Thursday, March 27, 2008

Have You Seen a Funny Lately?

What's the funniest thing you ever saw?

I remember the time I was stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic, creeping forward by the inch. I noticed a guy in the next lane whiz by me at 3 MPH, and he was laughing. So was the next guy. Then I happened to glance in my rearview mirror and saw why. A very professional-looking man in a business suit and driving a Beamer was directly behind me. He had a hand puppet that looked like a dog. This "dog" was barking at cars.

I burst out laughing. The "dog" saw me laughing and barked at me. I laughed harder. The dog stuck his head out the driver's side window and barked at a passing car. The driver pulled the dog back in with his collar, so then the dog scrunched up his face and pouted when the man shook his finger at him. Then the dog saw me continuing to watch him through my rearview mirror, so he crept below the dashboard and then slowly peered over the top in a peek-a-boo way. I laughed. He slipped below the dash again, then popped up quickly. Once more I laughed, and he ducked below the dash and then s l o w l y rose up so that all I could see was the top of his head and his eyes. He played peek-a-boo for a while, then rested his chin on the dashboard and did what was obviously an exaggerated sigh.

During the hour I was stuck in traffic, I had a blast watching this puppet dog perform his antics. Barking at passing cars was hilarious, especially as his eyes locked on like radar and he continued to bark as the car passed. You could see his head swivel and his mouth going. It was just too funny.

When our lane finally started moving again, I waved goodbye to the puppet dog, and he bounced around in his car barking excitedly. I've always wondered about that guy in the Beamer. Why did he happen to have a hand-puppet in his car? Did he have any idea how much I enjoyed his performance?

That's not the funniest thing I've ever seen, but it ranks right up there with the best. Have you ever encountered something similar? Or have you ever seen something that struck you as particularly funny? Or did you do something that was funny? Do tell! We need more humor in our lives!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Have You Eaten a Cockroach Today?

I did. Well, it wasn't a cockroach, but an ant. Every spring I get this hugely annoying invasion of ants. I hate waking up to find one crawling on me. I sit at my desk and they race across my keyboard or up my arm. I lean down to pick up a shoe and one falls out of my hair. I go to dry my face with a towel and find an ant staring insolently at me.

Well, I've been working at my desk all day, nursing my daily cup of coffee. Just one cup. No more. I can sip on a cup all day. So I reached over and took a couple swallows from the dregs of the mug, and something bumped my lip. I looked down. There's a drowned ant on the rim. A very disgusting drowned ant that looks like he's been there a long time.

I am NOT amused. I have little ant bait stations all over the house and they ignore them. They're supposed to eat from them, then go back to their nest and tell their buddies, who also eat from the bait station. Each time they return to the nest, they infect the nest with the bait. The theory is that eventually the whole nest gets poisoned from the bait and dies.

So far, the ants are winning. I even Googled ants, to find other methods of eradicating them. One popular and totally useless piece of advice on all the sites is to follow the ant to its nest. HAVE YOU EVER TRIED TO FOLLOW AN ANT??? I spent 20 minutes hovering discreetly in the background, following an ant that rambled all over my kitchen counter, then the floor, then here and there, but never to its nest. So I picked another ant and followed it. After 15 minutes, I got tired of going nowhere.

We won't even talk about the rats that are eating me out of provisions in the barn. They go through rat poison like it was candy, and when I replace the little empty trays of poison with new stuff, they can't wait to get into it. I tell you, it's downright scary. I think they must be a strain of uber rat. I fully expect them to be waiting at the barn door one day, hands on hips, tapping their feet impatiently, chastising me for letting the bait stations go empty.

What about you? Have you ever inadvertently eaten a bug? What did it taste like? I accidentally ate a ladybug once. It tasted like green grass.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

My First Photoshop Job

Happy me. I just completed my first job using Photoshop. I designed a bookmark for a client whose book is coming out soon, and the printer wanted a 1/8" bleed on all sides, to allow for slight trimming errors. In essence, a bleed is when you extend the margins of the bookmark beyond the trim area. That way, if the paper twists just a little, as often happens when cutting through a thick stack, you don't end up with a weird, cockeyed white border on one side.

This may not sound like a big deal, but it's pretty standard in the printing industry to require a minimum 1/8" bleed. And it is harder to do than you think. You can't just enlarge a bookmark and then tell them to trim it down, because enlarging it brings the text too close to the trim line and letters may be cut off.

So I'm a happy camper today. Not only did I come up with a spiffy bookmark, I also came up with a great (IMHO) book blurb. If I could figure out how to isolate the bookmark as a JPEG, I'd post it here, but I can't figure out how to do that. Do you collect bookmarks? Do you use them? Or do you turn down a page, like I do?