7/31/2006

You Want Mundane? I'll Give You Mundane...

My weekly lunch routine:

Monday: Place: La Senorita Restaurant, Petoskey MI
Menu Selection: One Tamale (ala carte) + One Flauta (ala carte), Water, Free chips & salsa
Tuesday: Place: Jose's Authentic Mexican Restaurant, Petoskey, MI
Menu Selection: One Steak Burrito (w/ extra steak), One Chorizo Taco, Water
Wednesday: Place: China King Buffet, Petoskey, MI
Menu Selection: Sweet & Sour Chicken, Onion Rings, Steak Special,
Sesame Chicken, Water, Chocolate Soft Serve Cone
Thursday: Place: La Senorita Restaurant, Petoskey, MI
Menu Selection: Western BBQ Burger (Special), Fries, Water, Free chips & salsa
Friday: Place: Scalawag's Whitefish, Petoskey, MI
Menu Selection: 2-Piece Whitefish Basket (includes 3 pieces of Whitefish, 2 Hushpuppies, Slaw, & Fries), Water

Remembering Things...


I don't claim to have a photographic memory, but I do have a knack for remembering things that have minimal or no importance. For instance, I can remember the contents of each drawer and cabinet in the kitchen of the house I grew up in, down to the minutest detail. I can remember, when I was four, when and where I was the first time I figured out that the blinking red lights on the back of a car indicated which way it was going to turn.

The summer after third grade we took our first big family vacation. We drove from Elmhurst, IL to Colorado and all around the state. One of our stops was the town of Durango. They had this old-time railroad trip you could take through the mountains to Silverton. At the beginning of the trip, as the train was passing people's backyards, I spied a man holding a hose between his legs, watering his garden. He held it like he was pissing. Of course any eight-year-old would find this funny and, mind you, this is well before I saw something similar in "Caddyshack". At the time I made a point of thinking to myself that that sight would be the one thing I would never forget, no matter what. I have no idea why. To this day, anytime I tell myself I can't forget this or that, that image always pops into my head.

I'm Back...

Did y'all miss me? I had this really snappy "Welcome back" photo to go with this post, but of course Blogger won't let me upload it. Sunza bitches! To see what sort of mayhem I've been up to, my recent posts are over at Grant's blog betweeen 7-21 and 7-29. Because of all the new friends I made over there, I had to create a new folder in my "Favorites" pull-down entitled "blogs". I'm still coping with the radical change and am not yet used to that one extra mouse click. It's good to be back!

7/19/2006

To My Loyal Readers (All Three Of You)...

Starting Friday I will be guest blogging for my friend, Grant Miller, while he's away on vacation. During this time I won't be adding new posts to this blog. I invite all newcomers to read through my hilarious previous posts so that you're caught up when I return. For those of you who came to my blog via Grant's, welcome! I plan on regaling you with tales of the sordid youth of young Grant.

7/18/2006

Believe It Or Not...

Believe it or not I have never had a cup of coffee. I have been in a Starbucks once while a friend was buying one. Actually, I think the closest Starbucks is about an hour and a half away from where I live. Once a friend of mine shamed me into drinking some Italian after-dinner drink that had coffee in it, but as for a straight-up cuppa joe - never. Not even a sip.

Documentary Film Of The Day - Stevie...

I just watched this movie again on either IFC or The Sundance Channel. It was made by Steve James, the same guy who brought us the unbelievably good "Hoop Dreams". While in college at Southern Illinois University, Steve became a "Big Brother" to a troubled child named Stevie Fielding. Stevie had been neglected and abused as a child and bounced around foster homes and juvenile detention centers. When Steve finished school and moved to Chicago, he lost touch with Stevie. Years later he wanted to find out what became of him. What he found was a conflicted man, prone to violence, living in a trailer next to his adoptive grandmother. It is discovered that Stevie had sexually abused his eight-year-old cousin, although he never really admits to it. Surprisingly, the movie portrays Stevie as someone who is at times terrifyingly hostile as well as pitiable because of the horrible upbringing he had to endure. There are times I questioned the wisdom of Mr. James decision to document the things that he did. In the end, though, the insight that is gained as a result of the extraordinary access he was given is invaluable.

Media Bitchlick, Numero Uno...


Bill O'Reilly is a cunt-ass peehole.

O.C.D....


I think that each one of us has symptoms of O.C.D. to a certain extent. A lot of mine deal with how I eat different foods. I'm a big fan of Strawberry Twizzlers. I eat every one exactly the same way. First, I bite off each end, approximately 1/4", so I essentially have a straw. I don't use it as a straw, but I do suck one end to make sure there is good air flow. Then I take a series of individual bites about 3/4" in length. I orient each 3/4" section in my mouth so that it is parallel to my front teeth, with each end facing my cheeks. I bite down through the top and "open" it with my tongue so that what I have is a flat rectangular piece. Then I turn the flattened piece 90 degrees in my mouth (the long axis is now perpendicular to my teeth) and take a series of "mini-bites", still with my incisors, so that I'm left with something about the consistency of couscous. At this point I grind it with my back teeth and quickly move on to the next 3/4" bite. Does this make me a psycho?

7/17/2006

Did He Say What I Think He Said...

Well, leave it to our idiot press to blow something completely out of proportion. Leave it to them to get their panties in a bunch over something so ridiculous. Oh my god! The president said shit! Oh boy, oh boy! Seriously? Is that what we're going to focus on? How about, just for kicks, we look at what he said and how utterly simplistic it is.

Bush: What they need to do is get Syria to get Hezbollah to stop doing this shit, and it’s over…

Wow, it's that easy! Just do that and all these innocent people who were caught in the crosshairs of leaders trying to prove their penises aren't small won't have to die. That this is the guy at the helm of our foreign policy should frighten us far more than the fact that he has a potty-mouth. For god's sake. Is this the best we can do? This goes for all my lefty friends, too, who are making a big deal about this. Sure he's an embarassment with poor manners, but that is not important. The world already knows that.

There Art Thou...


How nice to see that our favorite drooler emerged from his underground lair that he shares with Dick Cheney and Richard Perle to grace us with his musings on the Plame affair and his complicity therein. For anyone who may have missed his Meet The Press foray, here is some material to consider. He is a big ol' liar, no two ways about it! Suck it, Bobby!

What Ever Happened To...


What ever happened to Mindy Cohn? She played the frumpy, spunky Natalie throughout the entire run of Fact Of Life, including, I believe, any and all reunion shows that followed. Mindy was an anomaly. She proved that you could flourish in primetime despite a weight problem and an appearance deficit. Not only that, as I recall, she was the first of the Eastland girls to make whoopie. Now, you may think that I'm being cruel. Not at all. I applaud her for overcoming the unwritten rules of Hollywood. She was a pioneer. In today's unforgiving climate, where you have to be rail-thin with a flawless face and perfect breasts, she wouldn't even warrant a second look. Hats off to you, Mindy, wherever you are!

7/13/2006

Sorry...



It's too fucking hot to write something today.

7/12/2006

Bush-Loving...


As I may have mentioned in a previous post, one of my favorite pasttimes is to go on conservative blogs and pose as a super-wacky far right nut just to see how much I can get away with. You'd be amazed. One thing I've noticed reading these blogs is the conservative's reliance on Bush hatred in their debates. Here is a sample conversation:

Liberal: But there were no WMDs in Iraq, even though they told us they knew where the were.
Conservative nut-job: You just hate bush.
Liberal: He told us anyone involved in the Plame leak would no longer be in his administration, but they still are.
Conservative nut-job: Why do you hate Bush so much?
Liberal: This administration is running roughshod over the constitution with warrantless wiretaps.
Conservative nut-job: Stop hating, you hater.

Is that it? Is that their defense? You hate Bush, so nothing you say is valid. Let me set the record straight. I don't hate Bush. He annoys the shit out of me and I'm embarassed that he happens to be our leader, but I don't hate him. I honestly believe that his actions have damaged our country and made us a laughingstock around the world, but I don't hate him. The question should be why these people love him so much. What has he done that is so praise-worthy? I don't have anything really funny to say. I'm just baffled.

7/11/2006

Documentary Film Of The Day - Fast, Cheap, And Out Of Control...

Some of you may be familiar with Errol Morris because of his award-winning film "Fog Of War" or his series of Miller High Life commercials. He has made some great, off-beat documentaries primarily focused on obscure, everyday people. I can't think of one that I haven't liked. Fast, Cheap, And Out Of Control is a movie that juxtaposes four seemingly disparate men with odd occupations (or obsessions as the case may be). One is a topiary gardener (someone who sculpts plants, like in Edward Scissorhands), one is a robotics expert, one is a retired lion tamer, and one is an expert on the lives of mole rats. The passion these men possess for the things they do is fascinating, but it is the way the film is edited that makes it so strong. Morris has a unique ability to elicit information from his subjects. I feel that this is a good introduction for those interested in the films of Mr. Morris, moreso than "Fog Of War", which, while brilliant in its own right, is atypical of most of his work.

7/10/2006

Online Dating...


I have tried online dating on the popular site Match.com off and on for a few years now. It is a racket, let me tell you. I have yet to connect with any of the limited women I've met. Now, this could be due to my location in a rural part of the country. Or it could be because I'm an intolerable prick. I hope that's not it. Here is the evil thing they do, though. First, you can have a free profile without being a subscriber, you just can't send e-mail to anyone. You can receive e-mail from others, but cannot look at it unless you suscribe. When someone sends you an e-mail based on your profile, Match.com sends you an e-mail saying "someone wants to talk", urging you to re-up your membership. So, if you're a pathetic shlub like me, you start to have grand fantasies that the woman who wrote to you is the twin sister of Heather Locklear. I have repeatedly broken down, paid the fucking $30 to see who wrote to me only to find out that the woman looks like this.

7/07/2006

The E! Channel...

Anytime I am flipping through the channels, a sure-fire way to get me to pause is to put an attractive woman with ample cleavage on my screen. For this reason, I often find myself stopping on channel 15 - the E! channel. What I've learned from my frequent stops is that the E! channel loves to rank things. As far as I can tell, there is no polling to determine these rankings. Last night, on a show called "The Daily 10", they did a great public service by telling us the top ten celebrity friends. Some duos included Salma Hayek and Penelope Cruz, Nicole Kidman and Naomi Watts, and the Olsen twins. First place honors went to Jennifer Aniston and Courtney Cox-Arquette who narrowly beat out runners-up Matt Damon and Ben Affleck. My question for Matt & Ben is: Are you going to let a couple girls beat you!? C'mon, guys! Let's step it up. You can be better friends than them. Matt, do you call Ben as often as you could to see how he's doing? And Ben, why didn't you help Matt out when he moved into his new place? That could've been the difference! I'm curious what sort of celebration was held when Jen and Courtney got the news. I mean, these two have been honing their friendship for years in order to be #1. So, to Mischa Barton and Nicole Richie I say, you may think you're good friends, but your friendship ain't shit compared to these two. It's OK, though. Work hard and someday, you too might end up on top!

7/06/2006

Making Stuff...

I like to make stuff. I like the feeling you get when you take different raw materials and shape and change them into something neat. I also like shows that show you how to make stuff. I was lucky to get to sit in on a seminar given by Norm Abrams on how to create a good workshop. It was fun to see him in all his flannel-clad glory. A dream of mine is to one day have a shop like his with every obscure tool you can think of. For now I've focused on carving freshwater fish decoys, something my uncle got me into. Here are a few samples. The fish are carved from Basswood and airbrushed with acrylic paint. I buy glass eyes from a taxidermy supply catalog. The mounts are driftwood from a beach in Manistique, Michigan. The stones and sand are from Lake Charlevoix by where I live. The strange part is, I don't like to fish at all.

7/05/2006

Losing Stuff...


A while back, a friend was visiting. He thought he had lost his keys. We all searched, frustrated. Eventually, his fiance found them wedged between the car seats. We were all thrilled and relieved. It made me wonder. Is the thrill of finding something you thought you'd lost worth the suffering you experience while you're searching? In other words, is it better to think you lost something and then find it than to never thought it was lost in the first place? I'm not sure. It's a pretty fucking good feeling when you find something. I started applying this to other things. Take something like hypocrisy. I've always thought I can't stand hypocrisy. However, I do love it when I find hypocrisy, especially when it comes to politics. So would it be better not to have it at all, or is the joy that comes from finding it worth its existence? Chew on that for a while.

7/03/2006

Documentary Film Of The Day - How's Your News?

I just saw this film over the weekend. It follows a group of five aspiring news reporters, each with a different disability, as they travel across the country doing "man-on-the-street" interviews with whoever will stop and talk. The members of the "How's Your News?" team include: Susan Harrington, an ultra-professional with a mental disability and sight problems, Ronnie Simonsen, a man with Cerebral Palsy and a vast knowledge of 70's era television, Robert Bird, a man with Downs Syndrome and a speech impediment that makes his speech come out as gibberish, Sean Costello, a man with Downs Syndrome and a love of fried chicken, and Larry Perry, a man with severe Cerebral Palsy who is confined to a wheelchair and cannot communicate beyond hand signals for yes and no. These five individuals met at a camp where they were offered a video class. After getting a hold of some of their tapes, Trey Parker and Matt Stone (of South Park fame), offered to fund this feature film. Their involvement may suggest that this film was in some way exploitative and I'm sure some may think it is. I didn't see it that way, nor did the people involved. This film made me happy. It made me happy that these people were doing something they truly loved. It was also fascinating to see the reactions of the people they interviewed. Some took the easy way out and walked right by. Others would stop and chat about nothing in particular. For more info, go to www.howsyournews.com