High Pump Prices Give Me Gas

Gas has gone up once again. This time, presumably, under the pretense that the devastating Hurricane Katrina that has pummeled the southeastern United States has crippled our domestic oil production and therefore is deserving of a .25/gallon raise in price. The oil companies are telling the gas stations and convenience stores that in order to get their new loads of gas, they must raise their prices. So, they are forced to do so in order to even have gas. I'm sorry, but there is no way that the price of gas has been effected so quickly that it has necessitated a quarter per gallon raise in one day. Everyone seems to have their theory as to why this is happening now. Today, on a local radio talk show, I heard one person espouse their theory that gas prices are rising because of the automotive makers latest "employee discount" sales strategy. There are somehow "more cars" now on the road so we need more gas and that supports an upturn in gas prices. At least that theory was good for a laugh. It's about the only laugh I've had regarding the entire issue.

President Bush has stated his interest in exploring the idea of tapping the U.S. oil reserves to take some of the pressure off the American pocketbooks. This is precisely why we have built these reserves in the first place, to my understanding. When an event occurs to disrupt oil production, we have resources to lean upon until the situation can be repaired. To quote the above article, "the reserve was established to cushion oil markets during energy disruptions." Sounds exactly like this is the case. So, why is this even a topic to ponder? We have to think and decide if this is a "natural disaster"? I believe the folks of Louisiana and Mississipi will tell you it certainly is, and would be supported by the rest of the nation. The article also aims to correct the misguided notion that gas prices even should be effected by Hurricane Katrina. Again quoting the article: "The expected move would be designed to give refineries in the area a temporary supply of crude oil to take the place of interrupted shipments from tankers or offshore oil platforms affected by the storm. It would not be intended to keep a lid on soaring gasoline prices." I guarantee if this happened last year at this time, being an election year, we'd be paying just over $2.00 a gallon now, and not closer to $3.00 as a nation, because this is about as "hot-button" of a topic as the war here in America right now.

Anyway, I really dislike being political...but this whole subject has me really agitated right now. I miss living in the northeast where I could make a tank of gas last a week very easily. Living in a big city that is so spread out like the Dallas/Ft. Worth metroplex, I use 4-5 gallons a week easily, and I don't even travel that much right now. *sigh* I guess I can cling to the hope that my favorite fillup station, QuikTrip, will keep the prices low. They're always the lowest price, plus, they have the yummy drinks. Love me some QT drinks! Mmmmmmmm....Orange Cream-Vanilla slushes.


Movies and Snoozing...

This last weekend passed very quickly for a time space that was filled with such a dearth of activity. Nonetheless, it was still enjoyable. I tend to prefer the weekends that leave me and LampLover home relaxing on the couch/bed/floor/dog.

Friday was recovery from a long day at work - I stayed up watching movies with LL. Once again, Vince Vaughn didn't disappoint. We watched a silly little flick called Blackball in which he plays a sports agent. The premise of the movie is rather absurd, but not implausible in this day and age. A young Brit is destined to turn the sport of lawn bowling into England's second biggest sport because of his brash, rebellious attitude and amazing skill. Wacky hijinx ensue.

Saturday we slept in and then puttered around the house. LL went to work out, as she does most everyday. I'm so proud of her for being able to stick to her workout plan on a regular basis. I am horrible about being faithful to a workout schedule, especially lately. That might explain the belly. Anyhoo - Saturday night we watched Kung Fu Hustle, which was really very entertaining. It flirted with being a bad movie several times, but the artistic direction in it was so brilliant that it managed to keep us both engrossed and left us quite happy we had watched the film by the end.

Sunday, I was very lazy. I slept until early afternoon. I haven't slept that long in a LONG time. I could cling to the flimsy excuse that I was up until 4:30am, and really I didn't get much more than 8 hours of sleep, which is an acceptable amount of time to sleep, but that's really pretty sad. By the time we were both awake and I had dressed and walked Hunter, it was 2:15pm. We had 15 minutes to make it to Cafe Roti - the Indian-style buffet that LL and I had planned to visit - not enough time. So, we drove around trying to find food that wasn't horrible for us (fast food) or too expensive (most everything else). I was not a good boyfriend...let her down by having us miss the Indian Buffet in the first place...which made ME sad too, cause I really like the buffet. But, we had to let it go - it's time was past. So, we scrounged around the house for food and then met up with Da Cheat to look at some houses. Da Cheat is buying a house and BurntoutZen and I will be his roomies in the new casa, if all goes according to plan (crosses fingers and knocks on wood). LL, Da Cheat and I met up with BZ, and we visited 3 houses. We believe we have narrowed it down to 2 houses, at this point, and one of those may potentially be unavailable. So, we very well could have picked our house this weekend. We should know for sure at some point this week.


That New Blog Layout Smell...


...wait for it....


Ahhhhhh....oh yes, the pleasant aroma of a new blog. Or something. Well, I guess just picking out a new layout would be more like Fabreze-ing a used car, but you get the picture.

I felt a good change was needed, and hopefully this will be embraced as such. New fonts, new design - definitely more modern in feel, and that keeps in line with the spirit of my posts. Feel free to leave comments on what you think of the changes (good/bad/indifferent) if you have seen the old one.


This just in...

Not quite a real post here - just photo updating y'all.

I finally updated the Flickr page with toobing photos - they're viewable if you click on the link I just gave you, or you can click on the Flickr flash box on the left-hand side of the blog.

Thank you. That is all.


I'm Alternative to Alternative

Well, not really. There's nothing particularly ground-breaking or revolutionary about my newest fascination. But, it's still kind of an "indy" thing and makes me feel counter-culture. So, I giggle about it on occasion.

What I'm talking about is the new Podcasting phenomenon. LampLover got me my first mp3 player for my birthday, and it's great to listen to all my mp3s on, as I have thousands...but one of the other new, fun things to do is check out podcasts. The genre is sort of a mix of ham radio, college radio and MTV's old show 120 minutes. But, what it lacks in polish and flair, it often makes up in humor and just good, old-fashioned great music. One of my favorite 'casts so far is a show called Accident Hash. The dude that runs the show, C.C. Chapman, does the show from Boston, MA and seems to have pretty good taste in music from what I have seen so far. I've heard everything from local New England bands (which I miss - lots of great places to see small shows up in the northeast) to bands from Oklahoma, Washington state and California. By listening to his show, and others like his, I've stumbled upon some bands I never would have heard before. Some merit no more listens than the one I give on his show, but others are very good and worth hearing more. You can download the songs from the Podsafe Music Network he is a part of, or you can go and do what I would recommend - support the band and buy an album.

In the last week and a half, I've found several new very good bands, and have found a new "indy music" side of myself I had kind of given up on, due to lack of resources and time. Podcasting has made it very easy to get back into the small music scene. And, it sticks it to big corporate radio at the same time. Bite it Clear Channel! hehehe...