Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Time Killer

Well, as usual, it's late, I'm doing laundry, and watching a Nova episode on "dreams". Such is my life. I guess I'm writing this purely as a stream of consciousness thing in order to kill time, so, I can't imagine I'll have much to say. So, I'll just blather along here...
First of all, I'm cold. Hands are freezing! What the hell??? This is odd because I'm usually quite warm. Ask any woman I've ever dated. They may not sing my praises about what a nifty guy I was, but they will all admit I was a great source of prodigious body heat on a cold evening, and most were only too happy to stick cold feet into me, crawl up under my arm and wiggle into the crook of my rib cage, or stick cold arms up my shirt in order to rob me of my thermal goodness. And now, my hands, and feet, are getting cold, and my nose is running. Hmmmm...well, surely erectile dysfunction and prostate issues are just around the corner as well. Time marches on and age descends. Huzzah.
My fancy schmansy wide screen TV has little white spots all over the screen. It has something to do with a faulty chip. The TV is out of warranty, so you'd think I'm screwed, right? Wrong. Samsung, much to my utter AMAZEMENT, is going to pay for the fix. Yeah...exactly, I almost crapped my pants too. Who woulda thunk it? Then again, your TV shouldn't crap out after three years, right? Remember that old 24 inch color set your parents had...for about 500 years?????? I'm on my second hi-def set in last four years that has had issues. I'm getting the impression these new hi-def TV's are really just disposable pieces of crap we're actually renting, rather than buying. Still...thank you Samsung.
Update from "dream" episode I'm watching. They're screwing with the brains of cats and mice. Did you know your muscles freeze when you're dreaming? Its what keeps you still. Well, these scientists shorted out the part of the brain responsible for that in a cat, and when it fell asleep and started dreaming, it started running around and appeared to be stalking imaginary prey, even though it was dead asleep. FREAKY! Can you imagine if they did that to a human? Think of the weird shit you sometimes dream about, and then ACTUALLY acting it out...SCARY.
I decided to do the cooking for Thanksgiving this year. I'm brining a turkey (always wanted too), going to make my kick ass mashed potatoes (gotta mix in lots of butter, sour cream, and some cheese to make it full of artery clogging goodness), a cheesey green bean casserole from scratch (no canned mushroom soup here baby), plus some other things (like stuffing), etc. It's going to be a total food orgy...although there will only be three of us here half the day (me, mom and sis), and then my two daughters later in the evening. Still, I like to cook, and I am pretty good at it. I like to get in the kitchen (stay outta my way!) and just get in the zone and let my mind work out all of life's problems as I slice and dice. It's kind of therapeutic. But, I get frustrated when people invade my distracts me and takes away from any enjoyment I get out of it. I like to cook alone, and this seems to upset people. Why is that? When folks cook for me I don't barge into their kitchen and insist on helping, and then treat them like an asshole if they refuse. I ask if they'd like help, and if they say "no", I'm happy to sit and watch TV (or whatever). But for some reason when I say "No, I've got it...but thanks" people get all pissy. This baffles would think people would be happy having someone shovel food at them as they sit on their ass. I know I am. Hell, I cook and EVEN do the dishes....again, by myself. Bonus, right? So what's the issue?
OK, dream episode scientist guy is hypothesizing that dreams are preparation for real life. His idea is a nightmare is a run-through and practice for a real life crisis you may have to deal with. I dunno...if I dreamed I had sex with a refrigerator (I'm just sayin'), of what value is that? Then again, maybe it just means I am a food lover! hahahaha OK, moving on...
My bed is hellaciously comfortable. Seriously. You should all try it...I'm not joking. This morning, and this is no joke, I was laying in it and all warm with my down comforters and freshly laundered sheets and thinking "I feel sorry for folks not in my bed. They are truly missing out...and I feel sad for them...then again, life's a bitch, and they'll just have to deal." Anyway, I haven't spent much time in it lately as I've been out of town quite a bit, but it was like the embrace of a long lost lover whose touch you've missed, but haven't forgotten, and instantly recognize. This morning was our passionate reunion, and I nearly shed a tear of happiness and joy. OK, I'm joking...but the thing is pretty fucking comfortable.
Jesus Christ, how long does it takes clothes to dry?????? Ugh.....
OK, according to the late night ABC World News, the Brits are building a 1,000 MPH super car powered by the engine of a supersonic fighter jet. Wouldn't that be cool? At that speed I could be to work in about 42 seconds...which would naturally allow me to sleep in later. I want one.
The female newscaster on this show has really white teeth, obviously bleached. Plus, shes Indian, so they jump out even more (due to the duskier complexion). Everybodys teeth are just SO WHITE now its freaky. True, white teeth are nice, and mine could be a little better after a lifetime of coffee, tea, colas, the occasional drunken cigarette...but still. These day-glow chompers people have now as a result of cosmetic bleaching is the equivalent of the boob job...obviously artificial, and just TOO MUCH. I'm sure there are "natural looking" boob jobs and natural "teeth whitening" jobs out there, but as usual, most folks dive right in with the freaky overkill. There's just something weird about a 35 year old smiling and their teeth are snow white and 50 shades lighter than a six year old. Where does the vanity end? Thats doesn't. After all, the world already has gone to anal bleaching. Hmmmm....I guess next is having your blood dyed a prettier shade of crimson and your urine filtered a second time by an implanted artificial third kidney prior to going to the bathroom so it gives society the impression youre properly hydrated at all times, whether you are or not, should somebody see your pee (horror of horrors...its just too yellow!).
Oh, hear that buzzer? My laundrys done!!!!!!!!!! Good night!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

A trip to the grocery store

One would think a quick shopping trip to the grocery store would be a simple enough, and pleasant enough, experience. You pop in, grab what you need, and leave. Bada bing...done. Yet, for cosmic reasons I do not understand, my trips to the grocery store do not EVER go this way. Again, tonight was no exception.

After going to the gym (when in Fresno, the gym and the grocery store seem to be lately about the only two places I leave my home for), I was given a list of items to purchase for the hungry hoard (two daughters, mom, and sis) waiting back at home. One of these items was crackers and garlic and herb cream cheese spread. So I went about collecting my items in about ten minutes, and last on the list was the cream cheese spread. So off to the cheese aisle I go and....hmmmmm. Cream cheese, shredded cheese, blocks of cheese, individually sliced and wrapped cheese...and, um, apparently no cream cheese spread. I look again. And again. And oooooone more time to be sure. Nada. Then it hits me, "OH! It must be with the fancy cheese in the little kiosk near the deli with all the other foo foo stuff." So off to the fancy kiosk I go and......gorgonzola, feta, goat cheese, brie, blue cheese, cream cheese spread. So I look again. And again. And again. Nada. Obviously I must have over looked it back at the cheese section, so I go back. Nothing.

OK, so this back and forth goes on for about twenty minutes before I finally locate the cream cheese spread in a third location next to the deli counter that contained NO CHEESE AT ALL (well, other than the one I was looking for). What it had was imported pastas, and hummus, and other dips, but no obvious signs of CHEESE. OK, all of this leads me to this question: WHY IN THE HELL DO WE HAVE CHEESE IN THREE DIFFERENT LOCATIONS???????? Here's an idea: you have ONE AISLE, labeled, crazily enough, "cheese". And in this aisle would be "cheese". All of it. You need cheese? You go to the FUCKING CHEESE AISLE. How hard would that be? Just imagine, cheese in the cheese aisle...what a concept. In fact, lets take this idea a step further. There's an aisle labeled "meat" that contains, you guessed it...meat. And one "dairy" that has...yep. The stuff from a cows boobs. The frozen aisle get the idea. Etc. Conversations would go something like this:

"Excuse me sir? Where do I find the queso de la hombre con grande pelotas? If you could just point me to your gourmet..."

"Huh, what the hell is that?"

"Well, its this exquisite goats milk curd from a small region in Jalisco that accompanies a Red Zin like nothing you've..."

"Goats milk curd? You mean like cheese?"


"Oh. Well, then it's in the cheese aisle you pretentious dick."

See? Simple, clear, concise. Perfect for you, perfect for me, and perfect for pretentious dicks everywhere. It's a wonder we can find ANYTHING in a grocery store. Need roasted peppers? Are they in the canned vegetable aisle? No. The produce aisle? No. They're in the CONDIMENT aisle with ketchup and mustard. HUH??? Chili con carne is in the canned meat aisle, not the Mexican food aisle, but refried beans is in the Mexican food aisle, and not the canned beans aisle. WTF???? Is there a rule book on grocery store nomenclature I can study?????? Anyway, I found my cream cheese spread as I said, but only after an obsessive search for it that resulted in my forgetting to get lemon juice, which caused a momentary tea crisis when I got back home (luckily, I had just enough left in the fridge...but thanks for your concern). Had my garlic herb cream cheese spread been my only issue, no biggie. But as usual, there's more...

I get to the register to check out so I can just go home and get out of my gym clothes, shower and enjoy a nice dinner. As I stand in line with my stuff dumped onto the food treadmill that leads to the cashier (i.e. I am now committed to this line. Kinda like after you sleep with somebody. Sure, you COULD leave, but it's AWK-WARD) in the misnamed "Express Line", I now realize there's a commotion at the register. There's wild gesturing, the shaking of heads, lots of finger pointing, furrowed foreheads, the shrugging of shoulders, and a general sense of was almost like I was watching a video of the day I lost my virginity. Anyway, people clearly do not know what to do. Finally, an older guy who obviously had to be brought out in the middle of his lunch break comes over and punches a numerical code into the register that was about as long as as the square root of pi, and apparently, twice as complicated, because he had to do it three times to get it right (again, see losing virginity above). And what was the issue you may or may not be asking yourself? Apparently somebody wrote a (GASP!) check...and royally fucked everything up. Now, I'm guessing this person pulled up in their Model-T and just wanted to buy some sarsaparilla, Epsom salts, and wanted to know if the war was over...the War of 1812 that is. Anyway, yes, they were old. But still, the way everybody was acting, I thought maybe he was attempting to pay with stone coins from ancient Sumeria, as opposed to a check. Luckily, they got it worked out, the old fart got his, well, whatever geezers venture out on a Saturday night for, and I went home to people wondering what the hell took so long. I related my story in a rather animated fashion, got a laugh, and everything was fine. But still...three cheese locations? Really???

Friday, November 13, 2009

About as un-PC as I can be, but dammit...I want my earphones!

So, while driving to Oakland down I-80 from Sacramento the other day, I was doing what all good people in the friendly climes of Northern California do, and that is I was listening to NPR on the radio. NPR is good because you hear stories there you don't anywhere else, and being a guy who enjoys stuffing my head with obscure, and some would say, useless, facts, I learned something THAT MADE PERFECT SENSE.

You know that plastic packaging things like mobile phone earpieces and other electronics come in? I'm talking about that molded plastic that is hermetically sealed together as if the manufacturer doesn't want you to enjoy the product you actually just paid for? The packaging that requires a plasma torch, 43 lbs. of dynamite, multiple bouts of colorful profanity, a few prayers to a god you really don't believe in, and the ritual sacrifice of a neighborhood stray cat, just to pry open a little corner? The packaging that gets you so pissed off you lose it, grab your razor sharp $200 chefs knife out of the kitchen, and start hacking away at it like a middle aged white male with mother issues on a thrill kill spree? (you know, the guy with 14 bodies buried in his backyard that the neighbors always felt was "a nice guy...kinda quiet though" when interviewed by the press when the story goes national?) And once opened (and by "opened", I mean you managed to tear, not cut, a small hole with your chef's knife ((now in need of professional resharpening)) in conjunction with liberal use of your teeth, somewhere near the vicinity where the product is contained, but not close enough to gain actual easy access to said product, which requires you fishing the product out with your fingers like you were trying to get the last olive out of a jar), the plastic has razor sharp edges that result in a situation that it would be far safer to stick your hand down a running garbage disposal than into your products packaging? Your vain attempt to fish out your Bluetooth from this razor sharp maw results in a cut so deep it requires a trip to the emergency room, partial loss of sensation in your left index finger for the rest of your life, a tetanus shot, and a $50 co-pay? Just because you wanted to actually use your BRAND NEW FUCKING iPod earbuds?????? Yeah...THAT stuff.

Anyway, I used to wonder "Who in the hell is responsible for that shit? What retard thought this was a good idea????" Well, here's where the NPR story comes in. Turns out there's a factory in San Antonio, Texas, (land of funny accents, barbecue and Republicans) that packages things in this material. And this factory is predominantly staffed by...the mentally challenged. Which, when you think about it, makes sense. The whole gist of the story was this positive take on how great it was that there were jobs for the mentally handicapped. And it is. Great, that is. And you should have heard how proud the workers were of their work. "Well, you gotta get it REAL HOT! It won't work if it's not HOT! Gotta keep your hands outta there! HOT! HOT! HOT! Then it works! But only when it's HOT! See? It's HOT!!!" OK Corky, I got it. The plastic has to be hot. But why are we letting those with the sense of a cocker spaniel (sorry, yes, I know, I'm going to hell) package my ear buds? I know Corky needs a job, but what about my chef's knife? My $50 co-pay? My sanity???? Maybe Corky and Rain Man should be employed elsewhere in the manufacturing making kitchen towels. That would be great. You'd have your kitchen towel with a fucked up and crooked design on it, and when a friend made the wise ass quip, "Hey, nice dish towel. That's quite a design there" you could shame them with the retort "Actually, that towel was made by the mentally handicapped who are finding ways to be productive and reintegrate their way into valued members of society. But thanks for being a dick." Then you could feel all morally superior and everybody wins. You. Corky. Everybody. 'Ya know?

Anyway, I'm all for everybody having a purpose in life. Seriously, I am. I just want my headphones...minus the hospital bill.

Friday, November 6, 2009

I'm just a tugboat captain...

I don't have anything to share, but I've had a delicious morning of laying around in an empty house in sweats and slippers drinking coffee. May not sound like much to some, but lately I've rarely had the chance to indulge in this, and it's been...heavenly. Anyway, saw this comedian this morning. Now, comedy is a subjective thing, and I can appreciate this. However, people rarely strike me as funny, and it's a rare comedian who does. Louis CK (my fave) and Dave Attell are two I enjoy. This guy is named Lachlan Patterson. He made me laugh. He may make the list. Here's some clips. "Call me Swiffer..." Enjoy.