Wednesday, November 28, 2012


Some people in this world are crazy,
making other people sick.
Drag them down to insane levels,
heart is dropping like a brick.

These people's thinking is quite hazy,
their misery loves company.
Bring down others just for fun,
destroy esteem quite happily.

Why must these people be so lazy,
their attitude I do disgust.
Concentrate on others faults,
when their own they ought adjust.


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Chocolate Ecstasy

Chocolate, chocolate, ecstasy.
How I love you,
Can't you see?

So creamy, smooth and tasty.
Whether rich,
or sweet as me.

A chocolate kiss, wonderful.
All I want,
savoury staple.

UK, Belgium, Switzerland.
Who makes the best,
which is your brand?

The only chocolate that is bad.
It's the one,
I haven't had.

Chocolate, chocolate, ecstasy.
How I love you,
Can't you see?


Monday, November 26, 2012

Jeffrey Scott's Chocolate Fest 2012

The first annual Jeffrey Scott Chocolate Fest was a big success. Initially my intention was to create a poem on chocolate. Then I started to wonder if there was a way I could collect various thoughts on Chocolate. So the chocolate blind taste test was born. I went to various stores to collect as many chocolate bars as I could find that were each distinct enough, and yet fairly similar. So I tried to find chocolate bars as close to milk chocolate as I possibly could. Considering the success, I'm considering doing this again next year. At least it'll give me ONE good reason to look forward to next winter. For each chocolate, the panel were asked to rate on a scale of 1 to 10. After the study was done and before the results were given, they were then asked to choose their favourite and least favourite.

The Chocolates:
In no particular order, I had my panel blindly sample the following:
Green & Black (Canada)
Cadbury Dairy Milk (UK)
Milka Alpine Milk (Germany)
World Market Milk Chocolate (USA)
Scharffen Berger Extra Rich Milk (USA)
Ghirardelli Milk Chocolate (USA)
Lindt Milk Chocolate (Germany)
Godiva Milk Chocolate (Germany)
Guylian Milk Chocolate (Belgium)
de Lish Premium German Milk (German)

Judges: Though I initially wanted mature women to sit in on the study, because of time I had to recruit a few children. Now that I know of several others who would have been interested in this study (maybe you too), I hope to include a full adult panel for next year.
Name: Mykala / Age: 11
Name: Caleb / Age: 15
Name: Victoria / Age: 15
Name: Lori / Age: 35
Name: Sarah / Age 35
Name: Christina / Age: 43

Results: After crunching the numbers, the results were gathered after adding the total number of points each chocolate received. In the result of a tie, I first went with the number of people who might have chosen the particular chocolate as their favourite.

First Place
Name: Lindt
County: Switzerland
Label Warnings: Possible traces of peanuts and tree nuts.
Average Calorie Per Gram: 13
Comments: Caramel Taste, Creamy, Sweet, Slight White Chocolate Taste, Divine, Familiar.
Favourite of: Sarah & Lori

Second Place
Name: Milka
Country: Germany
Label Warnings: May contain tree nuts and wheat.
Average Calorie Per Gram: 12
Comments: Smoky, Nutty, Smooth, Fruity, Lemony
Favourite of: Victoria

Third Place
Name: Green & Black's Organic
Country: Canada
Label Warnings: May contain traces of peanuts and tree nuts.
Average Calorie Per Gram: 13
Comments: Smooth, Biter, Milky, Average, Tasty, Creamy

Fourth Place
Name: Cadbury
Country: UK
Label Warnings: May contain tree nuts
Average Calorie Per Gram: 11
Comments: Sticky, Sweet, Nutty, Rough Texture, Average, Smooth
Favourite of: Christina

Click HERE for a Cadbury commercial.

Fifth Place
Name: Guylian
Country: Belgium
Label Warnings: May contain gluten and nuts
Average Calorie Per Gram: 15
Comments: Waxy, no taste, sweet, bland, tasteless, hard, very good
Favourite of: Caleb & Mykala
Least favourite of: Sarah & Lori

Sixth Place
Label Warnings: May contain peanuts, tree nuts and wheat
Average Calorie Per Gram:13
Comments:Tasteless, spice after taste, cinnamon, normal, interesting, hard

Seventh Place
Name:de Lish
Label Warnings: May contain hazelnut, almond and gluten
Average Calorie Per Gram:14
Comments:Neutral, Cheesy, Average, Smooth, One spit it out.
Least favourite of: Mykala

Eight Place
Name:Scharffen Berger
Label Warnings: Gluten Free
Average Calorie Per Gram:14
Comments:Earthy, Moldy, Waxy, Boring, Evil, Weird Aftertaste
Least favourite of: Christina

Ninth Place
Label Warnings:May contain tree nuts
Average Calorie Per Gram:13
Comments:Buttery, Smooth, What is that taste?, No comment
Least favourite of: Caleb

Tenth Place
Name:World Market
Label Warnings: May contain peanuts, tree nuts and wheat
Average Calorie Per Gram:13
Comments:Bitter and bold, burnt taste, taste like dark chocolate, bland, dirt
Least favourite of: Victoria

As an additional bit of information, I also broke up the statistics into two further groups.
Group 1: The Adults
Group 2: The Children

Group 1 Results
1. Lindt (Switzerland)
2. Green & Black (Canada)
3. Cadbury (UK)
4. Milka Alpine (Germany)
5. Godiva (Germany) Tie
5. De Lish (Germany) Tie
7. World Market (USA)
8. Ghirardelli (USA)
9. Scharffen Berger (USA)
10. Guylian (Belgium)

Group 2 Results
1. Milka Alpine (Germany)
2. Guylian (Belgium)
3. Green & Black (Canada)
4. Lindt (Switzerland
5. Cadbury (UK)
6. Godiva (Germany)
7. Scharffen Berger (USA)
8. De Lish (Germany)
9. Ghirardelli (USA)
10. World Market (USA)

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Pointless and Dumb

R.a.n.t. of week 11/25/12
Every once in a while, (usually around Winter, and usually for a few months), I start to have a dark cloud hover over me. Generally it's a grab bag of various reasons. One of the main things I have problems with is feelings of worthlessness. True, I know this is not unique to me, myself and I, but it doesn't help to know others deal with the same thing. Everyone has their own reasons for feeling the same way I do. So what's my biggest self doubt? Many times I feel what I do is pointless. An endless tedium of sleep, eat, work, ad nauseum. I look at others and see the wonderful works they do. I've got friends in the medical field, helping others who are sick, others produce wonderful works of art via camera or portrait. Still others are learning new languages so they can help others.... I could go on. Then I look at myself and wonder what meaningful thing I do? Is there anything I ever do that inspires, motivates or helps others?

Best I can do is entertain. I like to fancy myself as a comic, a writer and a poet - for the amusement of others. But do I? I strive to be clever, I hope to be motivational, I wish I were inspiring. But there are many times I feel my writing is completely pointless and utter rubbish. Does it really entertain anyone? I admit, initially I was going to rant about a seemingly lack of interest in my posts as identified by the comments I receive (or lack thereof). Then I thought it might be too petty, even for my blog. I suffer depression, so these feelings are likely a result of some chemical imbalance in my brain. So where do I go from here? I push past these feelings. I try to make what I write as meaningful as I possibly can. But ultimately, I plan to continue on with my writing. Because after all, even if my writing doesn't entertain anyone else, it entertains me. And if this entertainment helps me whether through my depression, then it has it's meaning and purpose.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Too, Shy, Shy

R.a.n.t. of week 11/18/12
Some people are described as living two lives. The open one, the one most people are fully aware of, and the hidden one. To some degree, that's describes me to a 'T'. But the usual connotation of the hidden life is one hidden intentionally for nefarious purposes. It's at this point, the hidden person inside of me begs to differ. I generally have no ill will of any sort. Ask my ex-wife. WAIT, No. I meant don't ask my ex-wife.

So what is the intent of my hidden self? In my case, (as the rant title implies), it's being shy. I've always felt I have a secondary person inside of me, just bubbling to get out. True, when I'm with those I've known for a long time, I don't have a problem releasing him. But in new situations, with new people, or a combination of both, I have a hard time being open. On-line and in writing, I never have a problem showcasing my other side. But typically in real life situations, to my dismay, I withdraw inside myself and seek a corner to hide in. Any party or reception I attend I'm generally found sitting alone in the back or with those I'm very familiar with. Being shy can be such a burden and a bother, but I don't generally talk about it. I sometimes wonder how those who don't know me, perceive me. Do they recognize I'm extremely shy? Or think I'm merely aloof, antisocial and/or a 'stick in the mud'.

Yet, this can be dealt with. Speaking for myself, a smile, eye contact or a kind word does wonders to break the ice. Just keep in mind, being shy usually means the person also struggles with finding things to say. I'm not one for idle chit-chat. I have a hard time talking about the 'weather'. But if you get me going, and we start talking about something I have an interest in, you will probably have a hard time shutting me up.

Additionally, part of the solution falls squarely on the shy person. All people are different, which means all shy people are different. I have one friend who's wife is so shy, she has a hard time replying, even when asked simply how she's doing. And still might have to ask her to speak up. But initiating eye contact is also important for the shy person. I tend to keep 'aware' of my surroundings but often I notice people walking around with blinders on. So if you want to draw out a shy person, find a common interest (a hobby they like), establish eye contact, greet them warmly (but give them space if they need it).

Shy people, we are not off the hook. We HAVE to work at being receptive. One of the hardest things in life is trying to get a shy person to open up when they refuse to be approachable. I've been on both sides in this matter, so I know. It's really hard to get 'the time of day' from someone if they intentionally are (or seem to be) ignoring you. Not everyone wants to get someone's attention by running up and waving their hands in front of their face.

6 Keys To Open Up Shy People:
1. Smile
2. Kind Words
3. Be Approachable!
4. Establish Eye Contact
5. Find a Common Interest
6. Don't Expect a Conversationalist

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Coming in Sick

R.a.n.t. of week 11/11/12
Life is hard, that certainly isn't a secret. It also wouldn't be such a great topic to r.a.n.t about considering how general the statement is. Still, one of the hardest things to do in life is striving to keep a decent job. Sometimes you have to do whatever it takes to keep the job, even if that means going into work sick. I'm not talking about the a case of the blues, or the blue flu, (I know nothing about that) I mean SICK! Hacking, sniffling, sneezing, coughing, aching, stuffy head & feverish kind of sick. [I'll take my royalties now Nyquil]. Who wants to do anything, let alone work, when they are sick? Even with sick time and personal time, you really don't want to take many days off if you can help it. That's why it sucks to be sick for more than a week, let alone a month or two.

The next thing worse than going into work sick is having someone else come into work when they are sick. When this happens, not only do you get to enjoy listening to them hacking, sniffling, sneezing coughing and such all day long, but you get the added worry of, "Will I be getting sick next"? Nothing worse than wondering all day long, "Did they just use this stapler"?, "Are they using tissue when they sneeze"?, "Are they contagious"?, "Why do they not wash their hands, but continue to keep touching my stuff"?, "Shouldn't they be shouting out 'UNCLEAN' as they walk along"? That's why it's distressing, and annoying when their sickness last more than a week, let alone a month or two.

Friday, November 9, 2012

You Will Never Read This

If you could only know,
the feelings deep inside.

How I wish it wasn't hidden,
these emotions that I hide.

My pulse begins to quicken,
when ever you are near.
The melody of your voice,
is all I care to hear.

But you will never read this,
and this I'll never tell.

How wonderful, if we could walk,
under the stars above.

No longer would I be so shy,
and I could tell you of my love.

But that is just a hopeful dream,
I'd never be so bold.

You will never know the truth,
your hand I'll never hold.

'cause you will never read this,
and this I'll never tell.


Sunday, November 4, 2012

Darkness Saving Time

R.a.n.t. of week 11/04/12
"Early to bed and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise." - Benjamin Franklin

Was Franklin advocating Daylight Savings Time? Was his quote intended to praise an early morning sunrise? Actually no, so he's spared my wrath. How do I know this? Well research for one, but I've also picked apart his quote. To do this, I had to look at what he DIDN'T say. Notice he didn't say 'early to bed and late to rise', this would be an indication of someone depressed rather than wise. How about, 'late to bed and early to rise'? This could indicate a person not rested, consumed in too many projects, thus resulting in making poor decisions. Hardly a wise person. Also his quote is sound because getting adequate sleep does indeed make a person healthy. At least it makes for a healthier person than one who never allows his body to fully recharge. As for the wealthy bit, I guess that remains to be seen. I'll let you know after I make my first million. I wonder if Trump is an 'early to bed, early to rise' person.

So rising early isn't something I'm opposed to. But note, it doesn't mean I need sunlight first thing in the morning. No, neither does it mean I need the sun to help wake me up. That's what my alarm clock is for. If I needed to employ the use of the sun in my time keeping, I'd own a sundial.  My main problem (or rant) is never having enough light in the evening. In the winter months, I end my secular days and it's already dark. When this phenomenon happens, I rarely have the ambition to work on projects once I get home. When DST ends, the feeling is intensified, thus my rant. This causes me to start squandering time. Why? Because it's hard to motivate myself when the evening dark makes my body want to be 'early to bed'. With this squandered time, who can truly feel they made the most out of life? Wait, why did that sound so familiar?

" not squander time; for that's the stuff life is made of." - Benjamin Franklin

Ahhh, that's why. Well played Benny.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Best Place, Beer History Tour (Set 2)

The rest of the tour moved on,
but I wanted to get a closer look at the office I saw.

Recently on a show called Abandoned, this desk was featured.
It was once used by Captain Frederick Pabst.
Jim Haertel, the owner, was not keen on anyone sitting at it.

Once again, the rest of the tour moved on.
This gave me an opportunity to take my time photographing.

In another room, older decorations of the building were found.

Not sure where this was found, but it's a generic beer.
Does anyone remember generic black/white labels?
Does anyone remember buying generic beer?

Another piece of "art" found was this Schlitz poster.
Schlitz, owned by Pabst, brewed by Miller.
If anyone is paying attention, you can add this to my wish list.

We really didn't have a lot of time so I called my friend Dan over.
You see I needed an accomplice.

I needed to sit at Captain Pabst's desk.
I just had to!