A Puzzling Trade Association Custom

I have just got back from what I find to be a puzzling trade association custom, the stuffing party. Or, perhaps it is just the custom where I work, and other trade associations have more sense about this sort of thing.

What you do, see, is you get a group of people into a big room, and some of these people earn $30 an hour for their jobs, and some of these people earn like $110 an hour for their jobs. So what you do is you have these people stuff envelopes, which is something you could be paying another group of people like $15 an hour to do.

It always confounds me, but I usually put in an hour or so anyway. I figure it’s entertaining to watch a group of people get vastly overpaid to do shit work.

Anyway, happy halloween, and happy birthday also to Kevin Pollak. I am reminded today that the photograph that heads this stupid blog is of me in a fabulous Halloween costume conceived and sewn by that lady who doesn’t eat onions. Thanks Mom.

Touristing With The Matriarchs

I do not understand people who do not eat onions and, to a lesser extent, people who do not enjoy spicy food.

For me, food that stirs senses other than the bland buds on the tongue is amazing. If it pours an aroma down my nose or excites the back of my throat or gives me tears and demands a quench, if its flavors are motley and challenging, then it is delightful. And I find onions delicious, especially when complimenting other flavors, such as that of meat. Rarely do I cook anything without starting by chopping an onion, and when I do chop the onion, I whistle. It cuts down on the tears. Honest.

My mother and my grandmother, they do not enjoy spicy food and my mother will not eat onions. Her eyes well up just by her saying the word “onions.” It is a shame because it causes her I suspect to miss out on reading the most celebrated online satire publication ever. They were in town this last weekend, and my Grandmother asked me to take them to my very favorite restaurant in the world, but I could not, because they can’t eat the Salvadoran food.

I had unfortunately purchased TourMobile tickets ahead of time and they were not transferable, so we ended up doing much of our touristing Friday, the day the Good Lord at last opted to give us buckets and truckloads of rain. But we did okay. We saw the Lincoln, the Vietnam, and the real reason for the tour, to see the WWII. It’s a big glorious memorial and it made my Grandma weepy. And we got wet. But we survived.

We visited America in Union Station for lunch. My ordering the N’awlins Red Rice and Beans with Andoullie Sawsage inspired my Grandma to do the same. She of course took one bite and determined that it would not suit her, so she grabbed half of mama’s sandwich. To the restaurant’s credit: The waitress offered unsolicited to remove my Grandma’s untouched dish from the bill. I did not have the same problem. I inhaled my dish with wine. It was delicious.

As a bonus, we jumped off the bus at the last minute to see the Jeff, which is my personal favorite. Saturday there was not much time for me to tourist since I had to pre-clean for the maid, so they toured Ye Olde Towne via the Torpedo Factory and such. Sunday, I drove AWAY from the Marine Corps marathonors to the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, where we spent several hours looking at flying things. It was a lovely weekend that made me realize that I could perhaps learn to be a better tourist in my own backyard, as I’m sure could many D.C. people. There is so much offered living here, so much to do, so much to see.

Editor, Express:

THE THIRD WORST thing that could happen by your forcing the Metro train doors open is that you might find yourself a Darwin Awards nominee, killing or injuring yourself via your own brutish stupidity.

The second worst thing that could happen is that you could achieve such a status not only for yourself but for the pack of idiots you are trying to help rush the Metro train doors. They are foolishly trusting your physical mettle as much as you do, and if you fail you’re not just responsible for hurting yourself; you are responsible for hurting them, too.

However, the worst thing that could happen is that you could make me and several hundred, perhaps several thousand, late to work. Foolish feats of strength such as the one I witnessed this morning are often why Metro trains end up stuck.

Please, mister: Don’t try to force the train doors open again.

Aaron B. Pryor
Arlington, Va.

Put All Your Eggs In One Basket And Then Watch That Basket!!!

I have not decided yet if Marnie Stern is my cup of tea. I enjoy listening to “In Advance of the Broken Arm” just because I imagine that people around me might just think I have discovered recordings of space aliens. It is interesting stuff and is one album that might actually just stretch one’s comprehension of the music language a bit.