Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Contrary to popular belief, I AM NOT GAY!


Over the years, on occasion, I have been thought to be gay. I am not gay.  I like women. I like em a lot! Any woman that has been in the same room with me and alcohol can attest to this. But for some reason, I have still been mistaken for one of the gays.

I guess I should start by saying that I don't think there's anything wrong with being gay. I think it's great! Have at it I say! It's just not my bag. Someone else in my family got the gay genes (Jordache, if I'm not mistaken) hell, he probably has a healthier relationship than I've ever had (and it's lasted longer too.) I, however, am a 100% heterosexual, woman lovin' man, man.

My last girlfriend called me her "big gay boyfriend, the girl in the cube next to me refers to me as her "gay coworker" to her friends.

Seriously now...

Okay, so I probably have a bit more of a feminine side than a lot of guys. I'm emotional, I like Air Supply, Kelly Clarkson and Adam Lambert, I cry when I watch Extreme Home Makeover (let's face it, who doesn't?) and I sometimes mimic a thoooper gay lisp, but that doesn't make me gay, it makes me fun!

Right? I got to thinking about why the hell people may think I'm gay and will now explain it all away. (Don't even try to play the denial card either, or I'll get really pissy!)

Gay facto #1 -  There is no hair on my body.

De Facto - I shave my head because I started going bald at the age of 25 and it's better to be "bald" than "balding." I shave my arms because I don't want hair covering up my tattoos. I shave my chest because *most* women don't like hairy chests and my legs because I'm a cyclist and my legs are fabulous! Also, leg massages feel much better when there is no hair involved (I am now taking applications for a part time leg masseuse by the way)
AND ANOTHER THING! There are few things more amazing than sliding into a freshly made bed with freshly shaven legs (srsly, try it some time)

Gay facto #2 -  I pluck my eyebrows.

De Facto - I pluck them to remove those crazy ass long ones that pop up out of nowhere. I don't actually SHAPE them! Have you ever seen that crazy guy in that infomercial for the juicer? I do NOT want to be that guy.

Gat facto #3 - I wear Women's Speed Stick..

De facto - Fine, it's a ladies product, but you know what? It smells good and it keeps me dry. Remember that famous line "Strong enough for a man but made for a woman?" Hello!
And really, who the hell wants to smell like English Leather, Brut or Old Spice? I can't believe they even make that crap anymore. Don't even get me started on that rank ass Axe body spray. I'd rather be hit with an ax than wear that putrid bug spray.

Gat facto #4 - I wear girly lotions.

De facto - I wear women's lotions because they SMELL GOOD! Again, why on earth would you want to smell like a piece of English leather or an old spice when you can smell like coconut lime verbena or blueberry muffins? There's something to be said for the quality of ladies' skin care products. I have softer skin at 40 than most 20 year old's. There's not even an argument for this one as far as I'm concerned.

Gay facto #5 - I ride a pink road bike

De facto - Um...okay, so I can't really explain that one.

Gay facto #6 I ride a pink mountain bike.

De facto - Shit...

Gay facto #7 I like to decorate my home and am pretty good at it.

De facto - Hey, who doesn't want to have a cute house? I like coming up with ideas that I think are going to look neat and it gives my house a personal look. So what if I made a special trip to IKEA just to find curtains to match my couches?


This isn't quite turning out the way I planned...

I'm not gay.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

"I am not a dog person!"

"I am not a dog person!"

That's what I kept saying to my then fiancee Amy. She pestered me for months to get a dog and I can honestly say, I didn't want one. It would be too much work, to expensive, we'd have to worry about dog sitters when we traveled, yadda yadda. I could rattle off another hundred reasons why I didn't want a dog.
But alas, I finally gave in to her nagging (like any smart man knows he must do) and agreed that once we got married we could get a dog.

So after we were married, Amy tells me she saw an ad on CraigsList from a lady that was looking to re-home her nine year old Corgi (which I'd never heard of before) . She was a doctor and had come to a point in her career that she just couldn't give him the attention he deserved.

We set up an time for her to bring over this "Corgi" so they could meet us and see if we could provide a good home for him.
The minute I saw Dewey jump out of the back of their car and run up to our front door, I knew we had found a new family member and I believe HE knew he had found a new home.

I can honestly say I don't even remember any kind of a transition period after we got him. He just fit right in. He slept right next to the bed, followed me around like we had been best friends for years.
He knew as well as we did that this home is where he belonged.

If you never got a chance to meet Dewey, he rarely stopped smiling. That fat bastard's energy level was through the roof and, up until three months ago, people rarely believed he was so old. It's hard to explain. He was so puppy like, but when you really looked at him, he seemed like an old soul. Like there was a lot more behind those brown eyes than just a dumb dog.

He was a dork. He was clumsy. He was stubborn as all get out. He was adorable. He was noble.

He was my best friend and he saw me through a lot of hard times. I can't imagine how I could have dealt with the past two years without him by my side, always eager to go for a walk or let me pull him around in the baby trailer with my bike or just lay next to me and look at me with that kind of love only a dog can give.

Yesterday I called in sick to work (something I don't typically do). I was feeling a little under the weather and figured I needed some rest or something. I could have gone in and slogged through the day, but I didn't. I stayed home and did nothing. I hung out with Dewey and Tex and we had a great day, full of doing nothing but enjoying each others company, playing in the backyard and napping.

Funny how things work out. 

He had a seizure this morning at 5am.

I rushed him to the emergency vet and after looking him over, the vet said the could run tests etc that would be at least $1500 to start. And then, who knows if that would even help.
So I did the hardest thing I've ever had to do. I checked the box on the form refusing treatment and agreeing to euthanasia.

I stroked his face and rubbed his ears just how he liked as the doctor put him to sleep and I cried like I've never cried before.The doctor was so wonderful and knew to say all the right things. As I sat next to the grave I dug for him, I took off the lid to the box the vet had put him in, not knowing what to expect, but knowing that I had to see him one more time. They had wrapped him in a cute blanket and he looked like he was sleeping.
I put his favorite squeaky next to him and I sat there and petted his face sobbing uncontrollably. Tex was sitting next to me and let out a little whimper.

My house is quieter today and there is only the pitter patter of one set of paws on the hardwood, rather than two.Tex will take care of me, and for that I'm thankful.

I guess I am a dog person after all.

Goodbye buddy.

As I try to write this, I can barely see the screen through my unstoppable tears.

I don't even know what to say. You changed my life in so many ways and taught me the true meaning of unconditional love, and for that I will always be thankful. I wish I could write more, but I just can't. At least not now.

I love you so much and I'll miss you more than I can ever say.

RIP Dewey     3/30/1997 - 6/29/2010

Friday, June 25, 2010


So I've decided rather than get up, have coffee, give myself a chance to wake up and then get ready to run, I'll set my shoes and shorts and heart rate monitor next to the bed and before my feet even hit the floor, I'll put them on.
It's so easy to just say "screw it" and blow off a run. To say "I'll do it tomorrow." Anyone who's ever been on any kind of a training schedule knows this, I mean hell, it's 5:00 in the morning for Christ's sake! I should be sleeping. But having to actually take off my running shoes and blow off my run is more than just procrastination, it's a slap in face to the commitment I've made.
So I'll put on my shoes, head out the door and struggle through that first mile, which is always a bitch, no matter how fit I am, and I'll do my run, knowing that in a few minutes I'll be glad I did.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Only Thing Better Than Pizza? Grilled Pizza!

While trying to think of something to make for our weekly dinner date, I remembered one of my Facebook friends posting a picture of a grilled pizza he made and since I love pizza and I love grilling, I thought "This is something that must happen in my house."
So I did a little research on the intarwebs and learned that not only is it easy to do, but is supposedly quite delicious.
Natalie made the dough earlier in the day, so we started by making the crusts. I don't have a rolling pin, so we shaped them by hand (ok, Natalie did)
Nat is quite the pizza tosser. If pizza dough tossing was a Special Olympics sport, she would get the "Participant" ribbon.

Next step is to toss the dough on the grill for a couple minutes on each side to stiffen it up a bit. As you can see by the lack of roundness, Nat's dough tossing skills need a little bit of work. But hey, round pizzas are for pussies.

Here are some of the ingredients we decided to go with. Since Nat is a vegetarian, we chose fresh vegetables.. Red/yellow/orange mini peppers, spinach, mushrooms, onions, asparagus and Fuji apple slices. I also made come carmelized onions for the pizza I wanted to make with the apples.

Next step: Slap your sauce (I made a creamy garlic sauce and a simple tomato sauce) your cheese and toppings on your dough, toss it on the grill and wait about 15 minutes.

And here's the finished product. I swear, this was some of the best pizza I've ever had. The spinach, mushroom and asparagus was definitely the winning combination The crust was nice and crispy on the bottom yet still a bit chewy and unlike any "fast food" pizza I've ever had, each and every single bite was screaming with flavor.
Round Table can suck it!

Next time you're thinking about ordering out, think again. Invite some friends over and take the time to make your own and GRILL EM! You won't be disappointed!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Oh Glory be! It's Dinner Time!

Any of you that know me, or have seen my midsection that is sometimes mistaken for one of those yoga balls you do crunches on (insert double entendre here), know that I like to eat. No, I LOVE to eat.
I also love to cook! Especially lately. I've been going bananas in the kitchen.
I rarely follow any kind of recipe unless it's something like crepe batter or some crazy dish I've never made before. For the most part, I wing it. Yes my dishes for the time being are simple and as I grow in the kitchen, so will my list of sexy, exotic ingredients.
It's weird how I turned out to be a pretty good cook, considering my Dad was no Emeril and couldn't cook his way out of a paper sack (does that even make sense?) and my Mom (Sorry Mom, I love you) was no Martha Stewart. Don't get me wrong, she had some killer dishes. Chicken cacciatore, Chicken Kiev, a pretty mean spaghetti sauce and I'm sure  few more that I can't remember, which I'm sure she will remind me of quite angrily in about 30 minutes.
Unfortunately, she had a failure or two as well. Like the one called "Chow Mein" that, as I found out later in life, was not actually chow mein at all but some the f**k do you spell that damn word? concoction of vegetables and bean sprouts that could only be called "crap mein."
Hey Mom, remember that big pan of corn bread with hot dogs in it you made that one time? Or your boyfriend's lasagna that had HARD BOILED EGGS IN IT? No? Well I do. (did I mention how much I love you?)


Cooking is fun. It's cheaper than eating out (duh) and for the most part, is healthier. (please keep in mind that when I say something is "healthy" I'm comparing it to a giant taqueria burrito or a large pizza, so it's all relative.) It's a great way to get together with friends and experiment with new stuff and it's super cool when you actually pull off a winner.

So I'll be regularly posting pics of some of the delectable delights that are flowing out of my kitchen faster than my Mom could ruin a casserole.

Tonight was crepe night. This bad unit had asparagus, mushrooms, garlic, onion and a bit of pesto. Sounds delish, huh? Well is WAS! The pic doesn't really do it justice, but hey, I"m a cook damn it! Not a photographer!

And you can't make a dinner crepe without making a dessert crepe. yes? This wonderful delight had fresh strawberries, whipped cream, chocolate sauce, almonds and some sauce I made out of heavy whipping cream, vanilla and powdered sugar.
Needless to say, it's not around anymore.

I think I may just hop on the treadmill for a little while...if I can waddle over to it.


Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Father's day.

It's funny to think back to when I was a kid. My old man was quite a character.
He could be one of the meanest sonsabitches or the nicest guy you'd ever meet. I usually only noticed the mean part when I was younger, which is probably because I was a big pain in the ass.
I got in fights at school, goofed off, didn't study as much as I could have and rarely listened. I seem to recall being grounded about 40 weeks a year.

For some reason, I don't recall a lot of my youth, but there are a few things I remember...

I remember when I was about 6, laying on the couch, he on his back and me on top of him, both staring up as he blew smoke rings towards the ceiling. Funny to think about how outrageous that would be considered now, but back then it was rare we got to hang out, just the two of us. He must have smoked a whole pack of cigarettes.
I remember being yelled at constantly to keep my elbows off the table and to chew with my mouth closed.
I remember bragging about something once and being told "No matter how good you are, there will always be someone better."
I remember how he loved his Mother.
I remember his patience while I sat on his lap and he taught me how to tell time.
I remember how he would yell at the top of his lungs at the drop of a hat.
I remember how he taught me that there is good in everyone.
I remember praying with him.
I remember sitting around with him and his poker buddies while they told dirty jokes, like I was one of the guys.
I remember how he did the best he could.
I remember his love of Asteroids.
I remember his selfishness and his selflessnes.
I remember him trying to duplicate my Grandma's chicken soup recipe for years and failing miserably.
I remember sitting in McDonalds enjoying strawberry milkshakes and McChicken sandwiches.
I remember that I am who I am greatly because of him.
I remember not being as good of a son as I could have been.

I remember the day he was laid to rest.

I remember a lot, now that I think about it.

I miss you, Dad.

David John Bruni
Oct. 8 1940 - Jan. 30 1997

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Sweet Saturday Scores.

So I once again headed out for my weekly treasure hunt, and sure enough I found a lot of cool stuff that I was looking for (and some that I wasn't.)

My main goal was to find a lamp for my desk. Go figure, the first sale I stopped at I found a lamp for my desk. It set me back a cool $3. I like the round/square thing going on and the colors kinda go with everything.
I also bought the little cubby thing next to it a few weeks ago for $2. It's cool for storing all my camera/ipod cables etc.
Oh yeah, got the picture on the wall (and a matching one that's on a different wall) for $16. =)
Did I mention I got my faithful laptop two years ago at a garage sale for $80? I was pretty apprehensive about dropping that much dough, especially on a computer, but it's been a killer machine and I couldn't be happier with it.

Let's see, what else did I get...?

I saw this little mirror and thought "I really don't need that, but it's kinda cool, I'm sure I can find somewhere to put it" so I bought it for $5 and laid it flat on the dining room table. I think I like it. Also picked up the wooden vase for $3 a while back.
Last week I picked up this great chair. The one I had had been shredded by Amy's cats and I was sick of looking at it. $25. Hello!
I also picked up the plant and pot (actually two of them) for $5 each. Oh  yeah, and the rug too. Also $5. =)

I'm not much for religion, but I saw this cross and had to get it. I had a spot on one wall that was begging for something and this worked out perfectly. You can see it in the reflection of the mirror on the wall by my dining room table.

A couple months ago my BBQ finally decided to call it quits and I have been grill-less ever since.
Until today that is. Found this great Weber grill (with a full propane tank) The guy wanted $50 for it but took $35.
Guess who's cooking tri-tip tonight?

 And last but certainly not least, this little Sony radio. Back story: Two years ago I bought a radio at a garage sale for $3. It fit perfectly on the little shelf in my bathroom and sounded great, but alas, it stopped working about one and a half years ago. I was literally fiddling with it two weeks ago to see if I could get it to work again, but couldn't.
Imagine my surprise when I walked up some guy's driveway this morning and saw THE SAME EXACT RADIO in perfect working condition!!! I swear to God I almost screamed like a girl when I saw it, but I played it cool and was all "Hey, how much for the old radio?"
The guy wanted $5 for it. I asked if he would take $4 for it and he said yes. So I handed him a $5 bill and asked if he had change. lol
Definitely a good day!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Saturdays are not for sleeping in, they're for garage sales.

I am the cheapest person I know.

Don't get me wrong, I love spending money. Who doesn't? I just don't like spending a lot of money. My ex wife used to bitch about how cheap I am because I was always looking for the best deal or complaining about how expensive stuff is.
I make "decent" money but am by no means rolling in the dough. I'm fortunate enough to have very few bills and no debt, so I do okay. Yet I am constantly on the lookout for a good deal. Obsessed with finding a good deal is more like it.
I hate paying retail for anything and it's rare that I do. I was even kinda pissed the other day when I saw that Goodwill raised the prices of their shirts to $4.85. Yes, almost my entire wardrobe is from Goodwill and secondhand stores. Not only is it cheaper, but it's recycling.
No, I do NOT buy shoes, underwear, socks or bike clothes secondhand! I have some limits (although I did buy a beanie at a garage sale for .25 once)
Damn near my entire house is decorated with a mish mash of used stuff I've picked up at garage sales or thrift stores or with things that have been given to me.
I really love this time of year. Not only because of the beautiful bicycling weather, but because the garage sales in my neighborhood are off the hizzle. I said hizzle!
You can't swing a dead cat around here without running into a yard full of somebody elses' unwanted crap.

"One man's trash..."

It's almost embarrassing to admit, but I put aside about 2 hours every Saturday to roam the streets of East Sacramento going to yard sales and garage sales. I like to think of it as quality "me" time. I even have a planned route I drive that I will not veer from. Shit, this is starting to sound a bit OCD.
But there's nothing cooler than finding that one thing that would just look so perfect in that one place in my house (which looks pretty damn nice if I do say so myself.)
I also love to haggle, and in order to be a true cheap ass, you have to be willing to haggle and be good at it. There can be no shame when you haggle. Last week a lady was selling a sweet hammock for $3. I offered her $2. Now I have a badass hammock.
Garage sales are some cutthroat shit. All parking laws go right out the window. You can park on the wrong side of the street half on the sidewalk with your door open and engine running and it's okay, because it's a garage sale.

I've found bicycles, bike parts, knick knacks, furniture, mirrors and decorations that I could never afford to buy at retail. A lot of which I turn around and sell on Craigslist for WAY more than I paid. Last summer I probably made a good $1200 selling used bikes that I bought for next to nothing, fixed up and flipped.

No, I am not one of those crazy people that buys all kinds of weird things that he doesn't need and I don't have a house cluttered with ugly crap. I do know when to say when.

I'll likely be posting pics of my garage sale treasures in the coming months. Don't be j, but I have a sixth sense for finding really cool stuff. It's a gift, really. So don't you go out there trying to be as garage sale savvy as I am, because you'll likely end up quite disappointed.


What a great way to wake up....or not...

You ever wake up and one of your favorite songs is playing on the radio? A while back "Fated to Pretend" by MGMT was just starting when the alarm went off. I absolutely LOVE this song. For some reason, it's just magical to me. I laid there in bed and sang like an idiot while Dewey and Tex just sat and stared at me like "WTF dude, let's get some breakfast going please."
I wonder if what song is playing when the alarm goes off is directly related to how my day is going to go. KISS = today is going to RAWK! Linkin Park = may as well stay in bed because I'm probably going to get hit by a garbage truck as soon as I walk out the door.
Remember that guy who was hiking and got his arm stuck between two rocks and had to cut it off and hike back to civilization alone? I wonder what he woke up to that day. Probably Bob Marley or something.
Maybe I'll buy an alarm clock that plays MP3's or CD's so I can wake up to my favorite songs and every day would be the best day ever.
Meh, probably better not to mess with the universe in that way. I'll just keep playing "Radio Roulette" and see what happens.

Today I woke up to Collective Souls, which leads me to believe that today will suck balls.

I'm new to this, so bear with me.

Yeah, so I'm gonna blog. 123 GO!

I'll start by saying that I am NOT a writer! Not even close. I have pretty good grammar and a decent vocabulary, but that's about it. I don't really use big words and when I do, they're probably not appropriate. Hey, appropriate is kind of a big word. So what I'm getting at is if you're looking to read well written intelligent blah blah blah, this is not the place.
I honestly don't even know what I'll be blogging about (okay, I have an idea, otherwise I wouldn't be here in the first place) and chances are, I'll look at this mess I'm typing right now in a few months and be pretty embarrassed. I imagine there's a blogging learning curve. I'm sure I'll be super awesome at it soon enough.

I lead a pretty dull life, so how interesting this will be depends on the reader.

A little about me:

I'm 40 years old, bald, ridiculously good looking, a bit pudgy (you're lookin' at my gut, aren't you? WELL I'M WORKIN' ON IT!), almost divorced (which I'm sure I'll get into some time in the future), I live alone, have two Corgis named Dewey and Tex who I love more than anything and are honestly the only reason I'm sane today. Okay, so I don't live "alone" but you get it. I'm not looking for love, salvation, enlightenment or really anything in particular other than one of my missing favorite socks. They had little planets on them and were SO comfortable and good at wicking away moisture. Srsly, where the FUCK did it go?

I will NEVER talk about politics.

I ride bikes. I ride bikes a lot. I am in love with all things bicycle. At last count in my garage I had eleven bikes. Yes, eleven. I seem to use commas a lot.

I just started training for Ironman Cozumel which is in November, so you will have to get used to me bitching and moaning about motivation (or lack of), sore muscles, getting up early, bragging about how many miles I swim/bike/run every day, feeling bad because I'm fat and can still run/ride faster than you, which I'm sure will all get old after a while, but it's my gig and will be consuming the majority of my time for the next six months, so stfu and just live vicariously (big word) through me.

Even though I just woke up from a nap, I'm tired and am going to bed.

I think I might like this blogstuff.