Friday, October 31, 2008

I don't understand the desire

I have students who have expressed a desire to read this blog. I'm not sure why. I guess they figure I'll reveal something super shocking. Or they really are that curious to peek behind the curtains and see the side of me that I don't show in the classroom.

Of course I play it up as though what they'd find here is terribly revealing. It sure will be a sad day for them if they ever make it here and learn just how boring and self indulgent this really is.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Not my fault!

I'm not exactly what one would call skilled at mechanics. I'm much better at what some would call bodging. Or trial and error. Wife worries when I try to work on the scooters because some times things go well but more often things go wrong and I learn the hard way that's not how to fix something. Then there is swearing and anger and sweat.

And more swearing. I know I wrote that already but it needs repeating because there is often a lot of it. I'm more skilled at it than I am at things mechanical.

It is for this reason that I no longer own any vintage bikes or scooters. In order to learn how things work I run the risk of doing more harm than good.

So recently there have been two things that needed fixing but I couldn't get it taken care of myself. But each time I've been vindicated in the end.

First our bathroom sink kept getting clogged up. Over and over I would treat it and plunge it and get it draining for a little while but it would clog again. I finally got so frustrated I called in the landlord. It turns out that the pipes are so old that 80 years of iron flaking off the sides of the pipe had fused in to a solid plug of metal. It took several days for the landlord and a plumber to cut the pipe out and replace it. No way I could have fixed that.

Then this week I put a new back rest on my scooter. It was getting near dusk when I went to put it on. Wife actually said I shouldn't because it was getting late and she was worried there would be anger.

While I was removing some old bolts that needed to be replaced I did manage to strip it. Luckily I was able to attach the back rest temporarily and arrange to have the stripped bolt removed at a friend's house. He has elite mechanic skills.

I went over there today to get it taken care of. He used a tap and die to try and get it out and snapped on him. The bolt was so locked in that it broke the tool. He ended up having to file down the head of the bolt so he could grab it with pliers to force it out.

After it was all over I said that at least now I know it wasn't my fault the bolt got stripped by the allen wrench. He said, "Oh yeah, that wasn't operator error." Not my fault seldom sounds so sweet.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

White trash weekend

I should have written this when the memories were more fresh but last weekend was too entertaining not to mention.

Friday night Wife was having a girl's weekend. So I was free to feed myself and decided to do the buffet at national chain chicken shack. I'm a sucker for original recipes. We named our scooter club the KFSC for a reason after all.

Chicken buffet in a southern town is an adventure during normal times. But this night was especially spectacular. There was the usual assortment of the average and the overweight. And the expected moment where someone feels that the buffet isn't being refilled fast enough and starts complaining to everyone else in line loudly until finally one of the wage slaves puts out more chicken legs.

But there were a couple of extra folks that took it beyond the call of duty. There was grizzled guy in Chicago Bulls tank top with a buzz cut complimented by a glorious rat tail mullet. Normally that would be a sure winner for king of the rednecks. But not that night.

There was even more grizzled guy. The kind of grizzled where he could 40 or he could be nearing 60. You can't quite tell. He had a very dirty cast on his left leg. And no shoe on the other foot. Did he decide that it was wearing shoes that led to the accident and broken bone in the first place? Or did he feel that folks who are suffering with injuries are excused from such things as common decency? Or sanitation? I have to admit I'm leaning towards the latter because both he and his female "companion" kept reusing their plates. Paper plates if you couldn't guess. And there were numerous signs reminding patrons that you really should take a new plate every time. And there was a stack of paper plates they had to walk past every time they returned to the steam trays.

Seriously, reusing paper plates at a fast food joint buffet, who does that?

Then Saturday I went to Biketoberfest. Too many things to mention. The bikini bar maids. The right wing bikers advertising for the republicans. The born again bikers. The offensive tshirts ("Forget your tits, show me your pussy" being particularly memorable). The offensive women's underwear for sale. The racist tshirts. The biker "babes" who spent too many years on the back of a motorcycle in the wind and sun. The biker babes who will hopefully learn to protect their skin from the ravages of sun and wind. The camp site with the stripper pole out front. Goodtimes. Oh, and you have to love the ladies with meth mouth. Sexxxy.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

They say bad things come in threes

So we've gone past that since August. First Bernie Mac.

Then Jerry Reed.

Then Paul Newman.

Now the news that Rudy Ray "Dolemite" Moore has died. All you need to know about him is this quote from the movie The Human Tornado (1976), "He think he's bad and ain't got no class! I'm gon' rock this shotgun up his muthafuckin' ass!"

I realize death is a part of life and all that but with these four deaths the world has gotten a lot less masculine. To truly honor Rudy Ray, go put your foot up a sucker's ass.

The "ballad" of Dolemite. Respect that.

Friday, October 10, 2008

A little something for the randy lads

A very good friend of mine has a son that is now a senior in high school. So I asked him if they had had "the talk". He said his son was resistant to such attempts. The old "get embarrassed and then claim you knew all you need to know" routine. So my friend asked if I wanted to have the talk with the son.

Well, why not. I'm a man of the world. Before Wife came in to my life I entertained a few members of the fairer sex. So I compiled a list of things I have learned in my travels. Now I share some of that with you. Perhaps in the comments you might share a bit of your wisdom with the world. Or request further postings of my knowledge.

Heck, perhaps we'll turn this in to a regular thing where I answer questions for the love lorn. I am a professor after all.

Things a young man about town should know:

Theater chicks are hot and are likely to put out due to self-esteem and daddy issues. They are also likely to be insane, often owing to the same issues. Also likely to cheat on you due to needing a lot of approval. Avoid dating, get what you can and then run. Change names if needed. Or your appearance. Heck, just leave town altogether and find a new theater troupe.

And be aware that she's probably slept with every other student, male or female, in the theater department. And maybe some of the professors.

Art girls can be hot but might have desire to inflict wounds on themselves and others. Monitor their moods and their drug use.

Avoid women stronger than you. Unless you're in to that sort of thing, if you know what I mean. In which case invest in a good first aid kit. And learn how to untie ropes or hide a small cutting tool near the headboard.

If a woman enjoys it the first time she's more likely to come around for a second time.

Try not to be that guy who is "the friend." If a woman ever tells you she wishes she could find a guy just like you and she isn't trying to get you to cheat on your girlfriend, then she has zero interest in having sex with you. Being there for her every time she breaks up with another loser named Chad who treated her like crap will not increase your chances that she'll finally realize you are perfect for her.

Avoid being someone's wingman unless you find yourself attracted to girls with plenty of "personality" or "good hearts". If you secretly have a fondness for that type of lady, your cup will runneth over in life. Big girls put out. And are often incredibly freaky.

Follow some of this advice and in no time you will be quite the "hit" with the "ladies"

Sunday, October 5, 2008


I thought maybe some folks would have some good costume stories to share. Oh well.

What prompted me to write about costumes in the first place is a trip Wife and I made to the store. We were wandering the aisles and noticed some pet costumes and started looking through them to see if there was anything for Dog. Forcing your pet to wear stuff that makes them look hilarious is one of the best parts of pet ownership. I highly recommend it.

What we shortly realized is just how nice the pet costumes actually were. For costumes for a pet to wear once a year, these were surprisingly high quality. We then realized we were right next to the kids costumes in the store so we wandered through briefly.

These costumes were so nice. Even the cheap ones were pretty decent quality. It was messed up.

When I was a kid, my parents would never spend the money to get us store bought costumes. They were some sort of holy grail that only the rich kids got. But thing was, they also sucked for the most part. There were some top of the line ones or decent rubber masks. But most of them were cheap plastic masks that you were lucky you could see out of. They were also notorious for scratching your eyes. That is if the elastic band that held it on didn't break.

The "costume" portion consisted of a plastic jump suit that often had the name of the character you were supposed to be across the chest. In case the mask wasn't obvious enough I suppose. They were one size fits all. Which of course means one size fits none. They were also extremely easy to rip.

I'm guessing they stopped making them because they were also likely to melt and burn kids. Kids today don't know what they're missing by not having costumes that can injure or maim them.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Rocktober has started

I love Halloween. Shocking, I know. A guy who loves April Fool's Day also loves playing dress up. I'm sure you're dumbfounded right now that this could be the case. But I do.

One year in undergraduate (I almost wrote one year in college but that does not narrow things down too much does it?) I even went so far as to shave one of my eyebrows for a Vanilla Ice costume. Sadly for you that while I have pictures of this event, they exist in the days before digital cameras were commercially available. It took weeks to grow back properly and itched. A lot. Totally worth it.

I'm just that dedicated to my costumes. Last year Wife and I dressed up as the scariest thing imaginable in our little town. Homeless people.

We went to a party where folks were possibly even more dedicated than I am to creating their costumes. Or they just have loads of money to spend on them. Who knows? The funny thing is that I think Wife and I were a little too convincing. We mostly just got stared at by people as if we were there to steal food and beverages. And since no one wanted to talk to us, ended up just eating their food and sneaking out. Like I said, dedicated to a theme.

I have more thoughts on costumes but I think I can get another post out of it tomorrow. So, on the outside chance that I still have readers, why not post in the comments section your favorite costume memory of all time?

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

One more political post

I'm linking to a post that is on my friend Andrew's blog. It is something he copied from someone else's blog. How blogosphere.

Elephant's on Bicycles.