Family Stuff

This weekend was dominated by my brother-in-law getting himself hitched. This was a very small affair (thanks COVID!) with just immediate family. We remoted in the bride’s family. Everything went splendidly. I did have some musings on the event:

  1. Despite all the teachings from sitcoms of my childhood, the wedding did not cause my niece-in-law (?) who is nine-months pregnant to go into labor.

  2. I smoked two of the large pork loins for the wedding. We had to borrow a neighbor’s grill so we could get both loins smoked in time. The upside is The Wife has tacitly agreed to the purchase of a larger grill when we move next year.

  3. Of course, when we smoke two of the small loins, the pork runs out. Two of the big loins, and there’s an abundance of leftover meat. Not that I’m complaining that hard.

  4. The Wife and her mother are frikkin’ amazing at cake decorating. And cake making.

  5. You know you have a reputation in the family when some describes how much cake they want by saying “half a Derek piece.”

Fun Show Time!

Last weekend, my brother-in-law and I went to the local gun show. This was his first gun show since diving into the gun world about nine months ago. This was my first gun show in a long while, and the first in my new town. It was much more sparsely attended than the last one I was at.

The crowd density was more pre-COVID Walmart instead of pre-COVID mosh pit. Masks were required, but proper usage wasn’t really enforced. Guns were more plentiful than I expected, but prices were running higher. Ammo prices were through the roof. A box of Speer Gold Dots were $60. I did end up picking up a couple of short magazines for my grandpa’s M1 carbine. Now, I need some more .30 carbine ammo.

I’m convinced I want three more guns before I would consider my safe to have the essentials.

  1. I want a better AR than my M&P-15 sport. Maybe a non-AR AR. I’d like an AUG, but I want something that runs AR mags. Maybe an MCX. A friend of my suggested getting a SCAR, but I don’t have the money his employer has to throw around.

  2. A carbine running M&P magazines. Maybe an AR pistol with brace. I’ve gots me lots of M&P mags. This one I’m really tempted to get a can for it.

  3. A double action .22 revolver. For training and plinking purposes.

Once the niece and nephew turn 21 (thanks Rick Scott!), I’ll need to add a .22 rifle.

Which reminds me. I need to take a couple of days off and take them to the range.

Car Shopping

After an off-hand remark to her co-worker, we ended up selling The Wife’s car to said co-worker’s daughter. Doing a private sale on a car with a lien is a PITA. Honestly, I could see car dealerships offering a transfer service. I’d pay a couple hundred bucks to have someone more knowledgeable go through all the steps.

This event necessitated the need for a new vehicle for The Wife. She’s wanted an SUV as her next car in the whole time we’ve been together. We had a plan for her to get one when the current vehicle was paid off. Well, that got shot in the face. Technically, the old car will be paid off, just not when we planned.

The real fun was introducing her to the used car market. Particularly when she realized that she could get more car for less money. It was even more fun listening to her describe her epiphany to said co-worker. In the end, she picked up a 2017 Honda CR-V with all the bells and whistles she wanted.

News From The Homefront

The Wife and I, like pretty much everyone, are under “safer at home” orders, as well as a curfew. I didn’t think I would suffer from cabin fever, but there have been a few times when I’ve been inordinately happy to run errands.

I am so glad that we managed to sell my Tampa house right before this insanity started. Now, I don’t have to worry about how the housing market will go in the future, I don’t have funds being diverted up there for upkeep, and we’ve managed to use funds from the sale for things we’ve needed during our extended home stay.

The Wife and I are both working from home. My job provides we with a computer, while The Wife remotes in using my home workstation. This has been going along better than either of us anticipated, except for the few times where we’ve had calls at the same time. She has also been surprised at the daytime antics of the cats – including their proclivity for making themselves known on conference calls. This arrangement has also led to some interesting purchases. Such as a new keyboard for The Wife to use on my workstation because she hates my ergonomic one. Fortunately, she already had a mouse, because she also *despises” my trackball. We also picked up a desk elliptical. I’m starting to hate that, but at least I’m doing some cardio daily.

We also got me some new monitors since I was working on a couple of small ones. Good for the couple of days a week I was teleworking previously. Annoying working from home all the time. The small ones were given to a neighbor who needed them for their kids. Getting the necessary cables was a chore, but thankfully we have some sources that scored them for us.

Our Toastmasters club has had its first virtual meeting. It feels very different than our normal meeting. I noticed people act more like we’re having a party rather than a formal meeting. More talking during some of the segments. Not interrupting prepared speeches, but more back and forth in other areas. Plus giving a prepared speech over video is difficult. I can’t get the same read on the audience. It did let me practice what I think will become my “pocket speech”.

There’s some other gun news, but that will wait for later…

Movie Fun

Miguel posted on this on FB, and I decided to have some fun with it. Then I roped The Brother and The Wife into it.


Favorite movie: Black Hawk Down

Movie that makes you remember your childhood: Transformers (Animated)

Favorite Tom Cruise movie: Edge of Tomorrow

Movie that makes you cry: Forrest Gump

Favorite 80’s movie: Real Genius

Favorite comedy: Undercover Blues

Favorite sports movie: Necessary Roughness

Favorite courtroom movie: 12 Angry Men

Favorite horror Movie: In the Mouth of Madness

Most overrated movie: Pulp Fiction

Movie you can watch over and over again: McLintock!

Movie with the best soundtrack: Pirates of the Caribbean

Movie you’re most embarrassed that you like: Grease 2 (maybe?)

Favorite Christmas movie: Die Hard

Favorite sequel: John Wick 2

The Brother

Favorite movie: My Blue Heaven

Movie that makes you remember your childhood: Rock ‘N’ Rule (1983)

Favorite Tom Cruise movie: Edge of Tomorrow/Live. Die. Repeat

Movie that makes you cry: I know I’ve cried watching a movie, but I can’t think of one that makes me cry.

Favorite 80’s movie: Ghostbusters

Favorite comedy: Real Genius

Favorite sports movie: Shaolin Soccer

Favorite courtroom movie: 12 Angry Men

Favorite horror Movie: In the Mouth of Madness (I guess? I don’t really like horror films)

Most overrated movie: A Christmas Story

Movie you can watch over and over again: Oscar

Movie with the best soundtrack: The Dark Knight

Movie you’re most embarrassed that you like: Not embarassed about liking any movie.

Favorite Christmas movie: Die Hard

Favorite sequel: Gremlins 2

The Wife

Favorite movie: Grease

Movie that makes you remember your childhood: Wizard of Oz

Favorite Tom Cruise movie: Cocktail

Movie that makes you cry: Homeward Bound (anything with animals – that’s why I don’t watch them)

Favorite 80’s movie: Sixteen Candles

Favorite comedy: 10 Things I Hate About You

Favorite sports movie: Good Will Hunting

Favorite courtroom movie: A Few Good Men

Favorite horror Movie: The Blair Witch Project

Most overrated movie: A Christmas Story (I hate that movie)

Movie you can watch over and over again: Dirty Dancing

Movie with the best soundtrack: Titanic

Movie you’re most embarrassed that you like: Magic Mike

Favorite Christmas movie: The Grinch 🙂

Favorite sequel: The Twilight Movies (no judging)


Nope, not sick. Not even close. Doesn’t mean I’m not doing things like stepping up my hand washing regimen, keeping some extra social distance, and watching who I go around.

Which is why The Wife, The Brother, and I killed our trip out west later this month. When two of the people you’re supposed to be visiting are in their nineties, and your flight is supposed to go through Seattle…

Fortunately, companies are doing their best to make sure that we stay their customer by making it easy to cancel flights and such. So, all of that money we saved up for our trip will just have to sit in the bank until later this year.

Which, honestly, if this isn’t cleared up by then, we’ll need the money for other things.

Work is making noises about sending my team off to telework for the duration. Which should be interesting – and good for my fuel bill.

I’ll be honest. I’m not worried about catching it. I’m not even worried about surviving it if I somehow do catch it. I am fucking terrified of somehow transmitting it to someone who’s immune system couldn’t handle it.

Take care out there.

Snippets From Slack

The Brother, The Wife and I have a Slack channel. Mostly it’s just the normal family chatter. Then, sometimes it’s just funny.

Me: Sweet FSM, I think this is the first time I’ve used HLOOKUP to populate a report!

The Wife: That is so cool. How did you do that?

The Brother: I just love how the two of you nerd out on Excel.

Me: You do realize that Excel was a major bonding point for the two of us?

Family Dinner Time

My rocket scientist brother and his family moved across the state about eighteen months ago. The sister-in-law and the kiddos were over last weekend. My nephew was telling us about the campaign is running for his new friends. He was explaining how he was using a spider lycanthrope to lure his players into a spooky trap. I turned to The Brother.

Me: I think we did too good of a job.

Random Thoughts Part 735

We picked up some Mountain Dew Zero. I like it, at least as much as Diet Mountain Dew. Even better, this is a zero calorie as compared to Diet Dew’s low calorie. But Derek, Diet Dew is only 5 calories per 20 oz. Yeah, but with the quantities I drink on a regular basis, that adds up quick. DON’T JUDGE ME.

I’ve finished listening to the new book The End Is Always Near by Dan Carlin (of Hardcore History fame). How to describe it?

–Never listened to Hardcore History: How are we still alive? –Listens to episodes once, when they come out: How are we still alive? –Listens to episodes repeatedly: Oh, this again?

I still recommend his Hardcore History podcast.

Even after being together for better than two-and-a-half years, and being married for almost a year, it still amazes me how loud my wife’s family gets, and how quickly the volume ramps up. For them, that’s normal. For my family, that volume level is akin to a cobra showing its hood. One last ditch attempt to scare off someone before violence happens.

After almost two decades, I now have a subscription to the local paper. Sunday only. Mostly, it was coupons. Part of it is I’m leaning more to paying for content.

Tactical TJ Maxx

I have introduced my wife to whole subcultures she was unaware of prior to our meeting. This leads to hilarity when she then has to explain some of her husband’s foibles. Example:

Coworker: This good coffee. Where did you find it?

The Wife: Derek dragged me through the 5.11 store. (Editor’s Note: The coffee is Black Rifle Coffee)

Coworker: What’s a 5.11 store?

The Wife: It’s kind of like a tactical TJ Maxx.

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