Friday, August 31, 2007

Happy Anniversary

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Today is mine and Brian's anniversary. It's been a year...which is nothing for some people, but for me it's a huge accomplishment-- one of my realest steps toward becoming an actual grown-up man-type person.

Addendum: C. Dale's comment prompted me to clarify a little about the line "nothing for some people".

I have always been a little staggered by people who can seemingly float from long-term relationship to long-term relationship with little difficulty. I always seemed to lack that talent--due to a) my own commitment issues or b) poor object choices (I'll leave it for those who know me to decide which was more decisive.) With Brian it's never been like that. No contest of wills, no tip-toeing, no real fits of pique or foul temper (for me that last one is almost unheard of.) It has been, despite the physical distance, ridiculously easy. I recognized early on that he was special and that the two of us together worked very very well and that, for me at least, this was nothing but a long-term deal.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Tea(room) for Two

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Brian sent me this nifty little bit from Slate's Explainer column, addressing some of the issues regarding Larry Craig's (R, Middle Stall) recent misfortune that have not yet been beaten into the ground by the media.

Is tapping your foot really code for public sex?
Yes. The signal has been around for decades in the United States and Europe. Generally, one person initiates contact by tapping his foot in a way that's visible beneath the stall divider. If the second person responds with a similar tap, the initiator moves his foot closer to the other person's stall. If the other person makes a similar move, the first will inch closer yet again. The pair usually goes through the whole process a few times, just to confirm that the signals aren't an accident.

Next, one of the men will slide his hand under the divider. This usually means he's inviting the other person to present himself, as if to say, "Show me what you got." The partner can respond by kneeling on the floor and presenting his penis or rear end underneath the divider. Or he can swipe his own hand under the divider, as if to say, "You go first." Some married men make a point of displaying their wedding band (like Sen. Craig allegedly did) to make themselves more alluring.

[ed note: Frankly it'd take a helluva lot more than flashing a ring to make him "alluring" much less"more alluring"--but that's just personal preference.]

Is it wise to use a "wide stance" when you go to the bathroom?

No. When you're sitting on the toilet, spreading your feet and leaning forward tightens the levator ani muscles that control defecation. If you're having trouble passing stools, you should take the opposite of a wide stance, and lean back. Doctors recommend this technique to relax the bowel muscles.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

The Bitch is Back

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A mature blue-tailed skink--not to be confused
with the more populous big haired skank.

I'm back to blogging now that the festivities of last weekend are over and I'm not chained to the kitchen. Overall the party last Saturday was a success...the food was good, people ate and drank and it was a good time. That all said--I don't think I'm ever going to attempt such an ambitious undertaking any time soon.

Brian and I went to Pittsburgh on Monday and did some shopping and had dinner with friends. It was a nice little day trip and so much more comfortable weather-wise in Pittsburgh than here. Nothing really notable happened except an elderly woman stared at my fauxhawk when we walked into Boscov's. I'm not sure why...I saw much more objectionable hair during our visit.

I am seriously sick of harvesting vegetables. So far this week it's been about 25 gallons of tomatoes and an unknown quantity of beans...I'm ready for this all to be over. I'm much more entertained and enthused by coaxing the plants into vigor and thrive than I am dealing with their product. It has made me think of my grandmother, though. She would load every available flat space in her house with produce and be the closest to proud I remember seeing her.

I was shifting around empty planters and pots on the back porch last night and I spooked a blue-tailed skink from its hiding place. I was really surprised to see one that close to the house...I knew they were indigenous here but I'd never seen one before. It was a juvenile, about the length of a toothpick and very slender. Its tail is startlingly blue...much more intense than the photo allows.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007


I'm not the most facile or adept anagrammer...but I thought this was a pretty good one.

Tom by day: staid, hairy.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Criminally Untalented, Yes...but the FBI???

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So...just so I understand...a congenital lack of talent and bad project choices had nothing to do with Steven Seagal's presently moribund was the FBI. According to ABC News, that's Seagal's story.

[I]t's the FBI's fault that he now stars in low-budget movies that go straight to video. And he wants an apology from the bureau.

The 56-year-old pony-tailed martial-arts expert broke a long silence today to complain that his career was devastated by an FBI affidavit in 2002 that described allegations that he was involved in a plot to intimidate two journalists out of writing stories about him.

"False FBI accusations fueled thousands of articles saying that I terrorize journalists and associate with the mafia," Seagal told the Los Angeles Times. "These kinds of inflammatory allegations scare studio heads and independent producers -– and kill careers."

Thousands of stories? Thousands??? Are they basing this on the number of outlets that picked up stories? Because, if not, well...Jesus, the mind boggles.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Because It's Sunday

If you don't know the site Baptists For Brownback, check it out. It's one of the funniest pieces of parody I've found in a while. Here's a snippet of their Sunday Morning Prayer for the Children.

Dear Lord,

Our little ones will head off to school in the morning with brand new book bags, crayons, pencils, and tablets.

The lucky ones will be going to a private school where they will be taught by God-fearing, America-Loving educators who believe that a child’s mind is a terrible thing to waste. Sadly, the children from lower-income homes will be herded off to that den of iniquity known as the Public School System.

There they will be taught awful things and horrible lies, that no innocent little child should ever hear such as how their great-great-great-great grandparents were primates, that it’s OK to be Gay, that condoms and not abstinence prevent pregnancy, and that our Commander in Chief, President George Walker Bush, is a buffoon with a personal agenda.


If it is your will, Papa Lord, close these babies minds to the left-wing lunacy that they will be exposed to and let this next generation our Your children grow up to be Right-Wing Christian Fundamentalists and staunch Republicans.

Truly, it's an anointed website.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Death Becomes Her

So the old representation of Mexico's Santa Muerte was too scary? She needs an Extreme Makeover to be au courant? Fine.

But did they have to make her look like Anjelica Huston in The Mists of Avalon?

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Sunday, August 12, 2007

Pa Dum Ching or, the Rim shot.

I got an email from a friend last night with the subject: Of course we saw it and thought of you!. Apparently in Salem, MA there is a rather pruriently named liquor store. Enjoy the pictures.

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photos courtesy of Shlee.

Kitchen Bit

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A few months ago I was obsessed with finding the perfect fried chicken recipe--I tried several, combined several, but am still in search. I found a recipe that claimed it had replicated KFC's proprietary blend of 11 herbs and spices. It made for an okay coating, but wasn't great--it was very aromatic but the flavors didn't carry through. I decided to adapt it as a brine to use before roasting or grilling. I experiemented and made a few tweaks but I've found the blend that suits me. So, I'm putting it up here. We still have a few weeks of grilling season left and are heading into fall and winter when roasting a chicken doesn't also entail roasting yourself.

Brine for Chicken

2.5 quarts of water
1/3 cup salt
1/3 cup sugar
2 bay leaves
1 T paprika
1 t black pepper (ground)
1 t garlic powder
1 t onion powder
1 t basil
1 t oregano
1 t allspice (ground)
1 t sage
¾ t chili powder
¾ t celery seed (ground)
½ t thyme
½ t savory
½ t dry mustard
1 carrot, washed and chopped

Note: I process all my spices and herbs (excepting the bay leaves) through a spice grinder before adding to the mix. Maybe it’s some culinary version of the placebo effect, but it seems to intensify the flavor.

Combine 1.5 quarts of water and all ingredients in a large pot. Stir well to incorporate and bring to a low boil over medium heat. Reduce heat and simmer for about 45 minutes. Remove from heat. Allow to cool. Add remaining quart of cold water.

If brining a whole chicken brine from 4-6 hrs. If brining bone-in chicken pieces brine only 2-3 hours. For boneless, an hour to an hour and a half should be sufficient. Over-brining can make chicken rubbery or too salty.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Junk (Web and Otherwise)

You Are 98% Feminist

You are a total feminist. This doesn't mean you're a man hater (in fact, you may be a man).
You just think that men and women should be treated equally. It's a simple idea but somehow complicated for the world to put into action.

You Are an Excellent Cook

You're a top cook, but you weren't born that way. It's taken a lot of practice, a lot of experimenting, and a lot of learning.
It's likely that you have what it takes to be a top chef, should you have the desire...

I'm a total foodie. I love cooking and playing with recipes. I've been working on the menu for the upcoming birthday/anniversary party in a couple weeks. It's going to be excessive and decadent. I can't wait.


My home county is taking part in the "largest yard sale in West Virginia." Over the course of three days there are approximately 120 "official" yard sales scattered throughout the county affiliated with this debacle. 120.

This is not counting the rough dozen or so unaffiliated ones I drove past. It's nightmarish. I flipped off and cussed out three people before 8:00 am. Generally, I'd call that a good day, but usually I like the morning drive to work to be quiet and a little peaceful.

Being almost sideswiped by gawking bargain hunters is not my idea of a good time. I've noticed that I'm becoming more direct and aggressive when I flip off or cuss out offending drivers. I make sure I catch their eye and that they see. That's safe enough around here...but next time I'm in Baltimore I need to be careful.

Boob News

O Japan. Your culture never ceases to fascinate. Especially your foodstuffs. Feast your eyes on the F-Cup Cookie.

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These tasty morsels according to
[t]he makers of F-Cup Cookies claim women can increase their breast size by eating two of these cookies a day. Each biscuit is said to contain 50mg of a breast-enhancing herb. No indication has been given as to how many days it take to eat your way to an F cup, or what size your butt will grow to as you snack your way to a bigger bosom. Obviously the very idea of breast-enhancing cookies is ridiculous.
Bonus factoid: F-Cup Cookie is the name of a famous Japanese porn star.

Domo Arigato.

I Don't Think This Means What You Think It Means

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Pittsbugh Post Gazette

So...the Pittsburgh Steelers have adopted a mascot this year to celebrate their 75th anniversary. This of course has sparked some debate--some people hate the idea. Whatev. I could give two jerks. Until you hear what they named the mascot. Then it's totally my type of deal. The Steelers organization held a "name our mascot" contest, won by Diane Roles of Valencia, Pa. And what's the mascot name you ask, dear reader? Steely McBeam.

Steely frickin' McBeam. There's a fine line between macho and gay. You dear Diane have jetted across it in Olympic style. God bless you.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Separated at Birth

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Gwyneth Paltrow, photoshopped within an inch of her life.

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A Louis Vuitton Viktor Bag.

To see more hideous unnatural tans, go here.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

The Pink Band of Scourge

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AP Wire Photo

From the BBCnews online.

Thai cops punished by Hello Kitty

Police chiefs in the Thai capital, Bangkok, have come up with a new way of punishing officers who break the rules - an eye-catching Hello Kitty armband.

The armband is large, bright pink and has a Hello Kitty motif with two hearts embroidered on it.

From today, officers who are late, park in the wrong place or commit other minor transgressions will have to wear it for several days.

The armband is designed to shame the wearer, police officials said.

"This is to help build discipline. We should not let small offences go unnoticed," Police Colonel Pongpat Chayapan told Reuters news agency.

"Guilty officers will be made to wear the armbands in the office for a few days, with instructions not to disclose their offences. Let people guess what they have done," he said.

Requiescant in Pace

According to the Washington Post, the Weekly World News is going to cease publication with the August 27th issue. Sigh. I loved WWN--it was always a reliable laugh.

Make it stop

Sweet Lord...when will this heat end. Last night it was 75 degrees, dewpoint of 74 and humidity at 96%. 96%! It felt like it was almost 100 degrees in the house.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Fashion Police

Brian sent me the link to this the other day and some of these are just too good not to pass on.

From the Smoking Gun.

Meet Amanda Lynn Bailey. The Florida woman, 41, was arrested early yesterday on a drunk driving charge, her second DUI bust in the past three months. Bailey, a dealer at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Tampa, was booked into the Hillsborough County jail at 4:41 AM. There, a sheriff's employee snapped the below mug shot of Bailey, making sure that the photo's composition included the entire unfortunate message on her t-shirt. As seen on the following 15 pages, Bailey isn't the only recent perp to pose for a mug shot wearing one of those cutesy message t-shirts. We can only assume the "I'm With Stupid" garment was being worn by their respective cronies.

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Not for long, peaches.

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Loves the Lord? Lord Calvert, maybe.

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Stella? Honey? Mr. Romero is ready for you on the set now.

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Apparently her "I'm Too Sexy" tee was dirty.

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I hope to god she was arrested for abusing her eyebrows.

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This one is my favorite.

Friday, August 3, 2007

Schadenfreude, Dude Looks Like a Lady Edition

Caught sight of this at Americablog this morning. O, those wacky Baptists.

From the WTOP website (what fabulous call letters considering the story.)

Minister Charged With Indecent Exposure

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (AP) - The minister of a Baptist church has been charged with indecent exposure and driving under the influence, and police officers say he propositioned them.

Tommy Tester, 58, of Bristol, Va., was wearing a skirt when he was arrested last week after allegedly urinating in front of children at a car wash, police said.

Police also said Tester offered to perform oral sex on officers who were sent to the scene.

Authorities identified Tester as the minister of Gospel Baptist Church in Bristol and an employee of Christian radio station WZAP-AM in Bristol.

There was no immediate response Tuesday to calls to the church and Tester's home.

WZAP issued a statement Monday asking for prayers and saying Tester had been suspended during an investigation.

"We pray this matter can be quickly resolved," WZAP owner Al Morris said in the statement.

Tester was released Friday on $1,000 bail. A hearing is scheduled for Oct. 25.

And WGAL has a little more info missing from WTOP's report. (WGAL? WTOP? It's the little things that make me happiest.)

Minister In Skirt Charged With Indecent Exposure

Police Say Man Urinated In Front Of Kids, Offered Oral Sex To Cops

A report also accuses Tester of offering police officers oral sex and says an open bottle of vodka and empty oxycodone prescription bottle was found in his car when Tester was arrested Friday.
Authorities identified Tester as the minister of Gospel Baptist Church in Bristol and an employee of Christian radio station WZAP-AM, also in Bristol. WZAP issued a statement asking for prayers and saying Tester has been suspended during an investigation.

Oh, Craigslist.

Brian found these two gems on Craigslist last night, in the erotic services section. He kindly sent them along.

Who wants to be my Financial Slave??? - w4m - 23

I am a sexy, hot, beautiful young girl who needs her bills paid.

I deserve to have men take care of me, and pay off my credit cards.... so who is ready to step up to the plate??

If you have been a LOSER and someones BITCH all your life, you will love this "job" b/c being my bitch will be that much more fun :)

email me when your'e ready to treat this princess they way she needs to be treated!!!

I'm sure she's scouring a full inbox as we speak.



Peterweat also has pictures available. The one of him in a luchador mask is stunning--but definitely NSW.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Skippy the Pissy Oompa Loompa

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Thankfully my journey to the center of bureaucracy was not especially maddening. My name got flagged again (just like 5 years ago) because someone with the same name had his license revoked. I laughed when the DMV worker said she had to call Charleston. She looked at me and I said "I'm flagged. It says my license has been revoked, right?" She said yes and asked how I knew. I explained. Went through the rigmarole of "no I don't have a middle name, just a middle initial. Here's my birth certificate." She made the call, got me cleared and came back to finish up. I asked her why, with all the data sorting options available to them, the WV DMV still insists on flagging by name only. This apparently was the wrong question, because she lost all of her former affability and said "That's the system we have. " Oh well.

I look dreadfully orange in my photo. Like an Oompa Loompa's mugshot.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Sex & Candy

A couple of choice snippets from today's Savage Love column from the Onion's AV Club.

"The percentage of teenagers having intercourse began to plateau in 2001 and has failed to budge since," wrote the Washington Post. "Experts are unsure of the reasons for the change, but [point to] the possibility that some irreducible portion of the teenage population can never be dissuaded from having sex."


I'm a 27-year-old lesbian, and my girlfriend of two years broke up with me. When I moved out, I left the sex toys I knew were hers and took the rest. The first night she was back after I left, she texted me to ask for specific toys back! I made some insensitive comments about how I took the toys because I thought I might find someone who actually wanted to have sex with me, and she got angry. I ended up giving her all the toys back because I didn't want them any more after the argument.

What should the etiquette be around sex toys when two women break up, especially when strong feelings are involved?

Babe In Toyless Land

Have two women ever broken up without strong feelings being involved?

The etiquette around the division of sex toys after a breakup is the same that applies to the division of any property post-breakup, BITL. The splitting couple has a tense discussion about divvying up their shared property; if an agreement can't be reached, they sue the shit out of each other. It would be foolish to sue an ex over a dusty collection of strap-ons and vibrators, of course, as replacing the average sex-toy collection would be less expensive than a lawsuit. But exes have taken each other to court over dumber shit—custody of dogs, cats, kids, etc.

The AV Club also has an interview with the inimitable Mink Stole.

A friend of my mother's gave me more than 75 1.5 oz. boxes of Jelly Belly Sours. That's almost 9 lbs of jelly beans! What the hell? My pancreas is shutting down preemptively.

Tomorrow I brave the WV DMV to renew my license. If this is anything like the experience I had 5 years ago, I will have one helluva rant tomorrow evening.
I discovered 4 perfectly white hairs in my beard yesterday. Not blonde, not gray...white. It's time to shave. Daily. Until I die.

In related news: 21 shopping days remain until my birthday.