Corporate (hell) eating establishments

2004/08/04 at 13:47

I just called the nearby Macaroni Grill to make a reservation for a coworker’s going away lunch. When the phone was picked up, here’s what I got: “Hi. Thank you for calling Macaroni Grill in West Lake Hills, now offering curbside take-out. This is Stacy. How many I help you?”
Man, I could have gone and smoked a cigarette before Stacy got that out. I just imagine the Director of Telephone Reception at corporate Macaroni Grill’s HQ issuing his weekly memo on how to answer the phone properly, and reports from marketing analysts stating that mentioning curbside take-out in telephone reception will increase sales by X percent.
When I occasionally go through the Taco Cabana drive-through on my way to work to buy a breakfast taco, I get a similar spiel: “Hi, Welcome to Taco Cabana. Can I get you a [current breakfast special] this morning?” Me: “Uh no. I’d like one bacon and egg breakfast taco.”

God and mini-golf

2004/08/02 at 09:57

There’s a mini-golf and batting cages business in Pflugerville that closed a couple of years ago, and its property has been sitting vacant for a couple of years. I noticed a sign a while back announcing that the property was going to be auctioned off soon.
Well, imagine my surprise when I drove past yesterday and saw a new sign out front: it’s now a church.
minigolf_church.jpg

Lounge Lizard

2004/08/02 at 09:49

We have an anole lizard who sleeps at night on a red tip photinia leaf right outside the window in our downstairs bathroom. I saw it sacked out on a leaf a few nights ago and thought it was cute. But it was back again last night and this morning. I couldn’t figure out how to get a good photo in the dark, so I came back right at dawn. Sure enough, the lizard was awake, standing up and looking around. When I checked a few minutes later, it was gone. Off to do whatever lizards do during the day–eating bugs in our yard, I hope.

Dropping out…

2004/07/28 at 10:22

Every time we vacation in New Mexico, Katie and I spend some time discussing how we could manage to move up to the mountains. This summer, I realized that when I think about moving up there, I fantasize about completely dropping out of our (sub)urban professional lifestyle: lose the cell phones, big home, cable TV, broadband, traffic, worrying what the neighbors think, etc.
One part of me would be very happy to live wherever (which, in rural NM, probably means a trailer), drive an old pickup, let the kids run free in the woods, do a less demanding job, etc. Not sure it’ll happen anytime soon, but who knows?

Are you ready?

2004/07/28 at 10:16

Choosy Geeks Don’t Choose MSIE

2004/07/26 at 21:38

This is great!

Traffic Jam Photography

2004/07/26 at 21:35

I shot this photo of the Loop 360 bridge over Lake Austin this afternoon while stuck in traffic. The traffic was actually moving slowly, so I didn’t really have much time to compose. I just put the camera on auto, pointed it up through the windshield and shot. It came out much better than I expected. Turns out, the sky was a brighter blue than usual for July due to a ‘cold’ front that had blown through.
The bridge’s name is Pennybacker Bridge (thanks, Google), but nobody calls it that. Due to its striking architecture, it doesn’t need much to be identifiable.

Don’t talk to me like I’m a child…

2004/07/20 at 20:53

In the course of explaining why he doesn’t understand the Trinity, Mike Todd makes this analogy:

Those of you who are parents may relate to this: think about the way you explain complex issues to your young children. You do your best to get the point across, but you do it in terms they can grasp. In the end you leave out a whole lot of details that you know will only confuse, and your explanation sometimes only vaguely resembles the reality of the situation.
I wonder how often God does that with us.

That kind of puts me in my place.

Unhappy Mawmaw

2004/07/20 at 16:00

I took this photo of Katie’s mother while we were on vacation in New Mexico. We were sitting at a restaurant and the service was taking forever, so I was passing the time by playing with my camera and my small tripod. I set the tripod on the table top and pointed it at Kathy.
Mawmaw is frowning for several reasons: 1.) she’s really hungry and our food hasn’t come; 2.) the kids are really hungry, our food hasn’t come and therefore they’re acting badly, and 3.) she didn’t really want me to take the photo.
I didn’t include the photo in our vacation slideshow because Mawmaw thought it was an awful photo of her. However, I think it’s a great photo. Good lighting, and a very expressive face. I think of her wonderfully colorful character when I look at it (I mean that positively; I really do). So, I’m posting it in my blog instead.

Nature Photos

2004/07/20 at 15:47

I’ve been refreshing my photography skills. Here are some recent examples: