Saturday, May 31, 2008

Expert? . . .Me?

Finally received news on the teaching position. Beginning June the fifth, I will officially be a staff member at a nearby community college. It is exciting. I would be lying if I did not admit to having some reservations. Deep down inside, I know that I will do well. But a new path within my career field has some degree of intimidation.

I have quite a lot of work ahead of me. My title will be "Credentialed Expert". Essentially it's a fancy term for Assistant or Secondary Instructor. I have four classes that I must tackle in the next six weeks. If I can pull those off then I will be close to earning state recognition. That will allow me to be a Primary Instructor. After finishing those courses I have to instruct for eighty hours and be evaluated. At that point my documentation and credentials would be submitted to the state for final approval.

Several of the current Primary Instructors have already contacted me asking for assistance. I already have four days in June that I will be teaching. So with that, my regular job, and having to full fill my required classes, June and July will be hectic. Two of the four classes that I have to take will require me to travel out of town for a few days. Mrs. T has been very supportive. I know she wants this to happen for me, but once again we will be apart for an extended period of time. I know it bothers her but she is being understanding. To top it off, she starts school on the twenty-fourth of June. Hang on, I think it's going to be a wild couple of months.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

I'm Back With A Vengeance

Alright, I'm back. It's been such a crazy week and a half. I'm going to spew quite a bit of crap out. If it appears that I am jumping around like an epileptic at a square dance, I apologise in advance.

Let me begin by thanking all of you for the concern and kind words. I greatly appreciate it.

In brief summary of last week, my Grandfather died. Sad news yes, but it didn't bring me to any form of incapacitation. I had only seen him a few times in the last twenty years. I'll save my childhood memories for a later post. No funeral was planned just a memorial. I have not, an most likely will not be invited. I will remember him and celebrate his life privately in my own way.

In the days after his death I found myself putting a great deal of thought in the whole "Death" thing. In my mind I actually constructed a great blog post about the subject. I wrote it, read it, edited it, and re-wrote it several times in my head. It was amazing. When the time came to transfer the words from the grey matter to the computer, it occurred to me. It was pretty fucking bleak and dark. Well written yes, but frankly it was depressing as hell. So, I elected to keep it up top. Maybe someday I will let it out. For now. . . .I'll wait.

With all of my introspective assessment and vain attempts at self analyzation I have not found the key to happiness. I did find an old rusty lock where the fucking thing must go, but *hmmmpph*, no damn key. . . .I'll keep looking.

Last week I outed myself a bit. I was in a strange mood and needed to give some of me, to all of you. I have been considering it for quite some time. To tell you the truth, my job will provide a lot of entertaining material for the blog. I also rambled about my pre-blog research. I'm weird like that. I like to know about "things" before I commit involvement. So if I sound like a wacko for reading "Blogging for Beginners" lists. . . . Take a good look at this. . . .

Anyway, where was I? Oh yeah, outing myself and "honesty". My decision to use a pseudo name was simple. Anonymity is essential for my career. Besides I think there is something kinda cool about the whole superhero "other" name thing. By the way, the answer is "No"! I don't have bright red body suit with a fire hydrant blazoned across my chest; fucking smart ass. . . . . .

It's actually black with a big "J".

Considering that my "family" has all but vanished. Save the intermittent "Hey, guess who died" call. Here is the "major change" I have decided to pursue. I am going to change my last name. Not my fake Superhero last name, but my real life last name. Having no real connection to the "Wacko Clan", I'm going to drop the Fuckerville Step Dad name in lieu of my biological fathers surname. Mrs. T is ecstatic since she hates the "Now" name and loves the "Birth" name. A new life starting with my old name. I feel good about it.

Anyway campers, it's nice to be back. See you all again tomorrow night. I'll catch up on all of your blogs around lunchtime.


Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Crisis Averted....Maybe?

I'm back from a week long emotinal rollercoaster of change. Sorting out and contemplating making some drastic moves in my life. Hope all is well with everyone.


Wednesday, May 21, 2008

A Bit Of Honesty.

I was inspired to begin my personal blog after reading one created by an old friend. Prior to embarking on my blogging journey I did quite a bit of reading to learn more about the process and to gain some sort of insight into what makes a successful blog. In my research I found a list of suggestions that one woman had created to help out the new blogger. Although I would love to give her due credit, I have lost both the list and the link to her website.

One of the bullet point suggestions was to NOT use your real name. Her thought was that in order to have a truly honest blog, that is "real", many beginners find it helpful to create a persona or nickname that becomes there blogging identity. Strange really, the idea that you had to somehow be "dishonest" in order to be honest. But I did again see some logic to her idea. In addition she suggested that you tell none of your close friends or relatives until you have established a voice and audience. Again, her theory is that people filter and water down what they write out of fear of what people they know will think or feel. Again, sounds like a great suggestion.

So when I went about creating this blog, I took her advise on several points. I picked a name that fits who I am as a person and in fact gave a clue as to my profession of choice. Not knowing how protective to be of my identity, I had chosen to not come out an reveal what I do for a living. But with yesterdays post I felt it was important (in order properly convey that moment in my life) that I reveal a bit of me. I am a firefighter. The "Branch" is my station and the "Company" is the city I serve.

I have yet to reveal my blog to family and friends. I don't believe that will happen anytime soon. In addition I kind of like the whole Jake thing. Because trust me, my real name is really really generic. As a matter of fact if I was a can of beer, I would just be a plain white can with my first name in bold black letters. (Plus I would be flat and most likely leave a bad taste in your mouth). So please still think of me as Jake, the confused 40 year old fireman from California.

As far as the Grandfather events of the last few days. I have quite a bit to think about before I write about it. I am leaving tomorrow and will be gone for a few days. I will post again on Tuesday.

Take care,

p.s. She also suggested that you cuss alot. I fucking loved that one!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

As Promised.

This is for Jenji. I told you I would.

The Sload

The Sload

Monday, May 19, 2008

The Call.

Click to view a larger image.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

"I'll Have The Pretzel Please...Yes, With Extra Pain"

If any of you out there are missing your Romanian interrogation expert you can put your mind at ease. I found him. I had another massage this week. This is like the eighth time I have been to see this guy. For the record, these massages offer none of the following...

  • Tranquil music that would make Yanni and Kenny G feel gay.
  • Candles; like in the intro to Kung-Fu.
  • A girl named Ling'.
  • Cucumbers on the eyes or green tea callus paste.
  • Reach arounds or happy endings.
  • Martinis with lemon wedges
  • foot, hand, or temple rubs.
These sessions last about thirty minutes. This guy is so frigging' rough that I have left bruised, sweaty, and nauseated. O.K. that did sound kind of gay but it's not what you think. In spite of having a degenerative spine, the last six weeks or so have been great. Between sessions my pain occurs half as much and is half as bad. But, these massages are truly painful.

At the last session with Boris*, tears actually formed at the corners of my eyes. Sensing my discomfort, Conan laughed and backed off a bit. But I have to admit. Since then I have had more pain than normal. I guess that I need to leave my Care Bear and Crayons at home and be a man next time.


*I considered calling him Vlad the Impaler but that really sounded gay!

Thursday, May 15, 2008


What a funky week. Since Mothers Day I have been in a pretty strange place; mentally speaking. It's not like I've been hanging at the Burning Man Festival or something along those lines. I've just been stuck in this bitter lonely space. I won't bore you with my whiny history. If you care to get some background read this. The second week of May is just a bad time for me. Mothers Day, her birthday, and my brothers birthday all fall in the same week. It just stirs up a lot of bad feelings that I really don't care to have. To top it off, Mrs. T was out of town which left me at the house by myself with a ton of time to stew. In spite of my shitty mood, the week was productive. In the five days since the wifey left, here are some of my accomplishments.

  • Cleaned the house. Well technically I fucked the house up. So truth be told I just cleaned up all of my shit.
  • Major yard work. The lawn was looking pretty jacked up. So I tightened it up a bit.
  • Mrs. T's truck cleaned out and detailed.
  • Took the cat to the Vet. By the way "thanks doc, my wallet was getting a bit on the heavy side. You're a real pal for helping me lighten it up."
  • Put Mrs. T's office back together. Grandma had taken it over when she lived with us. Since she moved, we haven't had the time to put things back in place.
  • Got the documents sent in to lower my property taxes.
  • Got the Roadking to Harley for some much needed work. I should have been a Vet or a Harley mechanic, those guys are making a killing!
  • Went to a Giants game last night.
  • Ran
  • Cleaned up an old softball field in our neighborhood that was abandoned. Now the young Titus doesn't have to drive so far to practice her pitching.
  • Drank beer. Yeah, I know. Not really an "accomplishment", but WTF? I was pissed off and alone for Christ sake!
  • Watched several movies that I had wanted to see. BTW, "Atonement" was amazing.
  • Put together and sent, three packages to soldiers in Afghanistan. Visit, it's a great thing, check it out.
  • Cleaned out the garage. Is it just me, or do garages have some magical power that creates clutter out of nothingness?
  • Got a massage to lossen up my neck.
  • Paid all of the bills.
Anyway, Mrs. Titus gets home in the morning. I can't wait. I miss her a bunch. I have gained a new found appreciation for her day to day existence. I am the one that is normally gone for days at a time. She is left here by herself on a regular basis. I don't know how she keeps it together? If I was in her shoes, I'm sure I would have stabbed myself in the ear with a butter knife a long time ago.

Well, I'm off to bed. Have a great weekend.


Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother F*@&#R Day!!!

What a week! I'll do my best not to dwell on my bullshit to much. Please bear with me for just a moment. Mrs Titus is in Alaska and the young Titus is at dinner with her boyfriends family. So, Jake is flying solo tonight. Frankly, it sucks. As you all know, today is Mothers Day. Being estranged from my mother has left me in a weird funk. To top it off her birthday is tomorrow. It's a blatant reminder that I do not have what most of you do. So my message to all of you is "appreciate what you have."

Not wanting to stay home alone tonight I decided to treat myself to dinner. Bad idea!!! I arrived at a local restaurant tonight to get a bite to eat and discovered that it was PACKED!!! So, I elected to eat at the bar. Now, can you help me out here? What the fuck possesses drunk people in bars to strike up conversations with me? I mean really, is there some neon message plastered across my forehead that says "Talk to me, I'm pathetic"? No, there isn't. Two weeks ago a guy babbles to me about wanting to be a solider of fortune and kill people. (No, I'm not fucking kidding.) Now tonight this couple starts in on me. To provide a little background, this restaurant/bar belongs to a friend of mine. These two dirt bags are "BLITZED"!!! They start telling me how bad the food is and how bad the service is, blah blah blah blah blah. Not five minutes into this whole episode the male half of the "Hammered Duo" says "hey, can you get me a job?" .............???? WTF? Are you kidding me? You verbally dismantle my friends business and then ask me for a job? Why? Why me? Can I not wallow in my own misery in peace? Does every drunk on the west coast somehow "relate" to me?

So I have this entire week off. I do not have to return to work until next Sunday. Last week I posted a list of things that I hoped to accomplish. Without having time off I have already accomplished seven of the nineteen listed items. This week might actually end up going pretty well. Unfortunately I won't have the chance to see my friend Skid. Of all the things on my list, I looked forward to that the most. Well, maybe next time.

The running is going well. I am forcing myself to train two days and then take one day off. So far there are no pains. In addition I am continuing to be motivated. I still have to pick a race out for June. Hopefully by doing that, my motivation to train will remain high.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

"I've Got The Runs"

Why do I do it to myself? I really think that I am nuts sometimes. So I decided to get back into running.

You see, a few years ago I got a wild hair up my ass and started to train for a triathlon. I trained and trained. Several months went by and I stuck with it. I was doing well, or so I thought. One day I started have pain in my hip while running. If I slowed to a walk the pain went away. If I picked the pace back up, the pain returned. I spoke with friends who are insane runners (marathons and centuries). They all said the same thing. "You are over training, slow down". I followed the advise given. That became my down fall.

You see, I am a bit of an extremist. I do nothing "halfway." If I take interest or liking to something, I immerse myself in the subject or activity. So, as you can imagine, I went from future Ironman superstar to Jaba the Hut just a matter of weeks.

What made my conversion back to a slug so easy, was the wife. Mrs Titus would often mock me when I trained. I'm not a spastic runner or anything, it just makes her laugh. She thinks running is a completely silly waste of time. You see, Mrs. T hates to run. She fucking "HATES IT"! She hates it more than when I leave dishes in the sink or my socks under the coffee table. So when I returned to my NFL command post (the recliner), she made no bones about it.

On Friday she drops this insane bit of news on me. "Jake, I signed up for the Bay to Breakers 10k. It's in two weeks." WTF!!! "Honey"; I said, "You despise running!" She echoed the same sentiment in her reply. She went on to explain that she didn't have the slightest clue what possessed her to sign up, other than "It looked fun." Again, WTF? So now, back to my moment of insanity. Her actions have motivated me to train again. This time I am starting off a bit slower with more reasonable goals. I am going to run in a 5k by mid-June. That is my goal. I'll keep you posted. Holy shit, what the fuck am I doing?


Monday, May 5, 2008

Such An Idiot!!!

Before getting into how great the weekend was, let me begin by saying that "I am and idiot". First of all, Mrs. Titus's Alaska trip isn't until next week. So, this calender oversight submarined any chance of an acute and rare illness befalling the Jake. So my list of "things" became irrelevant. Today would have been a day off. Instead, I elected to work. Maybe exhaustion will bring on some slight illness that would, in turn, justify unscheduled rest.

Of all my planned events, I was looking forward to two in particular. This morning I had a scheduled Chiropractor appointment and thirty minute massage. I so needed that. The other was seeing a friend from high school. Skid Jones and I were going to try and hit a baseball game in Sacramento. Mutually it wasn't going to work out. Instead we decided to do it next week.

As busy as I have been with work, I fell behind on the "Not So Weekly 6-Pack". In order to catch up on the Cinco de Mayo beer reviews I purchased the Mexican Beer sampler from Costco. In theory this was a great idea. What I found out is that it is not. You see, there comes a certain point when drinking that, beer is just beer. Differentiating one from the other becomes difficult, and frankly pointless, after the first 6-pack. So in the future the review will be one brand at a time.

The city was great! Dinner plans fell through because we had drinks with friends before getting on the Baylink Ferry. We arrived at Cobb's about five minutes after the doors opened.

You wouldn't imagine how awesome our seats were!

Pic from our seats. Mike Birbiglia was fucking hilarious!

Coupled with great food and many many many drinks. . .The night was a blast.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Cracka Please!!!

Woo Hoo!!!! Mrs. Titus suprised me. Heading into San Francisco tonight for...

"See ya Sunday. . .Suckers. . . Woo Hoooooooo!!!

Friday, May 2, 2008

In Need Of Preventive Maintenance

I am fucking tired. I am worn-the-fuck out and need a break. Since April the first until today, work has kept me from home for twenty-one days. The few days that I have had off have been filled with errands and miscellaneous "honey-do" projects. I will be home tomorrow morning. I am scheduled to return to the office on Tuesday. The truth is; and I can tell you right now, that is not happening. If I "hypothetically" were to get sick Monday night and miss work on Tuesday and Wednesday, I wouldn't have to return to the office until the following Monday. Complicated, I know. If you don't ask, I won't have to explain. In addition, Mrs. Titus is considering a trip to Alaska that would have her leaving on the 5th. So, Simply put, I am looking down the barrel of a nine day vacation. Jake can to do "whatever"!!! Should I pull the trigger? Here is a partial, running list of activities I hope to enjoy.

  1. Sleeping in at least one day.
  2. Passing out at least on night.
  3. Playing a round of golf.
  4. Seeing a baseball game. Either the A's or Giants. . .it doesn't matter.
  5. Visiting Skid Jones in Sac.
  6. Smoking "several" cigars.
  7. Fixing the Roadking.
  8. A possible Sopranos marathon.
  9. A beach day.
  10. Spontaneous poker night with guys from the "old branch".
  11. Getting Mrs. Titus's truck detailed.
  12. Get my property taxes lowered.
  13. Getting all the crap in my "ebay sell pile" photographed and put online. (hey, that could make a great blog post.)
  14. Did I say "sleeping in"?
  15. Surprising Mrs. T by finishing all the painting in the upstairs part of the "Titus Pad".
  16. Mass TIVO catch up session.
  17. Reno road trip? Hhhhhmmmmmm. . . maybe if the Roadking comes back to life.
  18. Get my left sleeve started in Oakland.
  19. Oh yeah, Blog my ass off!!!!

Well, that's a start. Anyone have any suggestions? I would love the input.

See ya this weekend. Oh wait, you all have lives. O.K. see ya on Monday


Thursday, May 1, 2008

On A More Serious Note.

This morning on the news I heard that fifty-0ne U.S. soldiers died in Iraq in April of 2008. This compelled me to do some research. As of about 10:00 this morning pacific time, 4,064 of our troops have died in Iraq. In addition, 496 have died in Afghanistan. Several years ago I had sent packages to our troops through I was pleased to see that in March, Dave at Blogography had plugged this web site. I was not only glad to see that others were doing their part, but it reaffirmed my commitment as well. Remember folks...even if you don't agree with the conflicts (which I do not), please support the troops. As a former service member, I know what it's like to be away from home. Anything is appreciated.

My thanks go out to all of the folks working so hard at "Anysoldier", Dave at Blogography, and most of all... all of the women and men in the armed services.