At least he didn't eat the sofa…

My girl, her housemate and I returned to her house Saturday night apprehensive. Said housemate has a big floppy mutt (previously pictured here, but he’s a lot bigger now) that she figures has some Great Dane in him, and, well, as they say in the South, bless his heart.

They were apprehensive because he tends to eat furniture. They walked in and were very happy to find that he had not eaten any furniture. Then they explored the rest of the house.

He had eaten a copy of the housemate’s dissertation and had laid a turd in the middle of the kitchen.

I wish I could say I had come up with something as witty on the spot as to lean down to the beast, pet him on the head, and to say, “Not so crazy about the dissertation, eh, buddy?” No, I just thought of that this morning. Damnit. Instead, all I could think to point out was how glad these two were that the dog hadn’t eaten any furniture. But. But. But. But.

But he SHIT in your KITCHEN! That’s like the worst thing a dog can do! I don’t think they quite grasped that. I think perhaps the neo-medieval code of “you don’t shit where you eat” is something that only rings genuinely true if you’re a fella. And I can’t tell you how this real-life representation of this metaphor tickled me.

Over and Over

Attention, practitioners of the American English language: Can we please stop using the word “over,” which most directly is meant to explain a specific spatial relationship, when you mean to say “more than,” which is meant to explain a specific relationship regarding amount?

No, goddamnit, Takeru Kobayashi did not eat “over” 40 hot dogs in 12 minutes to win the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog Eating Contest this year. He ate “more than” 40 hot dogs. When you say that Kobayashi ate “over” 40 hot dogs, I imagine 40 hot dogs on the floor and Kobayashi hovering over (you see?) them while eating a TV dinner.

“More than.” Say it with me. “Mooooooore thaaaaaaan.” Very good.

Because you’re on TV, dummy. I watched Network again last night. That is such an incredible movie. The folks who made it told the future, didn’t they? You have to keep slapping yourself on the back of the head to remind yourself that this movie was made WELL BEFORE television ever had anything like The Howard Biehl Show on the air. Don’t even get me started about the movie’s commentary about Saudi ownership of the U.S. of A.

The Dude Abides

We decided last weekend that the groom was, indeed, “The Dude.” It’s the hair, I guess. And the attitude. It was a nice wedding. Sorry about denting your open bar bill so badly, dude. Thank goodness there was a nice big bed after.

This Otto crashed the reception. That was funny. Overheard him talking to a waiter. “So, like, what, you just have a happy hour right now or something?” he said. The waiter explained to him that all of these people dressed up in monkeysuits were there for a wedding reception. Oops.

I was winner of the Ralph Wiggum Award for the weekend. The elevators at the Marriott made a funny, metallic noise when they arrived at the floor. “It’s like a robotic elevator or something,” I said, realizing in the next beat that, actually, an elevator kind of IS a robot. I swear to gosh I’m really smarter than that.

We lunched at a Retarded Wendy’s. It’s like a normal Wendy’s except that everyone who is working there appears to be “special.” I swear, these are people who should be wearing helmets, always. Not fast food, but food served slowly and without any sort of system to expedite efficiency. I swear I’m going to book a bus and bring 150 people there sometime for lunch, just to see what happens. I will, however, suggest that everyone pack a lunch.

It was a very nice weekend, so nice I’m still thinking about it. The dude abides.

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It's Geena…not Gina

From a friend, regarding Commander In Chief

I believe you called Geena Davis’s new show a lumpy sugar turd because its writing is not up to WW level. “An Hour I’ll Never Get Back.” You didn’t even spell the woman’s name right. For once I wish you could look at the big picture. I like to think of things in terms of “The Cause.” You are one of the people who can see the injustice in the democratic system when 56% of its citizens are denied access to the highest office? I would have sworn you were, but maybe I’m wrong. The show is by no means glaringly bad. It continues to dominate its timeslot, the reviews are rather good & its viewership is increasing. Yes, it is not as well made as the Sheen Show, but it is about a woman as the Chief Executive Officer. At the very very least, it serves to desensitize the public to the notion of a woman as Prez. It plants a wonderful seed. For the first time in history, there are two viable female candidates that are being seriously considered & a drama on TV that tries to show the possibility. Tabloids, news shows & talk shows are discussing the issue. It’s not the content of the show, my friend, it is its concept that is important. It is not particularly well-done, but its message is loud & strong….& millions are watching. It represents the concept well. Despite its shortcomings, Donald fucking Sutherland is in it. They could have him balance on a giant ball in a tutu while juggling & he’s still going to lend class, dignity & talent to the project. Geena ain’t no slouch either, let her settle into this part. She’s a member of MENSA….she’ll work it out.

Now, do you think your snippy little comments helped or hurt “The Cause”? The show helps it, you hurt the show….do the math. I love reading your opinions & most often agree with them. When it came to this one, I wish you had just kept your mouth shut & sat there & looked pretty.

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Note to self: Please stop hearing “Ain’t No Stopping Us Now” on the radio and insisting that it is sung by a band called “TSOP.” That is incorrect. This song is performed by McFadden and Whitehead. “TSOP” was a song, the theme to “Soul Train,” in fact. Silly.

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R.I.P. Scratchy

There is a tool that exists that is perfect for digging a deep hole deep into North Carolina clay. It is a steel-cast heavy pick that you can lift up and use gravity to do some of the work for you. It has a blunt-sharp end and it’s taller than you unless you’re Shaq.

Me and my buddy walked into a Home Depot in Concord, N.C., looking for such an implement Monday morning. We needed it to dig a grave for a cat.

Yes, I happened to show up the weekend his boy Scratchy decided to exhibit his swan song.

You see a cat who is doing his best not to be seen in broad daylight, and you see a cat who is ailing and ready to go. Sunday afternoon, he was sprawled out in the neighbors’ yard, convinced that nobody could see him.

By Sunday night, he was cooped up in his own litter box, which is where they found him ten minutes before he gave up the ghost. Which led my friend to have to make a seemingly immediate decision while he was in the first moments of grief, what to do with the shell now that his little monkey had left it. I’ll never forget the impossibly silent forever while he sat with his friend wrapped up in a towel, both shrieking inside and trying to lay plans.

His wife and I steered him from floodlights and trying to dig right that moment. He will keep, and you need to say goodbye in daylight, that’s all I could think while I sat on that couch across from them. He and I later toasted his boy, a fascinating feline in his prime, truly tolerant and beautiful and funny and love.

But when they pulled him out from his box and set him on the ground, it was pretty clear he was in his last minutes. This old boy looked like a newborn kitten, his eyes big and wide and unsure of his step. He was shortly wrapped in a towel and brought upstairs, only to say goodbye.

I was rooting that night for cremation, an easier solution, but my buddy kept saying he’s always seen burial at his home.

I was wrong. Not that I had a right to harbor an opinon, which is why I only whispered it that night. It was up to him, and he was right. I dug a little, but he dug mostly, and it took hours and hours and a trip to Home Depot and hours more.

But my friend will always know he took the trouble to commit his little man to the earth. That he made an effort. That he fought for something, even if the fight was only against the cement-hard clay of the planet. That he did something for Scratchy.

God bless Scratchy. Meow.

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…or whatever it’s called…

Dear Dr./Gov. Dean,

I am a proud Democrat but I cannot help but laugh nonstop regarding your use of a certain colloquialism on “Hardball” last evening. I wanted to help you with the following advice.

First off, I imagine that Mrs./Dr. Dean is getting pretty darned tired of you grabbing her by the elbow and saying, hey, baby, let’s you and me go and exercise our executive privilege, and then making that wink-wink noise. No, Doc, that’s not what the kids are calling it these days. So stop it. Just stop it.

Further bits of advice for you, with all due respect:

  • You probably should not refer to President Bush’s plan to overhaul Social Security with private investment accounts as the “horizontal rumba.”
  • Please stop referring to the 2000 presidential primary as a “Mongolian clusterfuck.” While this phrase is a completely accurate characterization of that primary, it is entirely inappropriate to say it in front of cameras.
  • Calling the Bush administration’s domestic policy a “Cleveland steamer” is perfectly acceptable, anytime, anywhere.
  • Under no circumstances, I repeat, under no circumstances, should you refer to the Title IX Education Amendments of 1972 as “reverse cowgirl.”

I hope you have found this information helpful.