The Kissing Game: My First Kiss

The other day, my love gave me another compliment on my ability to kiss. I feel I can be puffy chest, loud and proud, as this is not the first time I’ve heard this. I’m pretty good at the Kissing Game: My First Kiss.

Not gonna lie, I love the act of the kiss. In fact the first kiss with someone, to me, is the most intoxicating. There’s no replacing the adrenaline coursing through my veins, my heart pounding in my chest that it threatens to escape through my ribs, and then… contact.

MMMM, MMM, good!

Granted I’ve encountered a kiss from a girl that was … let’s just say, not as enjoyable as others, but still fun. I’m sure the same could be said about my kisses, but after the compliments I’m gonna be so bold as to state that it’s one of my anchor points of my dating game.

While practice makes progress, I like to think passion for a skill is a game-changer. As I said, I love kissing. It’s so intimate, sensual, and intoxicating, that I crave it. I breathe in the girl’s perfume, feel her embrace, and then her soft lips.

So I thought about my first kiss. And I certainly wasn’t prepared for it, either!

If memory serves me correctly, I was in the 6th grade. And it was the summer of going into the 7th grade. My gal pal, Kristine Staton-Santiago nee Albertson, had recently lost her mom to cancer which coincidentally my mother’s good friend. She had lamented she hadn’t had Filipino food since she passed. And somewhat jealous of my easy access to said food. My heart felt a pang of guilt knowing that she was right.

One afternoon I had the following conversation with my mother.

Los: “Hey Momma, can you please make me some Filipino food?”
Mom: “What’s matter, you? You hungry? Need snack?”
Los: “No, Momma. Kristine’s mom is gone, and she said she was missing her and her food. I thought it would be nice to cook her up some food then I would bike it over to her house.” 
Mom: “That’s very sweet of you, Caloy. How about this? How about you help me makes this food and it’ll be that much more of a gift?”
Los: “Ok, sounds great.”

We made chicken adobo, pancit, and lumpia. We packaged it up, and loaded it up on my 10-speed bike. Then I biked it to Kristine’s house, unannounced. First, she was pleasantly shocked by the visit, let alone with the gift of food.

She invited me into the house while helping carry the food in. She was so confused.

K: “Los, did I ask for this (in a curious tone, not spiteful)?”
L: “No, but I felt bad. I have my mom still, so I can have it anytime I want. And I figured you would like some Flip food.”
K: “Wait. You’re not staying to help me with it?”
L: “No, I’ll go home now.” I’m feeling uber awkward right about now. All I wanted to do was escape.

I know she wanted me to stay, but it wasn’t gonna happen. Speaking of “gonna happen”, I wasn’t expecting what happened next! She opened the door, but then stood in my way of exiting. She smiled, and leaned to kiss me, and hug me.

I was so damn stunned I was speechless. She laughed a little while she said, “You’ve never been kissed, have you?”

I mumbled, “I have now. I’ll be going home now.”

The whole experience kept replaying in my head while biking home. The more I thought about it, the more I liked it. Usually on the first couple dates with a girl, I am somewhat distracted by the thought of our first kiss.

Here are 7 mistakes that are made on your first kiss with someone (or someone new) by Cheyenne at – they are true to their word and hilarious to boot. Click here to watch the video. It makes me wonder, though …

  • Do you remember your first kiss? Did you like it?
  • Do you like the first kiss of someone new?
  • Are you good kisser? 

Lemme know, Seattle and Spaceship Earth, by commenting below. As always, be good like you should, and if you can’t be good, be good at what you do!

Mic drop *bOoM*
‘los; out

I’m Older Than I Think

Recently, I was promoted at work to Manager. I was anticipating that move. What I wasn’t anticipating was the move to Nights Manager for my warehouse. The crew I work with is easily 15-20 years younger than I am.

Again, I knew that once I was assigned the crew.

The other day I had an epiphany while interacting with a crew member … I’m older than I think.

Ever since I could remember I have been taught to seek out teachers, mentors, coaches, and more to glean information from them while they are in my orbit. I also sought out older folks (family members or not) because they are living history, they literally experienced some of the events that I wanted to know about.

“Experience is the best teacher, and the worst experiences teach the best lessons.”

― Jordan Peterson

I would work side by side with my parents to learn all they have to share about being an adult, life, and some of the mysteries they’ve solved. I realized quickly that once they are gone, that information and knowledge leaves with them.

I discovered I was always in the mode of learning, because I knew I couldn’t be perfect but I could strive for it.

However, one day I would be the one to be sought out for sage advice, answers to questions about procedures, and so much more.

One day I would be more of the teacher, than a student. My significant other asked that I accompany her son for driving lessons. I accepted the invite. As I sat in the passenger seat, I observed, and pointed out lessons I’ve gathered up over the 30 years I’ve been driving.

I suddenly caught my breathe. Three decades of operating a motor vehicle! I’ve been driving longer than this kid’s been alive. YEESH. I’m older than I think.

That day recently passed. You see, I was gifted an analog watch from my significant other. It’s inscribed on the back of the watch with a sweet message. The face of the watch doesn’t have numbers.

A younger female on my work crew rolled up to me to ask a question, I peered down at my watch to assess.

Her: You can tell the time on your watch?

Me: Yes. It’s an analog watch, I’ve been taught. Can you?

Her: It doesn’t even have numbers on it. What are those hash marks anyways?

Me: I mentally sighed. I’m older than I think. Those heavier hash marks indicate the quarter of an hour – 3, 6, 9, and 12. Furthermore, the other marks are 5 minute intervals, and lastly, the minute marks are the faintest. You honestly can’t tell me the time of day it is from my watch?

Her: No. (and she walked off)

I paused in disbelief. Rarely does anyone uses this technology, therefore it’s not often taught. I was really gonna but the shine on with the 24-hour clock because our work break aid is based on the 24-hour clock system otherwise known as ‘military time’.

I decided against it, and walked on.

“Knowledge is power”

Francis Bacon, from his Meditationes Sacrae 

Now that I’ve advance into my late 40’s, I’m adjusting to my newer role as a mentor, coach, teacher, and more. I’m older than I think, and that’s ok.

I’ve noticed that younger folks are seeking my sage advice, or my answers, or guidance on various subjects.

I usually my answer with, “It’s been my experience …” because as noted before, experience is the best teacher.

‘los; out

Sounders ‘Til I Die | The Story of Soccer, Strawberries, and Keg Stands

To truly appreciate this story you’ll have to know the background of how I became a Sounders fan, and my first away match.

This all started 12 years ago … You see my lil’ sister, Charrina Bayne, aka West Coast Playa [WCP], shared with me a story how she was incredibly screwed out of season tickets from an ex-boyfriend. Hence another reason he’s an “EX”. So as her big brother, I felt helpless to witness my sister in such pain. She loves soccer! The wheels of thought in my head got turning.

Just how much are season tickets for the Seattle Sounders FC? How the hell do you buy something like that anyways?

I called the Sounders front office naturally. I spoke to a representative. After several conversations, and contemplation, I was the proud owner of two season tickets to the 2010 Sounders season. My intention was to present to my lil’ sister her gift. Two season tickets for a year, so she can always have a wingman / wingman / co-worker, always someone next to her on her soccer adventures. This was her birthday gift, Christmas gift, and any other thoughtful gift for the entire year!

They even let her choose her seats.

So, they released the schedule in December I think. I presented her my gift. She was ECS-tatic! Then she looked at me emphatically, “Ever been to a soccer match, ‘los?”

“Nope, just a ‘hawks fan,” I answer flatly.

“Would come with me to my first match, and basically all the other matches?” she asks me.

Thinking, whicka-what? “Excuse me? That was my gift from me to you. I had no intention of attending any of those soccer matches.”

“Right. I understand that. But I can’t truly enjoy any of them unless my partner in crime is with me. ‘sides, you’re my big brother, I love you and I have the best times with you.”

Thinking, well hell! That didn’t do go I thought it would. “Oh, why not? What’s the worst can happen?”

Opening Kick, March 2010

Clad in Sounders FC gear, armed with my ticket, and WCP being my guide to match day, we arrived. She coached me thoroughly about the fun that is about to be had. I had no idea what was in store for me.

During the pre-match ceremonies, I pointed down to a crowd and section of people. “WCP, who’s that?”

“Oh! Them? That’s the ECS. The Emerald City Supporters. It’s the Sounders fanclub.”

“You mean, as in soccer hooligans?”

“Not exactly, but that’s close enough. They sing, wave flags, and truly support and love the Sounders,” she smiles. “I’m a member and cardholder.”

2013, three years later, after hella matches, I’m a full-fledged Sounders fan and soccer hooligan. Even though I don’t sit with the ECS, I don’t just sing it, but I BRING IT for every match, for every minute – not just the 90 minutes of match play either! Then again… when do I not?

One innocuous day, WCP asks as she stands at the threshold of my bedroom door, “Hey, ‘los. What are you doing on July 6th? Got any plans?”

Amazingly at the time she asked, I didn’t. “Not a damn thing. Why do you ask?” as I sit at my computer desk.

“Got an email from the ECS about the Vancouver away match. Bus ticket and match ticket is 85 bones each. Wanna rock that up?”

“HELLS TO THE YEAH!” Honestly, all I heard was an international soccer match (Bucket List item) that involved a chauffeur / designated driver and it’s the Sounders.

“Think Dad wants to rock up too?” she explores.

“Of course,” I reply.

July 6, 2013.

Match day, Away Match versus Vancouver Whitecaps. Now WCP thoroughly coached me for weeks about expectations, etc. She’s really amp’d about this adventure, I can tell.

Once again, clad in Sounders gear, we arrived to Northgate Park and Ride hella early. We posted up at the Five Guys Burgers knowing that we needed to nosh on something for this EPIC bus adventure we were about to embark on.

We walk over. Thinking now with two versions of myself on my shoulders… Angel Carlos says, “Ok. Now be a good boy. Don’t overindulge in drinking, be polite, be humble, and keep to you…”

The Devil Carlos strolls up to Angel Carlos, throat punches him and kicks him off. “Yeah right! Drink like a bastard, be loud and proud, chase after breezies, and I might think about keeping you from being injured, maimed, killed, mugged, or arrested!”


A smirk washes over my face, it’s a devilish grin my sister knows oh-too-well. WCP’s eyebrows furrow, “Lamp (her nickname for me, that’s even a longer story!), what are you thinking about?”

“Oh? Hm. Nothing,” I casually reply.

“Oh, fuck. We’re all in trouble, aren’t we?” WCP cries.

“If we’re lucky! Look at it this way, you only live once but if you do it right… that’s all you need, baby!” I punch the air for dramatic flare.

WCP sighs, “Famous last words.”

[Later. In the Park & Ride]

A couple of players roll up to me. “Hey, aren’t you the drunk guy that has seats behind us?”

I shrug, “Depends.”
The 2nd guy, “He sits in our row, jackass.”
I thrust out my hand, “I’m Carlos, by the way. Who are you two?”
“I’m Ben. This is ‘drew. Andrew that is.”

I have a good feeling I’ll be seeing these guys again in not in the same sobriety state. Dad, WCP, and I scan the parking lot.

We need to figure out which bus will have one of those kegs of beer to supplement the 6 pack we have of Fremont Summer Ale. We are giddy as school children as we board the Rosales #10 bus.

WCP and I think this is ironic [as in the song Isn’t It Ironic, not funny ha-ha] because we recently made a drinking game about Rosales, the soccer player, for home matches and whenever he hits the pitch [again, another story for later]

The bus starts rolling down the highway for a scant minutes when we realized ALL THE BUSES HAVE KEGS! Sweet mother of Jesus, we’re in trouble. Then the cooler of margarita mix. Hm. Let the drinking begin.

And then Jell-O shots. And food was passed out and shared with the riders.

Oy. More beer (No Equal) in my red Solo cup. I fill you up. Oh, and you need a shot of Jameson into that, sir. WTF, poured from a Cuervo bottle that’s crossed out with a Sharpie. Oh my god, this is hilarious. Cupcakes are given, then Salvadorian bites to nosh on.

I stammer, Where are we?

Lynnwood, ‘los.

Oh, you need some strawberry moonshine, ‘los. I do? Singing erupts! Pick me, pick me! I know the words and loud and proud too.

I’m packing a major buzz already. I can’t feel my face, or lips.

So, ‘los … wanna a strawberry that’s been soaking in moonshine foreverness. Why the f not? I’m in this deep right? Go EPIC or go home! Or alternatively, go EPIC, then go home. A maniacal laughter erupts out of me.

I peer over to WCP and Dad who are sitting together.

I mentally ask, Where are we? I survey the landscape and determine we’re outside of Marysville, yo.

Hm. We’re stopping… at a rest stop. There’s a mass exodus for the door. Is the son-of-a-bitch on fire?

I leave the bus, too. The ECS gathers it’s troops around the three kegs (one from each bus) They declare it’s time for keg stands!!

Well… I haven’t done one of those in my lifetime. Wonder how I sign up? I bet if I participate / assist with the first couple they’ll naturally assume I want to do the same.

It worked!

As I’m hanging upside down wondering if the five men it took to stabilize me, how am I gonna do this? F it. I’ll figure it out or die trying. I draw my brew, and more brew and more. Finally, I couldn’t hold myself anymore, plus drink more upside down.

I stand on my feet triumphantly. I raise my arms, WIN FOR ME! The crowd applauses the performance.

Sweet. Where’s Dad? Where’s WCP? Did anyone get photos of that epic behavior? I find Ben and Andrew amongst the crowd of drinking, singing, smoke bombs (is there a riot?) The bus captains start barking out to board the bus. CHURCH ON THE MOVE!!

I stumble onboard. It was time for a self-interview with my life-proof camera that I called Lumi. I didn’t realize that Devil Carlos had done this until the next day as I was downloading the videos and photos from the experience.

The ECS has managed to cattle car us drunk monkeys onto buses not only once, but twice. Our Rosales bus captain asked, no one left behind. Or if you aren’t here, raise your hand.” He grinned. He realized half-way that he didn’t know where he was going with that.

More singing
More drinking
More music

We’re at the border in a seemingly surprising amount of time. Happens when you’re having fun and not paying attention. The music stops, the drinking stops, the singing stops. Time to be serious!

[BC Place]

All the buses managed to clear customs just fine. We arrive at BC Place without incident. In fact, all of us entered BC Place without a hitch. I tip my cap to the ECS management. Good on you, ECS.

Then the match is finally here! We came to drink, we came to sing, whoa, whoa… Whitecaps score almost immediately. Shit. 1-0. C’mon Seattle!

[Beyond half time]

Whitecaps score again, 2-0. Doesn’t seem to diminish the spirit or the singing of the ECS.

Love these guys. I hope they realize there is a match going on. Dad, WCP and I do the same: we sing, we drink, we cheer. With keep digging mentality, we will show ECS and Vancouver we can rock this shit for more than just 90 minutes! We’re gonna do this the whole trip!

[End of the match – Sounders lose]

Kinda of bummer, but we trudge back onto the bus. After all that I described above, it’s no wonder I’m about to have a chunder shower (get sick) Mostly a migraine that threatens to rip my skull into two. GRRR! That’s really crunking up my high, yo. Then I get nauseated from the monster headache. BLAH! We get to the border quickly, I need air. The bus captains have a concerned look on their faces.

“Are you gonna be alright?”
“No,” I grunt flatly. Don’t think they were expecting that!
“Are you gonna be sick?”
“Yes.” I grab the bus garbage can and inch my way to the bus entrance. I realize the shitstorm that’ll happen if I depart the bus sooner than instructed but my body has different ideas.

I spy with my eye the bus driver Pam walking back. Shit. I’m gonna be aisle salmon in a hot second if I don’t return to my seat, which I did successfully. By some miracle or the work of my dearly departed mother, I made through Canadian Customs without so much as an eyebrow raise. Or maybe but I was shit-hammered (highest level of intoxication possible)

On the bus, an angel of mercy gave my lil’ sister some Advil as well as I. I passed out for a grip, then woke up because we were arriving at the Northgate P&R some 12 plus hours later.

If I wasn’t a Sounders FC fan or ECS fan before the trip, I definitely am now! The feeling of community, warmth and concern was outright, which I can say is something I’ve searching for quite some time.

Some ECS members that were on the bus reached out the next day to check in on good old Carlos, to see if I was aiight. I was thankfully.

One ECS post was, “If you thought that was epic, then I guess we’ll be seeing you on the Portland bus to chop some Timbers huh?”

Eternally grateful,
Carlos Bayne

Night Moves: Juneteenth

I am still trying to wrap my head around the weekend’s events at my place of employment. Two of my team mates, in addition to myself, were selected as Department Managers.

Tim C, Food Court Manager; Alex L, Foods Manager; and yours truly, Merchant Nights Manager.

June 17, 2022 – On Friday, I celebrated 20 years of continuous employment at Costco. I was given a card of acknowledgment by my General Manager. I graciously received it and paused. I thought, it’s really been two decades already?

I won’t drone on about my humble beginnings, but lock my eyes forward on this new task.

Speaking of humility, I’m grateful to have the continued support of my warehouse. In a watershed moment of my life in 2015, I was given some career advice by two men that I consider my mentors.

“Carlos, if you don’t have a team that supports your decision, that’s actively cheering for it, then you won’t be successful.”

~ Chris Hendrix, and Peter Gruening

I was humbled over the weekend as the announcement was made on Saturday morning. The team is excited about my new role within the walls of the warehouse. I was congratulated by many persons, which I thanked each person as they did.

Management is excited about my new role, as well. I have the resources, and support to make this successful.

My start date is tonight, June 20, 2022.

Since Juneteenth falls on Sunday (6/19), the federal government observes it today. What is that exactly, you ask?

Juneteenth is a federal holiday in the United States commemorating the emancipation of enslavedAfrican Americans. Juneteenth marks the anniversary of the announcement of General Order No. 3 by Union Army general Gordon Granger on June 19, 1865, proclaiming freedom for enslaved people in Texas.[7] Originating in Galveston, the holiday has since been celebrated annually on June 19 in various parts of the United States, often broadly celebrating African-American culture. The day was first recognized as a federal holiday in June 2021, when PresidentJoe Biden signed the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act into law.[8][9] The Juneteenth flag is a symbol of the Juneteenth holiday.

Juneteenth Flag

I’m grateful for the sacrifices done before me so that I have the freedoms I enjoy today, and I’m relieved that the enslaved folks were freed 157 years ago.

It’s amazing what you can accomplish if you’re free to do whatever you set out to do.

‘los; out

What’s That Smell: Call A Mechanic

One aspect of car ownership is repairs and fixes – no one really likes them because they tend to be expensive, and you couldn’t do the work yourself if you wanted to.

Most people, at least Americans, don’t want to do much more than gas and go with the occasional oil change thrown in.  Especially when I was young and brash with my brand new car, a 1997 Honda Civic. When I ask what’s that smell, I usually don’t call first.

The following is the funniest car service call I’ve had about any vehicle I’ve owned and/or operated.

What’s That Smell?

What’s That Smell: Call A Mechanic

Prior to the turn of the century, I prided myself on my ability to do my oil changes, and other regular maintenance tasks. There was one however, that I simply couldn’t figure out.

One summer day, I got a whiff of fuel, and thought, What’s that smell: call a mechanic – before it’s too late. I loved and cared for my car because this was the first one that was brand new, no one owned it and I’m making payments towards it! I was really #adulting at this point!

For weeks I’d been smelling this gasoline like smell every time I accelerated or braked. I thought for a hot-second it was a fuel line leak or the exhaust line. I crawled under, over, and scoured the engine bay. I put a piece of cardboard underneath it to catch the fluid drops – nothing! I gave up asking what’s that smell: call a mechanic. I was convinced it was a type of repair that would be covered by warranty so I call the Honda dealership from which I bought the vehicle.

I briefly described my issue over the phone with as much technical data and terms. I knew they wouldn’t guarantee anything over the phone, but had appointments open so we agreed on a date and hung up the phone.

A few hours later  after dropping off my car at the Lynnwood Honda, I received the courtesy phone call.

“Mr. Bayne?” the caller asks.
“Yes, it’s me. Did you isolate the issue?” I pressed.
“Oh, yes. We did. Do you want the good news first or bad news?”
I paused, “Bad news so the good news can help soothe it.”
The tech continued, “Ok, then. Mr Bayne were you aware that you had a bottle of fuel injector cleaner in your trunk?”
I literally had nothing more than and maybe one of item. “Yes, why?”
“Bad news is that it’s leaking which would explain why you only smelled it when you were on the gas or brake. It was toss it around the trunk as it moved around on the carpet.”
I frowned. “Ok, what’s the good news then?”
“The good news is that it’ll only cost one-hour of labor of $85 plus tax, of course.”
“Of course,” I repeated. “I’ll be there soon,” as I clicked the phone dead without so much as waiting for the usual salutations.

I literally paid someone to look into my trunk. I might as well have asked where do the blinker fluid go …

Have you had a funny and/or shareable car problem story? Wanna post it below in the comments? Let me know!

Mic drop *bOoM*
‘los; out

Godzilla Lives

I have a story about an iguana that became Godzilla … in my shared apartment.

I was playing NASCAR ’98 in 1998 on the Nintendo Play Station that was purchased by my girlfriend at the time. She had two cats and two iguanas. I felt it was Animal Planet up in there!

My then-girlfriend entered into the living room to interrupt my game play.

She was crying as she said, “Edward is dead.”

That’s the name of one of her iguanas. After pausing the video game, “Wait. What? How?”

She explains that while cleaning their separate tanks, she accidentally switched the iguanas. She put Francis in Edward’s tank and vice versa. Edward was frustrated so he busted out. He wandered out to the cold bathroom floor. She nudged him but he didn’t react so she assumed he’s dead, because being a cold-blooded animal and died of lack of heat.

Godzilla Lives

“He’s not dead,” I grumbled in response.

I then located some leather gloves to pick up the carcass. I searched the 2nd bathroom for Edward’s body. It was behind the toilet tank so basically the most inconvenient place to reach.

I sighed with disbelief.

I knelt down to be closer. My outstretched trembled as it neared his hindquarters. I muttered under my breath, “YOU bastard. I resent you for making me do this.”

As my hand was one millimeter away, Edward’s eyes popped open. Then he hissed at me as he thrashed around. I yelped like a teenage girl discovering a spider. I raced out of the bathroom as he bolted after me to give chase.

I was screaming down the hallway, “Godzilla! GODZILLA LIVES!”

I jumped up on the couch, clad in shorts, and T-shirt, and leather gloves, seconds before Edward crashed against it. He hissed again, as I pointed and screamed at the killer iguana. What the fuck?

Then the girlfriend casually scoops up Edward like a kitten with comforting words, “Oh my, so glad you’re not dead.”

She wanders down the hall to put him back into his tank.

“Dead, my ass,” as I stepped down from the couch and removing the gloves. “Told ya, he was alive.”

‘los; out

2022 What’s The Difference: Memorial Day and Veteran’s Day?

A few years ago, there was a viral Facebook post about a woman getting a haircut before Memorial Day weekend. She had lost her husband in a Navy helicopter crash months prior. He died on deployment, never having met their youngest son. So, when the smiling receptionist wished her a “Happy Memorial Day” after she had buried her spouse, the words cut extra deep.

Before you tag every veteran and service member on Facebook and wish them a Happy Memorial Day, remember that, in this community, Memorial Day means something much, much bigger than the start of summer. The day feels fraught with memories of those we’ve lost, mixed with gratitude for the times we’ve had.

While it is true that every day is Memorial Day for the families of the fallen, they aren’t asking that you stay inside and wallow.

But we do owe it to them to pause. Reflect. Remember. Honor.

Gold Star wife Krista Simpson Anderson, who lost her husband, Army Staff Sgt. Michael Harrison Simpson, in Afghanistan in 2013, said, “I get upset when people scold others for enjoying the weekend or having BBQs. What do you think our service members did before they died? Mike sure did enjoy his family and friends. What better way to honor them than to be surrounded by family and friends living. But we are also so grateful for your pause and reflection as you celebrate our heroes and the lives that they lived.”

Memorial Day and Veterans Day are different holidays with unique purposes — and unique ways to honor each.

How to Honor Veterans Day

Veterans Day is the day to tag all your people, posting photos with your brother in uniform or the selfie with your bestie before he or she deployed. Veterans Day celebrates the living who served our country. Offer veterans a discount at your business. Call your favorite vet on the phone and thank him or her for their service. Attend a parade. Celebrate a veteran.

How to Honor Memorial Day

Memorial Day is about remembering and honoring every single man and woman who has died for our freedoms — men and women who were mommies and daddies, sons and daughters, husbands and wives, brothers and sisters, patriots, incredible Americans and really, really great friends.

You want to honor and celebrate patriotism and the military this Memorial Day? Then you have to honor the complicated feelings surrounding it. Express your knowledge that this day is about remembrance.

Attend a memorial service at a national cemetery. Run or walk a mile to benefit the non-profit Krista Anderson started in memory of her husband, and then pledge your mile for wear blue: run to remember.

Talk to your kids about sacrifice, about service and about what this three-day weekend really means. Observe the National Moment of Remembrance at 3:00 p.m. Monday with a minute of silence.

And then, like Krista said, live. Live because freedom isn’t free.


Two Bikini Baristas Go ‘Round The Outside …

I know you hummed a few bars of Enimem’s song, Without Me. If not, I’ll help you:

Two bikini baristas go ’round the outside / ’round the outside / ’round the outside /

Two bikini baristas go ’round the outside / ’round the outside / ’round the outside /

The following is how I inadvertently visited and patronized not one, but TWO bikini / lingerie espresso stands in the area in the same week in 2016 …

Feels Like The First Time

BEFORE you chide me, and judge me for the experience, please know I didn’t know anything about drive-up espresso stands like this. I heard about them, but never sought them out intentionally.

If memory serves me well, it was dark out, and definitely outside the scope of normal, operating business hours for Starbucks. Especially the Clearview, WA location, whether it was late at night or early in the morning, the only coffee stand I spied while traveling southbound Highway 9 was XO Espresso

My lizard brain guided my hands to turn in so we can have some fuel-injected caffeine.

I was not mentally prepared for the following. I stop the Sapphire Sled at the service window. My eyes land on the slender redhead standing on high heels, in thigh stockings, garter belt, thong underwear and a pink bra.

AH, CRAP, I mentally lamented. It’s one of THOSE stands, and that’s why it’s the only one open at this hour.

Barista: Well, hey there, handsome, what can I whip up for ya?

Me: I would love a 16 ounce, 3-shot Americano, please.

Barista: Sure thing, sugar. She turns around to prep the shots, and while she wait she managed to flap and/or claps her butt cheeks for me.

She, of course, bends at his hips towards me to present the coffee and collect payment for services rendered. I gave her more than the usual tip amount, er gratuity. And I drove away.

OOPS, I Did It Again …

Later that week I had an appointment with my realtor, Julie. We teamed up together to find me a house to buy, there were some houses she wanted me to see in the Bothell area. BY THE WAY, hit up 5 Star Home Group for all your real estate needs!

I was driving along eastbound Highway 522 scanning for espresso stands. I spotted one that I’ve passed by for years but never stopped: Beehive Espresso.

It’s brightly colored yellow stand, and it was a sunny day with my Sapphire Sled’s sunroof open, windows down, music up.

I thought, Why not, it’s inviting, and I like new experiences.

Two Bikini Baristas Go ‘Round The Outside

An El Camino was in front of me with a single, male driver with a beard that was being quite chatty with the unseen barista. I mentally grumbled, C’mon, man. Let’s move along while we’re young.

Eventually it was my turn, so I slowly rolled up to the service … DOOR? Yeah, it was a sliding glass door with the curtains drawn. The blonde barista in high heels again, a yellow string bikini moves back the curtain to greet me.

Barista: Hi honey, what can I do you for?

Me: AGAIN? Really, Los, I mentally lamented. She was a very pretty woman with a svelte body, and blonde – I feel a case of the yips welling up in me. I blurt out, a 16 ounce Americano, please.

OOPS, I did it again!

I’ve learned to scrutinize my coffee stand selections from then on.

‘los; out

Do You Love Raspberry Pi?

Everyone loves pie, but do you enjoy Raspberry Pi? Yeah, I didn’t think so…

Several years ago, a friend invited me to tag-along with her to her son’s S.E.A.M. Workshop (Science, English, Arts, Music) at his school.

One of the science stops was the Raspberry Pi presentation. I didn’t know what it was, or ever heard of it so that automatically piqued my interest! After listening a grip, and taking photos, I researched it further on the ye old Internet using my Goodigilence (yes, that’s an Urban Dictionary word)

Here’s what my research yielded.
The Raspberry Pi is a series of small single-board computers developed in the United Kingdom by the Raspberry Pi Foundation to promote the teaching of basic computer science in schools and in developing countries. The original model became far more popular than anticipated, selling outside of its target market for uses such as robotics. Peripherals (including keyboards, mice and cases) are not included with the Raspberry Pi. Some accessories however have been included in several official and unofficial bundles.

According to the Raspberry Pi Foundation, over 5 million Raspberry Pis have been sold before February 2015, making it the best-selling British computer. By the 9th of September 2016 they had sold 10 million.

As usual, this phenomenon reached across the pond to the United States and it’s schools. And then I reminded of a childhood toy that set me up for future success that initially HATED!

That’s right, y’all.

I absolutely hated a gift given to me. Well, at least initially. You see, it was my birthday so I was quite clear on what I wanted as a teenager (thinking on it I’m pretty sure I was 13 or 14 years old) I requested G.I. Joe Action Figures, LEGO® kits, and that was it.

I unwrapped one of my gifts from my Dad with great anticipation of one of those aforementioned toys. What I saw in front of me amongst the crumpled gift wrap was …

Do You Love Raspberry Pi?

160 In One Electronic Project Kit by Science Fair – are you kidding me?!

My Dad smiled while my face was red with anger.

“Why this, Dad?” I exploded. 
Dad composed himself, “Because Son, you’ll need to learn how electricity works sooner or later. Might else well be now with me around to guide you.”
“This is bullshit. Why can’t you be like every other Dad?”
“I’m the best Dad you’ll ever have,” he answered flatly.
I grumbled wryly, “You’re the only Dad I’ll ever have.”
“That’s true,” Dad retorted. He suggested, “Why don’t you try reading the instructions on one of the easy experiments, and go from there?”

I stormed into my bedroom that I shared with my little sister, toting this gift like an albatross on a ship to pout. My Dad let me cool off for a moment or two before entering the bedroom.

“Son,” he explained. “We live in a society that is dominated by electricity and the devices powered by it. You’re a very intelligent young man, and you’ll be grateful for this lesson later on in life. If you understand the fundamentals of electricity then you’ll know how to operate, fix, and maintain a majority of things. Trust me.” 

Fine,” I cry.

I resigned to the situation because there was no changing it by exchanging this gift at Toys R Us. I struggled mightily with the first couple of ‘projects’ because electricity is an absolute. Either it works or it doesn’t. Up to this point, I’ve been conditioned that while some items I used were not operating at full capacity, at least they were operating.

Eventually, I was able to complete all the easy projects, then progressed to the advanced, and whatnot. And yes, I did so on my own. No matter how many tantrums of frustrations I exhibited, my Dad refused to step in and complete it.

“Son, in life, you’ll discover that the only resource you’ll have is yourself. So, read the instructions again. Walk yourself through them carefully, and then you’ll have the confidence to tackle anything on your own. If you have questions of clarification, I’ll answer them but only to help you along the way.”

True to his word, he didn’t step in. And yes, I completed ALL 160 projects. Now you can trust me when I say I KNOW how electronic devices operate and the electricity works. Which brings me to my point … (I can hear you groaning now, “Finally! The point of my rambling”)

When my DJ gear doesn’t work, I know how to troubleshoot my own technical issue because of this toy that I hated from minute one, but learned to love it by minute done. Or when my car doesn’t work, or when a GFI I’m trying to wire in my home isn’t working, and so forth.

Once my eyes landed on the #RaspberryPi experiments in the classroom of Sky Valley Education Center, I was relieved that the future generations are trying to understand how to operate the machinery, and electronic devices around them that they use on a daily basis.

In fact, they were demonstrative of how they can even manipulate it / them to what they want it to do. The young man who explained his experiment to me was so proud, like I was when I finally conquered the 160 in One.

I remembered my Dad’s words after I completed the last one. “Congratulations, boy. I knew you could do it. You see, I started you with electricity because it’s unforgiving like life. Either it works or it doesn’t. I love you so much and know I won’t be around forever to fix all your problems. My love for you forces me to understand I have a short amount of time before you grow up into a man. So I have little time to teach you how to be a law-abiding, tax-paying, productive provider of this society. You can’t provide until you know how to do so for yourself. That’s my gift to you.”

And there it is, y’all. On my birthday, I received the best gift of all, even though I didn’t realize at the time. I received the gift of knowledge, which tastes better than any raspberry pie I’ve ever tasted.

‘los; out.

Funniest Call Center Stories: Curaçao

Today, I attended a mandatory meeting for work. During the slideshow, there was a segment dedicated to Costco Travel. I worked there for 13 years, most of which in the call center.

As you can imagine, I have plenty of stories of the calls I received. In American society, invariably you’ve contacted a call center filled wall-to-wall with customer service representatives (CSRs)

The following is just one of the funniest call center stories I have to share.

Funniest Call Center Stories: Curaçao

This story took place at Costco Travel. It was my first year, so I really wanted to make an impression. My trainer, Corrie, was promoted to supervisor that same year. She was my direct supervisor, in fact. Therefore she oversaw my development.

One of my Funniest Call Center Stories was regarding pronunciation of words.

A Costco Member called in wanting to a book Southern Caribbean cruise that embarked from San Juan, Puerto Rico. He knew the itinerary but clearly didn’t quite know the ports of calls like I did.

We agreed on all but one: Curaçao.

He had a Southern accent, but he insisted on calling it kur-ROCK-co. I explained to him the name is Dutch in origin, but he kept grating on my soul with his rough pronunciation of kur-ROCK-co.

Funniest Call Center Stories: Curaçao

I was in my mid 20’s so I was in the “save the world, by educating everyone” MODE with my correct pronunciation of the island.

He refused to yield.

I found myself locked horns with a stubborn Southerner over the how to say Curaçao.

After 20-minutes, I caved. I needed a sale for the day, and this guy was clearly in-it-2-win-it. Corrie started walking around to ensure if her team needed her assistance, she would be there.

I timed her arrival, and my incorrect pronunciation of Curaçao with a loud “kur-ROCK- CO” which stopped her dead in tracks!

She and I exchanged PAINED looks while I talked on the phone. She attempted to approach me but I held up my hand, then with my index finger and wagged it back and forth as warning to “not EVEN think of correcting me”!

I was dumber for this conversation which I wanted to end it sooner than later.

Corrie knew from her experience with me at this point to not question my actions while still on the phone.

She asked later what was the drama, and why I purposely alerted to her to it.

I retorted, “I was right, and should have been recognized for it by the caller!”

She smiled, and replied softly, “Los, sometimes the simple satisfaction of being correct should be it.”

Instead of being puffy-chested about it, and let my ego get in my way, I sighed. She was right. I let it go.

So if you’re ever on the Dutch island of kur-ROCK-co, be sure to greet that stubborn caller as I’m convinced he was left there by Carnival Cruise Lines in the early 2000’s.

Until next time, be good like you should, and if you can’t be good, be good at what you do!

Mic drop *bOoM*
‘los; out

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