søndag, december 31, 2006

New Year's Snow

It's New Year's Eve, friends, and the rain has turned to snow mid-day here in Saint Paul. Bundle up!


onsdag, december 27, 2006

Tax Return Pasta

Is it really that long ago? Was it in fact the year 2001, 2002, or 2003 during which the government emptied out the Treasury and gave us all money back on our taxes? That whole vote-buying fiscal conservative's argument that a government should not make money, save money, or pay down debt...but should amass multi-trillion dollar debts, fail to pay the United Nations money owed (using there the argument that we provide military strength...for operations the UN doesn't approve of, hello), etc.

I got $300 back that year, whenever it was.

If they were going to empty out our nation's security [sic], I wish instead of being given $300 we all would have been given $280 and a copy of Patricia Wells's outstanding Trattoria cookbook.

My favorite of the recipes (or how I make it) is this:

Penne with Spicey Cream Sauce

* Hot pepper flakes
* 3 cloves garlic, finely diced
* 1 lb of penne (This is a standard box)
* 1 can crushed tomatoes (a 28-ounce can)
* extra-virgin olive oil (between 1/8 and 1/4 cup)
* heavy cream (what you might put in coffee)
* salt and fresh black pepper to taste

Extras you may like
* parmesan-reggiano cheese, finely ground (1/8 cup)
* fresh basil, finely diced
* vodka (I prefer Grey Goose), one to two shots, added with cream
* red wine

1. Set pasta water to boil. When it's ready, warm olive oil in another pan, about medium heat.

2. Drop pasta into boiling water. In second pan, add the pepper flakes. Add the garlic. Cook for 90 seconds. (Do not burn the garlic, of course.) Add the tomato sauce. Bring sauce to a steady bubble and spit, then reduce heat to just above a simmer. During the next 20 minutes, give the sauce and pasta a stir here and there to keep things from burning/sticking.

3. When the pasta is al dente (about 20 minutes), turn off sauce heat. Add cream (perhaps an 1/8 to 1/4 cup, to your liking), stirring steadily as you add it slowly so as not to curdle it. Add salt and black pepper to sauce to taste. (Add shot or two of vodka if you like and give a good stir.)

4. Drain pasta. Mix sauce and penne in giant bowl. Serve perhaps with parmesan and basil at the table and some red wine.

We would be a better country if we took the time to make simple, scrumptious dishes like this rather than relying on so many heat-and-eat meals in freezer bags. (I make an exception for IKEA meatballs--in moderation, of course.)

tirsdag, december 26, 2006

In a Fog

Each night between midnight and 5 a.m. my left big toe cracks with each step. An insomniac discovers these things.

I wandered down for water the other night. My toe kept time the whole way and back upstairs. Back in the room I caught a view of the neighborhood through the cracked blinds.

A fog had settled in and the effect was intensified by frost forming on the windows as the damp air condensed and began to freeze. The world looked very black and white, quite noirish. For a spell I just watched a neighbor's front path light entranced by how white it looked as it spread itself on the window frost.


It's been a wonderful holiday. I'm softer now. We feasted on the 23rd, 24th, 25th and will again today on the 26th. My siblings and their significant others are leaving this morn, but an uncle, his fiancé and cousin arrive soon.

The fridge is jammed with leftovers but another couple dishes will be made. More will be unwrapped.

I'll wash the dishes, and, per usual, heated with my industry will retire to the back porch in the cold to sip some Bailey's or a bit of riesling and listen to the silence of the field.

We watched the St. Olaf Christmas in Norway (Trondheim) two nights ago and Child's Christmas in Wales last night. Ate bread pudding. Feel wonderful.

fredag, december 22, 2006

Green Slime

Friday's music: the opening sequence (about 39 seconds long) from You Can't Do That On Television. It was an 80s' kids show from Canada and the opening music and animation were guided by Barry Blair--the man who inspired Terry Gilliam's comic-style art for Monty Python. His choice of a Dixieland jazz arrangement of Rossini's William Tell Overture is brilliant.

I loved the program. It featured ridiculous sketch-comedy style skits, all of which clustered loosely around a theme. Many of them were standards: a kid at a firing squad, Barth's disgusting diner with the boogerishly clotted fly paper hanging above the grill, an...well, I guess "all-Canadian" (rather than all-American) home in which a nagging, worrisome, moralizing, frazzled mother would eventually get the best of the children, etc.

Having, perhaps, a defective sense of humor, I always liked the joke moment in which kids would appear from lockers in a row, tell a few tiresome jokes, then disappear into their lockers. Occasionally they were hauled away by someone.

When a kid said "water," water from an unseen above was dumped upon them, even if this was a skit in a desert. Often, characters tried to trick one another into saying water.

Better yet, they tried to trick one another into saying "I don't know"...at which point green slime would fall onto their head.

This fan site has gobs of info on the show, including gobs of updated info. (There were a couple fan conferences in recent years.) Adults have even posted "slimed" photos at the "Wall of Shame" page.

torsdag, december 21, 2006


Crossing to Shibuya Station, circa September 25, Tokyo. The DoCoMo Mushroom character--billboard in background--is very popular over there, according to Shagadelicbabe on Flickr. I've no reason to distrust her thoughts.

Now, I believe in having relaxed office environments - so long as people aren't jerks to those who dress up and those dressed up don't waste time dressing down those who are dressed down. But this is a bit out of hand.

And here's a lovely find from Elbee. It is, almost quite literally, holy shit. (It's an article; not a photo expose, for those who are cringing needlessly.) Put that under your tree!

Finally, the North Korean army sings karaoke. Awesome.

onsdag, december 20, 2006


Because something should occupy this space today, a man feeds a child cream cheese from a butterknife in Omaha, Nebraska.

Because I'm envious of Mips's accordian.

Because I dreamed I'd become a revolutionary in Asia. I was chased among university buildings modeled after architecture in Europe. I scaled a stone wall. I was holding a bomb, and I was confused as to whether I was bombing something or preventing a disaster. I planted it within a massive bronze sculpture that looked like an ode to undersea weeds. I would be caught.

Because there is nothing in my heart for country today, which, I suppose, was the exact feeling I've had for a long time but it made itself more known to me after watching an excellent episode ("The German Woman") of Foyle's War last night.

Because this year none of us seems to want much of anything for Christmas other than a sense of peace and (peaceful) time together; and I wonder if this is the way things are going with everyone; and if it is, if we're down to one another and holding on and building it back up from the inside rather than surrounding ourselves with ever greater gadgets, that doesn't seem so bad.

Not a bit.

tirsdag, december 19, 2006

20,000 Leagues

Continuing the baby image bloc here at The Drama: Ryder, the cutest office mascot in Florida.

The US boasts of seemingly endless expansion of individual productivity levels. The US also cautions against work hours lost due to Web surfing and e-mail. I quote Colonel Potter: Balderdash! I say: More babies and dogs in offices. You'll find people happier and more productive, even those who Web surf. They'll be more frazzled, yes; but ultimately happier and more productive. This is my theory. I leave it to the rest of you to conduct the research.

Personal trivia time.

The first 45 record I bought: "Don't You Want Me, Baby" by the Human League. I recently reacquired this via iTunes, a service for which I apparently have established no criteria for spending decisions (though I haven't purchased an iPod).

Favorite 45 to remember I once owned: "Pac-Man Fever" by Buckner and Garcia.

The sound of Pac-Man eating dots makes me think of Fozzie Bear's "Wokka! Wokka! Wokka!" And have you ever noticed the similarity between Fozzie's attire and Al Bundy's fashion on Married, With Children? I think the Muppet Show's entire goal was to make children more comfortable around people their parents distrusted: figures in pork pie hats and fat-knot ties, jazz musicians, cocaine-shredded drummers, sexually insatiable swine, and foreigners (think: Swedish Chef) with a flimsy hold on the language. And did it work? Seems so. I know very few intolerant bastards who watched the Muppet Show.

Then again, I don't keep intolerant bastards in my life, so I wouldn't actually know if they watched the Muppet Show.

I wonder what sort of culture our current tv- and groin-fearing but gun-loving culture will produce. Arguably, whatever the Japanese produce, for we've outsourced much of our child's visual stimuli to Japanese broadcasts. Having spent time in Tokyo, I'm not sure I'd qualify Americans as ready for the future.

Life of Johnny

Back in graduate school, I returned from teaching to find an envelope in my office mailbox. In it was a pamphlet from Area 51. No note was appended to this.

This was, I think, the first of many unexplained flotsam left in my mailbox. All of it was placed there by one Johnny G., who has since gone on to become a Web-surfacing librarian from whom no nook of the Internet is safe.

I won't try to explain Johnny G.'s librarian brain. And I certainly am not going to apologize for it. (I blame his parents, and maybe his brothers.) I like his tangents. He is, to say the least, a font of links, nearly all of which are, appropriately enough, unexplained.

Fortunately, general e-mail does indicate who something is from. I don't open unnamed source material. (Who among you sent me that "What's in Santa's Pants?" e-mail this morning? It arrived from santa@northpole.com or something like that. Sorry. I deleted it before the joke made itself known.)

A few recent offerings from the kid that I've adored:

Platzkart Hell
- Russia fascinates me, and this tale does nothing to diminish that interest. The writer was in hell, yes, but in something of an ick art fasion, it's the sort of train experience I think I secretly want to have...though I'd prefer not to have the food poisoning.

Cadavar Synod
- A peculiar account of a dead pope on trial...and in the courtroom. Perhaps this is the origin of America's Fifth Amendment protection?

Verizon Check
- A fabulous scan of a check. I just wish I was smart enough to do something like this. (Lollie: What did you find? This equals out to something like one-fifth of a cent, right?)

Marmaduke Explained
- Worry no more, friends. Joe Mathlete is here to explain the daily Marmaduke comic. I love dogs, but this one is my favorite.

fredag, december 15, 2006

Reset Buttons

Last night I slept decently (maybe 5 hours). Not bad. Of late I've had terrible insomnia. I haven't even been able to nap late in the afternoon. It's left me feeling as vacant and crazy as I must look.

My eyes feel warm. A bit of the blue seems to have left them. My mouth feels smaller.

These times just happen. There's nothing for us to do but wait it out and avoid making it worse by vapor-locking on it.

The mind has been on fire, yet to very little practical use. In part, it has to do with work that I'm just waiting to see work out. And in part--mostly--it has to do with trying to find a comfort zone with writing and resolving that it (as in the success of the writing) just might not happen. Ever. That's frustrating, but it's not worth carving out a heart for or letting the mind and spirit flatline.

So I had one of those pleasant, recharging moments last night during which one gets one's head in order simply through routine. I went down to the storage space--into which some idiot tried to break not long ago; Masterlock has foiled you, sucker!--and found my Christmas Carol CDs. It's Patrick Stewart giving a rather spirited reading.

The cover alone makes me laugh. Stewart's photo sits in an egg-shaped window. He's in a tux, as if caught in a stage performance, and he's got a very severe expression and an accusatory finger pointed at the lens. He looks like an angry, shiny-headed Uncle Sam at a black-tie affair.

So I played the first of the two discs while washing dishes. When I'd finished those, I cleaned the counters and scrubbed the stove. I swept. I made coffee.

Scrooge was a grump. Marley arrived and left him warning. The Ghost of Christmas Past showed up. They toured Scrooge's life: childhood, being brought back home as a teen, the wonderful Christmas party at Fezziwig's, Scrooge's broken engagement, and his attempt to put out the spirit's light. He wakes in bed, heart pounding. He goes back to sleep.

onsdag, december 13, 2006

Good Stuff

It's seems a spell (much longer than a fortnight) has passed since I last set aside enough time to write a more involved entry. I need to get back to that, but it isn't going to happen today. No time like the present, indeed, but the present holds no time.

I can confirm how well this pizza dough works. I made it last night and baked it on the stone in my oven with carmelized onion, garlic, tomato, mozarella, and cracked black pepper.

I split the dough in half before kneading so have another mound to work with today. (It has swelled up in its wrapping in the ol' ice box.) Looks like I'm going to roast a red pepper and build the next pizzapie around that.


The new "Beta Blogger" platform continues to suck. May your stock implode, Google.

tirsdag, december 12, 2006

Time to Do Cartwheels

Nothing to see here folks, nothing to see. Just move along now...


This type of story fascinates me. Thirty years? Admittedly, my interest is not only with the remarkable medical advances we've seen in transplants (such as the French woman with the FACE transplant, hello) but in the cinematic-ready question of transferring a bit of another's soul with the body parts.

Just what have those hands been up to?

mandag, december 11, 2006

2006 Airport Report

NOTE: I'm not liking the "Beta Blogger" that Google is insisting everyone switch too. The platform seems to have ripped off Microsoft Word's dysfunctional formatting elements, particularly when using cut-and-paste. Google! Knock it off.

Home, Sweet Home

If I add up the time away from Saint Paul this past year for either business or fun, I find I've been away from my apartment more than four months. Much of that travel has involved airports.

From frisking to customs, people-watching to clawing out my eyes, here's my airport year in review....

Airports Visited: 10

1. Bush International (HOU), Houston, Texas
2. Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG), Somewhere in northern Kentucky
3. Hartsfield - Jackson International (ATL), Atlanta, Georiga
4. Kastrup (CPH), Denmark, Copenhagen
5. Minneapolis – St. Paul (MSP), Bloomington, Minnesota
6. Narita (NRT), Tokyo, Japan
7. O’Hare (ORD), Chicago, Illinois
8. Palm Beach International (PBI), West Palm Beach, Florida
9. Seoul/Incheon International Airport (ICN), Incheon, Republic of Korea
10. Shanghai (SHA), Shanghai, China

Total flights: 22 or 26

Total miles: Approximately 50,000

International roundtrips: 5 - Minneapolis to/from Tokyo (twice); Tokyo to/from Seoul; Seoul to/from Shanghai; Minneapolis to/from Copenhagen

Domestic roundtrips: 6 or 7

Number of domestic roundtrips during which my baggage was not sent back to MSP on the same plane as me: 4 or 5

Number of times pulled aside and frisked: 4 - Minneapolis, Shanghai, Seoul and Tokyo…I’ve a vague memory of being frisked in Copenhagen, but I may be superimposing the painfully polite frisking I received in Amsterdam in 2004.

Most polite frisking: Seoul. They gave me special slippers to wear. They apologized four or five times.

Best flight crew: Minneapolis to Tokyo, late May. Half of the crew was based in Tokyo. The food was actually concerned with diets other than chicken or beef. Copenhagen to Atlanta, early September, was close, but the first flight to Tokyo’s airport was definitely the nicest crew.

Note: I’m being unfair, I think, to the Comair crews I flew with three or four times to/from Cinci or Atlanta. All but one of those flights was really quite nice. And they were well-piloted. I now trust small planes…sort of. It doesn’t help that a Comair jet crashed not long ago because the pilot tried taking off on an unlit, too-short runway.

Worst flight crew: Tokyo to Minneapolis. Both of these journeys were deadly obnoxious. Those attendants didn’t care, and they made sure the rest of us knew it. A woman next to me was chastised for asking for a third cup of coffee. “I’ve never heard of anyone having three cups of coffee on a flight,” the attendant said. This was a flight in mid-June. In late September, as I flew the same route, it was again a disastrous crew. This time I was the coffee problem, only it wasn’t because I asked for three cups of coffee, it was because I accepted a third cup when it was offered to me. The attendant smiled encouragingly as the first two cups were poured, but her smile fell off the map the moment I said “Sure” when she offered a third cup.

Number of Nacho Libre viewings: 2

Number of Mission Impossible 3 viewings: 2

Film most-improved by viewing it with the headset on a foreign language: Cheaper By the Dozen 2

Best airport bartender: the young woman in the C concourse of Palm Beach International. She told a guy there in January that she had a really good memory for travelers. She told him what he’d ordered the last time he’d been there. “That was maybe two months ago,” he said. She and I chatted briefly. Six or seven weeks later, I wandered up to the same bar. “Hey!” she said. “How’s Minnesota? Can I pour you a Sam Adams?” Pretty creepy.

Best airport for waiting in: Palm Beach International. The people-watching isn't notable, but the book selection is decent, it doesn't smell weird, the wi-fi is FREE, there's a wonderful stretch of places to meet, eat and drink before the concourses (Hence, you can sit down with people who you are meeting or saying goodbye to rather than just being shoved through security checkpoints or out of the baggage area), the parking out front is decently priced for an airport, the security is quick, and there's that bartender with the great memory. I guess I'd give a thumbs up to Minneapolis too. In short, I like the airports I'm in most, which is a good thing. It's a case of familiarity breeding content. I'm comfortable in them and don't mind waiting when delays crop up, and delays always crop up. Kastrup is pretty good. I adore Schipol (Amsterdam), but I didn't pass through this year. Maybe next year, but I'm pretty sure I'll fly through Iceland when I go back to Copenhagen (and sneak up to Stockholm to meet up with my folks).

Best airport for people watching: Narita (Tokyo). I actually think I enjoy Kastrup (Copenhagen) much more, but Tokyo was such a Love Boat experience (that is, exciting and new). So I’m giving the year’s award to Narita. The shopping is oddly deficient, though. You’re essentially given something like five canned shopping ideas: the Hello Kitty experience, candy / saki / digital cameras, kimonos/t-shirts, gift cards/magazines, or cheap memorabilia. I don’t know what I’m looking for, really. You can probably divide all airports this way (save for the kimono thing). But the shopping in Tokyo’s airport—the whole things-to-do scene—was a wispy version of the city’s sell of itself. Narita is quite plain inside...though I do recall seeing the Northwest "Elite" Lounge across a breezeway, and the decor and sushi looked pretty sweet.

Most surprisingly pleasant airport: Houston. I was truly angry to have to fly through Texas. I expend an unfortunate amount of energy hoping that state will leave the Union, and I was doubly angry about visiting an airport named for the Bush family. Yet, Houston’s airport was a really nice experience, even with the two-hour flight delay.

Least favorite concourse: the B Concourse at Atlanta. The ends of this concourse are characterized by seating maze that cuts through what should be an aisle between the end gates and the main aisle that runs the length of the concourse. This obstacle course is there probably to create an “organic” feel, like a street or park path plan from Frederick Law Olmsted (who designed New York's Central Park and Riverside, Illinois' slash and crescent-obsessed streetplan). But when you have 15 minutes to get on the goddamn inter-concourse train to catch your connecting flight, having to weave through rows of fat Americans eating McDonald's is not pleasant.

Most anticipated bad-customs experience: entering China (Shanghai)

Easiest customs to clear: China

Funniest airport security: Minneapolis. The woman looked at my passport and asked when the photo had been taken. “A few years ago,” I said. “You realize you’re getting younger,” she said. The woman behind me said, “You can tell me that!” to which the security official replied, “Ma’am, I’m not allowed to lie.”

lørdag, december 09, 2006

Cheers and Jeers

Cheers and Jeers, courtesy of the free wi-fi at Palm Beach International (PBI) Airport and an unexpected delay:


* To all named Peggs and Costa. Wonderful to see you all this week.
* To Stan and Laurene for hosting the Christmas party
* To Lollie who drove me from Jupiter (a real city, no less) to the airport in West Palm this morning
* To the juvenile effects of alcohol (See jeers note regarding the Jupiter police)
* To Lyn's angry stories about her neighbors
* To a vomiting cat at Ray and Lara's. Poor kitty.


* To a vomiting cat at Ray and Lara's. Poor Lollie, having to mop up that warm mess. Poor Ray, having to so frequently step in it.
* To the Jupiter police for breaking up the boys' attempt to disassemble a swingset and reassemble it over a neighbor's car.
* To Lyn and Ian's bad neighbor
* To United for Ted (an airline) for refusing to post an estimated time of departure to Chicago!! Grrr. I can handle delays, but if you won't even guess--c'mon, dudes. Give us something. Something!
* To the zombie who cut my head off with a chainsaw in Resident Evil 4 the other night.

fredag, december 08, 2006


The least popular story in India...but perhaps the most popular story in Pakistan.

The world as a high school.


It's Friday. I've survived my days in Florida. Slightly cool (for here) weather and a couple storms have given me some of the comforts of a more northern home.

Took a ride in a 1979 MG convertible last night. (Thanks, Ian!) And then was on the receiving end of one kickass pizza. (Thanks, Lollie!)

Holiday party with strangers this eve. I think I'm going to make it something of a scavenger hunt. For example, I would put foreign-bought earrings on the list of things to discover. (Sorry, middleman purchases don't count, China. I'm talking about the wearer having acquired them outside the US.)

Back in the halcyon days of college when I was challenged by papers, I would choose a word, such as analgesic, and find a way to incorporate it into a paper about a book of short stories or the parliamentary system in Sweden. I found it to be the absolute best method of finding a way into a paper.

Then, when I hit a lull in inspiration, I'd transition to stage two: writing the paper in the cadence of someone like Burt Wolf or an NPR announcer.

I won't adopt other cadences tonight, but I will use the word/item-based approach by which to prize information.

Foreign earrings, pulled muscles, cell phone photos, one's preferred karaoke songs, etc.

torsdag, december 07, 2006

Photo Op

I don't know if the photos will remain with the article. Sometimes the BBC posts hideous pics then changes them out later in the day. But what is with this Clooney - Grisham diptych?

The article. Not interesting, really, it's just the photo that grabs me. Clooney looks like a late-40s version of the mentally challenged boy DiCaprio plays in Gilbert Grape and Grisham looks like a Whig presidential portrait.

onsdag, december 06, 2006

Chuck a Lefty

In southern Illinois, we played video trivia for free at the Cellar. Those early days of NTN were sponsored by Foster's Lager, the Australian "oil can" beer. Between rounds in the game, Australian word trivia would pop up. For example, if someone says you're crazy: "You must be troppo!"

As I recall, turning left was listed as "chucking a leftie."

(Confession: The entire Australian lexicon in my head is narrated by Paul Hogan--aka Crocodile Dundee.)

The BBC posted an article yesterday about southpaws having a quicker thought ability. And, true enough, it's taken this slow-witted northpaw more than a day to react.

- Homer

tirsdag, december 05, 2006


Well, I made it to West Palm Beach, and in all that travel managed to avoid the cocaine-fueled right hook of Tawny Kitaen. Nice.

(Thanks, mC, for finding that in the recent celebrity police blotter!)

Are you aware of how boring O'Hare is if you aren't sitting in a crowded bar? That was some of the least valuable people-watching time I've ever had in an airport. Still, I did remember to do some celebrity spotting.

(Note: I accept very vague resemblance. Actual celebrities may be thousands of miles away.)

Who did I see?

A late 20s, 5-foot-tall Emmanuelle Béart. Cute as a button in a super cute peacoat. [NOTE: I've corrected this. Earlier I wrote "Emmanuelle Seigner," but, no, wrong.]

Andy Richter, only the Eastern European version with the pushbroom mustache. Arguably, that's 25 percent of the men in Chicago.

Timothy Busfield, only with a seeringly-orange, professorial yet zen-like goatee. That goatee had a fascinating corkscrew whimsy on the chin.

Crap. I can't recall the fourth one I really liked. Hrumph.

mandag, december 04, 2006

Take 2

Didn't make it to West Palm Beach yesterday as planned. O'Hare was still down to one runway--not exactly an ideal situation for the nation's busiest commuter airport--on the tail of snow and, I think, a cargo plane sliding off a runway into a ditch. (Nice one, FedEx.)

So my flight checked in on-time. I even splurged and paid $40 to upgrade to a window seat that promised FIVE MORE INCHES OF ROOM!! You should have seen the graphic in support of this sales pitch. Five inches looked like a football field. But when you're a 135 pounds and still don't fit the seats on these airplanes, that's not a nice situation.

How can the fattest nation have such tiny airline seats? One of two things needs to happen in order for this to be corrected.

Scenario A - We assign airline seating based upon taxable income. Those with the highest incomes get the worst seats. (Middle seats, economy class. NO UPGRADES for CEOs or sports stars!)

Scenario B - No one should be allowed to graduate high school and college without passing in their final semester a personal financial management course and a course geared towards basic public interaction and spatial relations. This would apply to, say, the design of airline seating, how to park a car, line etiquette, etc.

I'm no Maoist, but many of us deserve a good punch in the face for our public behavior, especially at the holidays (Oh, the love!). I keep thinking of George Costanza's protest at New York's indifference: "We're living in a society here!"

Anyhow: My flight checked in on time, but was listed as delayed at the gate. Finally, they announced the 3:30 departure wouldn't happen until 5:00, which made it impossible, of course, to make a 5:35 connection in Chicago. So they offered to send me to Miami at midnight. Mmm, no. Lauderdale at midnight on another airline? but which would not actually guarantee you a seat? Mmm, no. How 'bout we try this again tomorrow?

Deal. So here I go again, as White Snake sang. (Where's my Tawny Kitaen!? Whither the Witchboard director's cut? Is she still kicking her husband's butt?)

1:30 to Chicago. 5:30 to West Palm. We think.

søndag, december 03, 2006

The Pawns of Dogtown

A dog bit me this morning. A Jack Russell Terrier (think Eddie on Frasier or Jack from Tales of the Gold Monkey). He was freaking out outside of the coffee shop, 7:30 a.m., in the grey dawn light. It was 10 degrees. On the weather they said "it feels like -3!", which is, yes, a weird point of pride for us.

It did feel like that, but -3 is not as bad, I think, as a wet 8 or 12 degrees, which hurts. Today's air temp is harsh, certainly capable of making the early morning eyes water, but it isn't painful.

Nor was the dog bite. You could see it about to happen. Whereas friendly dogs wag tails and step toward you, this little bastard sat back, ready to pounce, as I crossed the street in my black stocking hat, unbuttoned (so billowing) winter coat, and black gloves. My face was half-obscured by a scarf.

I look at the dog and pass too close to the giant, empty flower pot he's guarding. He lets loose a furious tirade and lunges, snapping once at my knee through my jeans.

Ah, but he was a cute dog, so it was a cute bite.


Off to Florida this afternoon for a work week. Much revenue to generate.

fredag, december 01, 2006

You, Me, Us


Happy birthday to Mips! I'll steal a bit from the Betsy, for she's really quite worth the theft: You're the Sweetest Pea.


I have nothing to say about myself today. Wait. That's wrong. I can say that Francis Ford Coppolla and Mary Gaitskill are on my shitlist. Not even an honourable mention? Grrrr. That better not be a first-person story that won.


It's World AIDS Day, friends. Please take a moment to reflect on how we've arrived at this state, how we can improve things for those currently suffering and at risk, and how we can protect one another going forward.
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