Monday, July 31, 2006

Hoy es lunes 

Which means that the weekend is over and that I am at work now, toiling away with the rest of you working stiffs. Well, maybe I'm not toiling away just yet, but I'm drinking my coffee. That's a start.

For those of you stuck in the heat wave striking a lot of the country-ha! It's nice here. 60 degrees for the ride to work and a high of 80 projected for today. Not too shabby.

Although the heat would have come in handy over the weekend. I went camping! And hiking! Finally! It was great. But due to the lack of heat, no swimming transpired. Sad, but there will be other times.

Yes, camping! Ah! I'd forgotten how cleansing you are! Campfires, stars (until the clouds roll in), good conversation and new friends, scary stories leaving poor Liz unable to wander into the bush to pee....good times. I'll post a picture later. I don't have it here.

That was Saturday to Sunday. Friday night I was supposed to go to a potluck, but due to circumstances beyond my control I arrived home too late to go. I met up with a guy from work at the Rogue Brewery for happy hour and didn't get home until...after happy hour. Oops.

Still not awake. I'm working on my vow to return to witticisms and something coherent and worth reading on here. Let me get some more coffee and see what I can come up with...

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Friday, July 28, 2006

GOP makes conditions on wage increase - Yahoo! News 

GOP makes conditions on wage increase - Yahoo! News

Let's make these lawmakers live on minimum wage for a year, and then see if they continue resisting raising it.

I can't see the sense in tying a raise in minimum wage with a reduction in taxes on inheritances on multimllion dollar estates. How does that make sense?

Republican leaders are willing to allow the first minimum wage increase in a decade but only if it's coupled with a cut in inheritance taxes on multimillion-dollar estates, lawmakers said Friday.


"It's political blackmail to say the only way that minimum wage workers can get a raise is to give a tax giveaway to the wealthiest Americans," said Sen. Edward Kennedy (
news, bio, voting record), D-Mass. "Members of Congress raised their own pay — no strings attached. Surely, common decency suggests that minimum wage workers deserve the same respect."


Here comes my favorite part of the article. Doesn't hypocrisy warm the heart?

It was a decade ago, during the campaign year of 1996, that Congress last voted to increase the minimum wage. A person working 40 hours per week at minimum wage makes $10,700, which is below the poverty line for workers with families.


Inflation has eroded the minimum wage's buying power to the lowest level in about 50 years. Lawmakers have won cost-of-living wage increases totaling about $35,000 for themselves over that time.

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One more reason to love Vegas 

Las Vegas has made it illegal to feed homeless people in city parks after residents complained about the large numbers gathering in the public facilities.

Public facilities


The law defines a homeless person as someone "whom a reasonable ordinary person would believe to be entitled to apply for or receive assistance".

Allen Lichtenstein, a lawyer with the American civil liberties union of Nevada, said the language makes the law unenforceable.

He said: "The ordinance is clearly unconstitutional and nonsensical.

"How are you going to know without a financial statement who's poor and who's not poor?

"It means they can discriminate based on the way people look."

Ahh! Love for our fellow man! Don't you love the compassion that permeates the air?

The news is filled with such wonderful things!

I should look a bit more into this story, but I don't have the guts for it today.

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A tip 

Sustainability Tip

Ban the Incandescent

“If every household in the US replaced just three of its incandescent light bulbs with energy-saving designs and used them for five hours per day, it would reduce emissions of carbon dioxide by 23 million tonnes, reduce electricity demand by the equivalent of 11 coal-fired power stations and save $1.8 billion.

Given that investing $450 million could save $1.8 billion, it is hard to understand why anyone would still choose incandescent bulbs.”

From Light bulbs: Not such a bright idea (BBC News)

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Thursday, July 27, 2006

Portland amuses me 

Tonight's event was a mural opening/pot luck. A couple friends were instrumental in planning, designing etc etc a mural whose theme is "Share the Road". It's a large mural on the side of an auto repair shop on a major road. A great work of art, and a great message (stop running people over! The road isn't just for cars! Nor is it just for bikers...). There was a laptop showing a slide show of the work as it progressed, food, live music, bicycle awareness handouts, the whole shebang.

As the site is on a major street, there are many passersby. Including the jamaican talking dude who was mucky muck on something. The entire hour or so he was there, he was shouting. To no one in particular, but to everyone (it's nice when people are totally inclusive, no?). About the pretty painting, how his name is JoJo, does anyone want a picture with JoJo, etc. His shouting continued (with brief pauses) as those involved in the project spoke a bit.

He was obnoxious, to be sure.

The best part? He was ignored, and only barely humored by a few. To the rest he was just one of the passing crazies.

Another day in SE Portland! I love it!

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Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Pick me up 

Tired, that is me today. One day I should try going to bed earlier. Got to reading, then studying, then more reading (Cancer Ward is getting better as it goes on. And since it's so damn hot lately, it's nice to read about frigid places) and by 2 I got in bed and almost got up right away to continue the reading. Instead, I stayed in place and eventually passed into unconsciousness (I skipped the ramen as well)

Bottom line, not awake today. I am sure staring at spreadsheets all day will wake me up eventually, but for now I have coffee and...Billy Ocean trying to bully someone into getting out of his dreams and into his car. Of course this brings back memories of the movie "License to Drive" and the Corey-duo. Good times.

Could be a long day. Tonight is a "Share-the-Road" mural opening (some friends painted one) and potluck. Aw, hell. And after I'm supposed to meet up for drinks. Another darn birthday! And the bike comes home from the doc today. That will be nice. I miss Seymour!

BRS-you suck

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Monday, July 24, 2006

Pot luck bonanza 

Tonight was potluck number 1 of the week. How many will there be? Four
Right now I have lunch booked through Thursday (not lunch dates, but talks or meetings or what-have-yous). I have somewhere to be every night this week.
Fortunately, I finished my homework for the week after work today
City and Colour (spelled the 'english' (not 'american' way) way of course) is great stuff
Reminisced tonight with my buddy about how the girls we paddled through Laos with thought we were gay and a couple. Funny. We would look cute together, it's true

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Alliteration is awesome 

V for Vendetta
Saw that flick last night. Did I like it? Yes. A couple of things threw me off (not plot twists, but more like construction detours from good movie to not so good), but overall I liked it
Natalie Portman? Very attractive
Natalie Portman with a British accent? Hoo boy
Some good messages in the movie
With perhaps the following exceptions:
You tortured me for weeks, but now I love you and will kiss your mask (ewww)
The govt is bad, but I use that as an excuse to exact revenge (no!!) while falling in love with the girl I kidnapped and now torture before falling asleep.
Inexpensive good beer with cheap movies? Awesome idea

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Sunday, July 23, 2006

Not only that.... 

some dude in a store (I forget where/what) kinda razzed on me for wearing a Jager hat (to say nothing of the condition it finds itself in)!

I am feeling quite refined and cultured these days...

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A close call or an open door? 

Last Friday at noon, the finals were held for our inter-office pool tournament. People gathered on the 4th floor to eat some free food and drink some free soda while the last two guys in the tournament duked it out for the largest of the small trophies. Cool stuff, really. A nice way to meet more people in the company, not to mention an excuse to muck around for an hour.

While standing there watching the game, soda in one hand and some grapes and corn chips in the other, I looked at the man standing next to me on my left. He was an older guy and it only took me a second to realize who it was. It was our company's founder and namesake! Cool that he showed up and I toyed with introducing myself to him (he's a nice friendly very involved man) but held back for two reasons.

1. To me it would have seemed a suck-up maneuver. "Hi there, Dave. I'm Corey. Hell of a pool tournament your wonderful company puts on. Good spread to. Are there any company policies against leaving here with my pockets full of food? Haha! Just kidding! No, really....."

2. My attire. Perhaps I'm coming loose at the hinges (tho the guy on my right was wearing flip-flops), but I am getting closer and closer to not caring. Not really, anyway. On this given day I was wearing jeans and a black concert t-shirt. Alexisonfire-there's a coffin at the bottom and some amoeba/spermy looking ghouls rising up out of it. This shirt also does nothing to hide the tattoo on my left arm (Dave's side). Fortunately my jeans were clean(ish) and my shoes not too tattered. My hair had been brushed at some point in the week prior and I only had a couple/few days of stubble.

Suffice it to say, I was not looking what some would say was my best.

We didn't meet. But that day will come. Oh yes, it will come.

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I'll be damned 

Up until about 40 minutes ago (pacific time), it was my 30 and a halfth birthday. I only noticed it because it was a buddy's birthday and.....I don't know why I thought of it. It got my a hug tho, and lots of jeering. So it goes

It's hot. I am sweating

Piping hot ramen does not stop the sweating

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Thursday, July 20, 2006

My arms are so tired I can't lift them 

Perhaps they are not quite that heavy; I felt like paraphrasing Anchorman, that's all. They are tired. Finally we got us a heavier duty paddling practice. Instead of stopping every 10 minutes (which I must admit, can be quite nice) we pretty much paddled constantly for the entire hour. Typically, our practices consist of eased back paddling and stretches of hard paddling (kinda like fart-leks. Whoever coined that term was a genius. I'm pretty sure I spelled it wrong, but I don't care). I've taken to asking for more hard paddling when it's called out.


Coach: "Ok, let's do 40 hard paddles" or "Ok, 1 minute 30 seconds all out"

Me: "Why don't we make it 80!" or "Let's do 3 minutes!"

Coach: "All right!"

The rest of the boat: Assorted murmers, shouts to throw me overboard, lots of bitching and whining.

The girl behind me pointed out to the boat that "I'm not competetive! I do yoga!" Which is fine, but when she's slacking on the boat (as she is wont to do) the rest of us make up for it. Don't worry, I splashed her. "Accidentally", of course.

It's getting on to be time to study. Maybe some ramen first...

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When a cute kitty is no longer cute 

The cute kitty begins to lose his cuteness early in the AM when sleep is being reattempted against all odds (alarm clock, work, headache I blame on dirty taps, no bike to ride to work...) and he randomly attacks various sheet/blanket (we haven't gotten the heat wave here yet) covered body parts.

When the attacks become focused on the crotch, all cuteness is gone and crazy Marvin gets tumbled to the floor.

And I give up on sleep. Blast!

Despite the fatigue, I've not strayed beyond 2 cups of cafe today. Not yet anyway.

Last night was productive. Took a mid-term, learned some new spanish twists, took a nap and make it to the Horse Brass to quaff a couple for a buddy's birthday.

During the quaffing, I learned that one of the girls celebrating with us is heading to Breckenridge this year to teach skiing. Despite my best efforts to change her mind, she still plans on going. Not that I was trying to talk her out of CO, not at all. Only out of Breck. Pisser. She said she'd always wanted to be a ski bum for a season or more. I just want to ski again!!

Plans are being hatched to rent out a condo for part of ski season. Let the zanity start!

Something slipped a bit...but caught again. Perhaps if I jar my head it'll let loose?

Might be starting a fund raiser soon. I'll keep you posted.

Sizzle-fess up you rotten bastard!!!

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What a guy 

Dubya spoke to the NAACP.

"I come from a family committed to civil rights," Bush said. "My faith tells me that we are all children of God — equally loved, equally cherished, equally entitled to the rights He grants us all."

That is such a nice sentiment and I'm glad he feels that way and that his faith preaches this equality! Everyone is equal.

Unless of course, you're gay....

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Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Mas actividades 

Today was a day of firsts: My first day getting to work (at this job, anyway) by 8am. The first day since August of 2004 that I worked 8 hours! In fact, I worked almost 8 and a half hours! Pretty crazy. It wasn't too tough, since I had work to do. And will have plenty of work to do for a while to come. Not a bad thing, as long as it doesn't get excessive. This 8-hour day thing won't become a habit.

After dragon boating, I met up with a couple paddlers and their friends at a bar most of whose beer, if not all of their beer, is organic. Nicely rad. Cheap too-$2.50 royal pints during happy hour (which apparently it still was at almost 8pm). My friend and I got into an actual scuffle at the bar when the beer was ordered, as I wanted to pay and so did she. Our bags ended up pkerfluffle all over the floor and my wallet skittered into a far corner, signifying my defeat. Very sad.

In another first (first in a long time, anyway), me and A were playing games in the street. He had his frisbee handy and we tossed it around a while in the middle of a not-so-minro street. Not that it was busy; an occasional bus or van or Mercedes SUV (from whom we got a nasty look. Shoulda let the frisbee hit her) passed by. The only real danger we had was in me missing an errant toss from A, resulting in a digned up Mercedes sedan. Didn't happen, of course, because I can be speedy when I want to be. Not speedy enough to keep the disc from busting thru one of the outdoor tables. Ah well. No one cared.

Back home, the psycho-Kitty greeted me at the door and has been under my feet, attacking my feet or attacking wayward papers, doors and spiders all night. Makes it hard to get anything done when your feet are getting pawed at! Despite this hardship, I still managed to eat my ramen. Good times. Right now he's peering at me from the shelves next to the bed (where he starts his night). I'm waiting for him to attack my laptop. In a few I'll grab him and go to sleep.

But first....

El baile es en la universidad?

To counteract the Russian novel I decided to read during these beautiful sunny summer days (Cancer Ward, of all books. Yes, it is about a Cancer Ward, in the USSR (based on the author's experiences in a CW in Uzbekistan). No, it is not cheery at all.) I'm grabbing up the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy for a little fun. Can't overwork the seriousness of things, right?

No famous people for me today. Only my ratty ass harassing my co-workers. See? I can still go sleepless and survive!

O'Doyle rules!

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Tuesday, July 18, 2006

My day in the life of a Rock Star 

What connections I seem to be finding in life! This past weekend, I once again used my little brother (this time it in no way involved calling his gullible butt over to the wall, again, so that I could spit onto his face from the upper bunk). He has become my music connection (add me to the masses asking him for favors, free passes, groupies, etc) and he didn't fail me (tho he tried).

Warped Tour passed thru Portland this past Sunday (false advertising, in my opinion, as the wide open field that hosted the tour was an hour's drive away from Portland) and I drove up to see my brother in action.

The drive was nice. For all but the last mile there was very little traffic. I had my bag of pretzels, a bag of raisins, juice and the trusty iPod. Before I knew it, the Gold Saturn was directed across the field (offroading!) to a parking spot right in front of the entry gate. So far so good.

Finding the line for "People on a List" was easy. It was the only one with no one in it. Striding confidently to the table I tossed out my license and said I was on XX's list (I am having inner monologue discussions as to whether to name drop or to keep the innocents out of this....). A guy behind me said: "Hey, you're not related to 'this kid' (my brother), are you?" I nodded affirmatively, at which he laughed. And punched some random 6-year old in the side of the head. I shook his hand as he laughed at meeting "another one of them". My brother is famous in his own way, ya know? Cool guy, said he'd make finding Bro his top priority when I was told I was not on any list. Before the Kid Puncher could make good on his promise, my text got thru and here comes Little Bro, dressed in flannel and a toque (it was around 90 degrees) and all black out the gate looking ready to kill. A quick turnaround to cuss out some incompetent (or so he said. Perhaps he was mucking with me?) and return with an ALL ACCESS PASS. SO it began. My foray into the world of the rock star.

It began immediately. Like a little lab puppy, I followed LB across the field, through throngs of 11-17 year olds (I think I was closer in age to some of the parents who brought their kids. For certain I had more in common with them) and through a back gate into the world of the famous. As we careened through the aisles and aisles of tour busses I started noticing faces..."hey, that's so-and-so and that's...no wAY!" Star struck, I had to grab LB's shirt to stay on track. As we passed by celeb after celeb, calls rang out in greeting to the LB. Everyone seemed to want to talk to him, especially a lot of the women that had special passes. We stopped to chat to a couple of people (again, I'll refrain from name dropping. But let me tell ya, these were not newcomers) more than happy to meet me, only because of my brother.

We reached the tour bus. Never in my life have I ever traveled in such luxury, or even been in a mode of transport so nice! Huge tvs, dvd players, fridge, I think there may have been a hot tub in the back, I'm not sure. Even I could not go there. The guys in the band were very nice. They're Canadian, so they talked funny. Not only that, but they had the AC cranked high enough so that they could walk around in their parkas and feel at home. Odd, but they're rock stars. They can do that. For most of the afternoon we sat there and chatted, and I heard all sorts of On the Road type stories. Man, the life these guys live! Bachanaal (sp?) all the time!

In between stories, we'd go out and check out other bands, hang out with some of the other bands, and all I heard was "your brother's great" this and that and "if only he would tour with us". Sickening, really.

Did I mention the butler?

When dinner rolled around we weaseled my way in so that I could eat with the stars (I paid $10). Overall it was pretty cool, and I only committed one gaffe. Sitting there, I noticed a couple of girls looking at our table, giggling and carrying on. I was feeling sexy, despite my sweat soaked shirt, so I got up and walked over to talk with them. Turns out, it wasn't me they were pointing at, but the famous rock stars I was eating with. Oops. They all had a good laugh at my expense, and were nice enough to throw a couple groupies at me later (which I turned down. I had to get home and study my accounting) to assuage my feelings of idiocy.

Watching the Kid work was pretty awesome. He's really good at what he does, and is kind of entertaining to watch. Not as entertaining to see him grousing all day about a little sunburn (he's been living vampire's hours for years now, and his skin hasn't seen the sun in literally years. You want to talk pale...blinding.

I'd write more, but the kitty is alternating between clawing my leg, chewing my fingers, chewing the power cord and trying to drink my beer. Not only that, but it's getting late and I have to be at work a little before 8, a feat I am not sure I've succeeded in yet.

Bottom line:
Lots of famous people
The Little Brother has MADE IT (I think the hot chick from the Girl Nexts Door called him when I was there)
Don't ask the lead singer of the Punkest of the Punk to sign your ex-boob. And don't tell him that he is not as Fat as you expected from his name, thinking it will make him happy
Groupies are not toys
Rock stars live the life

The cat is chewing on my scalp. Jealous of the ramen, says I

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Monday, July 17, 2006

I turned 30 months ago... 

And this was the day of. Me and my temporary Scottish girlfriends and our new local friends!

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I'm not dead, just Weak Sauce 

Time for another new leaf to be overturned. I've been declared legally dead thanks to my neglect of this my sacred blog, riots over my silence have desecrated sacred sites and shut down cities, and my brain has atrophied. Not because of blog-lessness. Just because.

Time to return to the fold. Since nothing exciting seems to happen anymore (to me. Sort of) I've delayed boring the world with my lunatic ravings. Well, enough of that hogwash. Let's get this going again

First, I'll post a picture taken on my 30th bday. Yes, some do exist and I finally got a copy of one! Also, I spent Sunday hanging out with my rock star Little Brother and his cavalcade of famous friends. Those stories need retelling. It was a day that wore me out for quite a while. I tell ya-what a lifestyle they lead!

These fun things will come. However, the oven just beeped indicating its readiness for use. My tater tots will soon be cooked!

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Monday, July 03, 2006

More good news 

Judges for Cambodia's long-awaited Khmer Rouge genocide trials have been sworn in, a key step towards bringing former leaders to justice.

This is very good news. The BBCnews article is here

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US image abroad 

US seen as a bigger threat to peace than Iran, worldwide poll suggests

Findings also show fall in support for war on terror
Decline in America's image 'all to do with Iraq'
Ewen MacAskill, diplomatic editor
Thursday June 15, 2006
The Guardian http://www.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,,1797677,00.html

George Bush's six years in office have so damaged the image of the US that
people worldwide see Washington as a bigger threat to world peace than Tehran,
according to a global poll.

The Washington-based Pew Research Centre, in a poll of 17,000 people in 15
countries between March and May, found more people concerned about the US
presence in Iraq than about Iran's alleged nuclear weapons ambitions.
The Pew Centre said: "Despite growing concern over Iran's nuclear ambitions,
the US presence in Iraq is cited at least as often as Iran - and in many
countries much more often - as a danger to world peace."

The survey, carried out annually, shows a continued decline in support for the
US since 1999. The US image for most of the 20th century has been relatively
positive, being regularly identified with democracy, human rights and openness
in spite of criticism from the left, which reached a height during the Vietnam
war, and a residual suspicion in the Muslim world.

But even in the UK, Washington's closest ally, favourable ratings have slumped
from 83% in 1999 to 56% this year. The pattern is similar in France, down from
62% to 39%, Germany 78% to 37%, and Spain 50% to 23%.

In Muslim countries with which the US has traditionally enjoyed a good
relationship, such as Turkey - a member of Nato - and Indonesia, there have
also been slumps. In Indonesia favourable ratings for the US have dropped from
75% to 30%, and in Turkey from 52% to 12%.

"It's all [because of] Iraq," Carroll Doherty, associate director of the Pew
Centre, said. He added that it was a sign of how "dangerous Iraq is to the US
image" that, in spite of common cause between the US and Europeans on Iran,
there had been no improvement in the American position in Europe.
Mr Doherty said: "Short-term measures do have an effect. The outpouring of US
tsunami aid helped in Indonesia and India but that faded quickly, and now we
see US aid for Pakistan earthquake victims only helping at the margins."

Favourable ratings of the US in India dropped over the year from 71% to 56%.
He said US domestic polling indicated that Americans were well aware of how the
country was perceived abroad. The US image has become a political issue, with
Republicans saying it doesn't matter as long as the correct policies are being
pursued overseas, while Democrats argue that repairing the country's image and
relationships will be a priority for the next president in 2009.

The poll provides little comfort for Condoleezza Rice, who has worked hard at
improving relations with Europe since becoming Secretary of State last year.
As part of the overall decline in US support, the survey also records a drop in
support for the US-led "war on terror", even in countries such as Spain, in
spite of the Madrid bombings two years ago by al-Qaida that left 192 dead.
Support for the "war on terror" dropped in Spain from 26% last year to 19% this

Throughout the period the poll was conducted the crisis over Iran's nuclear
programme, intensified by hardline comments from its president, Mahmoud
Ahmadinejad, was repeatedly in the news. Iraq, too, has been in the news on an
almost daily basis, with the formation of a new Iraqi government being
accompanied by fears of a civil war.

Only in the US and Germany is Iran seen as a greater danger than the US in
Iraq. Public opinion in 12 of the other countries - Britain, France, Spain,
Russia, Indonesia, Egypt, Jordan, Turkey, Pakistan, Nigeria, India and China -
cite the US presence in Iraq as being the greater danger. Opinion in Japan was
evenly divided.

As well as Iraq and Iran, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is also high on the
list of issues that present a danger to world peace. Public opinion in about a
third of the countries polled put it at the top of their list of threats.

In the UK, the second biggest contributor of troops in Iraq, 60% said the Iraq
war had made the world more dangerous. Only 30% said it had made the world
safer, and 41% of British people said the US presence in Iraq represented a
great danger to world peace, with 34% citing Iran as a big threat.

By contrast, concern about Iran has almost doubled in the US over the past two
years. Some 46% of Americans view Mr Ahmadinejad's government as "a great
danger" to stability in the Middle East and world peace, up from 26% in 2003.
The concern in the US is shared in Germany, where 51% see Iran as a great
danger to world peace, against 18% three years ago.

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Let me introduce to you... 


He was rescued from the humane society, and now calls 3416 SE home! Very exciting. He really is the cutes kitty ever. Not that I am biased or anything...

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Name: Corey
Location: Portland, Oregon, United States

I'm on a journey with no destination. The path is constantly changing direction but there are always adventures to be had. "Never" and "always" have left my lexicon.

WWW http:/www.jimspeak.blogspot.com