The Grill of My Dreams

I got up this morning and had some more leftovers for breakfast. I thought we might get out to teach Eaddie to ride the Grom after learning that Arkansas raised the engine size limit for 14-15 year old riders, but she didn’t want to get out of bed. Summer and I ended up going to town to do a little deal and grocery shopping for dinner.

I’d been seeing seasonal deals on grills and outdoor stuff, so I really wanted to look around for a new grill. Summer’s propane grill has seen better days, and Mom and Dad have one like my old one that’s missing the right table side of it. We ended up finding a dual-fuel propane/charcoal one with a griddle insert for $150. Then Summer ran into a couple guys she knew from Autozone that marked one down to $100 for us since it was missing the charcoal door handle. I figured I couldn’t beat that, so we took a price tag, picked up our groceries, and checked out. All that was left was to find someone with a truck to haul it home for me.

I dropped Summer off at her house and then went home to clean up. Brody said he could help me with the grill, so I waited around for him to get back with me. I didn’t realize he was out of town, but eventually he came through. When I got back to Walmart, they had closed the garden center door, so I had to find an employee to help me walk the grill through the store and out the front door. Brody got there just after we got outside, so timing was just about perfect. When we got to my house, he took the turn into my street just a bit too fast and tipped the grill over on its front side, but it didn’t look like there was any damage. We got it down and into the garage, and then I was off to Summer’s for dinner.

Summer made chicken and dumplings, and it turned out really great. I ate way too much though, and the heartburn ate away at me the rest of the night. We watched a couple episodes of Modern Family, and then she went to bed and Eaddie and I watched an episode of House to finish up the fifth season. She still can’t believe the show is still so good this many seasons in, and I keep telling her it gets better. It’s one of the few shows I think they did an excellent job of ending without fizzling out.

After that, I headed back home for the evening to rearrange in the garage a bit. I made just enough room to squeeze past the grill until I can find a cover for it to put it under the porch. I guess now I’ll have to find a way to get my old one to my parents’ house, but that shouldn’t be too bad. The new one is huge though. I can’t wait to try it.

Went looking for a hot deal on a grill, and found a grate one. Job well-done.

Own the Rolls

It was a bit rainy today, but that just made things muggy instead of cool. I spent the morning at the shop being a total boss with people reaching out to me for help left and right. It’s been satisfying enough that I don’t even mind the stress, because I get the reward of helping people without being the one on the front line.

Brody convinced Gary to go to CiCi’s for lunch, and even Zach and Thomas joined us. I loaded up after a light morning, and then spent the afternoon running around Oakland so I felt pretty good. I had to make it back to the shop as school ended because Thomas wanted to meet with us about the proposed salary schedule. We’re meeting with Judy tomorrow, so we wanted to make sure everyone was well-informed beforehand.

I worked a bit late, then headed to the shop to see Summer before going home. Mom and Dad came by to drop off some soybean milk after their trip to the Oriental food store. Then they came back a bit later with some bánh bao. In the midst of all that shuffling around, I was trying to calculate how good of a deal I was getting on paper towels and toilet paper on Amazon. I’ve descended into madness with a spreadsheet that calculates the cost per sheet, but at least now I know exactly how much it costs me to poop at home.

Poopaper to your door for less!

Maximum Saturation

Autumn and I got up this morning and went to McAlister’s for free cup day. They gave out 20 free tumblers to the first people in the store, and if I had known how few people would show up, we would have arrived 15 minutes before open rather than an hour and a half. The sun was intense, but the humidity made it hard to breathe. From that moment on, I basically stayed wet the entire day.

After an early lunch, Autumn left and I went home to contemplate working. I ended up just taking the whole day off since I had to burn three days before the end of the school year. I went to visit Summer at work to see if she wanted some lunch. Then I headed towards my parents’ house to see if Dad wanted to look for some tile. There was a bunch of construction along the way, which got me off-route. I made a split-second decision to stop in and see Grant, and then continued on to Dad.

I didn’t stay there long, because I had to get Summer some lunch at 1:30, so I ran all the way across town for some Hardee’s chicken strips. Then Dad picked me up from the shop and we went to Georgia Carpet Mills. I left the Murano with Summer to get an alignment next door at Hindsman’s.

The warehouse was super humid and stagnant, so I was sweating profusely the entire time we were there. We looked at a bunch of tile, got directed to some laminate for a while, and then ended up with five tile samples to take home. I figured at the end of the day, I would be pretty happy with just about anything.

Dad dropped me back off at the shop, and I still had to wait a while to get the car back. The girls failed to complete an appropriate amount of chores at home, so I went home to wait for Summer to get her gym time in, and then we went to Chili’s for dinner.

Why do people insist on living in places that are terrible a large percentage of the time?

The “S” is for “‘Spensive”

It was another quiet day at work, which meant I got to tinker with some older projects and things. I was ultimately successful with my Microsoft Office uninstall/upgrade task, and I think I have Web Help Desk configured in a way that will help me keep a better eye on both the junior and high schools.

Summer took the afternoon off and met me for lunch at Brangus. The food was good, but the service was lackluster, or at least mostly absent. I spent the afternoon at the junior high fighting a copy machine. It could have gone worse, but I was pretty sure it was the fault of the printer.

After school, I took Eaddie with me to the shop, then to the high school to pick up Autumn. Then I took them home where Summer had made a delicious pork chop dinner. We watched an episode of Glee, and then I had to head home to do some laundry.

The Samsung Galaxy S21 and its premium variants were announced recently, and Google Fi had a 50% discount promotion, so I finally started the process of porting my old Sprint number over. I’ll save money in the long run, but for now this is just another expensive toy. I figure I’ll eventually switch over to it as a primary device when the 90-day requirement runs out for the promotion.

Don’t worry, there’s no charge.

Pixar 2020: What if Black People Had Feelings?

I got some really good sleep last night, then woke up to pay some bills. Then I started researching some Samsung phones to decide whether to take advantage of a deal on Google Fi. While I was in the middle of that, Dad and Uncle Giao came over and dumped a bunch of old tech junk. Then Uncle Giao asked for me to find him a laptop and set it up with a Vietnamese keyboard. Everyone surrounded me, insisting that I could just “download it or something.”

Once they all left, I got a shower and headed to Summer’s for the evening. She ordered Domino’s after having to work all day, so I picked it up on the way. After we finished eating, Autumn put on Soul, which was at least better than Incredibles 2 in my opinion. Maybe I was just tired when we saw that in the theater, but I hadn’t dozed off at the movies in a looong time.

All this house does is sleep.

A Murderer Most Foul

I didn’t sleep great last night for the constant barrage of dreams. I had one in particular that had my heart racing as I attempted to avert a murderer. At the last moment, Summer moved her arm around me, which of course occurred in real time in my dream, so I snatched her hand away from me in a death grip to save my own life.

We both eventually made it in to work, alive. I was super tired, but fortunately wasn’t assigned anything particularly physically demanding. Mike and I just went to the high school and tried to sort out the student device returns to get a couple in order to file claims, and then get a count of what parts we thought we might need.

Ben called at one point, and seemed really excited when I answered the phone as Joe’s Crab Shack, so we settled on Sam’s for lunch. Mike actually went with us, so we juad had to stop by the shop to pick up Ben. I went with the crawfish po’ boy this time, looking for something a little more reasonable in price and volume. It was excellent, though if I’m honest, I wasn’t paying close enough attention and could have easily been served shrimp instead.

After lunch we got to leave early, so we just wrapped up a bit more sorting before heading out. I stopped by Superfast to see Summer just briefly, then went home until it was time to take Autumn to her Explorers group meeting.

Once I dropped her off, I went to Lowe’s and walked the store aisle by aisle looking for those stupid discounted power cables again. I walked every inch of that place and couldn’t find them, so either they’re up in storage somewhere, or their inventory really is just 12 off. Feeling a little defeated, I ended up sitting in my car messing with my Pixel Buds for a while before heading home and eventually to bed.

That was when the Grinch discovered that the true cost of Christmas was 15 points off his credit score.

The Highs and Lowe’s of Deal Hunting

We got up this morning and treated ourselves to breakfast at Denny’s before Summer left for the gym and errands. I had trouble getting out of bed in the first place, and after breakfast and two cups of coffee it wasn’t any better. Eventually I did get up and do a little bit of cleaning and rearranging in the house. Chairs once again fit around the dining room table, that has apparently existed underneath everything else all this time.

I got showered and finished getting ready just as Summer got back, and we went to Lowe’s to pick up an online order I placed, and to hunt for a clearanced extension cable somewhere in the store. Everything and everyone indicated they had 12 in stock somewhere, but after occupying several minutes of the kindest employee’s time, and subsequently wandering nearly every aisle one by one, we still could not find any of them.

Having worked up an appetite, we went to Colton’s for a fried onion and steaks. We happened to be seated by Greg and his whole family, but I didn’t notice for a while. He indicated that work tomorrow would be a complete toss-up. I’m really not looking forward to it after how exhausted I’ve been, but maybe it’s exactly what I need.

She’s just my special lady friend that lives in my house.

Dirty Gifting

I got up a bit earlier this morning so I could get to work for a Fat Daddy’s lunch and a game of Dirty Santa. Melinda somehow coerced the entire crew to participate, so of course we had a fair amount of disparity in the quality of gifts. I started out strong, was the victim of an untimely theft, scored what was probably the best gift in the lot, was victimized again, and ultimately left with a stuffed puppy in a Santa hat with a chocolate snowman.

School let out an hour early, so I didn’t really get any work done. I ended up going by Casey’s for a free pack of cookies, and then was asked to deliver Autumn to therapy just before making it home. Eaddie had to stay and clean house so their friends could come over to stay the night, so I dropped Autumn off with Summer and went on home for a few hours.

When the girls all eventually made it home, I came up and had some pizza with them. Then it was going to be a relatively early night, but Julie called with a deal that had me up racking my brain. At the end of it all, I just had to bite the bullet. I’ll figure out the details later.

No amount of over-preparation ever seems to help anyway.

Mic Hunt

I stopped by the multipurpose facility first thing this morning to sign back in to a couple of phones. Then I headed on up to my office to play work all day. Evidently it was Prime day, but I’ve never had much luck getting any decent deals. They did have Summer’s Fitbit Versa 2 on sale for the same price I paid last year, but there are two newer models out now, and company reviews haven’t been looking so great. I want to replace the watch she smashed in the bike crash, but I also want to see if anything better will come out.

Lunch actually sounded good around lunch time, so I placed an order at Wendy’s for their Pretzel Bacon Pub Cheeseburger. Right about that time, Zach invited me to lunch, so I told him he was too late and went to pick up my food. I really only ordered it because I thought they were open for dine-in, but when I got there, the entire seating area was blocked off. I ended taking my food back to the shop to eat, and then visited with the folks there for a bit afterward.

The afternoon was quiet, so I fired off an email to the high school staff to try and collect unused microphones. I only had a few people respond, even though almost nobody uses those microphones. At the end of the day, it only matters if I can’t get enough to equip the classrooms with the impaired kid anyway.

Summer left work early and took the kids to karate, so I took the extra time to go back to the Neighborhood Market for some more peaches. Then I went to my parents’ house for some fish soup for dinner. I ended up leaving when my sinuses sealed off, and went home to try and be a tiny bit productive before bed. Time weirdly seemed to slow down instead of speed up, but I still couldn’t get much inertia going.

I’d say it’s that time of year, but it always is.


Summer took Eaddie to the gym this morning while I got ready for work. Then they picked up Autumn and left just as I was leaving for work. It was a beautiful day out, so I knew I’d be coming home for the bike at lunch time.

I got to sit with a teacher for a while first thing, and actually helped him create some filters and learn how to take advantage of some of Gmail’s more advanced features. It felt really good to make such a difference for him, but sometimes I still don’t understand how more people don’t already know about these things, or take the time to figure them out themselves.

The day went by pretty quickly from there. I ended up taking a late lunch and ate the beef stew Julie gave me the other day. I still felt a little off from the morning, but I pulled myself together and rode back in to work. Overall it was a really quiet day, and I didn’t hear much from anyone else, though I guess that’s pretty typical these days.

After work, I changed clothes and went to get the girls for dinner. We stopped at the Neighborhood Market for some super cheap peaches. I got two big bags for just over three bucks. Then we went to my parents’ house for some more chow mein. Summer met us there as soon as she could get out of work. Then we all went home separately.

I had to run next door to help Bác Vân with a DVD when I got home. Then I spent the rest of the evening cleaning up my email and getting ready for bed.

It looks like a butt.