Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Here at the Doglet Propulsion Laboratories™, we're celebrating the birthday of our muse, the Wünderbunnydoglet, Nuggles von Doglophone. 16 years for her is like 80 for us, and this from a breed whose life-expectancy is 13-15 years. The day after her 14th birthday, she was run over by a car. She hates when I make her wear outfits, but this one was a pastel Rocky Horror finale fantasy for me, so I made her wear it, anyhoo. You always hurt the ones you love. Well, she's put me through it too, bitch that she is, so payback is fair play at this point. I joke that I'll have her hide turned into a little hair hot water bottle so she can continue to function as my personal mini-heater, but don't let that fool you - I'm crazy about this crazy dog. She is a merry, spirited and intrepid creature. She is absolutely fearless and has a degree of toughness that excels even her abundant cuteness. I aspire to be like my dog. I aspire to be worthy of her.

Happy birthday, bun-bun!
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A short and violent video. 'appy 'allo'een!

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Tuesday, October 30, 2007

I've been so busy and caught up in things. I just realized my darling maternal grandfather died 20 years ago this month. I've meant to for a while, but I'll try to post an audio file of some of his guitar picking very soon. Listening to him play was what really made me fall in love with music. Grandpa and Grandma Bertie would have a "musical" every so often, when dozens of cousins, aunts, uncles would gather at their house with their instruments, singing and drinking coffee into the night. He loved his grandbabies, and doted on every single one of us. There's really no one who can make you feel special like your grandparents, is there? Since I've been an adult, I've come to know he was a much more complex person than I could have imagined. Although I know he had world-class talent, I think he would have chafed under the yoke of the business end of the music business. He was a free spirit, and the rules sort of didn't apply to him.

Nice work, if you can get it.
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Monday, October 29, 2007
Here's a new study. New studies are always interesting, aren't they?


Certain female college athletes, such as swimmers, divers and runners, have
lower bone density than other athletes, a new study finds.


Um, ok. So, is there no possibility that certain body types simply have greater/lesser bone density naturally and that this is not a result of the activity, but that the activities chosen are a result of a certain body type? Could it be that someone with a certain physiology is a natural fit for certain sports for reasons that can be narrowed down to a molecular level? Why is that not a consideration?

I mean, clearly there are different body types for different types of athletic pursuits. I have noticed that there's not a lot of crossover between the ballerina- and weightlifter-groups of women, ya know? I don't think this is merely an accident, but more a matter of people being drawn to physical activity that feels natural and enjoyable to them.

Yes, yes, I understand there has to be a mean average by which everyone is measured, but perhaps there should be accounting for variables like genetics and environment. I think this is probably not all that different than the case of a man who smokes a pack a day and eats bacon & eggs every morning and lives to be a hundred, while some other poor sap succumbs to lung cancer at the age of 45. It's a crap-shoot, baby.

I'm sick of hearing that some scientist has declared the last-word final understanding of a thing or a principle. After all, it was less than 40 years ago that the well-intentioned folks at Sierra Club prevented small managed burn-offs in our forest systems that have resulted in the catastrophic fires that have plagued the west and southwest for the past decade. Oh, and in the 60s and 70s, they knew all there was to know. They said so.

That's why we should believe everything scientists say about global warming, too. *smirk*

Ignorance may be bliss, but arrogance and ignorance can be deadly.
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DOG AND PONY SHOW

OK, back home again.

I vowed if I saw a horse this weekend during my visit to the Granbury area, that I would make friends. I walked up to a fence, and an old horse came walking and when he got close to me, he nosed on the ground and of all things, there was a pear on the ground. He seemed grateful to me (yeah, I took credit for the pear) and I rubbed his forehead and along the back of his jawline. Holy crap, I had no ideer horses were SO very dirty. My hand was coated in an oily tan layer of dirt after that. I think I'm doomed to remain all-hat-and-no-horse.

As the horse was bending to pick up the pear, my dog, who I was holding on her leash, started barking like a fiend and she bit him on the nose. He was very mellow though, and though initially he pulled away from her, he afterward seemed to give her no more regard than he would a gnat, as he went about the business of munching and sliming his pear.

She's a little pistol, doglet is. I mean, imagine - this was about a 900-pound horse, I'd say, and here she was, 15 pounds of piss&vinegar-style mouthy little bitch, writing out the check her ass might have to cash. I'd say those odds were pretty skewed, and not in her favor. Still, she had the calmer mind of a human to yank her out of danger. Silly thing.

FYI: I did not buy any new shoes this weekend. That said, I didn't actually go near any places that had shoes, so this is not indicative of self-control so much as a lack of opportunity. I did get all drooly over a pony-hide purse dyed dark red, but I DID resist. Can you believe it?
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Sunday, October 28, 2007



And if we must make concessions for comfort/heel considerations, then at least we have the new mauve/pink combo in the classic Angels/Michael shoe from Fluevog. I have 4 pair of these shoes, and some are more than 10 years old. I have them in pearly gold, and black/burgundy and brown/hunter green. They's just so cute, is all.
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Saturday, October 27, 2007


This was a whirlwind week from Hades.




Anyway, I haven't made my usual blogrounds, but I'll be hitting everyone's blogs on Sunday night. Going out of town til then.




In the meantime, for all those folks who've been talking about the pain of wearing heels, there is ONE shoe company I would recommend that makes the most remarkably comfortable shoes that I know of for less than $100/pair.



The brand is called Sofft, and you can get them at Nordstrom or Zappos. They are amazingly comfortable, and I suspect that someone who couldn't wear other heels could manage to be comfortable in these. Plus, they are amazingly cute.




Also a word on fit for heels is they should pass the pencil test: you should be able to slide a pencil in between the back of your heel and the inside of the back of the shoe. This is the proper fit. Tighter than that is too tight. By the way, I learned that from a tango dancer who knew too well the importance of proper fit for heels.

Have a great weekend!
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Friday, October 26, 2007
From Tam at View From The Porch:

The House of Representatives has passed H.R.1955, the "Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007". One of the bill's sponsors, Rep. Harman (D-CA), said

"We must intervene before a person crosses the line separating radical views from violent behavior, create an environment that discourages disillusionment and alienation, and instill in young people a sense of belonging and faith in the future."


Do you have any radical views? Said any radical things on a blog or forum? Belong to any radical organizations? Maybe one that advocates private citizens patrolling the border or calls the 2nd Amendment the "Reset Button"? Call yourself a "People of the Gun"?Just think what a second Clinton administration is going to be able to do with all these cool new toys left hanging in the toolshed. We're all terrorists now, baby.

Well, I figure if they're going to end up treating me like a loon, I may as well cut to the chase. I'm going to make up a bumper sticker that says:

The voices told me to
go clean my guns.

email me if you want one of of 'em.
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There's a bomb scare on a bus in downtown Dallas right now.

I hope Sandy and Keanu got off in time.
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a double shot of sadness, straight up, sidecar of longing with a guilt chaser


I bought the new PJ Harvey cd White Chalk recently, and I finally gave it an intense listen over the past couple days. This cd is absolutely gorgeous, but the mood is quite melancholy. At moments I feel the cd is so monolithically somber that it almost seems a tone poem. Polly Jean is incredibly taltented, and I like this cd, but I think she's channeling Sylvia Plath. If you like PJ Harvey, then you can probably handle it, but if you're not a fan already, you may want to dip your toe in her pool with one of her earlier offerings first.


Tremendously lovely, exceedingly sad. I give this 4 nose-blows on the Institute of Phlegm's Snotometer™.
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I went to a Halloween party Thursday night, and dessert was a Kitty Litter cake. Have you heard of this? It's actually crumbled up white/chocolate cakes & cookies topped with caramels and tootsie rolls kind of melty and molded to look turdly.

Yeah, it was revolting, but it was funny, too. And delicious.


I found the recipe below on this site:

CAT LITTER CAKE RECIPE !!
[*NOTE: THIS CAKE CONTAINS ABSOLUTELY NOTHING THAT IS NOT EDIBLE!!*]
CAKE INGREDIENTS
1 box spice or German chocolate cake mix

1 box of white cake mix

1 package white sandwich cookies

1 large package vanilla instant pudding mix

A few drops green food coloring

12 small Tootsie Rolls or equivalent
SERVING "DISHES AND UTENSILS"
1 NEW cat-litter box

1 NEW cat-litter box liner

1 NEW pooper scooper
Prepare and bake cake mixes, according to directions, in any size pan. Prepare pudding and chill. Crumble cookies in small batches in blender or food processor. Add a few drops of green food coloring to 1 cup of cookie crumbs. Mix with a fork or shake in a jar. Set aside.
When cakes are at room temperature, crumble them into a large bowl. Toss with half of the remaining cookie crumbs and enough pudding to make the mixture moist but not soggy. Place liner in litter box and pour in mixture.
Unwrap 3 Tootsie Rolls and heat in a microwave until soft and pliable. Shape the blunt ends into slightly curved points. Repeat with three more rolls. Bury the rolls decoratively in the cake mixture. Sprinkle remaining white cookie crumbs over the mixture, then scatter green crumbs lightly over top.
Heat 5 more Tootsie Rolls until almost melted. Scrape them on top of the cake and sprinkle with crumbs from the litter box. Heat the remaining Tootsie Roll until pliable and hang it over the edge of the box.
Place box on a sheet of newspaper and serve with scooper. Enjoy!
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Thursday, October 25, 2007
OH FOR FECK'S SAKE!!!

A 7 year old has been suspended from school in New Jersey for drawing a water pistol on a piece of paper.

The case is not the first in New Jersey in which students were suspended
for depictions of weapons.

Four kindergarten boys were suspended in 2000 for playing cops and
robbers, even though they were using their fingers as guns.



Sheesh.
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The new 'vogs are here!
The new 'vogs are here!
Yip yip yahoo - footgasms two days in a row. I really need to set up pay-per-view site for foot obsession, don't I? Anyway, it only took 2.5 weeks for these shoes to arrive. Fluevog is fantastic, but I think their order fulfillment department may be running on APT or some such. Oh well, better late than never.
Anyway, these are the nearly-sold-out Scarlet by John Fluevog, only mine are kind of a charcoal gray, and they have that tooled-leather look, and this heel is some kind of engineering feat.
______________________
I must be brief, as for some insane reason, I allowed myself to be talked into going to work early Thursday for an appointment. Eek.
We get an extra hour this weekend, right?
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Wow. Tuesday was SUCH a great day for a whole bunch of reasons. The germ of an idea has been kind of growing in the back of my mind for a little while. I've been hankering to get a pair of cowboy boots. Well, cowgirl, anyway. I got a pair of Dingo fashion boots when I was in high school, but that sort of doesn't count. I also got a pretty nice pair of used boots that fit perfectly about 15 years ago, but those boots were never the same after I chased my dog into the surf in them on a beach in California. (I don't recommend it.) Anyway, I might be singing somewhere in the near future, and the combo I'd perform with is country-oriented, so I thought why not celebrate this groovy, beautiful cool day in which my sinuses feel so much better by going to look at boots that I could maybe wear onstage.

I went in the place and *sigh* *gasp* I said THAT's it! THAT is my boot. That's the pair for me. Alas! It was not to be, for an $899 pair of Lucchese was simply not what the wallet goddesses dictated today. (btw - for you furriners, that's pronounced Lew-casey. Even alluding to fromagerie is a hanging offense down here, fyi)

I settled on a modest but still cutely (?) stitched pair of Ariat boots in black leather that fit my feet perfectly. There's a really nice grain to the leather and the toe is pointy, but not too pointy. It's a rounded point. Whatever. Anyway, here's a picture. YEE HAW!

I left work in the thick of rush hour and picked through the back streets to Western Warehouse on Stemmons Expressway. They have those ginormous plate-glass windows where you can see out onto the freeway and all the miserable people stuck in cars. *smug mode* Why drive when one might be trying on footwear? It was very western zen, in a way.

Anyway, as I kept unwittingly choosing the expensive boots, the guy finally said "you have really great taste!" I said "yeah, but unfortunately, I can't afford my taste right now, I just need a basic black pair of boots." So these caught my eye, they feel great, and he said "they look incredible with that skirt, actually." Hmm, cowboy boots and black silk georgette? Yeah, I can fight through that. Actually, the edge of the skirt is not ruffled, but it is kind of sinuous and fluttery, so it really did work with the boots. I didn't want to leave them orphaned in the store, so Thelma and Louise came home with me tonight. Went out to grab dinner, and I thought going to get good barbecue is probably a good way to celebrate a new pair of cowgirl boots, so me and Thelma & Louise went for some pulled pork over at Dickey's. (that sounds wrong, doesn't it?) Anyway, I was so excited I barely touched my beans and dill tater salad.

Yee Haw, people! A day you get a new pair of boots is a very good day. Actually, in a way, I was also sort of celebrating two of the best days in a row at work I've had in a very long time. Things are going well, and I'm feeling better physically, too. By better, I mean not just better from the recent allergy/sinus thingy, but the best I've felt since I got pneumonia. YIPPEE! Maybe I sweated the last of it out at Gogol Bordello. Who knows?

Have a great day!
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Wednesday, October 24, 2007
...and one more thing... Remember May 2006 when Fran O'Brien's Steakhouse had to close and move away from the Capital Hilton because the Hilton would not agree to make the basement restaurant handicap-accessible for wounded soldiers who were treated to free steak dinners every Friday night? I think that was crappy business on Hilton's part.

Now, if a pack of granola-munching hippies whose limbs were chopped off by lumberjacks wanted handicapable access, you can bet the Hilton would've scrambled to accommodate them. I'm just sayin', also.

Priorities, darling.
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Tuesday, October 23, 2007
pH imbalance.

Are you sitting down?

I hereby pinkie swear I'm not making this next thing up, no matter how improbable or immaculately inane it may seem.

Paris Hilton is going to Rwanda for humanitarian purposes. "There's so much need in that area, and I feel like if I go, it will bring more attention to what people can do to help," she allegedly said.

Um, I think they already have enough problems of their own, Paris.

Then again, maybe you can hook up with one of those Doctors Without Borders gratis plastic surgeon guys and he can fix that lazy eye. Some have said you could use a vaginoplasty, but I don't want to be mean, so I wouldn't suggest that, but I will say that if you didn't go around flashing your nethers at paparazzi, the question of labial correction would merely be a matter of speculation, rather than one of verifiable fact. I do suggest that you refrain from flashing your fanny as you deplane, because you don't want to put those starving people off their meager feed.

As you fly home on your private jet, all warm and toasty-feeling from that mission of mercy, take a moment to thank grandpa that you plopped into a milieu that allows you to have a handbag that cost more than the price of food for a whole village in Rwanda for a year. Yeah, you go there. That's what the world really needs. Because merely giving a rat's ass is enough-- it's the thought that counts. Whatever you do, don't just send a lot of money or a big shipment of food to them, because that's so low-profile and someone might not give you credit for really caring. And we all know how much you really care about the pipples of the world.

I'm just saying.

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Holy crap!





That's hot right there.
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Monday, October 22, 2007
Along about 1985, I worked in an office where the boss lady always listened to a born-to-be-mild light pop/light jazz station, so I sat there like a veal being force-fed the most horrific offerings of the day. It was HELL, I tell you. I even reached the point where I noticed that after Whitney Houston's came something by El Debarge and then they threw in some Eddie Money with Ronnie Spector just to break it up. Yeah, they played crap in blocks in the same order every time. No hour passed without some Michael Jackson. *ugh*

Some of that garbage still haunts me to this day, but the absolute worst is the song below. I woke up with a Gogol Bordello song in my head, but it morphed into this mess, and now I can't shake it, and I have to share the madness.

Anyway, never saw the video before, and I must say the earnest face singing from under a hard-hat is a cheesy delight! Then there's all the insecure, under-energized dancing. Hmm, maybe I've underestimated this thing all along?


Yup, 20-some years later, it's still as skin-crawlingly bad as I remember. What's really tragic is that I literally haven't heard this song since I left that office at the end of '85. Yup. Still shitty. Make it go away, please? *whimper*

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Wow, here's a cool article from the Dallas Morning News about 4 muggers who have been arrested for multiple muggings since October 13. Oh, and with as elaborate a system as they obviously had, you can bet they didn't start mugging people on Oct 13. The first two were apprehended when they were driving away from a mugging late at night with their lights off and nearly hit the parked car of an undercover police officer who followed and pulled them over.
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Did anyone in DFW see the flocks (? don't know what to call it) of enormous raptors that were flying south yesterday? I call that extremely peculiar. They didn't look like buzzards, but more like some kind of eagle. I saw at least 5 groups of two dozen or more of these birds, all soaring southward, with a few stragglers here and there. Maybe it was the raptor version of a Sunday drive. Nice brisk air current, coasting along thermals. Sounds nice.

By the way, someone I know saw a bald eagle at Lake Fork last week, which is a couple hours east of Dallas. I didn't know they ever made it to our neck of the woods. This is a person with keen eyesight and not given to flights of fancy.
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I've been to hundreds of concerts over the years, and almost always, I expect to feel entertained and to have a sense of the real context from which a band's or soloist's music originates. Many times, I've expected a phenomenal show and saw something significantly less remarkable.

I saw Gogol Bordello at Gypsy Tea Room about 5 years ago, and they had at all times at least 8 people on stage, despite the smallish venue and the not-quite-capacity crowd, and they poured their very hearts into a wild cabaret-like performance that was a tour-de-force. This set a high bar for how I would consider any of their future offerings. There is an infectious joy about a group of people who love the music they are making, and who love just getting out there and reveling in that moment. Such was that previous show, and I wondered if the intimacy and the intensity could be similarly conveyed at the Granada theater, and I frankly had my doubts.

I went into the Granada Sunday night with these expectations and curiosity about how the band may have changed in the past several years. GB has been featured in a major motion picture [Everything is Illuminated] as a roving band, and lead singer Eugene Hutz played one of the lead characters in that same film. Also, their anthemic "Start Wearing Purple" was the soundtrack for the closing credits of that film. Will the high-profile spotlight have ruined Gogol Bordello? Will Eugene be less accessible, less personable onstage now that he's performed in front of billions on LiveEarth broadcast, and in that performance holding his own onstage with the scenery chewing Madonna? Will they have slicked-up their show, trimming its nose-hairs and giving it a Brazilian wax?

Hells to the No, baby!

To my utter delight, I found Gogol Bordello essentially unchanged and unaffected by anything I could even obliquely denounce as Hollywood bullshit, embracing nature and her later-life offerings of hair in unexpected places. If anything, they were more themselves than ever, putting out a well-paced show that alternated between more sedate moments and en masse audience fist-pumping and singalongs of abandon. Their old free-wheeling cabaret element in the form of dancing backup singers was the same lively, humorous touch it always has been, and each instrumentalist's mastery was evident in virtuoso performances. Particularly the violinist and the accordion players add so much depth to the stage persona, that it's almost tempting to think of the core of the group as merely those two in trio with the leader Eugene Hutz.

At one point, Eugene wryly remarked "In the midst of all this debauchery, it is easy to forget that we are actually quite sophisticated." Actually, I think he's more evolved than the average bear, and I'd say that analysis holds true for the broad cross-section of this audience, as well. Yes, Hot Topic was representing, but more than that, I saw a great breadth of age groups and personal styles that reflected true originality and forethought. There were some western-wear types, Suicide Girls, stoner geeks, older and more sedate folk, hot young things, and everything in between, all turned out and looking like a funky scramble of the best of styles spanning the past century. Yes, even some flapper girls were in attendance. I think this was the most varied and yet consistently interesting audience I've ever seen at a show, and this may be the best indicator in many years that something exciting is happening culturally in Dallas.

Songs performed included Wonderlust King, Taranta, Alcohol, American Wedding, I Would Never Wanna Be Young Again, Not a Crime, and of course, Start Wearing Purple. Mishto! is sung entirely in the Gypsy tongue Romany, and it was fantastic, and the entire audience on ground level jumped in place, so filled with electricity was the air.

As the show was winding down, a stunning girl with a Jean Seberg haircut came by and gave my sister and me a little slip of paper, inviting us to the band's afterparty at a bar down Greenville where Eugene would be spinning records, and all the band would be in attendance. It would have been grand to go and to talk to the band again, but momma gettin' too old for that mess. I drank water all night, sweated like a fiend and probably smelled like a goat, so getting home to the shower was high on my priority list. Plus, the concert ended on such a high note that gilding the lily would have been overkill. But it's nice to think how that would have been.

This was one of those times when I felt like a kid. Remember when you were at the amusement park as a child and you waited in line and rode your favorite ride, and then climbed out of the seat and headed to the back of the line for the same ride? Well, that's how I feel now: I want to go again. I didn't want this night to end. I'm disappointed that I can't make it to Austin for the Monday night show, but I'm simply too fragile to make the drive down tomorrow afternoon and then to make it back to work Tuesday. If I had any option of doing so, I'd be there. As things stand, I can't complain about just getting one dose of one of the top 4 concerts of my entire life. But I would take a second helping, if that were an option.

If you ever have an opportunity, even at some excessive effort, you really must go see Gogol Bordello and kick up your heels. No need to thank me, but I know you'll want to. I'll try to post a photo when I can access the computer at work later.

Have a great week!
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Sunday, October 21, 2007



because...

*no other song you hear will mention Diogenes
*accordions have come 'round the back way to be the über rock-and-roll instrument
*we finally have a moustachioed delight to fill the
aching void left in our hearts by the exit of Señor Dali
*this song makes me giggle and think about the red-hat ladies
*it's better to run away with gypsies than to run off with the circus



but mostly because all your sanity and wits they will all vanish. I promise. It's just a matter of time. Plus, I love when Eugene wears those stripey pants.

Oh, and there's that little bit about Gogol Bordello playing Dallas tonight. I'm still sicky and I still feel like hammered poo and I have to work on Monday, but I'm'on be dere. Maybe not in my dancing shoes. Maybe in the balcony with a box of kleenex and a blankie, but I'm going to be there.

*An NYC Gypsy Punk band, GB is comprised primarily of East European immigrants. Someone once said they sound like The Clash having a fight with The Pogues in Eastern Europe. Good stuff.

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From the "they're shitting us, right? 'cause that's got to be a joke, cause I'm waiting for the punchline, right? Right?" department comes this bit of news that's bound to change the way we live our lives and the very stars in their firmament:

George Clooney will become an executive board member of a new Swiss energy company that will develop environmentally friendly techniques for car motors and other devices, the billionaire who is setting up the firm said Saturday. No doubt, George boned up on issues relating to the combustion engine as he researched his role as mechanic/handyman on The Facts of Life. It's really great that he's taking time out from filming Oceans 47 to do something to fix the planet for the rest of us plebs.

In more breaking news, Tootie will be co-chairing the IMF, Mrs. Garret will oversee Peace Corps and Blair will be events planner for the "We the Peoples" movement for the UN.
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Saturday, October 20, 2007
I have found waffletopia: Waffle Iron Cafe at 5181 Keller Springs in Dallas right next to the tollway. M-F 6:30- 3:00, Sat 7-3 Sun 8-3

Got there near closing, but I was graciously ushered in by staff, and a wonderful waffle arrived at table in mere moments. Good stuff. I think they must make their batter like the Belgians, as opposed to the eggier version Americans seem to prefer. Yum. They also include other breakfast and lunch/sammy-type stuff on the menu, but I beelined for the waffles, natch. I don't know how it is when it's crowded, but for a brunchy-type thing, I find this to be SOOOOO much better than other breakfast-type non-diner options in the area.
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Retro 80s Weekend post.

THINK FAST:






Name 3 obsolete things from this photograph of a 1982 record executive's office: (Highlight for answers)

Ashtray
cassette tapes
vinyl records (which are like cds, kids, only they used to come in black vinyl)
You thought I was going to say Limahl, Kajagoogoo and the wall of hairband portraiture, didncha?

I never liked Kajagoogoo, really. Kelly and I were talking about Limahl as we were driving out to Bardwell Mountain last week. We especially got a giggle talking about the video for the theme to The Neverending Story in which Limahl vacillates between looking smug and stoned. I don't care how retro-hip it ever becomes, some things that happened in the 80s should be left in the 80s. Things like leg-warmers and any haircut that was ever spotted on the set of Fame!
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Mark over at Texas Fellowship lost his beloved family pet this week. If you've got a second, head on over and drop an encouragin' word.

The day after her 14th birthday, a door didn't catch fully, swung open, and my Jack Russell bitch was off to the races. I watched as a speeding car ran right over her and never even stopped. I can't tell you how horrific that was. Miracle of miracles, the car hit her squarely on the side and she rolled like a little weenie underneath, breaking nary a bone. She did have minor lacerations on her head, but apart from a case of shock, she was fine. Me, on the other hand, running for 3 blocks back to the house with her in my arms and doing more wailing and snot-slinging than a clutch of professional mourners, well, I think I shaved some time off my life that day.

But I have to say, even if my dog had died that day two years ago, it would have been worth it, if it made that woman think twice and drive slower in residential neighborhoods. As it is, we're on extended play, and I'm grateful for every day with my doglet, and too often come the reminders of how lucky I am and how things could easily have been otherwise.

Blessings to you and your family, Mark, as you mourn the loss of your family member.
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Friday, October 19, 2007
I'll tell you what it is:
It's some kind of a Texas psychobilly freakout.



damn skippy!
Dulcet offerings from Dallas' own Reverend Horton Heat from Smoke 'em If Ya Got 'em era. Still tasty after 15 years.

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Thanks to all you wonderful, sexy people who took a moment to voice your discord at KDFW's adventures in yellow journalism this week, and especially everyone who contacted the station about this outrage. I mean, hell, we all know what they really think-- that it's not enough that we're stupid enough to pay the fare for countless deadbeats in the form of confiscatory taxes, but that we ought to just lie back and let our possessions - however humble - be picked clean by a ruthless and often murderous rabble. Ironically, the sulphuric Rebecca Aguilar has declined to be interviewed about her on-camera attack, demonstrationg that she is not only yellow and vicious, but also cowardly. Thanks for showing us your true, stinking colors, Ms. Aguilar. And yes, I'd like an order of fries with that.
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Either I have a head cold from hell, or this is the be-all end-all case of allergies. At least it's all from the neck up this time. The pneumonia was neck-down. Crap. I was just starting to feel kind of back to normal. Oh well. All I know is that no amount of illin' will keep me from going to the concert I bought two tickets for this weekend. This was my birthday present to myself, sort of, and Sister is going with me. If I have to crawl, dagnabbit, I'm a'goin'.
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Crafts for cats:



Spend hours knitting a toob sock for your cat so you can make him dislike you more than he usually does.
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Uppity woman alert:



buck pennington had this site up, and I found out that I'm not allowed to play reindeer games in China. Check out your Sino-blogability at greatfirewallofchina.net

All the cool kids have been blocked. If you can read this, I'll bet you're blocked too, and I love you for it! Keep on blogging in the free world, pipples.
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Thursday, October 18, 2007
Adding insult to injury, Dallas Fox affiliate KDFW Channel 4's Rebecca Aguilar did a hatchet piece on Dallas businessman James Walton, who I mentioned in the recent post as the Dallas business owner who killed an intruder for the second time in 3 weeks. Ms. Aguilar wedged herself in Mr. Walton's car door, preventing him from closing it in the rain as she harangued him for defending himself. This is what we've come to? Next thing you know, people like Ms. Aguilar will set up a burglar's guild and turn them into another branch of organized labor.

Not only did Mr. Walton have to endure the abject horror of facing down intruders, he was excoriated by this animated piece of offal masquerading as a reporter who asked him "are you a trigger-happy kind of person? Is that what what you wanted to do? Shoot to kill?" THIS is the state of journalism? I mean, jeez, on a national/international level, we know it totally sucks, but you'd rather expect that on a local level, they'd get it right.

Here is the link where the story WAS which no longer has active video. Below is the video that KDFW was sensible enough to pull, but foolish enough to allow to air in the first place:


HERE is where you can click and make your opinion known to KDFW. Aguilar has been suspended, but I think the newsroom editor who allowed this to see the light of day should be held accountable, too. This was poor judgment all around. I have contacted the station through the comment link in this paragraph, and I intend to call and to write via snail mail today. I think KDFW should be in no doubt that the public is furious that they would allow an innocent man to be victimized by their representative.

KDFW's phone number is 214.720.4444

KDFW's address is 400 N Griffin Street, Dallas TX 75202


Thanks to the ever-magnificent Rabbit for bringing the Dallas Observer's blog to my attention which linked this story.
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HALLOWIENER.


GUESS WHO???
[high-light the space below this line to find out]
MATT LAUER.
NO LIE.

I know.

Gross.
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Wednesday, October 17, 2007
Swearing at work boosts morale.

I coulda saved some group of researchers a whole bunch of money, because I have already verified that this is true. I just don't swear in front of residents or people with whom I have to maintain a veneer of professionalism. Mostly, it's just letting fly with the potty mouth in an empty office. Some might say that's crazy. I just call it therapy.
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Some exchanges are too priceless to be forever relegated to the comments section, so I trotted this one out to the blinding daylight of the main page:

g bro said...
True story: the Mrs. and I are leaving my nephew's apartment in the Mission district of San Francisco. Guy sitting on the sidewalk sticking a needle in his arm, says to her, "Oh, don't mind me, lady. I'm harmless."

8:24 PM


phlegmfatale said...
Actually, I think I'd rather see a junkie loading up than to be squirted with San Francisco hippy breast milk, but that's just me.
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Saturday nights spent at Grandma and Grandpa's house in the Ozarks meant an endless loop of Hee Haw. Good stuff. I love that gossip song, too, but I can't find it...

HEE HAW THE NEXT GENERATION:
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Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Ahhh... at last, there is one kind of shooter that the City of San Francisco is okay with. Well, at least they are open-minded to the prospect.

[San Francisco's Department of Public Health is examining the possibility of opening a "shooting gallery" in which junkies could come and inject their illegal drugs in a safe and clean environment. All the cool cities will have one, no doubt.]


Heroin? Come on in.

Methamphetamine? First door on the right.

Smith & Wesson? You're under arrest.
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Girly product post

After off-roading, Kels ran into Northpark to grab some of a limited edition run of an old favorite product from Lush. I sat in the car and waited for her, and what she brought back - Flower Tub Bubble Bar - smelled so enchanting I knew I'd have to get some for myself. Every year, Lush takes votes from their loyal customers for which out-of-production items should be brought back in a limited run, and Flower Tub was this year's popular demand item. The bubble bars are really neat because it's like a barely-dried lump of play-dough and you hold it under the running tap and it produces mountains of fragrant bubbles. I think this has a lot of juniper in it, too.

This reminds me a bit of one of the herbal baths from Kneipp, which is great stuff, by the way. I would buy the Kneipp stuff at the Cupboard when I was going to school in Denton. That reminds me-- I miss my Victorian bathtub.

Anyway, for anyone who would have run out to Northpark to pick up the Flower Tub bars - don't bother-- I bought the last 8 tonight. Maybe next year, eh?

Anyway, it was a great bath, and I slid down in the tub into bubbles up to my ears, the water a mossy green. Now I smell all nice and flowery. I was reading a book with a green cover The Light Fantastic by Terry Pratchett. I was actually thrilled to see that someone got what looks like a curry stain on a page in the book. I wondered how such a person could have relinquished this book to Half Price Books, but I'm glad they did.

Favorite passage I've read today:

The old man had a large white horse tethered to a withered tree in a snow-filled gully some way from the circles. It was sleek, glossy and the general effect of a superb battle charger was only very slightly spoiled by the hemorrhoid ring tied to the saddle.


What's not to like, laughing as I go?
_________________________
I'm annoyed at Sephora. They (and every store these days, it seems) are so nosey and always want to enter your store i.d. info when you buy something so they can track sales, I suppose. Well, after Lush, I went to all the trouble to schlepp over to Sephora for my favorite lipsticks from Sue Deveritt and Lola. Turns out they have those brands on their website, but will no longer carry them in the store. It seems to me that if they've got all my personal information, including my frequent/repeat product purchases, they could bother to shoot out an email asking me to continue to buy these fabulous items on their site, and save me the annoyance of the two mile hike from parking lot to shop. I'm just saying. I mean, if they know what I had for breakfast and that I'm wearing my Thursday panties, well, they could share some information that helps me for a change, don't you think?

Yeah, me neither.
___________________________

Golly, I smell great. You should smell me. I smell like a garden of earthly delights. I'm not exaggerating. I mean, if you like that sort of thing, you'd agree. :P
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There's a great story somewhere on MSNBC, and thanks for providing this link, Myron!

Anyway, the mom of an American soldier in Iraq organized people to send Silly String to our troops. They can shoot the Silly string into a room or anyplace, and if there are trip wires, the silly string will lightly drape over them, thus saving lives.

Anyway, this mom got someone to send 80,000 cans of the stuff over to Iraq, which has just been shipped, apparently. It's neat to hear about a low-tech solution to the challenge of how to keep our soldiers safe.
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Monday, October 15, 2007
Three weeks ago, West Dallas business owner James Walton shot and killed an intruder in his machine shop. You'd think word would get around that Mr. Walton has a zero tolerance policy on being victimized.

Not so.

Sunday morning, less than 3 weeks after he killed the previous intruder, Mr. Walton shot and killed another intruder. I think Mr. Walton deserves some kind of award, frankly. I hope he picks off a few more losers, since word is not getting around that, um, like, breaking into peoples' homes or businesses is, um, wrong. I'm all for bringing the message to criminals in whatever language they understand.

Hats off to Mr. Walton for significant contributions to de-scumming the streets of Dallas.
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Oooohhh! Storms!

My favorite!
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ya gotta love some Red Dwarf. Kryten in "smug mode" is sheer delight, IMHO.
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Sunday, October 14, 2007
A couple days ago I got an email from a friend, saying she thought I should get out of the house. She invited me to a gathering of off-road entoosiasts, primarily Hummer-owners. I dithered and probably would have begged off, but finally, the allure of compelling something large and expensive over boulders and other unlikely surfaces won out, and I called her late Friday and agreed to come along.

A caravan of mostly Hummers headed out to east Texas Saturday morning, and the conversation was great as we drove along, laughing and howling as we went, quotes from Office Space, Idiocracy and Bubba Ho-tep being bandied about like oxygen. We turned off I-20 at Gilmer and had the misfortune of falling in directly behind a funeral procession crawling at its ubiquitous pace, and we moseyed along as opposing traffic remained pulled over on the side of the road for our passing, even though the funeral escort had already passed them. Still, it must have been an interesting and odd sight out in the country like that, seeing all those Hummers in a row.

We got to the mountain in time to run one course before the catered barbecue was ready for lunch. My friend and her fiance discussed my prospects and said that I should run something like a beginner course. I said, "yes, tadpole class, if you please." I really didn't feel anxious about it, but at the same time, I didn't want to break someone else's high-dollar toy.

Right after lunch began the running of more challenging trails, and as my friend wrestled the bucking Humbeast into submission up an alarmingly-close-to-vertical trail, I questioned the choice of barbecue. That said, I have a cast-iron stomach, but one is not generally agitated like a cocktail shaker after a meal, as rule, so perhaps that was a factor. To my relief, other than that one moment of gastrointestinal upheaval, I had no more cause for concern. *whew*

Fiance and another man worked as spotters, standing/walking near the vehicles and giving instructions at the really rough/tight spots. They were the key to no one getting stuck or rolling over, I believe.

To my surprise, in the middle of a very challenging course, fiance made me switch with my friend and I took the H3 down a rutted-out, boulder-strewn gully in the vehicle by myself. It was kind of evil of him, but in a weird way, it was very smart. I wasn't expecting to drive just then, so I really had no chance for nerves to kick in. At that point, the only option seemed to just climb in and let 'er rip. It was not as frightening as I expected, and it felt - dare I say it? - natural to be piloting that big machine.

So, I'm hooked: it may not be soon, and I may not be able to afford a new Hummer, but sometime in the nearish future - like in the next few years - I really want to get an off-roadish something-or-other. I really did like it that much. Good stuff.

The image below is not of me, but it is someone driving down that same runout that was my first run off-roading. It's much steeper than it looks in the photo, by the way.




Thank you very much to my friends for inviting me along!
---------------------------

Happy Birthday Baby Sister. I love you! Enjoy that new Cooper Mini.
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Saturday, October 13, 2007
I'm just going to throw this out there, a propos of nothing, pretty much: George Clooney is a useless tosser. Can't stand him. It pisses me off when people liken him to Cary Grant, because even though I can't picture Cary Grant covered in axle grease, I still can manage to think of him as manly. Clooney, on the other hand, seems downright girlish. Yuck.
_________________________________

Unbelievable thing happened to me today: someone phoned me up at the office and asked for me by name, and said he heard I was one of the best managers in Dallas and he'd like me to consider managing his (swank, upscale, brand new) apartment development. He came to my office and talked to me for about an hour, basically an impromptu interview. OMG. Anyway, after another week of trials that have to do with petty ego issues, well, it didn't break my heart to consider other arrangements. It made me feel SO much better. I won't go anytime soon, though, because my boss has been a great advocate for me and I couldn't leave her in the lurch like that. It just FEELS better to know that someone out there sees & appreciates. I'll try to hold onto that feeling for the next time the rollercoaster plummets to the depths.
__________________________

Saturday I'm going to do something really exciting, and I hope to post pictures here for the Sunday post. Yay!

Y'all have a great weekend!
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Friday, October 12, 2007
speaker tweaker was talking about his CHL and how some folks he knows seem to regard him differently (in a not-good way) when they realize he's carrying. This reminded me of something I observed last weekend. There's a convention hall in Dallas at Wycliff and Stemmons where a large gem and jewelry show happens at least twice a year, as well as lots of other trade and open-to-public shows. Along about June or so, I was on my way to a place directly west of that locale, and happened to go through their parking lot when a gun show was installed in the venue. To my surprise, one of those little elevated police observation towers was in the parking lot, watching everything. People were coming and going with their firearms, and I thought it was ironic that the center or the event organizers thought the police were necessary, because at that instant, I thought "wow, the only place in town where I'd be safer would be at my dad's side." I shrugged and went on.

This past weekend, I went to the gem and mineral show where people are coming and going carrying in some instances thousands of dollars worth of product, and sometimes that product could fit in the palm of a rather diminutive hand. I didn't think much about it until I was leaving the place with a (cheap, low-quality) bag of diamonds for some pieces of art-jewelry I have planned. I thought about security as I walked to my car alone, and I looked around the parking lot: no police, no security patrol, nada. Then I felt the slightest twinge of vulnerability.

What were they expecting of the gun-show crowd? A gang war? Dogs and cats living together? What? But all those gem-show people are on their own? This seems a little upside-down, to me. Is my thinking warped?
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I don't know why it didn't occur to me yesterday, but I just realized that for those of you who only know the typical mosquito, you can't have a sense of scale from the cranefly/skeeter photos I posted yesterday. I'm going to operate on the assumption you all have a sense of the size of a plain-jane ever-tormentin' mosquito and simply post a picture of a Cranefly that gives some sense of their real proportion:



I've seen them all my life and I know they don't bite, but I still find them alarming at first glance.
____________________________

I've told you about the company owner being a total jerk to me recently. Well, after he was such an asshat, I decided the sensible thing was for me to follow my own instincts and stop waiting for permission of the powers-that-be when actions need be taken. Anyway, I made a decision and set it in motion, and my boss (who has ever been my champion) was upset at me for my choice. She asked me about it and I defended my decision. I worried that I'd irrevocably damaged the trust she had in me. I called her at the end of the day and said I was sorry and that I wish I had presented my case in a different way, and she apologized for her reaction. She said she saw that my choice was the right thing to do, and she said "sometimes when the general is wrong, the corporal has to take action." Anyway, it made me feel so much better after a day in which I really worried I'd been diminished in her regard. In a strange way, it made up for all that other recent unpleasantness to know that despite her instincts to the contrary, my boss could consider my view and support me therein.
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Thursday, October 11, 2007


We have a huge kind of mosquito-looking thing in the south called a cranefly. Grandpa told me they were "galnappers" and that's what I've always called them. Several times recently, though, I've had people tell me they were male mosquitoes, and I didn't think that could be true, so I just looked them up. Craneflies don't bite, and neither do male mosquitos.



The picture on top is a cranefly, and the bottom one is a boy and a girl mosquito. The boy is on the right. Anyway, it just seemed funny to me that some people believed two such dramatically different-sized insects belonged together. In any case, they are all icky, but I'll take the craneflies over mosquitos any day.
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Wednesday, October 10, 2007

THE EMPEROR'S NEW PAINTING...

Here's my favorite steaming pile of horse shit from the news this week:

A young French artist is being prosecuted for planting a kiss on an all-white canvas in a gallery by American abstract painter Cy Twombly. This all-white painting is allegedly valued at $2.84 million dollars.

Not pennies: dollars.

Some pretentious asshole bastard painted a canvas ALL ONE COLOR and this is deemed a piece of art worth more than most of us will see in a lifetime. What a load of crap! They think cleaning/restoring the painting will cost in the neighborhood of $50,000.

Staggering. Earl Scheib could fix that painting for $99.99. I'm just saying...

I say good for that heifer for planting some color on the thing that at least made it interesting.
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Last night I dreamt I was shopping in a 99 cent store with Gogol Bordello, and they had these fabulous Christmas trees made out of soft drink cans from Thailand. Then I woke up thinking of this song by the Cramps:



Bikini Girls With Machine Guns
Stay Sick!
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I went to see Becoming Jane on Tuesday night at .50 night at the dollar theater. It was worth the half-dollar to see all the supporting cast, but I kept thinking how much better it would have been to see an actual English actress playing Jane Austen, rather than Anne Hathaway and her spotty accent.

Anyway, Jane Austen was no great beauty, and while Miss Hathaway can be almost frightening with her peculiarly large eyes, I think she's not nearly plain enough to evoke a true sense of the sad author.

The supporting cast included Maggie Smith, the marvelous Julie Walters, James Cromwell, and the haunting blue eyes of James McAvoy. The costumes were nice, the sets and scenery were lovely. Actually, the lighting seemed more naturalistic than one generally sees on film, and although it was distracting in a way, I really liked that.

I really wanted to like the film, but it seemed rather disjointed. Some scenes the dialogue was completely rushed and trying very hard to seem clever, while other scenes seemed more well-paced and built suspension nicely.

Worth watching if you like that sort of thing, but you may feel you've seen it all before and done better, at that. Worth watching if you want to see Mr. Tumnis get lots of face-time on screen.

OK - I have to say one good thing for this film - it doesn't have the big Hollywood, pat happy-ending event (not referring to a massage feature here). Some characters sublimate their own wishes and possible ultimate personal happiness for the well-being of others, which is a rare theme in the cinema of today. For that degree of restraint, I do find the film at least commendable. If you're someone who can't get enough of the regency-style costume dramas, you'll probably love it, and I wouldn't criticize you for it. It's just that we've seen a lot of that in recent years, and two productions in particular were so impeccably done that they will likely excel all future efforts at realizing Austen's novels. Of course, I refer to Emma Thompson/Ang Lee's Sense & Sensibility and the BBC miniseries production of Pride & Prejudice starring Jennifer Ehle which are exceptional productions. (The Keira Knightly film of P&P is breathtaking to look at, but she's so marble-mouthed that Austen's brilliant, pithy text seems D.O.A on her lips).
_______________
Sometimes, something you expected to be rather ho-hum and too-clever-for-the-room will surprise and delight you.
Such was the case with a film I put on DVR last week, Everything Is Illuminated, starring Elijah Wood and this fabulous Russian guy, Evgeny (eugene) Hutz, who is the lead singer of Gogol Bordello. [GB is coming to Dallas in two weeks and I tell you, I can feel myself slipping into full-on chihuahua mode, I am so excited!] Anyway, this movie is at turns tragic and hilarious. It's melancholy and bittersweet, but I think it's ultimately incredibly uplifting in a very subtle way. I can't recommend it enough.

A young American man travels to Russia to find a woman who helped his Jewish grandfather escape the Nazis during WWII. He hooks up with a cheesy hip-hop Russian playa' and his grandfather who act as his tour guides as he searches the countryside. The search ends up being transformative for all three men in unexpected ways. This is one of my favorite movies since the turn of the century, and definitely in my top 50 of all time.

Let me know if you see it, and if you like it. Directed by Liev Schreiber.
_________________
Happy birthday to the Bad Tempered Zombie, you fabulous thing!
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Tuesday, October 09, 2007
No longer just the favorite of gentlemen - now even orangutans prefer blondes, although they have a taste for the skeez-factor. A 31 year old male orangutan in the Amsterdam zoo was brought in for special breeding purposes, but to the frustration of the red-butted females in his environ, the only females who made his bobber float were the blonde-and-tattoed humans who paraded through the zoo. Apparently the keeper who reared him from infancy(baby ape-dom? what do you call it?) was a tattoed blonde and this has sparked his little fetish thingy. They're going to reunite him with a female he had relations with previously in England, hoping to re-spark their love connection.

They need to give that monkey some tequila.
____________________________

Meanwhile, you can buy a modern abstract painting by an elephant - click here for details. A not-for-profit group has trained painting elephants in various Asian countries, particularly Thailand, and these elephants are singing for their supper, as it were. The money fetched by the canvases goes to support these elephants and their sweet, cushy lifestyles as rich and famous temple elephants, or some such. Dude, these paintings look at LEAST as good as a Jackson Pollock.

I think they're cute.
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Monday, October 08, 2007



You Are Destined to Rule the World



You have the makings of a very evil dictator...

Which is both kind of cool and kind of scary!

Will you rule the world? Maybe. Maybe not.

But at least you know that you could.

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Bonne fête á moi!

Cake, anyone?

ImageChef.com - Custom comment codes for MySpace, Hi5, Friendster and more
ImageChef.com - Custom comment codes for MySpace, Hi5, Friendster and more
ImageChef.com - Custom comment codes for MySpace, Hi5, Friendster and more
Oh, heck, I just had a sugar crash. I'm going to celebrate by snuggling up with Terry Pratchett.


__________________
Sunday was great at Mom & Dad's house. My sister's birthday is within a week of mine, as is my B-I-L's, so we have a shared celebration. Mom prepared a feast including my favorite dish, and we had a grand time.

Sis & her family had to leave earlier, but my brother lingered and we all sat around savoring the delights of family lore.

Actually, I recalled the time when grandpa had a bunch of hogs in one area of his farm, and the rats were getting after the hogfeed, and something had to be done.

Dad brought a great length of industrial ventilation hose to the farm, and they hooked it up to the tractor extending down into a rathole and turned it on, exhaust pouring into the rat-warren. Smoke coming up out of the ground far & wide indicated where more holes needed to be blocked. I was the littlest, so I really didn't (appreciate or) get to join in the festivities, but everyone else in the family got to stand around with a bat or a length of pipe with which to greet any escaping rodents. When the rats wearied of breathing tractor fumes, they finally came spilling up out of the earth like a foetid fur eruption, and everyone commenced to whack the crap out of the varmints. None survived the ordeal. Even though I didn't really participate, I'm glad I got to experience this - it's always been a very vivid memory for me.


Dad told his father he'd seen a massive copperhead go down into a hole, and Grandpa directed him to put the hose into a nearby hole, and they smoked the snake back up, then Grandpa shot it with a .22 from where he was seated on the tractor. The copperhead turned out to be 41" long, which is rather large, and these are a heavy-bodied snake, as it is. Dad also told us something I never knew, which was that pit vipers give birth to live young like a shark - the snakes form and develop inside an egg that stays in the mother's body until hatching. This includes snakes like the copperhead and its cousin the cottonmouth(water moccasin) and those pesky rattlesnakes. So, if you see round eggs in the garden, a rattler has not nested among your Bachelor's Buttons. That's a load off, innit?

Anyway, I also mentioned (but brother didn't remember) the time I followed him to the back pond on grandpa's farm, and I called to him, pointing out a snake very near me. He picked up a rock and smote that snake, bursting the flesh from its casing like a piece of popcorn. The meat of the snake looked white, actually and it writhed in a flurry of coils and exploded snakeflesh like a dusty little flamenco dancer. Popcorn is exactly what I thought that day - it was fascinating. I was relieved he had such good aim.

There's a lot of that in my family-- good aim. I've been trying for months to work in a reference of how Dad killed an armadillo with a precisely deployed Dr. Pepper bottle from about 40 or so feet. And there you have it. Anyway, some animal-rights folk in the family were outraged, but we continue to think this is a funny story. I mean, crap! Armadillo carry disease and are the opposite of an endangered species - having made their way north all the way to Canada, by now. Someday, we'll hear reports of armadillos in Central Park.

If I were an armadillo, I'd rather be killed by a Dr. Pepper bottle than to be killed because I'm so stupid that when I'm on the highway, I jump straight up and and commit suicide on the undercarriage of a speeding vehicle as it passes over me. I know, we're talking minor degrees here, but the Dr. Pepper bottle seems so much more dignified a way to go than to be served up on the half-shell.

Blah blah blah. I'm rambling.

Anyhoo, have a fabulous 8th, people. I will. For what it's worth , the great Chicago Fire started on this date in 1871. And just remember that while beastly souls like Jesse Jackson, Soon-Yi Previn-Allen and Chevy Chase clawed their way into existence on this date, there is Johnny Ramone and Sigourney Weaver and me to balance things out, and all is well.
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Sunday, October 07, 2007
WIENER DOGS!



What freaky, wonderful little animals. Strongly suspect they are hatching plots constantly...
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The lovely Lin directed me to Exile in Portales' blog to see this video.

Suffice to say it warmed the cockroaches of my black little heart. Rock on, Jim Brossard!
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How about some nice celebrity dish, for a change?




Remember Karen Allen, the actress who was in Raiders of the Lost Ark and Animal House? (I think she was in Starman, too, which I really liked.)




Well, she's a knitter. She's been hand-knitting all her life, but in 2002 she decided to study textile design at the FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology) NYC and now she has a line of beautifully patterened cashmere knitwear and she has a knitting shop in Great Barrington, Massachusetts.




Check out her website to see some of her gorgeous textiles. Well done, Karen!
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Saturday, October 06, 2007
Heaven knows I loves me some luxury.
You already know about my label-whoredom, so I won't abuse your intelligence by stating otherwise.
I've always been a smoke-em-if-ya-got-em kind of gal, and by that I mean that if you can comfortably afford even an extremely extravagant item, well, I see no reason why not.



Now, just for grins, I was looking on the internet at diamond watches tonight for *ahem* a friend who might buy one sometime soon. I'm just saying. Anyhoo, I recalled seeing a Tag Heuer stainless steel watch with a diamond bezel about a year ago that really floated my bobber, so I decided to look it up, see if anyone had a great deal on one. I entered a search on a jewelry site for "Tag diamond watch." Well... Then THIS popped up:




THEN I saw the pricetag of a whopping $4700 + change, a savings of 32% from the MSRP of $6995. I kid you not. But wait! There's more: this is a men's watch. I'll bet bidet-boy would love this watch to go with his eye-buzzing orange polyester golfing pants. I must say that even on sale, yea, though it be 75% off, if you spend thousands of dollars on a digital watch with diamonds, you simply have too much money.

Send me some. I'd use it properly.

Pinkie swear!



I'm off to the gem show on Saturday where I won't be buying watches, but I WILL be celebrating my birth weekend...
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How smart are you?
Am-I-Dumb.com - Intelligence Test
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Friday, October 05, 2007

My day has been ruined by this photo, and now it's your turn.


For once, I actually wish I saw underwear sticking up out of that mess. For goodness' sake, put some clothes on, you filthy whore!

The vomitorium is the third door on the right.

You're welcome.

___________________

While I'm on a roll, how about the morons who refer to their transmission as a "tranny." A tranny is a transvestite or transexual. Full stop. I don't care what your uncle Bubba called it.

___________________
Rollover to voice mail on cell foams. I am on the phone half the day at my job, and that's fine, but when I return someone's call and it automatically rolls me over to voice mail, well, I'm ok with that too. But then they call me 10 minutes later and say "Oh, I saw you called" and I say "did you listen to my message?" and 9 out of 10 times they say "oh, I just couldn't get to the phone in time" and I then have to unfurl the whole nine yards I just spooled out onto their dad-burned voice mail. I'm going to stop leaving messages altogether. The irony is that if they'd listen to brief but detailed message, there would often be no need for further conversation. Actually, the message I get from the other person is that they have no respect for my time and the effort it took for me to return their moronic-assed phone call in the first place.

Why does a mud hut on the Yukon sound more like paradise with each passing day?
______________________________

Funeral fun: Mausoleums 'R' Us!

Burial plots go duplex/fourplex/condo. The "Atkinson" looks like a 3 port storage unit. Squint a little and you can see the orange corrugated metal doors.

Then there's the "Gilinder" which looks like a dam from the public works projects of the Depression era. There's something grave (did you see that? grave?) and comforting about this monument that says "this sturdy thing put food in the mouths of hungry families. Generations of stonecutting families from the granite gulags outside Genoa have honed their mad skills to make this monument possible. Keep on rocking in the bereaved world."
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128341845642968750spartanstoni.jpg
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Thursday, October 04, 2007
Most idiotic news headline I've seen in yonks:
HYBRID CARS CRITICIZED FOR BEING TOO QUIET


I'll let that sink in for a second.

This just goes to show that it's always something. The problem here is that blind people walking around city streets can't hear the bloody flipping electric cars approaching. Heaven forbid that anyone should have to look out for the asshat pedestrians who may be staggering out into the streets in front of their vehicle.

SO, not only do we have to yield a staggering number (read: ALL) of the prime parking spots at any public venue or retail space to the handycapables who may want to park there, but we have to worry about them hearing our vehicles? Maybe these electric cars could have a little bar extending from the fender that we could clothespin a playing card onto so that blind people could hear them approaching? Bonus - all the cool kids will have one!

Well, DUH! Let's just all sit at home on our hands and do nothing because someone might get offended or have their COMPLETELY ARTIFICIAL mobility (in a world where they wouldn't have lived to adulthood mere centuries ago) limited because people want to drive these blasted environmentally sensitive vehicles. Or whatever. It's all just a hot mess.

Here's a newsflash for ya, news we can all use: Life involves risk! There's dangerous stuff in the world. We're all going to die of something. All this bubble-wrapping of children and protecting people from themselves only ensures that the morons live to breeding age, and it takes some of the risk, fun and adventure out of life.

Just because being born is a death sentence is no reason to run around screaming about the sky falling constantly.

Jeez. Get a grip. And while you're at it, get off of my cloud.
It's my birth month, for crying out loud.
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I love Amy Sedaris for going on the Martha Stewart Fine Living show and managing to say "bong water" and "blue balls."
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Wednesday, October 03, 2007
I was telling my dad the heart-warming tale of a ridiculously mis-begot gun buy-back program in Chicago that Xavier recounted here in this superb July 30 post called Robin Hood of the Gun Buyback. Go there and read it when you get a chance - I promise you'll be giggling like a maniac. I did. Incidentally, it was this post that compelled me to add Xavier Thoughts to my blog roll. Anyway, in that post, Xavier tells the story of a gun buyback in which a noble group of gun entoosiasts gather a bunch of gun-shaped glorified pot-metal for which they receive many hundreds of dollars, the proceeds of which went to buy ammo for an NRA Youth shooting camp. Rock on! Anyway, great, fun reading.

When I told me Da about that story, he said it reminded him of one his dad told him. This was in the 1940s in the area of Kokomo Indiana, where my dad's family lived at the time. Apparently, all the farms in the area were so plagued by crows that the local officials offered $1 per pair of crows feet turned in at a central location.

Well, these old boys who lived out in the country had a giant roost on their property where thousands of crows came home every night. These guys knew a money-making venture when they saw it. During the next day, they booby-trapped the entire roost area with big bags of pea-gravel with a stick of dynamite in the middle and a blasting cap as the cherry on the cake. When all the birds got good and settled that night, they set off the dyn-o-mite, and the next day they picked through nature's bounty.

They walked into the place the next day with two enormous bulging bags. The officials told them "now, you know you weren't supposed to bring the whole birds in--just the feet." One of the fellows said "Yeah, we know. That's all we brung ya - just the feet."

Anyway, these guys cleaned out the entire funds allotted for the crow feet reward.

Good times, eh?
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Tuesday, October 02, 2007
OMG! I am so totally in love:



She's my role model. From now on, I'm running my property like she runs her household. *ROWR!*

Now, how do I get my hair to do that bouffy-flippy thing?

[am NOT addicted to YouTube. Can quit any time. Don't want to.]
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In the news across the pond - that snippy lady who runs The Weakest Link is newly divorced from her husband of 27 years.

When being photographed for an article on the divorce in The Mirror, John Penrose asked the photographer "Should I look happy, or should I look sad?"

Hmmm, let's see: He's escaped a shrieking harpy with 30 million pounds (about $60,000,000) and a $1,200,000 Cotswold cottage.
Um, I'm thinking "happy" is the only believable tack to take on this one.
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I know I've been posting a lot of videos lately. That's me: ever-so-slightly wound up, and at this point, of course, I'm celebrating me birth month. WOOHOO!

Even if you don't like this sort of thing, this is one of the most amazing dancers I've ever seen. He goes by Poppin John and this was taped in February of this year. I like this video so much that I can almost forgive the 80s for being so very 80s. Almost.

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It's disgusting to hear about the slaughter of all those people in Burma. I keep thinking about what happened in Cambodia, how 25% of the population were murdered by Khmer Rouge, and I wonder how things will really unfold for the Burmese as they have no ability to overcome the corrupt government that has bedeviled them for decades.

I keep thinking of Gandhi's methods and the fact that in order for passive resistance to work, there needs to be some sense of shame on the part of the agressors. In cases such as Khmer Rouge or asshats like Hitler or Pol Pot, there's no question of shame, no matter what anyone in U2 says. The peoples' ploughshares will not keep them alive.

Burma is a multi-nation state and most of these ethnicities don't recognize the military government that's been terrorizing them, but that certainly won't keep that government from oppressing them all. It's a mess, and I hope the people will rise en masse and overthrow the goons, but the average Burmese citizen has to rely on the good intentions of the gubmint, and the gubmint relies on their monopoly of fire power and so it goes and has gone, really, for decades, with little hope of change.

There's a movie based on a true story of an American doctor who got stuck in Burma (in the 80s, I think) called Beyond Rangoon. Laura Bowman was traveling and missed her flight out of Burma and got stuck there during a military crackdown. I'm sure there's no end of over-simplification and embroidery in the film, but the man who plays the professor-turned-tour-guide is reenacting his life, basically, and his role in Laura Bowman's story.

I don't have anything brilliant or insightful to say about this, but I do keep remembering other times in recent history when it's been impossible to intervene, when we knew what was happening at that very moment somewhere else and all we could do is sit on our hands. During the genocide in Rwanda in 1994, I remember news images of thousands of bodies floating from Rwanda on the river Ruzizi and spilling out into Lake Tanganyika. Unthinkable.

I wish people weren't so crappy to each other. But since so many obviously have their caps set to run roughshod over the rest of civilization, I am a firm believer in having the means of self-defense at the ready and in the hands of the common man. I think we all need to look to the world, watch and learn, and refuse to accept the kind of bullshit other nations are being forced to accept, be they European players overrun by religious fanatics or a disarmed public who must do the bidding of the military junta du jour.
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Monday, October 01, 2007

OOOOH! Storms!

My favorite.
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COYOTE TRAVEL

...in which some misbegot nice lady missed out on the memo about how one is supposed to chew one's own arm off...
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Whew! I feel so refreshed!

Sorry I dropped a stitch there - meant to post for Sunday, but was tied up with extended family bidness and finishing a scarf I've been crocheting for a couple weeks. I'm excited, because that's the first real usable crochet project I've finished in several years. Huzzah!

Anyhoo, about Saturday night:

I told little sister what I wanted from her for my birthday was for us to go to the Dallas Observer "Best of Dallas" awards Saturday at House of Blues. This was my first time in HOB, and I must say it's a marvelous venue. I'll look forward to seeing a band there. However, it was well evil to consider waiting in the interminable line to get a free drink, so I went to the paying bar where $10 (I know! Evil was everywhere) fetched a couple bottles of Stella Artois. I joined my sister in line for the buffet, and the food was great.

We ate and drank our beers and decided we were too cool for the room - much of the crowd seemed like a cookie-press gridwork of sorority/frat-lings, and rather unoriginal, at that. So we moseyed on over to Cafe Rembrandt, where they had Stella Artois on draught - even better. The space next door was where the venerated Starck Club was originally, a favorite haunt of mine 20+ years ago. Super cool.

Now the space is home to an 18 & up club owned by Dennis Rodman, and they have a dwarf doorman of foreign extraction. We sat side by side on the patio in front, marveling at the parade of 18-ish year old hoochie mamas streaming up to the place. Across the entry drive, always at least four and sometimes six police officers sat watching, waiting for trouble.

A person I know through work happened by and sat talking with us for a wee bit, and he said late at night, they toss scrappers out of that club bloodied and itching for more of a bust-up, apparently. Quite a step down from the oozing-cool urbanity of Starck Club. Ah, but nothing ever lasts, does it?

Anyway, we left downtown and headed back to her house where I was to spend the night. We decided to stop at a biker bar where sis used to crack the whip on the hellions as a barmaid. At least 3 M.C. clubs hang out at this joint, but it was a pretty low-key evening. Actually, one dividend of a slow night was that we only stank of smoke, rather than actually crossing over to reeking territory afterward.

We walked in and a giant doorman greeted Sis and she introduced him to me. She introduced me to a few other people and she chatted a bit. I noticed a woman with blonde hair being kind of rowdy with a pack of girlfriends at the bar, even though she didn't seem the barfly-type. She was holding a fold-out fan, and I thought this was so unusual that I instantly liked her. There was a band playing 80s hits, and we went to a table tucked discreetly back from the center of the room and did some people-watching.

Blocked from our view completely was an area populated entirely by the celebrants of a birthday gathering, but we got a good gander of them when they sashayed out onto the dancefloor. This whole group was very white, middle-class, too-recently-severely-groomed to have been bikers. The core group of four guys seemed to have been airlifted from the fratboy lot from House of Blues, except they were too old and too casually dressed. Anyway, there was this one really tall guy -- looked like a lawyer, actually -- who was sort of the ringleader rug-cutter of the lot. During the band's stirring rendition of Mony Mony à la Billy Idol, he did the most awkward, amazing "ride the pony" pantomime I've ever seen. I think he time-warped those moves from his Lone Ranger theater afternoons in the late 60s. I'm just guessing. Anyway, it was even more of a squeal-inducing delight than a midget doorman. Trust me on this one. He looked like a thirty-something man channeling a 4 year old with a stick horse - priceless.

I do wish I had photographs, though.

Anyway, during one song, the dancefloor was pretty clear, and the lady in black with the fan came out and danced with the husband of her friend. Sis told me she'd chatted with the lady in black briefly a few minutes earlier, and she'd said she hasn't been out in years, that her neighbors dragged her out. Anyway, she was having a good time and it was fun to watch her kick up her heels.

The great thing at the end of it all, actually, was realizing how much more pleasant it was to have a Dos Eqis at the biker place at half the price than to be in those other places which were sterile of smoke and of anything resembling cheerful conversation.

We came back to Sis' house still rather early, and sat on the porch talking for at least an hour. I went to bed and was awakened several times in the night by the 15-pound jelly eunuch of a cat who would go on head-butting me. I think he decided there was finally someone in the house lower on the foodchain than he was, as he's been trumped by dogs and kids and such. This morning, the real offender was the wiener dog, and she clearly thought I had no business being asleep. Bitch.

Anyway, so that was that-- my birthday come early. Thanks, Sis. I had a blast.
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Name: Phlegmfatale
Location: Elsewhere, Texas, USA

I'm not whining;
I'm unburdening.
FATALE ABSTRACTION


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