Monday, April 30, 2007

Whiskey River, Don't Run Dry

Willie Nelson is 74 today.

Being a Texan, a marijuana connoisseur, and a Dennis Kucinich supporter, he gets a two-fer. Play 'em both.

What happened to peace on earth?

This was one of the comments on YouTube to this video. Sad. And ignorant. And apparently the asshole could use some overtime in spelling class. Just what is "American?"

Kucinich is a Anti American Socilaist....he isnt "American".

Love Willie's music but his brain is fried on dope and shrooms.... Go to one of his concerts and watch his drug induced kids and alcoholic band try to perform.

And before I forget, let's do a tribute to Muddy Waters who died on this day in 1984.

Brandi Carlile and the "Twin-digo Girls"

Brandi Carlile always has her finger on the pulse of where I'm at spiritually. I am rarely so moved by music. Well, not really. I should say by "new" music.

Brandi Carlile

Photo credit: Hiroyuki for the NY Times.

A couple of weeks ago I received her new CD ("The Story") as a gift from a a blogger pal.

I had planned to write a review but haven't been able to get it done. The CD is exquisite and I was so sorry I'd been unable to attend her show here in Austin. Upon reading this review in today's NY Times I decided to just link to that, and to thank my friend for sending me this timely gift.

Starting at a whisper and building to a roar, she deployed strategies borrowed from Jeff Buckley, among others. But what came across wasn’t any calculation; it was simply the raw power of her voice, and the conviction to let it loose.

Gotta love a review like that. Brandi, you're a fine wine.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Steppenwolf and Grand Funk Railroad

Fuck yeah, this is what Sunday nights were made for.

God bless the lovely sound of white boys acting black.
See ya later, gator.

Taking Care of Business

This has been a nice weekend. I wish I'd done more yesterday instead of scrambling to get things done today. I have had some much needed personal time to do a few things around the house -- some dusting and organizing in the closet. I'm continuing to upload songs to the Zen player as we speak.

Call me stupid but I'm quite amazed that I can upload thousands of songs and the damn thing doesn't weigh an ounce more than it did when I took it out of the box. I won't be surprised if I don't get 80% of my entire CD collection loaded onto this device at some point. The other 20% I probably don't care about and I'll bet I could get those loaded on as well. The idea that I could have my entire music collection stored on a device that fits in the palm of my hand just blows my mind.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

This Works

It's so David Lynchian.

Does The Drama Ever End?

I love my job. I really do. And it came along, as fate would have it, when I was most desperate for a good steady income. There's a lot of politics involved in upper management and it may have taken a rather ugly turn yesterday.

I am responsible for buying and managing a portion of a television advertising campaign for a client with one of the most well-known names in America. It's a lot of work but I am good at what I do, and at this stage in my life I can't think of much else I'd rather do, at least in terms of jobs with a steady source of income. Plus I have virtually no supervision (my boss works from the east coast).

So why did my boss have to stir up such a shitstorm yesterday? She went above the head of her boss to some of the higher ups and, accordng to my source, claimed that we were all frustrated with management and about ready to quit, among other things. Yeah, I have issues with some aspects of management -- we really don't have any to speak of. But I'm not about to walk out the door because of it. One of my co-workers is frustrated and may quit, but she lives on the east coast as well and the issue with her has been a lack of training and frustration with our boss.

So apparently, we're going to be keeping our boss, who will now be reporting to a new boss on the first floor, and rumor has it we may be reassigned to the first floor of our office, away from the head of our department and our other colleagues.

One of the issues I have had is with the poor level of communication. This isn't going to help if we're going to be separated from the rest of our department. It makes no sense.

I'm also rather baffled how management could make such a decision based on information without discussing it with the people affected, and to get the other side of the story. As I said, communication is an issue there.

Due to this, I'm not really in a blogging mood today.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

"Extremely Urgent" My Ass

It's such fun to come home from a hectic day at work and have the phone ringing from creditors with an "extremely urgent" need to speak with me. Yes, and it's extremely urgent that I collect about $35,000 from clients who are in arrears. I'll get to it as soon as I have time. In the meantime, as Billie Holiday might sing, "Do Nothing Til You Hear From Me. And you never will."

Fire the person who is making these stupid calls, and you'll save about what I owe you.

Just Deaths Today

Lucille Ball died of a heart attack at 78 on this day in 1989.

And here's a classic example of why I detest the "Today-in-History" website I use to retrieve so much of my trivia:

1984 Count Basie jazz piano great, dies at 78

1984 William "Count" Basie jazz piano great, dies on 80th birthday

OK, which is it? Don't fucking confuse me when I'm drinking wine....

Wikipedia says:
William "Count" Basie (August 21, 1904 – April 26, 1984) was an American jazz pianist, organist, bandleader, and composer.

So he died on this day, and he was nearly 80. I'll buy that.

Let's have some of the Count with Ella who had a birthday yesterday. Can't go wrong with that mix.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

I am 10% Republican

Not bad since I considered myself 100% Republican when I put this sign up back in 1980 when I had the Republican Party headquarters in a county which barely had 10 Republicans! (By the way, I painted the sign myself. Not bad!)

I am:
"You're a tax-and-spend liberal democrat. People like you are the reason everyone else votes for guys like Reagan or George W."

Are You A Republican?

Gee, thanks a LOT, Jami.


I do love my fellow Taureans. Happy Birthday, girl! You are missed. She was born on this day in 1918.

We had tickets for a salute to Ella to benefit the Minority AIDS Project back in Los Angeles on January 10, 1995. We got to see a bunch of great musicians including Stevie Wonder, Chaka Khan, and many more, but unfortunately Ella's health was already such that she was unable to attend. I was so disappointed. She died on June 15, 1996.

Scat for me baby!

Damn! I feel better now!

Also, a big shout out to Stu Cook of Creedence who turned 62 today.

If Willie Were a Black Man

I'm sure this would have turned out differently. (The old link expired. Found a new source.)

A Not So Bright Idea, But I'm Glad Somebody Had It

Whose idea was it to open this last night? AFTER we drank half a bottle of tequila?

But, DAMN it was good. Tell me it's hump day. Please.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007


Without seeming too crass, that stands for "fuck me running," as in "I've had the wildest day and I am forcing myself to post."

I'm glad everyone liked the garden post, and I promise I will try to adhere to a Monday Garden Blog, although with this being Texas, that might not work so well in July and August, but we'll see. I do like to take requests obviously.

My day at work started off great. I was relaxed and ahead of the game. By around 4:00 this afternoon things started to go to shit. I think a meeting is in order for tomorrow. When people start demanding the impossible, it's time to start explaining the situation to them in succinct terms.

Under a tequila influenced haze, I have composed an email to myself at work which I will edit tomorrow for general workplace consumption. Hell, this sure would be easier if there was actually a MANAGER present.

My job makes me feel like I'm trying to excel in calf-roping at the rodeo. Metaphorically speaking.

Anyhoo, I'm off to prep the pizza.

Roy Orbison's birthday was yesterday. I leave you with this gem.

Monday, April 23, 2007

One For The Roses

Specifically for Nicole. Ask, and ye shall receive.

After a particularly crappy birthday weekend, I am now in a much better mood after a productive Monday at work. Funny how a bad weekend can make a Monday at work seem great. So, I tend to get in a floral mood around my birthday so here we go.

I haven't walked around the Kona Ranch in a few months. It was a nice outing.

I love my cactus patch with the roses behind it, and the snapdragons were a nice surprise to find. I had no idea they were blooming. Our house is an odd layout and we hardly ever use the front entrance and patio where they are planted. I didn't realize until I'd posted this that the two cactus photos are almost identical. Sorry, it was a laborious process assembling these from 13 photographs I took and I'm rather worn out this evening.

The Jerusalem sage is looking quite nice this year as well. This is a hardy plant as it's growing in some very shallow poor soil and has been for several years.

In the garden, we have an odd onion which looks a bit like a snake which has swallowed a small rodent. And the pea blossoms are as lovely as an orchid.

In the picture below, txrad is showing off his bi-color roses which have come from the same plant.

The middle picture is a musk rose -- definitely a climber. It has grown high up into a dead tree and there are roses dangling from high branches which aren't easily seen in the photograph. It's quite spectacular. The bottom photograph is a shot of my collard greens again. Obviously I am obsessed with collards.

It was about 4 years ago when I decided to order several different roses from an online nursery. I ended up ordering about twelve and txrad thought I'd lost my mind. Our soil here is not great, and it's very difficult to dig a hole more than a few inches deep due to the limestone. I ended up putting several roses in pots but I did find places to put a few in the yard. Not all are pictured here because they aren't at their best currently. All in all, I'd say I have no regrets with my frivolous purchase.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

It's My Birthday And I'll Cry If I Want To

Since there aren't any noteworthy birthdays today for me to blog about (aside from Charles Mingus, Eddie Albert, Aaron Spelling, Glen Campbell, Jack Nicholson, and Peter Frampton), I can devote this post to my own birthday. Besides, I would be very unhappy at the prospect of being upstaged by a bunch of lesser-knowns.

A couple of other interesting events occurred on this day:

In 1793 President George Washington attended the first circus in the US, and in 1864 the US minted a 2¢ coin which happened to be the first appearance of "In God We Trust" on coins. What a mistake that turned out to be. I'm a firm believer in the separation of God and money.

It's kind of a crappy day down here in Austin TX. Cloudy, drizzly, dismal. Very much reflective of the mood I've been in lately. txrad is about to go to the office to do some work so we won't even get to do anything fun this afternoon. He hasn't even wished me a happy birthday. He did issue a directive my way: "You can clean up that cat vomit." Nice. Happy Birthday to Me. That, my friends, is exactly what I wanted to do on my birthday.

.........Black Soap..........

Saturday, April 21, 2007

I Am The Passenger

Well, lo and behold, aside from being one day away from my own birthday, there are several who have influenced me greatly, and they are having their celebrations today:

Iggy Pop is 60
Why do his pants keep falling down?

Robert Smith is 48.

Michael Timmons is 48.

Thankfully I'm not as old as any of those fellas.

The Gender Genie Thinks I'm Male

I selected a couple of paragraphs from my post on Friday evening and submitted it for evaluation after being tipped off by katecontinued in a comment thread about this "gender genie" thingey over at majikthise and I suppose it works pretty well.

Female Score: 114
Male Score: 170

Fort Wayne: Buddhist Hotspot

I love learning new facts about my diverse country. Who would have guessed that Ft. Wayne, Indiana has the largest concentration of Burmese refugees in the country? Interesting.

Fort Wayne, a city of 248,000 people and 606 Christian churches, is in the midst of a Buddhist temple boom. Southeast Asians have opened six temples here in the last seven years, including one for Laotians, two for Burmese and two for Mon, another Burmese ethnic group.

As you might expect, this being America and all, things are going to take a turn for the worse.

On religious holidays, hundreds of Buddhists park on two-lane Sylvia Street, blocking driveways and ripping up yards with their tires. A neighbor, Anna MacDougal, has complained to the police and zoning inspectors, to no avail, she said. At times she has paid tow truck drivers to take cars away.

Temple leaders, acutely aware of the parking problem but oblivious to Americans’ love for grass, converted the front lawn into a parking lot and covered it with gravel.

I wouldn't be real happy if one of my neighbors starting holding religious services in a home -- particularly if it involved dozens of cars blocking access to my garage, or leaving ruts in my yard.

However, this person takes it a bit too far:

“I was appalled,” said Donna Davis, 56, a medical assistant who lives next door. “If they want to live here, why can’t they start acting like Americans?”

Perhaps Ms. Davis would like to come see the American who lives behind me and has turned his yard into a junk collection facility, and plays his stereo so loud I can hear it in my house. I really wish he'd start acting more Buddhist. But whatever..

“I can’t stand them,” said another neighbor, Kelli Lawson, 33, who says she is uncomfortable with many aspects of Buddhist life. “It’s strange to us, so we don’t like it.”


Lay Buddhists say they generally feel comfortable in Fort Wayne. But Venerable Devananda says he gets nervous eating breakfast at the Golden Corral, his favorite restaurant. “I don’t feel comfortable going out in public in my robes because people point and laugh at me,” he said.

Why must Americans behave like 7-year-old children? (I'm trying really hard not to use the term "stupid" here.)

Jesus wore robes, didn't he?

Perhaps it's time for America to have a new national motto:

If it's strange, we hate it.

Friday Pussy Blog

Thanks to Rebecca for the nudge. I wasn't not going to do a pussy blog; I was just going to take my sweet time about it.

This is an old one but I love it. I was never sure where the daddies were supposed to sit. From left to right: Sissy, Samantha, and Jezebel. Jezebel passed on back in 2004 and was reincarnated as Tater Tot, shown here in aloof mode:

Saturday To-Do List

1. Buy cat litter
2. Buy tequila
3. Pour cat litter into shitbox
4. Drink tequila

Friday, April 20, 2007

It's Friday....


I hate being in a bad mood on a Friday because I consider this to be an integral part of my weekend. As soon as I walked in the door after a pretty tiring day, the smell of cat urine reminded me it was time to clean the litter boxes. One of them I had to completely empty out and of course I am out of clean replacement litter -- guess I should have checked that beforehand but there really wasn't an alternative and I'm sure as hell not going back out today.

Then the kitchen needed to be cleaned prior to making pizza dough. I also wanted to get some piles of newspapers out of the kitchen and as I was gathering those up I noticed some cat vomit lurking behind the stack.

Then I heard some crazed dogs in the garage going after one of our cats. I went out in the yard looking for Tiger and already being in a tizzy, I completely lost it when I saw a kite in the yard from the fucking asshole drummer-in-training neighbor who has a kite flying fetish and lets them fall where they may. And "may" is usually our yard and I'm SICK OF THIS. I want to gather them up and go deposit them in his trash-infested shithole of a yard. I can't get all the kite string out of the trees and I cut my finger trying to pull the string out of one tree.

When I went in to the house to get a bandage I noticed txrad had left in one of the cars and I suspected he had gone after the jogger who was responsible for the dog or dogs coming into our garage and attacking our cat.

Let's just cut a long story short and say that it's been a hell of a week and I'm not particularly enjoying Friday as it currently stands.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Is It Friday Yet?

Tater Tots just went in the oven.

Not much tequila left, but damn, it's 8:11 so I'll get by.

I've already logged in 41 hours this week and Friday is yet to come. And yes, I do get paid overtime.

Life is good. The weekend is approaching and I have a backlog of posts to throw up.

It's Just a Party, Janet

Tim Curry is 61
Come up to the lab, and see what's on the slab.

Also, the late great Dudley Moore was born on this day in 1935.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Tequila with a Beer Chaser...

... is exactly what I need after a day like this. Of course part of the reason I had a day like this was due to tequila with a beer chaser LAST night. It's a viscious circle.

For some reason this week I'm maintaining over 100 visitors a day which is considerably higher than what my average had been since starting the new job in January. So, thanks to all who are visiting, and especially commenting. Welcome!

Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown was born on this day in 1924.

In 1973, 19-year-old Declan "Costello" McManus played his first solo gig in Twickenham, England. He would change his first name to Elvis by the time his 1977 debut, My Aim Is True, was released. And to make things really freaky, he married Diana Krall.

In other music news, we walked across the street from work this morning and got to see Ruthie Foster sing a couple of songs live on KGSR. Free food too! I had myself a cranberry scone and a cup of coffee, then grabbed a bottle of water on the way out. It's all part of a fund-raising benefit for our local Capitol Area Food Bank.

Slaid Cleaves is playing there Thursday morning. Should I take the camcorder and get my own video?

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Petrol Price Check

QotD: How much is premium where you are? I don't give a damn about regular since I can't use it. Just a few weeks ago it was about $2.35 here in Austin. Then I noticed it going up several cents a day and suddenly it was $2.59. I tend to notice such things while sitting on the bus staring out the window. I think I may have filled up both cars around that time. Then it kept going... $2.65, $2.75... and now premium is up to about $2.93.

Summer is quite a ways off. Apparently we're going to be seeing $3.00+ long before Memorial Day and frankly, I don't give a shit. My apologies to those of you who must drive places, but I'm glad I'll continue to take the bus to work except on days when I can't for whatever reason. High gas prices will do wonders for the alternative energy brainstorming. Not to mention the fact that I absolutely love to call someone an asshole who is speeding down the road in a Hummer, only to slam on the breaks at the red light which they could clearly have seen for half a mile before they decided to break. Have fun filling that fucker up.

Some people are stupid. Do I need to create a new label for this post? It already overlaps several. Of course if I did add a new label, I'd have to go back and apply it to the post I did this morning. But I'm not lazy. OK, "fuel" it is.

Look! A Vinyl LP!

Liz Phair hit the big four-o today.
I still can't exactly figure her out. Lots of people love her; lots of people hate her. I have two CDs. I sometimes listen to them when I'm really really drunk.

Pete Shelley is 52
God! I first learned of Pete Shelley in the early 80s when the Buzzcocks were one of my favorite bands. He later struck out with a solo career and I still have a vinyl LP or two of his.
Lots of silly angst. It was more raw and real with the Buzzcocks. IMHO.

The Buzzcocks:

YouTube is pissing me off so no more clips for tonight. Now that I think about it, Blogger is kinda pissing me off too!

Fill 'Er Up... With Fat

Tyson Foods and ConocoPhillips will begin marketing fuel from fat.
The two companies announced Monday that they were forming an alliance to produce and market diesel fuel made from pork, poultry and beef fat. It was another sign that farmers and agribusinesses, which are now producing corn for ethanol, will be playing an increasingly large part in the country’s energy future. The new brew should be available at the neighborhood filling station by the end of the year.

What's a Vegan to do?

Monday, April 16, 2007

Abstinence Is a Virtue, But I Don't Have the Time

I found a pile of these in the men's room at work today, and later a guy was going around passing them out of a box.

Geez, we can't even fuck anymore without thinking about work. Thanks!

The Look of Love

Mary Isabel Catherine Bernadette O'Brien is 68 today.

You may know her as Dusty.

Henry Mancini was born on this day in 1924.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

This Is My Kind of Party

Elizabeth Mae "Bessie" Smith was born on this day in.... get ready for it:

Pour me one!

Tax Time for Clowns

Tally up all those receipts for balloons. That's right, folks. Clowns get a balloon deduction if they are used to pry money from the fingers of children.

The IRS. They think of everything, don't they?

Crossposted at B3

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Video From Kona Ranch

The collard blossoms have certainly changed from last week so I ran out on this very windy and cool afternoon (it's 55 even though a high of 70 was forecast) and got a few seconds of video. Sweet Pea managed to sneak in some cat blogging at the end of the clip.

Hmmm, I'm wondering what I'll be having for dinner tonight....

On a side note, I originally uploaded this clip to Photobucket and when I put it on my blog and try to play, I got an "OOPS, No video available" message. That also happened the last time I used Photobucket. Anyone else use Photobucket for video and have a solution for this problem?

Maybe I Should Stop Taking Quizzes

You scored as Martin Heidegger. You are Martin Heidegger. You are a very wordy person that believes we classify objects by their function, and that community is essential. Once we are in a community, then it is possible for us to differentiate ourselves. You also might have sympathetic feelings towards Nazis.

Martin Heidegger


Friedrich Nietzsche


Jean-Paul Sartre


Albert Camus


Soren Kierkegaard


Not An Existentialist


Which Existentialist Philosopher Are You?
created with

Or perhaps I should refuse to answer questions if I don't fully understand their meaning.

I decided to conduct further research. Hmmm, maybe there are some similarities.

Philosophers are divided in their opinion of Heidegger: some regard him as the greatest philosopher of the twentieth century, while others view his writing as bombastic nonsense.

Via RPM, a fine blogger here in my own environs.

Pickle Post

txrad and I are pickle fanatics. We were delighted to find these luscious gems at a nearby supermarket. We don't buy food products with artificial ingredients or artificial colors, and we like to keep preservatives to a minimum unless they are natural.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

I will rant endlessly about the American infatuation for aesthetics over substance when it comes to food presentation -- especially if it involves artificial colors to make something more pleasing to the eye.

These Gundelsheim barrel pickles are a product of Germany and contain only gherkins, vinegar, sugar, spices, salt, and natural flavors. Yum, yum!

Loretta and Jack

Loretta Lynn is 72.
Probably one of the oddest musical pairings I've seen in awhile and it works. The CD is great.

An older classic.... Happy Birthday Loretta!

Friday, April 13, 2007

Friday Pussy Blog

Sissy relaxing in HER chair. Notice the hairy paws.
Hairy EVERYthing to be honest.

Samantha getting some rare Daddy Love from Daddy #2.
It's quite obvious she really loves the photographer.

Feline-friendly Elizabeth sent in this shot of Lily and Georgie sharing some personal space.

This bed ain't big enough for both of us!

Off to the Real Office

I'm feeling better... and it's Friday. Pussy blog will be up late this afternoon or early evening.

UPDATE: Interesting. I left work at 12:15 Monday afternoon and didn't go back into the office until 12:35 today, and I still got in my 40 hours this week. Fascinating. I love technology.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Congratulations! It's a 7 lb. 6 oz. Snot Baby

I went to bed about 9:30 last night and actually slept quite well until 1:27am this morning when I felt my nostrils filling with warm goo. I probably woke the entire neighborhood with my nose blowing episode.

This experience has perhaps been comparable to a woman giving birth (obviously I'm speculating), only I've been in labor all week. I just hope I'm not going to blow out twins.

Why is pollen such a bitch?

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

A Lizard in My Pants

This was a strange way to end the afternoon. I walked outside and Sweet Pea was strolling down the path toward the patio with a lizard in his mouth. This is not uncommon on warmer days. I've rescued countless numbers of reptiles over the years.

I coaxed the lizard from his mouth and it hid under some leaves near a rock where I was standing. Sweet Pea isn't easily distracted at such times so I tried to lure him away. No luck. I went back to see if I could find the lizard and catch it so I could move it elsewhere. I heard it rustling through the leaves near my foot but I didn't see it.

As I backed away I felt something slightly scratchy in the leg of my pants. We have all kinds of scratchy grasses and weeds but I couldn't figure out how something like that could be nearly up to my knee in my jeans. I felt a lump and suspected it might be the lizard. I was correct. I had to drop my pants to retrieve it.

This was about the time txrad was coming home from work. I was having some difficulty holding a lizard with one hand and trying to button my jeans with one hand. It might have been awkward to try and explain to him why I was standing in the yard with my pants around my ankles holding a lizard.

I am indeed living in strange days.

It' snot fun

But thank God for technology so I can at least get in 6 or 7 hours of work at home. This allergy is making me mega-irritable. I finally took a shower this afternoon around 5:00 -- my first since 6:00 Monday morning. I was beginning to look rather unkempt. And considering how many times I turned my head to sneeze this week and blew snot into my hair, it was getting to be essential that I shower.

I went to the bed at 1:00 this afternoon to rest for a few minutes and almost immediately fell asleep and didn't wake up until almost 3:00. That certainly cut into any hope for a productive afternoon.

I had the weirdest dream. I was on some open-air transport vehicle which could travel over land and water. I was in an undeveloped foreign country with very rugged terrain and beautiful bodies of blue water. The driver of this vehicle was taking a group of us to some village and rather than take the road which would have required hours of travel time he took us over extremely rocky terrain -- a path rather than a road. It was very jarring. And then we treaded shallow water which was also very rocky beneath the water. Finally we entered a pristine body of water which stretched to the horizon on the way to our destination. Total travel time would have been about two hours but I woke up before we got to shore.

I really wanted to know where I was and where I was going. It seemed like a place I'd enjoy visiting.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Icky Sicky

I am home again today feeling rather contaminated. This started on Sunday morning when I woke up and realized my lungs felt like I'd smoked 4 packs of cigarettes the night before. I was really lethargic all day. Then Monday rolled around and it was clear this wasn't going to be a 24-hour ordeal. I did go to work despite feeling like hell. My head felt like it was being squeezed with a vise. My energy level was much too low to deal with an office environment and I was getting irritable -- something that's not unusual when I don't feel well.

I left there and came home about 12:15 with the intention of taking a nap. I decided to try and finish up some things I'd wanted to complete over the weekend. I got Turbo Tax loaded and have the tax returns ready to submit. I also called the credit union to have them reset my online password but they said I'd have to come in to a branch to do that. The last thing I wanted was to drive out again but I did. At least I have two less things to stress about.

I suspect pollen might be a culprit. There was a thick yellow coat of it on the car last Friday. Then we plunged into the low 30s on Saturday and remained there until late morning on Sunday. The forecast today had been for 80 degrees. I have my doubts. It's still cloudy and 55. I need warm sunshine. And I need it NOW.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Fifty Questions (including one which makes no sense)

I stumbled across this one over at Kelly's spot this weekend and I was in a meme mood, so I snatched it.

50 Questions

1. How tall are you barefoot?
About 6'1"

2. Have you ever smoked heroin?

3. Do you own a gun?
Never have... except a BB gun.

4. Who's your best friend?
Aside from my cats, I'd have to say txrad.

5. Do you get nervous before "meeting the parents"?
A little bit. We hadn't been together very long when I met txrad's family. They're very nice and it was a pleasurable experience.

6. What music are you embarrassed to admit that you listen to?
I'm really not embarrassed to listen to any music I enjoy. And there are things I love in every genre. I'm really not into that mega-pop superstar crap. Britney Spears comes to mind. I'm not saying they are talentless; far from it. I just think it's misdirected talent. I used to cringe because some of these people would probably knock me for a loop if they ever just sat down on a stool, stopped prancing around in expensive outfits and dumped the light shows and pyrotechnics, and just... SANG. It's too much "show" at the expense of the music. I used to lump Christina Aguilera into that category and I never in my wildest dreams ever thought I'd like anything she did until she came out with "Back to Basics." I don't own it but I do like listening to it. But I'm more surprised than embarrassed.

7. What's your favourite Christmas song?
I don't celebrate Christmas and I tend to despise those songs. But I do like hearing Fiona Apple do "Frosty the Snowman."

8. What do you prefer to drink in the morning?

9. Can you do push-ups?
Do I have to?

10. Why does one question always disappear?
"What the fuck is that supposed to mean?" That's what Kelly said. I can't think of a better answer.

11. What's your favorite piece of jewelry?
It used to be an earring made by a friend of mine. I'm quite sure it went down the drain in a Vegas hotel some years back. I like pretty much anything made of sterling silver.

12. Do you like painkillers?
No. I relish pain. Actually I take aspirin when I need them. That's about as far as I go with painkillers.

13. What is your secret weapon to lure in the opposite sex?
Acting gay.

14. Do you own a knife?
My favorite is my chef's knife. I have a pocket knife or two somewhere.

15. Do you have A.D.D.?
Only when I drink too much tequila.

16. Middle Name?

17. Name 3 thoughts at this exact moment?
I'm sick of winter. I'm hungry. I'm anxious.

18. Name the last 3 things you have bought:
tequila, tequila, tequila.

19. Name 3 drinks you regularly drink:
coffee, water, beer

20. What time did you wake up today?
Wake up or get up? I think I woke up at 4:00. I got up about 5:10.

22. Current worry?
finances and having to take my company down the road to bankruptcy.

23. Current hate?
being cold.

24. Favourite place to be?
In my kitchen.

25. Least favourite place to be?
Probably standing in a long line at the post office. I got a postage meter to avoid that agony.

26. Where would you like to go?
Ireland and Norway.

27. Do you own slippers?
No. Birkenstocks probably don't count.

28. What shirt are you wearing?
a Dickies long-sleeve.

29. Do you burn or tan?
I would burn if I wasn't careful.

30. Favorite colour(s)?
yellow and purple

31. Would you be a pirate?
Preferably not.

32. Last time you had an alcoholic drink?
Last night. (Hell, that's better than saying this morning, isn't it?)

33. What songs do you sing in the shower?
I don't sing in the shower but I often have songs in my head. Sometimes I make the songs up in my head in the shower.

34. What did you fear was going to get you at night as a child?
Dolls that talk when you pull those strings on their backs.

35. What's in your pockets right now?
Nothing except a hole.

36. Last thing that made you laugh?
Watching Doris Day in That Touch of Mink.

37. Best bed sheets you had as a child?
Any that I didn't pee on. What a stupid question.

38. Worst injury you've ever had?
Probably getting hit by a car that was pulling out into the street. I was on a bicycle and went head over heels. I got up and had someone come fetch me and we went to a coffee shop like nothing had happened. Then about 2 hours later I had to go to the hospital to be checked out. I could barely move for the next two days.

40. How many TVs do you have in your house?
Three, but only one gets used.

41. Who is your loudest friend?
I'm not saying because she reads this blog.

42. Who is your most silent friend?
I don't seem to attract silent people.

43. Does someone have a crush on you?
I'm not aware of anyone.

44. Do you wish on shooting stars?
I have in the past but I don't see them very often. I doubt I'd make a wish.

45. What is your favourite book?
World Almanac & Book of Facts.

46. What is your favorite candy?
I'm not a big candy fanatic. I never complain when someone sends me Godiva.

47. What song do you want played at your wedding?
Assuming I ever get to have a wedding in the state where I reside, I think I'd want to pick something with an emotional kick.

48. What song do you want played at your funeral?
I'd like to put together a compilation to be played if someone wants to do a memorial service. I don't want a funeral. The compilation would probably contain a variety of music that ties together nicely and summarizes my life. Or I could take the somber route and just do a bunch of tearjerkers. HA!

49. What were you doing at 12 AM last night?

50. What was the first thing you thought of when you woke up this morning?
Will I be able to sleep another hour without taking a pee?

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Fine and Mellow

Eleanora Fagan Gough was born on April 7, 1915.

Lakshminarayana Shankar was 87 yesterday. We had the pleasure of seeing Ravi perform in London back around 1994 at the Royal Albert Hall. It was just a fluke. We were on the bus and passed the venue and saw that he was performing that night so we got tickets. I am such a Pavlov's dog. When I hear sitar I immediately begin salivating for a big dark Punjabi to pull some hot naan from his tandoor.

On April 7, 1988 Plasmatics singer Wendy O. Williams -- possibly the most abrasive voice in rock history -- killed herself near her home in Connecticut. I remember seeing this clip when it was originallly broadcast. I also saw the Plasmatics perform in... Pine Bluff, Arkansas of all places. They opened for KISS. I was such a young fool... I left after the Plasmatics' gig. I'll always wonder what I missed.

From the Garden

The collard greens are starting to produce tiny yellow flowers. Hopefully we'll get some free seeds for the fall crop. Meanwhile I should probably do another harvest and get more in the freezer. This never seems to end and for that I am thankful.

The roses at the garden fence are putting on quite a show. I think this one was called "Joseph's Coat" if I recall.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Speaking of the Weather...

Climate change won't be pretty for tens of millions living in coastal regions.

A scientific panel released a 1,572-page report yesterday and it is alarming, although not surprising.
In its most detailed portrait of the effects of climate change driven by human activities, the panel predicted widening droughts in southern Europe and the Middle East, sub-Saharan Africa, the American Southwest and Mexico, and flooding that could imperil low-lying islands and the crowded river deltas of southern Asia. It stressed that many of the regions facing the greatest risks were among the world’s poorest.


“It’s the poorest of the poor in the world, and this includes poor people even in prosperous societies, who are going to be the worst hit,” said Rajendra K. Pachauri, the chairman of the panel. “People who are poor are least-equipped to be able to adapt to the impacts of climate change, and therefore in some sense this does become a global responsibility in my view.”

What's really inexcusable and pathetic is that we've known about this for years. Too few people are taking it seriously and I have my doubts whether the steps to reverse the trend, or even slow it down, will be implemented in a timely manner. We'll all pay dearly for our thoughtless excesses. The ones who will pay the most are the ones least responsible. Isn't that just typical?

By Austin Standards, This Is Winter

What the f**k?

What happened to April? We've had several days in the mid-80s and now we're having rain and it's in the mid-30s and I'm concerned it could possibly freeze tonight. At least I'm not missing anything by staying in the house today and doing some work, and hopefully some cleaning.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Friday Pussy Blog

Since I have the day off I decided to spend a little extra time and put together all five of the kids in one strip. From top to bottom: Samantha, Sissy, Sweet Pea, Tiger and Tater Tot.

Felons Will Vote in Florida

And it's about damn time. Kentucky and Virginia need to get on board this train and restore a basic right to people who have paid their debt to society.

Florida has as many as 950,000 disenfranchised ex-offenders — far more than any other state — the vast majority black. Other states have repealed or scaled back similar bans in recent years, but roughly five million felons remain barred from the polls nationwide.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Thursday, April 05, 2007

A Damn Good Friday Cometh

I have already logged in way over 40 hours this week and I have more work to do tomorrow. The good news is that we're closed for Good Friday. I brought the company laptop home and will be working from my abode tomorrow.

Plus I can take breaks and blog. Damn, I can't complain about that. It'll be like old times. Maybe I'll even get the pussy blog done before noon.

Meanwhile, tonight is like a Friday night....and that means tequila, pizza, and music. Let's see, what can I find to entertain us.....

After someone pointed out to me that my Melissa Etheridge birthday post was off by about a month made me question the site where I gather this data. Also I just did a birthday tribute for Stan Ridgway or Ridgeway (the same site list both dates with each spelling) last weekend, and now he's showing up again in the list as having a birthday today.

So let's just stay away from all that and do something spontaneous. Brandi Carlile is one of my favorite new artists. We saw her last year at the Parish in downtown Austin and it was a phenomenal show (I did a blog post about it) and she's playing there again a week from yesterday. She lives in Seattle but she fits right in here in Austin, and needless to say, the lesbian contingent really turns out for her!

I need to be there again next week. She makes me feel alive. And whatever it costs is worth it just for the lesbian factor. The music becomes a fringe benefit of phenomenal value.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Scent of a Man

After taking the bus to work for two months, and seeing some of the regulars who board the same bus at the same time daily, I have this observation:

If I were suddenly struck with blindness, there are a couple of people I could still identify when they board the bus based on their scent.

Some folks need to tone down the cologne & perfume. There's nothing at all wrong with not smelling like anything.

Blues & Pixies

Muddy Waters was born (according to my source) on this day in 1915.

Black Francis is 42. Only 42. Vamos!

Time for a tequila shot!

The Spawn Of Satan Speaks

What a fuckwad.
"It's a tough war," Bush said. "The American people are weary of this war. They're wondering whether or not we can succeed. They're horrified by the suicide bombing they see."

Let me correct the Commander-in-Chief. I'm not wondering a fucking thing, asshole. I've been quite clear in my beliefs since February, 2003 at least. And I'm horrified by YOUR administration, your actions, your disregard for your so-called "culture of life" and I'm gravely concerned about your ulterior motives.

I have no confusion in that regard.
"It makes me realize the nature of the enemy we face, which hardens my resolve to protect the American people," Bush said. "People who do that are not — it's not a civil war, it is pure evil. And I believe we have an obligation to protect ourselves from that evil."

It takes one to know one.

What an ASS!

Photo Credit:  REUTERS/Jason Reed

Kind of makes me wonder what's so fucking funny.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

The $20 Million Dollar Man Bigot

Jesus Christ would be appalled.

Although Mr. Romney’s membership in the Mormon Church has often been discussed as a potential political liability, he has taken deliberate steps to turn his affiliation with the church into a fund-raising asset. He has tapped wealthy Mormons including the Marriott family, founders of the hotel chain, and Jon M. Huntsman Sr., who made a fortune in plastics packaging.

Don't stay at any Marriott hotels. Screw them. This is giving me indigestion. And let's stop using plastic products. Do we see the fucking connections yet?

Romney has taken a lot of "deliberate" steps, all bad. I hope money doesn't translate into votes (there's your opening for a free-for-all discussion).

Love and Hate

There are aspects of my life I love and aspects I hate.

I have emailed a lawyer about the aspects I hate.

I'm going to focus on the aspects I love, until I hear from the lawyer.

Life goes in strange directions. Sometimes I feel lost. Disorientation is good.

Am I happy tonight? Not really. But the week is half over because we have Friday off.

Tomorrow I predict a slight improvement in mood, followed by a substantial improvement on Thursday.

Friday's mood remains to be seen. That's the best forecast I can provide for the week at this point. I can assure you it's more predictable than the weather.

Tequila will be a player.

Whoa... Slow Down On the Birthdays, Folks!

Melissa Etheridge is 46.

Richard Thompson is 58.
Here he is at Austin City Limits.

Billy Joe Royal is 65.
"Down in the Boondocks." I had this on a 45 r.p.m. vinyl way back when. How old does that make me? Fuck, don't answer that.

Doris Day is 83.
Thank you dear, for being my occasional involuntary sockpuppet.

Leon Russell turned 66 yesterday.

Emmylou Harris turned 60 yesterday.
I saved the best for last. I heard on the radio at 6:35 yesterday morning that it was Emmylou's birthday and I said to txrad, "Minstrel Boy is going to be happy with my post." Only I didn't get it up yesterday.

Monday, April 02, 2007

A Shitty Job Takes On a Whole New Meaning

It's been interesting at work lately. On Friday the mailroom on the 1st floor had a sewage leak from the 2nd floor toilets. They got it cleaned up. Then today it started again, only worse.

Thank God I don't work in the mailroom. But being on the 3rd floor I could still smell it.

Would I make more money cleaning septic tanks? You gotta wonder. And contemplate.

I spent my whole day stressing about whether someone was going to flick their Bic just before going out on the 2nd floor smoking deck, and then we'd have a potential explosion that would make the news.

Oh, and stressing about the fact that I had to go evacuate my bowels and wondering whether it was all going to wind up on the floor of the mailroom just to complicate the situation.

My God, life is strange sometimes. Just call it Talosian Revenge.

Shakes Has New Digs

The times, they are a changin'.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Expensive Outdoor Patio Chairs Are For Humans


Spring Cleaning for an April Fool

I was sitting here today trying to do some work but preferring to upload CDs to my Zen player and realized perhaps I needed to change some things in order to change my attitude. I've been in a real funk with my home office situation for quite some time.

Hopefully this change will bring about some fresh positive karma. My desk had been in the same position for years, probably through three jobs. I had the same work space when txrad and I were working for someone else out of our home -- that company went bankrupt and we lost our jobs. We had our own company in the same space for 2 1/2 years and I'll be having to visit with a lawyer soon to discuss bankruptcy for that one also. Needless to say, the space and the familiarity of it was really starting to get me down.

The desk used to be positioned where I was facing the window. There was a small filing cabinet on the right side of the desk and a wall of shelves to my right which are now behind me, and with quite a bit of available space there now.

Previously, due to the desk being so wide, it was quite cramped trying to access the stuff on the shelves nearest the windows. It was basically dead space. Not good feng shui.

I was also motivated to vacuum and rid the area of cat hair -- there was a LOT of it. And the really fun part: untangling all the cables from the two computers, fax, stereo, and phones. What I thought would be a 30-minute desk move turned into a 3 hour ordeal. I ended up having to unplug almost everything in order to untangle the mess. Don't you ever wonder how cables and wires always seem to tie themselves into knots when in close proximity? It's maddening.

But I'm done now. I feel organized again. Hopefully my mood will improve now. Next weekend I may start on cleaning the shelves.

Quote of the Day

"No one has the right to ever question my gender. Not you, not my doctor, not my friends, not my parents, not anyone."
Kelly speaks. And clearly. Be sure to check out the "Male Privilege Checklist."

This should be required reading for all members of Congress. And like Kelly, I'm still astounded that the Equal Rights Amendment was never ratified. Not only is that an embarrassment for our country, but it says one hell of a lot about where we are today with other equality issues.

Turban of the Week

Photo credit: AP/AMAN SHARMA

Caption: Sikh warrior Major Singh boasts a turban 467 yards long at a March festival near Chandigarh, India.

I can't help but wonder what that weighs.


Since 1699, about two centuries after the founding of the religion, Sikh leaders have prohibited their members from cutting their hair, saying long hair is a symbol of Sikh pride. The turban was conceived to manage the long hair and intended to make Sikhs easily identifiable in a crowd.

Clearly, Major Singh has that aspect covered.

I've Got Weeds That Need Eatin'

Mercy. Come on down. It's a beautiful day for weedeating.

April Is Here!

This should take you back a few years.

Angus Young turned 48 yesterday.

Stan Ridgway is 52.
I saw Wall of Voodoo at a small club in Little Rock way back when. Being a young punk wannabe I thought it would be funny to pelt the stage with safety pins. I hit Stan in the face with one. Sorry dude. Didn't mean to.
Wikipedia lists his birthday as April 5, 1954 which would make him 53. My usual source says April 1, 1955. Whatever.

Marvin Gaye was shot to death on this day in 1984 by his father.