Wednesday, January 31, 2007

154. Does This Look Leprous?

So yesterday, I was playing basketball with friends, playing defense, minding my own business when my teeth came out of nowhere and attacked my tongue. It was like hard-calcium-deposit-on-strongest-muscle-in-the-body-pound-for-pound violence. The Gaza strip thought my teeth were a little too over-the-top as they went OJ on my tongue. My tongue has never been so humiliated.

It all happened when the opponent decided to throw a fake. Now because I’m a chubby kid, I don’t go for fakes anymore. I’m not quick enough anymore to recover if it’s only a fake and I’m too lazy to take the chance of actually moving. Anyway, said fake was designed to make me move right so the ball-handler could pass by on the left for an easy basket. Since I didn’t bite on the fake, the opponent decided I should try to take a bite out of his shoulder which he promptly jammed up under my chin.

What’d my chin ever do to his shoulder? Pretty rude I say.

I won’t go into any other details because of my more sensitive readers who cringed at my lost toenail story, but let’s say I could have bitten my tongue right off if I hadn’t gotten so much of it caught between my Chiclets. Unfortunately, because I bit on so much of it, now it’s sore all over (and leprous) and I have to speak like Rocky to protect my mouth from pain—not good for my customers. I also have to mention (without getting too graphic) that my teeth hurt too because of the blow they took from my tongue. I haven’t had facial trauma like that since I was a freshman in college and I got my nose broken.

Stupid went to college you ask? No. Being a freshman is not the same as ‘going to college.’

Monday, January 29, 2007

153 ...And They Were Lentils Too.

A lentil met a lentil
And they were lentils two (2).
Two (2) lentils met two (2) lentils
And they were lentils too.
Four (4) lentils met

(The rest of the bag of lentils
Four (4) quarts water
Three (3) chicken bouillon cubes
The hambone from the Christmas ham
Four (4) chorizo** sausages
One (1) can stewed tomatoes
One (1) can tomato Paste
Three (3) medium potatoes--diced
Carrots to taste (three to five (3-5) large carrots)
Chervil to taste (two (2) tsp.)
Teaspoon of salt
Pepper to taste
One (1) Tbsp parsley flakes
Celery seed to taste (one (1) tsp.)
Tarragon to taste (one (1) tsp.)

Pressure cook the lentils and salt and a quart and a half (1 ½ qt) of water. Throw everything else in a six-(6)-quart pot and simmer until the potatoes and carrots are done. Remove hambone and chorizos from the pot. Add the lentils (undrained). Remove the ham from the bone and return to the stew (the ham, not the bone). Cut the chorizos into desired-sized pieces and return to the stew. Simmer for another hour on very, very low heat. Serves 12-15.)

And they were lentil stew.

And if you’re planning on providing food for your Superbowl party this weekend or if you have a potluck, volunteer for the buffalo wings; here’s how to make them:

Buy the wings (or tenders, or drumettes) raw and unseasoned. Ten (10) lbs. should be just enough for two cookie sheets full of wings.

Wash the wings with lime juice and salt water (if you don’t prefer lime, at least wash them; it’s always a good idea to wash chicken.) Rinse the wings in cold water. In a separate container, mix half (½) cup olive oil, half (½) cup lime juice, parsley flakes (about 1 ½ tbsp), two (2) medium cloves minced (or crushed in a garlic press). Add the oil/juice to the chicken and mix well. Marinate overnight. Bake at 425 until brown and crispy. Ten (10) lbs takes about an hour and ten (10) minutes. Make sure you rotate the cookie sheets and rearrange them after cooking for a half (½) hour.

And for the sauce:

A bottle of Franks® Red Hot sauce to a cube of butter. Simmer until mixed.

If you want HOT hot sauce use Tabasco® instead of Franks®.

If you want it fiery, add cayenne pepper to the Tabasco® blend and simmer a little longer...

(photos to follow)

**Be sure to use Spanish style chorizo. You can get good mexican chorizo in most mexican food stores, but the flavor is dramatically different. In Utah, Colosimo's is the only brand that is authentic spanish. The difference between the two (2) is dramatic--the recipe looks the same, but they don't taste the same. Vinegar, peppers, pork can be very varied in style and quality. Mexican Chorizo is great for mexican omelettes, burritos and other foods, but not lentils. (Not Spanish style lentils anyway.)

Thursday, January 25, 2007

152. When Worlds Collide.

Yesterday, I was treated to one of the awkward social encounters of the century. Luckily I was not one of the parties involved, so I got to just watch the events unfold.

It all happened in the sporting complex at the local college where many, many people were using the indoor facilities to gain some much needed exercise. (The ‘much needed’ was my own addition.) I, of course, was not exercising, because I’m trying to maintain my girthish figure, but many other people were either walking or jogging or otherwise engaging the building in gravitational punishment.

Since it was free-play time, I assumed no one really belonged there, just as I assumed no one was prohibited from being there. I was standing in the open area in the middle of the track when some Byll and Svarnik* look-a-likes entered the free play area carrying plastic cases. I also noticed some hotties congregating across the way talking about gum and hair extensions.

It turns out the hotties were a legitimate team of cheerleaders from said college gathering for practice and the Byll and Svarnik look-a-likes were the sword fighting club gathering for what I assume is a weekly gathering of Guinevere-loving dreamers. There’s only one problem with dreaming about Guinevere: she doesn’t exist—not for the sword fighters’ club anyway.

So, a bunch of sword fighters had gathered and a bunch of cheerleaders had gathered. I envisioned the sword fighters running headlong into the crowd of cheerleaders, chopping heads and screaming battle cries in the Black Speech (language of Mordor) and Ye Olde Englishe. What I got was not as exciting, but more funny.

The Cheerleaders all went for a warm-up jog and then came back with a huge, rolled up gymnastics mat which they promptly began unrolling in the middle of the open area. Clearly not thinking about the sword club (or anything for that matter), they just went in like a bunch of space hogs. Then I looked at the wannabe swordsmen who were visibly shaken as they noticed their swordplay area shrinking. I could also see the worry start to build as the sword guys realized they were actually going to have to approach the women AND talk to them if they wanted to get enough space to…hmmm…do whatever the sword club does.

So the sword fighters had a little huddle and they chose one person to approach the cheerleaders and ask them to move the mat to the side and create enough space for all. I was not near enough to hear the conversation, but I could tell by the looks on their faces what was said. I bring you my interpretation of the conversation.

“Hi, excuse me.”

[chews gum]

[clears throat] “Excuse me.”

“Hi?”

“Hi. I was just wondering if you and your friends could move over there a bit so we can…wow! You are small. I bet I could fit two (2) of you in my belly.”

“Hi? No, we don’t have bellies. We work out.” [chews gum]

“Anyway, can you move over a few paces m’lady?”

“We can move in unison! Moving is fun! Ready! Okay! Five (5) six (6) seven (7) eight (8)…”

“Uh, thanks.”

“I like gum.”

Then the sword guy went over to the other sword fighters and pert-near collapsed. The other sword fighters were incapacitated and confused by the collapse of their leader, but soon everyone in the room was practicing swordfightery and cheerery. Happiness ensued. Later in the chat room, the message appeared:

Medieval Knievel: i almost dated a cheerleader i turned her down because she didnt have red hair

*Byll and Svarnik appear in anti-smoking television ads dressed in tunics and long boots. They are not very socially aware, but they don’t smoke and that’s what’s important. I’d bet $500 Bill and Svarnik’s characters have posters of Darth Vader in their bedrooms.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

151. iCool

And I really mean it this time. i (am) Cool.

Inventors are very forward thinking and develop new technologies at rates that make credit card interest rates embarrassed.

Early adopters grab new technologies in their infancy and ride the wave that is 'cool' while all their other friends are jealous enough to covet.

Regular folk buy new products when they become affordable enough to own, but not affordable enough to show off.

Laggers wait until it's impossible to avoid purchasing the new technology, such as vulcanized rubber and the cotton gin.

I am a lagger. I refuse to buy anything unless it is absolutely necessary for living. If 'the man' was going to make us pay for air, I would hold my breath for at least twenty (20) seconds before giving in. I would also pause every third breath (breath/3) to save on air costs. I would also boycott any air supplier who insists on having a company name like Aero Supply, Just Aire and Air Limited.

So being a lagger, I have recently purchased an iPod after carefully saving money and begging my wife Limpy for the right. And like buying air, it has become impossible for me to live without an iPod and so I had to get the biggest one. Unlike early adopters though, I have not had to purchase various models every time the latest has become available. I have also paid a relatively low price for a super-sized product that has a gigantic hard drive and is time tested and proven to launch one into coolness circles almost immediately. It's kind of like the forbidden city--and now I have the key.

In short, I have an iPod.

Neener.

(Now if only I owned any music...)

Thursday, January 11, 2007

150. Death and Taxes

There are two(2) absolutes:

  • Death
  • Taxes
  • The Office will be HI-larious every week
    • [quote michael] "Fool me once: strike one. Fool me twice...strike three."
    • "Hi." "Hi." "Hi." "Hi."
    • [quote the robot] "You are hot!"
  • Blog Patrol has been shorting me on the visits since August, 2004. (see my 'counters' section)
  • Driving in LA is never as bad as they tell you...well, except for when you really, really need to get somewhere and you left the domicile just a few minutes late because of a really huge zit that would have distracted the potential client.
  • Animals in sunglasses are funny.
  • 24 (Twenty Four) has the longest lasting cell phone batteries.
  • Doughnut holes make me gassy.
  • Quemby is a cruel name to give a child. (Don't even try to argue, you will lose.)
  • Ideas are only good if you write them down. (Excuse me while I go write down my idea about recycling moon boots as centerpieces.)
  • The Colts will never win a Superbowl unless I decide not to be a fan anymore.
  • My car Space Lord may not recover from her escapades with a lamp post.
  • Hulk will always grace my top seventeen (17) movies.
  • Child stars always grow up normal.
  • The BCS is bull pucky.
  • If you name your kid Quemby I will call DCFS and then make fun of you.
  • Leaving your heart in San Fransisco is a horrible idea; you can get twice as much in other countries.
  • Crying lives here.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

149. Washing Machines: The Big Lie.

Many of you may think washing machines clean your clothes and conveniently flush the extracted dirt and lint down into the sewer. You couldn’t be more wrong.

This week our washing machine went on the fritz (not Fritz from the Swiss Family Robinson—it’s just an expression; roll with it.) The culprit of our washing woes was due to a broken lid switch—the most crucial part of the washing machine. Let me explain the gravity of the broken lid switch:

Without a lid switch, the agitator is unagitatable.
Without a lid switch, you get no calypso action.
Without a lid switch, the washer just quits and goes off to cry alone in the back of the closet—behind the clothes I mean.

So I, being the strong minded do-it-yourself fixer-upper I am, decided I could fix the washing machine myself with only a few tools and a little bit of common sense. That’s when I found it: the accumulated dirt and lint living scared within the washing machine waiting for a chance to rear up and maim someone.

See, I took the washer apart to get to the switch, and found out all the dirt it’s been extracting from the clothes was not going down the drain, but was being stored in the netherworkings of the washer. Not only was the washer not transporting waste out of my home, the washer was storing it for a future act of revenge or perhaps blackmail for when my book goes multiplatinum.

Anyway, I cleaned the washing machine inside and out; I replaced the switch (pictured), put the machine back together and washed a test batch of knits and delicates just to make sure everything was in working condition. Everything was perfect.

So what happened to the dirty lintbeast, you ask? I’m keeping it in a box for a future act of blackmail against a certain few of you.

Monday, January 08, 2007

148. Tube Socks are Classy

Are you tired of those other socks, the kind that make your feet frown?
Are you upset that all your socks seem to have turned on you?
Are you tired of all those brands of socks that pull guns on your grandma and tell her they will cut her up real bad?

Well you’re not the only one.

I don’t know about you, but when I put on a brand new pair of socks, I want them fresh as a dewy Yellowstone morning and warm as a California vacation. I want them whiter than the virgin snows of Vermont and softer than the cotton from the fluffy fields of the American south. That’s why I buy Hanes® brand tube socks—the only socks that don’t suck.

I mean, what’s the use of buying new tube socks if they don’t caress the toes and heel bones in the supple warmth only the freshest socks could provide. That’s why Hanes® brand tube socks are the only socks that come in a re-sealable bag. Only Hanes’s® proprietary Sock Re-seal Self Re-sealer Freshness Seal Re-sealer Seal® can keep your socks as fresh as the first day they were manufactured. Let’s step over to the lab and see what the unique Sock Re-seal Self Re-sealer Freshness Seal Re-sealer Seal® re-sealable bag can do for you.

As you can see, socks packaged in the Hanes® Sock Re-seal Self Re-sealer Freshness Seal Re-sealer Seal® re-sealable bag are one hundred fifty percent (150%) more fluffier than those other brands—and an astonishing fifty percent (50%) more fluffier than Hanes’s® non-Sock Re-seal Self Re-sealer Freshness Seal Re-sealer Seal® packaged socks.

Listen to these actual customers

“When I tried those other tube socks, I felt like I was being held hostage by the footwear and the thug-like non-comfortable sock surface so typical of those other brands”
-Beyoncé

“The freshness of Hanes® tube socks are incredible; I feel like my feet have been given the youth and vitality I lost during the ‘70’s.”
-Donald Trump P.S. I hate Rosie.

My toenails don’t even fall off when I wear Hanes® tube socks. With those other socks, I heard voices telling me how to fashion a shiv out of a toothbrush and some rolled up newspaper.”
-stupidramblings

“Don’t even worry about those hater brands. Hanes® tube socks keep my skin silky smooth, my face young and vital looking, and my vision just keeps improving. Thanks Hanes®.”
-Halle Berry

So get your Hanes® brand tube socks today! Remember, they’re the only socks with the proprietary Sock Re-seal Self Re-sealer Freshness Seal Re-sealer Seal® built right in to the packaging! You’ll never buy another pair of socks, or my name isn’t Michael Jordan. Buy today and we’ll throw in this complimentary pair of red pumps to go with your tube socks.

Order yours today.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

147. Unclean! Unclean!

Doctor: So what exactly is the problem?
Us: Well, he’s crying.
Doctor: Um…babies cry sometimes…
Us: Not our baby. He’s an angel. He’s been sleeping through the night since two months and he
rarely cries except if you drop sand in his eyes.
Doctor: Well, babies change and grow and when they reach a certain age, they learn they have appetites and they learn not to just be content with current circumstances.
Us: Our baby doesn’t change. He’s cherubic.
Doctor: Has he grown at all since his birth five (5) months ago?
Us: [confused] I don’t see where you’re going with this.
Doctor: Growing hurts. How much taller is he than when he was born?
Us: Well…[still confused], he’s grown seven (7) inches. He’s going to be a quarterback and throw for two thousand (2000) yards.
Doctor: [confused] I don’t see where you’re going with this.
Us: Can’t you see he’s got potential?
Doctor: For what?
Us: Football.
Doctor: [awkward pause] Anyway, growing hurts. If you grew seven (7) inches in the next five (5) months, you’d hurt a little too.
Us: Oh. Well, it doesn’t seem like he’s in pain, it seems more like he’s panicked or like he just witnessed O’Donnell vs. Trump 2006.
Doctor: Oh, that. Why didn’t you say so?
Us: We did; we told you he was crying.
Doctor: Well, let’s check him out.
Us: It’s about time.
Doctor: [tries to turn the first mate into a circus worker] Seems like all his joints work properly. Putting weight on his belly doesn’t seem to hurt him.
Us: Excuse me, is “belly” a medical term?
Doctor: Yes, it’s Latin for “gut.”
Us: I always wondered where the term came from.
Doctor: Germany.
Us: Huh.
Doctor: His ears look normal.
Us: Inside or out?
Doctor: Both.
Us: Can I get a woot woot?
Doctor: Woot woot?
Us: Does he have a torn ACL?
Doctor: What?
Us: A boo boo on his knee.
Doctor: No, he seems perfectly normal to me.
Us: Then why was he crying?
Doctor: Because he’s a baby.
Us: You got that right.
Doctor: Whatever.
Us: Does this rash look normal? [exposes shoulder]
Doctor: [hurls] That’s leprosy. Try to mix in a shower and some hygiene once in a while.
Us: You’re not the boss of us.
Doctor: That’ll be two hundred fifty dollars ($250).
Us: Why.
Doctor: Malpractice insurance.
Us: Oh no. No no no no NO NO NO. You are not a doctor, you’re a physicians assistant. That’s gotta be less expensive.
Doctor: More malpractice insurance.
Us: Oh. Can’t you give us a break?
Doctor: See all those secretaries wearing scrubs? They’re not going to eat tonight unless you pay me.
Us: Oh. Okay. Why do secretaries wear scrubs?
Doctor: I don’t know. Dismissed.
Us: Okay. Bye then.
Doctor: Bye.
Us: Wanna meet at Sizzler later?
Doctor: No.
Us: Red Lobster?
Doctor: Yeah. Yeah, Red Lobster sounds good.
Us: [rings bell] Unclean! Unclean! [wanders off into the distance]

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

146. No Blood for Energon!

For those of you who plan on missing TRANSFORMERS this next July, let me be the first to tell you you are a moron. I mean, Hello! Decepticons? Autobots? Does none of this stir your inner eight-(8)-year-old? Why would you miss what’s sure to be the blockbuster hit of the summer? This is going to be the next big thing in Sci-Fi since Eragon and The Hulk.

Let me try to change your mind:

[cue music] Transformers: More than meets the eye.
Transformers: Robots in disguise.
Autobots wage their battle to destroy the evil forces of the Decepticons.

If that doesn’t do it, let’s try my new tactic: persuasion by plot summary.

The movie will start out with a look back at NASA’s Mars rover. Why? Because the Mars rover was the first real-world (well, not our world) Transformer to see specific use in scientific missions. So, the Mars rover landed safely on Mars only to have been destroyed by…I don’t know what--the teaser doesn’t show it. What I do know is that the teaser says that it was the only warning we would ever have received. Then they display the Autobots logo.

Well, when the Decepticons learn there is sentient life on other planets, they have but one choice--go to said planet and steal all the Energon cubes. Besides the stupid dictator Autobots have control of the Mars House and Mars Senate and they have a bungling president (Megabush Electricybertron, played by Patrick Warburton). It’s tough for an honest Decepticon to get anything done with that pile-o-crap Megabush Electricybertron in the Oval Volcano.

So they invade earth. Little do they know the sentient life forms on planet Earth have no energon to speak of. They don’t have any robot sense either for that matter. Decepticons that they are, they find they are powerless to cut through the red tape involved in Earth’s energy exploration application process, but they decide to patiently importune country governments for rights to explore for Energon.

Unfortunately, Energon is made unavailable to Decepticons despite expert predictions of vast stores of it underneath Alaska. (Side note: Alaska seems to have been blessed with an inordinate amount of unreachable valuables: gold, oil, Energon, heat. The list goes on and on.) Dejected, the Decepticons decide to leave planet Earth with plans to secretly come back later if nothing else works out.

Just then the Autobots show up and war is waged on planet Earth between two enemy alien factions. People are reminded quickly of the Rosie O’Donnell/Donald Trump spat of late ’06. The Alien robots destroy Earth in a ballet-beautiful dance of robot-war destruction. Earth’s citizens are heard gasping in horror and some lucky few (see: stupidramblings, Penny Hardaway, Lance Bass) are seen curled up in the fetal position sucking their thumbs. Then all the robots are destroyed by organics and the movie ends. But during the credits, one of the dead robots shows signs of life but hasn’t enough Energon left to power up and escape. Fortunately, having an undead robot leaves room for a sequel--pending box-office success.

I predict the sequel doesn’t happen. “No blood for Energon!” I say.

145. "I Don't Believe in You"

Over the Hedge (2006 Bruce Willis, Gary Shandling, Steve Carell)

(Ultra short review:) This movie was as mediocre as its predecessor, New York Minute.

(Thoughtful Review:) I can’t help thinking there’s nothing real positive about this movie. It was just OK all the way around. The short in the special features was the highlight of the movie. When Steve Carell’s character ** SPOILER ALERT** denies the existence of a boomerang by saying “I don’t believe in you” even though the boomerang is taunting him, I spit Hawaiian Punch all over the first mate.

(Standard rating:) Eight (8) out of seventeen (17) stars
(Non-standard rating:) This movie is good enough if someone lends it to you. In other words, don't pay to see this one.

Ice Age 2: The Meltdown (2006 Ray Romano, John Leguizamo, Dennis Leary)

(Ultra short review:) They made a sequel? Yes, they did. And it’s like Ashley Simpson’s nose job; it’s better, but you still want to boo it.

(Thoughtful Review:) I liked the sequel to Ice Age (2002). In fact I liked it more than the original. And that’s one to grow on.

(Standard rating:) Ten (10) stars out of seventeen (17)
(Non-standard rating:) It’s worth owning, but only if you still own the original.