Friday, July 30, 2010

The Things I Learn

I learned something new from my daughters today. Well, from my younger daughter. Apparently when someone uses two fingers to put little rabbit ears behind your head, it means, "I want to take you home and sex you." Hm. Apparently she heard this from someone. Older daughter is skeptical.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Monday, July 26, 2010


I really am a simpleton at heart. Poor Kimberly sometimes asks me what I'm thinking, and I have to level with her and admit I've been pondering gnat droppings or tree leaves or some other such piffle. Recently I've been contemplating rainbows. Specifically, why were we taught to memorize indigo as part of the spectrum? It doesn't fit the pattern. If you count only the six, ROY G BV, there's a lovely pattern that loops back around to form a circle, since blue and red make violet. But indigo--whose idea was that, I wonder.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


I just got off the phone with a friend from Maine. He mentioned lobster boats in the bay, and now I want lobster. Both my parents grew up in New Hampshire, so we spent many a vacation there near the coast. Lobster. Man, it was good. We'd eat them in restaurants, run-down roadside shacks with paper-covered tables, or at our grandparents' house. Boiled lobster, baked lobster tail, lobster salad sandwiches. I want lobster.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Roof Update

After removing a satellite nest of carpenter ants from an upper corner of the house and spraying the beBuddha out of it before replacing the rotten wood with help of FriendTony, I've started gathering new-roof quotes because my attempts to shove in drip-edge along the side of the roof failed due to brittle shingles.

While Pickard Roofing's quote today of $5,500 displeased me greatly, the news was tempered by the estimator-guy's honest assessment that we really won't need a roof replacement for another three to five years.

I celebrate.

With Schlitz.


Interesting dance troupe.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Birthday Girl

Happy Birthday to Jane! She's 8 today. Ice cream cake, balloons, presents, etc. Fun, fun, fun.

Movie Review

Friday night we rented Alice in Wonderland. Meh. Not bad, but only sort of okay. It was mildly engaging, but not even close to arresting. The person playing Alice was depth-less, I thought. Not much presence, rather like Kiersten Dunst and Audrey Tautou.

Non-Alcoholic Beer

I'm a pretty adventurous guy, so today with lunch I drank a non-alcoholic beer, just for fun and to see what it tasted like. It was an Erdinger Hefeweizen. I won't be doing that again. It was crap. Yuck. Horrible. Total Shit. I couldn't finish it.

Last Friday

Friday afternoon following the show finale of the girls' arts camp, we headed to the Scratch baking company for snacks. I ate a tomato sandwich. It was good--seriously good. Tomatoes are in season, Scratch bakes its own bread, and they make their own mayonnaise. The mayonnaise was the best part. I'm a fan of mayo.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


Overdosing on Billy Connolly. Help. Can't stop thinking in a Scottish accent.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Book Review -- Cheap

I enjoyed Cheap so much I'm going to read it again. It's dense with information and stories and historical perspectives--a very good book. There are many references to Dan Ariely's work, which I find similarly engaging. Wal-Mart receives plenty of treatment, and Ikea gets a seriously good skewering. Craftsmanship? Who the hell wants that? Not only do we not want to pay for craftsmanship, most people deeply believe they don't deserve it.

There are well-developed discussions of cheap food and its effect on health. The author references a New England Journal of Medicine article that delivers a somber forecast about children these days: members of that generation will likely be the first in history to die younger than their parents.

Oh, and this paragraph has stayed with me. If you're eating right now, stop. It's about pig shit, er, manure lagoons: "I've probably smelled stronger odors in my life, but nothing so insidiously and instantaneously nauseating. It takes my mind a second or two to get through the odor's first coat. The smell at its core has a frightening, uniquely enriched putridity, both deep-sweet and high-sour. I back away from it and walk back to the car but I remain sick--it's a shivery, retchy kind of nausea--for a good five minutes. That's apparently characteristic of industrial pig shit: it keeps making you sick for a good while after you've stopped smelling it."

Thursday, July 8, 2010

A message for Tony


I think my friends would tell me I'm going too far in giving you the benefit of the doubt here (your "asda codes" links in the comments section are pretty standard troll-behavior), but since you might actually be an interested, honest reader and an all-around nice guy, here's your test. In the comments section:

1) Tell us a little bit about who you are and where you live now.
2) Explain why your "Tony" link doesn't lead to an authentic Blogger profile.
3) You said you saw the movie L'auberge espagnole. Explain exactly where and when you saw it, and your favorite parts of the movie. Discuss obscure scenes or details that can't be found online in reviews or summaries.
4) Lastly, in every comment from now on, leave out any hotlinks.

This test is pass/fail. Go to it, man!

Monday, July 5, 2010


I'm reading a good book called Cheap. In the chapter describing the history of discount culture in the U.S., the author talks about stores' attempts to stock very cheap items--"essentially what most people sought or could be persuaded to buy most of the time." "What this means to customers even today is that a trip to a discount store often begins with high hopes, moves on to a frustrated search, and ends happily in a surprising number of unanticipated purchases."

I've made it to page 68, an indication that I like the book (I usually stop between pages 30 and 50 if I'm not pleased). I'll say more when I'm done.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Movies for the List

I have to write these down quickly before I forget them. At tonight's neighborhood 4th street-fireworks bash, a neighbor recommended two movies: America America and In July. They're on my list.