Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Oakland Dishcrawl

Dishcrawl is a new startup.  Instead of bar-crawling, you go from restaurant to restaurant tasting great food.

We did it.  Annie and I went to the one in Oakland a few weeks back.  We started off by exploring some new condominiums in downtown Oakland (and were rewarded with cupcakes from my local fave, James & the Giant Cupcake).  The condos also had sushi and tacos from local restaurants, as well as free wine and beer.

We had art.  This Dishcrawl was on the same day as the monthly art shows that line up on Fridays (called Art Walk or something like that).  So, we added a few of those to our route.  Below are some of my favorite things.  We also bought a series of magnets from a local artist that had a cool African vibe with rhythm lines.

This reminded me of a friend's tumblr.

So cool... and sexy.  (3 separate canvasses).
We had food.  I found my new favorite burger/food truck.  fiveten Burger has some bomb-ass garlic oil fries, and even though our burgers weren't super fresh (since they cooked for 100 people or so), they were still really good.  Annie caught them a few days later and confirmed they're her new favorite burger.  Plus, Roland follows me on Twitter, so he's a cool guy.  We also got to try an Oakland staple:  Tina Tamale.  They are really good (but honestly, the burgers won that night).

We had fun.  We made some new friends.  We got invited to someone's cupcake party (but we were out of town for the Royal Wedding).  And I got to sneak peaks at some cute lesbians all night.  All in all, you should check out Dishcrawl if it comes near you.

Yes, that is a blurry CreepShot of a couple of lipstick lesbians,

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

NaNoWriMo & Recent Books

I'm a lover and avid reader of Fantasy Fiction.  Something about magic really does it for me.  I think part of it has to do with breaking the rules of physics that have been ingrained in me since high school.  Another part is just how unlike this world the stories end up becoming.  It's a little mind vacation for one who used to be so imaginative (I'm referring to me, ask my childhood collection of stuffed animals).  It's an Aquarius thing, I've heard.  But I've also heard I'm not an Aquarius anymore.

Anyway, I've been getting back into reading since leaving UCLA.  And my priorities are the opposite of non-fiction.

Last week I finished The Wise Man's Fear:  Day 2 of the Kingkiller Chronicles by Patrick Rothfuss.

This is the second book in Rothfuss' new series.  It's fun, in a kind of continuously-sidetracked fashion.  At the end of two 1000-page books, I don't feel like we've gotten very far.  You're stuck wondering if this person really is who he says he is ('cuz every time they take a break from telling the story, he looks less and less like the person he talks about).  All you want him to do is tap into all of the power that he claims to have (like Taborlin the Great) and start whipping the shit out of people.  At least I'm totally fascinated by Elodin.  He's such an interesting character.  If this kid's story isn't done by the end of the 3rd day (as we were initially promised), I'm not sure I'll read many more.

Last night I finished Storm Front:  Book One of The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher.

This was a ridiculously fast read.  It wasn't very deep.  It was just a fun story combining an openly practicing wizard (who typically helps with crime investigations and finding lost things) with the real world.  Not great literary value, but it was like watching a movie.  There was one great scene where a nearby girl accidentally takes a love potion in the middle of a big fight scene between the naked wizard and a demon, making for extreme awkwardness.

Tonight, I'll start The Magician King (Sequel to The Magicians) by Lev Grossman.

The Magicians was one of my favorite books in the past year.  Maybe longer.  Annie and I got to see Lev at a panel discussing the attempt at making fantasy fiction worthwhile literature.  I think he succeeded.  It explores what it would really be like to learn magic at a magical school, but with real death (death never felt very real in Harry Potter) and accidents and tedious memorization and sex and heart-wrenching relationships.  It also breaks down the awe-inspiring magic that we all saw in Narnia as children.

Why am I reading so much?  The same reason I've been blogging so much.  I'm going to attempt to start writing stories.  I heard from somewhere recently that Stephen King claimed that a good author has to read 4 hours a day and write 4 hours a day.  I'm in no way that dedicated.  Nor do I consider myself a good writer. I do, however, find myself analyzing things like how characters are introduced now.  I also think that my blog has been great practice at creative dumps and writing regularly.

So, when Annie showed me the NaNoWriMo challenge, I accepted it.  For the month of November, I will attempt to start and finish a 50,000 word novel.  Or just a story.  Not sure the fine line between them is very distinct.  That's almost 2,000 words a day.  Needless to say, my writing will be devoted to the story for the entire month of November, and my blog will be skimpy, if existent at all.

Early next month, I'll reach 20,000 pageviews of this blog.  Though I still have much to work on, I feel like that's enough to say that there is sufficient interest in hearing the way I tell stories.  I've also had a story in my head that I've wanted to start developing, so there is no more perfect time.  It's likely I'll fail, but maybe I'll actually get a jump on my 30 by 30, or on being less jealous of this chick.

So, thank you for all of your support so far.  I'll start apologizing for my November absence now.  At least I've given you fair warning.  When I start putting up whiny, agitated, mind-numb statuses on facebook and twitter throughout November, your kind words of support will be thoroughly appreciated.

I hope this doesn't flop as badly as the last time Annie and I tried to co-author a book,

Acura for Trekkies

Do all Star Trek fans drive Acuras?
I'm neither (except the most recent film with Chris Pine was kinda awesome), but I was surprised that I had never noticed the similarities in their symbols until I was driving (very closely) behind an Acura last week.

I mean, it's obvious that they are both As.  Maybe that's their only similarity.  Maybe I'm crazy.  They don't look that similar now that they're next to each other.  However, I think Acura is feeding off of the Trekkie subconscious.

It's not just me, right?

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Modern Family

Last night, Modern Family returned to TV with its season premier.  For those unawares, Modern Family has to be one of the most well-written shows on TV.  At least, as far as witty comedy is concerned.

In a moment of pure brilliance, our third roommate walked into the kitchen and notified Annie and I (in the midst of yelling at each other) that we were a perfect combination of the entire cast of Modern Family.

Claire and Phil are obvious.  Annie is the crazy, bossy, nutjob-wife.  I'm the tries-too-hard-and-fails, cool dad.

Also obvious:  two people obsessed with Broadway musicals that 'coddle' their child.  I think physique and history (football player from what Annie refers to as a 'farm town') makes me Cam.  Annie is the one who would love a Lavender tour and can't stand bugs (Mitchell), and Angel's our little, adopted, Vietnamese daughter (or male Australian Shepherd).

The last one was truly brilliant.  I turned to our roomie and quipped "Umm.. I'm not old and she's not hot."  She responded with, "Actually, Annie is the old one [true] and you Latin dance, so I was thinking the other way around."  Add in the fact that Annie is our breadwinner and Angel is also a genius, and it's perfect.


No wonder we love Modern Family so much.  The writers have set up secret cameras and bugs in our house, and they're literally writing about our life.  They've just managed to put better faces on it.  The gay couple's an extraordinarily well thought out caricature of us.

Last night's (paraphrased) notable quotable:
"What do you mean the attic is too small.  Grandpa said you lived in a closet growing up."  Little, wonderful, blissfully ignorant Luke to flaming, gay Uncle Mitch.

Good call, ABC.  Good call,

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Halloween Costumes

'round these parts, Halloween is a big deal.  By here, I mean Annie and I.  Not that we're big drag queens looking for the excuse to dress like a chick, get our nails done, put on our Womens' size 14 platforms, and paint the town.  Not that at all... not anymore at least.  That was so middle school / high school / couple of weekends in college...

Anyway, Halloween has been pretty fun since going to college (these photos really need no captions):

Most fitting costume I'll ever wear. Should've said 'Nozzle'.

Obligatory college toga costume.

My eyes are up here.
Yes, I'm in roller skates. (I have a scar.)

And Annie and I have done a pretty good job at couples costumes:

I could only find a pic at a bad part in the night...
At the end of last year, Annie came up with a brilliant idea for this year.  If we pull it off, it'll be quite fucking awesome.  Mostly because I look so much like the male-role in a famous cartoon couple.  I'll leave your mind to wander until I announce what we chose with pictures in early November.

The problem?  We've got high expectations.  You've got high expectations.  Wherever we go will have high expectations.  We've been trying to land the role as 'that couple' during Halloween festivities over the years, and our performance will have to be stellar.  How are we going to pull this off in the one free weekend we have between now and Halloween?

We've tried to make our costumes or find things at thrift shops that work (more Annie than I).  I think this is the first year where it would be totally possible for me to put my ensemble together without buying the professional costume, it'll just take a lot of work.  And some sewing.  I'm not very familiar with either of these concepts.

I hope we live up to my expectations, and that'll mean that you'll enjoy the costumes,

P.S. Annie would be upset if I didn't tell this story.  Up toward the top you'll see a picture of me in shorty-shorts and roller skates.  While rollin' with my homies around Ann Arbor, some guy at a bar yelled something to the extent of "Dude, that chick's on skates."  This was responded to with "Dude, that chick's a dude."  She hasn't let that drop yet.  Not the first time I was mistaken for a lady.

P.S.S. The first time I was mistaken for a lady:  I literally did dress as a girl for Halloween for a few years in middle school.  The last time was probably 8th grade.  My cousin and I showed up to a lady's porch and yelled "Trick or Treat".  She came out with candy (best holiday ever).  She then went on to ask me what I was supposed to be.  In the deepest voice that I was able to muster at the time, I said, "a girl".  In almost a shriek, she replied, "Dear Jesus!"  I must've been pulling it off quite well.  I got almost two handfuls of confused adults by the time the night was over.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Sing Off Season 3

The Sing Off returned last night, and I'd very much like to discuss it.  This was the premiere of Season 3, and I've watched every episode since the beginning of Season 1.

First off, I love Sara Bareilles.  She's an amazing singer.  I stream her records off her site all the time.  Thinking about spending $40 to see her on December 10th.  Not sure I love her as a judge, though.

I absolutely underestimated Delilah.  I don't really like all-girl a capella.  It sounds too high and shriek-y.  All dudes works, cuz there are low tones to fill it out.  I made this point clear to Annie during the commercial break before they started singing.  Here's their performance:

Needless to say, I ate my words.  They were so good.  The best group of the night, by far.  Not only was their music chill-inducing, but that lead singer is so distractingly beautiful.  I'm already calling them 'my girls'.  Sorry for doubting you.

Afro-Blue is probably my runner-up at the moment.  I'm a big fan of African Americans that sing (hello, neon-glowing white girl).  Especially if there's any hint of some gospel going on in there.  I wish that they slid a little more R&B instead of jazz, but that lead singer's voice was ridiculously smooth.  Last season's champs, Committed, were a great example of the style I love:

Not only were they freaking amazing, but they sang with 3/4 of my favorite band of all time.

The Mormons kind of annoy me.  Cat's Pajamas reeked of old lady pheromones (something I know very much about, and I'm drafting a post on the very topic).  The Fanni-family wasn't very good.  Urban Point's rap-apella was interesting (and a great song choice), I just wish it was more musical.  Kinpoint's lead Johnny Depp impersonator annoys me, too.  Nobody else is worth mentioning.

Paraphrased Notable Quotables from the premiere:
"That bass was shaking my ass." - Ben Folds to Urban Method's low voice
"As much fun as 5 [stuffy, white] guys can have on stage." - Vocal Point (the Mormons)

Can Boyz II Men come back and sing again?  Maybe with Afro-Blue... or even Delilah,

Monday, September 19, 2011

Quarter Machines

Has anyone ever stood in front of a change machine and thought, "I'm definitely going to get every quarter I deserve from the exchange that is about to happen."??

Lord knows I haven't.  I thought it was just me.  That was until I told Annie I was going to get $5 in quarters from the quarter machine at the laundromat across the street.  She was all, "I heard it steals quarters."  What quarter machine doesn't?  Every change machine that I see, I imagine is just a post-it note away from saying 'broken'.  Or more honestly, 'steals your money'.  Have we all had bad experiences, or are change machines truly the electronic equivalent to a lazy, pot-smoking boyfriend?  Or a entrepreneurial teenager.

And I'm still stuck in no-washer-in-my-apartment hell.  I can't wait until the day that quarters aren't worth gold.  When I won't have to trade in dimes and nickels (and pennies, how embarrassing) for quarters at stores and at the bank.  When I can wash my clothes without fear of the washer being busy, not being able to make it back the second the timer goes off and somebody throws my wet clothes everywhere, not having to sit in a sketchy laundromat for hours staring at weirdos, or begging for quarters like a homeless person.

Gotta ♥ laundry day,

Sunday, September 18, 2011

30 by 30 #1-20

I've heard of a few blogs posting lists like this, and I think it's a great idea.  Below I'll list (and check off) 30 things that I would like to do before I'm 30 years old (I'm 26 now).  I don't have great ideas for all 30 yet, so I'll be posting it in increments of 5 as I come up with them.  I'd be happy to hear what you think (you can add comments or Tweet me ideas @roberree #30by30)!

30 by 30
1. Travel outside of the U.S.
2. Read Moby Dick (may be replaced by another classic).
3. Take a singing lesson to find out if there's any hope.
4. Learn how to make crepes.
5. Weigh less than 200 lbs.
6. Get a tattoo (I've had it picked out for a while, but I haven't followed through yet).
7. Live in a house (as opposed to an apartment).
8. Clear all of my credit card debt.
9. Return to graduate school, for the last time, to finally get my PhD.
10. Take Annie to Disney World.
11. Go to a Chicago Bears football game at Soldier Field.
12. Eat at Chez Panisse.
13. Finish writing 5 short stories.
14. Learn how to make mole negro.
15. Attempt Fenton's Banana Split Challenge, if it still exists.
16. Go to a Tennis Major outside of the U.S. (there are 3 others).
17. Eat the spaghetti at Scarpetta (any location would count).
18. Purchase (and use) a road bicycle.
19. Start playing my trumpet again.
20. Run a 5k in under 30 minutes.

Here's to getting the things you always wanted,

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Inappropriate Undies

Apparently, the awkward theme of this week is underwear.

I feel like I could start a whole new blog detailing awkward moments in gym/sports club locker rooms.

Clearly, this prude over at PA Notes hasn't been reading my blog.

As I've mentioned earlier this week, my collection of undies (primarly, but not exclusively, boxers) has been slowly dwindling over the past couple of months.  There has been one addition, though.  While at Walmart earlier this year picking up some random, cheap supplies, I came across some Batman boxers.  Made for men.
From what I can remember of my childhood, I was obsessed with Batman.  I had a Batman cape, a Batman mask, Batman costumes, Batman undies, and a shit-ton of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle stuff.  TMNT is unrelated, but important to not slight them.  I am who I am today because of TMNT.  And the Power Rangers.  I'm getting sidetracked.  The point being that I had to own, and wear, these boxers.

This will all start coming together soon.  When I work out at the gym, I usually take a shower and change clothes before I go home.  Also, like most humans I know, I don't take off my pants and my underwear at the same time.  Sometimes, but not usually.

Anyway, on one particular day, I absentmindedly wore my Batman boxers to work out.  I just grabbed something and put it on.  Skip ahead 90 minutes or so.  I pull off my underwear in a room full of naked, loitering men.

BAM!  Creepy 26-year-old in children's underwear.

I can't find an ideal representation, so you'll have to merge these pictures in your head:

Is it possible for a grown man to be seen in Batman underwear and not be thought of as a pedophile?
Didn't think so.

I also don't think I'll be getting any babysitting requests from my naked pals at the gym,

Friday, September 16, 2011

Stay-at-Home Dad

Bill Burr's beat this one to death, but it is time to put in my two cents.

Oprah claims [stay-at-home] moms have the "most difficult job on the planet".  I call bullshit.  (Again, I'm not the first.  Bill put it together on his last special that Annie and I were at the taping of.)

I'm working part-time at the wind farm right now.  3 days a week.  When I started there, I was only supposed to be there for 6 months or so, before I went off to upstate New York.  When NY fell through, they had already hired two engineers to replace me.  They can't really afford to keep me on full time.  So this is what I worked out with them while I find something else.

At first, the two days off were supposed to be used to thoroughly search for a new job.  Instead, it has turned into typical domestic activity.  I clean and cook and hang with Angel and Zumba.  It's a blast.  This morning I went to a salsa class at the sports club I'm a member of.  I'm going chocolate tasting at 1pm.  Plenty of time to shower before I go out dancing tonight.  I'm one of the Real Housewives of Oakland on Wednesdays & Fridays.

Atlanta, the only one I ever watched.  I was on the couch for weeks after surgery.

Granted, I don't have any screaming kids making me want to force Nyquil down their throats for some quiet time.  However, I can't imagine it's all that bad.  You just watch cartoons, color, and eat candy.  Rough life.

For now, I'm able to catch up on a movies.  Read books.  Blog.  Grocery shop/post office/everything without lines.  Play games.

If you manage to place yourself in the arms of a sugar momma (like me, be jealous), and you get to be a stay-at-home anything, you've won life's big lottery.

Britney = Sugar Momma. I went there.
Nap time,

Thursday, September 15, 2011

♫ I'm Not Wearing Underwear Today ♫

No, seriously.

We ran the dryer at our apartment 3 times yesterday.  Clothes never dried.  $4 down the tube, and I'm not wearing underwear.

For some reason, I haven't bought new underwear in like a decade.  So, we've (yes, Annie helps) been throwing old, holy boxers away a few at a time over the past month or two.  Now I don't really have much underwear left.  This is why I don't wear clothes.

I try to imagine the next person that's going to have to sit in this chair,

Wednesday, September 14, 2011


♫ Get On Your Feet! ♫  This is Big!!

I always picture Gloria in the ♫ Reach ♫ music video.

I have a big thing for Gloria Estefan.  Well, her music, at least.  She is the queen of my music collection.  Though, she might be tied with Whitney for most number of CDs that I own.  Co-queen, I guess.  (Yes, I still purchase CDs.  I like them.  Eat me.)  (I think I've technically owned more Weird Al Yankovic CDs throughout my life, but not now, and he was hip in middle school, so lay off.)  [Wow, I feel surprisingly defensive about my music all of a sudden.  Lord knows I take enough heat for the music I listen to.]

Own it. ♫ One, Two, Three ♫

Anyway, when I mention her name, all I can think of is another regret of mine from almost a decade ago.  I can't even believe that I remember it.  I was driving around in Monroe either before college or the summer between my freshman and sophomore year at Michigan.  There was one of those 'caller number 9 gets tickets to the concert' callouts on the radio.  Probably Tower 98.  It was for Gloria Estefan tickets.  Her last tour, since she was retiring from performing.

Own it. ♫ Turn the Beat Around ♫

I remember thinking that I should do it.  If, for no other reason, because I had this feeling that not many other people where I'm from would be calling in for that particular venue.  I had this gut feeling that I was going to win if I just called.  I didn't.  I don't know if it was laziness.  I had never been to a concert before, so maybe I was a little apprehensive.  Maybe I was nervous that I wouldn't be able to convince anybody to come with me.  Maybe it forced me to consider rather or not I was gay.  I couldn't tell you why, but I didn't call in.

♫ Come on, shake your body, baby, do the Conga! ♫

Gloria came.  Gloria went.  And I would never see her perform live.  That realization hit me a few months later.


And now she's back.  She better get her Latin ass on tour.

She's back, and I'm not missing her this time.

Three songs you should check out that never made it big:

  • ♫ Hoy ♫  Entirely in Spanish, and I don't know what she's saying, but I love it.
  • ♫ You Can't Walk Away from Love ♫  Annie hates this one, but it feels so exotic and cool to me.
  • ♫ Heaven's What I Feel ♫  A dance mix that would probably be big now as a throwback... 13 years later.  (This music video is embarrassing, otherwise I would have included it.)

♫ Rhythm is Gonna Get You ♫,

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Racist or Not?

I just got signed up for a new health/dental insurance and am starting to look for new doctors to become my primary physicians.  (The new medical insurance was the whole purpose behind the recent domestic partnership.)

So, I'm pretty much picking doctors based on a list of names only.

Honestly, I caught myself looking for the whitest names possible.  Or, I guess, most European names.  I was half ashamed when I realized what I was doing.  Here's what I found myself thinking as I came across each name:

Changlin Wang?  Not comfortable.
Lucy Kalanithi?  :|  Can't even place the origin of that last name.  Indian?
Nailah Thompson?  I'm liking Thompson, but what's this Nailah about?
Hai-tao Tang?  Fun to say.  Not comfortable.
Safa Magid?  :|
Nardine Riegels?  For some reason I picture a really old, Jewish lady.

Then, I decided to try googling their names, and now I can at least see their pictures and where they graduated from.  Aiming for Michigan grads!

What leads me to this method of picking doctors?  If you ever go in for your high blood pressure (Me) or high cholesterol (Me) or poison ivy penis (Me) or weird rash on your anus that you confuse with a hemorrhoid (Me) or acne all along your legs and ass when you work out (Me), you don't really want to have problems coming from misunderstandings or miscommunication.

That was exactly the problem I had with a doctor in L.A.  He's talking about heart complications, and all I get is slurs and mumbles.  Heck, I ended up getting an unnecessary Hepatitis test at one point.  I avoided him for the whole butthole rash incident.  I actually quit going to the doctor altogether.  So, I guess my subconscious was trying to control this scenario in the future, when the only factor I can influence is which name I pick.

Dentists, though, I guess I'm going more for breath?  I don't really need to understand what the dentist says.  I have amazing, natural teeth.  I found my last dentist the same way, and his name was something like Scott O'Malley.  Too bad it wasn't something solid like Joseph Smith.  (Heck, that name is white enough to base a religion off of.)  White people just don't typically have pungent lunches, I guess?  Maybe Italians...  No, I guess that one's a little bit racist.

♫ Everyone's a little bit racist ,

Monday, September 12, 2011

Stosur's Arms

Last night, Sam Stosur won her first tennis major by thoroughly thrashing Serena Williams.  Yes, tennis.  Some of us watch classy sports like that.  Hell, I've been to the U.S. Open twice.  Anyway, this was the first time that I can ever remember not rooting for Serena.  Why you ask?

Because I'm in love with Samantha Stosur's arms.

I want her to punch me in the face with them.

I want her to defend my honor at some bar and punch the fuck outta somebody.

I was pretty infatuated with her during the French Open two years ago.  I think she should have won, but she lost to the old, funny-looking, Italian chick.  I thought that there was something powerful in her play, but I couldn't nail down what made her so attractive.  I mean, the way her balls kick out makes for great tennis.  It wasn't until last night, while watching her destroy one of my girls, that I said aloud what it was.

I turned to Annie and told her how much Stosur's arms did it for me.  Annie replied by notifying me that her arms were way too big, and that they look like they belong to a man.  Her conclusion was that I must be in love with big, strong, muscular men.  Maybe this is my first step in admitting how hot muscles are.  Maybe Annie is pushing me outta the closet.  Maybe I really do just one some crazy girl with arm muscles to punch me in the face.  Wait, did I already say that?

You and me, Stosur.  You and me.  Have your people call mine,

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Graffiti with Punctuation*

Apparently, it was movie day today.  I had never heard of it, but Annie wanted to go see Contagion.  She gets off on dystopia-related fiction.  I like movies, so I was down.  We headed over to the Grand Lake to catch a matinee, so we only had to pay midwest ticket prices.  ($7, as opposed to $15 L.A. prices.)

My opinion:  meh.  There was nothing that made me particularly interested in the story.  I mean, I felt for Matt Damon.  Losing your wife and step-son, only to find out that your wife was a cheating whore would be pretty rough.  Trying to keep your last close relative safe was the only good story line.  That and the chick that would eventually get a Nobel prize for risking her life by testing her vaccine on herself.

Should've used Wahlberg. They're the same person, but Mark is better looking.
Diseased slut.

Other than that, there were just too many unresolved things.  Was the vlogger really batshit, or was he right all along?  Did that chick in China have Stockholm syndrome?  Do I really touch my face 3-5 times every waking minute?  Are blogs really just "graffiti with punctuation"?  (Regardless, it was a great quote, and I feel like it's a fair representation of my blog, if not all of them.)  *Does Demetri Martin really think that he can pull of the brilliant scientist/biologist role?  Not with that bowl cut.

Crazy or not?

"Don't be attached to anything that you can't walk out on in 30 seconds flat when you spot the Heat coming around the corner."  That was my second movie.  I'm sitting here blogging while I watch Heat, from 1995.  I've never seen it, but I know it is highly regarded.  It's pretty good.  It's making up for the movie earlier.  Both have crazy casts, but young Natalie Portman in Heat is probably the best surprise.

*Updated:  I had no clue that Heat was 2 hours and 45 minutes long.  It kept me up way past my bedtime.  It was so good, though.  Why can't Hollywood make good movies any more?  They're too busy trying to turn shit like Toddlers and Tiaras into a movie.  Pacino shaking hands with De Niro as he was dying:  classic movie gold.  So was young Portman's suicide attempt.  As if Pacino didn't have enough shit to deal with.

It was obvious that the movie was going to be good.  Hell, there's a Jim Gaffigan skit about how hits hard to talk about good movies long after they've come out.  I think Dane Cook drops some beats about being in a heist, referencing Heat as well.  Since that whole scenario has already been dissected with comedy, I have nothing else to do here.


Saturday, September 10, 2011

Go Blue

Annie and I had the opportunity to help a close friend paint obstacles in the playground for a preschool that she runs.  Can you find the one that we painted?

I'll give you a hint:

I don't know if I've mentioned it, but Annie's kind of a psycho when it comes to football.  I mean, I'm a huge Michigan fan, but she is insane.  It's like dating a boy.  The other day at the gym, I came out of the men's locker room to see her sitting in the lobby talking football with the guys.  Anyway, it's a big day today for the boys in blue, so I hope they crush the Irish.  After all, it is a historic night for the Big House!

At least she made the best thing that she's ever cooked in the over 8 years that I've known her last night.  It was a peach tart made from fresh peaches from the farmers' market.  Once again, you should follow that link, make it (it's simple), and thank me later.

It was her first excuse to use our fancy tart pan.
Go Blue,


Friday, September 9, 2011


It was really cold, and it was flowing much faster than this picture is showing.

Annie did a great job detailing my first experience backpacking.  We went all out for my first time, and I feel very accomplished afterward.  Sweet, darling, innocent Annie was nice enough to leave out some of the details more appropriate for my blog than hers:

We delayed our trip by a day because I didn't feel spectacular.  I was in full-on allergy mode, and my domestic partner's mother decided to poison me with a concoction of over the counter medication.  I've learned not to take dosing advice from her, even though she's half my weight.  She's a professional.

Bugs are damn annoying.  I was covered in 100% Deet which smells lethal.  Almost flammable.  Yet, there were no fires, so I couldn't roast 'mallows like I'd always imagined camping entailed.  I want s'mores if I'm walking my ass that far without a shower.

How's that for a view?

We had a wine platypus.  Yeah, most people hike with these little plastic, flimsy bottles filled with water.  We are not most people.  We poured a petite sirah into one of them before leaving.  This is a level of classiness not seen before in camping.  (Except it was designed specifically for wine, so I imagine it is a top seller in yuppie sporting goods stores.)

I didn't poop for over 24 hours.  This is/was a big deal.  You're asked to pack out any toilet paper you use.  You have no clue how much toilet paper I use to wipe my ass.  I'm not clean down there until you would blow your nose in the tissue after wiping.  You also have to dig a hole for your poop.  Nope, not worth it.

I experienced what it was like to skinny dip while being sober, in the full light of day.  Skinny dipping is way more awkward than I remember it being in the past, but those incidents were always clouded by the alcohol fairy (or at least the extreme blackness of night).

This was the view from my water seat above.

I got a little whiny in the morning.  Big surprise:  a fat guy on a thin mat resting on the ground didn't find himself very comfortable.  I also got really hot.  So, sleeping didn't go as well as planed.  ~RoB minus sleep becomes Dragon Rob!  Food helped a little, so did motion in the direction of the car.

You must separate yourself from your chapstick the entire time that it is dark out.  It is unacceptable.  I need my chapstick more than I need oxygen.  More than I need sex.  (If there was a better advertisement for Chapstick, I'd like to see it.)  Apparently bears like fruity smelling things, and it was the choice between luscious, soft, creamy lips or arm wrestling a grizzly.  My brain won the argument, but just barely.  I could probably take a bear if it had my last Cherry Chapstick.

Found a teddy bear saying "I <3 Chapstick". This was next to it.  WTF?

Apparently, I purchased a fancy, new, inflatable camping mat from Annie's dad's store (30% family discount!), and we're going out for 2 days in Pt. Reyes at the end of this month.  I'll either be really good at this soon, or I'll be craigslisting a fancy, new, inflatable camping mat from Annie's dad's store.  We all know I'm meant more for a fancy hotel downtown than a rustic campsite anyway.

Happy Camping,