Wednesday, November 23, 2005

MMMM...what's in this? My body is telling me it's not natural.

okay, so if you've been reading my blog you know I'm probably not the best, in fact I don't really cook much past grilled cheese. But grilled cheese beats many things in my opinion. Case and point: the picture of the beans above which look like their hatching larva. AHHH - I feel a story coming on: One time, at band camp...(wait - that's a different story). One time, in high school, I was babysitting for this family. I rode home with them from school and the mom fixed dinner before they left. I was downstairs playing with the 5 kids (yeah, 5) and this awful odor began waffing downstairs. It smelled like hot, dog-poo on a grill, topped with something worse than curry. I thought to myself, "Surely that's not dinner - the disposal must have backed up, or she's changing the baby. Not dinner." But soon enough, the kids and I found out that we were being treated to canned beans mixed with hot dog chunks. I'm telling you, these weren't normal beans. They must have been generic beans from the discount rack that she bought just before the can exploded from botulism. What is botulism? Click on the beans above and read up, it's an exciting disease. Anyway, by the time dinner was ready the house was filled with this overwhelming smell that almost make me sick. I vividly remember as we prayed, I bowed my head toward my bowl and almost fainted. So, then I started reasoning with myself: "I'm sure it won't actually taste like what it smells like" and it didn't - it was worse. The first bite caused my body to involuntarily convulse. Long story short, I didn't chew. I just put it in my mouth and swallowed. That my friends, was perhaps the worst experience I've ever had with food.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Some people should just listen

It seems that some people think just because they're at a Karaoke party (or bar, depending on your style), that the HAVE to sing. Let me set you straight - if you can't sing, it's not fun for anyone. A wise man once said, "Better to be thought of as a fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubt". Aaahhh, wise words. I think my favorite part about karaoke is that there are two kinds of people: drunk and sober. The drunk people lose their sense of tone, rhythm, and self respect. If these people could carry a tune at one time, all bets are off after a few adult beverages. Then, there's actually two types of sober people: "professional" singers who haven't quite made it and the only audience that can get to clap for them is a bunch of drunks, and then very confident people who don't care that they can't sing, but know they'll have a fighting chance against the drunk singers. It's really a vicious cycle of lose-lose for everyone within earshot. Okay, I guess there's one more type now that I think about it: the kind who know they can't sing, so they digress to physical humor like dancing on tables and getting down on one knee while they sing love songs to a very unimpressed female customer in the front row. It's like watching American Idol - some of them can REALLY sing, but the ones who can't...why haven't their friends told them? Certainly, there's validity in encouraging your friends, but if they can't sing and are about to humiliate themselves publicly (i.e. American Idol), maybe it's time you had a heart-to-heart, candid conversation with them first. Some people should just listen.

Thursday, November 17, 2005


I know what your thinking - BUBBLE BOY!?! No, not Bubble Boy, just some looney who is selling a Two-Pack of Eighty Inch Balloons! High Quality “Climb Inside” Latex Balloons. Almost 7 Feet In Diameter! Your Choice of Clear or White"
I don't get it. How do people sell this stuff? This is currently on eBay so rush over and bid on it after you've read my blog. I've recently signed up for eBay and am selling random pieces of junk in my house. I had never bought or sold anything on eBay, so I figured it was time. I guess what it really comes down to is that I'm home for almost a month and a half without having to travel. I'm not sure what to do with myself although I suppose there are more productive things.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

"I can actually hear you getting fatter"

Yes, a classic line from Tommy Boy rings all-too-true the last few days of travel. I've discovered new food options available to Americans. First of all, I was in Wisconsin today (I sat in O'hare from 6:30pm - 11:30pm waiting for my plane to Wisconsin, but that's another story). Anyway, while I sat in O'hare I talked to some other passengers waiting for the Green Bay flight. We got on the topic of cheees curds and what a wonderful "treat" they are. They told us we HAD to have fried cheese curds before we left. I know it doesn't sound good, but I'm sure it's not. Then, one of our customers today was confirming how wonderful cheese curds are and said, "sometimes they sqeak on your teeth when you chew them." Raise your hand if this really sounds good? Hmmmm, Hmmmm. At first, I didn't think they sounded good, but the "sqeaking" on my teeth captured me. ARE YOU KIDDING! I still have yet to try these and it's not a life goal at this point. Here's a pic of a cheese curd if you still had any doubts.
Anyway, now I'm in Cincinnati, OH where they are known for their chili. But here's the gross part: they have fastfood chili resturants where that's all they serve (Skyline and Goldstar are the main two). These people eat large bowls of chili as a meal, but not just chili. They start by putting pasta noodles in a bowl, add some chili, then cheese, then stop your heart, pull out the paddles, CLEAR, restart, more cheese, topped with chili and heartburn. Rumor is that the chili itself contains chocolate and cinnamon, and is a sweet-chili. Also (and this is my favorite part) you can ask for a 3-way, 4-way or 5-way. 3-way: pasta, chili, cheese. 4-way: add either onions or red beans, and 5-way: everything. Please, anyone from Wisconsin or Ohio tell me why either of these are tempting.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

On the Mafia hitlist

Chicago has to be one of the greatest cities. Excellent food, great shopping (apparently), and the Mafia. Yes, I'm in Chicago (again) for a conference which ended tonight. Me and a few coworkers ended the night with drinks and cigars at the bar, which was fun and low key. Last night however was much more adventurous. You see, I have to set the story up: last year when I was here, I went to a local Chicago Italian restaurant with my boss. As we sat there eating our lunch, we noticed this place was authentic, down to the table of "the family" in the back smoking cigars and talking about how "business" was going (not necessarily at the food business). Anyway, the longer we stayed the more "family" showed up and pretty soon we were the only customers in the restaurant. The waiter was very nice to us, but was subtly suggesting we leave as he showed the men arriving into a private room off to the side. All that said, it was quite the experience and we figured we should leave while we could. So, back to the present, we told our sales team about this place and they decided they wanted to go check it out. So last night, 10 of us went there for dinner. All was going well until our CEO decided to make the hilarious comment to one of the owners, "We came to see the Mafia!" Our jaws dropped and our lives flashed before our eyes is disbelief at his comment. Also, the owner was not amused by his comment and got this look in his eye like, "Eat up - it's you last meal". So, for the rest of the night we feared any special invitations to "come see the kitchen" or "take a tour of the city, ending at the lake".
Lesson learned: Don't make Mafia jokes when the Mafia is standing right there.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Jarhead - Keep your money

I was one of the few that went and saw Jarhead tonight at the theater. If you have $8 in your pocket that you don't want, here are a couple of options instead of going to Jarhead: 1) Send it to me 2) go buy a lotto ticket 3) simply flush it (not recommended). Basically, I thought the movie would be a little more action-oriented. Rather, it shows the life of a Marine during Operation Desert Storm. If they had taken out all the language and sex scenes, it would have been a rather short and dull film. Instead, it was long, dull, and crass. I just wanted to go to a movie and I thought it looked like the only decent one out right now - I was wrong.
It cetainly shows you the mundane life and daily activities of soldiers "waiting for war" and how that literally drives them insane. And, I guess if it's important to you, you get to see this no-name actor with his shirt off. Unfortunately, you get to see a lot more than that. REALLY - send me your money.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Always up for something new

Well, I DJ'd a wedding tonight - that's a first. I used to be a radio DJ in college and I've emceed various events, but never a wedding. It was a small wedding so I was actually the sound guy too (which I didn't know until I arrived). No problem. I'm always up for a challenge. The bride would probably freak out if she new before hand that I had never set up sound equipment by myself. I just showed up and started plugging wires into various sockets in which they looked like they might fit. It's like that toy you had when you were a kid where you have to fit the right shape into the right space. Yeah. I've learned that if you don't know what you're doing, just do it confidently and no one knows:) Anyway, I guess it was a success because it went smoothly, people had a good time, and I got lots of compliments. So, I guess I have a new talent. Anyone need a DJ?

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Airplane Etiquette - Don't Sneeze in the Magazine

I just returned home (Colorado Springs) from a trip to Nashville and realized how disgusting people are sometimes. As I watched people on the plane, I realized two major things: 1) the cold is going around 2) People like to find ways to share. On the front cover of Hemispheres Magazine (provided by United) it says, "Your Free Copy", but after seeing how people used this magazine, I don't think anyone in their right mind would take it home or even pick it up. I noticed one older man reading this magazine and apparently he felt a sneeze coming on. So, in his moment of panic he quickly brought the magazine up to his face and used it as a sneeze guard. He might as well have finished it off by blowing his nose in it. Then, another individual was having similar issues and found that clearing his nasal passages with his finger was the best option. Unfortunately, Kleenex is not provided along with your free pretzels and Pepsi, but he found the magazine was a great backup for those pesky boogers. So, next time you see "Your Free Copy" you may want to just think about what the magazine might contain - it's far more than just travel tips.