Yip Yip Family

Most of my generation who grew up in front of public television remember Sesame Street and its host of memorable characters: Big Bird, Kermit the Frog, Elmo, Bert & Ernie, Cookie Monster, Grover, Oscar the Grouch, The Count… Who can forget such gems as “It’s Not Easy Being Green” or “C is for Cookie” or “Rubber Ducky?”

As fun as it is to wax nostalgic with Sesame Street, I can’t say that I really enjoyed the show that much as a child. I was terribly averse to anything that felt like learning disguised as entertainment. My fondest memories from the show actually come from some of the more obscure characters such as the Martians, a.k.a. the Yip Yips.tumblr_mjtvxkvoiT1qb5gkjo1_500

The premise behind the Yip Yips was to teach kids about the properties of certain objects by looking at them from an alien perspective. Although this concept was by no means new or revolutionary, the Yip Yips were able to pull it off in a way that still makes me laugh today.

These were probably the simplest puppets ever featured on Sesame Street, controlled by only a pair of sticks. Yet I remember quoting them back and forth with my dad for years after, well into my teens.

Thanks to the wonder that is YouTube and some other kind souls who apparently thought the Yip Yips were worthy of preservation, my kids have now become subject to my crazy sense of humor.

So now, we’ve found ourselves going around in public saying dumb things like, “Book say Earth person have hands!” And the little ones oblige me by replying with the obligatory, “Yip yip yip yip yip!” It’s a strange feeling, to say the least – I’m so proud of them for having such offbeat senses of humor, but I worry that I’m going to make them as nuts as I am.

Unfortunately, Tabitha is not immune. While digging around for Yip Yip videos, we found one with a Yip Yip family singing a cute song that I didn’t seem to remember from my childhood. Of course, it didn’t take long before we all knew the words and started singing it back and forth, because it embedded itself in our heads. It’s getting as bad as Bananaphone was at first.

So, if you happen to see us over the holidays or any other time in the future reciting some ridiculousness back and forth, please don’t be alarmed. Don’t start making your way to the nearest exit while pretending to take an important phone call – all the while dialing 9-1-1. Just ask us what movie or show we’re quoting and we’ll happily show you what’s so darn funny on the nearest available interweb portal.

For more Yip Yip hijinks, check out what happens when they find a radio, a fan, a computer, and Planet Earth.

The Undeading

Well it seems I have found myself in the process of bringing this place back to life and up to date. Unfortunately, most of my time today has been spent upgrading WordPress to the most current version.

WL8509_skeletonClosetI began the restoration process by snagging myself a shiny new domain name, calculating8.com, and redirecting it to the appropriate subdomain on synthetik.org, calculating8.synthetik.org. I plan to eventually have the .com domain hosted instead of redirecting to a subdomain, but I need to upgrade my hosting plan in order to do so. We’ll be saving that for another day.

In addition, I have consolidated all my posts between my two blogs and placed them all back on KodyMyers.NET. I’m planning on taking C8 in a different direction – as soon as I figure out what it is.

Anyway, I suppose the software wanted to teach me a lesson for neglecting it so long. Upgrading has never taken me more than 10 minutes, but this time I ended up spending at least 5 hours trying to figure out why my redirect wasn’t operating correctly. I couldn’t tell if it was a bad .htaccess file, an invalid database entry, or problem with the DNS not propagating itself. After eliminating the culprit down to WordPress, I found that a canonical URL feature had been implemented in version 2.3 that had apparently wreaked havoc on several peoples’ blogs that used redirects or customized permalink structures.

At any rate, it’s behind me now, though I’ve lost half a day getting it all configured. I’m starting to remember why I burned out maintaining this site. Maintenance is a menial chore if there ever was one.

More to come soon, I hope.

That’s a Lot of Engines

I was always taught that no matter what kind of job I’m doing, I give it my best. I never quite understood the wisdom of this until I got my first job with a steady paycheck. The commonly held belief is that there is no need to care too much about doing a good job when you’re flipping burgers, mowing yards, jockeying a register, shoveling horse crap, or any one of the many other menial tasks that people find themselves doing for that weekly paycheck.

While working nearly every job I’ve ever had, I’ve observed coworkers doing the absolute bare minimum necessary to keep their jobs. Not surprisingly, many of them were students. Still being a student myself, I understand that holding down a job while trying to keep your grades up is a monumental task, especially when also trying to balance a personal life into the equation.

What these people do not realize is that such jobs can teach valuable life lessons that will stick with them well into the future when they get their “real” jobs. If employees can’t even expend the small amount of extra effort needed to excel in a “crap” job, how in the world can they expect to perform well in the jobs of with important responsibilities?

If only employers could see first-hand how prospective employees perform in a position of little responsibility, I would imagine they could save themselves a great deal of wasted time and training.

Anyway, I seem to have strayed from the point of this post.

My current job may not be as important as others, but I still take pride in what I do. Our fiscal year at the Murray Briggs and Stratton plant ended today with a record four million engines produced. Another notable milestone is the fifty million engines produced from the plant since it opened.

I estimate that only 150,000 or so of those engines were an indirect result of my efforts, but it’s still kinda neat to know I was a part of it. We even got some nifty shirts to commemorate our achievements with!

The plant shuts down for two weeks at the end of each fiscal year for cleaning and maintenance. Since we produced so well this year, we shut down early and my last day was Monday. Woo!