Sunday, February 23, 2020

Thank You

I open up this blog post with a THANK YOU to everyone that has liked my Wheeler’s Dog Facebook page and those that have taken the time to listen to my first podcast on YouTube.

After listening to the podcast, I could tell that I was nervous for some reason. I’m not usually nervous before cracking open a microphone. I think that I was feeling the pressure from myself to make it “good”. Sure, there’s room for improvement. Adjustments will be made over time. Features added. Etc.

The first five episodes will be available to everyone. Then there will be 2 episodes per week. One available to everyone and the other will be on Patreon for a donation of just $4 or more.

I stole the idea from Jeff Kay and his podcast THE WEST VIRGINIA SURF REPORT. It seems fair to me because it’s difficult to find sponsorship. He gave me his blessing.

The Wheeler’s Dog podcast is part of The Less Desirables Network. It’s great being a part of podcast network along side other great podcasts like The Less Desirables, Fan Interference, The Man Who Ate The Town, The Beer Dads, Apartment 5B, and Beeswax Vinyl & More.

My podcast is only on YouTube right now, but soon it’ll be available on Spotify, Stitcher, TuneIn, and all the other places you get podcast from. I’ll keep them on YouTube. I want them readily available for ear consumption. I want listeners to find them under any rock they may turn over.

And if you haven’t heard it… Click this!

Tuesday, February 04, 2020

I'm Becoming A Dust Bowl

The other night in bed, I asked my wife to scratch my back. The itch was between the shoulder blades. Unless you’re a contortionist, you cannot get that itch scratched fast enough. You’ll use a barbed wire wrapped baseball bat to scratch that itch if that’s the nearest tool to use. Even a flaming piece of wood.

She was scratching and I was practically kicking my leg like I was starting a dirt bike because it felt so good. She said, “Honey, you’ve got dry skin.” And she stopped scratching.

“Well, don’t quit scratching,” I said.

Then she said something about my skin coming off.

“Wait… what? My skin is coming off? Is it coming off in sheets? Is it flaking off? How much am I losing?? Dammit, I need my epidermis!”

“Stop being a baby,” She said. “It’s been cold and your skin just got a little dry. You’re getting older.”

How can my skin get dry between the shoulder blades? How does that happen?

I keep a shirt on most of my waking hours. I produce heat and humidity under that shirt. What the hell? How am I suddenly becoming too arid??

After visions of me cracking up like drying mud in the desert, I eventually fell asleep. But how can this happen? Is this why women are constantly slathering up with lotion?

I’m just into my 50s and I’ve only experienced dry hands during the colder months. I’m drinking nearly a gallon of water every day now. Is this a sign of things to come? Do I now need regular checkups with a dermatologist?

I NEED to keep my skin soft and supple. Do the makers of Oil of Olay offer daily capsules to take orally?

I don’t want to stain my clothing or become slicker than an eel. I’ve seen the way women slather up. It’s like they’re greasing up a damn axle for a big ass truck. I had a girlfriend that would get out of the shower, grab a 5-gallon bucket of Aveeno daily moisturizer, and a start applying that stuff onto her body with a bricklayer’s trowel.

Is this a normal thing as we age? Or has my lack of moisturizing caught up with me? Does this kind of thing happen to you?

Sunday, February 02, 2020

Don't Sniff Me Until Further Notice

Who purchases the soap in your home?

Here in the Big House, the MIL has taken it upon herself to keep the soap stocked up. It’s greatly appreciated. Soap is one less thing to agonize over when doing the weekly shopping. She keeps us stocked with bar and liquid soaps. Regular and anti-bacterial. She also keeps up with our family toothpaste demands.

But lately things have gone slightly awry in the shower department. At least for me, that is. The current bar of soap doesn’t have a pleasant scent. I use it, but I ain’t crazy about it.

For over a month, I ignored the unpleasant bar of soap. It was there, but the handmade soaps that Jamie purchased for everyone EXCEPT me were readily available for me to use. They made me smell pleasant. I was a deliciously fragrant beast. A pleasure to sniff.

I wasn’t too crazy about one of them though. There were like little wood chips in the dang thing. I could feel them scratching my skin. I just got a feeling that the soap was making microscopic cuts and I can’t have that. It could lead to some kind of infection, right??

Jamie says that the little wood chips were actually pieces of oatmeal. But they didn’t look like any Quaker Oats that I’ve ever seen.

But now the fancy handmade soaps have come to a sudsy end and I’m left with that white bar of funk. Sure, I could check the MIL’s stash for a better smelling bar, but I’m a man dammit! I need to man up and use that bar until there are no more suds to produce.

I want to ask where she got the soap, but I’m afraid of her follow up questions. She CANNOT answer a question until she questions your question. And she takes EVERYTHING so damn personally. The slightest critique becomes a major stick for her craw to get stuck on. Then her little passive aggressive button gets pushed and she’s no longer purchasing the soap. And if soap doesn’t make it to my grocery list, then the wheels come off the train and things are majorly derailed.

My favorite mass-produced soap is Zest. But the MIL gets whatever the hell she’s gonna get from the Dollar General “sale bin”. So that bar of funky soap is probably called Sezt or Etsz. I don’t know.

Saturday, February 01, 2020

Crickets, Crickets, Crickets

Have you ever interviewed for a job where you walked out thinking “You know, that went well. By the way the interviewer was talking, I feel like I aced it.”?

Well, that was the case for me last week. I was actually called in for an interview and I thought it went well. As I was leaving, I was told that if I didn’t get a call by Friday, yesterday, that the position was filled.

They didn't call me.

The job really wasn’t a big deal. Just a part-time gig with more stability than I’m seeing at my current part-time job. And what I mean by that is there have been major changes. I feel that it’s just a matter of time until a change occurs where it involves someone telling me that my services are no longer needed.

I worked out of Wake Forest, NC and it was great. I could expect to work at least 3 out of the 4 days that I told them that I was available. I enjoyed it. I enjoyed the people. I learned how to hook up trailers. Then someone made some cuts and changes. I was one of the cuts.

I was offered to keep my job by working in the office on the phones. It took me and them one week to realize that it wasn’t going to work. In my defense, I wasn’t really given the materials needed to understand what the hell I was doing. Customers had questions that I didn’t have answers to. I actually had to tell a customer, “I’m sorry. I don’t have an answer to that question. And I don’t have a supervisor around to help me find that answer.”

As you can imagine, I got a bit of an earful from that customer even though I offered to call them back with an answer. At that moment, I felt like nothing was actually being done to help me transition into that position. Since changes were affecting them in the office as well, they were a little green too. I was so frustrated that I nearly said “Screw this noise” and walked out. But having worked for Jack Murphy and the Murphy in the Morning show, I knew that I could carry on. I just had to get over my frustration of not being fully prepared by people that aren’t fully prepared for the roles they’re now in.

Thankfully, someone realized that I wasn’t cut out for the office and put me back in the field as some kind of clandestine driver. They put me there because things were backing up because of the overall changes. I was back to a happy place, but the hours were lacking.

I’ve been applying for full and part-time jobs since September of 2017. I’ve only gotten three responses for interviews. It’s very disheartening knowing that I have experience and possess the knowledge to do lots of things but I hear only crickets when it comes to callbacks. And keep in mind, I must have applied for over 200 jobs. So, 3 out of 200??

I keep applying and I keep hearing crickets. And now that a BIG CHANGE has occurred, the boss of the area was offered the immediate opportunity to pursue other employment options, I feel that my job will eventually be phased out. I’m the roach in the darkness and when the light hits what I’m actually doing, I’ll be snuffed out under a boot heel.

Right now, I’m good. I’m needed. Some major things are backed up. But I feel that it’s just a matter of time. I’m not panicked. There’s no nail-biting or loss of sleep. It’s just a feeling. And I could be wrong.

I think that my radio background keeps people from taking me seriously. But there’s not a whole lot that I can do about that. I’d like to use my skills by working from home, but it takes money to buy the necessary equipment. I just don’t feel right relying on the wife to bankroll my efforts since I’m only making a dent in the family expenses.

But on a happier note, the podcast is shaping up. I’m just waiting on a couple of pieces to fall into place to get it rolling. I’m very excited about the podcast. It’s gonna be a lot like this blog, but I’ll be riffing more. It’ll be more like a standup comedy routine because I’m better at telling stories than writing them. And I’ve got TONS of crazy stories to fall back on along with my daily observations. I hope everyone will give them a listen.

And it’s not too late to get onboard with sponsorships!

Sorry, I gotta find a way to monetize my podcast.

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Into The Great Wide Open

If you’re not a social media kinda person, you may have missed my recent announcement.

I’ve decided to join the over-populated world of podcasting!

That’s right! The world needs more podcasts and I’m finally ready to add my two-cents. I’m aware that no one really wants it, but the calling is there. The kind of calling that feels like a large toothless dog trying to take a chunk of flesh from my forearm. I feel it, but it’s not exactly urging me to jump out of bed, step into some turnout gear, slide down a pole, and hop aboard a wailing fire engine.

I’ve missed being on The Less Desirables podcast. I got to meet some folks from Winston-Salem were doing great stuff. I got to crack wise. And I got to talk about one of my greatest loves… Television.

Kristen Daukas and I toyed with the idea of taking the Tar Heel Taps radio show to podcasting, but my heart just wasn’t in it. Sure, it was great interviewing all of the brewers and owners, but it would be on our dime since finding sponsors is difficult. Why a sports radio station general manager didn’t see the value of keeping that show on the air is beyond me?

But then again, we couldn’t understand why they went with sports after so many have come and gone over the last couple of decades. So, apparently someone has money to burn or money to launder. You know, if the Netflix show ‘Ozark’ has taught me anything.

I see podcasting as the next step for this award-winning blog. Traffic to this joker isn’t what it used to be. It’s like folks don’t really care for reading anymore. That’s cool. I get it. Hell, I’m finally getting on this great podcasting thing. I’ve been enjoying the ever-loving snot out of the Hit Parade podcast. And I’ve been listening to Jeff Kay’s The West Virginia Surf Report’ podcast as well as The Less Desirables.

I plan on keeping them around 30 minutes so they’re easy to digest. And most people can listen to in the car on the way to work or on the way home. Or while they’re in the Hardee’s drive-thru. I just thought about these ideal moments… Listening while waiting at the doctor’s office or exercising at home, the gym, or the Y.

There’s more to come about the Wheeler’s Dog podcast. I got the artwork from some dude on I think it turned out great! Now I’m going through my royalty free sound library for a few things that could be considered an opening theme and closer. For those, I want to keep them short. People just can’t seem to sit through things more than 5 seconds. And sadly, I’m like that too.

My attempts at raising some funds by offering a custom t-shirt to offset the cost of the equipment to do it at home fell short of the mark. But hey, that’s cool. There are more pressing things to spend your money on during the holiday season.

The Wheeler’s Dog podcast ball is rolling. It’s just a matter of time to take this award-winning blog to the next level. And thank you to everyone that takes time out to read my ramblings. It is greatly appreciated.

If you really want my serious appreciation, feel free to give this blog a vote for the best in the Triad RIGHT HERE. It would be nice to add a second award when the podcasting is in full swing. I don’t like to campaign for such things because they always seem to backfire and I’ll look like a schmuck. So help me look like a schmuck, thanks!