Baboon Pirates

Scribbles and Scrawls from an unrepentant swashbuckling primate.

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Location: Texas, United States

Sunday, December 31, 2006

Another Lazy Sunday

Might Be Time For Yet Another Nap

Not much happening today. The bathroom shower tile just got re-grouted, and I can't jump in and take a shower for at least 4 more hours in order to let it dry. As I desperately need a shower before appearing out in public, it's safe to stay I ain't going anywhere real quick.

Fortunately there's a mess of navy beans in the crockpot, along with the hambone from the Xmas ham, kept in the freezer for just this eventuality.

I just finished the book I was reading, though, and Half Price Books is calling me from afar. They close at 6pm, so maybe I could just douse myself in cologne like a Frenchman and go out anyway. I could pull an old hoodie out of the closet, and masquerade as an unwashed liberal. Nah, my truck'd smell like foo-foo water for weeks.

The complete collection of Louis L'Amour novels I keep on the shelf comes in handy at times like these. Always one needing to be re-read.

More blogging tomorrow, if I don't blow myself up with fireworks tonight.

Friday, December 29, 2006

More Music You've Never Heard Of

Put Down That Coldplay CD And Step Away Slowly!

The Canuckistanian Edition of Friday's Random Ten

Rather than just copy Elisson's slice o' randomness off of the little white "choon" box, I thought I'd lay out some alternatives for you to listen to instead of the usual shite heard on today's radio.

A few of these tunes will probably be a complete mystery to some of you, but not to Lisa, I'm thinking. See, these bands/singers are all from north of the border. Their national anthem contains things about maple leaves and moose and beavers and hockey pucks. When they're not pelting each other with toonies and Timbits, or watching 51% Certified Canadian Content on the CBC, some of the Canajuns manage to craft a pretty sweet tune or two.

Here's ten. Enjoy!

This first guy deserves more south-of-the border popularity!

Kim Mitchell - Rock & Roll Duty

April Wine - Roller

Honeymoon Suite - New Girl Now

Triumph - Follow Your Heart

Saga - On The Loose

Red Rider - Lunatic Fringe

Bachman-Turner Overdrive - Roll On Down The Highway

Jann Arden - I Would Die For You

Moxy Früvous - King Of Spain

k.d. lang - Miss Chatelaine

Oh, as long as we're listening to k.d., if you haven't seen her duet of 'Crying' with Roy Orbison, GO WATCH IT, dammit! It's spectacular. Gives ya chills. Makes you pee yer britches with sheer delight.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

New Things To Read

OK, I'll post some actual content any day now...

As we head into the new year, you might be thinking it's time to freshen up the blogroll a bit.

Here's a list of a dozen sites I visit frequently, but for some inexplicable reason I don't have 'em on my blogroll. Drop by a few, and see if they're to your taste! Not all are blogs, and a couple you might want to visit from somewhere other than work...


Burnett's Urban Etiquette

Stuff On My Cat

Boing Boing

TCS Daily (Formerly Tech Central Station)

Wired News

View From The Porch


Collector's Firearms

Lone Star Times

Right Wing News


Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Nose To The Grindstone

I Shoulda Took The Week Off...

I'd planned to do a lot of blogging today. Alas, I was shanghaied by my Director as soon as my foot stepped off the elevator, and was put to work cleaning up other people's messes all %$&^$% damn day.

I've no desire to be the local go-to guy for putting wayward files back in order, but it seems I'm one of the few people here that can manage to file construction & professional service contractor's files alphabetically AND numerically at the same time. Kind of like walking & chewing gum, as far as I'm concerned, but judging by all the people flailing on the floor covered in Double Bubble, maybe that's a rare talent in these here parts.

Oh, well. Maybe some blogging tomorrow. In the meantime, here's a snapshot of yours truly on Christmas morning.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

A Short Post-Holiday Post

Guilt Pangs Over Non-Posting Are Overwhelming Me...

Hope y'all are enjoying your (hopefully) long weekend as I am. More tomorrow. I'm off to seek out Chinese food and a movie.

UPDATE: Bastards! Most of the movie theaters around here were only open a half day! The ones near here closed at 5 pm.

Oh, well. Doing laundry has a nice holiday feel to it. Maybe I'll pour eggnog in the fabric softener receptacle.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

All About Christmas

Does Anyone Else Blog Nekkid??

Yabu tagged me with a Christmas meme. So, here goes...

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags?
Usually wrapping paper, but gift bags are nice for odd-sized gifts.

2. Real tree or artificial?
Haven't had a real tree for decades. Allergies force plastic shrubbery upon me.

3. When do you put up the tree?
Early December, except this year. No tree! Too much house remodeling to have one up.

4. When do you take the tree down?
The weekend after New Year's.

5. Do you like eggnog?
I can drink it, but it's greatly improved by some brandy or cognac.

6. Favorite gift you received as a child?
Electric train set.

7. Do you have a nativity scene?
I had a nice one made of unglazed pottery, but I opened the box a few years ago, and half the pieces were shattered. I blame Satan. Or Santa. One of the two.

8. Hardest person to buy for?
Dad. He never asks for enough. I'm trying to make up for years of crap gifts (neckties, belts, wallets), but he's annoyingly modest.

9. Easiest person to buy for?
Mom, once she decides what she wants.

10. Mail or email Christmas cards?

11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received?
It's hard to say. I've had some abysmal sweaters and other clothes dumped on me as "gifts".

12. Favorite Christmas movie?

13. When do you start shopping?
Sometime in the fall.

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present?
Does fruitcake count?

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas?
Figgy Pudding Fudge & other treats

16. Clear lights or colored on the tree?
Either. It's all good.

17. Favorite Christmas song?
'I Want A Hippopotamus For Christmas'

18. Travel at Christmas or stay home?
I'll be traveling, but I prefer to stay home.

19. Can you name all of Santa’s Reindeers?
Yes. And it's Donner, not Donder! I don't care what the original poem said.

20. Angel on the tree top or a star?
I'd prefer a star, but an angel usually gets the top billing.

21. Open the presents on Christmas Eve or morning?
Christmas morning.

22. Most annoying thing about this time of year?
That sanctimonious look on the faces of media-types who've been selling you crap all year 'round. We're supposed to get all misty-eyed when they utter the words "We should all stop to reflect on the true meaning of Christmas"?

23. Do you have Jebus in your heart this Christmas?
Like the Grinch, my heart is three sizes too small. Maybe next year.

24. What would you like for Christmas?
A wad of cash large enough to pay off all my debts.

And five people to tag? Merry Christmas to:


Thursday, December 21, 2006

Confessions Of A Woobie Addict

Hey, It's Cheaper Than A Down Feather Habit...

First, I must explain the woobie.

There's a really funny movie called Mr. Mom, from way back in the day when a stay-at-home Dad was a novel idea. Jack Butler, played by Michael Keaton, has a kid who's constantly got a death-grip on his security blanket which the kid calls a "woobie".
[Trying to get Kenny to give up his security blanket]
Jack Butler: I understand that you little guys start out with your woobies and you think they're great... and they are, they are terrific! But pretty soon, a woobie isn't enough. You're out on the street trying to score an electric blanket, or maybe a quilt. And the next thing you know, you're strung out on bedspreads, Ken. That's serious!

I never had a security blanket as a kid. No, my woobie habit developed late in life. Somehow, I bypassed the electric blanket and quilt stages of addiction, and got hardcore hooked on bedspreads.

I inherited a large woven-cotton bedspread along with the bedframe and headboard from my grandmother's house. It had covered her bed for God knows how long, and was one of those bedspreads that was really meant for decoration rather than sleeping under. It had thousands of little nubbly knots in an intricate pattern, and as such could be quite uncomfortable if you slept on it wrong-side out, as you'd wake up with your skin looking very much like a golf ball.

Nevertheless, it was warm and comfortable as a throw-cover on the couch, and since heating my apartment cost the equivalent of the GNP of a Central American country, I got used to leaving the heat off and wrapping that big heavy cotton bedspread around me for TV watching, websurfing, and eventually, sleeping in. You could wrap yourself up in that thing like a big ol' enchilada, and sleep warm and comfy without any other blankets. It wasn't the easiest thing to extricate yourself from, and I'd often wake up needing to pee and have to hop to the bathroom, unwinding as I went.

I wore the crap out of that thing. It never got washed as often as it should've, and was getting threadbare by the time I moved down to Houston from Dallas. It suffered a critical injury three years ago, when I had it wrapped around me at the computer desk, and the tail end of it got under the office chair's wheel. I stood up, and there was a loud "RIIIIPPPP!!!". You could've passed a beer keg through that rip. I tried living with it like that, but invariably my ass would end up hanging out the rip on a cold night, so that spelled the end of Woobie #1.

I suppose I could've tried sewing it up, but it was time for a replacement. It took some looking, but I eventually tracked down a similar heavyweight cotton bedspread at Bloodbath & Beyond. This one was even better, king-sized, and the woven pattern wasn't all nubbly so it was much more comfortable.

I remember when I started calling it the "woobie". I had pulled the bedspread out of the dryer and set it on the couch while I went for another load of laundry. I came back to find Betsy Cat sprawled in the middle of the warm bedspread, trying to reapply the coat of cat hair I'd just washed off the damn thing. I poked her nose, and said "You get offa my woobie, Miss Fuzzybritches!!" She ignored me, as usual, so I had to stuff her in a pillowcase for a bit.

Woobie #2 is starting to show some wear & tear. The cats have both yakked up hairballs on it a couple of times, and I've spilled gun oil and iced tea on it, and bled all over it when I cut myself doing something I shouldn't have. So, I might go find a replacement, and keep this slightly ragged version for my Emergency Backup Woobie.

So, if there are any fellow woobie addicts out there, you're not alone. Admitting your dependency is the first step to... well, not recovery, exactly. I have no intention of giving up my woobie habit. It's just comforting to come out of the cedar-closet, as it were.

Cattus Dormus Couchii

How Funny Would It Be If Cats Snored??

Sure, she looks adorable in the picture... I assure you, I had a very different opinion of Pookie Cat when she starting yowling at me at 5:15 a.m.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Home For The Holidays

Where'd I Leave My Gorilla Suit?

Just sitting here tonight wondering who's gonna go all 'Dear Abby' at the family's Christmas dinner. There's always someone that's gotta let you know how your life could be improved just a little bit.

Fortunately, I have plenty of Scotch for social lubricity.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Forgotten Cookies

I'm Amazed I Remembered Them...

Baking Christmas cookies used to be de rigueur at the El Capitan household every year. Alas, expanding waistlines and decreasing free time has largely brought this activity to a halt.

I may make a couple of batches this year, just for old times sake. This recipe for Forgotten Cookies is quick and easy, uses few ingredients, and best of all you only need a mixing bowl and a couple of cookie sheets! Hardly any mess to clean up!

OK, first the prep. You'll need the following items: (recipe doubles/triples easily)

2 egg whites
2/3 c. sugar
Pinch of cream of tartar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup tiny chocolate chips -OR- 1 cup chopped pecans/walnuts -OR- 1 cup crushed candy cane pieces -OR- 1 cup crunchy frogs.

It's best to make these in the evening, just before you go to bed. The reason why will be clear shortly.

Before you start, cover your cookie sheets with aluminum foil (saves cleanup time later) and preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

DO NOT forget to preheat the oven! If you miss this step, you're pretty much humped, and your cookies will collapse.

While the oven is preheating, put the egg whites in a mixing bowl, pull out your Ronco Whisk-o-Mixer, and commence to applying corporal punishment to the egg whites until they get all foamy and meringue-y, but still kinda juicy-looking. At that point start slowly adding in the sugar, cream of tartar & vanilla. Keep beating the egg whites until they get stiff & foamy. When they lose that juicy look, carefully fold in in your cup of whatever add-in you chose.

Drop by spoonfuls onto the foil-covered cookie sheets. They should stand up in little peaks. How many cookies you get kind of depends on how big a spoon you use. You ought to get 36 teaspoon-sized cookies, 16-18 tablespoon-sized cookies, or 1-2 cookies if you use that big-ass wooden salad spoon that's hanging on the wall.

Put the cookie sheets in the oven, then TURN OFF THE HEAT! Then, just go to bed. Forget the cookies until the next morning! See? Forgotten Cookies!

When you pull the cookies out the next morning and they're black & shriveled, you forgot to turn off the heat. Also, you're probably standing in a burned-out kitchen.

If you remembered to turn off the heat, carefully peel the cookies off the foil, and put them in an airtight container. They'll keep for a few days.

These are absolutely dee-lish, and literally melt in your mouth!

Mucho Gusto!

More Cat Stuff

The Catblogging Continues Until Morale Improves!

I've been giggling over this pic all day!

I found it at Jenni's place. There's more! Go see!

Monday, December 18, 2006

The Look Of Fear

Actually, It Looks Like Raw Terror, Just Not Quite So Much.

Howdy, friends & neighbors. Blogging won't necessarily be light this week, perhaps just a bit erratic.

And how's that different from any other week? Ya got me there, podner...

I ran across this picture a few weeks ago. I kinda like it. You can't really tell what the cat's up to. I mean, it could be grooming the guinea pig, but it just might be TASTING the guinea pig, and the look on the pig's face just reflects that ambiguity perfectly. Pig don't know whether to shit or scoot!

I've seen this exact same expression before, but on a person.

Way back when, a bunch of us collegiate types were doing the typical collegiate thing, namely, sitting on a grotty old couch drinking beer, and wondering what to do with the day. It was too damned nice to be in class, after all.

We were in our usual hangout, the apartment of two friends. I'll call 'em Lincoln and Miguel. As was customary for young slackers in the early '90s, we eschewed gainful employment for as long as possible, so as to extend the available hours for grotty couch sitting and beer drinking, usually paired with the TV adventures of the Tiny Toons, or the Ren & Stimpy.

We were joined by females fairly regularly, Lincoln being one of those specimens known as "Man Pretty", and Miguel and I had low enough moral character to have no qualms soaking up Lincoln's overflow.

One fine evening, our mutual friend Chainsawed (who's shown up on these pages before) brought her visiting cousin to the Den of Iniquity. This cousin, whom I'll call Teela, was from the East Coast.

Apparently, things (meaning any conceivable human activity) are Done Differently on the East Coast, and we were informed of this fact constantly by Teela. It's not that she was mean about it, or bitchy, she just had a mouth that was set to either "Drink Beer" or "Talk LOUDLY".

How many licks off the beer bottle does it take for Teela to get hammered? About 7 bottles worth, apparently. It was somewhere after starting Beer #8 that she decided she wanted to bear Lincoln's children.

Now, you can't just walk into a stranger's apartment, and drag one of the occupants back to a bedroom for a quick game of Hide the Baloney. Nope, on the East Coast, things are Done Differently, so a little subtlety is in order.

Teela snakes in behind Lincoln on the couch, and sits on the couch back while massaging his shoulders. He's been putting up with her all afternoon, he's got a girlfriend, and he's just about out of beer. He's in no mood to be trifled with by a loud brassy chick from "Norfik".

Teela continues the massage, stealthily worming her way down between Lincoln and the couch back. Soon, she's got her legs wrapped around his waist and is whispering sweet nothings in his ear. Well, she would be whispering, were she sober. That naturally loud voice of hers naturally carried out into the hallway, where the entire world heard the equivalent of a Penthouse Letters column.

Lincoln is still trying to be cool with the situation. After all, he likes Chainsawed, doesn't like making a scene, and it's almost time for a beer run anyway.

Sensing she's about to lose her grip on Mr. Chosen Sperm Donor, Teela ups the ante. With probably 7 other people in close proximity in the room, she stops the back massage, reaches around for a handful of crotch, and begins kneading it like a wad of dough.

Take a look at the guinea pig. Add a bottle of Shiner Bock to one paw, a Winston in the other, shave it down a mite, and that's what Lincoln looked like EXACTLY. He didn't know whether to shit, shoot, or go blind.

Chainsawed latched onto Teela's arm and hauled her off to the bathroom for an emergency girl-talk. She was just about mortally embarassed by her cousin's behaviour.

Lincoln and Miguel bolted for more beer, joined quickly by the others who were hanging out that day. Chainsawed begged me & the Kilted Liberal to watch over Teela, 'cause they'd "just be gone a minute, honest!"

This led to 90 minutes of a drunk East Coaster bleating "I want LINCOLNNNNN!!!!" almost non-stop, while trying to climb out the apartment's living room window. (We had moved the couch to block her escaping out the door) Fortunately, she eventually passed out on the floor, and we could finally play some cards in peace & quiet.

I'm pretty sure someone still owes me a beer or two over that episode...

Sunday, December 17, 2006


Car Sponsored By Tender Vittles & Flea-B-Gone

"HEY!! Jeff Gordon, you metrosexual assclown! Next time you cut me off, I'm gonna spray piss on your tires and ass-rape your wife's Shih-Tzu! Stay outta my F#(%!n way!"

Friday, December 15, 2006

El Capitan's 2006 Xmas List

Admittedly, These Are Long-Shot Items...

Here's what's on my Christmas wish list this year.

A bucket of old coins that look kinda like this one:

A small pleasure boat.

A case of bubbly. Specifically, the '93 vintage Pol Roger cuvee Winston Churchill.

A custom-engraved .44 Mag Ruger Redhawk.

Claude Monet's "Le Bateu Atelier".

And, of course, an Italian "Friend With Benefits". Specifically, Monica Bellucci.

Oh, yeah... Maybe some food for the hungry, clothes for the nekkid (except for Monica), a bit of peace on earth, goodwill towards men, all that happy-feely stuff.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Joe Camel & The Surrealistic Bunny

You See The Damnedest Things At 2 A.M.

Back in the day, I used to stand around a lot.

See, the house I was living in was a smoke-free home, and as a 1/2 pack a day smoker back then, I had to go outside to feed my filthy habit. My room had a door that opened up to the carport outside at the rear of the house, and I spent countless hours leaned up against my car, puffing away on a cig while reading a book, or doing my college coursework, or playing my guitar, or whatever other mischief I could get into.

I must have spent almost as many hours under that carport as I did inside. Most of the parties at that house involved moving the cars out, and setting out chairs & tables under the carport. I spent one enjoyable evening teaching a girl to two-step and waltz Texas-style, the scattered and sparse oil-dry pellets underfoot an almost perfect substitute for the wax dust on a hardwood dance floor.

My favorite times under the carport were during heavy thunderstorms, when you could stand dry and comfortable, smoking a cig while the storm vented its fury on the neighborhood. A close second was late at night, when things got very quiet, and the only sounds made were the flick of the Zippo, the flip of a page turning, and the occasional low drone of a car passing by out front of the house.

Here's the carport. It's on Davis Dr. in Arlington, TX.

It was very hard to catch me unawares back there. The driveway was one of the few left in the neighborhood still covered in gravel instead of asphalt, so I could hear the crunch of footsteps or the pop-crackle of tires rolling towards the back yard. I had friends that would leave me "presents" of purloined concrete yard ornaments late at night, so I made a habit of keeping an ear tuned to new arrivals.

So, one late night I'm out back leaning up against my car, sipping a beer, smoking a Camel, and perusing the latest Camel Cash catalog, looking for what cheap giveaway item I will trade 8 months of my life and 2.35% of my lung capacity for. I catch a flicker of movement out of the corner of my eye, look up, and enter one of the more surreal moments in my life.

There's a rabbit sitting there in the driveway staring at me. Looked kinda like this one, only maybe not quite so disapproving:

He done snuck up on me wit' those fluffy wabbit feet. Never heard him coming.

So, I'm standing there, looking at this rabbit, trying to get my brain to process this anomaly. We're in the middle of a large city. Where the heck is a big ol' domesticated rabbit coming from? None of my neighbors raise rabbits. Cats? Sure. Squirrels? Bastards are everywhere. Big flop-eared rabbits? Kinda thin on the ground.

Mr. Bunny wiggles his nose at me, and just sits there. I guess he's trying to figure me out too.

I look at the rabbit. I look at my beer. Nope, only had two bottles. I look at my cigarette. Nope, no wacky tobacky tonight. Just my usual Camel Filters. I look at the rabbit. He's still looking at me.

I come to the eventual conclusion that I'm not hallucinating the bunny. He might be hallucinating me, though, so in a cautious solipsistic manner, I approach him slowly.

What does one offer a late night visitor? Well, drinks and refreshment, of course. Mr Rabbit exhibited no interest in a sip of my beer, and he was definitely too young to be smoking, so I wandered back into the house to see if there were any carrots in the fridge.

I found some slightly wilted romaine lettuce leaves and half an onion. Well, better than nothing. Serves him right for dropping in unannounced.

I return to the carport, and Mr. Rabbit has vanished. Not a trace. I go find a flashlight, and commence to whacking the shrubbery to see if I can locate him.

Mr. Rabbit had returned to the dimension that spawned him. I never saw him again.

So, as a word to the wise, when you're hanging out on your carport late at night, give up those nasty cigarettes, and snack on some carrot sticks instead. You'll be healthier, and you'll have a treat for wandering bunnies.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Not The Usual 'Baba O'Riley'!!

How Have I Missed Seeing This Group In Concert???

What an amazing, energetic and joyous performance this is! The crowd's energy is so infectious, I'm sitting here in my office chair bouncing along with the song, even though it was recorded long ago and transmitted via all those tiny Interweb tubes!

I have *GOT* to see Blue Man Group in concert. This absolutely rocks!

Monday, December 11, 2006

Can't You Take A Hint??

Obtuseness Is A Legitimate Personality Trait!

Relationships are like getting injections of dopamine right to the brain, interrupted occasionally by having your 'nads massaged with a cheese grater. In otherwords, sheer bliss punctuated with extreme misery.

Army of Mom has a delightful post up today, which will no doubt get her booted from the Conniving Wimmens Testicle-Twisting Club for revealing deep dark secrets about relationships! Go read it. I'll wait.

She's absolutely right about which she speaks. Men don't take hints real well. Some things, we get perfectly well. F'rinstance... a deep sigh when we're driving through a nice neighborhood full of big houses means one thing... Get off your ass and find a better job, save more money, I'm tired of living in this rathole apartment! That one's easy enough.

Finding all your clothes on the front yard and the locks changed? Well, that one's pretty clear too.

Subtle hints? Not gonna happen. Let me give you an example of what I speak:

El Capitan and Significant Other 2.0 were wandering through a shopping mall. Over the course of 2 hours or so, we enter approximately 40 stores, and view literally hundreds of items offered for sale. On at least 1/4 of the items viewed, one of the following phrases was uttered by S.O. 2.0:

"That's pretty!"
"What do you think about this?"
"This would look really nice in the den."
"How do you like the color on this?"
"This is nice! Is it on sale?"
"Do you think this would go with (random clothing article)?"
"Take a look at this!"
"I wonder if they make this in a navy blue?"
"Do you think (random friend) would like this?"

OK, fast forward 4 months to S.O. 2.0's birthday. El Capitan drops a wad at the jewelry store for shiny baubles, only to have S.O. burst into tears, followed by throwing a walleyed conniption fit for not getting her what she asked for. After all, she'd specifically pointed it out! You horrible unfeeling brute!

Quit nodding your head in agreement, ladies...

What did she ask for? I'll give you a hint. It was one of those 200+ items commented on at the mall, and the key phrase I should have clued in on was one of the 9 phrases listed above. Yup, one phrase uttered 120 days previously was supposed to have conveyed her deep burning need to own the indicated item, lodge in my memory, and compel me to purcase said item months in the future. Had I just picked up on her hint, all would have been well.

Anyone ever learn a foreign language? In some languages, the tense or declension you use literally conveys the message. The word order and vocal inflection aren't as important as the form used.

What we need is a form of English that conveys the need to buy the correct things. I think I have an idea how to go about this...

"Hey, Male Person with boinking privileges! This object appeals to me! Purchase it at once, or lose those privileges!"

See? We'd listen to that...

So, here's some other phrases that might help improve the communication process:

NO "Have you ever been to Cancun?"
YES "We are NOT going to your mother's for Xmas!"

NO "I've had SUCH a hard day..."
YES "I want oral sex."

NO "This house is such a mess."
YES "Get your got-damn skivvies off the bathroom floor!"

NO "I fed Mr. Tiddles & Fuzziekins already."
YES "Your turn to scoop out the litterbox!"

NO "Can we cuddle?"
YES "You move over into the wet spot."

Sunday, December 10, 2006

An Early Warning

'Cause Knowing Is Half The Battle...

I stopped by the 24-hr Sonic drive though last night on the way home from seeing the newest Bond flick. My sweet tooth was making one of its infrequent appearances. Usually my choice of a midnight snack is something from either Taco Hell or the Crap In The Box drive-thru, but they don't make milkshakes South of the Border, and Jack's shakes suck major ass.

So, I score a cherry lime Coke, and try Sonic's new Cheesecake bites with strawberry dipping sauce in lieu of a milkshake.

Big mistake. They serve the little cheesecake bites HOT.

Ew. Like little warm squares of sweet cheese goo farting in your mouth. Nasty beyond words. Cheesecake must be served cold, IMHO.

Stick with the shakes, friends and neighbors...

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Have You Switched?

I'm Always The Last One To Know...

Apparently there's a new version of Blogger up and running.

Anyone of you Blogspot people switched over yet? How's it working out?

Friday, December 08, 2006

Firearms Aesthetics

'Cause I Don't Have the $$$ To Collect Battleships...

Gun collectors, or just gun accumulators, have a myriad of reasons for their particular taste in hobbies. The fevered ravings of the gun-fearing wussies aside, not every collector is a paranoid recluse, eagerly awaiting the arrival of the UN's secret Black Helicopter Squadron from their underground bunker/arsenal.

Some folks collect only Winchester lever-action rifles. Some people like Pre-WWII Smith & Wesson revolvers. Some collectors have the wherewithal to collect original Colt Walkers & Patersons. Heck, I know one guy that's into those tiny micro-caliber "Velodog" revolvers from Europe.

Me? I like accuracy. I like fine craftsmanship, and I especially like weapons that are pleasing to the eye. If a firearm can be accurate, reliable, and look good while performing the first two essential functions, then that's one I'm interested in owning.

Now, just because I like 'em, doesn't mean I can afford 'em! Many of my favorites I'll never have a chance to own, or will have to make do with a repro.

Some times I can't really put a finger on why I like particular designs as much as I do. Why do I go nutso over an Audemars Piguet or a vintage Breguet, when a Vacheron Constantin or a Patek Phillipe leaves me cold? Suffice it to say, they tweak my interest, and that's good enough reason for me.

Below are just a few of the visual reasons I stay in the gun acquisition business. They may not be to your taste, but to me, they are a representation of aesthetic perfection.

Remington Exposed-Hammer Shotguns

Smith & Wesson Schofield Model

Saw-Handled Dueling Pistols

Mannlicher Rifle Stocks

Sidehammer Revolvers

Smith & Wesson Mod. 28

English-stocked double shotguns

Smith & Wesson Model 24-3

Thursday, December 07, 2006

2000 Lbs Of Angry Pot Roast

A Tale Told With Satellite Pictures

The bit about the angry pot roast is Tom Lehrer's, not mine. I'll 'fess up to that right off the bat.

This is a satellite picture of a small part of a medium-sized ranch down on the Gulf Coast of Texas.

It was about 1200 acres overall, and was more or less a hobby ranch for a man I worked for back in the 80's. He made his eatin' money from oil field equipment, and fooled around with cows on the weekends. He ran at least 200 head of cattle, mostly Beefmasters, with a few Brahmans and mongrel Shorthorns here and there. There were also some goats and whatever odd beasts the foreman was raising.

Here's the house and barn/outbuilding areas. That big white-roofed barn was three stories tall, and could easily fit two 18-wheeler trucks & trailers in the center door area, just to give you some perspective.

I worked as a general go-fer and Boy Friday. Some weekends, I'd be tearing apart and repairing the PTO on the brush hog, other weekends, I'd be working the squeeze cage while the vet inoculated and ear-tagged the cows. The owner let corporate clients hunt deer in the fall, and often I'd head out to maintain the assorted blinds and tree stands.

This is the gigantimous pasture at the front of the property. I forget how many acres is was. Bloody huge. Mostly full of grazing cows.

Here's about where I got the Jeep CJ-5 stuck in some serious gumbo mud while out laying saltlick blocks. When you stick a 4 wheel drive Jeep, you're STUCK.

Here's where I needed to walk to in order to get the tractor and a length of chain to haul the Jeep back to the road.

Here's about where I got in that huge pasture when I remembered that the frigging enormous and frequently enraged stud bull was in the pasture that weekend. Damn thing looked like a Suburban with horns and hooves. He usually napped in the shade, when he wasn't boinking the heifers. "X" marks the usual spot.

The bracket marks where I set the new land speed record for the 440 meter dash, and then leapt a 5 foot barbed wire fence into the goat pasture. Physics tells me I must have placed hands and feet on that fence to get over the fence, but I have no memory of that ever happening.

The stick figure is where I collapsed in a boneless heap, completely out of breath. The "X" is about where the bull was standing when I recovered my wits enough to get up and look around. He wasn't in a foul mood that weekend, and had merely ambled over to see why the goats were raising a ruckus. Apparently, boinking a dozen heifers puts a bull in an amiable state of mind.

Moral of the story? Sometimes it's safer to take the long way around. He might have only boinked 11 heifers that day...

Only In Texas...

Where The Hell Is Snook, TX? I MUST GO!!!

Via YouTube and the Texas Country Reporter, I bring you the majesty and mystery of...


I felt my arteries tense up just from watching that video clip...

BTW, Snook, TX is just outside of College Station, between Navasota & Caldwell!

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

It All Starts With One Hen

Dredged From The Mental Archives

I can see his face as clear as day. Mike Something-Or-Other. Redhead with glasses, kinda pudgy. He did this little memory exercise for the little Boy Sprouts during campfires. The kids loved it, thought he was a genius. The adults thought he was smoking the reefer. They were probably both correct.

This was repeated verse by verse, the leader starting, the audience repeating, cumulatively adding them all together until the inevitable trainwreck...

One hen

Two ducks

Three squawking geese

Four limerick oysters

Five cavorting corpulent porpoises

Six pairs of Don Alverso's tweezers

Seven thousand Macedonians in full battle array

Eight brass monkeys from the ancient sacred crypts of Egypt

Nine apathetic sympathetic diabetic old men on roller skates with a marked propensity toward procrastination and sloth

Ten lyrical spherical diabolical denizens of the deep who haul quartz around the quay of the quarry with a quim, quiver and a quake all at the same time!

Try it next time you and your friends get a load on.

Problematic Postings

Being Too Obscure Might Work Against You...

Maybe it's because my post defended Tom Tancredo. Maybe it's because I just couldn't resist comparing today's crop of liberal activists to the Sturmabteilung aka Hitler's Brownshirts.

Whatever the reason, it spurred some anonymous person to bravely insert three quotes by Adolf Hitler in my comments, issue some vague challenge, then scurry back to whence they came. Witness for yourself:
Aaaaaah, freedom of expression....

Wie glücklich für Führer, die Männer nicht denken.

Die große Stärke des totalitären Zustandes ist, daß sie die zwingt, die sie fürchten, um sie nachzuahmen.

Universalausbildung ist das Korrodieren und das auflösende Gift, das Liberalismus überhaupt für seine eigene Zerstörung erfunden hat.

Now, do it in Spanish and Arabic ....

For what it's worth, the quotes translate as follows:

1) How fortunate for leaders that men do not think.

2) The great strength of the totalitarian state is that it forces those who fear it to imitate it.

3) Universal education is the most corroding and disintegrating poison that liberalism has ever invented for its own destruction.

For what it's worth, Part II, here it is in Spanish:

1) Cómo es afortunado para los líderes a que los hombres no piensan.

2) La gran fuerza del estado totalitario es que fuerza a los que la teman para imitarla.

3) La educación universal es la corroción y el veneno de desintegración que el liberalismo ha inventado siempre para su propia destrucción.

For what it's worth, Part III, here it is in Arabic:

1) Bak. Derk-derk-Allah. Derka derka, Mohammed Jihad. Haka sherpa-sherpa. Abaka-la.

2) Derka derka, Mohammed Jihad. Haka sherpa-sherpa. Abaka-la. Bak. Derk-derk-Allah.

3) Mohammed Jihad. Haka sherpa-sherpa. Abaka-la. Bak. Derk-derk-Allah. Bak. Derk-derk-Allah. Derka derka.

When I wrote the post last weekend, I debated inserting one of the SA's maxims. To wit: "All opposition must be stamped into the ground".
Seemed a bit crass, and I was looking to remain on the subtle side. Well, as subtle as you can be, posting a jpeg of well-used jackboots.

To make my position clear, and avoid any more violations of Godwin's Law, I'll restate things in a more open manner.

Winning the political debate by muzzling the opposition through violence and intimidation is a Very Bad Thing.

Verstehen Sie, kamerad?

Monday, December 04, 2006

The Passing Of Piper

Cattus Mortuus Est!

It is with heavy heart that I read of the loss of one of Laurence Simon's beloved cats this morning. Laurence has made a cottage industry out of catblogging, and his cats are quite literally known around the globe.

Piper, the smallest of his cats, headed off to the Great Litterbox In The Sky this morning due to complications from an enlarged heart. She didn't have the panache of Nardo, or the august presence of Edloe, or the out-of-control fuzziness of Frisky, but she did have the cutest set of cat toes that poked out in front of her nose when she slept!

Adios, Piper! You'll be missed! Who's gonna beat the stuffing out of Nardo now??

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Weekend Photoshopperizing

Just Foolin' Around On A Saturday Night

Cowboy Blob is having another one of his photoshop/caption contests over at his saloon & shootin' gallery.

This cat pic is the source material:

Only one caption immediately sprang to mind...

Of course, if you're not getting the reference, perhaps it would help if you saw it as I see it!!

My image manipulation skills just weren't up to making the cat dance on the walls, though...

Friday, December 01, 2006

All Hail Diversity!

We Respect EVERYONE'S Values, Assuming They Match Ours...

Did y'all see this article?

Tancredo protesters turn violent
By Anne Mulkern
Denver Post Staff Writer

Violence erupted at a Michigan law school Thursday when protestors tried to block a speech by Colorado Congressman Tom Tancredo.

Police were called after protestors pulled a fire alarm prior to the speech on immigration policies. There were at least three violent incidents with protestors targeting student backers of the event, Tancredo, R-Littleton, said today.

"One was spit on, one was kicked, and one was punched," Tancredo said in an e-mail. "Tires were also slashed."

Michigan State University College Republicans and Young Americans for Freedom sponsored the event.

Tancredo went to Michigan State University College of Law as part of a visit to the state to talk about immigration. He leads the group that opposes legal status for illegal immigrants.

Protestors interrupted the speech with loud shouting.

College newspaper The State News reported that protesters carried signs reading "Ignorant Racist" outside the room where the speech was held. They were not allowed in with the signs, the paper said. It also reported that about 40 people attended the speech.

Tancredo said in the email that protestors organized on the Internet social networking site Facebook.

"They declared ahead of time on facebook that they would not allow me to speak," Tancredo said in the e-mail.

Tancredo also is meeting with the Republican state party chair, members of the state legislature, and is speaking at a fundraiser for a Republican women's group, Tancredo spokesman Carlos Espinosa said.

Mmmmm, don't you just love tolerance, diversity and multiculturalism! It's just *so* abundant on our nation's college campusues!

I just have one thing to say to the protestors. It looks like y'all need a better PR agent. Your little group never seemed to get recognized, and you're apparently not photogenic enough to get your picture in the paper. It seems to me that maybe y'all need to shed the black bandannas and scruffy jeans and hoodies.

Here's a start on an outfit that really matches your goals and tactics! Remember, manipulating the media means looking GOOD!

Oh, you'll need a recognizable logo, too. This one hasn't been used for a few decades. It oughta be free of copyright by now!

Now you're all set to spread peace, tolerance and love to all mankind!