November 28, 2005

An Antiques Road Show Fantasy.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 10:25 pm

Road Show Guy: “Well, well. What have we got here?”

Jimbo: “It’s a painting of Ed Sullivan, which, I believe, was painted by Elvis. See? It says ‘EAP’ in the lower left corner, and those are the initials of Elvis%20Presley”>Elvis Aaron Presley.”

Road Show Guy: “Interesting. Might I ask how much you paid for this picture?”

Jimbo: “Well, you see, I was on my way back to the airport from Eric’s house, and I got lost in Maryville. I saw this guy selling really neat paintings outside a saloon called “Dip ‘n Spit,” and I stopped to look. Most of the paintings were on black velvet, but this one wasn’t, and it caught my eye.”

Road Show Guy: “Fascinating, but how much did you pay for it?”

Jimbo: “I figured it was a steal at $300, so I snapped it up.”

Road Show Guy: “I can only assume that this was your first time in Tennessee, because ‘EAP’ stands for “Eat A Peach,” which is how a local drunk named Boris-Bubba Buchanan (who came from Georgia) used to sign all his paintings. He had an Allman Brothers thing going on. You know…the ‘Peach Thing.’”

Jimbo: “Yeah, it was my first time in Tennessee. I also picked up some interesting concrete things, which are out in the car. Wanna see them?”

Road Show Guy: “No, they’re probably from Ed’s Concrete Emporium, or whatever the hell he calls his place. They’re worthless. I’m sorry to have to tell you this, but that the painting is also worth about … well, nothing.”

Jimbo: “I’m really pissed. I’m goin’ back to Tennessee with a couple a guys who wear lots of gold and who have lots of chest hair, and we’re going to find that Boris Bubba Buchanan Guy and bust his cracker ass.”

Road Show Guy: “Calm down, because I am really interested in that thing that fell on the floor when you unwrapped the painting.”

Jimbo: “What thing? You mean that toilet paper roll on the ground? I wrapped the painting in toilet paper. That musta got stuck in there.”

Road Show Guy: “Exactly. That’s not just a toilet paper roll. That happens to be an original ‘Scott’s’ signature roll. You can tell by the unique lines in the cardboard and the color of the paper. The dead giveaway is the small ‘SS’ that appears on the inside of the roll, which stands for Sammy Scott, the inventor of the first toilet paper roll.”

Jimbo: “No shit?”

Road Show Guy: “Very good! ’No shit’ was an inside joke among the people who worked for Sammy back then. In forty years in the antique business I have never before seen one of these. In fact, I became lightheaded when I saw it on the floor. Might I ask what you paid for it?”

Jimbo: “You mean the toilet paper roll?”

Road Show Guy: “Yes, absolutely.”

Jimbo: “Beats hell out of me. Something like fifty cents.”

Road Show Guy: “Do you have any idea what it is worth?”

Jimbo: “A farookin’ toilet paper roll?”

Road Show Guy: “I told you, this is not just a toilet paper roll. This is a highly collectible toilet paper roll. What do you figure that an original ‘Scott’s Signature Roll’ might be worth?”

Jimbo: “OK, I’ll play along. How about three dollars?”

Road Show Guy: “How about three hundred thousand dollars?”

Jimbo: “Wow. Are you shitting me? What’s the paper itself worth? I got a bunch of it right here.”

Road Show Guy: “It ain’t worth shit.”

Jimbo: “No shit?”

Road Show Guy: “I wouldn’t shit you about that.”

Jimbo: “But the roll is worth three hundred grand?”

Road Show Guy: “No shit.”

Jimbo: “Wow. That’s some serious shit.”

November 27, 2005


Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 3:08 pm

Do you know what a “freegan” is?

TND has the gory details.

Can I get an EWWWWW?

November 26, 2005

Movies, Books and Life 101.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 9:35 pm

I don’t go to the movies very often. In fact, I think I saw three movies in the last three years and I only went because some of my cronies were going and agreed to drive. Last night I was driven to see Walk the Line, which everyone within earshot of a television or a radio knows is a movie about the life of Johnny Cash.

Going to the movies about once per year makes me a lousy moviegoer, but I’m sure that I’m even a lousier movie reviewer. I figure that the good reviewers are the folks who get paid to write movie reviews, and, from the ones I’ve read, it looks like the trick to being a good movie reviewer seems to be using a string of clever adjectives and complicated word play to ensure that the reader cannot figure out whether the good reviewer liked the movie or not.

With that said, here is my pedestrian review of the movie.

I liked it.

Then again, I like Johnny Cash, and I suspect that people who don’t like Johnny Cash won’t take the time or spend the money to see the movie. But, even a bad reviewer, such as I, knows that a Johnny Cash fan could be disappointed if, for example, the Napoleon Dynamite Guy played Johnny Cash, or if the director dressed “The Man in Black” in hot pink.

Turns out that Joaquin Phoenix did a pretty amazing job at pretending to be Johnny Cash. The guy actually did his own singing and, I’ll be damned if he doesn’t sound like Johnny Cash. I also found it interesting that he learned to play guitar from scratch in order to play the role. Because we were a few minutes late, we wound up sitting in the third row, so I had absolutely no problem watching Joaquin’s fingers (which were three feet tall on the screen) during the musical numbers. Of course it is possible that the sound I was hearing was someone else playing, but his fingers were in the right place.

Much has been said and written about how well Reese Witherspoon played the part of June Carter, and she deserves all the accolades. Like Phoenix, she sings all her own stuff and sings it about as well as June Carter did (who never considered herself to be a great singer).

The movie starts with Cash’s troubled childhood, made even more difficult by the horrible death of his brother and his overbearing father. It chronicles his entry into the music business with the help of Sam Phillips and traces his rise to stardom and his bout with demon drugs. Mostly, however, it deals with his long relationship with June Carter, who penned “Ring of Fire” at a time when she and Johnny Cash were on the verge of becoming an item, the only glitch being that they were married to other people. Johnny Cash fans know how that ends. Johnny and June marry in 1968 and live happily ever after. In the epilog, the casual fans are told that June Carter Cash died in 2003 and Johnny died four months later.

If you like Johnny Cash, you’ll like the movie. [/pedestrian review]

Memo to Self: Go to the movies more often. Not a bad way to spend a couple hours.

I actually spent a good part of the day reading books. Remember them? I finally got around to finishing a book I started on the plane two months ago when I went to Spain, and I got halfway through a new one. Not to worry. No book reviews here. You’ve already suffered through the movie review.

Memo to Self: Shut the computer off now and then and pick up a farookin’ book.

Life 101
In addition to working my magic on multiple loads of laundry, I spent an hour or so filling out the necessary information for my Advanced Health Directive (i.e. “Living Will”). There is nothing quite as uplifting as defining whether one considers “terminal” to mean: (a) I will die in a few days, (b) I will die in a few weeks, or (c) I will die in _______ months (fill in the blank with six months or less).

Yeah…I know. Why didn’t I have one of these long ago? I guess I’m a bit like a plumber with an unfixed leaky sink at home.

Memo to Self: Bring the damned Health Directives to the Post to have signatures witnessed, preferably before the potential witnesses are shitfaced.

November 25, 2005

The Best Laid Plans.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 2:03 pm

Tired and just a leeeetle bit hung over from yesterday’s festivities at Casa TJ and Mr. Surly, my secret plan was to take a walk, then a hot shower, then do absolutely nothing other than sit in a big, comfortable chair read, the doze off, then read, then doze off.

I did get to take the walk, but as for the rest — no such luck. Mrs. Parkway also had a secret plan, and that was the beginning of the process of hauling Christmas stuff down from the crawl space upstairs and hauling the almost-seven-foot artificial tree up from the basement.

The tree spends eleven months per year disassembled inside a large, green, heavy-duty plastic bag, which looks a good deal like a body bag. Dragging that unwieldy thing up the cellar stairs reminded me of the Tony Soprano and the boys dragging Big Pussy Bonpensiero’s dead ass up the ladder after Tony and the boys plugged him on the boat.

OK, so we dragged the Big Pussy Bompensiero tree up the stairs and lugged nine gazillion lights downstairs from the crawl space. Now, I’ll hit the chair and read, doze, read, doze, etc.


Ken, my friend and bodyguard called to say that several of the Usual Suspects are planning an outing today that includes a trip to try to see an early showing of “Walk the Line,” to be followed by dinner at a local eatery, and then on to a local VFW for some beer. Yep, I’m going.

Tomorrow, it looks like I won’t be able to avoid putting the eight hundred Cape May – type purple lights on the two big-ass rhododendron bushes in front of the house.

And, so it begins.


November 24, 2005

Thanksgiving 2005.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 4:24 am

Tony Soprano3.jpg


November 23, 2005


Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 4:35 pm

Leaves.jpgThis morning, as I walked the usual route, the temperature was 27 degrees, with gusting winds. Seeing that The Hawk was making its first appearance since spring, I had dragged out my sweat pants, woolen cap and painter’s gloves — the basics for cold-weather walking.

It was a beautiful, clear morning as I walked on streets on either side of which were piles of leaves waiting to be picked up by men with front loaders, dump trucks and rakes.

I remembered as a boy how much we loved to play in piles of leaves, which often included pitched “leaf fights” (probably not making the person who raked them very happy). We would also completely bury ourselves in piles of leaves during games of hide and seek. That practice came to an end when we were told that a kid somewhere was run over and killed by a car when the driver thought he was only passing over a pile of leaves.

One of my fond memories of autumn was the smell of burning leaves. It was quite common back then to gather the leaves into a large pile and set them on fire. In fact, you couldn’t go anywhere in the town during the fall (especially on the weekends) where you wouldn’t smell burning leaves. The fathers seemed to take pride and no small measure of enjoyment in burning their leaf piles. They would stand by with a rake and a garden hose, lest the fire get out of hand.

These days, anyone setting a pile of leaves on fire would receive an instant visit by the Fire Department, and the Police Department, the latter being armed with a Summons. Hell, I would not be surprised if a Department of Environmental Protection Swat Team were to show up in space suits looking for the enviro-criminal polluting the air and contributing to global warming.

I suppose that it makes sense to pick up the leaves and cart them off to their final resting place, which doubtless is a giant compost pile somewhere, but I miss the days when they were given a something more like a Viking Funeral and I could smell the smoke.

November 22, 2005

“President Kennedy is Dead.”

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 9:56 pm

It was November 22, 1963.

Each year, the twenty-second of November quietly sneaks in behind the twentieth and the twenty-first. I never think of the twenty-second until it rolls around, but once it’s here, I cannot forget what it was like on that day.

I wrote about it in 2003.

It was one of those times when everyone remembers where he or she was when it happened.

My Cousin Jack’s recollection of that day is touchingly told here.

We all died a little on that day.

November 21, 2005

Two in a Row.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 8:55 pm

Last year, we reported that Camden, New Jersey was identified by the Kansas-based Morgan Quitno’s city crime rankings as the Most Dangerous City in the United States. This year, Camden did the Garden State proud by again being named the nation’s Most Dangerous City.

However, Camden city officials are less than pleased with the “honor.” They complained that the survey was not fair and failed to take into account the progress that was made since last year’s survey.

Camden is the County Seat of Camden County, a democrat stronghold and the home turf of political boss George Norcross. In the past election, Jon Corzine beat Doug Forrester by twenty-six percentage points in Camden County, which suggests to me that the residents of the county must be happy with the status quo and the concern shown for them by Boss Mr. Norcross. Go figure.

So, what about next year? Maybe the city can score a hat trick.

November 20, 2005

Ask Hillary. (Vol. 2)

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 3:48 pm

You’ve Got Questions? I’ve got Answers.
Because I’m Very Smart, and You’re … Very Not.

Dear Senator Clinton,

Do you ever eat fast food? If so, what is your favorite kind?

Cynthia McNubbet

Dear Cindy,

What great questions! The answer is YES, and my absolute fave is Taco Bell!! A couple times a month, I’ll pick up a big sack of Taco Bell stuff to bring back to my place in D.C. I usually get a couple beef combo burritos, two beef and potato burritos , and four tacos – two hard and two soft. I always make sure I get extra hot sauce, loads of it. When I get home I put on a sombrero and take everything else off, and, girlfriend, I mean everything else. I eat it all right from the bag, while I watch a red-hot Brad Pitt flick. The idea is to eat everything in the bag without using a napkin. Muy caliente!

Dear Senator Clinton,

I am a longtime fan. You are a very strong and successful woman, which is not easy because, as all of us seriously smart women know, it is still a “man’s world.” I am battling my way up the corporate ladder, and I’m worried about hitting the glass ceiling. I would appreciate any success tips you might be able to give to an upward-bound career woman such as myself.

Mary L. VanDean

Dear Mary,

Simple. You have to learn to pee standing up.

When I first got to the Senate, some of the “old boys” treated me in a very condescending manner. You should have seen the looks on the faces of those old farts when they walked into the men’s room and found me standing right there pissing into a urinal. It takes a little practice, but it’s well worth it. They don’t give me any shit now. LOL

Dear Senator Clinton:

I was wondering whether you do anything special to prepare for an event that you expect will require you to be particularly sharp, such as press conferences or live TV interviews.

Maureen O’Connely

Dear Maureen,

Wow! Another primo question! You guys are the best. Yes, there are a few things I do, but one comes to mind at the moment. It was during my campaign for the Senate when I was preparing to debate that guy Rick or what the hell ever his name was. I was pretty wired, and, frankly, more than a little nervous. Know what I mean? Anyway, I sent one of my aides out to the animal shelter to pick up a kitten for me. She brought back this little tabby kitten, and I strangled it. I was good to go then. LOL

Dear Hillary,

I am thirty-one years old, and I am six feet three inches tall, with blue eyes and dirty blonde hair. I work out all the time, which accounts for my magnificent physique, which includes washboard abs and an ass that stops traffic. People say I look like Brad Pitt, but with a much better body. At the moment, I am busy modeling men’s swimwear.

The thing is – I think you are absolutely HOT!! I go out of my mind every time I see you on television. I was hoping I could get your cell number.

Studly Ripped

Dear Studly,

Check you snail mail. I hope you like Mexican food.

November 19, 2005

Lines, Lines, Everywhere a Line.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 2:01 pm

Yo! Check this out.

I can hear you all saying to yourselves, “Yo, Jimbo. I don’t see anything.”

I figured as much. It’s the horizontal line that goes across the page. Lookit! Lookit! See?

I did the same thing in a post the day before yesterday, which you can scroll to or click here. Go look. I’ll wait.

[humming…tapping foot…humming some more]

OK, you’re back.

Now, don’t even think about telling me that you noticed the lines when you first saw them then. If you had noticed, I would have expected comments such as these:

”Jimbo, congratulations. Great lines, man. I really mean it. They are really something.”

“Awesome lines, Dude.”

“Jimbo, you are the Linemeister!”

“I have been depressed for months. Two days ago I was on the way out of the house to throw myself in front of a bus and I glanced at my computer and saw your lines. They changed everything for me. I’ve come to realize that I have a lot to live for. And, guess what? This morning I heard that I was hired for my dream job. Thanks, Jimbo!”

But did I get such comments? Nooooooo. That’s because lines are child’s play to you Virtuosi of Stylesheets and Houdinis of HTML – You who change layouts with the ease of changing socks. To me, Mr. Techno-Stoooopid, doing lines is a big farookin’ deal.

I can do lots of lines, like this.

Hell, I can make the line appear in the middle of the page, like this.

And, I can make ‘em fat, like this.

I can create interesting visual art. I call this one “Reading Between the Lines”.

The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog.

I’m drunk with power.

Now, I shall rest.

Update: This is for ‘Neck, the smartass.. 😉

Next Page »

Powered by WordPress