2011 Wrap Up

So, it is New Year’s Eve and the clock says 9 PM (mountain standard time, for those who need to know) and I’m sure that everyone expects me to be heading out the door with the wife, kids, and dog out to experience the legendary Loveland clubbing scene.  But no, I’ve got other plans.  For example, just to get the evening ball rolling, I have upgraded WordPress on my newfunny.com website from version 3.2 to version 3.3.  Next on the agenda, view the annual stats WordPress was nice enough to send me.

So, according to WordPress, my website was viewed roughly 8,200 times in 2011.  Now don’t get me started about how to measure how many people visit your website in a given time period.  OK, you talked me into it– you see, I could log onto my goDaddy account and download every single http request and tell you that number is how many people looked at my site, but that would count a whole bunch of stuff (like automated processes that are looking to index information on my site) that has nothing do with actual people looking at my site.  As far as I can tell, WordPress seems to give a more accurate gauge of actual people.  And really, there are more methods of calculating web traffic than there are ways to deep fry a Snickers bar, so take anything anyone says about it with a grain of salt.  And then, of course, then you can try sprinkling it on your deep fried Snickers bar, which I hear is surprisingly tasty.

“Omar, what are the top viewed posts on your website in 2011?” you were probably just thinking to yourself.  Well, here is the top 5:

I’m pretty happy with these results, but I do want to give a shout out to a few of my long time favorites that don’t get as much traffic as I think they deserve.

That is the most interesting information from the WordPress report. A little known fact about the “Dukes of Hazzard” and “Iron Chef Amsterdam” is that I was approached by an editor of an out-of-state Marijuana magazine about republishing these stories due to their pro-pot themes.  I gave them permission, but then they went out of business.  As far as I know they weren’t ever published in any magazines, but since I wasn’t going to get any money for it either way I didn’t really look too hard.

That about wraps things up.  One more thing now that I remember we are back to “standard time”: although I have decided that part of my 2024 Congressional campaign is going to include a push for moving to daylight savings time all year round.  Mostly because I hate delivering packages at UPS in the dark in December when I see the sunrise an hour before I go to work.  I think there is a better chance of getting Congress to change the system of time than to get UPS to change the times it flies all their planes around the country.  Although now I think about it, maybe it seems like a 50/50 proposition.  But in the end, the only people who benefit from the current system are peppy morning people, and nobody likes those types– especially when sunlight is in short supply.  So full time daylight savings time it is!

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Christmas Letters

2011 Christmas Letter

Wow, it is that time of year again.  It seems like just yesterday I started my first attempt to write my 2011 Christmas letter.  Maybe it was, or maybe that was three months ago.  You see I have two kiddos now, so I’ve kind of lost track of time for anything less pressing than someone screaming right next to my ears at the top of their lungs for reasons sometimes totally unapparent to me.  And now that includes several people besides myself.

So the first place to start is the birth of my second daughter, Samantha Rose Lutfey.  Born May 24, 2011, Samantha came into this world with 25% more hair than I had that day.  The surgical team had to rush her off to the neonatal barbershop before they would let Katherine hold her newborn child.  As was the case with Isabel’s birth, I looked stunning in the white sterile body suit I wore during the birthing procedure.  To be honest, I think my perfect figure was a bit of a distraction to some of the nurses.  Either that or they were worried I was going to pass out and topple over some vital and expensive piece of medical equipment.  Who can know for sure?  And for the record I came close to passing out zero times that day, which is one less than my first time around.

The next thing I can remember is competing in the annual Kinetics race.  Held at Longmont’s Union reservoir, my team was named “The Prime Contenders.”  The craft was a slight modification from previous attempts with Styrofoam wheels connected to a bicycle frame.  This year marked a personal milestone in that I actually finished the race.  And I had the support of pretty much nobody in the crowd.  About 79% of the crowd didn’t think my craft would even float in the water.  The remaining crowd watched me in the water and thought my right front wheel (which, to be honest, was hanging on to the rest of the craft in a rather precarious manner) was going to fall off any second now.  And, really, the highlight of the event is witnessing a hastily assembled craft half sink in the middle of the water section.  So to all of those people who keep telling me that PVC pipe is not a good structural material for a kinetics craft, I can now proudly yell out “PVC pipe can be a MARGINALLY ACCEPTABLE structural material, PROVIDED that I don’t hit any unexpected rocks, AND that I don’t make any sudden movements out of the exact center of gravity of the vehicle, AND, WELL OF COURSE IT GOES WITHOUT SAYING that the Kinetics Wizard doesn’t cast any spells of random destruction on any part of my team.”  Or, in short, “Bite me– I made it!”

So I either had a very strange dream and/or was visited by aliens a few weeks back.  To the best of my recollection, here is what went down.

So I’m standing around in a field for no particular reason, and a traditionally shaped alien saucer ship lands nearby.  Two green creatures get out and move towards me.

“Greetings Omar,” one of the aliens proclaims. “We have some information which could be immensely useful to your spices regarding the nature of what you understand to be the cosmos.”

“Hold on,” I replied, “Should I be writing this down or recording this all on video?”

“No need for that, our message will be brief.” the other visitor explained.  “First of all, your scientific community still can’t decide on the nature of light.  Is it a particle or is it a wave?  Nobody has come up with a good explanation that is consistent with real world observations.  So here is the answer:  Light is a particle that travels in a corkscrew pattern.  Technically it is spinning around four dimensions– electical, magnetic, one space dimension, and another dimension you haven’t quite discovered yet.”

“OK, I’ll get the word out.”  I answered. “Anything else?”

“One more thing,” the first alien spoke. “Most people in your scientific community believe in the Big Bang theory based on red shift patterns observed from extra-terrastial light sources.  Did you ever think that the particles are getting slowed down by all the dark matter in the universe instead of everything expanding in every direction?”

“So why are you telling me all this?” I asked, “There are plenty of other humans who would be better equipped to pass on this information.  I’m just a UPS driver.”

“We know– won’t it be funny that you know the truth about the nature of the universe but nobody will believe you due to your chosen vocation?” the first alien explained.  They both started laughing uncontrollably as they moved back into their spaceship and flew away.

Maybe this is what I get for watching the Simpsons’ “Tree House of Horror” and “How the Universe Was Made” right before going to bed.

So now that I think about it, I did get quite a bit done this year.  So here is a list of things I didn’t finish:

Steet performance:  Rounded to the nearest integer, I can safely say I achieved 0% of my goal to create a trumpet, baritone, and tuba comedy street performing group.  Besides a lot of random ideas floating around in my head I still need to acquire all the musical instruments and at least two musically inclined individuals for my team.  And, of course someone who can arrange music would be helpful.  Maybe I’ll make more progress on this in the future.

My 2024 run for congress is another area in which I did not make much progress.  The first step I’m going to take is to shoot Botox into one side of my forehead so that I can do that cool eyebrow raising thing just like Stephen Colbert on “The Colbert Report.”  The next item on the list is to decide my stance on critical issues such as deceptive bacon packaging, Tupperware lid standardization, and, of course, synchronizing with the rest of the world by switching over to the metric system and possibly Esperanto.

So that is about it for 2011.  I’ll leave you with the age old saying from my favorite novelty Christmas song:  What Can You Get a Wookiee for Christmas (When He Already Owns a Comb)?