More Monday Madness, Nicknames, et ma famille.

I've been tagged with yet another nickname.

I've been sick ever since I got back from Mexico (two weeks ago today). Apart from being nearly deaf thanks to an ear infection, I also have a nagging cough from a chest cold. Add in the fact that I already have diminished lung capacity (thanks to a bout of pneumonia as a kid) and it means CJ turns purple a lot.

A fact that wasn't lost on my pal Fry.

While wandering around Safeway after our weekly Monday night get-together at Tavern United (no plates were thrown this evening!), I had another coughing fit. Of course, being the gentleman I am, I put my hand to my mouth while coughing up my lungs.

"Still got that cough, eh?" asked Fry.

I was able to wheeze out a "Yup" between coughs.

"Shitty." he said, "But you know you're not supposed to put your hand to your mouth anymore, right?"

"Huh?", I exclaimed, "I'm not?"

"No," he explained, "You've gotta use your sleeve, like this..."

He demonstrated by burying his face in the crook of his right arm... around the elbow.

"Fuck that!", I retorted, "I've been covering my mouth with my hand while coughing since I was little, and I ain't gonna stop now because some socialist egghead health nut says I gotta!"

(Remember, I've had a few Guinness at this point)

"It's so you don't spread your germs," he explained, a tad annoyed, "You're in a supermarket. How many things have you touched since you stopped coughing?"

"As many as I could," I answered, "but I was going so fast I lost count. Why?"

"How many..." he started, then said, "Oh fuck, I don't know why I bother..." and walked further up the aisle.

Of course, unbeknownst to Fry, I always have a small bottle of Purell hand-sanitizer with me when I'm sick, and clean my hands religiously after every coughing fit... but hey, I gotta play my part!

I caught up with Fry and said, "Yeah, just call me Typhoid Wheeler!"

Fry grinned. "It does have a ring to it", he laughed, "But I think Plague Rat Wheeler suits you better!"

So, now I'm forever branded as Plague Rat. That makes, er, seven or eight nicknames I'm stuck with...

Meh, I'll always be (a) Conceited Jerk.


Acting up in supermarkets and shopping areas is a longstanding tradition with Fry, myself, and our long-lost pal Slam - has been since our early teenage years. Nothing rowdy or disruptive mind you, just a bit of verbal fun now and again to remind ourselves that - hey - we're only on this planet for a short while, and if you can't act like an ass in public there ain't no point in living. And if the manager of Superstore's Real Canadian Wholesale Club shows she's an uncultured Philistine by interrupting your rendition of the 1812 Overture (thumping a Rubbermaid tote to simulate the cannons), take your business elsewhere. I mean, it's not like you can't buy that flat of Dr. Pepper, 24-pack of Pizza Pops, "Crew Size" box of Cap'n Crunch, and "Institutional-size"(their words) can of Chef Boy-Ar-Dee Mini Ravioli elsewhere in town...


Speaking of living, ol' Plague Rat here had better make an appointment with the doctor so I can stop this infernal coughing and regain some of my hearing... and before I spread my cold to half the bloody city. Incidentally, if you take the #77 Polo Park bus in the mornings, between Garden City and Polo Park during the hours of 7 and 8am, you may want to consider alternate transportation ;)


Speaking of long lost, my cousin Kaylynne in Quebec found me via my Facebook page!

Her father, my uncle Ken, was the one responsible for getting me interested in computers waaaaaay back in the early 80s. I only know Kaylynne (and her sister Karolynne) through photographs, so here's hoping I can learn a bit more via email, Facebook, and her blog (which is pretty funny). I've linked to her blog on my sidebar if you're so inclined (and you can read French).

Wow. I can't believe how much my French skills have deteriorated over the years. I always did well in French at school (93% in French 300 in Grade 12) and "got by" when speaking to my French-Canadian girlfriend and her family back in my late teens, but I guess when you don't use those language skills for nearly twenty years...

So, I've made it my mission to regain my lost French skills. It shouldn't be too hard, as I already have a basic understanding of the language - just gotta brush up on both the "Parisien" French I learned in school as well as the "Quebecois" French I picked up from my ex's family. It'll also come in handy when I head over to Europe next year (assuming, of course, I don't head over to South Africa for the World Cup).

Speaking of vacations, I'm currently going through my digital photos of my trip to Puerto Vallarta as well as the journal I kept on my TRS-80 Model 100, and will likely post a few mildly amusing stories in the next couple of days or so.


Anyhow, I'm off to spread more germs.

See you next time,


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