Monday, August 31, 2009

Society vs. The Individual

First off, no this isn't political. It's just some observations noted from comments by another blogger Scott on some posts I read, as well as a conversation I had over the weekend with a good friend of mine.

Scott and I have traded comments on other blogs considering the issue of strength of personality and manliness today versus that of previous generations. When it comes to issues of being stronger willed and more mechanically adept I have always come down on the side of older generations, who I felt were able to deal with physical hardships that came with a pre-modern society. They were able to fix things up, like vehicles and houses with a certain sense of efficiency coupled with necessity, as they didn't have the money to throw away the broken, nor the will to waste anything. Today, we have products manufactured with so much electronic equipment to tally up calculations and/or run our daily lives. Scott has countered that while some physical labors were mastered more by those generations than the current, social influences, including global communications, information exchange, and a litany of societal needs and pressures are probably far more complicated for the older generation than the younger. And in itself, the young mind is better at shifting its adaptations to constant change whereas a man of the depression era would pretty much break down mentally, not being able to adapt. (not exactly his words, but a personal characterization of his thoughts) To an effect, it is hard to remain statically 'real' in this everchanging world of ours, and for those of us who are somewhat set in our ways, it can make life difficult. But no worries, if we start feeling overwhelmed or bad about things, we always have the latest pharmaceutical to re-balance our brain chemistry!

Today, you find endless opinions abounding from every Tom, Dick, and Harry in your life. You should do this, don't do that, whatever. Anyways, my friend, Adam called with a question as to what he should be doing with his life at this moment. And of course, you all know me, I have tons of antiquated and personally biased advice to hand out with or without being asked. The sooner you all listen to me, the better my world will be! HA!

Adam has had a lifelong dream of learning the martial arts of all varieties, and eventually opening up his own dojo to teach others the same disciplines. In the course of some of his training, he has met up with a lot of people from the police department in his area. All are saying he would be a good fit for the department. With his size, strength and go-get-em attitude they say make a perfect candidate for him joining the force. However in this area, Philadelphia, cops getting shot apparently is a semi-regular event, and he has heard the same officers who have been trying to recruit him, echanging stories of this officer or that officer from whichever precinct having either been killed or wounded in action.

With certain financial responsibilities for his cousins in his care, he looks at the financial aspect of things, as the officers tell him, that the dpeartment will pay for his training academy time (along with the paycheck) and he would be starting out at around $60,000 per annum. He has money coming in, but its more of a money in-money out situation, and the police paycheck would greatly help out in that arena. At the same time, if he takes on the police duties he has to put his dream on hold that much longer, and to boot, he hadn't really considered being a police officer that high on his priority list. He was looking at the money now, versus happiness later, if he survived it all in the first place.

I too, in my security gig, have faced pressure to change my position at times. I have had my supervisors trying to get me to be a supervisor when an opening had arrived. I looked at the money and initially thought that things would be much easier with my pay going up by a prety high percentage. But, at the same time, it would have bought me less sleep, or higher child care bills that would cancel out a large portion of that pay increase. I would also be looking at a lot more stress than my current position gives me.

I think part of the pressure to change wasn't selfless on the part of the people doing the recruiting. Like a military recruiter, there's always a benefit to the person trying to talk you into it, whether its money or personal. For Adam's situation, I don't know about money going into these officer's pockets, but the knowledge that they might have a good fitted person that may end up being their partner and someone they know they can trust to back them up from the get go. In my case, as one of my supervisors put it at the time, he would have less to worry about when he wasn't working because he knows I would do the job much better than some other possible applicants. Not that I don't mind helping this supervisor out, he is a great friend of mine on top of being my boss, but the stress that comes with the job and my inherent need for underlings to operate in a very exact manner of my expectations would only further complicate my life.

I find that oftentimes as persons, we see ourselves doing one thing or another, despite our strengths and weaknesses, because thats where see ourselves. And then you have outsiders (society) who see us in a certain way, whether by our decision on how and what to expose ourselves to them, or by some potential they see in us. It might be for our own benefit, theirs or both. Its hard to say. But as I said before, EVERYONE has their opinions of what one should do, and a certain segment of those who will push and push and push to coerce you into following their plan for you.

In this day in age, a lot of people let the money do the talking, and worry about consequences later. But sometimes, you have to wonder if the money is worth it, worth sacrificing yourself and your dreams to do some job or career that you don't really care for, just because the money will be there NOW, instead of passing on it and seeing how your preferred option might take you through life.

Don't mind me, just some of the wierd stuff that passes through my mind in this complicated world. Personally I'd like to go back a few decades when it all seemed a whole lot simpler. Which begs me to ask...back then was real life like a sitcom, where all your problems got solved in a half hour?

Friday, August 28, 2009

Taking Chance

Yesterday, after completing work and filling up the patrol car with gas, I checked the Redbox machine at the gas station to see if there was anything of interest. I picked up a Kevin Bacon movie (yeah yeah yeah, he's in 4 out of every 3 movies made, but still...) called "Taking Chance."

Based on a true story, Bacon plays the role of Lieutenant Colonel Michael Strobl, USMC (ret.) who volunteers to escort the deceased body of Marine PFC Chance R Phelps. Phelps was killed in action in Iraq, and Strobl escorts his body and personal effects from the Dover AFB Mortuary Center (where all military members deceased overseas processes through) to his family, funeral and burial in Wyoming. The story evolved out of the escort trip report LTC. Strobl had to write up, and detailed the thoughts, people, and events he experienced over those few days. It was a really touching story. I almost got choked up a few times, which means it has to be a very personally touching story, since I tend to suppress such reactions.

I would recommend to all my readers to take a look at this movie. Afterwards, in the special features you get to hear from his fellow soldiers and his real family about Chance Phelps as a person, family member, and a Marine. It really is a touching tribute to one of the many of our fallen soldiers, may they rest in peace.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Hey, I'm Working Here...

So that all my readers know, my wife came up with this title. I thought it was a pretty clever play on words. In fact, if it came out of my mind it would have made "Mookie's Hall of Fame Title's" list. But unfortunately, it can't since the entry was made by an outsider (I'll be getting slapped for that comment). But it's not my fault...I didn't make the rules, I just write here.

Some of the other title options I had considered prior to this:
1. Mikey Meets a Prostitute (which could either be a cheesy made-for-tv movie, or part of the stream of straight to DVD, or an odd title fr one of those old educational films we used to watch in school with the deep-voiced narrator)

2. Midnight Rendevous (also a made-for-tv title on one of those icky "adult" channels which are clearly resposible for the spread of STDs like cooties)

3. Rentacops: Special Whore Edition (a nice play on the special episodes of COPS with a dash of Super Troopers)

But anyways...
So there I was driving down a street in Des Moines through the Drake University neighborhood on my way to the ghetto Burger King (Whopper Jr's with Cheese for $1.27 after tax!!!). I notice near the campus area McDonald's (late nite menu here does not include dollar menu items, so I don't go here) there are three people and this lady walks away from two men, occasionally turning back to say something while gesturing. I couldn't hear any of it, as I had the windows up and was chilling in the air-conditioned paradise that is my patrol car. As I get closer she waves me over, so I pull into a parking lot near her. She walks over, and after asking what she needs, she informs me that she needs to get in with me and get out of there, guys bugging here, blah blah blah. I hesistate, but end up relenting since I'm such a compassionate individual. That was mistake number one.

She gets in, and tells me she has an apartment about 20 blocks away. Whatever, guess I'm skipping less than nutritional stomach comfort to do a good deed with what little spare time I have during my shift. As we drive along, she gives me this sob story about having run out of gas, her fighting with her man, who kicked her out. Mistake number 2 is that I somehow didn't hear this last part until later when I was analyzing last night's episode after the fact.

Then comes the kicker. I could tell this chick was a bit more than just haggard from a rough lifestyle (but I try not to judge). The saying "Never judge a book by its cover met its exception this night. Okay, correction, Not heeding a warning upon that notice was mistake number 1. Shift the others to Mistakes 2 and 3respectively. After telling me her sob story, things shift tracks and she tells me, "I don't do this kind of thing, but maybe we could help each other out?"

Well, first off I'm married with 2 kids (which I brought up). And my wife would have woken up in the middle of the night having sensed something wrong with her bat signal or whatever, ran top speed down and killed me and the hooker before any illegal acts would have concluded.
Secondly, I'm in a highly marked security patrol vehicle, in a nicely visible uniform that also includes my name on a shiny little pin (which I also brought up questioning her with great incredulity). Anybody up late nights could report prostitution acts going on and if the REAL cops showed up, I'm out a job, a wife, 2 kids, and walking to whichever freeway overpass I'll be living under...and gain a court date, and a possible date in jail..and by date I don't mean a day, I mean BUBBA! As a man, I'm all about sex, but c'mon, not THAT kind.

I tell her no, and ask where I can drop her off. She avoids the question, and proceeds to tell me how she's a licensed beautician, masseuse, and has a Master's Degree in Oral Sex. Maybe, I'm naive, but did she really expect me to find that humorous, much less enticing? And she even said she went to school for 4 years to earn it. Yeah, this skeezer (and I mean skeezer as lovingly as any of my beloved rap artists do in their songs)is earning something alright, but it ain't my business.
She reached over and grabbed my hand and is trying to rub all up on me pleading for my help (MONEY) in exchange for her help (God only knows what extra goodies might come at no additional cost to me! But only if I call RIGHT NOW!!!). The car came to a halt, and I got her out.

I drove around the rest of the night with the smell of whore in the car and on my uniform. the little phrase, "smelling like a french whore"? Yeah it definitely applied here. YUCK!

But out of all of this I achieved a milestone in my life. At ONLY 30 years old, I've met my first whore, err for the politically correct people, I met my first Professional of Sensual Stress Relief!

I'd say I was working here, but then again, she could have countered with the same statement.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

What the heck has happened to my TV?

Growing up, we had an old 1979 Magnavox TV set. It wasn't overly big, but it was definitely old. Some of you will have to brace yourselves, but in order to change the channel we would have to go up to the tv itself and turn a little knob. Or in a Dad's case, he would send the kids to do this, at least that is my memory of how the Evil Duane operated our household.

That being said, as television sets changed, gained remote controls, and all kinds of other features, the programming did not, at least not on network tv. The Evil Duane was too cheap for cable as we grew up, and he seems to have passed that gene on to me. The Evil Duane, now living with only my mother and two dogs that seem to have been deemed replacement children, has a Dish, so he can watch 3947893 million channels at the click of a button. Maybe some day, after I have banished the children into adulthood and their own places, I too will get premium programming. Afterall, that is the only way now to get your fill of sports on the tube.

When I was growing up, SitComs were the order of the evening on network tv during the week. During football season you had college games on all the channels starting around 11am on Saturdays, right after all the good cartoons were over. On Sundays you got to watch NFL football, and of course the beloved Monday Night Football the next day. All the commercials were about one form of painkiller or another, the 17 brands of toothpaste that all claimed were preferred by 4 out of 5 dentists, along with other household products, and advertisements for new toys and cereal. There was nothing else out there to bore you to death. A kid could understand pretty much every commercial out there. Life was simple and good. You bought Tylenol for your headaches, Doans for your backaches, washed your dishes with Palmolive, ate Lucky Charms, and made sure your mom had enough Massengill and Maxipads...cuz thats what women apparently needed back then, AND, that's what the tv told you to buy.

As I was perusing the television over the past week, I really took notice of the difference in things. While football season is just starting, on saturdays you will see a couple of college football games, maybe (and usually they arent even games you're truly interested. You just watch them cuz its a football game and you like football). Sunday still gives you a few NFL games, but Monday Night Football is now requiring you to go get cable or the Dish Network in order to view it.

Sitcoms, while there may be a few stil going, are a thing of the past. No time on tv for shows that send a positive message through impossibly odd scenarios and weird tv families. Nope, primetime, which was once the time when the family got together to watch some good old television while eating TV Dinners, has totally changed. Now you are faced with a massive list of "reality" shows, which for the life of me, I don't get. First off, they aren't even as realistic as the cheesy sitcoms. Secondly other than ruining a few people who are looking for their 15 minutes of fame, I just don't see the overall point of them, other than to amuse mindless people who would prefer to see other people get screwed over in some overhyped drama cued in by the shows producers to gain some ratings and pull in some cash from advertisers. The primetime slot is loaded with shows that no child should really be watching, and this includes a few of my favorite tv dramas that I personally like.

Also, commercials suck these days. Sure, once in awhile you get a few quality ones, but overall, they are stupid. It's no longer what cereal to buy, or which beer makes you cooler (because we all know from growing up in the old days of watching tv that beer drinkers have a really great time being attractive and having pool parties with other attractive beer drinkers!). The one household product I really ever see is toilet paper ads. Apparently this is a highly competitive market. But now, we have medical ads of all sorts, because being normal isn't good enough anymore. Ask your doctor about the new amazing drug, Screwitol. After asking your doctor if you need Screwitol, he'll inform you that either A: its for treating symptoms of a condition that affects only the other gender, or B: It'll treat your mood swings no matter what they are, but can cause a combination of diarrhea and constipation simultaneaosly, causing you to want to blow out your own brains, but only in some cases. In which case:

WE have advertisements for every lawyer the phone book can list! Because if you've been wronged in any way (purposely or not), offended, injured, or you're just in a pissy mood, you can call 1-800-Lawyer, or some other local phone number (see your local commercial ad for proper listing) and you're just a step away from making a million bucks in a lawsuit! Now, if that lawsuit says they can pay you in installments after the settlement is reached:

PEACHTREE, JG WENTWORTH, or a million other companies can get you YOUR money NOW, cuz its YOUR MONEY AND YOU WANT IT NOW!! You can sue and settle your way to an extravagant lifestyle, and if you get bored with all that old jewelry:

Call Cash4Gold now, and get the highest prices for your unwanted or unused gold!!! It's easy!!

Or, you can go to one of 27 random regional universities that advertise in your area and get the dream job you've always wanted. Ones that often could've beeen acquired without the expensive degree they are offering you for your future. Because making $9.50/hr as a rentacop is a dream come true!!! And, here's the best part..all those silly ads for getting your criminal justice degree, I can do almost everyone of them without having shelled out the cash to them and being saddled with even more student loans. BUT, on the honest side of things, you do have a piece of paper that says you went past high school and that can land you a lot more jobs, so maybe that isn't so bad.

But what I want to know...where's my friggin cereal commercials, and why are the only good cartoon characters left on tv being suited up as superheroes?....bring back the plain old Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, et al.

And bring back my friggin sports...i shouldn't have to pay endless amounts of dollars every month to watch what should be free, dammit!! (well, that just blew my credibility as a conservative out of the water didn't it?)

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Update on the Man Eating Bat Terrorist

Dateline Des Moines, IA

In an unprecedented move, Rentacop forces moved in on the Hoyt Sherman Place Wednesday evening. Recently becoming a stronghold for Terrorist Bats (undoubtedly trained in Al Qaeda camps), the first real offensive has been considered a victory for Rentacop forces.

After disturbances last weekend, and early Wednesday morning, recon forces were sent in to assess the situation.

"Upon entering the facility all was quiet," Mike Lovell said. "And after a recon of the upper levels was almost complete, all hell broke loose." Mike was commenting anonymously, as he isn't cleared as a spokesman for his particular not-to-be-named security company, NPI Security.

"Complacency almost got us killed. We were wrapping up the mission, and had let our guard down when it all happened. But we were determined to not let such an incident occur again."

Wednesday evening, more disturbances rocked the Hoyt Sherman place. In an effort to quell further terrorist activities and to keep unrest from spreading through the community, the Rentacop Special Strike Forces were dispatched to bring the situation under control.

"I wasn't able to be there for the operation," Lovell commented, still maintaining his anonymity. "I was scheduled for bed rest until midnight. I left it to my Operations commander and patrol leader to perform the snatch and grab, which eventually led to the death of the terrorist bat."

The following is the anonymous Lovell's expert take on the events of the operation, based on 2nd hand information from the participants:

Entry was made at the rear of the compound. After clearing the main level, Rentacop officers proceeded upstairs. In a location code named the "Mirror Room", the bat terrorist made his presence known. A mime-like firefight broke out, as the bat strafed the officers, and they swung flashlights and flailed arms at it, while ducking and dodging the repeated swoops.

The Rentacops retreated back downstairs to regroup. These were obviously high level Bat Terorrists, given their ability to strike fear almost instantly into such hardened Rentacops. Definitely not your run of the mill bats. Maneaters for sure. After a few moments, channeling Lovell's strategically superior mind (WWMD is always the question to ask yourself when in the fight of your life)while he slept, a plan was hatched.

Tablecloths were procured by each officer, and one by one, rooms that had been re-cleared were closed off. Soon the Rentacops found themselves staring pure hell-born terror in its beady little blind eyes in the last room. This would be the final battle to wrest control of Hoyt Sherman Place, helping to secure the secret rumors of Chicken Boy from possible internet notoriety.

With enhanced aerial sonar capabilities and a 10-12 inch wingspan, the Bat Terrorist attempted to navigate the room and confuse the strike force, but within moments found its technology foiled by the radar mixing surface of stealth tablecloths. One stealth tablecloth was deployed, taking the terrorist out of the air. The second one was deployed, creating a blanketing effect on the terrorist bat for easy capture. A ground fight ensued, and finally in perfect Rentacop fashion, Commander Cook laid down the rules with a well placed heal.

We're not saying that the terrorist died for his cause, and we're not saying he was or was not captured. Spokespersons at GITMO have refused all comment. The Obama Administration has also been eerily quiet on the matter. We're still further investigating this manner through other named anonymous sources, but have yet to confirm this story. As a quality news organization, we wanted to make sure you heard it here first. We'll sort the facts from the fiction later, as the story develops, most likely into a really big whopper of a tale.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Terrorist Acts By Bats!!!

As most of you know by now, I'm your average run of the mill rentacop. I drive around, mostly looking pretty, and check to make sure clients' businesses and homes are secure all night. One of my other duties is to respond to alarms at these places. I get the call, go to the alarm, make sure everything is good, or if a bad guy shows up, do something about call the actual cops. Real Hero stuff, and all for $9.50 per hour!!!

Well, the other day, I am walking around a client's house. She moved to another part of town, and left this house in a rather affluent neighborhood which is up for sale. We used to just drive into the driveway and that was it. One day the realtor left the front door open after a showing, and some kids decided to take advantage of the new party spot, henceforth we do full walk arounds every shift now. Anyways, I'm walking around this house, and as I check the front door, I notice something on the board trim above the door and underneath the overhang. I shine my flashlight up there to see what it is, and RIGHT FOR MY NOSE, this bat does some aerial ninja stuff off the ledge, scares the hell out of me, and after backing me off disappears into the trees. Okay, no big deal...

Then came last night. I am sent on a non-identifiable motion alarm to the Hoyt Sherman Foundation house. This place was built by a Civil War General way back when. There are stories, but only word of mouth (I checked for stories online, but came up with nothing), about it being considered possibly haunted-worthy. Mostly centered around a supposed illegitimate boy, affectionately named Chicken Boy, between General Sherman and his daughter. Anyways... this place has a theatre section (which I've attended functions at before) as well as the house, which included an art displaying addition. The place freaks me out, because it does indeed look as haunted worthy as almost any other place I've seen. It's big, with lots of rooms, lots of passageways from random spots in the building, and really friggin dark inside.

Well, my supervisor shows up and decides to escort me through the place. My manly macho attitude goes right out the window here, and more than welcomes the company. We check the outside, and verify that the theatre section is not in alarm. So we enter the house and check out rooms. The alarm pad says the mirror room is the point of alarm (why the security monitoring company can't figure this out is beyond me), but that helps about as much as the security monitor's ineptness. We find a door that leads up to a previously existing belltower. The tower was removed, and the roof resealed (albeit probably not all that well) at a lower level, but the door to it is still there. I open it up, and inside is a bat swooping around acting as a sentry. I quickly shut the door trapping the bat away from us. We check soem more rooms and are in the main upper hallway next to the stairwell, when it happens. A big freaking 747 divebombs us, swoops out and around and continues to make runs at our head. Apparently this was a training exercise and the airborne intruder is not armed to the hilt, otherwise we surely would have been strafed to our deaths.
This is one big friggin bat. I thought at first maybe Batman was real, but then realized Batman doesnt attack rentacops, and we hadn't activated the Bat Signal yet anyways. Then of course I thought that if Chicken Boy had truly disappeared, that this bat had been feasting on him to get that big. I mean seriously, the thing was THIS (stretching my hands out) big!

My supervisor, Casey, attempted to fend off the bat with his mag-lite. Yeah, that only pisses bats off apparently. You just don't antagonize a bat. That big bastard ended up chasing us downstairs and continuing the constant harrassment. Casey beat feet right past me and out into the kitchen, which is apparently out of bounds for the bat, which left me at the bottom of the staircase, crouched low, and stretching with everything I had to hit the lightswitch to the off position. I clicked the switch, and ran underneath the swooping bat into the kitchen myself. Apparently bored with us quitters, the bat disappeared up the stairwell and into the darkness. THANK GOD! We got permission from the keyholder to arm the perimeter, rather than chase down the bat and evict him just to set up the entire alarm system. Again..THANK GOD. That bat surely would've eaten us, or given us rabies.

I'm not so sure I signed up for this stuff, at least not without being allowed to carry around some anti-aircraft guns!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Guilt Wars: Revenge of the Men

The other day Jay Burns wrote of an experience he had involving an ATV rollover accident that injured his wife. After she realized that this was an unsuccessful assassination attempt, she quickly resorted to tactics straight out of the Women's Handbook For Embattled Marriages. As most of you are aware, all women have a complete education on how to be a lady, as well as how to handle her husband in all situations, and other odd know-hows. I'm pretty sure this all sprung up during the heated days of the Feminist Movement, but since they don't copyright these things, we can never truly be sure.

And of course, guys, we don't need a book to tell us how to handle things. We're naturally equipped with common sense with a little bit of random advice from those guys we call Dad and Grandpa. We're pretty sure some lady once overheard this advice being given out, wrote it down and commenced authoring the future counter-offensives to be used on our particular generation of men. But I digress...

As Jay writes in the final paragraph of his article:

However, not wanting a good crisis to go to waste my wife is getting some really good "guilt mileage" out of the incident. Examples include; waking in the middle of the night, then waking me, pointing at the barely scratched elbow, making a pout face, and saying oh so sweetly, "will YOU get me a drink of water, It hurts too bad to get up."

For us guys being the more logical and less emotional gender, women sure have a way of projecting guilt into our souls. I can't quite figure out how they do it, but they do it, and WELL!

Well, as any good Star Wars movie will tell you, even though one side wins in the first movie, the other side will come back with a vengeance. And this last Friday, it happened. The kids spent the week at my folks place, I was sleeping prior to my overnight work shift that starts at midnight. So, my wife decides this will be a great opportunity to go visit some friends of hers. I wake up at 11pm and find the house quiet. I also find a note saying where she went and that she will be back in time to feed me (like all good wives should do for their husbands) before I go to work. Okay, things are good, she'll be home any minute to make me supper. Earlier that morning she asked me what I wanted for supper, so I'm expecting some rice dish with some meat, as requested. Well 11:30 rolls around, and no wife. I give her a call, and she informs me that she is on her way home, and also inquires if I'm mad at her for being late. "Just a little bit." We hang up, and I continue getting dressed, sure that she will stop at a fast food joint and pick me up some supper for the road so that I might eat and still be to work on time. She arrives home, and *GASP* No food!!!!! She has a sad look on her face, and I have a very undisguised look of being pissed off on mine. I leave without much to say, and not hiding my irritation. Her last look is of total dejection, as I didn't even give her a goodnight kiss before leaving. Probably a no-no on my part, but I was mad and didn't care.

I come home the next morning from work, after stopping off to change the oil in the car, so we can go up to my folks to get the kids. On the way out of town we gas up, grab some drinks, and I had to rush into the gas station to make sure I was actually going to get something to eat. She had procured herself a sandwich, but I saw nothing on the counter for me. I grabbed a donut. From noon on Friday to 1030am on Saturday, all I was eating was a donut? Something is wrong here. We talk some more. She tells me how she didn't sleep well the night before. I asked as to the reason, which she didn't know. I suggested that maybe she was racked with guilt. She assented that guilt may have played a part in it.

Eventually I went ahead and forgave her. But I didn't hesitate to jab with it a bit from time to time. She said since I forgave her and she accepted it, there was no guilt. But oh, my dear, dear readers, there is still vestiges of guilt trailing behind in the subconscious. The next time she goes out with friends and I'm left sleeping, unknowing of her adventures, she will think about it and remember to make sure it doesn't happen again. Oh yes, the guilt will remain whether she admits/likes it or not!!!

So Jay, I dedicate this guilt wars victory in your honor. Love it, appreciate it, and most of all, don't tell your wife, otherwise we may be in for yet another sequel that doesn't work in our favor!