Sunday, June 10, 2012

Bringing the Blog back for the summer...

After much debate and contemplation, both emotionally and physically via myself, and speaking this over with my esteemed colleagues (Seth the Grossman "the fat one" and Dan the Jackson "skim milk") I have decided to fire the blog back up for the summer.  I mean, last summer I kept you all notified on my adventures through Great Falls, the 3 months I lived in the Staybridge Suites (including my towel battle with the maids) and a few adventures to the Lake and one to North Dakota... so why not keep you all updated on my summer 2012--the summer I am for the most part, gainfully unemployed.  While it may seem like all fun and games, I won't lie, it is all fun and games.  I will be doing some "light" work to keep myself occupied, however most days and evenings will be spent on a golf course or on a boat... tough eh!

So what I've been up to so far:

-Late-night trips to the dump for smashing things (cue the ax and hammers)
-Late-night excursions via Lakeside that include the various 7 watering holes (various activities)
-Golfing in the rain (too much of this so far, let's get some summer rolling Mother Nature)
-A bachelor party throughout Montana for golfing and other activities (feelings were hurt in the process)
-Landscape adventures (the way I've been working, call me Carlos Rodriguez)
-3 days of floating on the Smith River (this time cue the whiskey and fly rods...)

I think the best way to start this all off would be to first write about my time on the Smith River--this was a big time adventure filled with a great deal of activities.  I'll follow up with this later in the week--until then, I will leave you with a few thoughts I have come upon while spending a little time in the Flathead Valley.

Random Thoughts:

-Wal-Mart on a Sunday morning, the true "beauties" of Kalispell come out to spawn, children and all.
-I received 2 votes in the recent elections--one for the Supreme Court Clerk, and another for a state auditor position (I think I could take those positions on).
-Hospitals still creep me out, big time.  Too many weird things going on there.

That's it for now... more to come later this week!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Equal Opportunity Household: Andrew Helder

In an effort to address another view on this, blog, I have decided to outline/spotlight a number of different people that I have interacted with and/or witnessed in this life I live, filled with Great Falls, studying and running too much...

So really, I am going to attempt to spotlight some different people throughout the next few weeks.  Some of these people you may know, some may be strangers to you and some could actually be you.  It is important to stress, the views and opinions I will put forth for each person at 100% accurate and illustrate the individual just as they are.  That's the thing about the little "segment" I am putting together, the now bullshit clause (which I will refer to as the NBSC).  I suggest you take all these views and considerations into context from this point forward. 

To begin the segment, I give you: Andrew Benjamin Ross Helder

Many of you may know Andrew, and as many know, I know Andrew quite well.  Andrew has been my roommate and tenant for the past 4 years, along with the "guy" that takes care of many of the duties I accumulate.  In the past, Andrew has had many different names.  Some of them include:

-"Andrew Helder and Company or Andrew Heldertight" as seen in my phone

To give you an idea of Andrew, let me expand for a moment on some of the things I have had Andrew do for me over the years.  Now I am not saying he takes care of all my personal matters, but when you look at it, he does take care of quite a few things.  And when I say take care of, he makes it happen.  Instance:

Scenario (A): Carl departed for College one semester, while Andrew remained in high school (we won't go into why he was still in high school while everyone departed for college....) so I contracted Andrew to mow approximately 25 lawns a week for my clients.  Andrew didn't have the best time doing this, he did have a few issues with keeping the bagging device together, but overall, he took care of that gig.

Scenario (B):
Rock chip: Carl
Who get's it fixed? Andrew.  How does he do this? He steals my identity with the insurance company.  Success.

Scenario (C): Andrew has gone to bed at 11:30pm.  Carl is up getting some food and notices the front porch has fresh snow piling up.  Feeling this snow needed to be shoveled, Care inquired with Andrew as to why he had not cleaned it off.  His response: he was in bed.  Carl then SMS texted approximately 32 people instructing Andrew to get up and shovel the porch.  Andrew fulfilled the request. 

Scenario (D): Carl and his contingent were looking to attend a concert and felt a driver was needed.  The solution, hire Andrew, along with the rental of a 15 passenger van, to drive the contingent for the evening. 

Overall, Andrew is a mench kind of guy.  He looks at the big picture and finds a way around it.  I would say he is very into beating the "man" and looking for an alternative that will sit well with some, while at the same time upset many.  There have been many events/times that I have personally witnessed the best and the worst of Andrew, where each time some good decisions were made, and some poor ones were made.  The consequences?  I don't think any really.  Sure some bridges burned, but he's getting by right now. 

I went a little further and asked a few people to give me their views on Andrew.  In a recent interview with highly accredited and research specialist Patrick Casey, Patrick could only say the best about Andrew.  "He is a very influential guy that I enjoy being around.  Sure there are the times that I would like to drown him (light bulbs) but when it all boils down, he does good things.  I would say I am most intrigued with his ability to fake disguises, and be someone he really isn't.  I plan to ask Andrew to be the godfather of all my children, and I plan to have at least 14."

Further, I spoke with the gas truck driver for Cenex Harvest States, who got to know Andrew the last two summers while delivering gas to Andrew's place of work: the Docks in Lakeside MT. "Andrew was a good guy.  I didn't really talk to him too much, but when I did, he could really carry on a conversation.  You don't come across many guys in this business that have the abilities Andrew had when it came to pumping gas.  Don't get me wrong, it isn't that tough to do and I am sure anyone could do it, but Andrew really knew his way around the pump.  I mean hell, he could dock, fill and clean a boat all at the same time.  I'm still not sure how he does it, but I do think he may be some sort of a wizard.  I do plan to ask Andrew to marry my daughter, Abigale, when she returns from her mecca to Cuba."

And in a final interview, Seth Grossman gave me his own to cents on Andrew.  "I don't like him." 

I would like to thank my special guests for their opinions and input in this spotlight session.  Their views and concepts are NBSC and really outline the qualities and capabilities of Andrew.  In closing, I'd like to give you a few more closing facts that really give my interpretations of Andrew:

-I have nearly killed Andrew a number of different times, some of which included fireworks (two times), passing cars on Hwy. 93, boating, skiing and directing objects in his general direction
-If a knife were to be pulled on Andrew, he really wouldn't flinch too much.  It has been done a time or two to say the least
-There was one instance where I zip tied Andrew to a log at our lake house so he could not move, then knocked a bee hive on him from above.
-One day while skiing 3 people behind the boat, I subsequently jumped on Andrew's rope forcing him to fall face first and curse my name upon Flathead Lake
-Andrew has been told many times to "lay off the hooch" which in fact is 100% accurate
-When it comes to computers, Andrew knows them.  Often times too much.  He will mess some shit up on those things
-If you find Andrew doesn't like you, you might as well quit right then.  He isn't going change his me. Just ask a few people he has encountered in Bozeman

Continue to check back, further spotlights will be done later this week.  Do, enjoy.

Andrew Helder

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The Latest Happenings

So it has been a little while since I put a little blog update up--so I figured I better inform y'all of the latest in this wonderful summer we call Great Falls Livin'

What better way to do it than put together a poem of sorts that describes the last few weeks.  Please, do enjoy.

First there was the Lake for a few days,
Which ended with me being a bit dazed

The lake was cold,
Or so I was told,
While I always look bold

The fairways were green,
And the morning hot tub was filled with steam

I ran into some friends,
That went with the trend,
And did I mention golf was exceptional at Eagle Bend?

The boats were fast,
Never looking into the past

The raft up included 17 boats,
Everyone brought their totes,
But there was no need for coats

A long night was spent driving to the Falls,
Where upon arriving I was soon to study options and calls

The week was spent reading the books,
Getting strange looks,
And accusing the IRS of being crooks

At the end of the week,
I was headed to North Dakota to begin a long streak

The highline was long,
I filled Andrew a Kong,
And soon we would sing a wedding song

The oil of Williston was crude,
However the people were really not that rude (some exceptions)

The Airport International Inn was filled to the max,
I did not appreciate the sales tax,
And Andrew would soon try and find a fax

The wedding was hot,
And I did not take a trot

Being the best man was a big job,
However I did not look like a slob,
And the reception would soon be a mob

The drive back to MT was quick,
Mainly to get out of the oil slick

The time in ND was filled with remembering old times,
Spending a few dimes,
And looking for that lost Carona lime

Great Falls has been very warm,
Along with evening thunder storms

The Staybridge Suites will never get old,
Or so I am told,
However it is unlike the Airport International Inn which was filled with mold

This one goes out to another weekend at the Lake,
Where I am sure I will eat at least one steak

More interesting times are soon to be had in the Great,
It does seem to be a trait,
Along with my ever-so-classy intern-mates

My best to you as we enter the 3rd weekend of July!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Welcome Home (I have two homes...)

Notice the title here: Welcome Home.  Here is the thing, this summer I have two homes.  Not to be confused with the home I have in the fall and spring months when I reside with Andrew Benjamin Ross Helder and Seth Austin Grossman; but I have a new home this summer: Room 327 at the StayBridge Suites in Great Falls.  Now many have you have seen my posts on Facebook and previous blogs that regard the "Bridge" and some of the problems I have had here.  I will not continue to rant about these problems (although they have yet to stop--although the flood did stop in my room) so I will move on.  But again, Welcome Home--back to the Lake, or back to the Bridge?

I did spend some time back at the Lake this past Independence Day weekend, where I was surrounded by many family and friends.  To name a few:

-Uncle P
-Mrs. Patyk
-Robert A.
-Ms. Swings
-My dear Uncle Earl
-Loud Mouth Mike
-Dog Balls
-Midnight Dame Hannah (Points for anyone who can name this one...)
-Heavy D (although lack there of now...)
-Ms. Annie ~ future homecoming queen of MSU (first time meeting there)
and lots of other people, I have missed some

But welcome home.  That was a very nice welcoming home to the Lake for the weekend, along with the great times that were to follow.  I will say, there were some very good times that were had, along with maybe a few souls broken (i.e. Grossman).  Upon returning to Great Falls after departing Lakeside at 4:15 am July the 5th (long day) I was welcomed home by our class Asian (D-Kwan) and the rest of the rowdy crew. 

Plans for the rest of the week:

--Test Searles on his ability to see through my sweet-talking (he will...)
--Attend a Great Falls Voyager's game and participate in the $25 ticket section...
--See what the deal is with Ulm and the concept of fishtailing...(Stacey, you come in here...)
--Swim the Missouri River?
--Post up at the Country Club for a few hours and see what that know what I'm talking about D-Kwan and Lance Armstrong...
--Uncover the mystery of the occupation of the Bridge guest who "everyone seems to love, minus the interns of DA"...this really is bothering me.

Until then, ya'll have a good week and weekend.  I'll keep posting up here at the Bridge and the Falls of Great.  Don't you worry, I'll be just fine. 

Monday, June 27, 2011

The Great Life -- [greyt] adjective, -er, -est, adverb, noun, plural greats, ( especially collectively )

Notice the title of this brief post-up: The Great Life. This is simply the life that I am living right now. This is not to say the life is Great or anything, I just simply reside in Great Falls, MT (59404). This is also not to say this a a great life as to use the word great as an adverb, where in many cases, yes, it can be used in that context. An example:

"Man, there sure are some great options in Finance" please note, there are many puns to this simple quote, especially if you have become more than versed in the world of finance...myself to be included.

"Great Falls sure is a rip-roaring good time"

Just look at these examples, you can see the difference. You be the judge and decide how I am living "The Great Life"--message, phone or mail me at my residence in Great Falls:
201 3rd Street Norhtwest
Great Falls, MT 59404

(406) 761-4903
Now moving to the post-up: I have been living in the GF for just about 3 weeks now, and I must say, I have established quite the presence in the area. Besides being 100% versed with the happenings of Malmstrom Air Force Base and knowing all inhabitants and members of the base (this one goes out to my gal Jan working in the 4G-a Kitchen, keep that pot roast coming girl!) I have been quite busy attending local events, charity auctions, learning the names of the most popular hobos and a vast amount of other things. Overall, yes, I am adjusting to life in the Big City as we like to call it, for the GF is a booming and happening metropolitan area. So in going with the flow, I'd like to give you a few tid-bits and extras that I have noticed over my time in the GF:

Jam Boys are far and few between.

My maid at the Bridge was under the impression I was housing a small family in my one person room (Room 327) as she routinely left me 5 clean towels after each morning's room cleaning. This was not necessary, as I use 2 towels a day, which can be re-used multiple times. Now folks, I am all about helping save the environment (minus plastics provided by Patyk) so I think this was a little excessive. Upon a written request by yours truly, my maid (name unknown) has halted excessive towels each day and now leaves me with 2 fresh ones a day. Again, maybe a little much, but at least some progress was made. I expect she (well you know, it could be a he) is still upset I use my own soap, shampoo and conditioner; rather than the cleansing materials provided by the Bridge.

Great Falls is filled with a variety of people, all of which dress, act and behave in differing ways. Upon my first lunch outing with the D-Quan and J-Hawk, I noticed a gentleman walking down Main Street GF without a shirt on, along with a python wrapped around his neck/chest. The following week in another subsequent lunch outing with again, the D-Quan, J-Hawk; along with Lance Armstrong, Jim and Parker, we noticed: a gentleman wearing Carharts with black spandex biking shorts over them, a "Dragon Wagon" fully decked out in custom dragon graphics and a license plate reading "DRGNWGN" and a fancy walker. Quite the crew here--never a dull moment on the streets.

Persons, like myself, are not accepted in the community when exercising/running while wearing short running shorts and knee-high compression socks. When these are the only garments you wear, many choice words will be thrown at you, along with the occasional "harassment" from Junior High Aged Youths (JHAYs)

When a group of 5+ mench gents like myself walk down the street all wearing a button-up shirt with a blue tone, many will suspect the group is a group of Mormon Missionaries. Trust me, we are not--we're just going to lunch, possibly Taco Del Sol, The Pizza Barron or Subway--the Daily Grind will not be on this list effective 6-27-2011.

And finally, when you run into someone from Ulm, MT that claims they are deaf "but can read lips really good," they are simply lying. The reality of it, they are not deaf, and really, all they are looking for is a fishtail--long story. Put more simply, I would shy away from the 5'7", early 30's curly hair gal from Ulm that is still living at home with "mom" and "dad" (might I add, they are not my mom and dad, so when "mom" and "dad" is said when the person is talking about THEIR parents, I wish they would address them in by "my mother", "my father" or by their names. Otherwise, I might think you are talking about my mother and father and in reality, I don't think they will be at Machinery Row in GF...just saying).

Coming attractions: Carl interviews the sole Asian in the DA intern program--the D-Quan.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Back in the Swing of Things

I do realize it has been a few fortnights since I last blogged, or as I like to call it Blitzkrieg Blog named after that swinging musical ensemble the Ramones, so I thought I would throw a little post up here to update y'all on the events thus far; as we continue down this road we call Summer 2011.

Well after entering into an early retirement in May, I spent my time bettering myself on the golf courses of the Flathead Valley, shooting shotguns and clay, as well as being the mench kind of person I am on ol' Conrad Point.  As good as this life was, it was time for me to move on and think about what I will do with the rest of my life--while retirement was good at the age of 22, I think I need to at least do something more until say, 30.  But before we go to the rest of the story, let us pause for a quick story about retirement--let us call this Memorial Weekend.

Just as any other Memorial Weekend would entail, this was the same as others: golfing 18 holes on our golf course, shooting a couple hundred shells, having a North Dakota-style Throw-back party and preparing for the Great Flood of Flathead.  Well really, that was the weekend in a nutshell.  Lots of friends and good times.  However, there was one evening when we were coming from a fabulous meal at the Zoo when we stopped by a Legend of Lakeside: Miss Tami's Shortbranch, home of High Pockets Tami.  While sitting at this lovely lounge in the heart of Lakeside, we came across a heavy-set gentleman, that goes by the name of Harry, haling from non other than Cardston Alberta.  Harry (a financial planner) was in the Valley for the weekend with his girlfriend (roughly the same age, shall we say 54 with a standard deviation of 2.8 years) and the girlfriend's stepdaughter (let us also say she is a bit larger and in her mid to late 20's--the typical kind of gal you may find at say MSU Billings).  Harry was telling us that once he hits the US Border, he becomes an immediate alcoholic due to the feasibility (if you will) of purchasing alcohol, and gradually works his way to the cabin he stays at on Flathead.  No matter what time he leaves Canada, he still always ends up at the cabin just after 2am, as he HAS to stop at every bar along the way to have a cocktail or two.  Now, let us think about this for a minute:

According to Google Maps, the mileage from Cardston Alberta to Lakeside Montana is roughly 131 miles via Going to the Sun Road.  Now Going to the Sun is quite heavily buried in 20+ feet of snow still, so that rules out Harry making the trip in 3 hours and 12 minutes.  Scratching Route A, we now move to Route B--via the lovely town of Browning MT, home of the Blackfeet.  And according to Professor John Mariam, who I had the delight of studying Native American Studies with this past semester at University, the Blackfeet were one of the last tribes to adopt the horse, which upon doing this, hunting, gathering and travel were made much easier (just a little bit of history I thought you may enjoy...).  In looking at the tribe today, shall we say they have moved over to dogs?

Route B is roughly 189 miles, clocking in at 4 hours and 1 minute.  In talking with Harry, we gathered that he left Cardston at roughly 12pm, Mountain Standard Time.  Now if Harry and his entourage came straight to Lakeside, he would have been passing by Glacier Bank of Lakeside at roughly 4:01pm.  Wrong.  It was 10pm in the evening when we met Harry.  You  do the math on that one--he had made some stops to say the least.  And the Shortbranch, that is not the last bar out of Lakeside, in fact there are 5 more before you exit: Joe Bloggz at the Conoco/DQ, the Spinnaker, Finns at the Exxon, the Homestead and Tamarack (another small bit of info, just in case you wanted to know...).  I feel good about saying Harry made at least one more stop before exiting Lakeside and traveling to Deep Bay.

Well we chatted with Harry a bit about what he was going to do while he was in the Valley for the weekend.  His plans were quite simple, and it sounded as though Harry was going to have a good time.  He did want to make sure he made a stop by JC Penny's as he can get his XXXL shirts there for much cheaper than in Canada--that is TRIPLE extra large (this will help you paint the picture a little better of the mench guy Harry is).  In fact, Harry is well aware of the shirt selection and quoted us a price of $14, just in case you were in the market.  Give me a call--I can send you some more info once I complete my full research analysis on the topic.  Meanwhile, we had been talking with Harry's Girlfriend's Step-Daughter and felt she needed to go chat with our good friend Jamie who was with us for the weekend, voyaging from Big Sky.  Jamie was across the bar talking to his sister on the phone, when he was interrupted by Harry's Girlfriend's Step-Daughter.  She was quite interested in Jamie and must have also thought he was a standout guy, as we all know he is.  I must also say, we may have mentioned he was a good snuggler...that may have helped out the situation.  While talking with Harry's Girlfriend's Step-Daughter, Jamie began to feel uncomfortable.  To make a long story short, Harry's Girlfriend's Step-Daughter felt, shall we say passionate, about Jamie...while Jamie was in distress until my gracious mother kindly saved him from the situation.  Upon talking with Jamie, he told us of the quote Harry's Girlfriend's Step-Daughter shot at him: "I want to destroy you in the bathroom".  I apologize if this was a little harsh, and trust me, I like to keep my blogs at a PG level, however I felt this was needed to fully depict the story.  Well Jamie was not too happy with us, but he would soon move on.  (One more piece of info that I would like to pass on is, Jamie soon contracted pink eye in both eyes and came down with a very serious head cold.  Needless to say, the Valley worked him over that Memorial Weekend.)

It was then time for us to move on and say our goodbyes to Harry, Harry's Girlfriend and Harry's Girlfriend's Step-Daughter.  Well, Harry's Girlfriend was in the casino gambling (didn't talk to her as we exited) and Harry's Girlfriend's Step-Daughter was missing (bathroom???) and frankly, we just told Harry we would be back in a bit...which was false, as we never did return to "catch up"--is it possible Harry is still there waiting for us?  I sure hope not, but as I type this, I begin to wonder if I should go check to make sure.  To be continued...

Well that was just a small sampling of one of the many good times that were had that Memorial Weekend, as well as many others thus far at the Lake.  So far many golf balls have been lost, countless tennis balls have been lost in the woods or the lake due to the dogs, many clay targets have been lost and some souls have been lost...well, not really, but some may have been briefly hurt (example: Jamie).  But hey, that is what it is all about up here in the 48th parallel!

So now that I am done with the retirement thing, I have taken a position as an intern for DA Davidson for the summer, where I will soon be relocated to Great Falls to post-up in the Staybridge Suites.  With this being said, if anyone is in the area, make sure to look me up or send me a message on this new and exciting tool I was recently introduced to: Email.  Get more mailman, we can now send "mail" via the telephone lines and have immediate and direct delivery.  Once you dial up, you're set--mail all the time!  What will they think of next???  House phones you can take with you when you leave way?!

As I close out this blog, let me leave you with a few more pieces of info that I have picked up along the way in retirement:

--The Flathead is in fact located in the 48th North parallel, not the 44th as I was led to believe.  (note this...and do not name a Porsche "44 North" as a "cute" name for driving in the Valley
--Outlook Express 2011 is not a difficult program to operate or navigate, however I was still given a 60 minute tutorial on this "difficult" task
--Neighbors that tell you they do not like to leave home much as they don't want to drive their car because it "pollutes the beautiful environment" tend to be quite strange and hermits.  They also do not care for Carl M. Nystuen or his two black labs who use to frequent a running trail near their home, until an encounter with BethAnne regarding Napp Weed led to the dismissal of the 315 Conrad Point residents.  Soon to follow, the 527 home of the Patyk's were asked to leave
--Instead of buying sandbags in the Flathead, you can actually save money by purchasing 44,000 pounds of sand from Bozeman and have them sent up explain that one
--Anyone who has ridden in more than 1,000 cabooses for a period of 30 years or more can often be the wrong person to strike up a conversation with.  I strongly urge you to not partake in this one

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Regionals...Here I come...I guess

So I was really enjoying this retirement thing, until Lyle informed me that I was going to have to go to Regionals next week.  I was thinking maybe I'd get the year off, but he signed me up for a FEW races....

Here is the line-up for this year....

A total of 7 races, including trials and finals.  I have the Steeple, 5k, 10k, and 1500.  I really just wanted to grab a few 5ks and a 10k, but Dr. Weese said I needed to add the 1500 to get some speed practice in for the other races that weekend, and the Steeple would "just be some good training and such I guess" quoted Lyle.  So I am going to have to trade in my coffee cup and black dogs for a few pairs of training shoes and some spikes, I gotta run a few laps now.  As if the 37.5 laps and 9.5 miles worth of racing last weekend wasn't enough, I'll be adding 73 laps to the agenda for next week.  I guess so Lyle...

I wasn't too happy, so he said I should just blog about it.  Not sure this helped a whole lot Lyle...