Saturday, January 29, 2011


I am a Roombavangelist.

I don't hate vacuuming, not the way I hate mopping, but I always seem to find reasons not to do it. Of course I thought a Roomba would be great, but for a long time I couldn't afford one, and I thought it was a gimmick.

Some people think I'm a gadget buy, but I'm not really. I'm practical enough that I want things that work; I don't like gimmicks. Certainly not expensive gimmicks.

Then a close relative got a Roomba, and we were all amazed to find that it really worked. It's actually a very good vacuum. Part of the appeal is that it slides easily under sofas and chairs and tables where you ordinarily wouldn't go (or you have to move them, which is part of what makes vacuuming wearisome). But the big thing is that really picks up. Maybe part of it is that I have to clean it after every run, and I can see all the crap in the bin, whereas with my traditional upright vac, it all goes into a bag and I don't know what's in there.

But I have to clean Roomba's beater brush after every cleaning because it's full of dog and cat hair, and I don't have to do that with the upright. To me that means the Roomba is picking up hair that the upright missed.

You'd think I'd find picking fur out of the Roomba brushes to be a pain; yet I'd rather spend 10 minutes cleaning the Roomba than 1/2 an hour push/pulling the upright, no contest.

I took the thing to work and ran it in my office. The janitors vacuum every so often, yet the carpets look a hell of a lot better after the Roomba's gone over them.

So I got a Roomba of my own. But it wasn't enough just to have this, I felt compared to share the Good News. I took it into the office (the company doesn't want to buy them because they think they'll be stolen). I began lending it to my friends over the weekend. They were similarly amazed.

Then I found another one that was broken and fixed it. So now I had two. Great! I can keep one and lend the other one out. Except that I needed another battery. Well, then you need a special charger for it. So I found another used Roomba on eBay which had all the stuff. So now I have three. And if I get another battery, I can have one on loan and two running simultaenously here.

I'm breaking into a sweat just thinking about it.

Then I got a Scooba, which is the one that mops floors. It's interesting because unless your floor is horrible, you don't really see much of a difference, yet when the Scooba is done and you empty the dirty water tank, it looks like mud.

The bad part of the Scooba is that it's big: picture one of those gargantuan restaurant dinner plates. It's fine for the kitchen and the front door entry, but too big to negotiate my bathroom. And if it can't between the toilet and the tub or the toilet and the sink cabinet, it's almost pointless.

Now iRobot (the people who make it) are coming out with a smaller Scooba for exactly this reason, so it can get into the tighter areas in bathrooms. I dream of this thing.

If I had this much passion for romance, I'd be get getting laid every night.

I wonder if you could modify a Roomba for....

Saturday, January 22, 2011


The new profile photo is Roger Moore, circa late 60s around the end of The Saint. Or maybe 1973, when he started as James Bond. Moore was putting greasy kid stuff in his hair during The Saint years, but wore it dry as Bond; I can't tell which from the photo. In-between was The Persuaders period when he was heavier and wore his hair longer, and it's obviously not that.

Changed because Michael Caine in the straw hat looked too creepy. I couldn't read my own posts without looking at the image and thinking I was a dirty old man.

Jacking Off Shouldn't Be This Difficult

This is one of the big reasons I created this blog. I grew up in an era when we just did not discuss this sort of thing. Even when I was trading men's magazines with my friends in high school, we never spoke of it. I think the image was that we were all reading them at home in our wing-back leather chairs, wearing a smoking jacket and puffing a pipe. Visualizing each other in the reality of it, sitting on a toilet, trying to knock one out quietly in the middle of the afternoon in the hall bathroom, was a serious woodkill. If you thought about what your friends were really doing with those magazines, you wouldn't be able to get it up for a week.

This is exactly why I'm writing this blog: it's allowing me to discuss something that would never be talked about otherwise.

Some time, in a more appropriate post, I'll go into the social part of things, but for this post I'm just going to start with this background: I'm single, I'm not seeing anyone, I don't believe in one-night-stands or casual sex or hookers. Which means there's a whole lot of masturbation going on.

Some people can hump their right hand for their entire lives and love it, but for some of us it gets dull after awhile, no matter how much you like it. My hand is great, but it's not perfect. So every so often I start looking around for something else.

I've had a small variety of things over the years (which are grist for other posts). A few were terrible; a few were forgettable; and while I never found anything that was a great replacement for Rosie Palm and her five sisters, a few were worthwhile.

One of the toys I kept, and I still have it around, is called a "pussy & anus" (P&A) toy. It's a lump of some sort of rubber that's molded from a woman's genital area. Inside there are two channels, one from the "pussy" and one from the "anus," and they merge inside. The stem of that Y makes an air hole in the far end of the P&A (you normally don't see it in photos). That makes it much easier to clean, and you don't have to fight air pockets while you're using it. If you want suction, you just plug up the hole.

Most toys you hold in your hand, like a Fleshlight, and if you want a hands-free experience, you jam it in-between sofa cushions or mattresses or tape it onto a bedpost or whatever. A P&A is designed to be used hands-free. It's too heavy to use hand-held (you can, but you have to have Popeye forearms to sustain it). The bottom of it is flat and it's heavy, so it'll stay put where you set it.

And there lies the rub. I read a lot of product reviews and I never see anyone really discuss the true logistics on these things. For instance:

I don't want to "use my imagination" with this; it doesn't do it for me. I like to be watching something on the computer or the tv. That suddenly makes things very complicated, because the computer monitor is on a desk and the tv is on a bureau, which makes for comfortable viewing if you're in a chair.

I'm not in a chair if I'm using this thing.

The bed has two problems: if you're in a missionary position, you can't see the tv no matter which way I'm facing. The bed is against the wall so I can't go cross-wise. So unless I want to set up some elaborate mirroring system, the bed is out.

I could put it on the seat of the chair and attack it from a kneeling position, but the chairs are too high. Even my computer chair, at its lowest, is just a bit too high.

I could put it on a box, but finding a box that's the right height has been difficult. Plus the P&A is heavy, so if you use a cardboard box, the box shimmies and sways and bounces in ways you don't necessarily enjoy.

I find it's best on the floor, placed on a pillow or a sofa cusion. It's a comfortable height and I can stretch out. But I need another hinge in my neck because I can't get a good view of the tv.

The last place I was at, I had a console TV that could be comfortably viewed from floor level. (Wait—I now have a light, flat panel tv instead of the old monster CrT. I could easily set it on the floor—nope. I'd have to replace the cables with much longer ones.)

Anyway, that leaves books and magazines. Since I like to flip pages a lot, it becomes awkward. It's a bit like Gomez Addams reading a magazine while standing on his head, with that fast flick of the page so he doesn't unbalance himself. I find myself worrying more about turning pages than what I'm supposed to be doing.

Then there's the temperature. In the summer there's no problem, but in the winter you have to plan ahead. You have to fill the sink with hot water and submerge the toy for while to warm it up thoroughly. A small toy warms realtively fast, but a solid P&A acts as a heat sink. So unless you're into necrophilia, sticking your johnson into a cold block of rubber sends a chill right up your spine, taking all the blood back with it. And while you're at it, you gotta warm up the lube, too. Ever been in the middle of a glorious session and then pour what feels like icewater on it? Eeeeeaaaaaaaaggggghhh

Sometimes it seems like dating is less trouble.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Dog Walking

When I was growing up I lived in houses with decent back yards, so the dogs could get a reasonable amount of exercise.  It wasn't until recently that I live in a house with a back yard that's roughly the size of my bathtub; so now I have dog-walking duties.

I don't mind walking the dog. It forces me to get some exercise when I might normally just become part of the sofa. And it takes some of the creepiness factor out of my walks.  When I'm by myself, I'm a potential threat.  With the pooch I'm just another shlub walking the dog.  You never think of Jack the Ripper or The Hillside Strangler with a leash and a baggie of fresh dog crap.  So as I see the neighborhood hotties walk or jog by, when I'm by myself I tend to get averted eyes and "don't look at me" postures; with the dog I get smiles.

Or I should say, I typically get smiles from moms pushing strollers.  God forbid the lady has a dog of her own, because then it's Michael Vick at the corner...

The other day I was standing at a corner with my dog, waiting for the light to change.  A lady jogs up next to me.  She's gorgeous.  I smile at her.  She smiles back.  My dog looks at hers, and hers is looking at mine.  I'm about to say something witting and charming and

grrrrrrr — that's her dog; and mine is growling, and I'm now having to buckle my knees and lean back because my dog is in tractor mode, pulling toward the other dog —

GRRRRRROOOWWWWWLLLL — and now she's pulling her dog back, and that's when the light flicked and poof, they were gone before blood could be shed.


I've had a pleasant, but very short, shouted conversation with what may be a nifty lady across a street, as we tried to get our frothing and frantic dogs past each other. At least twice a week I cause pandemonium at a local barber shop because her dog sees mine as I walk past and we're being invaded! Must kill foreign dog!!!.

There's another lady in the neighborhood whom I'd very much like to see at closer than half-a-block distance, but as soon as one of us spots the other, we jockey for position to put as much distance and parked cars between us as possible. I know nothing about her because I can't get within 50 yards of her.

People tell me that women are attracted to cute dogs (and mine is undeniably fluffy and adorably cute); but walking the dog is like having a Jane Doe restraining order.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Boring Introduction

but vaguely useful if you want to know what's going on.

So I followed the lead of another blogger (Chapter Two) and decided to create an anonymous persona for blogging purposes.  There's nothing big to hide: I'm not a celebrity; I'm not a public person; I don't have a reputation that would be destroyed if something I said here became public.  Hell, my reputation might actually improve.

But what happened on my other blogs is that I'm a private person, and I keep my internal editor high, and I was squelching a huge amount of things that I wanted to talk about because I didn't want to deal with friends or relatives, as well-meaning as they are, coming back to me about it.  I don't want my liberal friends asking me how I could consider joining the NRA.  I don't want my social-conservative friends giving me shit about why I favor gay marriage.  I don't want my boss to ask me what I was thinking when I complained about an idiotic policy at work.  I don't want my friends sniggering and asking me if I really had sex with an inflatable beach ball last summer.

This blog is about all the things that are part of my life, or that I find interesting, which I wouldn't easily discuss elsewhere.  That may include politics, definitely sex (which is why the content warning is on), and annoyances of everyday life.

Hopefully I'll be amusing doing it.

 P.S.  a quick note to anyone who thinks he may know who I am:  please do us both a favor and keep it to yourself.  If you're right, I'd prefer you leave; but if you're going to stay and read, please keep the secret—you've got an orchestra seat to very personal parts of my life.  If you're wrong, it'll just ruin the fantasy for you.

P.P.S.  (as I type this) my profile photo is Michael Caine from the movie Second Hand Lions.  I chose it because I like the character and the movie: read more into it at your peril because trust me, there is nothing more to it.  I'll be changing it as the mood strikes me.