Monday, February 02, 2004

It sounds eerily familiar. This same sort of thing happened just a week ago. Exactly a week ago. What am I talking about, you ask? It snowed. It snowed since Saturday night, It is still snowing. It is supposed to snow a bit more, too. I am not upset by this, though. It is good news. A snowy winter may mean an end or at least rlief from this drought which plagued the state through most of last year. The experts always say that nature has a way of making up for things and let's hope this is a beginning. It's not much but better than nothing at all. Oh, sure, it makes driving a pain. But that's just until the roads are cleared and then it is back to your merry way of speeding along to whatever your next menial task may be. Other than work and the weekly stop at the grocery or discount store, how often are so many trips really necessary?

Sure, little Billy or Suzie has basketball or dance class but that's part of growing up and having kids. They have activities that they need to be delivered to. I try to take care of my tasks on my way home from work or dedicate a Saturday afternoon to all that
'necessary' running which I had put off during the week for whatever reason. Mainly because I don't feel like driving into the congested burbs to do such menial tasks during the week when traffic is really a nuisance.

I did that sort of thing on Saturday. It began with a late start out the door for a quick lunch and a stop for a few not-so-necessary necessities at Target. I always find myself wandering through the entire store to see what fantastic deals they have (clearance) and always end up buying something I hadn't planned on. Today's trip included some herbs and spices, lotion and a yellow onion. What an odd combination but it's all stuff that I needed.

From there, my journey took me towards a not-so-close car dealership which promises the "Largest Selection of Chevrolets in Minnesota" but yet did not have a single black Chevy Silverado extended cab in all of their inventory. Odd. I quickly gave up since this was just a scouting mission to see what is available.

Onward. The next stop was due to the need to print something. I was easily talked out of buying a new ink cartridge for my current printer which had been acting up essentially since I bought it three or so years ago. Best Buy would do for this. They always have printers. After all, a printer is a printer, right? Wrong! After listening to a factory representative from Epson talk about the technicalities of printers I decided to leave.

We're only a few miles from CompUSA, why not look there? Enter through doors. Search printers. Find ANOTHER Epson factory representative. I asked questions. Stood with mouth open while I absorbed his answers. Alright, I'll take THAT one! Sorry, all sold out. You can call back on Tuesday.

Great, now I know which printer I want but it is out of stock. Walk across parking lot to Circuit City. All I can say about Circuit City is this - WHAT A JOKE. I have never liked Circuit City. In fact, now I am done even uttering the name of their store. Venture back across parking lot with wind at our backs this time to my car. Back to the freeway we go. Down the road to the only good Best Buy store within 50 miles of where I live.

Wadddya know, as soon as I head towards the printer section - another Epson factory representative. They must have gotten a deal on them somehow. I asked about the printer. Sorry - sold out, I heard they have some in the MAPLEWOOD store. No way. Too far. Opposite direction of my known territory. I'll try Burnsville - that was my response.

So there we were, heading back out to the freeway. Down said freeway for approximately two block until exit ramp for yet another freeway. Horrible cloverleaf design for the interchange. Get cut off as I try to merge by some yuppie who was DETERMINED to get ahead of me so he could exit to stop off for what would probably be a cup of coffee and a freakin' bagel. Dumbass. After the rage boiled over from my ears we arrived at our THIRD Best Buy store of the day. Walk into printer section of store. Much to my surprise there was no Epson factory representative. And again, to my surprise, they had the printer. ONE printer left. It was mine. I snatched it up like a homeless man would a chicken wing. I had my printer! Quickly grabbed a new power strip and another 'necessary accessory' and headed out to the car.

By this time it was the supper hour. After 6 PM already. A whole day shot for a printer. Stopped at one of the dozens of chain restaurants along the Burnsville strip. Not an official name but it is like a miniature version of the Bloomington strip less the hotels and corporate headquarters. Ok, so it's nothing like it. Simply a bunch of chain stores mixed with a bunch of chain restaurants along a multi-lane county road which travels across the better part of two counties.

Waited for a table for what seemed like more than twenty minutes. Twenty minutes was what they had said but I knew better. By nearly 8 PM the meal was finished, the Coke was drank and the bill was paid. So much for my plan of finding a couple of shirts for myself today.

After hooking up the printer and trying some of the setting it was off to a movie. And another discovery - it was snowing. The movie was well worth the cost. I won't usually stay that but this was, by all means, a GREAT movie. It was well written and had some darn good acting and a decent plot. It was one of those movies that makes you think how one event can change so much. It also changed what I thought about the star of the movie. It was quite a departure from his normal dopey roles as the lovable idiot.

The end of the day has come. The story of my Saturday.

What followed, eventually, was Monday. Monday was an average Monday. I won't bore you with the details but through the course of the day I unearthed one interesting fact. A poll on MSN regarding the war in Iraq. The poll's question and results as of 2 PM of today follow...

Did the White House knowingly misrepresent intelligence on Iraq? * 11553 responses

No. The administration was misled, too

Yes. Bush and Cheney knew the intelligence was wrong

I don't know

It's an interesting tidbit and I hope that this has an effect on how people vote in the November elections. At least the voters in this poll realize what kind of man our president is.

Stay tuned.

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