Thursday, January 31, 2013

Today's Happy Hour Soundtrack

Another two-fer, as has been our habit of late...

That's "Love In Vain" and it's Robert Johnson doin' the singin' and playin' coz the tune belongs to him.  But here's how I first became acquainted with the tune:

You can love or hate the Stones... I'm of the opinion there's NO middle ground... but even haters have to acknowledge their love of the blues and the fact they introduced many a white boy (and girl) to the genre.  I'm not exactly one of those White Boys I speak of, mainly coz I was fortunate enough to stumble into Black Radio at a very early age.  From an old post:
Fast forward to 1960. I was now 15 and living in Washington, D.C. I'll choose the James Brown single on the left as an example of the revelation that came upon me beginning sometime around 1959 and culminated in 1960. That revelation was Black Radio and the R&B music featured there… which was unlike anything I had ever heard before (sorta: see Fats Domino, above). I'd go into my room at night and listen to my crackly, staticky AM radio, marveling at the music I heard… music that was Unobtanium in my white-bread, lily-white suburban world. Once again, consider the times… you simply did NOT find James Brown, Lloyd Price, or Ray Charles in the "hits" bin at Woolworths back in the day… that day being 1958 - 1960… at least not in suburbia. I would have had to journey into Southeast Washington to get that music in my hands back then and since I was only 15 and without a driver's license, that was out of the question. My parents simply wouldn't go there… literally but the music was on the radio, the radio was in my room, and it was ON every single night. It was an education like no other.
So there's that.  My larger point is Mick and the boys expanded what was a pretty solid base, from a strictly personal perspective.  My education continues, even unto this day.  So much blues, so little time.


So I'm browsing through the overnight mail and come across this lil blurb in a message from NatGeo, to the effect of "Is your cat cheating on you?" along with this supporting video:

(There used to be a video here but I had to take it down due to an annoying auto-play glitch with the audio.  Go here to see the video.)

I suppose that's yet another reason I'm a dog person: unswerving loyalty.  We don't NEED no steenkin' cheatin' critters!

OTOH... cats do kill rats.  And eat the diseased things.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Small Treasures

We all have 'em; here's one of mine:

That would be my house beer opener... a weighty, cast aluminum artifact of considerable heft that's been with me at least 30 or 40 years, and mebbe more.  I acquired this beer opener from a bar girl in Wakkanai, Japan sometime in the 1968 - 1970 time frame, if memory serves.  OTOH, memory may NOT serve and it's entirely possible I acquired the opener at a later date, like when I was at Yokota AB in the mid-'70s.  The opener used to have a purple tassel attached to the bottom of it but that wore out and faded away YEARS ago.  That said, you've seen this opener in nearly every beer post I've ever made but I never gave the thang its just desserts until today.

And "Gold Rabbit?"  Who knows?  I don't remember and Google is no help.  I suspect that's the name of a little-known beer, and one which I don't recall ever sampling.  I was more of a Sapporo kinda guy.


From My Buddy Ed In Florida...

      Class Photo:   Shanghai University 


   Class Photo: University of Colorado  
I was NEVER very good at math.  Heh.

Update, 1518 hrs:  Here's what one of those Chinese math majors has to say about this post:
I'm just searching for this data for a little bit. Right after Six hours regarding continuous Googleing, now I bought the item in the internet site. I'm wondering what’s the Google’s trouble of which doesn’t list such type of enlightening websites much better the highest.

The best internet sites will be brimming with crap. Particularly a short while ago, following your brand new panda protocol up-date. 
Screech Engrish, Gee-Eye!  (And thank The Deity At Hand for Blogger's most-excellent spam filter, which stops most of this shit from getting through.)

Update II, 1625 hrs:  Seattle Andy brought to my attention that the photos were NOT visible in my original post.  I fixed that and I apologize; the post looked just fine to me when I first put it up.  Fucking Blogger. 

Tuesday, January 29, 2013


In which we break out the thesaurus in search of alternatives to "potpourri," which is well and truly over-used in these parts.  Salmagundi is new to me, defined as...
1. A salad of chopped meat, anchovies, eggs, and onions, often arranged in rows on lettuce and served with vinegar and oil.
2. A mixture or assortment; a potpourri.
We're obviously using Number Two here... even though Firefox doesn't think the word is spelled quite right.  Then again, Firefox doesn't like a lot of words I use. 


We're feeling kinda snake bit of late.  Last week I went to change out one of the light bulbs in the microwave and the glass envelope twisted out of its base, coming out of the nuker while said base remained firmly ensconced therein.  I stood on my head for about ten minutes doing most everything I knew to get the damned light bulb base out of the nuker... all to no avail.  So I did what any good renter would do, which is to say I tossed the problem into the landlord's lap.  The next day it was fixed.

This isn't the first problem I've had with the microwave.  Previously:
And then there's this, speakin' o' inflation... a friendly serviceman from our local appliance store just left the premises o' El Casa Inmóvil de Pennington.  He was here to replace... unsuccessfully... the handle on my microwave, which broke off in my hot lil hand as I went to open the door of said nuker last week.  Well, it only broke at the top mount and still remains attached to the door, which is a good thang... mainly coz I'd starve if the nuker went tits-up.  But the serviceman brought the wrong part and the handle that was in bench stock ain't the right one, so it's back to the drawing board for to order a new handle... further repairs to be rescheduled in the near future, one hopes.

But my point is this: the wrong handle had "57.21" marked on the bag and I asked... incredulously... is that the price or the part number for that lil piece o' plastic?  "Price," sez he.  What's worse is the new, improved handle costs 85 Yankee Dollars.  I'm glad this is a warranty repair, otherwise I'd feel a serious need for flowers and chocolates after this experience, if not a lil kiss.
Well now.  One wonders how much a handle for a Frigidaire refrigerator is gonna cost, because THAT'S the latest thing to break... on Sunday-past... in egg-zactly the same manner as the handle on the nuker (see the pic, right).  All the appliances in this apartment... nuker, fridge, stove, and dishwasher... are made by Frigidaire and so far two of the handles have snapped off.  All that's left to break are the handles on the freezer and the oven, as the dishwasher doesn't have one.  I've alerted the property management company...

The foregoing is but one reason why it's better to rent than own at this stage in life.  For me, anyhoo.


I had the strangest dream last night, wherein I got out of bed and went into the living room to find someone had broken in and stolen everything off my walls, including some stuff that wasn't there... but stuff that USED to adorn my walls in Former Happy Days.  Weirder still was the fact The Second Mrs. Pennington was standing in the living room, crying over lost art.  TSMP rarely visits me in dreams, yet there she was, bemoaning the fact that "we" had been burgled.  "We?" sez I, in the dream...  At which point in time we woke up, thoroughly baffled and confused.  Ah well, it was time to get up, anyhoo.


Blog-Bud Lou has a post up today about the murder rate in Chicago and the city's response, which would be to further tighten their already restrictive firearms laws.  I dropped a link to this video in comments at her place...

... sayin' that Milwaukee and Chicago ain't that far apart, geographically, but the cities are WORLDS apart when it comes to reality. 

Monday, January 28, 2013

Why Not Minot?

Air Frame: A B-52H Stratofortess comes in for a landing at Minot AFB, N.D., on Jan. 7, 2013. (Air Force photo by SrA. Brittany Y. Auld) Click on image above to reach larger version.  (Ed: And don't that look COLD?)
The answer to the question is "Freezin's the reason."  That's an old AF saying, one I heard many, MANY times when I received orders to this gawd-fersaken place, which was 138 miles northwest of Minot.  Like this:

View Larger Map

Minot was my support base and we... my Fortuna-Friends and I... used to go down that way to party when we weren't headed north to Regina, Saskatchewan (both "cities" were about equal distance from Fortuna).  But yeah, freezin' WAS the reason.  I never really knew what "cold" was until I spent a winter up that way.

In other news... I poured my first cup at 1312 hrs today, a new personal worst for me (without a hangover).   But I'm one-third of the way through Season Three!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Today's Happy Hour Soundtrack...

... is a rather long one.  Here's one of my favorite semi-classical pieces:

We heard this while out on our semi-monthly big commissary run (big = $100+) earlier today, courtesy of Sirius/XM's "classical pops" station.  Once we got home and put all the groceries away we dug out our Gershwin CD, put it in the CD player, opened the door and windows, poured a beer, lit a cigar, set out for the verandah, and proceeded to enjoy ourselves.  Which we did, and mightily so.

The version you see/hear above isn't the version I listened to; mine is an Elmer Bernstein recording.  The Deity At Hand knows there are MANY versions of this piece... I googled "best version of Rhapsody In Blue" and came across the version above.  Just for the record:  I don't believe I've EVER heard a bad version of this piece.  Further for the record:  Mom introduced me to Rhapsody In Blue... I can never listen to this piece without thinkin' of her and that's a classic case of Saudade.  Chase that link if'n ya don't get it.

Small Stuff, Objectivism Division

William Buckley on Ayn Rand & Atlas Shrugged...

The ONLY reason I'm posting this occurs around the one minute mark when Buckley sez "I had to flog myself to read it."  I've tried to read "Atlas" three times in my life and never got further than a couple of hundred pages in before I quit.  There's no other book written in the English language with more turgid prose... none.

I do believe WFB vindicates my position... even if he finished the damned thing and I didn't.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Confession Is Good For the Soul, Part Two

We're not gonna be quite as racy as we were in Part One, nor are you in danger of reading many more of these confessions, Gentle Reader, mainly coz (a) we're not Catholic, so this sorta thang isn't a habit (groan) with us and (b) I like to hide my dirty laundry.

I shall now take a deep, deep breath and continue.  Those of you who have been with me for a while know that I'm not a movie kinda guy and I'm not much on teevee, either... unless it's to poke fun at annoying commercials or praise PBS, both o' which I do semi-frequently.  The astute among you might have noticed I made a rather opaque statement about my sleeping habits of late, mentioning in a post yesterday that I have remained abed until noon or later every single day this week.  That's because I've stayed up into the wee smalls... the WEE smalls, like 0430 ~ 0500 hrs... every day this week.

Watching Amazon streaming video.

Watching Amazon streaming video of a freakin' teevee show.

Watching Amazon streaming video of  "24."

Is there some sort of support group out there I can join?  I've watched 45 episodes this week: all of Season Two and 21 episodes of Season One (why I began with Season Two is unknown to me, I just did).  I never once saw this show when it was in prime time but I sure as Hell am addicted to it now.  All eight seasons are available for viewing on Amazon (free!  Coz I'm Prime.) and I'm thinkin' I've gone and ruined my life by takin' that first hit/drink.

"Hi.  My name is Buck and I'm a junkie..."


Let's all celebrate winter...

On second thought, all y'all can celebrate it... I'd rather NOT.

From the Usual Source of these thangs.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Today's Happy Hour Soundtrack

Lyle... singin' and playin' for our indoor Happy Hour on a gray and chilly day:

She was old enough
To know better
And she was strong enough
To be true
And she was hard enough
To know whether
He was smart enough
To know what to do

And you can't resist it
When it happens to you
No you can't resist it
When it happens to you

And you can tell your story
And you can swear it's true
But you can save your lying
For some other fool  
But, Hey.  The truth is relative, or so I've heard.


The post title sez it all... at least where MY feelings about women in combat are concerned.  I do believe I may have lived too long.

We're still goin' through the overnight mail; we saw the above at the Usual Source for such thangs.

Yet Another Re-Run

This is the third time I've posted this...

Morning Coffee

So. I took my morning coffee on the verandah today…three cups of it, anyway, accompanied by about a third of a cigar. And, in so doing, I put off my usual routine of coffee/making the virtual rounds until rather late in the morning, as defined by folks with real lives and…um…dare I say it?

There wasn’t a cloud in the sky when I stepped outside, coffee in hand, this morning. And it was already up to 75 degrees at 0830. A beautiful day, in other words. So, there I sat, coffee in one hand, cigar in the other, feet up and feeling pretty danged good about things. I got to thinking about days gone by and of other places I’ve had my morning coffee.
The first place that came to mind was here, and this is a pic of my deck at the ol’ homestead in Fairport, NY. I was always an early riser back in my working days, and I’d often take my first cup of coffee on the deck (and sometimes the second cup, too, depending on the schedule) and watch the sun come up over the neighborhood…say around 0530, or so. In the summer time, of course, the deck being not quite as accommodating in the winter, as you can see. The thing I loved about this particular place and time was the quiet…traffic hadn’t yet begun its crawl out of the sub-division, the birds were chirping, most of the world was still asleep, and there was always a certain coolness in the air before the summer sun began warming Upstate New York. It was very peaceful, in other words, and a good place to get organized while contemplating the upcoming day.
So…various and sundry other places popped into and out of my mind, as well. The dining room table in Ferndale, Michigan that overlooked the backyard, aka “the garden,” as the Brits say. Watching the dogs chase the squirrels in the early summer morning, windows open, and warm, humid breezes blowing in and billowing the lacy curtains back and forth.
Or sitting on my patio at the house in Oklahoma City (Choctaw, actually, a suburb of OKC), looking out over the property which consisted of two acres dotted with numerous scrub oaks and two or three “real” trees (i.e., over ten feet tall). One of the real trees was a towering oak of about 40 feet or so that sported an old-fashioned two-seat swing suspended from a thick low-hanging bough. Coffee was taken in that swing too, often in the company of The Second Mrs. Pennington…but she usually only joined me in the swing on the weekends.
And then there were those times back in my Work Days when I was on the road and had to arise, get cleaned up, and get fully dressed before I had my first cup. I took those first cups in various dining rooms or coffee shops at the hotels I stayed in. London. Singapore. Beijing. Moscow. Various places in the US of A.  The coffee was uniformly bad, nearly always. A good cup of coffee in the days before Starbucks and especially overseas was a rare thing, indeed. Eventually I took to carrying my own coffee with me.
I thought about other places where morning coffee was had…places like the various apartments I’ve lived in, the Air Force chow halls, and the RV parks I’ve stayed at/in, too. My morning coffee, and the rituals surrounding it, is perhaps the one thing that has remained unchanged throughout my life. A lot of things change in life as we move forward …people, places, and things… but some things remain the same. And my morning coffee ritual is one of the constants. The end is nigh if that ever changes…
And here's a related piece:
We're still drinking our morning coffee as the noon hour passes... and we still have two cups to go before the pot is done. Some days I can go almost directly from the morning coffee to Happy Hour. Not all that often, mind you... just occasionally. It looks to be a near-run thing today.

So... thinkin' about Sunday Mornings Past... I found myself wishing I was here:

That would be the front door to my apartment in San Ramon, California, about seven or eight years ago. One of the better things about that apartment was its location, specifically the fact it was but a four minute (or less) walk from that door to the local Starbucks. I used to spend Sunday mornings sitting on the patio of that Starbucks with a couple o' three cups of The Daily Brew and the Sunday New York Times.

(Aside: I never did any of those frou-frou drinks, like "a Soy Caramel Macchiato with a double shot, Barista, if you please." Nope. That ain't me. But I
did read a frou-frou paper on the weekends, dontcha know. This being before the WSJ started publishing weekend editions.)

Anyhoo... It took me near forever to read the paper on those sultry Sunday mornings past, coz the people watching was so good. Not up to European cafe standards, but pretty danged close. Especially the women (and this is where the "sultry" adjective comes in) -- there's a reason Brian Wilson and Mike Love wrote "I wish they all could be California Girls." The boys most certainly did have a point.

There have been other Sunday morning places that were every bit the equal of San Ramon, but let's not jog too far down Memory Lane. One should live in the present, no?
Why coffee?  Because we're getting ready to pour our second cup, right now.  I've slept until noon or past every single day this week.  I know why, but I ain't tellin'.  Yet. 

Thursday, January 24, 2013


You Gentle Readers know I took issue with the over-the-top nature of the El-Eh Kings' recent banner raising ceremony.  That stands coz the whole thing, viewed in its entirety, most certainly WAS excess, defined.  But this?  This is pretty cool:

The h/t goes to Wyshynski

A Re-Run

I went lookin' for sumthin' on the blog to support a post I have in mind and found this, from my very early blogging days (i.e., mid-2006):

Your Five Variable Love Profile

Propensity for Monogamy:

Your propensity for monogamy is low.
You see love as a gift that you should give to many.
It's hard for you to imagine being with one person at at time... Let alone one person for the rest of your life!

Experience Level:

Your experience level is high.
You've loved, lost, and loved again.
You have had a wide range of love experiences.
And when the real thing comes along, you know it!


Your dominance is low.
This doesn't mean you're a doormat, just balanced.
You know a relationship is not about getting your way.
And you love to give your sweetie a lot of freedom.


Your cynicism is low.
You are an eternal optimist when it comes to love and romance.
No matter how many times you've been hurt - you're never bitter.
You believe in one true love, your perfect soulmate.
And if you haven't found true love yet, you know you will soon.


Your independence is low.
This doesn't mean you're dependent in relationships..
It does mean that you don't have any problem sharing your life.
In your opinion, the best part of being in love is being together.

I call Bullshit. I find most of these quizzes quite fun and entertaining; this one is simply annoying. So why am I posting it? Just to see if others' reactions are similar to mine. For the record:

My propensity for monogamy is pretty damned high… higher than most, I’d wager. The Second Mrs. Pennington and I were married for 20 years and were together for 23. I’d still be married if I had my druthers. And it wasn’t hard at all for me to “imagine being with one person at a time… Let alone for the rest of your (my) life.” I was extremely comfortable with monogamy; it was a natural state. And I’ve always been a serial-lover, that is: one at a time. Now the time may have been pretty short on occasion, but it was still “one at a time.” For what that’s worth.

No quibbles with experience level. I made the most of life before marrying TSMP; I made extensive attempts at getting back in the game after her.

No quibbles with the quiz’s take on my dominance, or lack of same. I do have issues with bondage, though.

My cynicism is high. I am not an eternal optimist when it comes to romance. Au contraire, mon frêre. My glass isn’t half-empty, it’s Sahara-desert dry. With calcite rings. “Never bitter?” Oh, spare me, please. I won’t go down that road, but… (I’m sure you get my drift) I DO believe in the soul mate thingie. Unfortunately that wasn’t a mutually-shared perception. True love found, true love lost, game over.

My independence level is high. Take my word for it.

OK, two agreed areas, three areas in violent disagreement. Ergo, Bullshit. Your mileage may vary, of course. Let me know…
Comment on the original post was pretty light given I had all of about three readers in the Early Days.  The link is still good, so play along if'n ya wanna.

I'm gonna save that other post I was thinkin' about for a day or two coz I'm feelin' the need to get outdoors and take advantage of this break in the weather while I still can.  Beer Me!

Only Hockey Fans Will Get This


Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Apropos o' Not Much

Oh, Man... is it BEAUTIFUL outdoors!  Witness:

We've already set a record for this day, as shown below.

I gotta send Sheik al-Gore a thank-you note.  Coz we're lovin' this Global Warming... err... climate change... stuff.  Yes indeedy, we most certainly ARE.

Small Stuff

A short outgoing e-mail:
Buck Pennington
1:38 PM (6 minutes ago)

to (a bunch of Occasional Correspondents)
74 deleted messages in this conversation.

It's time for this thread to DIE.
I'm being spammed by my friends.  And in the same vein... I've often thought G+ needs a -1 button in addition to the ubiquitous +1.  There's just as much inanity on G+ as there is on Failbook, but at least there aren't any stupid Mafia or Wanna-Bee-Farmer games.  I'm thankful for that.

They Still Got It

My heroes...

Hell, every Old Fart should appreciate this, if not for the music then simply for the fact that a bunch o' mid-sixties geezers... nearly 70, in Jagger's case... can still get up there and boogie.  

If you're an old Stones fan there's also this:  Ain't it GOOD to see Mick Taylor playin' with 'em again?

I Have NO Doubt...

... but I didn't watch it, so I don't know.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Broadening Our Horizons, Episode LII

We've got chick flicks, chick cars, and now chick cigars...

See the bottom entry from Tina E., above, and click to embiggen if'n you can't read the copy.  Our latest cigar shipment was one of those 15-cigar samplers you see at lower left, which we bought mainly coz we love three of the five featured cigars, to wit: the Opulence 3, Red Eye, and the Dirt Torpedo... all of which have graced these pages before.  

That said, we're just in from the verandah where we put fire to one of those Moontrance sticks during today's Happy Hour.  I gotta say I really, rilly like the cigar.  One might could make the argument that the Moontrance would be a chick cigar, what with those Pina Colada like flavors, but I'm thinkin' those of us who enjoy gettin' outside the box will enjoy it, too... I certainly did, and I'm not alone.  My only criticism of this cigar is it's too damned short, what with it lasting only as long as it took me to finish my first beer.

But that's OK, coz it gives me an excuse to fire up a Red Eye to complete Happy Hour.  And we shall do just that... just as soon as I hit "Publish."

No Cigar

That's as in "close, but..." Blog-Bud Old AF Sarge posted this over at The Lexicans:

The comments to his post are fairly entertaining.  I gave some serious thought about reactivating my FB account simply to join the Lexicans' FB page... but I just CAN'T.  Call me a curmudgeon, call me a Luddite, call me anti-social.  I don't care WHAT you call me, just don't call me "late for dinner."  Or Happy Hour.

Why yes, Gentle Reader... I really don't have much today.  Why do ya ask?

I think it's coz I've been sleeping waaay too late for the last couple o' few.

Monday, January 21, 2013


Speakin' of working class (see immediately below)... there's this: the last of our self-gifts, Christmas Edition, arrived today... which I shall model for you now.  Like this:

That's me in a chambray work shirt, which was part and parcel of our civilian uniform back in those halcyon days of the '70s.  I prolly had... at any given point in time... at least five blue chambray work shirts in my wardrobe during those years... some embroidered, most not.  Because that's what we DID, back then.  I got it in my head that we should add one of those shirts to our wardrobe, seein' as how we've been bereft of any like item for at least 20 years or so.  And we ordered one such from LL Bean, not payin' much attention to what we were ordering.

So imagine my surprise when the shirt arrived today and I opened the package to find the shirt is of the button-down variety, to wit, this:

And that's just WRONG.  NO working class person would EVER entertain wearing a BUTTON-DOWN work shirt.  Not once, not ever.  But we'll keep the shirt as it fits well and is of the usual Bean quality, which is to say: good.

We'll just hope people don't recognize and smirk at the poseur nature of the shirt when we're out and about.  But **I'll** know and it grieves me so.  Because I'm all about authenticity, even if I'm not all that authentic when it comes to "working class."

Today's Happy Hour Soundtrack

Timely and topical... Pete Anderson:

They used to call us working class
We're just not working any more
The working class failed their test this past November.  And now you can reap what ya sow, fuckers.

A Different Sorta Hockey Post

The Beloved Wings play their home opener tomorrow night, what with opening on the road because... in part... of the Detroit Auto Show.  And there's this, about that:

That's a time lapse of JLA being turned back into a hockey rink from auto show venue, courtesy of The Detroit News... and hockey blogger Greg WyshynskiI loves me some time-lapse photography, especially when it has something to do with other loves o' mine.

Oblivious By Design

I hear there's sumthin' happening in DeeSee today... about which, this:

That looks like me where said event is concerned.  There was a hockey game on this afternoon but I think it's over now.

It doesn't really matter... we stayed abed until noon-thirty today and are just now pouring our second cup.  Sometimes it bees like that.

PS:  That photo?  An Honorable Mention in the "Nature" category of NatGeo's 2012 annual photo contest.  You can see all the photos here.

Update, 1515 hrs: A tweet from David Burge:
David Burge ‏@iowahawkblog

Like listening to cannibals say grace while they lower you into the pot. #inauguration
Yup.  Egg-zactly.  We shall now proceed to drink. Heavily. 

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Today's Happy Hour Soundtrack and a Diversion

It's yet another twofer... first there's Freddie king with the most widely known version of this tune:

And then there's Jeff Beck and Co...

Both versions are worthy but there's this lil mondegreen that I had, concerning this:
Let me down
And close that box car door
Yes, let me down
And close that box car door
Well, I'm goin' back to Chattanooga
And sleep on sister Irene's door
Enter the diversion... In that I heard "door" as "floor," which brought to mind the fact that sleepin' on the floor ain't all THAT bad.  As a s'matter o' fact sleepin' on the floor can be quite good.  Case in point:

That would be YrHmblScrb sitting in a futon... on the floor... in a household in Japan just prior to "lights out."  Which is only ONE of the many times I slept on the floor in a futon.  The Second Mrs. Pennington and I began our lives together sleeping in a futon on the floor of her apartamento in Musashi-Koganei and spent an additional five years... at LEAST... sleeping on futons in various and sundry other places (about which: no photos exist, to the best of my knowledge).  Hell, futons and I go WAY back, and some of my best memories are wrapped up there.  Door, floor.  What the hell, it's all good.

I Got Nuthin'

Well, next to nuthin'.  An Occasional Correspondent sent along the following with a simple "This ain't you, is it?" query.

I replied "No, but it sure could have been at some point in the way-back."  Case in point:

That hat got a lot of wear when I lived in Ra-cha-cha.

Minor bitchin', pissin', and moanin':  The Wings game was blacked out in my area last night which was prolly a good thing, given they got their asses whupped by the Blues, 5-0.  We won't draw any conclusions from one game, especially one game after a tremendously long layoff.  But this is NOT an auspicious beginning.

Now if you'll excuse me I'm gonna to go sit on the oh-so-sunny verandah and enjoy a wonderful 63-degree day.  With beer.

Saturday, January 19, 2013


So we kicked off the 2012-2013 hockey season this afternoon by watching the El-Eh Kings Stanley Cup Championship banner-raising ceremony.  About which, the title to this post: excess.  I've watched a lot of banner-raising ceremonies in my time but NEVER have I ever seen one as wretched as this one.  First there was the usual, customary, and quite reasonable "tribute to the season" video on the jumbotron, and then things went off the rails.   By that I mean the Kings organization proceeded to introduce everyone on staff... including the equipment managers, bag-toters, trainers (every damned one of 'em), and the coaching staff... which would be akin to introducing the key grip and the caterers at the Oscar ceremony for Best Picture.  At least they didn't introduce the Zamboni drivers and the ice girls, for which I'm thankful, indeed.  Then the announcer introduced the team, which is pretty normal.  But in keeping with El-Eh glitter, Our Man introduced the team... by number... and had them skate out and receive their Stanley Cup rings from the owner's wife.  ALL of 'em, individually.  Then we had the ceremonial arrival of The Cup which is normal, once again, but this time El-Eh proceeded to introduce the team a SECOND time as they passed The Cup from player to player while skating it around the periphery of the arena.  I know people in El-Eh have short attention spans but they couldn't POSSIBLY have forgotten the players' names in that short period of time.

By this time I'm thinking "just raise the frickin' banner, already!"  But there was more.  The championship banner was hauled out by the mother, father, and eight year old brother of a victim of the Newtown shootings, the connection being the eight year old boy plays hockey.  Forgive me for this, Gentle Reader, but that was the point when I went "WTF?"  Seriously.  I could see the Bruins, or even the Rangers, doin' something like this because of a regional connection... but LA?  Over 3,000 miles away from Newtown?  That was just too damned maudlin and too damned much.  Sue me if you feel differently.

So, the banner was finally raised and the game got under way.  I said a small prayer to The Deity At Hand along the lines of "Please, Dear God... let them LOSE."  And the Deity, she answered my prayers... Chicago 5, El-Eh 2.  Just desserts.

A final thought, which also occurred to me during the ceremony:  For GOD'S sake, act as if you've been here before.  And then I remembered: they haven't been here before.  I suppose it's hard to get it right the first time.  Nonetheless: what a sad spectacle.