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Tuesday, December 15, 2009 11:05:54 PM
Mood: Spent
Christmas Decorations, Back to Flash

The Christmas lights are up at the Tocci house. Since it's our first holiday season in our house, we had to formulate a lighting plan.  We started with candles in the windows. Then we hung white icicle lights along the eaves of the front of the house. For a little extra flare we wrapped green lighted garland around the posts near the front door. xmas lightsI'm really pleased with the way it turned out. It wasn't difficult and now that we've done it once and figured it all out, next year will be a breeze.

The next order of business was a Christmas tree, which we attained lumberjack style at a local tree farm. xmas treeBasically you show up and they give you a wagon and saw and send you on your way. We found a beautiful Fraser fir and I took that mother down, tied it to the car's roof, and brought it home. It doesn't get much fresher than that. I love the smell of a pine tree at xmas time.

Photos on flickr.

I've been working on a new song lately about a certain social networking experience. I finished and had it ready for animating when a certain golfer had to go and take over the Yahoo Buzz with his 14 (and counting) mistresses. So I put the animation on hold to make a quick game which absolutely consumed me for the past week. I've delivered it to atom.com for publishing so it should be up soon.

Some fun to tide you over:

 

 

Wednesday, December 02, 2009 06:52:38 PM
Mood: Cheerful
Fire, Cat Food, Xmas Lights

fireNot unlike the Prodigy, I'm a fire starter. We lit our first fire in our fireplace the other day. It was just a duraflame log, but it counts. I can totally see this turning into a habit. In fact I've lit one every night since and today I picked up some legitimate wood. If it burns well I'll get a half of a cord from the same people.

The other day I had to find a new cat food for Leia (because she's been boycotting one of the brands we give her) and I couldn't believe the ingredients they were bragging about on the labels. Things like "made with real chicken and brown rice." or "only the finest ingredients like chicken, carrots, and cranberries" Now, obviously I can understand the chicken part, because cats love chicken. But WTF is up with the rice and veggies? Why would that be good for a carnivore? I for one have never seen a wild cat on the Discovery channel chomping away at a corn on the cob. Cheetahs do not stalk celery (see what I did with that?). And you can bet your ass that if a tiger makes his way into a rice paddy, he's probably looking for farmers. There's apparently an entire science behind pet food that I am completely ignorant about.

Tocci Ponders: After thousands of years of fur ball problems, why haven't cats evolved digestible hair?

We started decorating the house for xmas. So far we've just got candles in the windows, but we have some lighting plans. Photos to come...

Tocci Ponders: If Santa sees me when I'm sleeping, how come he's not considered a peeping tom? I guess the authorities look the other way. Makes sense. They look the other way for the breaking and entering too.

I'm so linkin' you can call me Abe:

Tuesday, November 03, 2009 12:34:56 PM
Mood: Chillin'
Two Months at a Glance

Well it's Election Day, and these political phone calls have been driving me f-ing crazy. Why they are excluded from the do-not-call list is beyond me. If I have to listen to another recording with some lame endorsement I might have to vote for the other guy on principle. The worst one was some recording that wanted my touchtone input. It said something about family values and then asked if I agree marriage should only be between one man and one woman. I pushed "2" for "no" (because I'm not a bigot or homophobe) and it said "thank you" and hung up. How about you keep your hateful, religion-fueled agenda off my phone line? Is that really too much to ask?

tombstones_tnAnyway I'm not really in that bad of a mood. We had a Halloween housewarming party on Saturday and had a blast. We decorated the house and the yard. I made some tombstone decorations for the front yard with some amusing epitaphs:

Funny Tombstone Epitaphs

  1. Monkey - Jumped on the bed. Broke his head.
  2. Pierce DeHart - Ran with scissors.
  3. Pepperoni & Sausage (from the Tombstone pizza commercial)
  4. Walter Skimmer - Pool boy. Died of SHOCK.
  5. I. M. Skewered - Sword Swallower. Overeater.
  6. Mark D. Newb - Pwned
  7. Justin Pieces - Fireworks maker. Went out with a BANG.
  8. Mario - Game Over

pirate_tnLots of people dressed up, so that was fun. I was a pirate, Jenny was a witch, my mom was a hippie, Eric 2.0 was Dracula, Chris and Amanda were a clothesline, James was Plaxico Burress, Jon Jon and Angela were Clark Kent and Lois Lane, Don was a chef, Catherine and Victoria were Cho Chang and a dragon respectively, and Lucas was Dash Incredible. We had tons of food and drink, a lot of which was provided by our awesome family and friends. I made a spooky rum punch in a plastic cauldron with a (sterilized) rubber hand floating in it. Ingredients:

Party Punch / Rum Punch

  • 3-liter bottle of ginger ale
  • 1 quart tub of orange sherbet
  • 1 46 fl. oz. can of pineapple juice
  • 1-1.5 liters of rum (I used bacardi)

It's been two months so other things have happened around here. Some highlights include:

  • We had a huge maple tree removed from our back yard. That's a crazy job! It was too close to the house, patio, and pool so it had to go.
  • Chris and Amanda had a nice engagement party down the shore.
  • We went to a corn maze for the first time.
  • We moved my mother, step-father, and sister to a new house.
  • We met Mark and Lauren's cute little baby Preston Lucas.
  • We installed a new chandelier for the dining room and bought a new recliner for the living room.

In professional news, the Kizash Network is no more. We decided to dissolve the parent company Intellidreams and divide up the assets. We had a good run for a while but in the end it was not worth maintaining. It was a good learning experience though.

Tocci Ponders: What's with dollar stores charging more than a dollar for things these days? By that logic, every store is a dollar store as long as at least one item in the store costs a dollar.

Tomorrow is my birthday and I'll be 34 years... aged. I won't say "old" because 34 is not really old. But I'm not going to say "years young" either because I'm not quite that lame. Time really flies when looking back on it.

Tocci Ponders: Why do the Miranda rights say that "anything you say can and will be used against you"? That's putting a lot of pressure on the prosecution. What if it's not useful? What if the guy being arrested says, "I like purple". Can that really be used against him?

Well this blog entry has been all over the place, but I guess it's to be expected when you cram two months into a few paragraphs. It's time to end this nonsense with a link list.

 

Wednesday, September 02, 2009 11:40:49 AM
Mood: Content
Just an update...

Things at the Tocci house are going well. We're still painting and unpacking, but little by little it's all getting done. A month or so ago we had another water issue in our basement - this time because the drain pipe for the condensation from the AC unit was clogged. I ran a new one with PVC, which as it turns out is like playing with gigantic set of toy building straws or tinkertoys. I also got some water alarms so we'll know right away if something else leaks (not sure what else could leak at this point). 3858647896_a10a790abd_t My garden produced a ton of cucumbers, zucchini, tomatoes, and we're just now getting eggplants. The tomato shown here was particularly interesting. I call it the horny tomato... because of the horn... sorta...

Random Thought: Costco and these other wholesale places are interesting. They always have food samples, but if you like the food your only option is to buy the quantities they sell. It's like, "Hey, do you like that french fry? Good! Here's a 20 pound bag of 'em."

We've really gotten a lot of use out of our pool - more than I had thought. We had a few mini pool parties and I taught Jenny to dive. It's so refreshing to jump in when it's 90 degrees and humid. This week it's a bit cold though. It's going to be a sad day when we have to cover it for the winter.

Tocci Ponders: If fat people swim naked, is it still skinny dipping?

I took a test for the first time in like 10 years last month. It was the NJ Boater's Safety exam which is now required of all boaters who use any kind of motor.  Since my fishing boat has a trolling motor, I was included. Apparently I've still got it though, because as we used to say in college, "I pissed on it". That means I did really well. I think I got two wrong and those questions were about feuling a boat and fire extinguishers on a huge vessel - things that have nothing to do with the kind of boating I do anyway.

Random Thought: Headbands are not cool. Jimi Hendrix is cool. Jimi Hendrix wears a headband, and yet he is still cool. Ergo, Jimi Hendrix is cooler than headbands are uncool.

3880826179_b350bf918e_tThe other day I was pulling weeds in my backyard and I discovered some mysterious eggs behind one of our border trees. They look like chicken eggs but there are obviously no chickens around here. They're on the ground, half buried, so I don't think they're from a bird. I'm guessing they're from a snake? Maybe a platypus? WTF?

The link list strikes back:

Thursday, July 16, 2009 12:53:43 PM
Mood: Happy
Arnold's Budget Warfare

arnoldsbudgetwarfareAnytime you've got a character like Arnold Schwarzenegger for a governor, games practically make themselves. The state of California is going through a budget crisis and has been issuing IOUs for payment. In Arnold's Budget Warfare, the Governator takes aim at the never ending stream of bills and invoices with his modified 1887 Winchester shotgun and deadly IOU grenades (space bar). Destroy all of the invoices before they get past arnold or they'll deplete the remaining budget and send California into bankruptcy. My high score so far is 100,400, but I pretty much suck. Oh, and here's something not mentioned in the game: once you hit 100 invoices you get an extra IOU grenade! Have fun!