Monday, February 29, 2016

"This Little Piggy"

My buddy, Daniel, showed me a fun recipe while I was visiting him. He took a nice pork loin, made a few cuts so it rolled out flat, seasoned it and prepped it for stage two. That's where he took boudin out of its casing and spread it on the pork loin before rolling it back up to its original shape. I got my hand slapped for trying to cut off a piece before he could cook it. He quickly tied it closed with twine and cooked it in a loaf pan like that. 
I patiently sat by the oven watching it cook, drooling the whole time like Pavlov had a bell concert going on. Occasionally I would take emotional comfort in the form of some of the incredible cookies his mom had made. Oh, I'm stealing that recipe too! I'll admit here that I nipped myself in the fingers a few times. I knew what was in that oven and I wasn't taking my eyes off of it.
So there I was, groping blindly for cookies to occupy my mind when the timer finally rang. Music to my stomach! I'm pretty sure he thought I was part golden retriever the way I set my head on the counter and whimpered as that pork loin just lay there cooling and resting. Agony! Just give it to me hot! Hell, just pour the juice into a cup and let me drink it! It was like a delicious meat Swiss roll. Eat your heart out Little Debbie! 

I've since gone home and toyed with this recipe. When I make it I put a link of andouille in the middle and wrap the loin in strips of bacon. Yes, bacon. Thick, peppered bacon just the way God intended bacon to be. It's a pork buffet in a single pan. 
I'm thinking of trying a variation of this with red meat except that'll be tricky because we all know the only way to eat red meat is rare. I like my steak with a little life left in it. Sometimes I have to wrestle it but that just adds to the enjoyment. 

So why am I telling you all this? Because I wanted to discuss another important component here. See, when I rein myself in a little there's leftovers. Leftovers of this pork loin are a treasure that'll be hard to top. 
You take a slice of the pork torte, a couple slices of bread, some mayo, ham, cheese (Gouda or mozzarella are excellent for this occasion) and tomato slices and you've got a fantastic sandwich. 
The bread is extremely important here. Too thin and you've just got "mayo fingers". Mayo fingers isn't sexy. So some nice, thick sliced sourdough is the way to go. I prefer to slice it about 3/4 of an inch thick. It's even better if you have a panini press. Or a Foreman grill. Maybe brush a little garlic butter on the outsides before you toast it. I like to elevate my sandwiches to "art" status. 

Oh, you don't eat bread? You're "gluten free"? You fell for that gluten free nonsense they're selling? That's too bad. Whoever started that fad should be shot. 
How is it 10 years ago the only glute anyone knew about was the butt and now everyone's afraid of glutens?! Everyone's running around worried about flour and I'm over here smiling at my sandwich. 
There's "vegetarian" where you don't eat meat except fish and shrimp and stuff because "fish isn't meat". Weird because salmon doesn't taste like apples to me. But vegetarian is "healthier". Healthier than what? Being happy?! What poppycock is this that fish isn't meat? Of course it is. 
And this gibberish "I don't anything that has a face"? That's why we don't serve the whole cow, goober, so it isn't just laying there smiling at you while you enjoy a filet mignon. "Meat is murder". Pfft. Murder is murder; meat is delicious and nutritious. Look, if my dogs were made of bacon I'd eat them. 

Then there's "vegan" which is like the gestapo of the vegetarian class. Not only do they not eat meat, they don't eat anything dairy or anything "animal by-product". So all they eat is plants. Clearly whoever started this fad was chewing on marijuana or those weird mushrooms that make you hear colors and taste sounds. 
So these hippies think we should just eat plants. Only now the plants are striking back. Wheat has apparently taken out advertising to get us off gluten. We can't use peanuts for anything anymore because of allergies. Next we will develop an allergy to lettuce or something. See what you're making the plants do, vegans? 
Tofu isn't a food group. Nor is "organic". Somebody comes up with an idea for how to charge more for food. That's all that "organic" nonsense is. It's the same food, just with a different label on it. Tomfoolery, I tell you. 

We have incisors and canine teeth, people! We were meant to eat meat. Salad is what my dinner ate. Vegans is what causes cannibalism. They end up getting so strung out for actual protein (which is what our body uses to build muscle by the way) that they end up snacking on themselves. 
Here we are apex predators and these jackalopes are back to foraging for berries. You're embarrassing us in front of the other animals. The other animals are going to think we've gone soft. This is how you set it up for rock badgers to take over. 

Have some meat! Don't ask where it came from. You don't need to run down the genealogy of a rabbit in order to enjoy some stew. Besides, do you have any idea how long it'd take to trace that back? They breed like bunnies. 
You want "nonGMO", "non gluten"? Get a friggin fishing license and catch some food. Or go hunting at Winn-Dixie like I do. Gluten free pizza has to taste like goat ass with tomato sauce. That's no way to live. 

Like one person in a million is actually allergic to gluten. The rest of you are just following the herd on that. Makes me wonder if that didn't start that whole "gluten free" thing as some kind of mass social experiment. Some "diet expert" made a bet with another one. "Watch, I bet I can get everyone to quit eating bread." Then they snickered when people started falling for it. 
Look, you're not "gluten intolerant". Being vegan doesn't make you healthier than omnivores. I've known a few vegans and I can certainly tell you that vegans don't seem to be any more "moral" than I am. 
What you are is the top of the damn food chain. Start acting like it, people. 

Friday, February 26, 2016

"The Good, The Bad and The Dumb"

Ok, let's just get this out of the way up front: I'm probably going to say something things in this post that are going to offend some people. I do that sometimes; I say things that upset someone's liberal sensibilities and they write me about what a meany I am. Good times. 
So, quick, avert thine eyes lest you read on and risk my "less than progressive" ways upsetting you. For everyone who's still here, come on in. Enjoy the train wreck about to unfold...

So I go into the driver's lounge with my food, right? Well I end up being the only person in there. First off, that's clearly a sign of the apocalypse. Secondly, the tv is on "COPS", one of my favorite shows. Can my day get any better? I say nay. 
Talk about good fortune, they've got fresh hot wings and half gallon containers of cow juice. I recently switched to low-fat milk so I apparently feel I have to consume larger quantities. Don't judge Grog and his appetite. 

Consumables purchased I practically skip back into the tv room. Just in time for a chase scene to start. (It really is shaping up to be a perfect evening). Here's how it plays out:

A driver was speeding and flees going north in the southbound lanes. He spins out and a cop tries to get in front of him. The dude hits the cop car and takes off. Another cop gets involved. Dude spins out again on a bridge. They think they've got him pinned in. Until he backs up and goes around them. 
From there they change directions and pursue him some more. (By the way, they'd said "we've got him boxed in" right before he figured out they left the lid open on that box. Good going, cops. It shouldn't have taken an engineer to figure out he wasn't as "boxed in" as they thought). Anyway, back to the chase. He's speeding away and loses control on a turn. BAMMO! He hits a car head-on. 

Bad luck for the innocent motorist who got hit. The cops zoom in, get the suspect on the ground and in custody. Hooray for the good guys, right? Their first concern is to check on the other driver and any by-standers. They call for medical assistance, make sure no one is in immediate need and turn their attention to Mr Bad Guy Driver (they don't give names so I make them up). Turns out he's drunk. Not just a little but a lot. We're talking near coma here. 
Ambulances show up and paramedics tend to Mr What The Hell, I Was On My Way Home guy. Long name, I know, but it seemed to fit him. While he's getting looked at the cops explain to the camera crew that they're gonna get Mr Bad Guy Driver taken to the hospital to get checked out then he's going to jail. Because he did bad things and innocent people got hurt. 

And here's where I start having a problem. This jackalope didn't care about anyone else when he started driving drunk. He didn't care who he may kill while playing Gone In 60 Seconds with the cops. Yet he's being taken care of and taken to the hospital in case he got hurt. 
I say no. He doesn't deserve that medical care. Nope. I don't care if he ruptured his spleen and shattered his pelvis. I couldn't care less if he was bleeding out. You show a blatant disregard for those you could've killed, why should we care about your well-being? 

This led me to think about an experience I had many years ago. I'd only been driving a truck for about a year at the time. I can still remember it like it just happened though. 
I was driving through San Antonio about 6 in the morning on a Sunday. Traffic was really light and there was a local day-cab truck in front of me. Fortunately I always leave plenty of distance between me and whoever is in front of me. 

Up ahead I saw a car pull onto the shoulder of the highway and park. The driver's side door opened just a crack. The other truck and I were in the middle lane so there was plenty of room if the driver decided to get out. 
As we got closer, he did get out. As soon as he got both feet on the ground he took off at a sprint and ran out in front of the lead truck. I swerved a little out of instinct but I'm surprised I managed to find the brake pedal because I was so shocked by what I was witnessing. 

This guy made it almost fully in front of the other truck. Almost. Instead he got clipped by the passenger side fender. And he flew. About 10 feet in the air and 15 feet or so sideways. He basically caromed off the truck like a human snooker ball. He landed back on the shoulder of the highway but he was definitely not going to get back up. 
The driver that hit him pulled to the shoulder quickly. I pulled in behind him. I ran back to check on the runner. He was alive but probably just barely. Several cars were already pulling over and everyone was calling 911. 

The truck driver that hit him? He was still behind the wheel. Crying. Yes, I would've probably been too had I been him. Except rumor has it I may lack tear ducts. Who did I feel for though? The truck driver. Not just because he's a fellow truck driver but because he was an innocent victim who's life may get ruined for this. 

The Bouncing Runner got airlifted to the hospital where they managed to save his life. I remember standing there, though, while he was moaning "help me". And I remember thinking "just a second ago you didn't care whose life you ruined and now you want help. Ironic."

Does that make me cold and callous? Possibly. But I think we should care more for those who deserve it. Those who value life. Their own life and the lives of others. 

Criminals generally don't care who they hurt in the commission of their crimes. By definition criminals aren't the most moral people. Some are worse than others, I'll agree. However, I'm real tired of seeing people claim there's a police brutality issue. Theirs are generally the first lives on the line when dealing with the bad guys. Show them some appreciation. 

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

"Narcoleptic Nymphomaniac"

Here I am, the indestructible Incredible Bulk!, sitting in my truck replaying the day's events in my head. Where did I go wrong? How could I have prevented this? Why did I agree to come to Irving, TX? 
I woke up early without my alarm. I guess that should've been my first clue. Normally I like to sleep in when I can so when my body's like "Yeeeeeah! Up and at em, Sparky!" at 4:30 in the morning that should've been a sign. Instead I took as logical since I wanted to get to the Dallas area early. Parking is nearly impossible anywhere near there so the earlier the better. 

Turns out that any time after Friday is just plain bad. Getting there at 1:45 on a Sunday really wasn't the way to go. I'd stopped at 3 different truck stops when I got close. 
The first was a Loves in Rockwall. As I pulled in a truck was vacating a spot. That was the only available spot but I was still at the entrance when I saw a truck already setting up to back into that opening. Figures. 

So I kept on going. A mile down the road is a TA truck stop. I knew it was laughable but I had to try. First, allow me to explain that this truck stop is already on my "in case of emergency...STILL try to avoid this mess" list. Yeah yeah, it's a long name for a list but there are several truck stops on it. Like the Pilot just east of Baton Rouge. Both of these places are horrible. Even tornadoes would skip them. Sadly. 
Anyway, so I get to the TA and circle the lot. Yes, you've gotta circle like vultures in these places. Or like sharks sensing blood in the water. I circle and I pray. And I'm not the praying type so that's gotta tell you something. 
There it is! One open spot. A reserved parking spot. A few of the greedier truck stops like TA and Petro have started doing that, putting in "reserved" spots. These used to be regular parking spots but those corporate leeches found a way to make more money off us since parking is difficult to find. $12.00 for a shower, .35-.50 cents over cost per gallon of fuel, and now $12-$15 just to park. They were also kind enough to put in fast food restaurants like Taco Bell and Burger King and raise the prices above the standard. But I digress. 

I go inside and say I see an open reserved spot available and I'd like to take it. Nope. Apparently that spot's already been taken too. Of course. That's my luck. 
So now I've no choice but go farther into the Dallas area. This is not going to be good. I already know that. As luck would have it, my trucker GPS found a truck stop about 5 miles from where I need to be in Irving. So that's a plus. 
I call them. "Excuse me, my GPS says you guys are a truck stop. Are you an actual full-size truck stop with truck parking?" (Sounds like a stupid question but you'd be surprised how many places aren't really truck stops but "fuel stops" with no parking). "Oh, you are? Excellent. Do you have any parking available?" They don't know. But they were kind enough to let me know it's paid parking. Of course. 
So they don't know if they actually have any spots available and they can't give me directions to get there. They can tell me they have a shop, which is good because I need to replace a wheel seal. They just don't know if they have any mechanics on duty. 

So I'm thinking "you guys aren't much good to me alive, are you?" And I'm off to play "Where's Waldo" with a truck stop. Good times. I try to follow my truck GPS to get there but it has me taking so many turns, twists, backtracks and loops that it'd give a pretzel vertigo. During the trip I must've let loose more cuss words than an Irishman and Australian arguing. I hate Dallas traffic. Especially so on rainy days like this. 
I finally arrive at my destination. Big D's Travel Plaza. Oh boy. The smell alone is probably why there were empty spots. It was an outright attack on my olfactory senses. I was truly shocked not to see a massive pig farm next door since it certainly smelled like there must be. 

Since I wasn't sure I'd find parking down in the parking pit they gave us, I parked first. I left my phone in the truck to protect it from the monsoon as I began the half mile hike up to the fuel desk to pay for my parking. I'd like to say they were pleasant people to deal with but they really weren't. And I was already thinking that THEY should be paying US to park here. 
Parking pass in hand I started the journey back to my truck. I certainly have no problem walking long distances thanks to my tree trunk looking legs but the long drive, weather and Dallas traffic had worn me down. 
So the trip back to my truck was starting to look like a Lord of the Rings kinda journey. I was wishing I'd brought bread and a wine skin. I couldn't even lose myself in the Internet since I'd left my phone in the truck to protect it from the rain. So I just plodded along with my head down, hands in my pockets. 

Had I been looking up I probably wouldn't have given a second thought to the pickup truck coming towards me anyway. We see cars in truck stops all the time so it's no big deal. Well, this time it was I guess. They pulled up to me and asked if I wanted to buy DVDs. Again, not unusual at all. You can get some pretty high quality pirated DVDs at truck stops. 

I wasn't interested in movies today though so I declined. No, I'm not interested in a tv either. Thanks anyway. These were pretty pushy salesmen though and decided they were gonna make money regardless. Or so the gun indicated when they pointed it at me and said "then I'll take what you got. Gimme your wallet." 
Normally I resist being told what to do but I figured I'd better not argue with someone holding a gun. 
After a little pleading from me they were kind enough to let me remove my license before surrendering my wallet. That was mighty swell of them. I would've preferred to keep the whole wallet too. That would've been better. 
Unfortunately, they decided that the license was my cut and everything else was theirs. I work, they get paid. Ah, so this is the welfare "direct approach". Makes more sense now. 

In retrospect I probably could've talked my way into just giving them the $200+ I had in cash and kept my whole wallet. I just wasn't thinking clearly. Guns apparently do that to me. At the time I just asked myself if my life was worth my wallet and its contents and decided it was worth more. Did I overdramatize it in my head at the time? I doubt it. However, I don't know if the gun was loaded or not and figured I didn't want to ask. Hell, I can honestly say I don't even know if it was real. It probably was but, again, does one ask in this situation? I'm not sure what the robbery protocol is. What I do know is that I've got two kids at home that want to see me come home. That and I've gotta stick around so I can share these lovely posts for you guys. Gosh, so much responsibility. 

I was told I should've immediately called the police once I got to my truck. I didn't catch the license plate and my only real description was "it was two black guys and a big gun". Sure, in the Dallas area that should narrow it down significantly. 
Anyway, what've I learned from this? Mostly that that truck stop really stinks. Both figuratively and literally. I certainly won't be going back there. The worst part? They didn't have milk. Ruins my whole day. 
The other thing I learned is that I am, in fact, still indestructible. Notice I'm still here and haven't been destroyed? Clearly that makes me indestructible. Logic. Tada and shit. 

Situations like this are rare but I can tell you firsthand that they happen. So the next time you're mad that a truck is in your way or something just remember that if that's the worst part of your day maybe your day isn't so bad. 

Now, to address a couple of the questions I've been asked:

A) were you scared?

Seriously?! Of course I was scared. There was a gun pointed at my face. It would totally ruin my future modeling career if I got my face shot off. Was I scared?? The dude ended up with my wallet, didn't he? You do the math. 

B) what kind of gun was it?

Big. Is that a make? All I knew was that whatever came out of the hole at the end would probably make me dead or in serious pain. I don't like either of those things. Sorry I didn't think to ask the guy what his weapon of choice was. 

C) do you even know if it was loaded?

Um. No. I felt that moment wasn't the appropriate time to discuss with him the importance of gun safety. I do know that if it's loaded and he pulls the trigger it makes a noise but I didn't want to have to identify the gun by its sound or verify its lethality that way. 

After a long, less than perfect day, I just headed back to my truck. My pride and finances were injured but I was physically fine. So I made my obligatory phone calls then decided I was just done with the day. 

Monday, February 22, 2016

"Not an Indecent Proposal"

Cigars and champagne all around! I was proposed to, I think. Well, I mean, technically I wasn't asked or anything yet but I was nominated for the Liebchen Award. So that's pretty much the same thing. I wonder if there'll be a swan carved out of ice. Of course, the girl who did it is married so that may present a problem. 
Wait. I was just informed that that doesn't constitute a proposal. That was a close call. At least I'm off the hook for marriage. And, apparently, it's called the Liebster Award not the Liebchen Award. Liebster, Lobster, Liebchen...eventually I'll get it right. Still, an award nomination is a nomination so I'm still a bit excited. Looking at the by-rules it seems I'm supposed to answer a few questions first. Let's take a look at these and see what it's all about. 

1)"what encouraged you to start your blog?"

Hhmm. Good question. I was told that if I started a blog and got enough readers then I could interview the President. Turns out you've gotta have a YouTube channel and be nearly nude in a tub of cereal. Clearly I aimed too high. 
Of course, I started my blog with the poems I'd written so maybe I was just hoping I'd find other people with minds as twisted as mine. Aaaand, here you are! 

2) "what niche/genre is your blog?"

Eclectic. Is eclectic a niche? Honestly, I'd like to think that my blog is its own niche or genre. I kinda just do my own thing. Even I'm usually not too sure what I'm going to post most of the time. I'm a "caveman of mystery" and stuff. 

3)"do you post on a schedule or when the inspiration takes you?"

First off, I'm the Incredible Bulk! It'll take a lot more than inspiration to take me anywhere. I have to be coaxed along. With food.
I tried to keep a schedule when I first started but I tend to lose track of time. So now I find I just write a bunch of stuff periodically then post it whenever I feel like. Or whenever my readers start asking if I'm dead. I'm like a super ultra low budget Stephen King. Only my stuff is free. Mostly because I can't get anyone to buy it. 

4) "what are some of the big milestones you've celebrated for your blog?"

Well, I recently celebrated my first year. Kinda. It may or may not have actually been a year. It was more like a rough estimate because I'm not good of keeping track of time. I'm not even sure how old I am half the time.  
The celebration was fun though. You guys really missed a good time. I had some milk, watched some NCIS on Netflix and did some laundry. I'm quite the party animal. 

5) "do you use social media to promote your blog? Links?"

My marketing budget is about 12 cents a year. I save diligently to meet that goal and I'm quite proud to say that this year I'm on track to beat it by at least a nickel. 
So I use what free social media I can get. Somehow I linked my blog to Twitter but I don't know how I did it. It's like magic. Every time I post, Twitter sends a message to both of my fans. 
I also made a Facebook page called "Christian Touchet Writes". Such an original title, right? That's me...master of creativity. I figured it'd be easy for me to remember and spell that way. I almost called it "stuff Christian Touchet writes that people may or may not enjoy" but I thought I'd go simple. 
Links? Yes, I'm sure that are links and earls and hotteepees and stuff to my sites. Who spells Earl, URL anyway? That's just goofy. Do I have any idea what they are? Pfft. Half the time I can't find my own blog or Facebook page. Tech savvy I am not. 

6) "on average how long do you find you spend putting together a post?"

Seriously, have you read my posts? Can you imagine someone spending more than 5 or 10 minutes writing them? Yeah, me either. I can barely imagine people spending 10 minutes reading them.
There are a few I put more time into either "researching" (like with "Oh Sheet, It's Grog" or "So Pretty It Hurts") or actually editing and rewriting (there were a couple of poems that I edited a few times until they came out the way I wanted) but, for the most part, I don't spend much time writing them. 
Most of what I post I write on the spot. Even the poems you read are written quickly. For instance, "The Man of Tin" that was on my anniversary post was written in about 10 minutes while I was on the phone with a friend talking about my day. I find that's how most of them come about...I throw something together as a result of multitasking. 

7) "as a child what did you want to be when you grew up?"

Rich. Duh. No kid says "I want to be impoverished when I grow up." I wanted to be so rich I'd have my own plane and I'd fly it all over the world only stopping to buy new cars and hotels. I'd have supermodel girlfriends and stuff. Crap, I just realized I wanted to be Hugh Hefner. 
After that it was a toss-up between Darth Vader and Peter Pan. After years of dedication I'm pretty sure I've achieved my goal. I'm a giant, mouth breathing kid. Mission accomplished. Although the James Earl Jones voice would've been cool. And I never got that black suit, cape and helmet. That was kinda disappointing. 
Fortunately, I never became a veterinarian. The dream of all nature loving nerds like myself. The first time I bit a dog back I'd have been sued. So that was a bullet dodged I reckon. 

8) "what is the link to your favorite post on your blog and why?"

My favorite blog post is probably either "Oh Sheet, It's Grog" or "So Pretty It Hurts". If I had to choose, I'd go with the latter over the former. Why? Because I thought it was downright funny. Quite a true story but still funny in retrospect. 
I'm supposed to provide you a link to it but I really don't know how. It's on this blog somewhere though. It's worth searching for in my humble opinion. 

9) "what is your guilty pleasure in literature?"

I'm not sure that any of my pleasures are guilty but I do have several books I love reading. There's Sun Tzu's "The Art of War", Dumas's "The Count of Monte Cristo", a book by Trevanian called "Shibumi" and the complete works of both Poe and Lovecraft. All of these are often reread. And I've got a small collection of comics I've managed to save. Most are first editions or limited series' like Deadpool 1-4. 

10) "what is 1 piece of advice you have to give other new bloggers?"

Write about what you enjoy, write with passion and write for yourself. I write poetry because it's cathartic. It's an outlet. My other posts I write strictly for fun. Try not to take yourself too seriously. By that I mean simply that people may criticize your beliefs or feelings but don't let it get you down. Me, I like when people disagree with my beliefs sometimes. It means they're thinking about it and not just following what everyone else does. 
My biggest tip, though, is do all of this with good grammar. Use spell check if you have to. Don't write in some urban slang. Learn the difference between the homonym words like "to, too and two" or "there, they're and their" among others. 
An occasional mistake may happen but nothing makes me dismiss any written piece quicker than terrible grammar. If you're going to write "informative" pieces then do some actual fact checking. Ok, I'll quit now or this last question will turn into its own rant. You get the idea by now. 

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

"The Anniversary"

Ok, so I started this goofy little blog about a year ago. It was all just on a lark, really. I'd had a few friends who tried to encourage me to publish what I call my "rhymy word things" and a blog seemed a good stepping stone.
Since then my page turned into rants about society, little excerpts of my life and tales of Grog, my alter ego/caveman brain. I've enjoyed writing these posts and I've enjoyed the feedback I've received from you guys. Thank you for your support. 

Since this is like some "first anniversary" I figured I'd go back to my roots for a bit. I've had some readers recently ask if I still write poetry and I've even been contacted about co-authoring (or co-publishing or whatever that's called) a book of poems. 
In a few months I may even publish (after a year of talk) my own collection for those of you twisted enough to like my poetry. (Wow, I keep referring to it as "poetry" which sounds weird to me). 
Anyway, this long introduction was really just about plugging a soon-to-publish book or two and to explain why I suddenly decided to post a poem again. Who knows, maybe I'll just post a random one sometimes when I'm too lazy to write an actual blog post. 

I can't imagine any of you aren't familiar with this story but I figured I'd offer my spin on it:

"The Man of Tin"

We took a trip down that road paved in yellow gold
Through poppy fields and their sleeping curse
Into the City where we'd find the answers we were told
I can't decide which part of the journey was the worst

There were angry trees and monkeys who could fly
A witch who was ruthless, cold and mean 
There were a couple times we thought we would die
But the girl kept thinking an end of a rainbow could be seen

So we kept moving forward until we finally got here
"The great wizard", they said, "would fix things for you."
Then you laughed, you pointed and only your ridicule was sincere
Saying you'd help us only if this one task we'd do

"Kill the witch and bring me her magic broom"
You said it like it was it was just an everyday chore
So off we went to her castle and snuck into her room
We soaked her with water and she is no more

You may fool the scarecrow and lion but not this man of tin
Hiding behind your curtain you think you can judge us all
You sent us away not expecting us to come back again
But we surprised you and it was the witch not us to fall

The scarecrow, that brainless fool, you could outsmart
He couldn't see that you were nothing more than a fake
And fell for your smoke and mirrors from the very start
You had no intellect to give and only trust to take 

The lion, he lacked both courage and conviction
So he was easy for you to take advantage of
He came to you asking that you cure his cowardly affliction
So you pretended he was brave for the sake of love

The girl and her dog were lost, this much is true
And in your balloon you could've offered them passage home
But when it came time you claimed there wasn't room for two 
So you tried to float away, leaving her feeling all alone

But I'm that Tin man whose heart is black as coal
So I'll burn your Emerald City down with laughter in my eyes
As I shoot you down and show them a Wizard was only a role
For all your parlor tricks you have no magic, only lies

*I feel I should mention here that I know I left 2 elements out. So I can address them if you'd like. 

A) the Munchkins. Yes, they pointed the girl in the right direction. But they also knew she was alone in a strange land with a trip in front of her that was going to take several days. You'd think they'd have packed her a little lunch or something. 
Those midgets essentially kicked her out of their village after a song and dance and sent her into the woods to starve to death. 

B) then there's this "good witch" Glenda. She knows the girl just wants to go home but waits until AFTER she's nearly killed several times to go "yeah, you could've gone home right after you get here." Seriously?! How good IS this witch? She watches Dorothy and the gang go through all of this stuff and smiles when she tells Dorothy she had the ability to leave all along. Glenda sounds like a sadist to me; I'm not sure how "good" I would call her. 

Sunday, February 14, 2016

"Full Metal Valentine"

So today is Valentine's Day. It's that lovey-dovey day and stuff. So, with teary eyes, I thought I'd say a few words. You know, to express my feelings on such a sweet day. So let's get to it. 

So where did Valentine's Day come from? Well, it comes from some pretty obscure stuff. Way back around 200 A.D. it had been determined that "married men make bad soldiers". So Emperor Claudius banned marriage and this Saint Valentine dude would marry them off before they got drafted. 
Boy have things changed. I remember being married. There were times I'd have gladly sacrificed myself to a volcano if it got me a little peace and quiet. Fight the "hordes"? You betcha! Bring on the pain and suffering, please. 

Let's examine this Saint Valentine guy, though, rebel that he was. Was he real? Well, apparently there were many people that got that distinction. The good ole Catholic Church kinda made him up so that they could try to convert more people from paganism. It seems every year another "Saint Valentine" was martyred around the 14th. The Romans would behead the poor dude on the 14th and then have all kinds of fun throwing Christians into lion pits starting the 15th. It was a punishment for turning away from the Roman gods and seeking Christianity.  Fun times. "Here's your lacy little heart card now go play with the giant kitty cats."

That was just a fun little part of their festival, Lupercalia. That started on February 15th when the guys would draw names of the lucky lady that'd be their date for the night. There's even speculation that that woman would be the guy's sexual partner for the year. 
Who needs hearts, flowers and chocolates when you've got a hat to draw names from? I wonder if there were ever guys that were like "nah. No way. Let me draw again. Have you seen this gargoyle looking girl I got stuck with?!" Or the poor girls that got stuck with the nastiest guy in the realm? 

So here I sit, enjoying my Valentine's Day in the most appropriate manner I can think of. I'm watching Full Metal Jacket. It's one of my favorite love stories. 

Friday, February 12, 2016

"Idiots at Work"

I guest starred on Ice Road Truckers the other day. Ok, so maybe I just drove through the snow and pretended there was a camera crew with me as I talked about my job. I'm all driving along going, "see, ya gotta be careful in these mountains when it's icy like this or you'll end up like that car over there.." Then I'd point to a car in the median. 
It was great fun and my audience loved it as my narrative continued. The camera would turn and pan to people slipping and sliding as they tried to maintain control. "Idiots behind the wheel" I'd call them. I cautioned my viewers to drive sensibly in non-dry weather. 

I know I'm considered a "professional driver" because of my line of work. However, not everyone behind the wheel of a big truck is, to my reckoning, "professional". I see plenty of these guys that just generally make the rest of us look bad. 
Maybe it's not just truckers though. Maybe Americans in general just lack sense. Both on the road and off. 
As a flatbedder I went to many a job site delivering materials. Nails, boards, sheets of metal, bulldozers, all-terrain forklifts, and other hazards were all over those sites. Yet I'd see drivers hop out wearing flip flops like they were about to unload a cooler at the beach. Then they'd bitch and moan about being told to put on actual SHOES. You know, those things designed to help you keep your toes. 

I'd see guys getting out of trucks with bellies swinging way past their crotch, wearing shirts from the kids section at Walmart. Dude, no one wants to see that. No one. Seriously, guys, if you feel a breeze blowing through your belly button and it's whistling like tornado in a canyon, maybe that should clue you in that your shirt is too small. 
If you're a guy with a "C" cup, maybe you should buy bigger clothes. Or go on a diet. I've had many a meal ruined by seeing some man-walrus belly up to the buffet trough and had that exposed flesh rubbing up on the food. Nothing makes me ask for my check quicker. In fact, I think I just threw up a little in my mouth just typing this out. Why must I be such a visual thinker?! 

Speaking of which, who's the evil mastermind that started this trend of walking around in pajamas? Or socks with sandals? What the hell, people?! Pajamas are for going to bed, not for your afternoon stroll! What's next, walking around in briefs and a robe? "Oh, it's time to go get gas, better put my robe on." 
Back to the socks and sandals. Isn't the point behind sandals so that you can be barefoot but not have rocks hurt your feet? I've even seen guys wearing flip flops with socks. I mean, I appreciate you covering your talons but maybe shoes would go better with socks. The point behind socks is to absorb the sweat from your feet. You want to be barefoot but your feet sweat like a greenhouse?! 

And what's up with those ridiculous fingerless "driving gloves"? Clearly you didn't just step out of the gym. Is the steering wheel too heavy? What's next, a helmet while you drive?! This isn't Indy racing, it's truck driving. Although, admittedly, I see people in cars wearing gloves too sometimes. Let me help you out look stupid. We laugh at you folks who wear gloves to drive. 
Just once I want to get out of my truck at a truck stop wearing a full on NASCAR driving suit. Gloves, neck brace, helmet and all. I'd wait for some dude in his cute little fingerless gloves to ask why I'm dressed like that and I'd be all, "what? This is the next step up from your gloves, man. This is the 'full pro' kit they sell. You ready for the big leagues?" I bet the sarcasm would be lost on him though. Could you just imagine seeing someone driving around in their little Miata dressed like that? I'd wanna wreck into them and scream "rubbing is racing!" 

One day I'm going to have to go to the gokart racing track dressed like that. Stop every other lap and ask them for a tire change. I wonder how they'd react...

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

"Survive This.."

I'm old. I'll admit that. How old am I, you ask? Old enough that I remember 70's and 80's television. Back when special effects was horrible, Disney movies were on every Saturday and/or Sunday night and it was safe to let us kids watch it. Typically the special affects are pretty awesome now. Except in movies like Sharknado. Granted, that movie itself is a ludicrous concept but the special affects are horrendous. I could give my 6 year old an etchasketch and he could make some of those scenes look more realistic. 
So we generally try to stick with more educational programming at my house. Or, at least, the channels that had that type of programming when they first started. Say, for instance, National Geographic. I remember those old magazines. They were all about learning. I had a subscription and lived for getting my magazines. (On second thought, I think that's the first place I saw boobs as a kid. Maybe that was part of why I enjoyed my subscription.) What the hell happened to TV though?! 

I put on a show on the National Geographic Channel called "Wicked Tuna". Oh good, the boys can learn about tuna fishing while I'm entertained as well. (We all know I'm no fisherman so they certainly won't learn from me. I can barely catch salmon at the grocery store) Bad, bad choice. Yeah, I know, guys on a boat fishing...of course they're gonna cuss like sailors. I just didn't expect Nat Geo would air the language. I was expecting some censorship with beeps and stuff. I guess if they bleeped out every cuss word it would sound like R2D2 were giving the Gettysburg Address. 
I found there was less education to it and more just watching some foul mouthed people float around in boats. I know, I know, "well what were you expecting? It's a show about catching tuner fishes." And you'd be right in thinking my idea that it would have educational content was a bit unrealistic. So I switched channels. 

I decided I'd go back to watch Food Network. I love Chopped and Cutthroat Kitchen. I was already in the mindset that language was an issue so I started paying attention. 
Sure enough, on that channel there's not much profanity and they censor just about all of it out. But then who can really cuss about food? I may not like Brussels sprouts but I'm not going to hurl profanities at them. Although I may be tempted to drop some very colorful phrases if someone tried to steal my bacon. I'd probably also smack them with a skillet. Certain lines you just don't cross, people! 

So why is it the "educational channels" like Nat Geo and Discovery allow such blatant use of foul language? Especially on shows that are on in the middle of the day on weekends? Don't they realize kids still watch tv? 

I wonder, though, at what point did scripted tv shows start using this kind of language? Shows gradually went from "golly, Wally" to the point where hurling profanities on family shows is commonplace. We call it "progressive society" but are we really progressing? 

And then there's "reality TV". Are you kidding me?? I remember when Survivor first came out. I was all excited expecting a real-life cross between Gilligan's Island and Lord of the Flies. 
Imagine my disappointment when they were basically playing games for a steak dinner. "Survivor"...pffft. If one of their little actor people got a hang nail or bad sunburn they'd airlift them off the island. Here I was expecting them to be drawing sticks to see who kills the fat guy for food. If only GoPro had been around when the Donner party headed West. THAT would've been a show!!

You want to make Survivor good? Put married couples on that deserted island, no food and get them drunk. Now strap them to lie detectors and let them have at it for a couple hours. You'll have savages in no time. 

Then there's this show, The Bachelor. Let me get this right, they take a rich guy, put him in a house with a bunch of women willing to marry a rich guy they've never met? How could this possibly go wrong? Seriously. They're good looking women who've basically said they're desperate enough to blindly marry a rich guy. Sure, they're in it for "love". Why not just call it "Golddigger's Ball"? 
Let me explain this to you, Mr Bachelor...she's hot and so single she has to agree to a televised blind date in hopes to get a boyfriend or husband? Newsflash, she's probably crazy. You know, like the rich guy that apparently can't get a date without help from the tv network. He's rich and good looking and no one else wants him? That's not a redflag?! How sweet, I bet they're a matching set of psycho. 

Marriage Bootcamp. Seriously?! Look, folks, if you need Basic Training to stay together then maybe you should stay together...with OTHER PEOPLE! Can we do Marriage Bootcamp on Survivor Island? Oh, I know, put the folks from The Bachelor out there with them. Watch everyone fight over who's crazier. Maybe put a tiger and some chickens on the island. Have a little fun with it.