Friday, April 18, 2014

So I'm doing the whole 'wear a dress for charity' thing again

Three years ago in March I was at a bar in North Tonawanda with Heather when I got a message asking me if I'd dress in drag for a charity event. Mildly unnerved, I shared it with her and asked her what she thought about it.

For all intents and purposes, we had just started dating and she liked to embarrass me at the time (you should see the things she used to write on my Facebook when I left my phone unguarded), so she encouraged me to do it. After checking with the morality police at work, I agreed — somewhat reluctantly.

Three years later, I'm signed up again to be part of the Peaches & Creme Fashion Show, a charity event benefitting Relay for Life. This will be my fourth time in drag — well eighth, really if you count the fittings that come about a week before the show.

You see, all us guys go to Maurices, the main sponsor of the event, to pick out a ... wardrobe? ... costume? ... Um, I guess we'll just say "dress." We also get to pick out some accessories like jewelry and scarfs and whatnot. Then the night of the show, we put them on. Maybe some nail polish. Maybe a wig. Whatever makes us pretty.

I mentioned this is for charity, right?

We model our dresses for the crowd at the Palace Theatre and have a lot of fun while doing it. There's also a talent contest which I have heretofore avoided but am considering doing this year if my favorite Lockport bartender (Simon Chavers from the Pleasant Valley Tavern) will join me in making a fool of myself. He's signed on as a "model," but hasn't fully committed to the talent part yet.

Anyway, it's coming up on May 10 and it's going to be a lot of fun. I have tickets for sale for $10 each if you'd like to come out and see me in drag in person. (If you just want to see a picture I'm top left in the photo above ... and there's a few shots on my Facebook page, too.)

So ... yeah ... that.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

How 4/10th of a mile in a Timkey Cab cost me $8

Heather talks with Lockport Economic Development Director
Chuck Bell and his wife, Katie at Saturday's Niagara Wine & 
Beer Tasting Fest. This conversation lasted longer than the 
Timkey Limousine $16 cab ride to the Kenan Arena. 
I'm not usually one to publicly bash or berate local businesses. Today is different. And the business deserves it.

I'd been looking forward to the Niagara Wine & Beer Tasting Festival at the Kenan Center for weeks now. I bought our tickets early online. Planned out what to wear. And carefully constructed a timeline that would allow Heather and I to have as much alcohol in our allotted four hours as possible.

At $25 a ticket and a total of 23 wineries and breweries to sample, it was really a great deal. And I was pretty sure we were going to get legally intoxicated and then some. So ... we decided to do the responsible thing and take a cab.

Around 4 p.m., I called Timkey Limousine and asked for a cab to pick me up at my home at 5. The woman who answered the phone told me the best she could do for me was 5:30 or quarter to 6. There were a lot of people getting cab rides to the Kenan Center, she said.

Around 5:15, a driver pulls into my driveway and honks his horn. I went out and told him he was early. I said I was told 5:30 or quarter to 6 and had adjusted my schedule accordingly. He said he'd go get another route and come back to take us to the Kenan Center, which he did.

I give you this background to illustrate the fact that the cab company was both busy and accommodating.

Heather and I jumped into the cab en route to the Kenan Center and I told the driver that we had to make a slight detour on the way. I needed cash and the M&T bank on the corner of Pine and Genesee was practically on the way. By practically on the way, I mean it was a few blocks out of the way. In all, it added 4/10ths of a mile to our trip.

The driver warned me that it would cost me an extra $3, which seemed silly to me, but whatever. My $8 1.1-mile cab ride just became an $11 1.5-mile cab ride. Except that when we got to the bank, he informed me that the woman on the other end of the phone told him that it wasn't an extra $3. It was an extra $8. Because it wasn't a stop along the way, but rather a detour out of the way. In other words, it was a $16 1.5-mile cab ride. That's more than $1 per 10th of a mile.

Timkey Limousine charges $8 for anywhere in the city to anywhere else in the city. From the city to the town or vice versa, it's $9. So a trip from the Wastewater Treatment Plant on West Jackson Street to Skateland on Lincoln Avenue (5.8 miles) will cost you $8. But my mile and a half trip was $16 - $20 after the tip.

Now, should I have gone to the ATM and gotten cash earlier? I guess. Except ... no. It's complete bullshit. And someone has to call them on it.

I've known Bill Timkey for years. I've always thought him a decent human being. He's been very helpful for the city of Lockport over the years. But $8 for a 4/10th-mile "detour" is wrong. Next time, I'll find another cab company.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Sometimes I like to sleep

I know that a lot of people like to sleep a lot of the time. Some people, however, only like to sleep some of the time. I fall in the latter category.

I have a friend out of state who would probably make sleep a career if she could get sponsors. She genuinely gets excited about going to sleep.

Me? Not so much. I feel like the hours spent sleeping are completely wasted. I can't read. I can't watch TV. I can't work. I can't talk to people. I can't go shopping or have a beer. I can't do anything while I'm sleeping except ... well ... sleep.

As such, I don't devote much time to it. I get an average of 4-5 hours of sleep per night. Well, technically morning. I usually go to bed somewhere between 4 and 5 a.m. and wake up somewhere between 9 and 10 a.m. Occasionally, I go to sleep as early as 2 a.m. Once in a while I sleep as late as noon. A couple weeks ago, I actually slept until about 2:30 in the afternoon, but that's an anomaly - a very rare occurrence.

I understand that my body *needs* sleep. I just don't like it. That said, when it's time to sleep, it's time to sleep.

Being a "night owl" who doesn't get much sleep, my friends, family and colleagues all pretty much text and call whenever they damn well please. I don't have a problem with this. I'm probably awake anyway.

For example, I got a distressed text message from a friend of mine last night at 1:58 a.m. Wide awake, I responded at 1:59 a.m. and hopefully made her feel better than she did to start out the night. We chatted for a bit but she was tired. I told her to call me at any point in the night if she needed to talk. Had she called, I would have answered.

Based on the missed text message I got at 4:21 a.m., I'm assuming I fell asleep sometime between 3 and 4. That's early for me but not horribly out of character. The text message I got at 6:17 a.m., however, woke me up and resulted in a conversation that went on for about 38 minutes. It took me about another half an hour to an hour to fall back asleep.

It was the second night in a row that a text message woke me up. The night before it was at 3:51 a.m. Two hours and 14 minutes later that conversation ended and I went back to sleep.

I've always said that if a text message wakes me up, I probably wasn't really sleeping to begin with. And I like to be reachable. I have a lot of friends who are at a point in their life where they need an ear. I like to be there for them.

So if you need me, text me. Or call. But if you just read something funny on collegehumor.com and you want to share it, I give you the chart below as to when I'm likely to be awake and when I'm not. Try to stick to when the likelihood of my being awake is 80 percent or higher, please.

Time ---- likelihood I'm awake
12 a.m. - 99 percent
1 a.m.   - 99 percent
2 a.m.   - 90 percent
3 a.m.   - 80 percent
4 a.m.   - 50 percent
5 a.m.   - 30 percent
6 a.m.   - 5 percent
7 a.m.   - 5 percent
8 a.m.   - 5 percent
9 a.m.   - 30 percent
10 a.m. - 80 percent
11 a.m. - 90 percent
12 p.m. - 99 percent
1 p.m.   - 99 percent
2 p.m.   - 99 percent
3 p.m.   - 100 percent
4 p.m.   - 100 percent
5 p.m.   - 100 percent
6 p.m.   - 100 percent
7 p.m.   - 100 percent
8 p.m.   - 100 percent
9 p.m.   - 100 percent
10 p.m. - 100 percent
11 p.m. - 99.99 percent

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Something new and different

So apparently I have just too much time on my hands.

See, myself and two friends — +George Root and +Craig Bacon — decided we should start a writing troupe, if you will. We get together once a week and work on some grand projects.

BUT ... once a week just wasn't cutting it. So we started what I have referred to as a "round robin" writing project. One of us starts a short story. Then another adds to it. And then the third adds more. Back to #1, #2, #3 again. And wrapping up with the person who started the story.

We've finished our first one and offer it up for your perusal here.

The fun thing is the writer after you can follow your train of thought or completely derail it. You might think you know where the story is going, but get back something that you never expected. That happened with this first piece.

I hope you enjoy this. You'll see more soon. Very soon.

- Scott

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

I should have avoided Facebook

The only thing worse than the sunny-day patriotism on my Facebook and Twitter feeds is the open use of a national tragedy to score political points.

How dare some people use the death of thousands of Americans as an excuse or reason to sound off on matters completely unrelated.

Look. I get it. You hate Obama. And Muslims. And anyone else who doesn't look, talk, act and dress like you.

That's no reason to make an ass out of yourself. You're embarrassing yourself and your country. And in short, you're why the world hates us.