Wednesday, January 26, 2011

We don't rent pigs.

Things Which Make for a Good Bar

--Bag/coat hooks under the bar. I will not linger if I gotta fucking stand there with all my shit over my arm, or sit on my coat on the barstool, or whatever, while I’m tryna drink.

--A foot rail under the bar and under all high tables. It’s a lot less fun than you might think to sit there with your feet dangling all night like some neglected little kid at his rich grandparents' dinner party.

--Configurable barstools. No good having them bolted to the floor at equal intervals or so big and heavy and furniture-y that you can’t move them around to accommodate groups of various sizes and makeups.

--A specialty. Every bar ought to have something it does that is interesting or different or local or whatever, in addition to the basics.

--Nooks. Ever been in one of those joints that’s just, like, one big room, like a Chinese buffet restaurant at a mall? Depressing. No sense of intrigue.

--Dimness. See above. I came to booze it up and talk too loud – don’t make me do it in a setting that’s lit like my fucking office.

--Music. Live, juke, bartender’s iPod broadcasting from the dock back of the bar – doesn’t matter, as long as some human picked it out and it’s playing at the right volume to suit the atmosphere.

--Proper bathrooms. Many of you who’ve been in agreeance (as the great philosopher and wordsmith Kid Rock once said) up til now will balk at this one – but listen: I just mean the ladies’ room at least has to be:

A) Possessed of more than one stall. See above, re: DRINKING.

B) Operational. Each toilet unit has to have a seat, and a working flush mechanism.

C) On the premises (yes, I’ve been to bars that make you exit the building to find the toilet).

D) The approximate cleanliness level of the bar area itself – it’s all relative, and what wouldn’t make me blink at a dive bar will put me completely off my feed in a place that features a lot of fritzy little ‘tini drinks on a hardbacked menu, you dig?

A Thing Which Makes Me Laugh (an occasional series)

Literal New Yorker cartoons. [hat tip: Mr. Gleemonex]
(Note: I do not generally laugh at actual New Yorker cartoons, though as a twelve-year subscriber to the mag, I have read pretty much every one they’ve run in that time … it’s a compulsion. Tractor-beam action.)

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Tuesday, January 18, 2011

"You negotiated your way from a C to an A? I'm so proud of you, honey!"

I ever tell y'all about the time my dad tried to make me and my sister enter a beauty pageant?

Oh yeah, it was a good 'un. I was in college at the time -- a junior or so -- and my sister a high school senior (I think) and it was summer, all of us sitting around doing nothing in the hottest part of the day in our un-air-conditioned house, and my dad's like, "So hey, the Reunion Queen contest is calling for entries -- you both oughtta enter. You win that, you get [small monetary prize -- like a hundred bucks or something], plus the title, and then you can enter [feeder pageant for Miss Texas]."

Dead serious, he says this.

Me and my sister crack the FUCK up. We're like, Yeaaaaah, no, mkay, ha ha, good one dad.

But he was in a Mood, I guess, so he kind of hunkered down on that position and started really bulldogging us both. I could not fucking believe it -- my sister, I guess, it made a tiny little itsy bit of sense, because she was a cheerleader all through middle, junior, and high school, and beautiful with long blonde pageant hair, and could make a nice living off her singing voice if ever she chose to -- but she had zero inclination for the Pageant Lifestyle, and as for me, what was I gonna do? Stand up there, puffy from all the herbal jazz refreshment (and resultant munchies) and oat sodas I was partial to at the time, wearing all black, and ... what? Spell stuff? Blather for ten minutes about divestment from South Africa? Write a 25-page paper on an arcane topic in record time, using one actual source for every three invented ones, guaranteed to get at least an A- thanks to my flair for extemporaneous bullshit?

Fucking ridiculous.

He's all "But you could win!" And we're all "THAT'S THE POINT, GOD, DAD!"

And it went on and on and we're getting increasingly desperate and yada yada yada it ends up with me and my mom having the worst fight of our mutual lives (one I'm not sure we're quite over, yet) so thanks for that, DAD, and I'm like "You don't get it -- I don't want to be OBJECTIFIED BY THE MALE GAZE!"

Which at the time I hollered, near tears, with utter passion, and which now makes me laugh like a lunatic in my cube 2,000 miles and sixteen years away, but also is TRUE, GODDAMMIT.

Btw, HHL, a smart man, had loooong ago left the room by that point. Would that I had had such sense ...

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Monday, January 17, 2011

What if the moon were made of green cheese? Wouldja eat it THEN?


Pretty much the worst word ever. I see the word gobble, I don't ever fucking want to eat again. And y'all, I LOVE to eat, but this word makes me want to join like ten pro-ana forums and get cracking on the whole cessation-of-food-consumption thing in earnest. So the power of this word is immense. Gobble. Yecccch.

I am aware of a terrible horrible disgustingly named restaurant called "Squat n' Gobble" or something very close to that -- I don't care if it's manned by eight past Iron Chefs under the leadership of Thomas Keller with motherfucking Anthony Bourdain as busboy, I'm not eating there. I won't do it.

The NYT yesterday had an article about South L.A. trying to close the door to more fast food restaurants, and some idiot copyeditor (do they even bother with those anymore?) allowed the writer to talk about this group of teenagers stopping by a Carl's Jr. on the way home from school to "gobble" a bunch of Western Bacon Chees, which nearly made me vomit.

It's such a gaggily evocative word, gobble. Siiiickening.

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Tuesday, January 11, 2011

"Oh, didja hear that? He was GETTIN there. Psssh. Son, you wouldn't know what to do with it if you HAD gotten there, so don't worry about it."

What's Impeding the Bloggage Lately? A Partial List

--The immense, fantastic suckitude of my job. When every day starts with that sick dready third-day-of-seventh grade feeling, plus a heapin' helpin' of poison loathing, and there's so much work to do that for the third night in a week you're up past midnight plugging away, and you still make what you made three years ago, plus you're bossed by aggressive halfwits, and twenty-five-year-olds are getting promoted over you -- you know it blows!

--Under the Dome. GodDAMN, Stephen King. I WISH I KNEW HOW TO QUIT YOU. But I can't put this (five-pound) thing down, dammit. I'm sick ... and I never want to get well!

--Various and sundry Grownup Life Tasks (getting prequalified for a mortgage, booking travel to HHL's wedding, arranging family social shit, gettin us all to the dentist, payin bills, what have you)

--Running! I never knew I could love it, but reader, I do. Longer and longer distances, higher and higher runner's highs ...

--An inability to handle horrifying shit in the news (for days I've been trying, and failing, to come up with something to say about the murder spree that numbnuts crazy fuckwad went on in Arizona -- I got nothing but outrage and sadness).

--The daily irritation of seeing those Natalie Portman - Ashton Kutcher movie posters in the festering pit that is BART. Now, y'all know I love me some Natalie, and Kutcher, for all his retarday, will always hold a special little place in my heart for my beloved Dude, Where's My Car?, but come ON. It's the tagline that really bothers me: "Can SEX FRIENDS stay BEST FRIENDS?" Because: What? "Sex friends"? Has anyone -- in the history of ever -- used that phrase? I get what you're going for, but THAT IS NOT A THING.

--Unproductive yet awesome shit I find on the Internets (a series of tubes). These two are via my personal Kenny Powers of Internet Awesome, Mimi Smartypants: First, Sheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeit. Second: The hills are alive ...

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Thursday, January 06, 2011

I'll hit the ceiling / or else I'll tear up this town

Internets -- am I wrong in believing that my iPhone goddamn well ought to auto-complete "Loggins"? I mean, if I'm referring to the the man, the myth, the legend, I should not have to get further than "Logg" for it to automatically render the Name of the Anointed [Possibly Some Sort of Religio-Crazy These Days But I'm Too Lazy Even to Google This Vague Unsubstantiated Impression I Picked Up Somewhere] One.

I just. I feel pretty strongly about this.

Loggins. Fuck yeah.

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