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Friday, September 30, 2005


Poker Championship

I have registered to play in the
Online Poker Blogger Championship!

This event is powered by PokerStars.

Registration code: 6413466



1. Umm...JJ, I saw X-Files Season Eight too.

2. Four hundred and fifty nine bullets and none hit that pretty boy face?

Thursday, September 29, 2005


off the handle, anyways.

Wife got restraining order against him.


Go here (sidebar on the left) and then click your way back here!


My landlord lowered my rent and the cable guy said my DVR can record up to 700 hours of television.


Yeah, I couldn't care less either.

Judith Miller, the New York Times reporter who has been jailed since July 6 for refusing to testify in the C.I.A. leak case, was released from a Virginia detention center this afternoon after she and her lawyers reached an agreement with a federal prosecutor to testify before a grand jury investigating the matter, the paper's publisher and executive editor said.


Elian, now 11, set off a seven-month custody battle after he was rescued off the Florida coast in 1999 during a failed attempt to reach the United States. His mother died at sea, and his Miami relatives and Cuban exile groups fought to prevent his return to Cuba.

The boy was reunited with his father in Cuba -- his legal guardian -- after an armed federal raid April 22, 2000, on his relatives' home. Since then Elian has been treated as a hero in Cuba; Castro had him give a highly publicized speech on the fifth anniversary of the Miami raid.

The boy in the interview said he considers Castro "not only as a friend, but also as a father."

Read more.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005


HAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHA... the whole ride home I was thinking about what I would name my post about going to the so-called Blogger Serenity pre-screening in NYC tonight.

I had a bunch of other ones all lined up, but when I sat down to type, that one just came out -- and it so fits perfectly.

Despite the many kind people who emailed me about the instapundit/townhall free tiks for bloggers offer, by the time I sent my email, it was too late.

But luckily Alceste was on the ball, and so I got to go as his guest without pimping out my site with Universal's Serenity blurb. (Not that we are above pimping Clareified out, mind you, for the right price, we'll name the site after you and put your picture in the banner --- I do have a new apartment to furnish here.)

(There will be no spoilers about the key plot points for the movie, in the following post. All I will say, is the next time you see Esther, smile and say: "I am a leaf in the wind," then run as fast as your little legs can carry you.)

When we got to the theater, we foolishly thought the guy wearing the brown Serenity T-Shirt and holding a clipboard was an authority figure in charge of the event. Nope.
Just a loser.
We tacked onto the back of a line that practically covered the length of eighth avenue (which is a very, very long avenue).
As we waited, the line got both longer and thicker. Things looked bleak. Alceste left to see if anyone in charge had showed up.
I broke my longstanding "Do not engage" rule and introduced myself to the guy in front of me on line. He was holding a notebook and looking around curiously.
"Are you a blogger?"
"Yes, but I'm also a journalist."
"Heeey, bloggers are journalists!"
He smiled and amiably agreed.
I asked what his site was and told him about Clareified.
We chatted until Alceste came back. It seems that once again I have managed to find the only other Republican in NYC.
Who is feeding them after dark and getting them wet? Must turn Robert George to restore some the equillibrium.
The clock was inching toward the scheduled seven p.m. start time, but the line was not even inching.
I saw a familiar face walk past.
She was flushed.
"Are you standing on the line that doesn't exist?"
Good gravy, I hope not.
I looked in front of me,and then behind. Nope, line is totally real.
"No. What line are you looking for?"
Esther flashed her confirmation email, and Alceste explained that the good folks at Universal decided not to show up.
"Does that mean I have to go to the back of this line?"
"Ehh...I'm sure if you stayed to chat with us all the way inside, it'll be fine."
(Huh...this is probably how the rest of the line kept getting wider too...)
Turns out that while Alceste had gotten tickets through the instapundit link, Esther had gotten her tickets through some really high up connection. Of course, since she was in the line with the rest of us, I don't know how high up he actually was.
But she had his number and decided to call it.
The guy she called was in California and explained that she and a handful of other bloggers had gotten the "confirmed tickets," but then Townhall posted that link and the deluge of emails and new additional bloggers, screwed up the whole system and now no one was confirmed. He apologized and said it was totally his own fault.
But, as we listened all we could hear was Esther's side of the conversation.
"Do you know how much like an excuse that sounds?" she snapped into her cellphone.
"What? What's his excuse?"
"Oh, his house might be on fire."
Not for nothing, but as far as excuses go...
Turns out TK was writing an article about the use of electronic media in PR, and so as Esther kvetched and I naysaid, he went back and forth on whether it would be a better story if we got in or if we didn't.

But within minutes the line was moving and we were in the theater well before seven.

Having successfully used us for our place in line, Esther tried to ditch us once we were inside for primo seats in the upper decks.
"Sorry these are reserved," the usher said as she eyed a row of empty leather seats.
"Do you mind telling me for who? I actually am supposed to have reserved seats."
Alceste had already given up and headed straight for the front rows. So dejected at his fate, he tripped and almost fell down the last three steps.
Hard to say if I was laughing at that or the usher telling Esther that the seats were not reserved for her.
Dawn Summers: very bad person.
Somehow, we all ended up sitting together in the third row waiting eagerly for the movie to start.
Probably feeling guilty for trying to ditch us for the fancy "reserved" seating, Esther offered up some Twizzlers for the eating -- but I judged them and found them wanting.
Twizzlers. Bleeech...might as well chew on your sandals.
As promised, there won't be any spoiler spoilers -- I won't really talk about the movie at all, since as TK artfully puts it "If you don't like the series, you probably will be lukewarm towards the movie. And also, you have no soul."

As I've always been iffy about the Firefly series, his analysis rings true. Although... I can't imagine what a man who didn't like Buffy or Angel, knows about soul.

But one observation that pisses me off the more I think about it, is that Whedon holds steadfast to the taboo Hollywood has made of the interracial relationship.

Zoe and Wash, who in the series were nauseatingly lovey dovey, touchy feely, kissy face, bed romping, are here, completely stripped of all affection. Nary so much as a "what's up?" or handshake.

Inexplicable. Also, Mal seemed to be a disjointed composite of Mal from the pilot (bad/grumpy) and Mal (funny/charming) from the later episodes.

Alceste has hinted that he might pull a Dorian Davis and guest blog a review of the movie here, until then, see you in the skies.

Oh, and I am a leaf in the wind.


Tuesday, September 27, 2005


He will be soon.

Jon "Angelina won't even take his last name" Voight?

CNN Reports that Katrina victims are living 'like cavemen'

Evidently, having learned nothing from Geico's errors, the news station now scrambles to appease the anger of the nation's cavemen.


Are there laws against marrying a bank?


Did they really close school on account of high gas prices?


She meant she gave him drugs.

Ashley Smith, the woman who says she persuaded suspected courthouse gunman Brian Nichols to release her by talking about her faith in God, discloses in a new book that she gave him methamphetamine during the hostage ordeal.


Explaining that his empire is only enough for four children, Donald Trump calls the other four kids into the boardroom and promptly tells 21-year-old layabout Eric Trump: "You're Fired."

Monday, September 26, 2005


An appeals court in Brooklyn has affirmed the first-degree assault conviction of two vegan parents who were accused of nearly starving their daughter to death.

One member of the four-judge panel of the Appellate Division, Second Department, however, cast doubt on whether the parents were aware of the risks that a vegan diet posed to a baby. The judge, Justice Sondra Miller, said the assault conviction should be vacated.

"The defendants may have been naïve, and misguided, and even unfit to serve as the custodians of their child," Justice Miller wrote in People v. Swinton, 2003-04653. "What they did not do, however, is evince criminal recklessness."

Silva and Joseph Swinton, both 24, were convicted in 2003 and sentenced, respectively, to 6 years and 5 years in prison. Mr. Swinton was given a more lenient sentence due to his reduced mental capacity.

Ms. Swinton gave birth to a baby girl, Ice Swinton, in July 2000. Mistrustful of doctors and modern medicine, she gave birth at home, assisted only by Mr. Swinton. Ice weighed three pounds at birth.

Over the next 16 months, the Swintons fed their daughter nothing more than nuts and fruit. In November 2001, Ice weighed 10 pounds when she should have weighed about 25. She had no teeth, underdeveloped and soft bones, and could not lift her own head. Ice is reportedly now healthy and living with relatives.

Damn hippies.


Dawn: “If our room has a DVD player, this will be the best end of my summer vacation trip ever!”
F-Train: “I don’t think this is going to be the best end of your summer vacation trip ever.”

So what’s a young woman of marriable age to do with her last weekend of fun and freedom before resuming the shackles of a work a day world?

Why drive three hours to play poker and drink in Malvern, PA, of course!

Ahhh yes, “The Bash at the Boathouse” Al Can’t Hang’s ingenious bringing together of poker bloggers for a night of gambling, charity, bands, Delaware cheese steaks and drinking. Oh wait, did I mention the drinking?
Cause, oh, was there drinking.
And then, afterwards, more drinking.
And then…oh, we get it, Dawn just get on with the embarrassing stories already.
Ok, OK, but I’m going to start with the poker because I actually made a 77 dollar bet.
And then, called a 28 dollar bet.
A regular high roller I have become.
There were two tables full of poker bloggers. One table was playing limit HORSE, some round robin of version of dealer’s choice, where four-fifths of the games are not Hold ‘Em.
Which, after my last experience with dealer’s choice, left but one option: the .5/1 No Limit game.
I drove down with F-train, who, despite exchanging emails with me about the Bash for a week specifying that I would pick him up at 10:30 a.m., proceeded to sleepily answer his phone when I called from outside his house at 10:35 with a hasty “no…I’m up…I just gotta go brush my teeth.”
“Well, I knew you’d come, I just didn’t think you’d be on time.”
Since I had skipped breakfast in order to get to casa de F-Train on time, I practically inhaled the cheese steaks that EvaCanHang brought with her to the Boathouse all the way from Delaware.
Turns out, the best Philly Cheese Steaks? Not from Philly.
The pit stop for food caused F-train and I to be the last ones at the poker tables, and while he managed to squeeze his tiny little body into a slot between Dr. Pauly and Jason Spaceman, I played audience for an hour or so before I took the plunge.
The table consisted of Spaceman and wife, Pauly and Derek – the Venus and Serena Williams of the poker blogger world, F-train, and two, maybe three other guys.(Pauly has the lineup here)
I folded many a hand as the friendly .5/1 NL game quickly became the $4 standard raise/All-in NL game.
I want my mommy.
Then I was dealt AK!
I hate this hand mind you, and I knew that one of the guys at the table would raise, so in second position, I just called.
Sure enough, Jason standard raises it from the button.
“F*ck your position raises!” F-train shouts, throwing in three dollars.
Re-raise Dawn. Re-freaking-raise.
No. Shhh. We hate this hand.
Your mama.
We have the same mama, idiot.
You bi—

“Oh, sorry. Umm…I call.”
The flop comes 3 6 K.
F-train checks.
“I’m all-in,” I say, pushing my last 19.50 in the pot.
Jason folds.
F-train leans into the table.
Looooooooong pause.
“I think I’m getting the right odds to call here,” he says.
“Damn you and your pot odds.”
“Damn you and your mathematics,” Jason translates.
I am glaring. F-Train doesn’t know this, but if he calls and wins, I am going to dismember him in his sleep and dump the parts all along my drive back to Manhattan.
“I call” he finally says, turning over 45s.
Son of a!
I told you to re-raise didn’t I?
I hate the voices in my head.
The turn card gives him a spade draw to go with his open ended straight draw.
Deuce on the river.
“Do you want to rebuy?” Pauly asks.
I check my pockets. Hmmm…well, I need money for the hacksaw and some hefty garbage bags, but that still leaves me with a hundred….
I hand him a fifty dollar bill. He recoils in horror.
The bill drops to the table.
The other players also push back a little from the table.
“Fifty dollar bills are bad luck!”
“Yeah, man”
Pauly starts to cry.
“I can’t have this in my pocket.”
After a few more minutes of hysterics, my fifty was shoved deep into the piles of bills and I was given another stack of chips to lose.
OK, Dawn, play smarter – which basically means fold.
After an hour of playing fold ‘em to the point where even I forgot I was there, I finally called a standard raise with KQ.
The flop came K Q 4.
Woo hoo!
I raised the bet and everyone folded to me.
The next hand was my infamous loss to Spaceman’s upturned hand.
In shame, I went back into lockdown.
I limped in first position with J10h.
There were three other limpers and we saw a flop.
J 3 10 rainbow.
Woo hoo.
I bet five dollars.
Two people called, one folded.
The turn came: 10.
Oh. My. Word.
Stay calm. Stay very, very calm.
I bet ten dollars.
The guy next to me raised to forty.
The last guy, Derek, folded.
Back to me.
What could he possibly have? Two jacks? No way, he would have raised on the flop…straight draw? Flush draw?
“I’m all-in.”
Pauly counted…sixty seven, plus the ten already out there.
After agonizing for a long while, he threw in the rest of the bet and turned over 8 10.
“Let me see your J 10,” he sighed.
“OK!” I said happily.
The river brought another Jack for Dawn.
The hand made me big stack!
The next hand I was dealt pocket queens under the gun.
I was about to bet, when a man, who looked like a bible salesman, put his hand on my shoulder.
Uh oh. God is not pleased.
“Have you guys started that hand?”
“Ok…can I just talk to y’all for a minute.”
He is so gonna tell us about the fiery pits of hell.
Instead, he produced a deck of cards and told us to “think of a card, any card”
His act lasted for ten minutes, during which he produced Five aces, brought ourlost 9 of diamonds back from the depths of plank jail and guessed the number of the building where I grew up in as a child.
“OK, Dawn. I want you to really think about the house you grew up in. Can you remember it? Can you see it clearly in your head?”
“Guy, I just moved out last week. Yes, I see it, very clearly.”
Only F-train laughed.
At the end of the mind reading portion of the evening, he reached deep into his vest, as if to pull something out.
I flinched.
“NO RABBITS…OR DOVES!” I screamed recoiling from him like Pauly from the picture of General Grant.
Only F-Train laughed.
Instead, it was another deck of cards. This time, Derek was his mark.
“Is that your daughter?” he asked pointing to the baby-faced Mrs. Spaceman.
“No, she’s my wife,” he replied.
He looked surprised.
“But you guys can’t cross state lines, right?”
“No, it’s ok. We’re from Kentucky,” Derek answered, not missing a beat.
He did a trick where Derek picked a card from a red deck and he turned the back of it blue, even though all of the other cards were red.
At the end, we played three card monty, where he assured us that we weren’t breaking any Pennsylvania gambling laws because there was “no chance of winning.” But it was ok because all the money went to a charity to find a cure for cystic fibrosis in honor of Big Mike’s nephew, little Mike.
After the magician left, we were all impressed, except F-Train, who was on his sixth So-Co on the rocks and showing it.
“Yeah, I thought he was good. But he slipped up a bit. There was like one blue card in the deck at the end there.”
Yeah, buddy, that was the magic part.
In the hub bub, I raised with my queens and got no action.
A few hands later, I busted out Spaceman with an AJ.
He didn’t rebuy, leaving us down to seven.
The next hand, I was dealt wired twos.
I standard raised, Derek called.
The flop came J 10 2.
I bet five.
Derek called.
Turn was a King.
I bet five, Derek raised to ten.
I made a worried call.
The river came King.
The Macarena went off in my head…or so Mike Sexton woulda said.
I bet five again.
Derek went all in for twenty eight dollars.
“I call!”
“I have the straight!” He said turning over his cards and going for the pot.
“Ok…I have a full house,” said the slow rolling mofo with the shades on.
That busted out Derek, who had lost a similar hand to Mrs. Spaceman, when her pocket queens turned into queens full of tens on the river, beating the Ace high straight he made on the turn.
We played five handed for about another hour because F-train wanted to protect his “donation to charity,” as he had decided to pull a Barry Greenstein and donate his winnings to charity.
That Bastard.
I can’t hacksaw him to death now. Or can I?
I decided to take my car back to the hotel and take one of the storied shuttles back to the Boathouse, so that I could partake in the drinking without fear of wrapping my car around a tree.
Turns out F-train was totally wrong and our suite did have a DVD player! I promptly put in my Gilmore Girls Season Three DVD when we arrived. (There is a horrifying picture up of the happy moment on F-Train’s site.)
I hadn’t gotten a chance to finish the DVD before we left for poker, so after I parked the car, I jumped on the couch and pressed play.
Karol called during the final minutes.
“Remember when you said you were ready to play with the poker bloggers?” I asked.
“Well, you were wrong.”
I told her about the crazy poker game.
“I don’t know…I think you’re selling yourself short,” she countered, “and selling me short, thanks for that by the way.”
I finished the episode I was watching and was fixing to eject the disc, when I realized I had accidentally skipped an episode.
So I went back to the couch and pressed play again.
My cellphone rang.
“Where are you?”
It was F-train.
“Oh. Dude, someone asked for you and I looked around and realized I hadn’t seen you for hours.”
“Yeah…came to park the car. I looked for the shuttle, but I didn’t see it, so I came back here for a little while.” (If this were Arrested Development, the narrator would now add: “Dawn did not look for the shuttle before going back to the suite.”)
“Well, are you coming back?”
“Yes, I’m leaving now” (Dawn was not leaving now.)
I went back to Gilmore.
Thirty minutes later.
Ring Ring.
“Everyone is asking for that nice girl Dawn? Where are you?”
Hmmm…by everyone does he mean that ever so dreamy Bobby Bracelet?
“I’m coming, I’m coming. Give me a minute. I’m calling a cab.” (Dawn was not calling a cab.)
Dude, don’t judge me. Rory and Paris were in a duel! A DUEL…with actual pointy sticks.
When Gilmore was finally done, and I checked to make sure I didn’t miss any other eps, I sealed it up nicely in the Netflix envelope and went to the front desk.
“Hi. I need a cab to go to the Roadhouse”
“Yes. Boathouse.”
“Ok, hold on. Let me call the 24 hours cab company.”
Did she just say “the”? Where am I?
“Yes, one passenger. Boathouse....Ok....But I thought you were 24 hours?”
I looked at my watch…it was only 10…could the 24 hours a day cab company be closed?
“Ok, hold on, let me ask her.”
She put her hand over the receiver and informed me that while they could take me to the Boathouse, they could not bring me back.
“That’s fine.”
I paid the fare and set off to find F-Train.
And I did. Or what was left of him.
There he was sprawled across a table, “talking” to Pauly.
“DAAAAWWWNNN….You caaaammmeeee bbaaaaccckkkk,” the word “slurred” doesn’t quite capture it.
“Are you having a good time? I want you to have a good time.”
Imagine that taking thirteen minutes to say.
“Yes, very good. Best end of summer vacation ever.”
“Ok, because you should have a good time.”
Alrighty. I need a drink.
I returned to hear F-Train and Dr. Pauly deep in a philosophical conversation about the propriety of seeing their friend’s wife’s breasts.
“Well, I’m not going to look away.”
“Well, yeah. They’re breasts.”
Dude. Must. Find. Different. Conversation.
Halfway through my second cosmo, I had my second drunken encounter with a mortgage broker.
“Hey, what’re you drinking?”
I downed it.
End of conversation, guy, move it along.
“Let me get you another one.”
Well, if I gotta converse, might as well, have a beverage in hand.
He came back with the cosmo and proceeded to tell me all about how he used to bartend at the Boathouse and how it was his birthday and how I was getting a very good rate on the mortgage for my coop, but that he didn’t really want to talk about business.
“So who’d you come with?”
“F-Train.” (And by the way, F-Train actually went by ‘F-train’ the whole trip…I tried to be 'Lola' for a little while, then switched to my real name, then went to Dawn, then realized that everyone was so blotto, I coulda given them my social security number and a full set of fingerprints and they still wouldn’t be able to figure out who I was the next day.)
And I’m not kidding.
But drunk guy was intrigued by the name.
“Is that his name?”
“No…it’s his blogger name.”
“What it mean?”
“I don’t know.”
But if it’s a euphemism, I don’t wanna know for what.
Drunk guy tried to get me to dance, after a successful resistance, he left to find his wife.
I headed out to the dance floor to listen to the bands.
I saw F-train again.
“Hey, you’re back. I’m glad you came back. Are you having a good time?”
Now, I was laughing.
He was standing like a two-year-old who has just let go of the coffee table he used to pull himself up.
He is so gonna fall down.
“Yes, F-train. I am having a very good time.”
“That’s good. I want you to have a good time.”
“Yes, you mentioned.”
By now he had somehow amassed a number of beads around his neck, and bolstered by his thirty-ninth So-Co and his discussion with Pauly, he was now trying to exchange them for looks at his friends’ wives’ breasts. All plural.
In the midst of a haggling negotiation: “No, I want two blue beads from F-Train, and two from Spaceman,” a sixty year old woman, also fairly blotto, walked up to F-Train to get the beads from his neck.
“Give me those,” she drawled in a dead-on Bea Arthur voice.
“No,” he said holding on to them, “if you want ‘em, you have to earn them. Let’s see your breasts.”
Dawn was in full on train wreck mode --- can’t look away. Is my fine, upstanding friend really trying to see grandma’s rack here?
We are all so going to the fiery pits of hell.
The drunk F-Train and drunk Bea Arthur remained locked in their death grips on the beads for about five minutes, before F-Train stumbled and she yanked a few beads off his neck and ran.
Unfazed, he returned to his bargaining with EvaCanHang, his bead collection now sadly diminished.
“OK…I’ll give you one bead, and he’ll give you three.”
She agreed.
I went back to the bar.
I had started the Amaretto portion of the evening when AlCan’tHang saw me drinking alone at the bar and promised to kick F-train’s ass for leaving me by myself.
“Awww…thanks,” I said.
You should probably kick his ass for seeing your wife’s breasts for beads, while you’re at it. (Dawn did not say this last part.)
I spent the rest of the night listening to the bands, and dodging F-train’s incessant “Are you having a good time”s, I counted at least seventeen once I really started paying attention.
Around midnight, I switched to water, finally accepting that there was no way F-train would be able to drive us back to NYC in the next month, much less in ten hours.
I still can’t believe he hasn’t fallen down yet.
Naturally, I gravitated to the television over the bar.
A commercial for the new Chris Rock show.
Drunk guy number…eh…I’m out of fingers and toes… leans into me.
“This show is sooo confusing…like they keep cutting away…I can’t follow it. They’ve got to fix it, you know what I mean?”
Mmm...the smell of large quantities of alcohol being processed through the liver and escaping through the breath…wonder if the cheese steak tastes as good the second time around…
“Umm…it’s just a commercial…not the show.”
He slowly turned away from me and stared at the television which now flashed the “It’s the story of what makes Chris ROCK!” comment from some low rent TV reviewer.
He turned back to me.
“You’re right. But it’s still confusing.”
“You probably just need a good night’s sleep.”
He laughed so hard and so suddenly, I jumped out of the bar stool.
“You’re right about that,” he said still laughing.
And then, just like that, he stopped.
“The thing is…about poker.”
“We’re all going to die…It’s just how life is…you can play and it doesn’t matter.”
What? Poker players die too?
I started looking around for someone…anyone else I knew….
“What? Am I weirding you out?”
“Uhmm…no…poker…death…so true.”
He then told me about his wife and how they bought a car because they have to take their daughter to the doctor every month and that his wife was pregnant with a son, but it’s not really cool until the baby actually comes because then it’s like “whoa, a baaaaby.” (He’s holding his arms out and looking down into them to demonstrate the babyness of it all.)
I went to find AlcantHang to see if there were shuttles going back to the hotel from the bar, especially since I knew there weren’t any cabs to be had.
He said that as soon as the band finished up, the shuttles would be called.
I went searching the floors for F-Train. I had seen him flailing his drunken arms on the dance floor about half an hour ago, but not since then.
I finally found him on the phone in the courtyard.
He figured out what the ringing was?
Or he’s crank calling some old girlfriend.
We were the first ones out of the bar, following behind the lead singer of the metal band that had just finished up.
The guy was dressed in black leather, and had the requisite black eyeshadow on his face, which after an hour of hard head slamming in a hot bar and lights, was now running down his face.
F-Train decided the look was very gay. And said so.
“He looks like he should be getting F&%@cked in the ass with a rubber ball in his mouth.”
The bouncers, who were only a few inches away from the lead singer started to laugh. I prayed the singer didn’t hear him though.
Luckily, the guy didn’t turn around.
“Ok, F-Train. There are things we think in our heads and things we say out loud for others to hear. That was one of those inside our head things.”
“Do you think Bobby Bracelet is going home with that girl?” (I wouldn't find this out until the next morning, but F-Train had been keeping a photo log of Bobby’s drunken courtship with a local girl.)
“I don’t know, F-Train.”
By the way, he is now standing, but bent over at the waist.
“Cause she is soo ugly.”
“Shhh…remember what I just said about the inside our heads/outside our heads thing?”
Oh God.
I looked around…don’t think anyone heard that.
A couple walked past us:
“RACHEL!” F-train yelled, apparently drunk and deaf.
“My name’s not Rachel, you asshole.”
“Well, she seems defensive about all her beads.”
“Shut it. F-train.”
Minutes later the shuttle, Bobby B and his “ugly” girlfriend came out front.
I planted my hand firmly across F-train’s mouth.
Desperate times, my friends, desperate times.
We climbed into the shuttle and waited for the other Bash goers to fill it up.
Pauly came out holding keys in his had.
Carter, who was in the shotgun seat, had a very after school special moment.
“NO MAN! I can’t let you drive like this.”
Pauly either didn’t hear him, or ignored him.
Next came Jason and Mrs. Spaceman.
They started to walk toward Pauly.
Again, Carter tried to stop them.
“Come on. Get in the shuttle. They are going to die in that car. They are all gonna die.”
Mrs. Spaceman climbed in, but her husband went toward the death car.
She got out and followed him.
Carter, defeated, merely muttered to himself.
“I tried to save their lives man, I tried.”
When we got back to the room, Carter followed F-train and I in, I asked no questions and went swiftly to my room.
They will both likely be dead from alcohol poisoning in the morning, I thought as I brushed my teeth and climbed into bed.
Well, at least I’ll have something to blog about.


Anonymous Lawyer is a fake.

It's likely that I narrowly escaped the same fate as Ms. Haobsh. This past December, I was publicly outed as the author of a Weblog called Anonymous Lawyer, where I post about life inside a corporate law firm. It's fiction, but many of the stories are inspired by events from the summer I spent at a law firm between my second and third years of law school. Had the firm discovered the blog while I was there, I'm guessing they would have fired me. And under current law, they would have had every right to, no matter that I wasn't writing about real people, real cases or anything that would expose the firm to liability.

Given my own blogging experience, I feel that the natural argument for me to make would be that employers shouldn't be able to fire bloggers simply for having a blog, and that the law should protect us.

via Karol


My fantasy team scores more than EIGHTY points this week and I still lose.

ECB Rams are now an impressive 0-3.


I forgot to tape Desperate Housewives...any help?

Will get my act totally together once the Time Warner gives me my freaking second DVR box.

Saturday, September 24, 2005


5. Everyone else at the table is re-raising pre-flop with 27o.

4. Half the people at the table get paid to write about poker.

3. One player starts live-blogging the action out loud during the game.

2. Small Blind, thinking everyone has folded to his raise, turns his cards face up. You protest that you're still in the hand, he apologizes and agrees to play the hand with his cards face up. He proceeds to beat you anyway.

1. The guy sitting next to you has Phil Gordon's cell phone number.


5. Heated twenty minute debate about whether 'tits' and 'boobs' are synonymous or descriptions of different sizes.

4. Guy calls your 77 dollar bet drawing dead.

3. More than one offer to chop the pot pre-flop.

2. Magician breaks!

1. Southern Comfort: The Great skill equalizer.


The Gibs have the most awesome collection of Buffy stuff for people never actually employed by Joss Whedon.


The next person to refer to Victor Kiriakis as "Jennifer Aniston's dad" is gonna get it.

Friday, September 23, 2005


God wants me to stay in the ECB. The fates have decreed I can pay rent on all the apartments in Manhattan that I want, but I will never be able to move out of East Coco Beach.

How else can one explain being turned down by a moving company for a job being "too small?"

So, of course, I find a moving company small enough to take my job. I agree on fairly favorable terms: $55/hr plus tolls and tips. I set an appointment time: 9 a.m. Friday morning.

Not-quite-so-promptly at 9:11 a.m., the doorbell rings. A fiftyish man and his strapping son show up at my door and make quick work of getting all the boxes out to the curb.

The father goes to get the van and comes back holding a slip of paper instead.

"Well, this is gonna cost you an extra $115," he says reading the ticket he received for double parking.

Assuming that he meant the "royal you," as in "you're damned if you do, damned if you don't, I nodded sympathetically.

He then proceeds to hand me the ticket.

Indeed, there in black and white is a fancy municipal summons and fine for 115 bucks.

"Yeah, sucks," I say still quite sympathetic as I hand him back the ticket.

"No, you're going to need to pay that."

Huh. What now?

"It's considered a toll."

"A ticket is not a toll. You don't need to pay a toll to go from Brooklyn to Manhattan." I intend the royal you.

"Well, I came here for this job. I got this ticket to do this job, so you have to pay it."

The boy, meanwhile, starts to load the truck.

"HANG ON," he bellows at the lad, "you gonna pay the ticket or not?"

Most definitely not.

"You're charging $55 an hour, this job will barely take two hours. You're basically doubling your fee. I can't pay that."

"Fine. I'll just eat this and we'll go."

"You're going to just leave my stuff here?"



"I am not going to pay you double the agreed upon rate. You shouldn't have double parked."

"Let's go."

He and his son climbed into the van and sped off.


I stared at my wordly possessions on the curb.

This is no good.

I'll spare you what happened next: the tears, the sweat, the pleas, the broken nails.

I will only say that I managed to get everything back into the apartment and secure another moving company that agreed to come at 1 p.m. for a price of $120.

At 12:45 the mover called to say that his van broke down and I would need to make other arrangements.

So, fine. That's it. I am going back to my room facing a dark alley.

I'm no fool. I know when I'm beat.

I need a nap.


OK, last post in the “Texas: what I did for my summer vacation” series. Promise.
Can you believe that with six weeks off, I only managed one trip? But do you know what I hate more than flying? Animals.
So, understandably, it took me some time to come to grips with the fact that I actually held a leash, with a real live dog at the end of it.
Of course, Jon and Norah’s dog, is not just any dog. He is a specially trained dog named after our nation’s chief security officer: Jack Bauer!
Indeed, dog Jack Bauer’s celebrity status doesn’t just end at his name. Oh no, the curly haired, black, not at all retarded ‘Portie’ also shares an animal behaviorist with Sharon Stone’s dog!
So, when Norah asked me to watch him while she got a caffeine fix, how could I say no?
Especially since I was paralyzed with fear and the trembling.
I took the very tip of the leash into my hand.
There I was:
Dawn vs. the beast, with nothing more than five feet of cloth separating the five fingers of my right hands, from his vicious, Portuguese water dog teeth.
He sat and stared at me.
Ok, dog.
He stood up.
He walked toward me.
Back. Sit. Play dead.
He moved closer and sat at my feet. Staring hungrily at my carotid artery.
A couple of students wearing SMU T-shirts came over to pet him. He ran to meet them.
When they left, he resumed his neck biting post.
“Doesn’t CTU need you?”
He opened his mouth to say something, but Norah came out and he resumed his innocent non-vampiric dog act by sticking out his pink tongue and running toward his mommy.
But not for long.
On our way to Zest Fest 2005 (which reminds me, I really should send that poor girl, that had to work the ticket counter, a letter letting her know that she didn’t miss anything. I’d hate for her to wonder for the rest of her life.) we spotted a huge marquis advertising “Canine Agility Trials.”
“Oooh, let’s go!”
This is how it starts. You hold leash, end up at statewide dog agility trials.
Dog agility trials.
How did this start?
“I’m bored.”
“Me too.”
“Oh, My God! You know what would be sooo fun?”
Let’s set up like five hurdles, a couple of ramps, some rubber tubes, weave poles and then send Lassie through it!
“YEAH! Ooh…and we should make like a see-saw and TIME it!”
Fast forward three hundred years, add team T-shirts that say “Go Hard and Go Home,” dogs of all shapes and sizes, and voila! An afternoon of fun and amusement.
Well, not for the psychos in the matching T-shirts or the dogs who fail, but pretty much for everyone else.
I don’t know much about dog makes and models, so it’ll take a wee bit of imagination to begin to get a sense of the state-wide agility trials.
There was one dog, which looks like Dr. Evil’s hairless cat, if it were a dog.
This thing could run. At the starter gun, it was off like a shot, jumping hurdles, sliding down the ramps, wiggling itself through the tubey things, zig zagging through the poles.
I thought for sure it was done when it got to the see-saw, I mean, it couldn’t have weighed more than nine ounces soaking wet and stuffed with Purina.
But, it ran right up on the seesaw and when it got to the middle, the thing leaned its whole little body on its front paws, until the see, sawed all the way to the ground.
He then scurried down the ramp and crossed the finish line in record time.
The next doggie didn’t fare so well. This one looked like Lady from Lady & the Tramp.
She started out alright, but earned a foul when she jumped over hurdle 3 before hurdle 1. She then got a balk for jumping off the end of the ramp, inside of running down the end. The last and disqualifier misstep came on the poles.
The umpire blew the whistle and it was all over.
Her owner clipped on the leash and practically dragged her out of the arena.
The pair reappeared on the level where we were standing.
The dog was happily wagging her tail and barking.
“Shut up. Just shut up. You drink some water, and then I don’t want to hear another word from you,” the owner hissed through clenched fists and teeth.
Whoa Nelly.
Hers would not be the last disappointed owner/punished pet scene that day. There was the chihuahua whose owner wouldn’t even touch him after he was disqualified. The pit bull, yes, pit bull that was yelled at all the way back to his cage.
Of course, there were the stories of triumph – the dog owner that wouldn’t let her dog quit even though it was already disqualified. The plucky terrier that barked his way into the heads of the other dogs causing them to choke on the course.
He did a little victory dance when he crossed the finish line and yelled “in your snout” as he pointed his four paws at the competition.
I can’t believe the ref didn’t dock him for conduct unbecoming a dog.
What a son of a bitch. Get it…get it? HAHAHAHAHA
Walking down the streets of Fort Worth – where the West officially begins – we didn’t see any saloons with swinging doors, but we did see a bull standing on the corner. I actually got with in spitting distance of it.
Why is it Spaniards like to be chased by these things? Do they know about the horns?
Memo to self, tell the Spaniards about the horns.
Since there would be no other way to end a leash holding, bull observing, dog agility trials ending day in Forth Worth, we headed to the Rodeo.
The Mesquite Resistol Rodeo to be precise.
Really you smell the Rodeo long before you find your way to the seats waaaaaay up in the bleachers that were sold to you when you asked the ticket lady for suggestions about where to sit because you look poor.
We got there just in time for the singing of the National Anthem that started with a prayer.
Sitting in front of us was a family of four, grandparents, I think, and their two grandsons.
The oldest boy, who was maybe seven, at the most, was dressed in a crisply pressed white shirt, dark pants, cowboy boots and the matching cowboy hat. When we were called to stand for the singing of the anthem, he solemnly placed the hat over his heart in preparation. You can see a picture of him for yourselves, should be right next to adorable in the dictionary.
The rodeo is just like on TV….and by “TV” I mean, just like on ‘King of the Hill.’
It’s got sawdust on the ground, clowns and barrels and gates where bulls come shooting out with a huge man-sized lump on their backs. Cowboys go flying every which way, men on horseback chase the bulls back into their pens and the announcers mock everyone involved.
“Oh, sorry. The Australian cowboy gets no time for that performance. Looks like he’ll have to be content with just your appreciation.”
My favorite banter?
Announcer 1: “Come on, bull! Get back in there you bum. Your mama’s a cow and your sister’s a heifer.
Announcer 2: How do you know?
Announcer 1: I’ve been married to her for twenty years.
During the seventh inning stretch (well, that’s what I call it – I make no claim to understanding the sport of Rodeo, how it’s scored, what body slamming a calf and tying its legs have to do with anything or why oh why there was a Ben Hur Chariot race right in the middle), the announcer asked everyone from Texas to stand up.
“Turn to the people sitting and welcome them to God’s country.”
Based upon which, you’d think he was a Texan.
You’d be wrong.
“I’m from Oklahoma mahself. But we’ve got a little bit of Texas in us.”
Sad really.
Interspersed between the cowboy vs. upright calves competition, were events catered to the audience.
One crowd pleasing activity involved releasing two angry bulls into an arena where the rodeo clowns were playing poker. The PA system blasted the theme from jaws until the bulls gored the clowns in the butt and stomped the table and chairs into splinters.
Then there was the strapping of young children to the backs of racing sheep and timing them until they fell off.
At one point Norah said “we’ve come a long way from the Fort Worth agility trials.”
Personally, I wasn’t so sure.
He last non-competition event was the “children’s run.”
All the children in the stands, under age eight, were invited to the floor of the arena. About sixty kids were lined up several rows deep and given their instructions.
“Whoever is the first to tag the bull calf will win.”
Oh. This can’t be good.
The little cowboy in the row in front of us, headed down to the arena floor. His grandma offered to hold his hat for him, but he declined. I mean, really, grandma, a Bull Run without his hat? What are you thinkin’, woman?
He carefully made his way down the bleachers and onto the floor.
I took my eyes of him for a moment to stare at a woman who had brought a toddler down to the floor with her.
Suddenly, the little cowboy was back, he squeezed past his grandma and reclaimed his seat next to his brother.
“What happened?” She asked
He merely shook his head and stared at the mass of children lined up on the arena floor.
“You a chicken!” his little brother offered.
Again, he made no comment.
The starter gun went off and fourteen million children went tearing after the two bull calves in the pit. Seconds later, a whistle signaled that the game was over. A winner was declared.
As the officials were awarding the winner with his prize for tagging one calf, the other calf was on the other side of the arena.
And a little boy went after it.
From the stands, we had a clear view of little Timmy running up behind the calf, reaching out to touch it, the calf turning around and then charging him. The kid was trampled.
The calf went on to knock over two more kids, who were swooped up before they got trampled. The screaming got the attention of the officials and the calf was corralled and put back in the pens.
Two men brought out a stretcher for Timmy.
He seemed fine, but for the screaming.
The little cowboy, who also watched the whole scene unfold, stood up, turned to his grandmother and said:
“I didn’t want to be that kid.”
Seriously, adorable. Look it up.
The Rodeo broke up shortly after that and we headed back to the gayest little bar in Dallas.
It was my first time at a gay bar. Do they all have men two-stepping to Dolly Parton’s ‘best little whorehouse in Texas’ on the dance floor?
I thought so.
Oh, and you would not believe how fast the dance floor cleared out the minute the DJ played “YMCA.”
Go figure.
Well, that’s about it.
Jessica Simpson good; Village People bad.
Oh, and Jon taught me that twisters were invented because “there’s nothing God hates more than a double-wide.”
Go West, ladies and gents, Go West.

Thursday, September 22, 2005


As a joke, I was going to pre-post my annual Apprentice message.

Good thing, I didn't cause this Season, it needs tweaking.

Not all women of color are crazy.

That is all.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005


Sorry, I mean Apprentice: Martha Stewart.

Motto: Being the first self-made woman billionaire? It's a good thing.

Oh, how Oprah would kick. her. ass.

9:06 rooting for Dawna!
9:06:37 Wait! Rooting for Dawn!
9:06:41 Or..Bethany...nah, Dawn it is. Unless she turns out to be a douche.
9:07 Dude, Charles looks just like George, but we like Tracy Chapman.
9:08 Oh Bethany is soooo gonna be the first one fired.
9:09...ummm...is this the whitest show ever or is it just me? Not that there's anything wrong with that. I think the show will suck completely on it's own merits.


11:09 "Meeting martha is the culmination of everything that I am" - Carrie "I should probably slit my wrists in the bathtub right now."
11:10 "From the Producers of Jerry MaGuire...a movie about getting fired, getting dumped..." ummm...isn't that Jerry MacGuire in a nutshell?
11:11 "Message from Martha!" "oooohhh...ahhhhhh" Kill me. Kill me now. I never thought I would think of "Tyra Mail" are creative.
11:12 Wait... is she Asian?
11:13 No.
11:13 Ummm..."no...it'll make me feel like a limp wristed sissy boy?" Buddy, you're trying to be MARTHA STEWART'S ASSISTANT...if that didn't make you feel that way, nothing should.
11:14 Martha "Don't be late!" Or obstruct justice. Just don't.
11:15 Yes.
11:16 Didn't they reveal these names in the credits.
11:17 Can't wait for Television with Pity to make up a horrible nickname for Martha's daughter, Alexis. Something that gies her an eating disorder or a drug habit, hopefully.
11:18 Jetblue sucks. These commercials also suck...wait... this is Tivo, why am I watching sucky commercials.
11:18 I love Martha giving advice. "Don't drop the soap in the shower."
11:19 Okay...she might be half.
11:20 Did Dawna apply her eyebrows with a magic marker?
11:20 Uh oh. Dawn's having a meltdown...we officially now support Bethany.
11:22 Ummm..."THE DR. SEUSS ROOM" For real? Someone should sue.
11:23 "Shut up right now and listen!" Who's getting fired? Who's getting fired? Who?
11:24 CONFESSION: I started this live blog exercise as a public service...now I am just trying to get as many people as possible to suffer with me. More detailed reporting to follow.
11:24 Dawn "I want a banana before I talk."
11:25 "You should stop engaging me. I am going to take a shower now. You may join me in the bathroom, if you want, but I am going to be naked. I'm not kidding." Kidding? Jeff, that sounded like a threat. Someone should sue.
11:27 Ummm...did that story say we hate our mom, let's run away and cross the street by ourselves?
11:28 Hansel & Gretel? Jack & the Beanstalk? Wait...a...minute....they didn't make these stories up! Theives. Someone should sue!
11:29 Dawna, wash your eyebrows off!
11:30 PRIMARIUS! Look at your toga, how can you expect to show up at the coliseum like that.? Do you want me to throw you to the lions.
11:31 Martha: "As a reward, you get to eat with me. " The utensils will be plastic.
11:32 Fast forward the reward dinner? "It's on art on the table." Yup. WAIT, WHAT?
11:33 Howie: "I could possibly be falling in love with Martha Stewart"
11:33 "Dawn can be sacrificed at any time." Kicking Jim's ass. "He screwed up, so he's gone."
11:35 Jim: "You're either with me or against me....we need to sacrifice some lambs." Jim needs to move to Priamrius.
11:36 Martha "We're into the thick of it...aren't we."
11:36 "As a parent" hahahahahahahahahahahahahah
11:36 I have a Master's Degree in English.
11:37 "One of my favorite Grimm's fairytales" Of course, Martha favors the story of the witch baking children into a pie.
11:39 "I choose Dawn."
11:40 I never thought I'd miss Donald Trump.
11:40 I'm meeeeeellllting; meeeelllllting, meeellllting.
11:41 Is it me or is Alexis terrrrified of her mother? NO wire hangers!
11:42 What will Martha's catch phrase be? "You're guilty! You're a bad thing!
11:42 Jim is such a tool.
11:43 Uh oh...is Dawn getting fired?
11:45 MARTHA WRITES A DEAR JEFFREY LETTER? "Not to fail, but not to fully succeed."
11:45 Well, I do believe Miss Manners requires a handwritten note after telling someone they just don't fit.
11:46 Oh my gosh. I am crying. I have never taken more pleasure in hitting the 'Erase Now' button on my remote.




Oh, Arrested Development, what will we do when Fox no longer suffers your low ratings?

via Big Orange Michael

On an unrelated note, if anyone in the New York area has a copy of the Gilmore Girls Season premiere that they would want to share...

Tuesday, September 20, 2005


Hip Hop star sentenced to confinement in Philly.

Earlier, she issued a statement saying she had "unfortunately" been assigned to the concrete, high-rise Philadelphia facility instead of to a prison camp "as discussed."

She added: "I am not certain that this constitutes fair and equal treatment."

Her lawyer, L. Londell McMillan, said a celebrity like Lil' Kim could be in danger in the detention center.

"Why should a female hip-hop artist have to spend time in an urban concrete jungle while other female prisoners are assigned to rural, suburban-type prison camps?" said McMillan, adding that he would seek to have his client reassigned.

Who woulda thunk that a black woman would be begging to be shackled down in West Virginia?

Boy have times changed.


In my senior year of college, one of my Professors showed the movie ‘The Thin Blue Line,’ during class. I don’t remember all the details of the film, but the upshot was a black man, driving cross country, ends up on death row in Texas. That, combined with Bob Herbert's Tulia series, cemented by resolve never to step foot in Texas. No death row for me.
So, given that I am safely free and clear back in New York, Texas was definitely better than I expected – but beyond that, it actually rocked. Although, I can’t imagine that God would really choose, as his “country” a place where seltzer water cannot be found no matter how high and far you look.
I meant to write about my trip days ago, but was sidetracked by delivery hell (happy to report that 47 calls to international UPS later, I finally have received all the packages from them, I have canceled the stupid coffee table from Levitz, so they too will no longer be hearing from me, so that just leaves Time Warner and my expensive cable box which is supposedly coming on Wednesday.).

Upshot is, I am no longer exactly sure of the chronological order of things, so here are my random recollections in no particular order. “Dallas” as used in the rest of this post may refer to what in actuality may be the Park Cities, Fort Worth, Mesquite or Oklahoma, bear with me, I’m a New Yorker, we don’t know any better.

After going to the Book Depository museum, Norah and I decided to keep up our Presidential theme and hit the Dwight D. Eisenhower Birthplace museum.
I had written out directions from the Book Depository, but started to doubt myself as each turn took us to a block more run-down and desolate than the block before it.
“Who knew Dwight came from such humble beginnings.”
“Yeah…impressive rise to the presidency from here,” I said staring at the burnt out shell of a Ford.
“There it is.”
The unassuming house, sat on a half acre plot, the white paint, peeling away from the frame. We locked the doors, hid my ipod in the glove compartment and packed both our Treos safely in our pockets.
“You know, we could make this one of those ‘drive-by’ sight seeing experiences,” I offered.
No takers.
We walked inside and the woman at the counter advised us that if we ‘hurried’ we could catch the tour that just left.
Ohhh, okay. Dilapidated house is not the birthplace, it’s just the ticket counter.
In fact, as we chased after the surprisingly spry group of elderly people making their way up the walk to the real birthplace, we were no longer so impressed with Ike ‘bootstrappism.”
“Huh, this place is actually pretty nice.”
“Yeah, spoiled rich kids always get to be President.”
Stupid rich white guys.
A woman in a decidedly olive green ranger suit opened the door to the house to greet us, Norah and I were a few paces behind, and so were the last to answer her welcome questionnaire.
“Where are y’all from?”
The two couples gave the names of a couple of cities in Texas.
“New York City.”
“Well, yes, we get people from all over coming to see Ike’s birthplace.
Damn. Why is there no polite way to mention that we’re only visiting ironically?
We all crammed into the roped off two cubic square area that served as the “lobby” of the museum.
After the walk-run up from the ticket counter in the hot Dallas sun, the air conditioned lobby was refreshingly cool.
“Man, the Eisenhower’s had great AC,” I whispered.
After explaining to us that Ike’s dad had lost all the family’s money in a failed venture deal and was forced to take a job in Texas working on the railroad to support his pregnant wife and two sons, the ranger lady escorted us to a large, by New York standards, bedroom to the right of the doorway.
“This is where the 34th President of the United States was born!” She said proudly sweeping her arms around toward the queen-sized bed at the far end of the room.
The bedroom was fairly bare, a few pairs of shoes, an outfit or two hanging from a makeshift closet – nighttable, chest, one window and a wooden baby crib.
Camera flashbulbs popped with excitement, or they would have, had anyone brought a camera or been excited, then the ranger dropped the bombshell; Texas’ dirty little secret.
“These are not the actual furnishings of the Eisenhowers. The family took those with them when they moved back to Abilene, Kansas when Ike was a baby.”
Lady, I traveled over two thousand miles from New York City to see Eisenhower’s pram and dagnabit, you will show me his pram, not some cheap facsimile of his pram.
She went on to explain that Eisenhower was the only one of the family’s eight boys to be born in Texas. He left as a fifteen-month-old infant and the family, finally out from the disgrace of the dad losing all their money and forcing then to move to that Texas, albeit briefly, closed the Texas chapter of their lives, put it in a lockbox and shoved it way the hell under the bed, vowing never to speak of it again.
But when Ike’s face was splashed all over the papers during WWII, an old retired librarian remembered that an ‘Eisenhower’ family once lived on the block. She wondered if it was the same family and ---EUREKA!
A craptacular reason to visit Denison, Texas was born.
The rest of the tour followed in a similar fashion as we went from room to room taking the “toys Ike might have played with, if these were his toys or if he was of the toy playing age,” “the kind of bread box, Ike’s mother might have stored their bread in,” “the sort of iron used in the time.” The tour of the “type of kitchen the Eisenhowers probably had,” yielded a funny back and forth between the couples with us.
“My mama had a washingboard like that.”
“Yeah, me and my brother used to sell the ice blocks to put in those ice boxes.”
“Wow, you don’t look that old,” the ranger offers.
“No ma’am. I ain’t old, we were just poor.”
At the end of the tour, we were instructed to head out back to the life-size bronze statue of Ike in the backyard (no doubt just like the one that would have been there when the Eisenhowers lived there). Inscribed on the side was an admonition to all young people, that Eisenhower set us an example to greatness.
“Oh, and please stop by our gift shop on the way out.”
Oh, Ike, you scoundrel you!
Norah and I decided to skip the introductory film on the President’s life, figuring that since the real one was probably in Kansas, we didn’t want to ruin our future trip over to Abilene by getting the preview in Texas.
We got back in the car and headed North…welcome to Oklahoma!
The Native American state?
Oklahoma was a lot like Texas, highways, gas stations, even fast food joints.
However, when we stopped off a Sonic for lunch, the differences became glaringly apparent.
We parked the car and headed to the window to order. A sign told us a staff meeting was going on.
We went around to the glass door and a young lady in a Sonic hat said that we had to order from the electronic kiosk in the center of the dining area.
Ok, so she might have just pointed a finger at the electronic kiosk in the center of the dining area, while firmly blocking our way past the glass doors and into the store.
Between us, Norah and I have degrees from six of the finest educational centers in the world, so know that when I tell you we circled that kiosk a few times before taking a stab at ordering, that Oklahoma might as well have been Japan.
Finally, Norah pressed a bright red button. It triggered a response manned by Charlie Brown’s home room teacher.
Waaaa waaaa waaaa shhhhhhh waaaaa.
“Um…do we order here?”
We come in peace.
“waaa waaaa skkkkkkkk shhhhh waaaaaa”
“Uhm….one Sonic special, diet coke…Dawn what do you want?”
To get back in the car and find a McDonald’s? Teenaged eyes were peering at us through the staff meeting behind the glass doors.
“Uhmm…same thing…with ketchup and no pickles, with a Dr. Pepper?”
“Ok, make that two Sonic specials, diet coke and a Dr. Pepper.”
The gigantic box “repeated” our order in a quick series of morse code static blips: long, short, long, long, short question mark inflection.
We looked at each other.
“Yes, that’s right.”
We sat down around a giant, bright red, round metal table and waited.
I wonder what shape Oklahoman burgers are?
Do their beverages come in cups?
Burning with anticipation, or from sitting on metal benches under the hot sun, we passed the time with idle chit chat.
Finally, a girl came out carrying a tray of paper cups and foodstuffs wrapped in paper.
She set it down and headed inside.
“Wait! How do we know which is the diet coke…or the ketchup burger?”
No! Norah, don’t anger the food God of the talking alien machine…this may be one of those situation where they turn the people who get out of there cars, into speaker boxes to take garbled orders for all of eternity.
The girl came back and squinted at the tray.
“Um…well…like I just started working here. I haven’t worked in the kitchen yet, so I like don’t know how they umm…like mark them? I could go ask?”
Suddenly, Oklahoma was feeling very Southern California.
“That’s okay. We’ll figure it out.”
I bit into my burger and happily, ketchup oozed out the sides.
Norah watched jealously.
“I wanted a ketchup burger too.”
“But the machine scared you, didn’t it?”
She bit into her own burger glumly.
“Next time, we shouldn’t get out the car.”
After lunch, we headed to the Choctaw Casino.
The outside of the place reminded me of “L.A.’s” Commerce Casino, with rows of parked cars and nondescript glass doors, but any comparison between this place and a real Casino ends there.
Imagine your local community rec center. Now shove in as many slots machines as it’ll hold. Ok, now put a big TV and a room full of phones in the back. Get some betting slips and turn on OTB. We’re almost there. Now squeeze the slot machines together, making some room for about five or six blackjack tables, put the unhappiest people you ever saw behind the tables; fill the place with stale cigarette smoke and lonely desperate people.
All done.
We took a lap around the joint, I tried to play a slot machine, but it wouldn’t take my quarter.
Thus, endeth the visit to the Choctaw Nation.
Man Oklahoma, for the Native American state, you guys sure stick your Indians in the rattiest places.
We got back to Dallas in time to have dinner with Nora’s Husband, his dad, grandma and sister.
In keeping with our historical day, we had dinner at The Egyptian, where Ruby dined the night before killing Oswald.

The next morning I woke up and asked the question I always inevitably ask whenever I leave the Tri-State area?

“Is Texas considered the South?”

Insert answer.

“What I meant was: do you guys have the Waffle House here?”
After twenty minutes spent trying pitch alternative breakfast options, I got my hosts to drive me to the nearest WH.

I’ll admit it wasn’t the waffle-cious goodness I had remembered. The waffles were thinner and harder than I remembered. Of course, that didn’t really matter because with a guy chain smoking right next to our table, I held my breath through most of the meal and couldn’t taste a whole heck of a lot.
By the time we hit our next stop “Zest Fest 2005,” my sense of taste had completely returned --- unfortunately.
Before plunking down the thirty dollars for three adult tickets, we made some inquiries.
“Hi…is this thing worth ten dollars?”
“Oh…yeah. I wish I didn’t have to work so ah could go een mahself,” said the shiny happy young woman behind the plexiglass.
I did see many families leaving the arena with smiles on their faces and full plastic bags in each hand…ok, let’s do it!
I can’t remember whose idea the Fest was, but I think the three of us knew it was a mistake right away.
The floor of the arena was packed with little vendor booth hawking everything from pineapple mushroom bar-b-cue sauce to an Indian (from India, Indian, not Oklahoman Indian) ice cream novelty bar, whose packaging derides the “airiness” or Western ice cream.
I tasted a few of the offerings, including something I thought was chicken but turned out to be coleslaw…coleslaw covered in barbecue sauce.
It barely hit my tongue before I spit it back out into the little mouthwash cup from whence it came.
“It’s got quite a byyyyte don’ it,” the sckeevy guy in the chef’s hat drawled as I searched for a trash can and mouth disinfectant.
“Bite? No…that’s not the problem.”
I moved on to the next booth and sampled some “salsa.”
After I spit that out, I vowed no more experimenting.
I headed straight for the Strawberry Daquiri stand, ordered up a pitcher and waited for the Norah and her husband to find me.
On our way out, Nora’s husband spotted “Miss Texas” sitting at the door.
“Hey! We should get her autograph!”
What does he mean ‘we?’
“Uh…you ask her.”
As we approached the table, her handler stood up to greet us. She flashed us that pageant winning smile.
“Ok, wait…but have her make it out to Dawn!”
Sometimes having an alias comes in handy out in the real world too!
He smiled and said.
“Hi, can you sign a picture for my friend?”
“Sure,” Miss Texas said shifting her weighty crown to a more comfortable position and getting her writing hand all ready.
“Make it out to ‘Dawn’,” he said pointing at me as I grinned as ironically as possible.
“No problem. How do you spell that?”
That’s why they’re called beauty queens and not brain queens.


4:05 p.m. “This promises to be the most ragged show we’ve ever done”
Ace cuts his opening rant short.
4:06 p.m. Ace is kicking ass in online poker. He is going to Vegas for the World Series. (Hmmm...hope he'll be reporting that income on his tax returns. -ed.)
Guest is Jack Kelly, national security columnist. He was not fired by USA Today.
Jack Kelly…name is sooo familiar…was he the Christian Bale character in Newsies?
It was the feds job to do everything and it was all Bush’s fault and Michael Brown’s fault, have I been out of touch for so long that there are Michael Brown apologists now?
“Response to Katrina was within guidelines and faster for previous hurricanes. And the obstacles were much greater and they were category five hurricanes.”
Well, then: Job well done. Raises for everyone.
Karol: Was it that the media needed some hysteria: Yeah, city underwater, people on rooftops, rapes in the evacuation center, NO BIG.
Crazy hysterical media.
Mostly perpesterous that it was Bush’s fault.
“It isn’t clear whether they are talking about Louisiana FEMA or federal FEMA”
Lousiana DHS kept the Red Cross out of the Centers.
Ace knew a reporter who covered the legal beat and he basically said that “because he covered the law, he was as well trained on the law as a lawyer.”
“Do you get that sense from your colleagues?”
“I don’t even know that they are experts on reportage. Their spelling is not very good.”
“Anderson Cooper is prettier than Dan Rather.”
Ace: He’s prettier than my girlfriend.
Man, I wish F-train would call. We could be planning our trip. Figuring out logistics, book a room, exchange tips and decide on how much money to bring…
Oh, sorry. Were they still talking?
“Storytelling is making things up. It’s certainly not news and I think it’s bad business.”
“Unless CNN is just catering to people suffering from BDS. Bush Deranged Syndrome.”
If I was more technologically savvy, I would set up a Ace minutes talking counter. It would stop and start whenever Ace is talking.
I predict that the 55 minute broadcast would be broken down to Ace: 39 minutes Guest: 11 Karol: 5 minutes
“If you want to save the world become a social worker or a soldier.”
“Do you have any criticism for the federal government?” Wow. Zing.
Ahh…yes, Karol, the BIG problem was the poor PR response.
What PR is not “substantive issues?”
Brown should never have been the head of FEMA.
Jack Kelly: Blah blah Nagin ...insinuates lawyers stopped him from doing something...we need to do what Bill the Butcher suggests(dead air) you know, the character from Henry VI who says "kill all the lawyers."
(HAHAHAHHAHAHA…there is nothing so amusing as a little bit of education. The full Shakespeare “kill the lawyers quote” is in response to the question "how can we take over the country and bend everyone to our will.
It's like how can you take anyone seriously that quotes something they have so clearly never read.-ed.)
He would give FEMA an incomplete.
Nagin and Blanco between an F and a D.
Media would get double F. Ooooh. Double F.
Karol: has the media gone beyond irresponsible by reporting the dead before we knew?
“That goes back to Nagin. It was picked up without examination by the media.”
(Riiight because no one guessed at the number of 9/11 dead. The number 50,000 per twin tower was never cited by anyone.-ed.)
None of which was challenged by Tim Russert who let him go “on and on and on.” (First, the guy never said it was his mother and two what the hell was Tim Russert supposed to do? Yell “Stop crying you big wuss. Produce the tape recordings of these conversations!” -ed.)
(Ooops, forgot about putting times on the side...been a while. -ed.)
4:29 "New climate of fear in the newsrooms?"
"I used to say I was in a declining industry, but I used to be declining faster than it was. Now I fear the industry is declining faster than I would have it go."
4:30 "Rather is the Al Gore of windbag"
4:31 Karol: "Jack Kelly is speaking truth to power."
4:32 "Left has gotten reactionary, especially liberals in journalism."
4:33 Does Ace really have an "Aunt Susie"? Get the powerline guys on this -- STAT!
4:34 Blah blah hippies blah blha tye die...who is this guy? The dad from some sixties Gidget movie?
4:35 Karol: Maybe he is right to be scared. You can't have fake stories like your memo thing go unchecked. (Riiiiight, but weapons of mass destruction that gets right through? -ed)
4:36 Journalists are not used to people being able to fire back. -Jack Kelly
4:37 I thought the guest had to go by 4:30? LIES, where's powerline! Or that Air America obsessed guy? Bring down the African-American flag.
4:38 Jack Kelly: The state department is always for the status quo, no matter how much they fought the status quo before it became the status quo. "I would like to see Iraq stay together. The middle east would benefit from a multi ethnic democracy. That's what we are...to be mature...this is what a nation needs to get to."
"I don't see it as a great tragedy...there would be some great beenfits if Iraq were to fracture."
4:40 If Iraq were to break up, Iran would soon follow. "A readjustment of borders would not be a terrible thing. (Dude and there are Mexicans who would rather be Texans, Canadians who would rather be New Yorkers...ain't gonna happen, guy.)
4:45 VON BEK!
4:47 13 minutes to go.
4:48 (Huh. I thought Farrahkan was dead...cancer or something. No? -ed.)
4:49 Are they still on? Last thing I heard was "more unhinged elements of the black left." (Maybe "a coupla hard, pipe-hittin' n*****, went to work on them with a pair of pliers and a blow torch."
4:52 Eight minutes to go and not a mention of me. Sigh.
4:53 Alberto has declared a war on terror...agents have snarked that they guess that means the war on terror is won. Karol "Yeah...but I'm sure they'll be happy to do it." hhahahaha. Karol made a funny.
4:57 Conservatives don't trust Gonzalez (Siednote, is it just me or does anyone else miss Ashcroft.)
4:59 "I don't wan to be too pro-pron" (really? cause that's not the sennse that I'm getting.
5:00 Well, Ace, a promise made is a promise kept. One half liberal New York Timmes'


Which lone crusader pretending to be dead got more babes, David Bruce Banner (aka David Benton, David Baker, David Brenner, David Biden, etc.) or Michael Knight (aka Michael Long)?


I am now definitely certain that death row is cruel and unusual, if only for the waiting.


So now I'm scaring you! We're all gonna die, crushed horribly from above.


Monday, September 19, 2005


The first day of school looms.

I mean work.




That’s a funny word for a creepy feeling.


Suresh Joachim broke the Guinness world record for the longest time spent watching TV. He finished Friday with 69 hours and 48 minutes.

After passing the previous record of 50 hours and 7 minutes Thursday, Joachim continued until shortly after 7 a.m. Friday morning (EDT).

Joachim did his TV viewing in the lobby of WABC-TV as part of the "Guinness World Record Breaker Week" on the syndicated "Live With Regis and Kelly."

Sitting on a brown leather couch, he watched nothing but ABC shows.

Joachim diplomatically said that:

"The hardest part, Joachim said on "Regis and Kelly," was "I couldn't watch the people" -- the many, waving passers-by on the street outside the ABC studio."

HA! The hardest part was watching only ABC shows. That should get him a special record.


I have never whiffed Emmy predictions more completely than I managed this year.

Although I don't know who won animated...so I could be 1/15.

And to think, I know more about TV than anyone...how very Phil Hellmuth of me.

But in my defense, any event where Patricia Arquette BEATS ANYONE in a best acting category, has got to be rigged.


At six in the morn
I prefer dirty streets
cops and tickets suck

Leash your stupid dog
Or get it out of my way
Where's the dogcatcher

Sunday, September 18, 2005


My little namesake was born yesterday! Her parents spell and pronounce her name differently, but still.

Saturday, September 17, 2005


The good thing about living on the Upper East Side is that everyone I am related to live at least an hour and a half away, across a bridge and an estuary.

The bad thing about living on the Upper East Side is that I have heard the phrase "the U.N. is in session," twice, in as many days, with a tone that suggests that I am supposed to care.

Thursday, September 15, 2005


I was baking this evening and the smoke alarm went off. I opened a window to get the smoke out, and the burglar alarm on the window went off.


Curiosity is good; asking a question that makes someone look at you, perplexed, and ask 'have you ever taken a science class' is bad.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005


Pop Princess finally meets boy she won't spread her legs for.


"So is this it? Every conversation will be about deliveries you haven't received? Because, we can take a break for three weeks or so and you can call me when you're all moved in." -Karol "and you people wonder why I hate her" Sheinin

Yeah, Karol sucks, but she has a point. My days, nights, dreams, random scribblings all now tend to one singular theme: Where. The. Hell. Is. My. Stuff?

No one should ever try to put a household together from scratch in under a month. What was I thinking trying to get internet and cable and furniture at the same time? I got greedy ladies and gentlemen --- phone line AND electricity? I may as well have decided to go visit the moon.

I have become an assortment of customer numbers, tracking numbers, work order numbers, confirmation numbers. With a phone stuck to each ear, I pace the floors berating operators at UPS, Levitz, Time Warner Cable and various insurance companies.

But everything seems to be coming together, finally.

Just never on-time or in the quantities or desired color.

I've managed to go from companies who don't deliver the items I bought, to companies that get my order just enough right that I have to make the decision: "Dammit...is this worth hearing the 'your time is valuable to us, but please hold' instruction over and over?

Coffee Table delayed yet another week? No.

Wrong cable box? Yes.

(That, by the way, was the conversation of the day.
Me: You gave me the wrong cable box.
Time Warner Genius: But the other box is more expensive.
Me: But you have already charged me for it.
TWG: Oh. Yes, I see that.)

I was getting worried yesterday that I was developing an anger management problem because when my Metrocard didn't work at the turnstile, I almost put my fist through the face of the toll booth clerk who nonchalantly shrugged her shoulders and said something really unhelpful.

But I am happy to report that fourteen hours of sleep, two hours of internet in my very own apartment and nine hours of TV in my very own bed has repaired me to my previously cheery, even-keeled self.


I still hate UPS.

And Levitz.

Oh, and Karol.


Freddy vs. Michael.

Hmm...isn't there a grim 1990s horror flick with exactly the same premise?

Sunday, September 11, 2005


On Friday morning I found myself face to face with the President of the United States. The year was 1963.
Tan and young, JFK sat next to the podium at a gathering for Texas businessmen as they presented him with a genuine cowboy hat, “to protect him from the rain.”
The video was mostly shades of gray, as was the style at the time, but I suspect the hat was white – the President was a good guy after all.
As he steps to the podium to accept the gift, Kennedy was all smiles.
He gracefully thanks them, compliments his wife and prepares to return to his seat. The crowd shouts for him to put the hat on. He raises the lid, hesitates and returns it to his side.
He faces the audience, smiles again and says with his distinct Boston drawl: “I will er …put it on Monday at the White House. You all will have to come down there to see it on me.”
The room erupts with laughter and applause.
It was November 21nd.
Kennedy would not live to see Monday or the White House ever again. Or, for that matter, have much of a head left to put it on.
The film continues with pictures of the President and the First Lady landing at Love Field. The footage includes a reporter’s live action description of the events and outfits, particularly Mrs. Kennedy’s “striking rose suit.”
Kennedy headed for the throngs of people lining the airstrip to shake hands and pose for pictures. The reporter remarked that this was very typical of the President, despite the fact that it drove the Secret Service crazy.
After a few minutes, the President and his wife take their places in the presidential limousine and begin making their way to the Dallas Trade Center.
My heart is beating surprisingly fast as I watch the car wind its way through the streets on film.
The crowds are holding welcome signs and the President and Governor are waving.
“Go faster!” I hear myself whisper to the monitor.
But they can’t hear me.
The narrator gives the time.
The cheesiest ominous music you’ve ever heard in an educational film swells below the picture.
The motorcade turns onto Elm Street.
“Oh God….Go FASTER! Or stop. Turn around!”
I have just seen the spot –ever marked with two exs – one black for the first shot, the second blood red-so I know it’s about to happen.
The video stops.
My audio tour guide of the Sixth Floor Museum tells me to make my way over to the next exhibit.
This one is of stills. Photos and film cut and enlarged to retell Kennedy’s assassination in five-second increments from that fateful ‘hairpin turn’ turn, to Jackie’s frantic climb out on the trunk of the limousine.
I followed the picture timeline to its last photo, ending at the preserved (or recreated) scene of the stack of boxes in front of the Depository’s sixth floor windows.
Scrawled in large invisible ink across the glass: Lee Harvey Oswald was here.
The rest of the exhibit somberly retells the story that so many of us, even those born decades later, know by heart.
The race to the hospital, Walter Cronkite On-Air pronouncement at 1 p.m., Johnson sworn in with Jackie – still in the bloody suit – standing at his side, the flag draped coffin, little JFK Jr.’s salute.
The notes left by other visitors to the museum that day expressed the same feelings…although one entry also added that she didn’t think Oswald acted alone.
The top floor of the museum was a gallery of news clips and front pages from around the world on November 23rd. Pictures of a young Jim Lehrer, Dan Rather and even the Canadian Peter Jennings shone back from the exhibit walls.
How could we come back from that?
Forty-two years later, the grief, shock, the unfairness, is still so palpable and I wasn’t even there.
My flight back to New York last night, took me directly over Ground Zero.
The memorial in lights – two bright beams where the Twin Towers once stood, stroked the right wing of the plane as we passed overhead.
I kept my eye on the skyline for the entire length of Manhattan.
The grief. The shock. The unfairness.
Of course, we remember. Children of children not yet born will remember.
Even when the 9/11 event planners in their infinite wisdom fail to bring us the names of the dead read by 3rd cousins twice removed on the victims’ mother’s side.

Saturday, September 10, 2005



QB D. Culpepper (Min - QB)

WR H. Ward (Pit - WR)

WR C. Chambers (Mia - WR)

RB C. Martin (NYJ - RB)

RB J. Lewis (Bal - RB)

TE A. Crumpler (Atl - TE)

W/T P. Burress

K Vanderjact

Def Buffalo Bills

Friday, September 09, 2005


Must one take to believe that Baskin Freaking Robbins is better than Coldstone Creamery?


"Why is it you can say 'Jersey,' but you can't say 'York.'



I figure between waking up at six every morning for the last five days, in order to get to my new apartment in time for deliveries, and flying to Central America yesterday (that's where Texas is right? The letters at the end of the CNN time stamp would so indicate), I am running on something like 16 hours of sleep for the week.

Of course, since my apartment barely has a bed, (I got the mattress and box spring a couple of days ago, but no headboard or footboard or rest of the bedroom set for that matter. Something the good people at Levitz will be getting an eyeful about as soon as the fuckers at Time Warner set up my internet service...I'm thinking something along the lines of "Dear Levitz, When I entered your establishment last month and paid you $3500 for a bedroom set, it was because I wanted a bedroom set. It was not because I was lonely and needed to receive daily calls from your delivery service telling me when my bedroom set would not be delivered, only to have them show up three weeks later on the last agreed upon date with just a mattress and a boxspring. I assume from the nonchalant response of your salesperson that "well, you'll just have to wait," that your company is replete with assholes and will, as a result, have ample space into which to shove the aforementioned mattress and boxspring.)

Sorry, I digress.

Anyway, since I don't even have a bed, I certainly don't have cable or internet, so I will forgo the sleep to get a proper internet fix.

Central America has been great so far (and I'm not just saying that because Norah (ha ha) and her husband, who comments under the secret identity of "Nora's Husband, have threatened to have their vicious Portuguese Water Doberman Pincher Rotweiller Dog bite me to death in my sleep if I write anything bad on my blog.) I am a journalist, you see, and nothing, not even being mauled to death by a tragically misnamed dog on the brink of suicide because of his inability to either speak Portuguese and his deep abiding fear of water.
So believe me when I say everything here is absolutely perfect and wonderful and really I have never had better hosts. :-)

Norah volunteered to pick me up from the airport and although I got a little worried about that working out when I noticed that my connecting flight to Dallas left Chicago at 12:25 p.m., and my flight from New York touched down at the Chicago airport at 12:39 p.m.

Luckily, I had that Time Date Line thing working for me this time and it turns out I have almost an hour to kill in the windy city. I realized I needed to set my Fantasy Football lineup before the Thursday game, so I went in search of a computer. Yeah, not so much, although a vendor did excitedly point me toward the TTY telephone.
"Computer there!"

"Uh...no. I don't think so."

"No? But you type," he said drumming his fingers in the air as if typing.

"Yeah, but it's um...a phone...for deaf people," as is my vast understanding of the TTY machine.

"Well, you type," he insisted.

"Yeah...maybe later," I said walking away.

Oh well, blogging and setting up the league would have to wait.

My flight arrived in Dallas a bit early, so I wasn't that surprised that Norah wasn't in the waiting area yet. I took a seat by the baggage claim and waited.

And waited.

After ten minutes, I decided to look for a passenger pick up area. After a few paces, I found myself awash in a sea of fatigues and military issu duffel bags. All around were men and women in uniform and military boots sitting on chairs and the carpet in the Terminal.

Ok...this is not the right place. Definitely don't want my first trip to Texas to end up with my serving on the front lines somewhere...I know they are desperate for people these days.

I head back toward the other end of the terminal and decide to checkin with the airline desk clerk to see if the flight got in earlier than I thought.

"Hi...can you tell me what time the flight from Chicago was supposed to get in?"

Without responding, she pointedly turn to face the board behind her with felt lettering indicating that all the recent ATA arrivals were "On Time."

"umm... yeah, I know it's 'On Time.' I was on the flight, but the pilot said something about us being early and someone was supposed to be meeting me and I just wanted to know how early I was."

"Oh. It was bout ten minutes early. Why don't you call their cell?"

Good question.

"No...I don't have the number...is there a waiting area?"

"This is it. Do you know where they live in Dallas."

Huh. Yet another very good question.

I thanked her and decided to call 411 to try to get a number.

"Sorry, nothing for Norah in Dallas...although we have a number a Ns you could try. What street does she live on?"

Yeah...um...street...ok can you try Nora's Husband?

"Hold for the number."

Score! I dialed the number I was given.

A woman answered.

"Hello may I speak to Norah?"

"Wrong number."

I redialed.

She picked up again.

"Norah please," I said trying very unsucessfully to sound different from the girl that just called there asking for Norah.

"No one by that name is here. Who is this," said the highly irritated woman on the other end.

"ummm..sorry," I said hanging up.

I did another walk through of the airport, careful to sidestep the platoon this time, still nothing.

OK...I ran through the sequence of events...I wrote them saying I'd love to come visit, they wrote back saying they'd love to have me visit and promised me the tiniest horse alive, I said sweet and sent them my flight plans and they said they'd pick me up.

Maybe they were kidding? Is it one of those "sure, we should have lunch kinda things that doesn't really turn into lunch?"

I mean they didn't give me a phone number or an address...

Or, Kaz had said that Norah was sick, maybe she was too ill to come and there's no way to reach me. Or she's dead.

Maybe if I could send an email or post and SOS on my blog...I called Karol to see if she could get online for me, but she wasn't there.

By now another flight had landed and the baggage claim area was filling up again...shit...do I go into the city and try to figure out something from there or do I ---


Hooray, not dead. Dead would have been such a bummer.

"Where have you been? I have been here forever!"

And evidently I am not the only one with the over active imagination:

"I totally thought you were like some al qaeda operative who buys plane tickets and then gives them away. Or I figured you were dead or that you weren't coming."

Turns out she was waiting in the last 10 feet of the airport past the airline customer service desk that I stopped at.

I figured I wouldn't be a total loser and have the first thing I did in Dallas be get online, so I suggested we go Dealey Plaza and check out the JFK memorial, but when we got lost on the way there, I gave up all pretense and broke down.

"Actually...do you have the internet at home??!"

So, indeed, the first thing I did in Dallas was set my Fantasy Lineup and blog. Norah walked the dog and then we hung out in the apartment for a bit while the Dog cried and cried in his cage upstairs.

"Let's get out of here, I can't stand hearing him whimper," Norah said, quickly adding, "not because I feel sorry for him, because it's annoying."

Ah, if ever I had a favorite kind of dog person, this would be it.

We met her husband and a guy I swear is Dorian Davis in ten years for dinner at a Tex Mex restaurant frequented by George Michael.

Apparently unaware that I have never been drunk in all my life, Nora's Husband cautioned me about the house drink specialty which has so much alcohol it would prevent strokes with its blood thinning capability, "although you might die of a paper cut."

I finished the glass and made a note of scoffing at its potency with a hearty laugh.

"Oh, you laugh now..."

(And I laugh still -ed.)

We then hit a fareweell party for one of Norah's former colleague's, at which Titanic would voted most overrated movie of all time. (Agree/Disagree? Comment below...so long as your comment is 'Disagree.')

Anyway, my exhaustion and that missing hour has caught up with me (it has nothing whatsoever to do with any effects of the Mambo, at which I continue to laugh), so I will crawl into my newly made up sleeping quarters, confident that since neither Norah or Nora's husband will read this post till morning, Kujo will remain safely locked away from my sleeping jugular.

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