Sunday, April 27

Tiger Feet

The first record bought for me, at the tender age of 3, was this absolute monstrosity by the band Mud (I guess Shit was already taken).

WARNING: Terrible segue coming up.

Today, at a spa in New Hampshire, I was once again disappointed by Mud.

For her birthday last year, I got Anne a mud wrap treatment and she hated it. She likened it to wearing a massive diaper, and then being hosed down like a concentration camp victim.

Now. Diff'rent strokes, for diff'rent folks. To me this sounded like fun, so I was disappointed when I saw the mud room at the spa today. I was asked to lay down on what can only be described as a human size piece of tin foil. I was caked in the volcanic mud and then wrapped up and left to set for 20 minutes.

After a shower (the best part thanks to the numerous additional jets), I was lathered in Arnica lotion. I guess it was OK, but the adult diaper would have been far better than the awkward dance-of-the-towels the masseur did to maintain my modesty. Think I'll go for the hot stoning next time.

Saturday, April 26

!!! Danger !!! with added exclamation

Anne and I went to New Hampshire this weekend to celebrate 12 years of wonderful marriage. Rewind to Christmas of last year, and Anne's gift to me was a zip-line trip. I guess the few times it has featured on Amazing Race I've always said it looks like fun. So this weekend we found out.

At base camp, they deck you out in helmet, ropes and carabiner. "Eye of the Tiger" plays as you check all of your kit. It's vaguely ridiculous but at least it helps deflect any nervous tension filling the room. I struggled to get the helmet on my over-sized head, and I regretted wearing the jeans with the torn crotch once the metal loop started clunking around down there. We are reminded several times to remove clunky objects from our pockets - because if you hit a tree it will add to your injury. Great! They also ask you to fasten your shoes real tight. WTF? Are we being hit by a truck?

All of the guides are your typical super-rad 20 somethings. They snowboard in the winter and zipline in the summer. We all aboard the less than ripped minibus that will take us to the action packed mountain. We then get on some crazy 6-wheel-drive army truck that drags us bumpily (my made up word of the day) and dustily up the mountain.

Then, after a quick set of do's and don'ts (mostly don'ts), we are off. The harness sits pretty snuggly between the legs - not a great feeling for the fellas, but by now I'm thinking I'd rather be neutered than killed by a long fall.

There were 4 other people in our group. The 2 people from Newburyport seemed like swingers to me, but I say that about everyone from there.

The intrepid Anne went first followed by me ...

Friday, April 25

One Piece at a Time

I've had my Saab 4 years.

This thing drives like a dream. It's fast out of the blocks and handles well during the few occasions (per day) that I speed on the highway.

However, the build of the car is an utter disaster. A list of things that have broken or fallen off. Air Vent, Cup Holder (twice), Hood Release, Key Fob, Security Alarm, The Saab Emblem on the Hood and The Saab Emblem on the Trunk, The Lining around the Auto Gearbox, the Carpet Lining in the Trunk, Floor mats, the Ashtray.

And today the tiny piece of plastic that controls the Treble level on the stereo came off in my hand.

I think it was Renegade Soundwave who sang that "Women Respond to Bass". On that assessment, perhaps "Men Respond to Treble", but come on, I've maybe adjusted the treble level 10 times in 4 years.

I might keep the car for a few more years, so should I get these cosmetic items fixed? I don't really need a plastic treble knob (terrible name for a dildo by the way), an ashtray or a cup holder, but it's embarrassing when people ride in my car.

I've also had a rattle in the back for a month or two. I took it in on April 1st, and maybe they thought it was a prank, but they couldn't find anything. I'm going in again this week, maybe they'll throw in a complimentary cup holder ...

Thursday, April 24


Got stuck behind this guy today. I'd like to think buying a Nissan was somehow therapeutic for him.

Monday, April 21

Against my better judgement

Re-telling dreams never works. Here goes.

Last night I dreamt that I was interviewing John Paul II. Turns out he did not die, instead he retired and moved to Memphis to be a charter pilot. (He only flies 4 seaters).

I spoke to him while we sat outside a hotel. The hotel had a crappy theme bar with lots of kids running around while their parents drank booze inside. He answered questions on retiring, switching the big Pope hat for his pilot goggles, and how people tend to leave him alone in Tennessee and let him get on with his life. He also thanked me for asking thoughtful questions.

I am not any of the following;
Catholic, an aviation fan, a Memphis lover (Elvis excepted), a good interviewer, a frequenter of bars with a 'children welcome' policy.

Towards the end of the chat, Meryl Streep walked out of the hotel and reminded me that when you stay in a hotel, it is best to stay on the First Floor because, "You get a room with a taller ceiling".

Thanks Meryl.

Sunday, April 20

New Fave Snack

The boffins at Quaker caught my eye this weekend with this wonderful delight.

Oatmeal to Go (thanks for abstaining from using an exclamation point) is the brand; Raspberry Streusel is the flavor.

Now, I had an idea what Streusel meant, but I looked it up anyway. In German it means "something scattered or sprinkled".

Damn these things are good. Obviously there's an absence of actual raspberries, otherwise I would currently be vomiting. There's lots of High fructose corn syrup, which somewhat like butter and MSG is bad for you but makes things tasty.

Apparently you can nuke these things for 10 seconds and enjoy them hot. However, much like Pop Tarts, I have neither the time nor inclination to wait that long.

Tuesday, April 15

Battle Royale

Ever noticed when you visit someone in another part of the country, they always champion their own burger joint?

Blah blah blah. Let's settle this once and for all by demolishing the shitty food court of a depressing suburban mall, and replacing it with one of each of the following.

OK, so I'm joking about Jack in the Box.

Actually I've only been to J-in-the-B once, and that was in the City of Yuma (of 3:10 to fame). As you would expect it was as hot as hell, and I was served by a young Latina whose name began with an X. It might have been Xanathadol or Xylitol, but I think the second one is a type of sugar?

I digress. Burger election! Let democracy reign.

Saturday, April 5

Par conséquent ...

In the movie Paris, je t'aime, I enjoyed the short part directed by Alexander Payne. Starring Margo Martindale as a lonely American tourist visiting Paris, 14ème Arrondissement contains a voice over using basic French familiar to anyone who learned French as a second language at school. It's surprising how much you can understand/remember.

My friend Didier lives in Paris and frequently sends me little notes regarding this blog. He's a Frenchman, yet his command of English is usually better than mine! Inspired by the movie and by DQ's e-mails, I present a recap of this (and every other) week in schoolbook French.

Comme d'habitude, mon semaine commence avec cafe au Starbucks. Maintenant ... ils font le bon produit ... mais ... le café-restaurant est habité par des idiots. Je roule mes yeux.

Où j'habite, sur ma rue (c'est un cul de sac), les voitures sont garées inexactement. Par conséquent je suis fâché.

Dans la maison, Isobelle est malade. Par conséquent, nous sommes allés chez le vétérinaire. Ne vous inquiétez pas, elle est très bien.

J'apprécie mon travail ... mais ... mes clients sont une douleur le derrière.

Dans son email, Didier fait l'amusement de mon amour des chansons de Wham! "Réveillez-moi, avant que vous alliez alliez". Homme français grossier!

Enfin, Mon épouse Anne, démontre la patience d'un ange. Elle est merveilleuse, la jolie américaine.

Apologies to all French speakers.

Friday, April 4


Back in the day these things cost 10 pence of your old fashioned English money. I could get one on the way to school and still have enough money for a school lunch.

25 years later and Wham don't cost 10p (20¢) anymore.

The Mrs talked me into going to see George Michael this summer. I guess I do "Everything She Wants".

Tickets: $167 each!!!!!

Screw "I'm never gonna dance again", for this much cash I expect a complimentary dancing monkey, dressed in a George Michael windbreaker.

Also, how many times do Ticketmaster have to rape me with the convenience charge before I go to the police?

Thursday, April 3

Spoiling it for Everyone

Parking is tight in our little old cul-de-sac. We have 6 spaces. Except when the gray car driver parks slap bang in the middle of 2 spaces, thus removing 16.66% of our on-street parking. You'd just about fit a Smart Car in the white space indicated on this picture.

The car on the far right didn't help matters by parking close behind the gray one, leaving half a space directly behind. I would have parked at the end of the street thus passive aggressively showcasing the terrible park job by the gray car ... but that's me.