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Archive for the ‘Grins’ Category

Plane Talk

Well… we’re well into July now, it’s officially summer and that can only mean one thing… well, not really… it can mean a lot of things but for a lot of us, this time of year means that it’s time to start thinking about…

VACATION!!

You know… vacation… where you leave the stress and worries of your job behind and replace them with… THE STRESS AND WORRIES OF VACATION!!

 

Vacations are one of those things that involve selective memories… They always seem like a good idea when you plan them… you look forward to it, you count down the days and each day closer to the date brings a higher level of excitement…

“OH BOY!! OH BOY!! OH BOY!!”

 

But then it all changes…

Once you’re on your way, you start to wonder what demon possessed you to do this horrible thing! What was I thinking?

And if you survive the ordeal and get back home, you swear that you will never EVER do anything like this again…

And here’s where the selective memory thing comes in…

 

By the time you get back to work, you have forgotten all about the bad stuff, and spend the next 6 lunch breaks telling every one you work with about all the fun you had, and all the adventures you had…

Yep… vacations…

 

Janet and I aren’t planning a “formal” vacation this year…

 

Formal vacations are the kind where you have a specific destination in mind and you make actual plans for getting there and what you’re going to do when you get there…

 

For instance…

 

You will arrive at the airport at exactly 10:45, get checked in and arrive at the gate in plenty of time to board. The plane departs at exactly 12:55 and you arrive at your destination at exactly 3:12… You pick up your rental car, grab your luggage and arrive at your hotel at 4:17 and begin having fun at 6:57…

 

But the reality is…

 

You get up that morning and in spite of all the planning and organizing, you can’t find your shoes, the car keys are missing and your significant other decides to unpack and repack the suitcases to make sure that you remembered everything… even though they just did the exact same thing last night…

Finally, you head out for the airport and halfway there, you realize that you forgot the suitcases… (This realization comes after you say, “I’m sure glad I put the suitcase in the trunk last night to save time…” and the other person says, “Ohhhh…. Oooops….”) they’re still sitting on the bed where your significant other put them after taking them out of the trunk, unpacking and repacking them…

Fortunately, you left early enough that you have enough time to get back home and retrieve the suitcases…

You arrive at the airport and after driving around for 20 minutes trying to find a parking place, you arrive at the ticket counter only to find out that you were supposed to check in 2 hours early… not 1 hour early…

But they manage to make everything right and so you head for the gate with your boarding pass in hand and as you round the corner you see that there are 687 people waiting at the security checkpoint… why are there so many people? Because one guy… ONE GUY… who apparently has been hiding under a rock for the last few years doesn’t understand why he can’t take his authentic, antique muzzle loading buffalo gun on the plane with him… This has caused a major ruckus and a brouhaha…

Not to mention lots of tense uniformed persons with guns…

 

Finally, we get through the security point and carrying my shoes in my hand, make a dash for the gate… the nice lady there is just closing the door but sees us running and with a grin, closes the door quicker! But I’m pretty fast for a chubby guy and manage to keep the door open with my hand and convince her to let us on (showing her my broken fingers and threatening a lawsuit)… We wend our way down the aisle, carrying our approved small backpack, having checked our luggage, only to be blocked by half of the plane who thought it was a good idea NOT to check their luggage but instead, to bring it all on the plane with them and are now attempting to cram it all into those overhead bins…

Finally, you get to your seat and get settled in… and you get to sit there while the maintenance crews are outside doing all sorts of the highly technical things to the plane… you watch as one of them opens a little panel on the wing, takes something out of there and looks at it for a moment… you’re not sure what it is but it’s shiny and metal and looks kinda important, but he shrugs and throws it into the back of his truck… then… he takes a BIG rag and stuffs it down in the hole… and closes the panel.

Wow…

Finally, the captain comes on and informs you that there will be a “slight delay while the ground crew does some minor ground checks”….

And suddenly a whole bunch more maintenance people are scurrying around the plane, opening panels and looking inside them… You notice one of them says something into a radio and everyone runs over to where he is… you realize he’s looking into that same panel that the other guy opened a little while ago and you watch as they reach in, pull out that rag, stare at it for a moment and then discuss it amongst themselves… after some discussion, the guy puts the rag BACK IN THE PANEL and closes it… and they all leave…

 

Finally, you take off and the flight is uneventful… well… except the 2 year old in the next row who spent the whole flight screaming “NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! NO!” and the guy sitting next to me that must have had dinner at Rudy’s House of Tacos because he made motorboat noises for the majority of the trip while he snoozed… That may have been why the kid was screaming “NO!”… could be…

 

We finally arrive at our destination and find out that the travel agent LIED!! The rental car counter in NOT at the airport, it’s miles and miles away from the airport so you cram yourself into a shuttle bus with a bunch of other grumpy people and finally arrive at the offsite rental car company only to find out that the 4 door mid size car I had reserved, and that I have a reservation number AND a confirmation for… isn’t there!! Nope… they gave it to someone else…

But not to worry… they have an 8 year old Ford Fiesta you can have… it’s good on gas and one of the men in the garage will help you get it started…

 

At last… we arrive at the hotel where we have a reservation AND a confirmation for 2 people for 6 nights…

However, what the hotel has is a reservation for 6 people for 2 nights… and they are booked solid… “We’re terribly sorry for the inconvenience…” they say which really means “Someone else offered us a lot of money for your room and we don’t know you and we’ll never see you again so we don’t really care…”

 

But hey!! We’re on vacation now!! No worries… no stress… no problems…

A hot shower, a couple of Mai Tai’s and a good nights sleep and tomorrow we’ll deal with the fact that we just found out that most of the amusement park is closed due to flooding and that after tomorrow, we have no place to stay…

 

Yep… we’re gonna skip the vacation this year… stay home, read books, cook on the grill and take naps…

And plan for next year’s trip!!

 

(Please note… all of the above have happened to us… fortunately, not all on the same trip… and I don’t even want to talk about the airplane that lost a cargo door on takeoff and spread everyone’s luggage down the length of the runway… that was FUN!!)

 

SAELIG!!!

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Traveling 1

Ok… so I’m driving to work this morning and one of my favorite Rolling Stones songs comes on and being in a pensive mood, I ruminated on the words to the song…

“I said, Hey! You! Get off of my cloud
Hey! You! Get off of my cloud
Hey! You! Get off of my cloud
Don’t hang around ’cause two’s a crowd
On my cloud, baby

What does that mean?? It makes absolutely no sense at all now that I’ve really listened to the words so what did I do? I decided to make it the opening for this GFTW!!

Isn’t life wonderful?

 

Ok, in response to my last GFTW where I discussed the joys and adventure of traveling by plane, many of you… OK… a few of you… well… a couple of you… OH FINE! Nobody responded!! Are you happy?

But I could sense, via the FORCE, many of you out there saying, “Well, that’s fine Bill, but what about those of that prefer to travel by car? How about some tips for us?

And being the nice guy that I am, I can help you out too…

 

So, here we go…

 

Traveling tips for drivers!!

 

Traveling by car can be an adventure as well… similar in some ways to traveling by plane except that if you have a mechanical malfunction, you won’t fall out of the sky like a stone and make a horrible crashing noise when you hit the ground… unless you’re on the PA turnpike where they have those big cliffs 3 feet from the road… jeez… who thought that up? Wouldn’t you think that the highway engineers would look at the design and say, “Hmmm… let’s make the road really curvy and windy and then… let’s put it on the side of the mountain with a huge drop off on the side… OH!! And wait!! Let’s make the speed limit 70mph AND make the hills really steep so that big trucks will ride the butt of smaller vehicles!! COOL!”

 

Sorry… I’m digressing…

 

Anyway, before you hit the road on vacation, there are some basic steps to take to insure that your car is ready to withstand the rigors that you are about to put it through…

 

First, you need to check your oil, water and transmission fluid before you take off… This is important because fluids are vital!!

Let’s start with the oil… to check the oil; you need to find the dipstick… (At this point, I would make a joke about my dorky little brother, but I won’t because it’s a cheap shot and I’m beyond that sort of thing… ya think?) and this means that you are going to have to open up the hood of the car… Yeah, yeah… I know… it’s dark and scary under there but it’s gotta be done…

Open the hood and look around in there. Of you are really looking at the engine, there will be lots of tubes and pipes and wires and other stuff in there.

Some of this stuff may be really hot so be very careful… if you’re not sure if something is hot or not, here’s a simple test…

For pipes and metal parts:

Put your finger on the object and if the skin blisters and it really REALLY hurts, it’s probably pretty hot… I would recommend avoiding it after that…

Wires: If you’re not sure about wires, have one of your doofus brother (I have several if you need one…) or your least favorite child grab the wire and if they immediately start doing the funky chicken and making a “AGHHHHHH” noise, you’re probably dealing with a high voltage wire… again, I’d avoid it…

Hoses: Make a visual inspection of all hoses… which means, stand there for several minutes staring at the hoses… not sure why, but all the books say “Make a visual inspection of the hoses” so I’m passing that along…

Finally, the engine: If nothing is smoking, burning, leaking, making squeaky noises or falling off the engine, you’re probably in good shape…

 

Ok… back to the dipstick… First, you have to find it… You could look it up in the owner’s manual, but where’s the adventure in that?

Instead, just start pulling on stuff until something comes loose… the dipstick will be a pretty long, twisted piece of metal that has gooey black stuff dripping off of it… If it doesn’t meet those criteria, you have probably pulled something vital off of the engine so put that piece back where you found it and continue the search…

Once you’ve found it, here’s the rule… if it’s the ENGINE dipstick and it has black gooey stuff dripping off, this is a good thing…

However, if it’s the TRANSMISSION dipstick, black gooey stuff dripping off is a BAD thing…

My advice to you is to do one of two things…

1.      Go to the 30 minute oil change place where they have a better idea of which dipstick is which and let them check to make sure the black gooey stuff is on the right dipstick…

2.      Don’t worry about it because if there was an issue, there’d be a light on the dashboard indicating that there was an issue, right?

 

The next thing you want to check is…


TIRES!

 

First, make sure that there are 4 of them on your car! I don’t know how many times  people have come up to me and said, “Bill … you know about cars and dipsticks and stuff and mine seems to be running strangely… can you take a look at it?”

And when I check it out, I can see immediately that the problem is a misaligned baby shoe hanging on the mirror (the toes should always be facing south…) and that the left front tire is missing! An easily missed problem…

“But wouldn’t a missing tire be obvious?” you ask…

Well, anywhere else maybe, but we have world class potholes here and sometimes I’m not sure that all my tires are there…

 

Once you’ve ascertained that you have 4 tires on the car, it’s time to see if they are properly inflated… this is an easy check.

Start the car up, put it in gear and accelerate to 25mph… if you hear any of the following….

“Wooba, wooba, wooby”

“Blooomp, blooomp, blooomp”

Or “Ka thubba, ka thubba, ka thubba” noise, then one or more than one of your tires needs air…

Do not attempt to inflate the tires yourself… you might over or under inflate the tires and trying to get it just right makes your lips sore and your lungs hurt… I recommend finding a tire inflator thingie…

 

Finally… the last thing that you need to check out is your exhaust system…

This is also easy to do… put the whole family in the car, roll up all the windows and drive down to Pontiac and back. If everyone is pretty woozy or unconscious and you made a good part of the trip back by scraping along the guardrail, then there may be a couple of holes in the exhaust system…

You can fix this by keeping the windows rolled down!! (Don’t try duct tape… it really smells BAD when it gets warm… )

 

And there you have it… your car is ready for vacation!! It will be just fine sitting there on in your driveway while you hit the highway in that luxury rental car, which is really the smart thing to do…

 

I mean, think about it… you’re relying on me for automotive advice? And doing it yourself? What are you thinking?

 

SAELIG!!!

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BACON!

Bacon Care of Business

 

Ok… let me preface this by saying this…

 

Yes… I know we work in a hospital…

And yes, I know that I work in Medical Education…

And yes, I know that we are supposed to be advocates for healthy lifestyles…

 

I know all that… but when it comes to the following… I DON’T CARE!

 

I’m here today to talk about…

 

BACON!!

 

Bacon is one of those things that people either love… or hate! Oh wait… Now that I think about it, I’ve never met ANYONE that didn’t like bacon!

Oh sure, there are those that will tell you that that they don’t eat it because it’s unhealthy, or because it’s high in cholesterol or because their religion forbids them from eating pork…

But that’s not the question… Ask them if they LIKE bacon and see what answer you get…

 

Bacon is one of the few foods that meets all 5 requirements for the “magical” food category.

 

1.     It smells good when it’s cooking… Bacon cooking is one of those aromas that will make your mouth water as soon as you smell it… and it doesn’t matter if you just ate a huge breakfast and are ready to pop, the smell of bacon cooking will cause your taste buds and your stomach to sit up and say, “GIMME SOME!! GIMME SOME!! NOW!! NOW!!”

2.     It tastes good… sounds like a no brainer but think about it… there are lots of foods that smell good when you’re cooking them but taste awful… I’m not gonna name names here but (liver) there are foods that tease you with the cooking smell (liver) only to gag you when you put it in your mouth…

3.     It LOOKS good… there is something about a plate of bacon sitting there that you can’t resist… if you take the most ardent health food nut… someone that would never let a Whopper pass their lips and who believes that Krispy Kreme is the food of the devil… and put a plate of fresh cooked bacon in front of them. Then just sit there… I guarantee that in less than 2 minutes you’ll hear, “Well… maybe just a little piece…” or “One little bite won’t hurt me…”

4.     It’s CRUNCHY!! Crunchy food in any form is good and bacon takes it a step further… it’s a tactile tasty treat and the crunchier, the better…

5.     And finally… and in many ways, this is the most important facet of magical foods…
Bacon goes with EVERYTHING!! EVERYTHING!!

One of my favorite Chinese restaurants serves something called “Woo Dip Har” which is grilled butterfly shrimp wrapped in… BACON! Outstanding!!

How about stuffed mushrooms wrapped in bacon? Or chicken wings wrapped in bacon? Or hot dogs wrapped in bacon?

(I know… this is cruel… is your mouth watering yet?)

How about steak wrapped in bacon? You can wrap ANYTHING in bacon and it will taste good…

How about “chicken fried bacon”? You take bacon, dip it in batter and drop it in a deep fat fryer… that’s gotta be good for you, right?

Especially with a side of gravy…

Let’s not forget dessert!!

How about a….

BACON CAKE!! That’s right…

I can hear you now… Bacon cake?? EWWWWWWWWWWWWWW!!!

But wait… do you like chocolate covered pretzels? M&M’s with salted peanuts?

There ya go…

It’s that sweet/salty thing going there…

Here’s a variation… Chocolate covered bacon!

But… while watching food channel one night, I saw the ultimate…

 This is not for the faint of heart… or anyone with any sort of vegetarian leanings at all…

Nope…

This is the definition of “heart attack on a plate”… the very essence of baconess… (baconess?)…

 

Are you ready for the…

Bacon EXPLOSION!!

This is 2 pounds of bacon, 2 pounds of Italian sausage (loose, not in the casing), 1 jar of BBQ rub and 1 jar of BBQ Sauce…

You “weave” the bacon into a blanket, and then spread the sausage over it… Now, you fry up a bunch of bacon extra crispy (be sure to do some extra for nibbling… it is physically and mentally impossible to work with cooked bacon and NOT nibble some… can’t be done…) and break that bacon up over the sausage… now, roll the sausage up sealing the cooked bacon inside, then roll the whole thing up in the bacon weave… you should have a big roll of bacon covered pork goodness ready for the grill… then you cook it in a smoker for 2-3 hours and you are good to go! (probably to the cardiac unit but hey…)

Here’s a link to show you how this works…

 

http://www.bbqaddicts.com/blog/recipes/bacon-explosion/

 

And now… having written all this, I’m starving… I have some peanut butter in the cabinet, some cinnamon raisin bread and some bacon… Gonna toast that bread, spread the peanut butter over it and cover it with bacon…

MMMMMMMMMM…..

 

Oh… by the way… for those of you that want it… here’s the recipe for the bacon cake…

 

A Simple Chocolate Bacon Cake

3 oz semisweet (or bittersweet) chocolate, chopped, 1 cup hot black coffee
2 cups all-purpose flour (or pastry flour), 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda, 1 tsp baking powder,1 tsp salt
3 large eggs, 2 cups sugar, 1 cup plain yogurt or buttermilk
1/2 cup vegetable oil,1 tsp vanilla extract

1 pound of bacon, fried extra crispy

1. Preheat oven to 350° F.

2. Combine hot coffee and chocolate pieces in a bowl. Let stand 5 minutes before whisking smooth.
3. Butter and flour the bottom of a 9- x 13-inch cake pan. (Or butter the bottom of the pan and lay in a piece of parchment.)
4. In a separate bowl, blend together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
5. In another bowl, beat the eggs and sugar until slightly thickened and pale, about 3 minutes. Gradually add yogurt (or buttermilk), vegetable oil, vanilla and coffee-chocolate mixture to eggs. Stir to combine well.
6. Add the dry ingredients into the moist ingredients and continue to beat until just combined.
7. Pour cake batter into the prepared pan and bake about 40-45 minutes (or until the cake springs back lightly when touched and a tester inserted in center comes out clean).
8. Place cake pan on a rack and cool completely in the pan. To remove, run a knife around edge of the pan and invert cake onto a rack. (May be wrapped tightly and kept at room temperature for up to 2 days or frozen for 3 weeks.)

Browned Butter Icing (in a Pretty Piggy Pink to pay homage to the bacon)
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
Red food color (optional)

Melt butter in a medium saucepan over low heat. Cook 6 to 8 minutes, or until butter is lightly browned. Whisk in confectioners’ sugar until smooth. Stir in 2-3 (or more) drops red food color to achieve your own perfect piggy pink.

Ice the cake and then… crumble the cooked bacon on top of the icing…

 

Or… you can just go to Meijer’s, buy a frosted chocolate cake and crumble bacon on it… your call!!

 

SAELIG!!!

 

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Grow Out of It??

 

So, there I was, working at a seminar when a friend who shall remain unnamed… (No, I’m not telling you who it was… Alice made me promise not to tell anyone that it was her…) asked me a question…

 

“You’re a guy” she said, (and I was glad there wasn’t any confusion on her part!) “And I need to ask you something… I have two boys and the other night we were sitting at dinner when one turned to the other and said, “Guess what I did? I farted in (name withheld but it was Alice’s daughter…) lunchbox and closed the lid!” At this point Alice… oh… sorry… the anonymous person made a face…

“I sort of expected the other son to look at him and say “Ewww… that’s gross… “or something along those lines but instead he looked at his brother and said, “Oh… I already did that…”

I spit out my drink and looked at them…  Is that normal?? Do I need to worry about these boys?”

 

Well… being a guy, I have to tell you… this is perfectly normal… Boys and farts go together, and there is a certain amount of pride that goes with the ability and “craftsmanship”…

 

Having come from a family that was lousy with boys, I sort of grew up in this “atmosphere”… and yes, you need to have some pity on my mother, because with 6 sons AND my father, she was surrounded by juvenile behavior of a testosteronic (yep… I made that word up… pretty cool, huh?) nature…

 

And then Alice… oh… sorry again… the anonymous person asked me… “Do boys ever grow out of that “farts are funny” phase?”

Hmmm… well Alice… (Ooooh… sorry… I did it again…) I believe that there is one recorded case in history of testosteronic outgrowingness…. But only one… He went on to become that person that composes the music you hear on the overhead in Wal-Mart…

 

And here’s a couple of case histories…

 

When my son was about two years old, without any prompting from me, he started experimenting with the “armpit fart”… My ex-wife was not amused and asked me to “take care of it…” So I did!!

I sat him down and I showed him the proper way to cup the hand in the armpit and how to apply the proper pressure on the downward motion of the arm and the resulting noise reduced both of us to helpless gales of laughter… (both of us being my son, and me… my ex-wife was still not amused… which might be why she’s my “ex” )

 

When my brother was little (about 3 years old) every time he would let one go, my Dad would look over and say, “That’s my boy!!”

And of course, that would inspire all of us (the other 5 boys) to seek Dad’s approval… eventually my mother would leave the room… not sure if it was the noise, the laughter, the crassness of it all or… perhaps it was the “atmosphere”…

 

A couple of years ago, I was at Best Buy looking at wireless routers… Janet and I had just gone out to lunch at… yep… Chi-Chi’s… and I was in some minor distress… There were some pressure issues and I was doing my best to maintain control with short bursts but I knew that something big was brewing…

Anyway, a salesperson ( a young lady) was showing a laptop to a young couple and as I passed them in the aisle, I “crop dusted”… I couldn’t help it… it was either that, or explode… No noise, just a gradual release of pressure as I walked down the aisle…

A moment or two later, the saleslady was still waiting for the laptop to boot and started sniffing… “Do you smell that?” she said to one of the other blue shirted employees… “I think the power supply is going on this laptop…” He leaned over and started sniffing too and said, “Nope… I think it’s just because it’s new… they all smell like that…”

I lost it… I have never laughed so hard in my life…

 

And finally…

 

When I was a kid, I shared a bedroom with 3 other brothers… There was a rule in our house that on Saturday morning, immediately after breakfast, we had to clean up our room before we could go out and play…

Well, when you get 4 kids, the oldest one being 12 years old, in a room together, frivolity and hilarity ensue…

We started cleaning the room but soon it developed into a game of “war”… rather than use toy guns, we used our “hands in the armpits weapons” and with pointed fingers, began shooting each other…

“Brrrrraaaaaap… GOT YOU WITH MY COLT 45”

“Did not!! Brrrrraaaaappppp” I GOT YOU!!! WITH MY TOMMY GUN!!” (This was my brother Tommy… )

“Did NOT!! YOU MISSED!! Brap Brap Brap Brap!! GOT YOU WITH MY BURP GUN!! “

 

This went on for several minutes… Yelling, noises, laughing and general boyness…

 

All of a sudden, the door flew open… my Dad was standing there with that “What is all this noise when you’re supposed to be cleaning your room?” face on…

He stood there for a moment, and then slowly turned around…

And proceeded to let one of the longest, loudest and most disgusting ones I have EVER heard rip… After several seconds of this, he finally stopped, turned around in the doorway, and said, “There… Nuked… all of you… Got you ALL!! Clean your room!!” and closed the door…

After a few minutes of gagging and retching, we cleaned the room… And once again, we were in awe of the old man…

 

And so Alice… (jeez… I’m sorry… ) in response to your question of “Do boys ever outgrown thinking farts are funny?


No… they don’t… Not ever…

 

Here… pull my finger…

 

SAELIG!!

 

 

 

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Presidential Cupcakes!!

Presidential Cupcakes!!

 

 

Ok… I’m officially tired of the presidential race… it’s been going on for so long now that I really can’t keep track anymore of who stands for what, and what wonderful things they’re going to do for me if they get elected…

But the one thing that always makes me curious is…

Why on earth would you want to be President in the first place??

I mean, think about it…

It’s one of those jobs where, no matter what you do or how well you do it, somebody somewhere is going to be upset with you…

No… wait… I take that back… you don’t upset “someone”… you upset a WHOLE LOT of someones…

This is a job where you can actually irritate entire segments of the population with a simple statement and no amount of backpedaling will make it all better…

For instance… if I was running for President, and someone is interviewing me and says, “What are some of your favorite foods?”

I would pause, reflect presidentially and then say, “You know… I really enjoy Hostess Orange Cupcakes…”

Ok… here’s what happens…

First the “Healthy Eating” citizens would be on me because I’m “encouraging the young people of America to eat snack foods loaded with sugar, trans fats and artificial colors and flavoring and has enough calories to feed a small village for a week…” and do we want someone that irresponsible to lead our nation?

Then, the “Little Debbie” company would file a complaint indicating that the candidate is showing favoritism by naming Hostess as a favorite and demanding that the candidate give an equal endorsement to Little Debbie Orange Cupcakes…. (Tasty, but not as good as the Hostess…)

Then some psychologist would go on Oprah and indicate that the candidates preference for Orange Cupcakes indicates a deep seated resistance to facing up to the adult issues in his life and instead prefers to spend his time in a self induced childhood state filled with colorful foods and fantasy snacks… and if elected, would probably make the Orange Cupcake a mandatory food for all citizens… ” (not a bad idea, actually…)

And backpedaling at this point wouldn’t do you any good either… If I came out and said, “My statement about the Hostess Orange Cupcakes would merely a response to a question and not a statement of policy… I also enjoy Fig Newtons, Oreos, Famous Amos Chocolate Chip Cookies and Mallomars… “

Imagine the backlash on that statement!!

And then, think about all the things that you and I take for granted , that would never happen again if you were elected President…

You could never sneak out early in the morning in your Star Wars jammies to grab the newspaper off the porch…

You’d open the door and there would be an army of reporters and video cameras all waiting for you to show up in your jammies…

I think that would be the hardest part of this whole process…

Think about it… no matter what you do, no matter what you say, someone will be there to photograph it, videotape it, write about it, show it on the news, post it on YouTube, and make sure that the whole world knows about it…

Some of them will make it look like a good thing… and a lot of them would make it look like a really bad thing…

“Today, the President donated $50 to the 3 Stooges Museum to help with their annual fund drive… “

Immediately, someone in the press would say, in an editorial essay, “In an apparent insult to the comedy lovers of the nation, the President donated a measly $50 to the 3 Stooges Museum… his small, seemingly insignificant gift appears to be a way to show his disrespect for this fine organization and the good work they do… Well, nyuck, nyuck, nyuck to you too Mr. President….”

And I don’t know about you, but I would take that personally… I would have to go out there and look for the person that reported that and ask them very nicely why they said what they said about me…

I would call a press conference and once all the reporters were assembled, I would look around the room…

“Is Mr. Jones from the Daily Flatulence in the room?” I would say from the podium, looking around the room… “Mr. Jones?”

“Right here Mr. President” he would say, pleased to be singled out for the first question… and standing up.

Then I would stare at him for a second and after a few moments of silence, I would say…

“Mr. Jones, What is your problem? I’m sick and tired of your constantly criticizing me and everything I do! You want a piece of me? You want to settle this right now? You can step over here and we can have this out… you obviously have issues with the job I’m doing and think that you can do it better that I can, so we’re going to settle this once and for all… “

At this point, he’s looking around, confused…

I grin… “What? Are you chicken?”

And here’s where it’s good to be the President…

I’d look right at him and say to one of my aides, “Get the head of the IRS on the phone… I believe we need to look at Mr. Jones’ tax returns for the last… oh… let’s say, 10 years… what do you think Mr. Jones? How am I doing as President now? How’s this for fiscal responsibility… Nyuck, nyuck, nyuck…. “

Yep… it would be good to be the prez…

Because, I bet the President doesn’t have to go to Hungry Howie’s on snowy winter nights to pick up his pizza…

I bet the President doesn’t have to wait in line at Wal-Mart… and I bet he can take 20 items through the 10 items or less line…

I bet the President doesn’t have to hunt all over the living room for the remote control…

I bet the President doesn’t have to be home between 8am and 1pm to wait for Comcast to show up…

I bet the President doesn’t have to pump his own gas…

I bet the President can still get the “Old Style” Kentucky Fried Chicken…

I bet the President doesn’t have to take his shoes off at airport security…

I bet the President doesn’t have to wait 45 minutes to eat at Outback…

I bet the President gets head of the line at Disney World for all the good rides…

I bet the President doesn’t have to clean snow off his windshield…

Nope, the President has “People” to take care of those things… There are people that work in the White House whose only function is to “make the President happy” which includes those guys whose job description is “Jump in front of bullets headed for the President…”

Can you imagine having that job? And how do you put that on a resume?

But if I were President, there is one thing that I would most definitely have to do…

One day, while in transit from the White House to the Capitol… being the middle car in this whole entourage of cars… Presidential limo, Secret Service cars, police escort… I would roll that partition down and give directions to the driver…

Moments later, this entire caravan would pull in to the drive-thru at McDonald’s and when the limo got to the window, the chauffer would roll his window down and say, “I’ll have the uh… number three with a Diet Sprite” and then he would turn around, look at me, the President, and say, “How about you Sir, you want anything?”

To which I would reply… “Hmmm… do they have Hostess Orange Cupcakes?”

I bet I’d get some… ya think??

SAELIG!!

 

 

 

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Scary Foods… Ewwww….

 

Good morning!! (Unless, of course, you’re reading this in the afternoon, but since I’m writing it early on a Sunday morning, I get the “Greeting” option…)I trust that all of you, like myself, had a hearty, but nutritionally balanced breakfast containing all of the essential vitamins and minerals essential for good health maintenance and strong bones… Oh… a donut and coffee?

Yeah… me too…

But we have the chance to make all that up with lunch or dinner… right? Good intentions are always best after a good dose of junk food…

Oh, and snacks… snacks can be nutritious and healthy too, right? (Being that I work in Medical Education, I’m supposed to say stuff like that… “Nutritious Snacks”… sounds like an oxymoron to me… but it’s sort of like saying that you watch nothing but PBS and Discover channel when you watch TV… what you say, and what you do can be two different things… but I’m digressing again… I think…)

But this GFTW is not about nutrition or healthy foods or any of that stuff… nope… it’s about…

Scary Foods!

“What are scary foods?” you ask… Well, let me enlighten you…

First off, there are the obviously scary foods… like cauliflower… Did you ever take a good look at cauliflower? It looks way too much like bleached brains… I’m not eating that!

Or broccoli… Did your ever really look at broccoli?

Try it… take a good look at it sometime… They look like little baby mutant cabbages… it smells funny, it looks funny and how can something that ugly be good for you? Ugly foods NEVER taste good… Look at turnips!

But there are other foods that are really scary too… Things that people make on purpose!

I mean, there are certain things that go together… stuff that you can mix up and serve and it’s OK… you know… things like mashed potatoes and gravy… peanut butter and jelly… chips and dip…. That kind of stuff… those are good combinations…

But then, there are those things that you have to be really careful about… Combinations that are not so good… and downright scary….

Like what?

Well… anything that has the word “Medley” in the name… Now, a medley is OK if you’re talking about the Righteous Brothers… (Get it? Unchained Medley? Melody? “Oh my love, my darling… I’ve hungered for your touch…” See? Hungered? Food connection? Ok… that was a reach… never mind… ) or a classic rock station (It’s time for a medley of Bob Seger hits… ) But medley never works for food…

When you see the word “medley” in connection with food, it really means that someone has mixed foods together that should never be mixed together… Otherwise, they’d be more honest with the name… you wouldn’t have to put that “medley” thing in there…

“Chicken Noodle Soup” for instance… You know exactly what’s in there… Chicken, noodles and soup! They don’t call it “Poultry Pasta Medley”…

But when you see something listed as “Ocean Garden Farm Medley”, be afraid… be very afraid… Because this is probably an eel zucchini seaweed cottage cheese casserole… is this something you want to try? I think not…

Or a “Spring Vegetable Medley”… this is usually a bunch of leftover vegetables that, by themselves, weren’t very good to begin with, (if they were any good, there wouldn’t be any leftovers!) but someone thinks that by mixing up cauliflower, zucchini, green beans and cooked carrots (carrots are one of those veggies that are pretty good in their natural uncooked state but cooking them seems to add a grossness and makes them inedible… same with celery… ) and calling it a “vegetable medley” will make it OK… NOT!! They even add the word “Spring” in there to give it a positive connotation but they’re not fooling me!

Another scary food is anything with the world “Surprise” in the title…

“Eggplant Surprise” indicates that someone, somewhere decided that eggplant by itself wasn’t gross enough, I mean, think about it… Egg? And Plant? That can’t be good… and it’s purple and ugly… the same thing applies to “Squash”… anything with the name “Squash” can’t be good and it’s UGLY too!! But I’m digressing again… where were we?

Oh yeah, “Eggplant Surprise”! Someone had to decide that eggplant by itself wasn’t gross enough and so they decided to add some sort of sauce and other vegetables to it and here’s what happens…

You put it in your mouth, chew a couple of times and then look frantically around for a napkin that you can spit it into…(Don’t try giving it to the dog… the dog won’t eat it either… trust me on this one…. And if it does, you’ll regret it later on… again, trust me on this one…)

The “surprise” part is that A) someone actually thought of making this dish, and B) you actually put it into your mouth thinking that it MIGHT be good… Nope, it’s no surprise that any “surprise” dish is anything but scary… and nasty…

I think that maybe the “surprise” part may also be what happens if you actually manage to eat this dish… your digestive system, wondering what this stuff is, begins to rebel and small children and dogs are scared at the bodily noise produced… that’s a surprise!!

But, by far, the scariest food that there is, is anything… and I do mean ANYTHING… with the word “Creamed” in the title.

Now, you have to wonder why anyone would want to cream anything in the first place.

Creamed corn… corn is pretty good all by itself… it’s tasty, it’s pleasing in appearance and it’s easy to prepare… So, why on earth would you want to cream it? Take a good look at creamed corn sometime… would anyone in their right mind, eat that? Ewwwwwwwwwwww!!!

And creamed spinach? What is up with that? Its horrible looking, its horrible smelling and it looks gross! It looks like… well… if you’ve ever had kids, and remember back to the first few months of their baby days when bodily functions were horribly awry, you know what I’m talking about…

And who invented creamed spinach? And why? Is this something that someone did on purpose? Did they take some spinach, then cream it, then put it on a plate and say, “Oh my… that’s attractive… I think I’ll taste it!”

If I had done something like that during culinary experimentation, my first reaction would have been to cover it up quickly, wonder what on earth I had done and then throw it out before anyone else saw it…

But eat it? I don’t think so… serve it to someone else? I don’t think so… share the recipe? Absolutely not!!

And what’s really scary? There are foods out there right now that people are experimenting with… somebody; somewhere is working on “rutabaga surprise” and “creamed salmon with cabbage medley… and when they get done with it, they will foist it off on some unsuspecting family member or friend who will have to be polite and pretend to like it, which will only encourage this person to make that again… That’s how these things get started….

So, make a stand… the next time someone attempts to serve you a “medley” or a “surprise” or anything “creamed”, look at it, make a face and in your loudest, whiniest voice, say…. “EWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW”

We thank you….

SAELIG!!

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Radon?? ‘Scuse me?

 

 

 

For those of you that were regular readers of my stuff, you know that we here work very hard to keep America informed, enlightened, and on the cutting edge… We believe in truth, justice, and the American Way… And with that in mind, we ask you a question…

What is up with all this stuff about Radon Gas??

Radon gas is an odorless, tasteless, invisible gas (and if that’s true, how did they become aware of it in the first place???) that oozes out of your basement, and rises up through the floors to your home where you are innocently raising children, watching Star Trek reruns, and playing Nintendo…

Now, I was raised in an era where we didn’t know about Radon gas… after all, it’s invisible, odorless, and tasteless, so who knew? For countless generations, we raised our children, played Nintendo (of course, in the olden days, they had to play Nintendo by candlelight since the light bulb hadn’t been invented yet…) blissfully unaware of this stuff coming up through the floorboards… So what is this stuff and where did it come from?

Well, the crack investigative team here at Grins and Grunts have done some research and we believe we have found the answer…

Way back, a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, we bought a home… it had a basement… and in the basement, there was this sheet of plywood covering that area under the basement steps. Not unusual… for a while we ignored that sheet of plywood and we didn’t bother to check it out (mainly because it was scary under there… I was afraid that “REDRUM” would be written on the wall in there or something…) but as time went on, and we accumulated “stuff”, we got the idea that this area under the steps would make a nifty “storage area” for “stuff”. So, we removed the plywood… BAD MOVE!

Over the years, the spiders had decided that since we weren’t using the space, that we wouldn’t mind if they did… And having occupied that space for all of that time, with no natural enemies in there, the spiders had evolved into unnatural sizes!! And there was a BUNCH of them…

Now, you have understand that I am one of those people that would rather not deal with spiders… ok… I’m terrified of them!! I’ll wrestle a bear, face down an IRS agent, and read the ingredients label on a Twinkies package and show no fear, but let a spider be in the same room, and I lose it big time…

And when we pulled this sheet of plywood down, we had SPIDERS!! Some of them were the size of small children and they had an attitude… See, they’d been living there in harmony and in the dark for generations and suddenly, there we were. They had squatter’s rights, and there was no way they were going to leave this area without a fight…

Now, my preference was to apologize, put the plywood back up and let bygones be bygones but my wife took this as a challenge and proceeded to initiate the

“Great Spider War”…

It took several weeks, a couple of cases of “Raid” but she succeeded in cleaning the enemy out of their stronghold..

The problem with “Raid” is that it doesn’t really kill the spiders… It just gets them really upset, and forces them to move to other areas of the house where the “Raid” isn’t… Like the computer room, the living room, the kitchen, the bedroom… and any other place where they can pop out unexpectedly and scare the bejeezus out of me… Imagine, if you will, being in the bathroom minding your own business, reading “Reader’s Digest, when you suddenly see a movement out of the corner of your eye… AUGGGHHHHHHH!! I said, which caused my wife to giggle, and start singing “Macho Macho Man” as she flattened the spider with her slipper… Jeez…

We have talked with other people who have basements and it appears that spiders are also a part of their décor as well, and for the most part, these spiders stay hidden.. However…

If you watch the Animal Channel, or saw “Starship Troopers”, then you know that bugs are a lot more intelligent that we once thought, in fact, I believe that they are VERY intelligent and only act stupid so that we won’t suspect them… “Suspect them of what?” you ask, “And what does this have to do with Radon gas?” Good question…

It is my theory that little spider scientists (they’re the spiders with the lab coats and pocket protectors!) have been working on an insidious plan to get the humans out of their basements, once and for all… in fact, they aren’t settling for just the basement… they want the WHOLE HOUSE!!

They have been working in their little spider labs, deep in the basements of America (come on, admit it… there are some dark, scary parts of your basement that you have NEVER looked in, and are kind of afraid to go in, yes?) perfecting a colorless, odorless, invisible gas and they have finally perfected the formula… and over the last few years, they have been releasing this gas into our homes on unsuspecting humans…

But we here at Grins and Grunts have uncovered this devious plot and even if you don’t believe that the spiders are responsible, the radon threat is real and we are taking action, thus foiling their devilish scheme…

However, information leaked to us by a spider informant (Let’s just call him “Deep Thorax”) has indicated that the spiders are not finished with us… they are working another odorless, tasteless, invisible gas that subliminally drives humans to seek out and consume mass quantities of Ben and Jerry’s “Chunky Munky” ice cream, washing it down with copious amounts of regular Dr Pepper, causing us to gain weight, big time… Realizing that we are gaining weight, we start exercising, usually in our basements, on treadmills, exercycles, NordicTrac’s and other implements of torture to lose the weight… this causes us to breathe hard and give off large amounts of CO2, which over a period of time will begin to destroy the ozone layer… Trust me on this… You wait and see if you don’t start seeing articles talking about the “unexplained rise in CO2 levels around the world” and how the scientist are baffled… But we know, don’t we… we can hear the spiders giggling in their little underground fortresses…

So, do your part… breathe normally, don’t exercise and keep a can of Raid handy…

It’s your duty…

Keep a grin on, and lighten up a little each day… it’s a good thing!!

SAELIG!!

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