eat them and then they fly into windows and die. It would be sad if it weren’t so funny. It’s evolution in action. It’s survival of the fittest. Some guys cants hold their booze, and some birds can’t handle their berries. I like those red berries that get birds drunk. I haven’t tried them, but I like them. They make life more interesting.
Critically Rated at 13/17
Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Slow Clap

A slow clap is when something climactic happens and a lone person acknowledges it by clapping, slowly at first, then faster and faster as people start joining in, and the clapping builds in intensity and loudness. A slow clap is the Hollywood movie cliche that you most want to experience in real life. You’ve always harbored a secret desire to witness something amazing or inspirational just so you can start a slow clap. You’ve probably tried it at least once. Maybe at your sister’s wedding to mixed results. It will happen. You just got to recognize your moments and seize your opportunities. I did a successful slow clap at a funeral once. It was the highlight of my day.
Critically Rated at 15/17
Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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86

86 is restaurant code for when an item is temporarily out of stock. For example, you are 86 ranch dressing if you run out of it. You might be 86 New York Strips for a few hours if the steaks aren’t fully thawed yet. It’s a 68 when you get the item back in stock and/or you can sell it again. 86 can also be taken out of the restaurant and applied to real world situations. It’s fun to say that you’ve 86ed your bad habits. It’s even more fun to refer to recently deceased celebrities as being 86ed. You might offend some people, but most people will think you’re hilariously witty and smart. 86 is a practical term. You should adopt it as your own and use it as your catchphrase.
Critically Rated at 14/17
Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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The Awkward Acquaintance Hug

I saw an old old coworker on the bus today. It had been a few years since I had last seen her and we gave each other the obligatory awkward acquaintance hug. The awkward acquaintance hug is that hug you have when you see somebody that you used to be close with but haven’t seen in a long time. It’s uncomfortable. It makes you feel uncomfortable. It makes them feel uncomfortable. It makes everyone unfortunate enough to witness it feel uncomfortable. You fumble your way into an embrace that you hold for slightly too long. You ask about how they are doing. You give each other updates and mention anything newsworthy. Then you wish them good luck and find an excuse to leave. A few days later you mention that you saw so-and-so on the bus and you have a new story to share in the break room.
Critically Rated at 8/17
Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Killing Time

Sometimes you have a few hours in between things you have to do. You’ll get out of work early and have a few hours to go before you have to meet your friend for dinner. You have to find some way to pass the time. Killing time is better than simply waiting. There are lots of things to do to kill time. You can look at cool things on the internet, you can grab a bite to eat, you can get a few drinks at a bar. Nobody can judge you because you’re not getting drunk if you’re killing time. You’re not drinking, you are multitasking. Killing time is easy to learn but hard to master. I’m still learning, but I’m getting the hang of it.
Critically Rated at 10/17
Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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