Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Another meme

I stole this from the incomparable Katie Schwartz, and then coincidentally got tagged to do it by Eebie.

1. Ten years ago, what were you doing?

Finishing my first year of law school. Sweating over my Civil Procedure final. Heinous class, and it was year-long so I had to remember shit from back in September. I got a B-minus which in law school is pretty much like an F-plus.

2. Five things on today's to-do list

a. Call back this customer who wanted to know something about our products (not done)

b. Call back one of my regional sales managers (done and it was a really annoying conversation)

c. Go pick up some pain meds from the pharmacy (not done but very much looking forward to it, even though I'm not in pain)

d. Sort through work email that came in while I was out of town (not done)

e. Find new customers to sell shit to (not done)

3. Several things I'd do if I were a billionaire

a. Donate to a lot of worthy causes. (Ok, so everyone knows I have to say that first or else I'm some kind of asshole, right? If I were as noble as Katie I'd enumerate them, but the way I see it there is so much suffering in the world I am not sure right now which projects would take priority.)

b. If I came into this money suddenly I'd put it all in the name of a trust so that I would remain anonymous about it.

c. Buy real estate in several places around the world where I want to live part time.

d. Found some kind of non-profit and staff it with people I know and trust to run it well. I'd pay them handsomely too.

e. Throw fabulous parties all over the world and fly our favorite people there to party with us.

f. Do volunteer work and take language classes.

4. Three bad habits

a. Procrastination

b. Obsessing over pointless shit

c. Snapping at people when I'm under stress

5. Five places I've lived

a. South Dakota

b. Minnesota

c. Illinois

d. California

e. Washington DC

6. Five jobs I've had

a. Piano teacher

b. The guy who scrapes up all sorts of shit from the floor of a meatpacking plant

c. Telephone survey operator -truly a job from hell

d. Cocktail waiter - making money while smoking and drinking is the way to go if you ask me

e. Large New York firm attorney - hell on Earth

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Real Interviews with Bloggers: Dale + CP August 23, 2007

Not to be outdone by Bubs, Dale emailed me some interview questions last August. So as not to make him wait an entire year as did Bubs, I am now getting started on these - and it's only May!

1. You have quite a musical household on the go. Apart from your piano and George's clarinet, do either of you play other instruments or compose? What are the odds of getting Mama Gin up on top of the piano a la Michelle Pfeiffer in The Fabulous Baker Boys for a video blog?
Both George and I have extensive musical backgrounds. I started on the violin at age 6, when my dad used to teach the Suzuki method to young kids. My real love became the piano soon thereafter, however, and I played semi-seriously through the end of college. I always wanted to try a wind instrument but never got around to it. I didn't get this lazy without years of practicing my procrastination.

George started the clarinet in 7th grade and always loved it as well. He plays some piano but never had any formal training. He plays several varieties of clarinet, including the bass clarinet featured in this Mama Gin video.

Although George is the professional musician in the house, I am the only composer (though George has dabbled a bit too.) My genre is pop. Schlocky pop. My songs all kind of suck, but here are the titles. Tell me which one will make the top 40:

The Change
Goodbye (v. melodramatic)

Hawaii 1998 (I cry whenever I try to play it; is that retarded or what?)

The Good Son (stupid title, though it is mine)
Change of Heart
Rodeo Cowboy (really stupid song but I kind of like it. Lyrics are not mine.)
A Whisper in Time (stupidest song and title ever. Not mine.)
Falls on You
All I Gave You Was Nothing

Midnight Love

All of the music is my own. I also wrote all of the lyrics on Hawaii 1998, The Good Son, Falls on You, All I Gave You Was Nothing and Midnight Love. The lyrics to the other songs were either collaborative or taken entirely from a lyricist. It's true that coming up with the lyrics is the hardest part of writing music.

I also do a fair amount of arranging. I am asked to play for weddings quite often. If you are very close to me I will do it out of guilt but I won't enjoy it. Among other things, it means I can't drink at the rehearsal dinner for fear that I won't play well the next day at the wedding. If anyone asks me to play and I am not close to them, I will say no.

Next weekend George and I are providing all the music at my cousin's wedding, and I did all the arranging. The bride requested "Just Like Heaven" by The Cure, so I wrote an arrangement of it for piano, clarinet and cello. It's going to be very frightening. (Post wedding-note: it went very well, but still sounded like Muzak.)

Mama Gin would LOVE to collaborate with us. She used to come in to the apartment, sit down at the piano for about an hour and two-finger plunk out the melody to "Silent Night." Every now and again she sits down on the piano bench next to Poor George and "instructs" him. I need to capture that on video.

2. At one point, you were hoping to branch out into producing Cheesy Made for TV Movies with Mindy June. Does the dream still live? If so, please provide a title and pitch. You are aware that things haven't been going so well in the career or talent department for Shannen Doherty lately, right?
"Does the dream still live?" When have we EVER let a dream die over here at CPW, Dale? Do you kiss your mother with that mouth of yours?

Although Mindy and I have not discussed titles or themes for several years, the dream is still alive and well - and now that Mindy is looking for work the time may be ripe.

Last she and I were cooking up something along these lines, it was a sitcom. It was going to be like a "Friends" but much more edgy, with characters taken from our real life circle of acquaintances. Whenever we would meet to flesh out the characters and themes, though, Mindy would invariably spend 90% of the time talking about all the hilarious things her character was going to do. Soon I grew resentful, and stopped participating.

Hey, maybe that can be the theme. What should we call it? Fags and Hags?

3. Gordon Ramsay is coming to dinner. What culinary delights would you serve and what type of new cocktail would be most appropriate for the occasion?
If Gordon were coming for dinner, George would be required to cook. Although I have become a much better cook over the past decade based on techniques I have picked up from my very own resident chef, I would not have the cahones to cook for a Food TV star (except for Rachael Ray, of course.)

I would, however, ply him with cocktails. (See this story for an example.) In fact, let me take this opportunity to answer a question posed to me over a year ago by Lulu during her award winning interview with me: "You are known far and wide as a mixologist without peer. If you were to make me a "Coaster Punchman," what would be in it, and how would it be served?"

I have finally made my decision. I can't take full credit for this cocktail, as a version of it was first served to me at the now-defunct Fez Cafe in New York. It is a delicious combination of vodka, Cointreau, fresh lime and Chambord, shaken over ice and served straight up in a martini glass. Since I can't locate a recipe for their old cocktail anywhere on the Internets, I am now claiming it as my own and will serve one to any of my Gentle Readers upon demand - provided you come over or invite me to your house.

4. If you had to appear as a contestant or a panelist on a game show, past or present, which would it be?
Let me qualify this by saying I hate game shows. I think they are a huge waste of time. That being said, there are several likely candidates. Of course any of the shows that would allow me to make sarcastic comments would be eligible. The Dr. Phil Show comes to mind immediately. Or maybe Judge Judy.

5. I'm always too frightened to make use of those 'need a penny, take a penny' containers like the one at my Korean Bagel Lady's shop and would rather overpay than make correct change. Sometimes there are even one and two dollar coins in there which must be some sort of trick. Do you use them?
First off, please quit touting that stupid Korean wench in your pathetic efforts to combat the popularity of The Mama Gin Files. Everyone knows that I, Coaster Punchman, have cornered the market on finding humor in the mocking of elderly Asian women with limited English language skills. Step off, bitch.

Second, what is it with you Canadian, Europeans and everyone else on the damn globe with using the higher value coins instead of bills? Don't y'all know what a pain in the ass it is to walk around jingling like some two-bit whore due to all the loose change you have to hold in your pocket?

Go back to dollar bills like sensible people. Yes, we Americans have flirted with such travesties as the Susan B. and the Sacajawea dollars, only to enrich the pockets of hundreds of newsstand vendors who receive grosses of them in error from people who think they are handing over quarters. Until the people revolt and stop using them.

But I digress. Yes, I do use those things and in fact just used one yesterday when I removed four (4!) pennies from one without the slightest wince from the counter clerk. All I can say is, live dangerously, Dale. It's much more fun.

Bonus Question: Am I insane? Bonus answer: I don't know. Take this quiz and let me know how you do.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Ready for Spring yet?

In anticipation of the finer weather we soon will be experiencing, enjoy this virtual yard party featuring George's homemade corn chowder and lobster rolls, accompanied by lots of great champagne and wine, courtesy of Im and Em.

Friday, May 16, 2008

The Return of CP's Top 40 - part 4

Welcome back to CP's Top 40! I have lost count of my current blogroll so, stalkees, bear with me as we are going to continue referring to it as CP's Top 40.

About a year ago CPW went alphabetical in its blogroll system, causing not a small amount of consternation from blogs with names low in the alphabet, some of whom felt they deserved a more privileged spot on the list by virtue of the tenure of their place in my life or by their lack of a gag reflex, or sometimes both.

Nonetheless, it should comfort my Gentle Readers to know that CP is not so easily manipulated by the press, and that only a few specific types of bribery will work to move any particular stalkee out of his or her proper place in line.

Today we continue honoring our list of stalkees, beginning with those who joined since the last edition of CP's Top 40 was published.

Anandamide. Fire in the sky. Not sure why he chose that name, which Wikipedia defines as "an endogenous cannabinoid neurotransmitter found in animal and human organs, especially in the brain." Yah, right. Anyway, Anandamide's blog features a popular "Homoerotic Friday" series where readers are encouraged to submit homoerotic pictures of classic rock musicians. I support this, and applaud him for posting my picture of Eminem even though he's not "classic rock."

Bells On. I've been stalking Vikkitikkitavi much longer than she's been on my blogroll, and we had a great heart-to-heart in person last winter at a blogger gathering in Chicago about the philosophies and politics behind linking. We each ordered another cocktail to celebrate our mutual understanding that there are those who link because they love you, while there are those who link because they themselves want a link. I assured her I linked because I love her. She has contributed some of the most biting political commentary not only on her own blog, but in the comment sections of others such as CPW.

Better Living Through Bacon. This girl is delightful beyond delights. I chuckle out loud each time I stop over at her place, which is not often enough. Every time I go to her blog (and several of you enjoy this status with me) I think "shit, she is so funny, I have to start dropping by twice a day." She recently reported that her laptop has shit on her, so you might want to drop by and pay your respects - maybe with some Wet Ones or something to help clean up the mess.

Bliss and Bile. Holy shit, I just realized that if I'm only now getting to Chelene, I really haven't paid attention to this little blogroll project in some time. Chelene is awesome. Her snippets are often short, to the point and very amusing - in other words, perfect for a borderline retarded Punchman with the attention span God gave a watermelon. Plus we are real life friends, and all the straight boys I know are out to get into her... oh well, never mind - family blog here! Search my blog for her name and you'll find an awesome video starring hers truly. NOTE: I just discovered that I did indeed already cover Chelene in a previous post. Oh well baby, enjoy even more of the spotlight!

Gifted Typist is a relative newcomer to the CPW family, though I have noticed her stalking our American Idolatry blog more than once. She has the honor of being a real-life writer for a Halifax newspaper, which endears her to me since Nova Scotia is where Poor George and I first got together. Magical place. I would encourage you to check out both her blog and her professionally published writing such as this article where she very meanly snubs Skipper, Barbie's flat chested little sister. The nerve!

Gifts from a Broad proves the mutual point that Vikki and I made regarding linkage: if I like you enough, I will link to you even though you don't link to me. And I won't even be bitter about it. Not really. At least not right away. What were we talking about again? Oh yeah, I remember when I first discovered her, I must have read about 20 posts in a row and laughed my ass off a good percentage of the time. Check her out.

Happy to Be from Iowa - Mnmom, as she calls herself, is another one of those good writers from the Melinda June circle of Iowa friends. Her blog is a pleasing mixture of humor, politics and snippets from everyday life to help us all keep it real. She may be interested to know that Poor George, while not being from Iowa, was very happy to visit Iowa with me this Christmas and was very charmed by Decorah. He even told me he thinks his oldest brother is jealous that George got to go somewhere as exotic as Iowa. I'm serious.

He Had No Identifying Characteristics. MichaelG has known Melinda June even longer than I, which is not easy to say in this world. I met him a few times years and years ago and will perhaps cross paths with him again one day. But for now, blogland is our sandbox. He's funny. Check him out.

Monkey Muck. Dr. Monkey von Monkerstein is a blogger popular with the political and irreverent types. I particularly like it when he gets bitchy and also when he sticks it to the right wingers who I have to agree are ruining (some would say have ruined) this country. Plus he let me win a contest over at his place and sent me a coolio postcard as a prize. It's on my mom's refrigerator.

Ok Fine, Whatever! Any girl who would title her blog after a line in Clueless gets my vote! Dino aka Katy grew up in the former East Germany but now resides in the US, where she blogs about her daily life and posts lots of pictures. I like blogs like that. She also has met Jin in real life, several times. Luucky! (said in my best Napoleon Dynamite voice.)

Stop by for CP's next ten, to come out soon!

Don't worry Tanya, your turn will come...eventually!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Gratuitous Cat Shots - Special Reindeer Edition

Grover auditions for the role of Blizter in next season's Brooklyn Christmas Pageant.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Our very own Diana

A princess arrives. With carry-on.

I have my own princess. And I'm not talking about the whiny Long Island variety, I'm talking bona fide royalty.

I spent a year in France when I was in high school, living with a family. (Mindy gives a nice recap of our visit with them in France last year.) I enjoyed wonderful hospitality from all the families in the little town where I was living, but none were quite like this particular family. They were so sweet and generous with me I could hardly believe my good fortune. They would spontaneously say things like "hey Tom, why don't you invite about 20 of your school friends over this weekend. We'll have a barbecue!" I was very sad when I had to leave them at the end of the year and return to my own sullen brood.

The eldest daughter of this family is a year younger than me, so we were especially close when I was living in her home. She has her personality quirks just like anyone else, but I always found her to be utterly delightful. And very pretty to boot.

Brunching at French Roast

Anne's family is an upstanding one in France, and actually suffers a bit of a "reputation" in this little town. I never saw this side of them, and granted, maybe they were putting on a nicer facade for me, but a lot of people in the town referred to them as "those snobs." I found them to be anything but. Sure, they liked to enjoy the finer things in life, but I didn't exactly feel them turning me away at the door. Plus, I can't help it if some people just don't know how to dress.

But anyway, they were lovely, and I've kept in touch with them all these years.

Anne always aspired to greater things in life, and in keeping with her plan she ended up marrying into German royalty. Literally. Although the Germans no longer have any official responsibility-bearing titles, the former royals are quite proud of hanging onto their titles that apparently used to mean a lot more in an official sense than they do now. Social registers and all that jazz. I don't know a whole lot about it except to say that her husband is officially a "prince" and his mother is "Countess of something and something" etc. And that when his mother passes away his title becomes even nobler. I need to look into how that all works.

Have you ever been crowded into a small elevator with a princess? George and I have.

They got married about 13 years ago, and I always figured it was a fairy tale romance. But alas, I recently discovered all has not been well in paradise, and that the "happy" couple is splitting up.

While it's hard to feel sympathy for a princess when there are billions of people in the world suffering from real problems, I still feel bad for her. But anyway.

Anne called a while ago to tell me of her woes and to ask if she could come spend a long weekend with us in New York. "Mais bien sur!" I told her and began making plans on how to regale her in the same spirit of generosity with which her family has always treated me. I have always tried to go to extra lengths to be nice to them whenever they come to visit me, which they've done numerous times in the U.S. In fact, last summer Anne celebrated her 40th birthday, and I was totally stressing out about what to get her since George and I were attending her party.

With Ruby in our suite at the W

"She's a fucking princess. I can't just walk in there with some piece of junk!" I thought, and George agreed. So I went to Tiffany's and got her a bracelet. And actually felt ashamed when I walked in the door with it. I was thinking "her husband is a prince and has probably given her all sorts of family jewels and all that crap. She'll just laugh at this."

Little did I know, it was the nicest present she received. In fact, her "Protestant" husband (that's how Anne's parents refer to their son-in-law) has NEVER given her a gift in all their years of marriage. NOT ONE GIFT! Needless to say, she was charmed almost to tears with our thoughtfulness.

But I hadn't yet been informed about the prince's miserly nature at the time that I was planning Anne's weekend with us. I remember talking to Mindy on the phone about it, stressing about how we were going to have a princess staying with us and we didn't even have a spare bedroom to offer her.

"I don't know how I can possibly expect this woman to sleep on our couch. With cats running all over her yet."

George and I at dinner

Mindy replied that I should make it into a funny blog post, and take pictures of her bundled up on the couch, which incidentally doesn't even pull out into a sleeper sofa. "It will be great. You can title it "Anne, Princess of _________, Husband of Prince ________, Daughter-in-law of Countess _________, visits the home of Mama Gin and enjoys her luxurious Brooklyn accommodations."

Very funny.

An exquisite dinner at Aquavit

After thinking about it for a short while, I came to the realization that the weekend she was visiting coincided with George's birthday. So I did the only sensible thing and booked us a suite at the W in Manhattan. It was like a madcap Manhattan weekend for the three of us to celebrate her visit and George's birthday, therefore justifying the (considerable) cost.

Pre-dinner cocktails in our suite with Ruby

We had a lot of time to talk and catch up, as well as to enjoy the finer aspects of the city. Enjoy the following pictures recapping parts of our weekend.

Oh, and the princess has agreed to sleep on our couch next time she visits.

I was careful not to eat too many rolls at Aquavit.

Ruby spent the entire evening telling Anne how she would "start healing very soon." To the point where we were cringing in embarrassment. Anne is wearing the Tiffany bracelet.

Nightcap at the W bar

Ruby admonishing Anne to buy herself jewelry if a man won't. "Look, I baaawt my own rubies and doooiiiamonds." Imagine Fran Drescher's voice and you pretty much understand what it means to spend time with Ruby.

Anne shoots us the inevitable look of "who the fuck is this woman?"

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Betsy Ross Got It All Sewed Up

Let's say, hypothetically, that you are visiting Philadelphia and you decide to go see Betsy Ross's house.

And then for the rest of the day the theme song from Maude runs through your head.

Does that indicate something is wrong with you?

Just hypothetically.


Saturday, May 03, 2008

Finishing the Bubs Interview

My grandpa Harald is on the left. Apparently he made extra money as a Herb Ritts model.

logger legend Bubs sent me five interview questions on May 28, 2007. It took me a while to get started, but since the first question was about how Poor George and I met, I felt compelled to tell the story in its entirety which took six installments over a period of time. (See here for Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5 and Part 6 of the CP+PG story.)

Only after that was I able to get to his second question, which centered on the inimitable Mama Gin (video included.)

Finally today, Thanksgiving Day (where incidentally I am bundled up on my couch sick as a dog) I have decided to give a crack at the rest of Bubs' questions. (editor's note: Today is actually May 3, 2008. I procrastinated yet another five months.)

In case you are feeling slighted by my taking six months to answer your questions, Bubs, be assured that you are receiving a quicker reply than the majority of my colleagues do at work, although that's mainly because they are annoying. With you I can only fall back on my laziness, which I do cherish by the way so let's keep the nasty comments to ourselves.

With that, let's get on to Bubs' third question.

3) You have a free weekend coming up, and you can go anywhere in the world on the condition that you throw a small cocktail party once you get there. You can ask any 5 or 6 people (living or dead, famous, not famous, whatever) to help you host it. Who do you get, and where will you be hosting this party?

I already blogged about my ideal dinner party list after which I was flamed in the comments on account of a snide remark I made about Robert Downey Jr.

(Mindy says it was probably RDJ himself flaming me, and I'd have to agree.)

So, I think this cocktail party is going to be a family affair so that I can get to know some of my ancestors better.

1. My grandpa Harald. Grandpa Harald was a crabby old Norwegian who died when I was a junior in high school, so I didn't get enough time with him. He was a neatnick (may be where I got my gene from) who would come to our house and take it upon himself to spiff up our lawn.

This is Grandpa Harald wooing my grandmother. He was 21 years older than her. Hmm, shotgun wedding, much?

One day I came home from school to find that my favorite tree in front of our house had lost all its lower branches, the ones I would use to get started on a good climb, because Grandpa didn't think it looked "neat" enough. I cried.

Grandpa in his minimalist yard design. I'm surprised he allowed those three leaves in the foreground to stay there long enough for someone to snap this photo.

Another time he decided to mow the lawn and used the mower to run roughshod over a climbing vine that had been growing nicely on a small hill in front of the house. "Yew don't need all dose leaves growin' all over da place like dat!" he said when my mom politely asked him what the fuck he was doing.

Grandpa was also very particular about what he ate. He pretty much only ate meat, fish and potatoes; any kind of greenery or crunchy raw vegetable would be shunned as "rabbit food."

Grandpa and Grandma were a great couple because they were both neatniks. Grandma made him wear a bib during his later years. He also had such particular food tastes and requirements that I would not be able to be his friend if I knew him today.

He married Grandma when she was quite young, so his Norwegian relatives taught her to make all his favorites like meatballs and that sort of thing. He was particularly fond of all the different types of herrings and sardines that you will find if you ever go to a breakfast buffet
in Scandinavia. Regardless of what he ate, however, he would invariably top the meal off with a cup of coffee sucked through a piece of coffee flavored Brach's candy that he would hold between his teeth. And when he was done with that he would pat his belly and say "dat wasn't much, but it sure was gud!" and then laugh like it was the funniest thing he'd ever heard.

Grandpa visiting Tijuana.

Grandpa Harald was really cute. I loved him and miss him a lot. This is him with my mom and my uncle.

2. My grandpa David, my dad's father. I don't know squat about this guy because he died before I was born - and my dad rarely talks about his family. From what I gather he was a crabby ass with a mean streak. Ran off and joined the Seabees during the War and left my grandma at home with a bunch of small kids, at which point she took to her bed and left the household under the care of my dad's older sisters (who, thankfully, are good people.) The only reason I know any of this is because I sat and grilled my Aunt Lura for a few hours one time - she is the oldest sibling who probably remembers more than anyone else.

So why would I want this guy at my party? Well, he is my grandpa and I've never met him. It would be nice to see what he was like for myself. (picture below)

3. My great-grandma Jeanette. Great-Grandma Jeanette was an Indian, at least that's what some people have said. My mom said when she was growing up there was always all this talk about "an Indian in the family" but that her mother would always shut it down whenever it was mentioned. I always thought something looked very Native about my grandma's face, although my mom told me in no uncertain terms that was never to be uttered out loud in Grandma's presence.

A few yeas ago I went out to dinner with some Native American friends who live in New York. I brought along some pictures of my great-grandma and said "do you think she has native blood?" They both took one look and said "Oh yeah, definitely." One thought she may have been full blood from some tribe like Sauk and Fox or Miami, and the other friend ventured she was probably half white.

Either way, they explained to me that during the homesteading days, there were a lot of Indians who could pass as white and more than a few of them tried to because that was the only way to be able to homestead and own land, since Indians were usually precluded from that. So it's not surprising at all that many people in this country who have had relatives here for any length of time probably have some Native American blood; and to the extent that people have any, it was probably well hidden for political-economic reasons. Still, I was surprised to think that mine could have been so close in my mom's bloodline.

My great-grandma, the alleged Indian, is on the right. My grandma is on the left. Great-Grandma married a guy with stickey-outey ears, who is holding my Grandma's twin brothers. Great-Grandma was supposedly a hoot, and she got divorced three times in the 20s and 30s. Bold woman for her day. Grandma was embarrassed by her and no one was allowed to bring up the Indian thing around her.

Great-Grandma in later years. I really wish I'd had a chance to know her. That's why she's invited to my cocktail party.

4. My Aunt Doris. She died when I was in college so again, not enough time with her. She was one groovy lady who liked to party and was always good at coming up with a whopper of a lie. She was known to have a little too much fun with the bottle and would do things like agree to bring over the roasted turkey for Thanksgiving but then would get drunk and forget. Good times.

Bubs, finding these pictures is what took me so long with this post. This is the only picture I currently have in my possession that pictures my Aunt Doris (cute blondie in the middle.) From left to right are Aunt Lura, Uncle David, Aunt Doris, Uncle Ray, and my dad.

5. My grandma Lida Mae, my dad's mother who died when I was nine. I remember her coming to visit for days or weeks at a time when I was a kid, but don't recall anything in particular about her except that she seemed like your basic nice old lady. For some reason I used to take great pride in showing her my cats' food whenever I was ready to feed them. She must have thought it was disgusting.

My mom hated her for reasons I have only recently begun to sort out.

Grandma Lida Mae and Grandpa David. I barely knew her, and never got a chance to know him.

I guess I'll host this party in Spain because I've never been there and have always heard it's nice. Probably Barcelona.

4) Tell me more about this "secret eating listener" fetish. I looked in DSM IV but I couldn't find it.

I can't really tell you much more about my secret eating listening beyond what I've described here. I guess it's because I have very sensitive ears (not in that I hear well, but more as in they are ticklish.) Poor George and I have a dumb new trick where we get our cat Ava to eat treats out of our ears. It's really cute; she grabs the little treat and then crunches it right by your ear - I squeal like a little girl every time.

We're sick bastards.

5) There's a glitch in the time/space continuum, and Tom as he is now, sage urban sophisticate, finds himself standing there holding a plate of cold cuts and jello salad at the high school graduation party of Tom the 18 year old. What do you say to that boy, and do you think he'll listen?

For starters, Bubs, let's not throw around this "sage urban sophisticate" label with too much wild abandon. While I would never describe my upbringing as "white trash," I still harbor a fondness for the four basic food groups of the Midwest: hot dish, jello, deviled eggs and bars. But I digress.

The four food groups of the post-modern Midwestern urban sophisticate

Hot dish. Tater tots optional. Arranged in whichever pleasing design you prefer.

Deviled eggs (plus relish tray)

Bars. A plethora of varieties from which to choose. The only prerequisite is that your preferred variety should be featured prominently in at least one church recipe book.

Jello. Preferably in molded salad format.

I was a complete mess when I was 18, Bubs - you wouldn't have wanted to know me. If I really could go back and talk to myself I would say "calm down, nothing is worth getting so upset over. You're just imitating your mother and you don't even realize it." I would also give myself some advice on what kinds of classes to take in college. I regret not trying more subjects on for size in an attempt to find an area of study that I really loved.

I don't know if I would have listened. Probably.

Done. Only took me six, um, make that eleven months!

(Dale, yours are coming...one day.)

Thursday, May 01, 2008

No man hurts because another man limps - Danish proverb

Our pal Dr. Monkey von Monkerstein had a contest and I won! I just received the above vintage postcard, with Dr. von Monkerstein's handwritten Zen-like proverb on the back, in the mail as my prize. (See the title of this post for the Zen-like proverb.)

I'm so great, I'm so great, I'm so great!

This is SO going on my parents' refrigerator.