Monday, March 21, 2016


Last Friday I came face to face with tragedy.
 I woke at my usual ungodly hour, stumbled into the pantry, knocked over half of the pantry's contents, retrieved the coffee grounds, and proceeded to prepare my morning coffee.
 This is a ritual that has taken place for as long as I can remember, but this particular morning would place me in harms way.
 I heard a strange sound as I patiently waited for my black water brew, only to discover that the water I had poured into my miracle machine, was now waterfalling from the counter on to the floor.
 Game machine dead...what do I do? WHAT DO I DO!!!!!
I rigged up a little pour over thingy, like I've seen those bearded freaks do at those $4 a cup coffee shops, and managed to get through my day, but the evenings mission would be to procure a new miracle machine.
 Coffee machines have come a long way since I was last in the market for one.
I was lured in by the design and function of these machines. They have some that make one cup at a time, with these cute little containers of coffee grounds that you pop in and within seconds, you're sipping a hot cup of Joe....that's real cute, but I need one that can pop out 8 to 10 cups at a time.
 I saw one that I can sync to my IPAD...I'm not that lazy, nor do I want big brother to be aware of my coffee addiction.
 There was a kind chubby man, who was doing a product presentation of a beautiful, and very complicated looking machine. His sausage like hands did a ballet over the levers and buttons as he produced several different variations of coffee-ish drinks. He even let me try one (which was quite tasty). He sparked my interest like a drug dealer on the playground offering up the first bag of dope for "free". I came to find out that this wonderful machine doesn't actually make can make me an "Americano". OK, cool, can it make me 8 to 10 "Americano's"? No it can not and with a $799 price tag, Mr. Fatty-Fatty can go fuck himself.
 My quest landed me at Target, where sitting upon a mostly bare shelf, was a $15 coffee machine that looked pretty much exactly like the one that provided me with my morning crack for the last 5 years.
 But with all those cool fancy coffee machines (some of which that don't actually make coffee) I chose the machine that best represents ME.
 Simple, effective, functional, unwavering in it's directive.
I went to the shop Saturday morning to create a nice little rustic surrounding for my new doppelganger.
 Since me and this coffee machine are so much alike, it would only be fitting to surround it in a environment much like the one I have created for myself.
 I even let my son pick out a new coffee ground container for the top shelf so that I'm no longer destroying our pantry like a bull in a china shop.
 Even my son selected a container that falls in line with my inner redneck.
With this new machine, everything in the universe is once again aligned.  

Monday, March 14, 2016


For the past few months, we have been busier then we probably have ever been...which is a good thing.
 It's a good thing because in a not so far away past, what we did for fun and a creative outlet, transitioned into a business.
 In between all the builds that have taken place over the last few months, we have still made time to make little bullshit here and there just for the fuck of it.
 A coat rack, me and Zack made a couple different light sconce's, I made that little TV table, Zack is wrapping up a bad ass bench.
 You would think that after 10 hours a day, 6 days a week, the last thing one would wanna do  is build anything at all.
 I think the day that happens is going to be the day I hang my boots up.
Our work is like relationships.
 You meet a girl, you go out on some dates, you have a shit ton of fun, she slowly starts leaving her tooth brush, and her hair care products at your place until that day comes when she's full blown moved in.
 So now you 2 are shacked up, things are still fun and all, but shit starts to get real.
Splitting bills, cooking dinner, doing dishes, cleaning up after each other...but shit is still fun. You're still fucking all over the apartment like animals, palming her booty while she's making waffles, etc.
 Then she gets knocked up and shit gets really real...Now you're taking the kid to doctors appointments, changing shitty diapers, paying tuition, watching SHREK 700 times a day, going to soccer games, and all that other stuff.
 Here's the deal....if you aren't still palming the booty while she's making waffles, holding her hand when you walk through the mall, molesting each other every time the kid is out of ear shot...well then my friends, you can smile and wave at the passion when it pedals past you.
 Don't let the passion ride your bike. Passion is an asshole and it won't bring it back.
Me and Zack both have a laundry list in our heads of things we want to build for no particular reason at all.
 That list grows day by day.
As long as that list keeps getting longer, that means the longevity of our career gets longer as well.
 Another one of Zack's passion's is pimping out these old school bikes.
There are 2 at the shop now, and the other day my son got dropped off at the shop, so we hung up the tools and all 3 of us went and fucked around on the bikes.
 It was a great way to wrap up the week and let off a little steam.
Keep palming bootys.

Monday, March 7, 2016


The restaurant tables and booths are pretty much done.
 It's touch up's, tweaking, and install from here on out.
There are 2 aspects of this project that I'm very proud of.
 1. The fact that we took a very rustic concept and kept the design and the lines very clean.
 2. The fact that we took some of the shittiest wood on God's green earth and manipulated it into something fairly elegant.
 There is a silent 3rd factor, and that is the fact that we completed 6 restaurant booths and 3 custom tables in between doing 3 massive interior business build outs within 30 days.
 It's a situation where you would pat your team on the back and take everyone out for beers, but there is no's just me and Zack...we're not really touchy-feely kinda guys, so back patting each other would be really weird and uncomfortable.
 The other day, I'm coming home from work and I get a text from Laura that simply says "call me".
A "call me" text never means anything good like "hurry home, these giant steaks are almost done", or "remember that 3 way we were talking about...well..."
No, A "call me" text means the fucking dog died, or the house burnt down.
 So I immediately pull over and call her.
Her car got hit in front of our house as her and my son were going around a car that was double parked.
 No biggie, I chalk it up to city living and ask if Max was ok. She say's "no he's freaking out because the guy that hit me, got out of his car and was screaming at me".
  I'm gonna make a long and involved story short...There were neighbors watching this asshole hit her car and proceed to "mother fuck" this woman, MY woman, with a child who is terrified and hysterical in the back seat, and no one did shit. In fact, one guy got in his car and sped off and another slithered back in his house.
 This was on our block, these pussies see us everyday, and the one fuck who got in his car and sped off is a guy who is always mr. neighborhood guy who's screaming "hey buddy, how's it going?", "hey Max, how's school?!", "blah-blah-fuckitty blah". I'm going to deal with that piece of human shit, but that's not what this is about.
 If you see something that you know is wrong, and you do are subhuman.
This is a crazy world, with the deck stacked against all of us. We are all fighting some kind of battle, but god damn if we can stop being so fucking self absorbed for just one second, and just look out for each other.
 That's not reality, that's hope. Living in Chicago, hope can get you killed.
Hope the police show up? Hope a passerby will step up? Hope someone will save you?
 When the dust settled from the incident, I jumped on my computer and applied for a firearms owners ID for her.  Step 2 is she goes to conceal and carry classes and then gets her permit.
 She kinda fought me on it at first, but my rational was this..."you are a woman. You are the mother to my son. Your job is to protect this boy at all costs. In the world we live in, you are prey, you are a target, you are an easy kill. When you find yourself in a situation where you feel that you and our son are threatened, you will raise your firearm, you will give your assailant the chance to vacate, if they choose otherwise, you will empty that firearms contents into their skull, in which case we will get our son a therapist and you an attorney."
 That's what life has come to. That's the world our kids get to adapt to.
My mom didn't raise a pussy. I'll always help that old smelly lady put a case of bottled water in her shopping cart, or hold the door for whoever is walking in behind me, or let that guy who's holding a bottle of wine, a bouquet of flowers and a box of condoms jump in front of my loaded shopping cart at the check out line.
 I'll pull over and help push the car that died in the intersection, I'll step in when I see someone beating the shit out of their girlfriend, I'll speak up when I see a nerdy kid getting bullied.
 It doesn't make me special or a hero, it makes me human.