Thursday, April 30, 2009
*dim bulb alert*
Wednesday afternoon I had to hurry off to an orientation related to the job starting next week. As soon as I set foot outside, it started raining like a cow peeing on a flat rock.

I hurried to my car and yanked the door open, the top corner of which soundly smacked me on the head just forward of my left temple. It smarted like you wouldn't believe.

So I was hurrying and owchie!ing and then thought of Natasha Richardson and I thought Crap! What if I die and no one knows I stupidly killed myself with my own car door? Then I realized if I did die of stupidity, maybe it was best if I just let folks wonder.

Well, so far, it didn't kill me, and here I am: removing all doubt.
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The U-Haul Has Landed
The UHaul has been unloaded, partly into a storage unit and the rest into the house I will occupy very soon. The funny thing about this turn of events is that the house which has been generously offered me on modest terms is so much nicer than the one I was going to rent. I do have to put in a lot of elbow grease, but it's coming along with more help from those friends.

Wednesday I was motoring up the highway and noticed that for about a mile ahead and at least as far behind me and on both sides of the highway there was not a single other car in sight from the last hill to the next. Here's to a staggering lack of traffic jams.

The pups have been blissed-out playing with the children of our hosts. I think they're going to miss the excitement and energy of the kids once we are ensconced in our own place, but hopefully the big yard will be a consolation of sorts. Hopefully Mr. & Mrs. Tolewyn will let me babysit in attempt to repay their kindness, and the pups can enjoy visits from the kids.

There are moments when it is impossible to deny the intelligence of Praline. Wednesday night, the two-year-old was having quite a grand time chasing Praline around a large recliner, and every time she got very far ahead of the child, she would stop and wait for him to round the corner to continue the game. She wanted to keep him interested, to keep the chase spooling out. She's so fleet she could handily have run circles around him, yet she found more delight in the game and tempered her pace accordingly. I laughed and laughed to see her patience, as that is not a trait I tend to associate with her. Likewise, she seems to understand he's a little one, and unlike when she wants to have a struggle with adults for the ball so they can throw it and she can fetch it, she will walk up to the small child and deposit the ball at his feet. She's one intense little hairball, but her brain is working in ways which surprise me. What a dear girl.

Things look good and later today I have a follow up interview for the job I mentioned yesterday. The other job starts Monday, but it's a temporary job on a very strict probationary term, and the orientation has made me suspect the job will be rigid in ways which make me restless. We shall see. I am grateful for the opportunity, but I'm yearning for a job which will afford more permanence from the gitgo. Things have been odd and a little up-in-the-air, but in the main things have been really good and I'm very happy. I'm looking forward to feeling more settled and to be living in my new place, but the important thing is that I made it here.

*squeeeee!*
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Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Would you hire me? I'd hire me...
Tuesday morning I had a job interview. Having applied for, oh, say about 60 or 70 jobs in the last several months, I was thinking it would be fun to mix it up in interviews by paraphrasing quotes from movie weirdos. I could go on, but the exertions of the day just too too much out of me. I'm hopeful I'll get to spend my first night at my new place on Wednesday night, but it's more likely it'll be Thursday.

*************

Ya know in Planet of the Apes when Taylor and the other astronauts arrive at the edge of Monkey Mondo and you see the stretched hides of (?) chimps or orangutans(can't remember which) -- were those meant to be scarecrows, or were they the hides of dead outlaws or what? I never really got the purpose of that. Perhaps it would have been more clear if there'd been a sign that read "hitchikers may be escaped convicts."

See? Tired.

Will try to post more later today.
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Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Why isn't it surprising...
...that the White House authorized a cheap stunt which involved an Air Force One 747 flying at low altitude over the Statue of Liberty and other NYC landmarks? The purported purpose of the event was a Department of Defense photo shoot. The comments of witnesses describe hundreds of terrified people streaming from buildings as the jumbo jet made one after another fly-by. Considering the not-too-distant history of the New York skyline and big, commercial airline meesiles, it's scorchingly tacky to have done such a thing without letting the planned event be widely publicized in advance.

I just keep wondering when the MSM will finally wake up and smell the reek of cheapness? It stinks on ice.

...you know, if Bush had been in the White House when this happened, I think the MSM would be all lathered up speculating that El Prez had taken AF1 for a joy-ride. I'll bet that's what happened here. Has anyone thought of pimping a 747 ride, yet? Does anyone know the POTUS' whereabouts at the time of the *aherm* photo opportunity?
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Monday, April 27, 2009
I have the incomparable felicty...
of being a houseguest these three days in the home of the dazzlingly talented (truly indimidating, he!) Tolewyn and his pretty Mrs. and their three delightful children.

Saturday I was stressed-out, in a way, but something in me just felt everything would work out alright. Mr. & Mrs. Tolewyn took me in, and I feel so much better, and their kindness and hospitality only served to reinforce my feeling that things were going to work out incredibly well.

I can't talk longer tonight- I'm SO sleepy. Extended family of friends have come up with brilliant solutions to my problem. My first night here (Saturday night) was exhausting and that night I slept 6 hours. That extra 3 hours made all the difference. Here's to waking up to yet another brand new day on Monday.
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Sunday, April 26, 2009
change of plans...
I was not able to move into the house I'd rented as planned on Saturday - the previous tenants never vacated. Fortunately, some lovely friends have generously invited me and the pups to help myself to their sofa. I hope my snoring doesn't scare the kids.

I'm wiped out. I don't know exactly how all this is going to pan out, but I'm so happy to be here, and I know it will all be okay. :) The complexion of this situation is tempered entirely by the fact that some incredibly nice people are so generous and kind. :)

Life is sweet. Just a little unpredictable.
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Saturday, April 25, 2009
Oh what a change there'll be...
the world will see



a new phlegmmy girl!

On the road first thing today and then home at last. WOOHOO!
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Friday, April 24, 2009
Last day on the job, part deux, I sweartagahd I haven't been drinking but I can't stop laughing...
I'm working.
Really.




h/t to Blowfuzzy von Saucy
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Last day on the job...
Leaving this place is easy, really, but I didn't think I'd feel emotional about any of it. In truth, I'm so excited about waking up Sunday morning in my new home. The new job will be a nice change of pace, too, and I'll be living near dear friends and starting a new life. It's gonna be great.

Thursday afternoon was stressful. I was tied up with worky headaches on property and I came back to the office to wrap up, and found the following message in my email:

I heard that tomorrow is your last day with us at Phlegm Gardens*. I have known you for very little time but I know you have put in some time at the property. As a short time resident I want you to know that you are so great and we are losing a great manager. I am so sad that you are going but know that the future is a bright happy place with you and your new road! Take care and please be safe on your drive to your new home!!!!
Thank you again for all your help!!



What's that in my eyes? Why is my nose tingling?

omg. Typing this Thursday afternoon. One of my residents just came in to wish me well and thank me for everything. There go the waterworks.


*not really the name of the place. Ahem.
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Thursday, April 23, 2009
It has come to this...
...but I did warn you. I'm a galloping lunatic by now.



I made a phenomenal amount of progress packing on Wednesday night. Almost finished, in fact. I should handily complete the chore Thursday night, save the bare essentials I'll need for Friday. Thursday night I'll load a lot of the crystal and things I want to handle gingerly into my SUV so they don't get smushed by the truck loaders.

Friday afternoon I pick up my big UHaul truck-- I'm just that strong-- and immediately after work, I've secured a crew to load it for me. I'll lock it up for the night and get to the UHaul place at 9 Saturday morning to have my SUV loaded onto a trailer attached to the truck, and then I'm on the road. I expect to arrive at my new place about 12:30 or 1:00.

I'll be relieved when it's all done with. Miles to go before I sleep...

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Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Dear Dallas: How Do I Leave Thee?

Let me count the ways:





How about the fact that it's not bad enough that oodles of prime parking are reserved for differently-abled folk, generally sitting empty, but now, we have parking lots with the remainder of the good spots [read: MY spots-- I have ossum parking mojo] are reserved for eco-friendly/hybrid vehicle.



I shit you not.
Whole Foods Market at Gaston and Abrams
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Whistling Wednesday...
Ah-ah-ah-roooooooooooooooooooooooo!

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Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Who? Us?

Praline: Just act casual.
Chuy: Yeah. Pretend nothing's wrong.
Praline: I don't think she'll notice.
Chuy: Why not?
Praline: It looks nicer this way.
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Monday, April 20, 2009
Amazingly...
A week from Sunday I will have spent an entire day and night in my new place. I'm moving from a swank, hepcat pad in the shadows of skyscrapers and drawn from stuff of bachelorette heaven to a small house in a rugged landscape and I couldn't be happier at the prospect. I know just what I'm going to plant around the base of the house and where. I have new friends, dear ones in my new town. I've spent some time there by now, but the first time I visited, it felt like home. No expressway noise. No arena traffic. No more... well, I could go on all day, couldn't I? Suffice to say this little town, Elsewhere, is wonderful in ways to which Dallas could never aspire.


I admit I'm anxious, but I'm excited beyond measure.


Before high school, my folks moved us from Arkansas to a Dallas suburb. I now have a new appreciation for the boldness that took on my parents' part to change everything and make a go of shifting us all to this strange state. [I'm so glad they did.] During my adult life I've moved distances of 30 or 40 miles within the Dallas area, but I've never picked up and moved 4 or 5 times that many, so this is a big deal for me. This will be a very big adventure, and though I expect it will have its challenges, I know it's going to be the very best thing I've done for myself in a great long while.




My soon-to-be house is small, but it's plenty big enough for me and the pups, and I can afford it. (no more common walls. YAYS!) There's a nice little room at the back which will be great for my indoor plants and for my studio stuff. I'll probably put in a storm door at the back with a doggie flap for the hellpups. There's a shed at the back which I think will be great for my torch work. There's a garage for LouLou and a storm cellar, since I'm moving to pure-dee tornado country. Note to self: set up renter's insurance.

I'll have a dining room where I'll put the Beetlejuice bookcase, and in my mind it's all arranged. It's going to be fabulous. Did I mention I'm just a leetle bit excited?

I am.

So this post is by way of apology for whatever spazzery litters this space over the course of the next week. There may be 50 posts, or there may be 3. Or aubergine.

I cannot be responsible. Anyhoo. I'm really, rilly happy. Love ya, darlings!


Please get here soon, Saturday?

*squeeeeeeeeee!*
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Sunday, April 19, 2009
Sunday, Puppy Sunday


Chuy (see them wrinkles?) is thinking about taking the plunge. This time, though, the bubbles seemed to give him pause and he never hopped in.









Miss Praline, otoh, got misty, and too much in tub. She's such a colossal goober. Kept plunging her entire head into the bubbles and down into the water below, only to come up covered in bubbles which I had to wipe away so she could see and breathe. One of the first purchases I'll make at our new place will be one of those wee kiddie pools so she and furboy can cool themselves of a hot summer day. I think without the fragrance and bubbles, he'll be ready to go into the water again. He probably just doesn't want to harsh the mojo of his burly, manly odour. He's all of 15 pounds now, you know. What a brute!
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Saturday, April 18, 2009
Throw your hands up at me...



Elbow.

I think more bricklayers should be singing, and more singers should be bricklayers.
*cough*cough*kanyewest*cough*

But that's just me.

A week from today I'm moving. YAYS!

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Friday, April 17, 2009
Don't make me get mean.


Company owner called me Wednesday, announcing he’d be in my office in 10 minutes. That broke his perfect record of showing up unannounced the entire rest of the week.

Any the hoo, shortly after his call, two men in suits got out of a big sedan and strode into my office. One was about 6’4”, handsome 50-something, bespoke black pinstripe suit with red silk lining in the jacket, very expensive tie, pinkie rings. The shorter man, also in a suit, looked like a bit of a tough guy.

Tall Man walked up to my desk, his eyes locked on mine. He then said in a raspy voice, Chicago-ish accent “I’m Guido, this is Bruno, we need to have a little talk with you.”

Assuming these men had come to meet company owner, I decided to have a little fun. I turned one corner of my mouth up into a little smirk and said “you’re not here to break my kneecaps, are ya?” and gales of laughter erupted from Tall Man.

When he recovered his air, he said “oh, you’re good. You’re good!”

I said “take the cannoli.”

More laughter.


Counting Friday, 6 more days
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Thursday, April 16, 2009
If you really think about it...

...what the hell did the alien queen think she was accomplishing by laying all those eggs in that base when most of the ready food source (hoomans) had already been consumed? I mean, were they going to grow thumbs and fly the spacebug shuttles out to find more organic meat popsicles? It was irresponsible and just plain selfish for her to churn out all them younguns. I mean, what were they going to do-- eat each other?
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Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Tuesday meeting...
The owner of the company said it wasn't that big a deal that I would be gone, replacing me would be easy. Everyone wants to hear that, right? His assistant who is leaving in June, on the other hand, would be a challenge to replace, what with his background in urban planning and all.

I'm so glad they won't need to call and ask me how to do things after I'm gone, because it's all so obvious and any moron could do my job, right?

I know I shouldn't care, but I don't want residents to suffer needlessly just because someone didn't take time to prepare for my departure.

*shrug*

What can you do?

Counting today, 8 more days of this job, and then I'm moving home. I am counting the minutes, matter of fact.
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Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Jeez Louise!
Phil Spector is the Simpson Matt Groenig forgot to make.


ew.
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devaluation

h/t to Rabbit
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Monday, April 13, 2009
puppies... puppies...
What could be sweeter than a pair of sacked-out hounds?
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I'm all set!
I've been grumbling a bit recently at Fatale Abstraction about how I need to get out of Dallas.

Saturday I found a house and rented it in my new town, Elsewhere. This is several hours away from Dallas, so it's a comfortable distance and yet comfortably close if I simply must have a retail fix. Two weeks from now, I'll be in my new place and preparing to start a new job. The house doesn't look grand or remarkable on the outside, and in truth it's a little on the old and hinkie side, but it suits me. It's got a corrugated metal roof and I no longer have to lament leaving behind the corrugated roof on my Dallas loft.

*SQUEEEEE!*

I suppose no one likes wondering where they'll be living in one or two or three weeks, but it seems to me that in the rental industry, I see an awful lot of folks who leave choosing a new place until the very last minute. There must something liberating about that or so many people wouldn't do it. I'm not wired that way - I need things settled so I can get my feathers all smoothed out. I hate having my feathers ruffled. I spend a lot of money on pomades and nice-smelling things to keep them smooth, and it hadn't oughta happen that they get mussed.

This is going to be an adventure. It seems I spent much of my early adult life believing I'd be moving off to some exotic [to me] locale somewhere else on the planet, and then proceeded to live the years since then orbiting around Dallas. Now I'm moving to a small town where the folks are actually neighborly. Yes, I'm sure they'll also have the hangups and quirks one expects in a small place with busybodies and the usual sewing circles, but I think I'll do just fine there.

Vowing to wrap tumbleweeds in fairy lights for my Christmas yard art, I was speculating that I'd be the town weirdo. Then again, I've seen a couple of those already, and I think the price tag on my shoe collection alone would garner me a firm place in the "eccentric" rather than "weirdo" camp.

Ah well, it's good to have goals.
I can't wait to plant some flowers there. I know just how it's going to look. It'll be fabulous.

Watch this space.
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Sunday, April 12, 2009
Imagine a world with Hover Bacon!


La! La! La! La! La!
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Saturday, April 11, 2009
...and hell's comin' with me!



I keed! I keed!

No, really. Really.

Kidding!
Kidding!

Srsly.

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Friday, April 10, 2009
I'm freaking out...

...because all this time and all the gazillions of pictures of him that have been plastered everywhere, and I just noticed he has a mole. I suspect a cover-up. Most pictures published show his face at an angle where the mole is not so obvious. What does the MSM have against moles? Moles are people too. Or, little furry rodents, anyhoo.
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Thursday, April 09, 2009
curious terminology...
Headline:
Suicide Victim Jumps, Lands on NYC Shopper

Victim? Why not Suicide Perpetrator?

I mean, it's not like the jumper was just some random wrong place/wrong time garden-variety victim. She sort of, uh, made it happen.

I remember seeing an article on a local newscast where a guy had been apprehended by police in the midst of beating the crap out of someone. A few sentences later the newsreader referred to the brute as a "gentleman."

Uh, excuse me? It's not a gentleman until proven guilty. Also, caught in the act is pretty unambiguous, imho.

Why are so-called professionals so clunky with the language? This ain't rocket surgery.
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Hmph.
A lot of people -- even Dallasites -- are surprised to learn that Dealey Plaza (where Kennedy was shot) used to be underwater. Before the public works projects of the 1930s, that area was the basin of the Trinity River. That part of the river was picked up and moved west about a mile or so. Not only was that the Trinity River basin, much of what is now Downtown Dallas is technically floodplain, and would be more than a teeny bit wet if we had one of those 100-year floods everyone always talks about.

One major bone of contention in local politics and city planning is that between the high levees of the current Trinity riverbed, local officials have been trying to do billion$ in development of parks and recreation/entertainment areas. We've voted, people have argued, and it's looked to me like the city government is going full-tilt-boogie with it all whether we like it or not. Add to that the fact that they are trying to build a taxpayer-funded billion $$$ hotel attached to our convention center and without us having the ability to vote yea or nay and a lot of folks in Dallas are seeing red.

Now our local gubmint is barreling ahead with plans for this Trinity river development and feigning ignorance of reports from the Army Corps of Engineers. Here's an article on the looming disaster from the free local weekly Dallas Observer.

I suppose if the federal government makes a habit of throwing money down holes, why should it surprise that the locals do so as well? On the other hand, it's fun to imagine that at least on a local level, there would be some accountability brought to bear.

Sometimes, less is more. How about for once we stop spending when a project looks like a disaster-in-the-making? I suppose that would make too much sense, though, wouldn't it?

Meh.
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Wednesday, April 08, 2009
...in keeping with the humiliation theme...

...and lest you mistakenly think I'm not the biggest dork you've ever heard of...

I always wanted to be a singer. In my heart of hearts, I've always known I was meant to wail it out and do a lot of very fancy yelling, bending the entire universe to my sublime will. There've been a couple hiccups along the way, though.

Grandpa would play guitar and insist I sing Skip to My Lou and I wanted-- really and truly wanted-- to sing, but I felt shy and embarrassed. I know: go figure.

In fifth grade, my best friend was a girl named Karen.
Karen had nary a shy bone in her body. She was super cool. Her face was dusted with freckles, her dark hair falling in lank strands to her shoulders, and I was transfixed on that broken front tooth which I thought made her look really special. Gosh, I wished I could have a broken front tooth.

[Uh, hello! Warped. You already knew this.]

Anyhoo, my quest for world domination seemed finally to be taking off when Karen (not me!) had the brilliant ideer we should sing a duet in the school talent show.

Jimmy Sides played his guitar and sang "Operator." He was so cool, and, y'know: mature. All the other fifth grade boys were so dorky. In retrospect, I'm sure Jimmy would have preferred to play something by KISS. I like to imagine the Jim Croce number is a secret shame he carries to this day, much like the song I'm about telling you here, and that his parents prolly made him sing that song.

.
Karen was adamant we should sing in the talent show. I had a better voice, better style and sense of nuance, etc., but all that didn't matter a whit. Karen had in spades a trait I utterly lacked: sheer and abiding gall. I wanted to sing something pretty I'd heard on Lawrence Welk. Karen had the brilliant idea to sing the horrid song featured below. Honestly, I can't bring myself to write the very name of this wretched song. Horrors. Horrors!

So, anyhoo, we *cocked brow* decided we'd sing (sans yodeling) this rather than the Lawrence Welk 'stravaganza. Mom thought this song was just adorable. *cringe* The audition was fine-- we had to sing for a gaggle of teachers. It's easy as can be to sing in front of people you don't respect. *yawn* Bastiges. However, come the day of the talent show, the whole of the rest of the 5th grade through 12th grade, parents, faculty et al? Guar-damn-teed constipation cure. Srsly.

I rather fancy Karen had to drag me out onto the stage. Once at its center I stood there mute and dying inside as Karen sang her little fifth grade balls off. I swear I was crying, but I don't know. I heard the blood rushing through my own veins, my breathing enormous and labored. The gym beyond the proscenium telescoped out, accordion-like till all the universe was that room awash in faces and eyes and bad 1970s fashions. The accompanying music clattered on gaily, so cheerfully that it fairly begged for a bloody nose.

I think I didn't utter a single peep the entire song.

Surreal torturefest ended, we turned toward the wing and I stumbled zombie-like as I looked over at Karen, who was smiling out at the audience as she marched resolutely offstage. I remember seeing the kind, pitying eyes of Miss Fogelman as she ushered us through the huge, heavy velvet curtains. Thank goodness that is over!

It's amazing how silly moments will stay with you, isn't it? No, I'm not embarrassed now. Singing in front of people doesn't bother me at all these days. However, if I had to sing this song in front of anyone, even my puppehs, it'd probably kill me!




don't tweedle-dee-dee me.
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Tuesday, April 07, 2009
I can't stop giggling at this:


Chiweenies are such cute dogs. Ya gotta love such a happy and sweet critter.
Happy Tuesday, people!
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Monday, April 06, 2009
Hold still, Dallas!

Yes, just like that, the light hitting your face just so... I'll always remember you like this.


A place for big weenies.


Plastic ones.

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Sunday, April 05, 2009
April 5 Sunday, Puppy Sunday


Nice weather means we've been hanging out in the back this week, reading, petting profusely and finding new ways to shred a Kong. Toys don't stand a chance with Fraulein Mandible. Chuy, otoh, is all honey, sweetness and light.
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Tex Edwards and the Swingin' Cornflake Killers

I just got home from seeing Tex & Co perform at the Barley House over on Yale. That venue was The Green Elephant for a long time, but I'd never been there before. You know you're too old for the room when you sit there worrying that your chariot might be towed. Call me a dullard.


Tex did the usual complement of murder/death row/psycho songs, as well as the timeless "Lee Harvey was a friend of mine." All around excellent musicianship, I especially enjoyed the lead guitar and the steel guitar. High point for me, musically, was their marvelous rendition of the Floyd Cramer classic "Last Date." Good stuff. Throw in a little Conway Twitty as well as a trucking song of yore, and you've got the makings of a toe-tapping, thigh-slapping good time.


I wore the Betty Boop platforms (so comfy, for 6"!) and demurely sipped a cranberry juice, ensuring a topple-free evening. The bar didn't charge for my booze-free drinks, so I used $20 to buy a couple cds from Tex himself. He said he recognized me and I said I used to see him play at Naomi's, and that was 16 or so years ago-- a lifetime. Funny, because I don't even recognize myself. Anyway, was a nice way to spend a Saturday evening in Dallas.
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Saturday, April 04, 2009
I gotta get a Cadillac
Not really, but...


Once a little over 20 years ago I went to Arkansas with Dad to visit my grandparents. I popped a Stray Cats cd [er, it was an album ;)] into the tape deck and we rolled on down the line. Dad liked it. I thought that was so cool that he could enjoy music I loved. Road trips with Dad have always been the best even when I was a little kid. I can drive around for days on vacations, just looking at things, and there's something stirring and satisfying about hitting the road just to see what's out there. I'm glad my family never flew anywhere when I was a kid. When I finally started flying for vacations on trips to Europe in my 20s, I always felt like flying was cheating all the sights and landscapes I was flying over.

Here's to taking time to stop and smell the roadside attractions.
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Friday, April 03, 2009
A few dance pointers


See? Easy peasey!
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Thursday, April 02, 2009
ooooooh, come to mama!
When the Zombopocalypse happens, you bring the firing irons, I'll bring the Zombie Stompers.


Drool Mode: Full-on Slobber
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Wednesday, April 01, 2009
Mortgage Meltdown revisited
Way back on September 26 I posted a video called Mortgage Meltdown which showed legislators like Barney Frank protesting muchly to the tune of "Fannie and Freddie don't know nuthin' about birthin' no problems."

Today I read that Barney Frank thinks folks like himself should have the ability to set wages of employees in private companies in the USA. Hmph. Funny how there's no mention of salary caps for film stars or athletes, or politicians, for that matter.

Anyhoo, before Barney Frank is given the keys to regulating yours or my incomes, I think we need to revisit what a brilliant job he did manning the helm of the capsizing Fannie and Freddie programs. I went back to this video I posted here, and it turned out it had been banned by Time Warner on YouTube. It all stinks on ice.




I think the other version included c-span clips of Barney Frank and others protesting the implication there needed to be investigation into Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, saying there was no problem with these loan guarantors. If Barney Frank was supposed to be minding the store on the mortgage industry and failed so miserably, how can anyone think he's capable or worthy of riding herd on private industry?

Creepy.
April fools, indeed.
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Name: Phlegmfatale
Location: Elsewhere, Texas, USA

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


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