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Sunday, May 27, 2012

Every Fucking Day I Fucking Pick Up The Fucking Plums
or the devil is in the discards

Okay, so years ago we transformed the crap-heap that was our backyard into a much more palatable sanctuary, complete with retaining wall, lush vegetation and amazing deck. We replaced the downed trees with two exquisite red-hued flowering plums guaranteed not to bear fruit.

Neutered nature.

Works for us. A few years passed, they filled out nicely, blooming pink in the spring and casting a lovely shade in the summer. When it came time to stem the blistering heat in the front of the house, we jumped at the chance to replicate the beauty of the back in the front yard. It worked out so well in the back, why not, right? Only these specimens didn't get the no-fruit memo. These fuckers had their own agenda.

Oh, the first two years were perfect. Standing tall, being all pretty in pink and shit. Rich red leaves glistening attractively in the sunshine, casting a long, cooling shadow over our sweaty brow...

Beauty before the Beast

Then in the third year I noticed a small round orb dangling from a lower branch that look suspiciously like ... a plum!

WTF?!?! That's not supposed to happen. This has to be an anomaly. A one-time event. These trees are fixed, for Hell's sake. The next year there were a few more, and then a few more the following year. At this point the fruits weren't the fullest, but large enough to use in tarts, so, okay, kind of a win there.

Angry driveway face spewing plums
 But this year, Holy CRAP! Maybe it was the unusually long spring or the non-existent winter or the political attacks on women's vaginas, whatever, these mother fuckers are filled top to bottom with thousands of purple bullets to unload on the walkway, the driveway, the lawn, the car, the mailman. The worst part is the trees are such overachievers, there are far too many of the fruits, making them too small to use. They're basically a seed covered in skin whose sole reason to exist is to be a fucking nuisance. A task at which they excel greatly. They are EVERYFUCKINGWHERE!!

Good God! Make it stop!
They are my nemesis.

I can't walk across the lawn without feeling the sickening splat under my feet, staining my Clarks. And Dude, you never EVER mess with a girl's shoes.

the jagoffs, lurking

Of course I can't let them lay because their smooshed hulls will A) attract bees and B) the freed seeds will strike, fulfilling it's insatiable need to propagate all over the goddamn yard. So I spent most of the morning hunched over with my derriere in the air like one of those hideous wooden garden cut-outs of a flowery fat ass bent over.

Not. Charming. At. All.
Note to the freaks who put this shit in their lawns under the false impression they're being whimsical... you're not. It's stupid and it makes me want to cover your "whimsy" in dog poop and set it ablaze on your front porch. Just a little FYI.

As I was cursing my aching hamstrings, I realized these trees are like gorgeous women. You swear you're not going to take anymore of their high-maintenance bullshit, but then Spring rolls around and they're all flirty and breathtakingly beautiful, washing away the memory of all the annoying crap they put you through last year, that is until the next time they piss you off by dropping copious amounts of shitz on your head.

Anywho, I no sooner finish filling a five gallon bucket with the devil's droppings, when that beyatch drops another load. Now she's just dicking with me.


I swear I heard her snicker.

Geo thinks my irrational obsession resolve to purge our property of these offending plums is ridiculous. He's all, "It's organic. Let it rot. It's good fertilizer." Which I know is code for "Stop freaking the hell out and get out of my face with your crazy. How about you get your ass inside and do something useful like make me some dinner, woman." And I'm all like, "Did you just pull the June Cleaver card on me?!? Tell me you did NOT just go there, because I got a bucket of GD plums you can organically shove somewhere special."

And then I set his hat on fire with my laser beam eyes superpower... causing more plums to rain down.


I think I need a vacation.


So, this is my Sisyphean task. Every fucking day I fucking pick up the fucking plums.

Screw you, Nature. You may have won this round, but screw you.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Jumping Around The Library With Ingrid Michaelson
or I have lost the ability to think of clever titles so kindly make up your own witticism here and keep your snarkiness to yourself, bitch

(that is the Fiona Apple of subtitles, yo)

one of the best photos I've ever taken
don't know how that happened

Okay, so I have been looking forward to Ingrid Michaelson's return to the Burgh ever since seeing her enormously fun free performance at the Arts Festival a several years ago. A couple week's ago I had the honor to introduce my concert buddy, Mary Ann to the talents of Ms. Michaelson. 

But first, the food. It always seems to be about the food at this age. And the drink. Let's not forget the libation. Sadly in this case the drinks were virginal, unlike the consumers.

Before the show, MA and I feasted on authentic Mexican tacos at a hip new Homestead restaurant called Smoke. The proprietors are from Austin, TX and Meadville, PA. An unlikely combo, but it works in a big way. The atmosphere is funky and the fare fantastic. And we even drank a brown rice Horchata made famous by indie rockers, Vampire Weekend. 

delicious with or without
looking psychotic in a balaclava

(P.S: Burgh Gormand is a great food blogger who is starting up his own big red taco truck soon. I can't wait to try them. Look for him in the city.)

But I digress...

One of the things I love about live shows is the performer's interaction with the audience. I love those little glimpses into the artist's personality. Without that connection, I might as well save my money and just plug in my iPod. 

There are no walls at an Ingrid Michaelson concert. She does not shut herself off from her fan base, she embraces them. She has the enviable ability to turn a nearly 900 seat venue into an intimate cabaret theater with her anecdotes. Cute and quirky, she charms everyone to their feet with the first stroke of her adorable ukulele. 

A ukulele. She plays a ukulele. You can't possibly be depressed when a ukulele's in the room. 

And her voice is absolutely angelic, crisp and clear with an incredible range to die for. She effortlessly engages with her fans throughout the evening with genuine affection. That affection runs both ways.

There was a lovely moment during her cover of Elvis' I Can't Help Falling In Love With You. The band had left her alone on stage at her piano. Half way through the first verse, the entire audience serenaded her. She was visibly touched and got a little verklempt even, stopping several times during the intro of the next number to say how gorgeous the moment was.

She's delightfully witty as well. She tells great stories. A ginormous moth had landed on the guitarist during a number, subsequently chasing Ingrid along the front of the stage. The men folk slapped Mothra to the floor, prompting Ingrid to name it Tristan and compose a song in it's honor, imagining a little montage of she and Tristan holding hands at the beach, taking buggy ride, feeding each other strawberries and so forth. It was hilarious.

I didn't tape that, but did capture her adventure on a Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade float.

Bottom line is, unless you're made of stone, it is impossible not to have a blast and be uplifted after one of her shows. She's witty, talented, smart, charming and has a nice rack for guys.

What? She does! Gotta give the girl her props.

The evening ended too quickly with the entire band surrounding her and her uke, taking turns with the lyrics to her ridiculously catchy You and I while the house joined in the sing along in classic Ingrid style.

It's a rare experience that keeps you happy and humming songs for days afterward. Thanks to Ingrid and her effervescent life force for a joyous night. Come back any time. We'll definitely take you the way you are.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Where's A Penis When You Need One
or this is not what you think, Internet pervs who are googling porn and other random salacious shit

Okay, so the last couple... several... six days I've been dealing with (read: ignoring) the all-too-familiar symptoms of the plague in my peepee hole. You ladies know the ones: the annoying sense of having to tinkle an extra 100 times, not just the normal 28 times a day, followed by the white-hot poker burning your weewee, and urine as cloudy and thick as a finely poured Boddintons.

UTI country, BABY! Yeeee Haaaa!!

In a misguided attempt to delay the obvious trek to the clinic, I tried the holistic cranberry juice approach. Nature's Drano. Not so much this time.

Note 1: do you know how hard it is to find plain cranberry juice in vending machines? There are none. Zip. Zilch. Nada. Seriously. They're all blended with apple, raspberry, apple raspberry and the dreaded grape. I know what you're thinking. I could have just dragged my lazy, fat ass to the grocery store and BOUGHT a bottle of cranberry juice, but that's just crazy talk. I would have to actually GO TO THE GROCERY STORE and I'm kinda morally opposed to markets right now, which is code for I-just-can't-bear-to-buy-food-so-why-can't-someone-just-do-my-grocery-bidding-for-me-meanwhile-this-entire-paragraph-is-crap-and-not-at-all-worth-your-time-reading-it-so-sorry-to-waste-two-minutes-of-your-life-you'll-never-get-back-and-also-I-am-on-drugs-so-please-ignore-this-incoherent-hyphenated-rant-Thank-you--The management.

Note 2: spell check insisted on changing "weewee" to "peewee". heehee

Anywho, the discomfort was too great to ignore this morning so off to the clinic we went. Me and my burning bush.


After the usual 20 questions, including the one where I got the skunk eye about STDs, because clearly the doctor had read my bio regaling the world with tales of my whoring history, I was sent to the bathroom with a plastic cup to fill.

The first hurdle was trying to get the goddamn moistened towelette open to clean the shitz off my peep. No lie, that thing was made of nylon. I struggled and struggled, stretching the bastard, working up a sweat until I noticed the fucking notch. *sigh* So this is how it's going to go.  I swear I heard snickering when I finally freed the wipe.

I don't know about you, but I have never been good at catching urine in a cup without completely dousing my hand, arm, pant leg. Standing there, debating whether or not I should take my pants off altogether, trying to calculate the feasibility of shoving my man hand AND a big-ass cup between my legs and the toilet bowl, I thought "I could sure use a penis right now."

I mean, come on. How easy do guys have it. They don't even have to pull their pants down. Just unzip, place in cup, fill cup, walk away.

Note 3 (and perhaps the most important note of this post): don't EVER shake hands with a dude after a urine sample. They totally don't wash their hands, yo. ACK! Except for Geo. He always washes. With soap. Good man.

Me? I'm playing Frogger with the stream. There is absolutely no way to control it. It has a mind of its own. It's Satan's Stream. Complete with fiery horns to scrape your sphincter.

Start going... now hold the cup... wait, is it shooting out straight? to the left? Oh shit! It's running down my backside. Why is it running down my backside?!?! GodDAMMIT! MOTHERF*CKER! It's forked to the right... Great. Now it's all over my forearm. I have suspect pee ALL OVER MY GODAMN FOREARM! And my shirt sleeve. I'm burning this shirt. There better damn well be pee in this cup or I'm going all spider monkey on someone in my pee shirt.

There was. And it was cloudier than the suicide season in Seattle.

The verdict: I have the Mother of all UTIs. I don't do this shit half-assed, yo. It's all or nothing all up in my urethra.

I was given a wide berth and an armload of drugs. One to change my urine to a startling sunset orange and enough Cipro to clear this bad boy up and make a tidy profit on the Anthrax market.

Until next time ladies, drink plenty of fluids, make sure you and your one-night stand wash your junk BEFORE getting busy and keep wiping front to back!!

The more you know...

Sunday, May 6, 2012

In Which We Lose Another Influential 80s Musician Too Soon

Sad news broke this week that Adam Yauch, founding member of the 80s premiere rap/hip hop band, The Beastie Boys, passed away at the age of 47 from complications of cancer.

Cancer sucks, y'all.

In 1986, three Jewish kids from Brooklyn (Mike D, Ad-Roc and MCA), achieved the unimaginable. They singlehandedly put rap in the mainstream. Their critically acclaimed Licensed to Ill became the first rap album to be #1 on Billboard album charts, opening the door for those who came after.

Admittedly I was not a huge fan of the band or genre, but who can deny the wit, artistry and shear fun of such tunes as She's Crafty, Brass Monkey, No Sleep til Brooklyn, Girls and the quintessential party anthem, (You Gotta) Fight For Your Right (to Party).

I have a soft spot for that last song. I will always remember our friends, Carla and Kirby's three year-old son, Atticus, sitting in the back of the car, quietly singing in his sweet, slightly southern voice "you gotta fight, for your right, to Paaaaaaaaaw-tay!" Atticus is 16 now, but hearing that unmistakable chorus takes me right back to the vision of his little toddler self.

Aside from his musical achievements, Yauch was a charitable man. A practicing Buddhist, he started the Milarepa Fund devoted to promoting Tibetan independence. He organized numerous concerts to raise monies. A genuine good guy in the prime of his life, which makes his death all the more sad.

On the day his death was announced, Coldplay paid tribute with this moving version of the Beastie Boys hit. As my twitter friend, Jeff tweeted, you aren't aloud to hate Coldplay anymore.

Cancer sucks.