The Tempest

Not Exactly Shooting For \”Miss Congeniality\”

Final Incarnation…(this time I promise it’s the last time)

Posted by Daniel on Sunday, December 7, 2008

Due to the ginrmous traffic glut the redirect caused, I’m sending you to the following page…And I PROMISE there will not be any more “new sites”…after this…hehe:

Go to:

The New (and FINAL) Home Of The Tempest Online

The New (and FINAL) Home Of The Tempest Online


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This Blog Is Now Closed

Posted by Daniel on Friday, May 25, 2007

Now that the new website is up and running, this site will no longer be updated.

Please add the following link to your blogroll:

All of your links and mentions are now listed on the new site.

Many thanks for the support of this blog over the past 17 months…and we will strive to make The Tempest Online as interesting and informative.


Posted in Technical Issues | 2 Comments »

The Visit – Chapter 2

Posted by Daniel on Thursday, May 24, 2007

Never enough time…there’s just never enough time.

Yesterday (Wednesday) I drove my Mom and sister Tracie to the airport for their flight back to California. As I watched them boarding the plane, I was struck with a heavy dose of melancholy. I was missing them already, and it was all I could do to refrain from buying a ticket and flying out right behind them because I am, admittedly, a Momma’s Boy.

I’m Italian, so that’s to be expected.

This visit went pretty well, I think. Everyone was happy to be here and they even liked the house, including all of the recent renovations, both inside and out.

Steve and I did a good job of playing hosts and did everything we could to make my family feel welcome, relaxed and entertained.

As I’ve mentioned, the visit was two-fold. First my oldest brother, Terry and his wife Teresa (my BFF) were here Tuesday through Friday (of last week). Then my mom and youngest sister, Tracie, were here this past Sunday through Wednesday. While it would have been fantastic to have them all here at the same time, I was simply glad they were able to make it at tall.

Now, on to the meat and potatoes.

During Terry & Teresa’s time here, we had planned some things just for them. First, on Wednesday (again, last week) we wanted to treat them to dinner out. We took them to the 54th Street Grill here in Blue Springs. We were seated in a nice booth rather quickly and all was, for a time, going well. Terry and Steve were talking about something I wasn’t paying much attention to. Teresa was trying to concentrate on their conversation, but I was distracting her by taking as unflattering candid shots of her with my digital camera as I possibly could. What she didn’t know (until later that night) was that I was using the digital video mode…because Little Miss Polly Precious was being, shall we say, rather unladylike….and I wanted that moment saved for posterity.

Okay…I also wanted it for YouTube…just for future giggles. See the clip below…

Anyway, moments after our food arrived, this guy walks up to our table and specifically asked my brother if he might have accidentally gone into the wrong restroom. Naturally, we all started looking around, because we thought he was being punked. Far from it, actually. When Terry told the guy that he hadn’t left the booth since our arrival (a fact we all confirmed), we asked why the question had been asked. Here’s kinda how that went down:

Stranger: “Sir, would you mind if I asked you if you might have accidentally (his itallics) gone into the wrong restroom?”

Terry: “No. I’ve been here since we arrived. Why do you ask?”

Stranger: “Well, my daughter just came back to our table and she said that a man tried to open her stall in the ladies room.”

Terry: “Well, I can assure you, Sir, it wasn’t me. I haven’t left this table and don’t even know where the restrooms here are. I’m visiting from California.”

Stranger: “I asked her to point out the man, and she pointed to you. She said that the guy had on a blue baseball cap and pointed right to you.”

Teresa: “She was wrong, then, because my husband hasn’t left this table, just as he’s already told you.”

Stranger: “”Are you sure you didn’t mistakenly think you were in the men’s room?”

All of us: “He hasn’t left this table. Not once. Not at all. Period. Your daughter is mistaken.”

Stranger: “Well, these days you can’t be too careful. Are you sure you didn’t go into the Ladie’s Room by mistake? My five year old daughter was very scared and pointed right at you and described a blue cap.”

Terry: (by now, seething) “Listen, guy, how many times do I have to tell you, your daughter has made a mistake. It wasn’t me.”

Stranger: “I’m just trying to protect my little girl, Sir. She said it was you. Are you absolutely sure it wasn’t you?”

All of us: “IT WASN’T HIM!!!!!!!!”

This went on, back and forth, for over 15 minutes!! I was so afraid, knowing how Terry was a bit of a brawler in his youth, that he would lay down his knife and fork and throttle this concerned-yet-idiotic dad. Terry, however, has aged nicely and even this slid by without adding injury to insult.

It was bad enough that there were at least five or six others in that section of the joint also wearing blue baseball caps…and this guy didn’t ask not one of them about the restrooms. It was a bit more insulting that this guy’s 5 year old daughter said she recognized him from inside the stall…where the best view she would have had was through the crack between the stall door and wall. This fact, apparently, went right over concerned dads’ head.

In the end, though, it was pretty traumatic. A fact that I, being the ever-so-concerned bystander that I am, exploited to the hilt. When the waitress and manager arrived and heard what had happened, I flew into a Bette Davis rant. Utilizing what I’d once learned in the Growing-Up-Gay class “Drama Queen 101”, I clutched the imaginary pearls and expressed how traumatized I WAS over the ordeal and how I was one step away from fainting from sheer fright over the whole scandalous affair.

Side Note:  Drama Queen 101 is the perfect lesson when wanting to learn how to turn any (or every) situation around you into “How All Of This Affects ME”.

For example:  Lesson 16 – Your best friend has just broken up with his lover of 20 years.  Now, tell everyone how it affects YOU.

Oh yeah, it was Oscar-worthy.

Net result of the evening…

  1. Terry was vindicated because A) he was innocent and B) even the waitress said that Terry never moved from his seat.
  2. We received 20% taken off of our total bill AND one full meal comped.

Guess which meal was comped? MINE!!!

The irony of my meal being the one we got for free wasn’t enough for me, as it turned out. I also remember telling the waitress that I was so shocked and hurt that Terry didn’t get his meal comped that I might pass out right there at her feet. Adding…

“…but a free desert would make it all better…”

…To be continued tomorrow…

Posted in Family | Leave a Comment »

We’re Baaaaaaaack!!!

Posted by Daniel on Thursday, May 24, 2007

Okay, I know that the posts here have gotten a bit thin of late, but now that the family visits are over, I can actually get back online and fill you all in.

There are tons of pictures I have that need to be posted and, as is always the case, several really funny stories to go with them.

But that will begin tonight, as I have a meeting with the mayor today and then am to be sworn in of the Parks & Recreation Board of Directors this afternoon.  So I won’t get online until late this afternoon.

Will be back tonight.

Stay tuned…

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The Visit – Phase One

Posted by Daniel on Friday, May 18, 2007

It’s hard to believe…two have come and gone…two are yet to come on Sunday.

My oldest brother, Terry and his wife (my BFF), Teresa, were seen off at the airport today, on their way to Arkansas for my nephew’s graduation.

Two and one half days of laughs and catching up.  Now just a memory.  It’s always over too dang fast.

Now, Steve and I get 36 hours of rest, before my mom and youngest sister arrive on Sunday.

This one is short…because I need sleep!!!  But I will write about it all (there have already been some rather odd and funny events so far) next week.  Between now and then, I’ll just keep posting some of the pictures as we take them.

Talk to you next week…


Terry & Daniel

Terry & Teresa

Terry, Teresa & Steve


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Six Months For One Week

Posted by Daniel on Monday, May 14, 2007

Well, it’s here. The final countdown. Twenty-four hours until the first plane lands to deliver the first wave of family visitors.

For the next eight days, this newly-redone house will play host to a long-overdue family reunion, of sorts.

First my brother and sister in-law…then my Mom and youngest sister.

I’m about as nervous as I can possibly be and have had precious little sleep since last Friday. I mean, will it all be worth it? All the hard work we’ve done to and around the house – a project that we’ve worked our asses off for over six months – will be put to the comfort test…at long last.

You know how when your relatives (the nice ones anyway) will tell you that you don’t need to make a big fuss over their coming to visit?

“We’re just coming to see you…it doesn’t matter what the house looks like. Don’t go putting yourselves out just for us.”

Uh huh.

Like we’re not going to make the place as palatial as we possibly can. AS IF!!!

Hellllloooo!!! What kind of gays would we be if we didn’t put all of those hours spent drooling in front of the TV soaking in each delicious episode of Martha Stewart…and then not putting it all to good use??? Guuurrrllll…is you crazy?? Martha would catch lavender-scented wind of that faux pas and smack us with a nicely dried asparagus centerpiece and then personally shred our gay cards into a lovely potpourri dish.

I’ll be honest…we’ve worked tirelessly for over six months on project after project, and we still didn’t get everything done that we’d hoped we would. Oh, the inside is pretty much where we figured it would be (though I didn’t have time to redo the main bathroom as I’d planned). But all the outside planting just didn’t have time to get done. For this and next week, we’re on nature’s good graces to provide the aesthetic background of wildflowers, crabgrass and overgrown perennials.

On the upside of that, I did manage to put together the ginormous brand-spanking-new shiny silver gas bar-b-que grill we bought to replace the old faithful (yet o-l-d) charcoal grill we’d had for years. I did that all by little self…no help. Which was no small feat, considering the makers neglected to provide two very crucial screw holes that were to support the main gas line. No problem, now that I know how to use a power drill. I just hope no one notices when I run the second it’s turned on for the first time. But hey, that’s what big butch brothers are for, right?

Anyway, I’ve been looking forward to this visit more than the normal trips I take to California to visit them. As this is the very first time member of my family have visited Missouri…ever. And it looks as though we will have perfect weather for whatever we all decide to do. Especially sitting out on the deck and sipping mimosa’s…or whatever.

Well, wish us luck as we play hostess (Twinkie & Snowball) and we’ll keep a light on for ya.

Posted in Our Writings | 1 Comment »

Brownback Fumbles…Then He Mumbles.

Posted by Daniel on Sunday, May 13, 2007

Note to Sen. Sam Brownback: In Packerland, it’s not cool to diss Brett Favre.The GOP presidential hopeful drew boos and groans Friday at the Wisconsin Republican Party convention when he used a football analogy to talk about the need to focus on families.

“This is fundamental blocking and tackling,” he said. “This is your line in football. If you don’t have a line, how many passes can Peyton Manning complete? Greatest quarterback, maybe, in NFL history.”

Oops, wrong team to mention in Wisconsin, once described by Gov. Tommy Thompson as the place “where eagles soar, Harleys roar and Packers score.”

Realizing what he had said, the Kansas Republican slumped at the podium and put his head in his hands.

“That’s really bad,” he said. “That will go down in history. I apologize.”

His apology brought a smattering of applause and laughter. He tried to recover, saying former Packer Bart Starr may be the greatest of all time, but the crowd was still restless.

“Let’s take Favre then,” Brownback said. “The Packers are great. I’m sorry. How many passes does he complete without a line?”

“All of them!” more than one person yelled from the back.

“I’m not sure how I recover from this,” Brownback said. “My point is we’ve got to rebuild the family. I’ll get off this.”

Posted in Media Matters, Politics | Leave a Comment »

May I Suggest Crawford, Texas?

Posted by Daniel on Friday, May 11, 2007

vltr_lg.gifTexas State University’s plan to build the nation’s largest “body farm” of cadavers is on hold over concerns that buzzards could endanger nearby planes.The university’s scrapped its proposed site and began scouting a new location for what would be only the third body farm in the United States. The farms are used by scientists who bury cadavers to study human decomposition to help police better determine the time and manner of death at crime scenes.

Texas State had hoped to begin burying bodies later this year on a 17-acre (6.9-hectare) site on Texas Highway 21 near the San Marcos Municipal Airport. But after meeting with the airport’s commission Tuesday, the university dropped the plan out of concern that buzzards would pose a risk to pilots.

“While the increased risk might be very small, it cannot be completely eliminated, and we cannot go forward with the Highway 21 site,” Texas State provost Perry Moore said.

Plans for the site included a razor-wire fence around the property, vulture-proof cages to protect exposed bodies and a 70-foot (21.3-meter) grass buffer around the site to absorb rain runoff.

The University of Tennessee at Knoxville has operated a body farm since 1980. Western Carolina University in Cullowhee, North Carolina, opened the nation’s second such facility last year.

Posted in Just For Fun | Leave a Comment »

Spread Too Thin

Posted by Daniel on Wednesday, May 9, 2007

I wear too many hats.I think it’s very possible that I have something in common with Queen Elizabeth II.

I mean aside from the obvious punchline. Besides, I’m too young to be a Queen…Princess yes, Queen no.

Like Her Royal Hinie, I also wear too many hats. Mine, however, are figurative…while hers are just plain fab-u-lous!!

See, just yesterday, I received an email announcing the following:


I am happy to report your appointment to the Parks and Recreation Board of Directors was approved by the City Council last night. You will receive a packet in the mail sometime around the end of this month with the agenda for the meeting on June 6th.

Thanks again for serving our City.”

[Signature of City Official]

This was, to say the least, quite a surprise. I honestly thought they were joking with me when I was informed that the City Council had given my name to the mayor as someone they were recommending for the position. This, it seems, comes on the heels of a very productive first quarter with regard to the work being done in my subdivision.

Another hat.

As it happens, a City Councilman lives in the same subdivision as I do. There used to be two of them living here, but one moved to a smaller home for health-related reasons.

This subdivision, like most others nowadays, has a Homeowners Association.  Now, for those of you who don’t know, these Associations consist of at least 100+ homes (members), a Board of Directors and Officers (President, V.P., Treasurer and Secretary).  For the past three years, I’ve been serving as President.

I’m sure I’ve mentioned this little snippet of trivia before, but at the risk of stroking my own ego, I figured it bared repeating.

Now bear in mind, this ain’t no paying gig.  The rewards are few and the challenges – not to mention the hard work involved – are many.  While my position mainly requires me to oversee operations, it often finds me up to my neck in the actual labor of whatever task is at hand at the moment.  To say that this is a full-time “job” would not be an exaggeration.  And I have discovered, in many cases the hard way, that you just can’t please all the people all the time.  But I won’t go into all of that here.

For the past three years, we’ve made great strides in bringing this 35 year old subdivision into the modern times.  Many of the homeowners here have been here since day-one, and many of them aren’t too happy with change.  They’ll gripe a bit (3 AM phone calls prove that) about this or that current project, but I’ve become quite adept at getting them to see the upside of things in the end.

Anyway, I think this may be the reason my name was brought to the Mayor’s attention when the position on the P & R Board opened up.  Maybe they think I am just bursting with ideas and can bring fresh ideas and perspective (their words) by being on that Board.

I don’t mind telling you (as I told them), I don’t know the first thing about Parks and Recreation oversight.  I do know that it includes oversight of all city property (land & buildings), which oversees about 60% of a city’s annual budget.  But Parks?  Recreation?  I’ve lived in this city for over 5 years now and I have yet to go to one of the parks here.  And to date, the closest thing I’ve found to ‘Recreation’ here is the drive-thru at McDonald’s.

Not that there is no recreation here…

I’ve just been a little too busy to enjoy any of it.

Wish me luck…I’ll need it.

Posted in Our Writings | Leave a Comment »

Listen To Your Filthy Mouth!!!

Posted by Daniel on Monday, May 7, 2007

That’s Fucking Life, Ain’t It?Well, it’s official. I have a problem with words. Not actually speaking them…rather I tend to use the more colorful ones a lot more than I thought.

Subconsciously – that’s my story and I’m sticking to it – I never really knew just how much I cuss when I get worked up.

And, I’ve come to realize, I have offended certain people with my filthy words. While I don’t actually intend to hurt anyone’s sensitivities, apparently I’m a pro at it, nonetheless.

Is there anyone out there who knows a good method of keeping the cussing down to a bare fucking minimum?? Seriously, because this shit seems to be pissing off a lot of assholes!!

That last sentence really only applies to the arsetards who email me to tell me that I “cuss too much” in my posts.

Hmmm…I never really thought it was that fucking noticeable. I suppose I really should explain my language to those nice folks, right?

So here’s how I see it…

The whole time I was growing up, I tended to be very introverted. Actually, I think ‘meek’ more suits the picture of me as a tadpole. Really, in a family with eight kids, it was hard being heard or even getting noticed for that matter.

Oh, I’d get noticed when it came time to be punished for something (or nothing…but that’s a story for another time). And again, with seven siblings I’d even get punished for things I didn’t do because I was too much of a wuss to deny that I had done what my sibs did, and then blamed me for.

Make no mistake, I was no angel when I was young…I had my share of childhood high crimes and misdemeanors. 😉

Basically, though, I was pretty quiet and tried to stay off the bad influence radar. And all those years of silence left an imprint on me that I eventually (through therapy – picture Diane Keaton in “The First Wives Club”) shed that skin of silence.

Boy, did I EVER?!?

Now you are hard pressed to shut me the hell up!!

No Fucking Cussing, Damnit!!!

Somewhere along the line, though, I not only learned to open up verbally, but my language seems to have taken on a much bluer hue than I would have dreamed it would. Don’t get me wrong, I know how to keep a civil tongue in all the right social settings. But get me riled up or liquored up (tee hee) and I suddenly become Mr. Fucking Tourette’s Syndrome.

This also occurs when I’m confronted with a minivan. Any minivan. Even one that is parked and empty.

Fucking piece of shit minivans!!!

Of course, I could just blame it all on that cable TV company…

Posted in Just For Fun | 4 Comments »