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Found Groovy New Coffee Chain


It's called Starbucks Coffee. There's easily half a dozen of these joints here in Seattle. I sniffed this one out while strolling through downtown. The coffee's pretty good -- maybe not as good as Peet's, or Quartermaine, but if they throw in a few extra beans for their basic cup of coffee I think they could become major players.


The Washington Mutual Tower. Paper today said 3,000 of these folks will be getting pink slips.


This is the great bookstore of Seattle. There's a display of Obama books in the front window. It is possible they have switched to an all-Obama-book inventory. Remind me to open a store called Obamabooks.


Need to get me one of these for the backyard.


If a bay falls into a gulf and there's no one around to hear it, does it make a sound?


These vegetables at the Pike Place Market are not for sale -- they're just for tourists to photograph.

By Joel Achenbach  |  November 19, 2008; 8:40 PM ET
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Next: Seattle On Foot


Wait a minute. Don't go away. I'll be right back. Just gotta go, you know, tell the gang.

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 19, 2008 9:17 PM | Report abuse

Can you smell Tacoma from there?

Posted by: -jack- | November 19, 2008 9:19 PM | Report abuse

You were in Elliott Bay Book Store? That's the only book store in the country that carries my (only, so far) book! The owner is a friend of mine. And I wrote the introduction for another book he/they published!! (It's not only a book store, it's also a publishing company.) You coulda got both my books there!

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 19, 2008 9:23 PM | Report abuse

Does Tacoma smell? I don't think it did the last time I was there, but that was 21 years ago.

Posted by: slyness | November 19, 2008 9:24 PM | Report abuse

I see the sign in Pike Place market for Elephant Garlic, and I hope it's not similar to how they make Civet coffee.

Certainly for those who would have to 'harvest' it after Becoming Elephant Garlic, in that sense (hopefully, not one of smell).

Shockingly, you can't buy Civet coffee in Starbucks, though.


Posted by: -bc- | November 19, 2008 9:29 PM | Report abuse

Nice pictures, not sure about that coffee place though looks pretty swanky to become a big hit - fancy expensive coffees popular?

OK now I am craving a Venti, Non Fat, No sugar Gingersnap Latte - extra hot - no whip.

Saw this story - please tell me Bush won't get this through.

Posted by: dmd2 | November 19, 2008 9:30 PM | Report abuse

Sadly, I know one of the individuals who will probably be getting pink slipped at WaMu.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 19, 2008 9:51 PM | Report abuse

Does it make a "sound"... Ooh, that one's gonna hurt.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 19, 2008 9:52 PM | Report abuse

Joel's being a tourist in Seattle - kewl. Nice pics.

Tacoma doesn't smell anymore - they took the paper processing factory out years ago (I think that's where the "aroma of Tacoma" emanated from).

I don't get down to the Elliott Bay bookstore very often. It has those old floors that flex when you walk on them. It is a good store.

Posted by: seasea | November 19, 2008 9:55 PM | Report abuse

RD, me too - I know several people - and I almost jumped ship a few years ago to go there.

I hate to admit this, but I didn't get the "sound" joke - sheesh.

Posted by: seasea | November 19, 2008 9:58 PM | Report abuse

Puget sound, seasea.

I overlooked that joke myself until RD pointed it out.

Bay also can refer to a tree, so it ties back to the original "if a tree falls in a forest..." line.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 19, 2008 10:23 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, seasea. I always wondered why Zappa penned the line "...a garlic aroma that could level Tacoma..."..I used to drive through this place called Heath Springs, IIRC, between Lancaster and Gettysburg. Whatever the town was named, it was set in the bottom of this hollow, with a paper mill on the river that bisected the town. When you crested the hill on the edge of town and settled into the valley, the odour was unbelievable. To this day I marvel at the residents' ability to put up with it.

Posted by: -jack- | November 19, 2008 10:50 PM | Report abuse

Spring Grove, not Heath Springs. The latter is in our neck of the woods. Regardless, there was a paper mill and it reeked.

Posted by: -jack- | November 19, 2008 10:58 PM | Report abuse

Why is there such an awful odor when paper is being made? Rivals a slaughterhouse. Being a Navy family, we lived by both. (Not at once, thank goodness!)

I think someone explained the paper aroma to me once, but I promptly forgot it --

Posted by: nellie4 | November 19, 2008 11:47 PM | Report abuse

Ooh! Ooh! I know the answer to nellie's question. Pick me, nellie, pick me!!! *Madly waving hand like the nerdy kid who *always* waves, whenever Teacher calls for a response.*

Posted by: Yoki | November 20, 2008 12:03 AM | Report abuse

Or you could do an Arnold Horshack from the welcome back kotter series......ok Yoki we are all ears....

Posted by: greenwithenvy | November 20, 2008 12:18 AM | Report abuse

Tell us, Yoki. I live near a paper mill and toured it, and I'm still not sure, other than the wood really gets pulped and cooked and such.

The worst of it, I think, is that it changes. Sometimes it smells like a warm corn-fed fart that you can't get out of your throat and nose.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 20, 2008 12:18 AM | Report abuse

I hit many of those same spots in 2004. So far Joel's pictures look better than my do. Here are my versions:

Starbucks (the original)

Elliott Bay Book Co.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 20, 2008 12:29 AM | Report abuse

Part 2 of pictures to avoid the link limit:

I hit many of those same spots in 2004. So far Joel's pictures look better than my do. Here are my versions:

Pioneer Square Totem Pole

Seattle Waterfront

Pikes Place Fish Market

And I got pictures ready for when Joel makes it to the Space Needle and the Experience Music Project.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 20, 2008 12:31 AM | Report abuse

I took a tour of a paper mill in elementary school environmental science. They explained it as being from the acids used in the pulping process. Jacksonville used to be intolerable, but I think all the paper mills are now gone.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 20, 2008 12:33 AM | Report abuse

Nice pictures, Joel. The produce at the Pike Place Market look really nice. The Elephant Garlic seems awfully expensive, though. They are probably organic. USD4.95 = BND7.60. Our garlic is less than BND2 per kg. Our weather is not suitable to grow garlic, so all our garlic comes from China. A lot of our vegs and herbs come from China. Since one third of their waterways are polluted, eating the vegs and herbs is like playing with Russian roulette. I avoid playing Russian roulette as much as possible but when it comes to garlic there’s no choice because the country doesn’t import them from anywhere else.

Posted by: rainforest1 | November 20, 2008 1:07 AM | Report abuse

Maybe Joel's here for this story about chocolate:
Probably not.

Posted by: seasea | November 20, 2008 1:32 AM | Report abuse

The National Book Awards are in:

The award for fiction went to Shadow Country by Peter Matthiessen. kbertocci and I attended his talk at the Miami Book Fair. He wrote my favorite non-fiction book, The Snow Leopard. I had packed my 20-year-old beat up copy - but also picked up a new copy at the fair, and the new book in hardback to get autographed. I was hoping to get all 3 books signed, but while we were standing in line, we were told that he could not stay long because he had to catch a flight to New York - something to do with the book awards - and they asked that we only get one book signed. So I got the new copy of The Snow Leopard signed - quite a dilemma, let me assure you. It was quite a thrill for me to be able to thank him for the book. kb took a good picture of him.

Posted by: seasea | November 20, 2008 2:06 AM | Report abuse

bc, I kinda thought you'd like being an Idea Otter... *L*

For my one visit to Seattle, I saw no sound nor heard no baying. But there was an awful lotta water around. :-)

*blaming-my-uncommonly-curt-comments-on-caffeine's-convoluted-caravan-to-my-cerebellum Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 20, 2008 5:01 AM | Report abuse

Elephant garlic does smell like a paper mill. It's the sulfur.

I never cooked an elephant, so I never used elephant garlic.

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 20, 2008 5:16 AM | Report abuse

Rejoining the Atlantic Coast Dawn Patrol is rough. Who is hoarding the hand warmers?

Posted by: yellojkt | November 20, 2008 5:56 AM | Report abuse

'Morning, Boodle. Yello, the handwarmers are in the shop steward's office right next to the main hangar, in the locker by the door, top shelf. Help yourself. Unless Yoki shows up, we're back to gruel and hardtack for breakfast. At least there's coffee. Briefing in 15 minutes.

Still waiting for Yoki's explanation of why papermills stink so much. Being mostly a city boy/suburban kid, I don't follow a lot of the botanical discussions, and don't know what elephant garlic is (or smells like).

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 20, 2008 6:12 AM | Report abuse

'morning all. I have a couple of cool memories of Seattle. If I have the time (doubtful) I'll try a summary.
Most paper mills have shifted to thermo-mechanical processes, the stink has disappeared except for the very few plants still using the chemical pulping method. There is such a plant about 25 miles east of here, they make some expensive special grade of pulp that is used to make some specialty papers. On some day we smell the smell of Thurso (the birthplace of my hockey hero Guy Lafleur).
I suspect the digestion of wood fibers by the sulfuric acid creates some fine sulfurous products (i.e. thiols, remember our skunk discussion?) that gives chemical paper mills their fine aroma. It also produces this fine liquid as a residue; black liquor. Hummmmm.
Trois-Rivières had 3 giant paper mills, all chemical process in the 60s, there was this permanent dome of smell around the town. Back in the days black liquor was dumped straight in the drink by big diffusers. The St-Lawrence river was a dump.

Very clear and fine day today. Crisp grass and no smell of Thurso.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 20, 2008 6:38 AM | Report abuse

Seasea, you rock--if it weren't for you I would have missed Matthiessen altogether. In honor of his winning the National Book Award, I have gone back and corrected the spelling of his name throughout my blog entry.

Thanks for that link to the story about the awards--I have to go to work now but will come back and read it once I get settled at my desk.

Posted by: kbertocci | November 20, 2008 6:48 AM | Report abuse

Trois-Rivières. There is a place I haven't heard of in quite a long time. My wife spent a summer there taking a French immersion class. Since everything had to be in French, she drank a lot of vodka and orange juice since that was well within her vocabulary.

I don't recall her complaining of the smell.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 20, 2008 6:50 AM | Report abuse

Good morning all, a postcard morning here this morning a couple of inches of fluffy snow that is clinging to every branch (and remaining leaves) on the trees.

Walked the dog in the falling snow, there wasn't any wind and the temperaures were just cold enough to snow - it was very quiet and peaceful.

I recall going through Cornwall on a family vacation and being struck by an awful smell (paper mill). It says a lot that I remember it as I lived across the harbour from two steel mills which back in the day when you were at the summit of the bridge spanning the harbour you would be hit but just a horrible aroma.

Off to learn this evening how to green our cities.

Have a great day all.

Posted by: dmd2 | November 20, 2008 6:57 AM | Report abuse

joel makes a sound crack
critics' baying rings hollow
channel inner imps!
why walk the strait and narrow?
there's no gulf twixt pun and fun

Posted by: Achaiku | November 20, 2008 7:07 AM | Report abuse

All three converted to the thermo-mechanical pulping at one point yello. Then they closed in the 90s. I think there is only one in activity now. Ditto for Cornwall.
Has your wife been to the big Orange Julep?

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 20, 2008 7:13 AM | Report abuse

I remember stopping overnight in Brunswick, Ga, on the way to Florida one year back when I was a kid. It smelled so bad from the paper mills there that I threw up every time we went outside.

If I recall, we didn't stop there on the way back.

Posted by: -TBG- | November 20, 2008 7:14 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, all.

I'm familiar with the paper mill smell. There used to be a mill south of us, and when the wind was right, you knew it was there. Haven't smelled it in ages, I'll have to check to see if it's still in operation. I think the main product was cigarette paper, so probably not.

Mudge has done the doctor thing this week, now it's my turn. I do not look forward to it, although it's just my yearly physical.


Posted by: slyness | November 20, 2008 7:23 AM | Report abuse

Morning Boodle. Sorry, I feel asleep just after waving my hand in the air, but the question has been answered better than I could have done.

And I'm shockingly late for Dawn Patrol. The gallant pilots will have to eat breakfast when they land. Kind of fun to have brought the good linens and porcelain and silver, with chafing dishes and all.

Ham steaks, scrambled eggs, biscuits, grits (grits!) and a fruit platter. English Breakfast Tea as well as coffee. That pitcher over there has a citrus/pineapple punch (and if anybody punches it up with a little vodka, no-one will object, given the hour).

Have a great day. 5 days, 11 hours and 12 minutes to deadline!

Posted by: Yoki | November 20, 2008 7:47 AM | Report abuse

*paging Michael Crichton via the closest available psychic*


Posted by: Scottynuke | November 20, 2008 7:49 AM | Report abuse

The "Aroma from Tacoma" used to come from several different sources, including the tide flats. When I visited earlier this year I found that the waterfront of Tacoma had radically changed with nary an offense whiff to be whuffed.

Seattle is a wonderful place, but good golly has it been historically subjected to the whims of boom and bust economics.

I guess I shouldn't be coy, and point out that my younger brother is probably on the chopping block at WaMu.

So Joel, if you see a blonder somewhat balder version of myself moping about, please buy him a cup of coffee. If he isn't good for it, I promise that I am.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 20, 2008 7:59 AM | Report abuse

Those are handwarmers, 'Mudge? I thought they were toaster pastries!! No wonder I've been sweating so much...

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 20, 2008 8:10 AM | Report abuse

And this would truly be a shocking turn of events for those Beantowners among us...


Posted by: Scottynuke | November 20, 2008 8:14 AM | Report abuse

Mornin' all...

I just had a good giggle from Michael Kinsley's piece over at the NYT about Obama's smoking.

As a very active smoker -- put me down for about two packs a day -- I find a smoking president quite refreshing. Throw in some menthol and a warm place to enjoy such contraband and I'll take a bullet for the man.

I know that this blog is not smoker-sympathetic, and that's okay. I do not begrudge a single whiff of bus exhaust, dog poop, smelly armpits, cologne, perfume or any other pollutant to anyone here who jogs or bikes or is capable of walking up stairs without coughing up a lung. More power to ya, I say.

I just think it's way cool that our president elect enjoys his smokes. I'm thinking he needs to be more public about it, though. Everybody knows that "W" is a dry drunk. Give him the chance and an excuse and a bottle of hootch and he'll be plastered in seconds. Repression and denial and Oedipus complexes are powerful things. Now Obama... give that man a Marlboro and a light and you better hope you have fresh batteries in your tape recorder because you just know he's gonna say something profound as the smoke swirls around his head.

And look like a rock star when he does it.

Posted by: martooni | November 20, 2008 8:41 AM | Report abuse

Sly, I'm off to Etowah on the weekend. I bet I have a better chance of running into you there than here. BTW they closed that cigarette paper plant a long time ago. It hurt the local economy pretty bad for a time.

Georgetown SC used to have a paper mill quite close to an ironmaking plant. The local people had a hard time figuring out which one stunk. Of course it was the paper mill; that much sulfur would ruin iron.

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 20, 2008 8:52 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, all.

Got the big Dawn Patrol engines warming up (gotta make sure that those air-cooled radials' oil temps are right in the cold weather) -- it's nice to have hot food on hand while I'm on the tarmac, thanks for that. I'm enough of a Southern boy to appreciate good grits, too.

I've often considered the idea of a homemade totem pole in the back yard as well, but was worried that if I employed my artistically gifted children to make it over the course of their teenage years, I'd end up with several decreasingly flattering caricatures of my face over time, much like Simon Kress' in George Martin's "Sandkings."


Posted by: -bc- | November 20, 2008 8:56 AM | Report abuse

I once almost became a University of Washington student. Finally saw the magnificent campus around 1999, albeit with Rainier hiding.

Seattle feels big-city in a way that Portland, Oregon does not. Could it be the result of Wagner's Ring being performed regularly? Or maybe Seattle's historic role of access point for Alaska, where things tend to be big.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | November 20, 2008 9:07 AM | Report abuse

I nominate Sandkings as the official mascot of the Boodle Professional Beach Volleyball Team.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 20, 2008 9:12 AM | Report abuse

Howdy. This is the first day that really looks like winter here. I am off to another day of conference & meetings. Really it is more fun than it sounds, the conferences have just been an excuse to get together and chat. Rooms too cold, bad coffee. Y'all have fun, y'hear?

Posted by: Ivansmom | November 20, 2008 9:15 AM | Report abuse

Good morning Boodle.
Had Boodle engine failure on takeoff.

Ha, Seattle is nice in good weather. Last time there it rained non-stop for two weeks.

Mudge--you secret author--tell us about your books.

Posted by: Braguine | November 20, 2008 9:26 AM | Report abuse

Anyone wondering why health care costs are out of whack should consider this:

"the health care industry has proven in the past to be countercyclical and recession-proof, since people always get sick."

Yeah, let 'em get sick and then charge them, instead of helping them stay well. Of course, skilled practiioners and researchers should be properly compensated, but health care should not be an "industry." *SIGH*

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 20, 2008 9:28 AM | Report abuse

Whare is my paperback copy of Murray Morgan's 1951 book "Skid Row" this morning, that same paperback that had the cover torn off because I got it for maybe a dollar decades ago when I lived in Washington state? Digging, but can't find it...

May be that with the national economy on the skids, that Joel is visiting the city that gave us the term "skid row" via the logging industry. Wiki has the explanation:

Perhaps Joel is checking how many of the big players in the area are doing economically: Starbucks,, Boeing, Microsoft, Washington Mutual. And really, do you still think that Bill Gates is acting like a big dog?...Melinda had much to do with how he now spends his days.

Posted by: laloomis | November 20, 2008 9:32 AM | Report abuse

G'morning boodle! As it happens I am in a Caribou Coffee shop just a stone's throw from our local paper mill. No smell, and hasn't had an odor as long as I can remember (back to the early '60s). Must be the processes used as the stink in Wilbrod's neck of the woods is the stuff of legend.

We certainly are becoming a cleaner nation, from an olfactory point of view. We lived in Petersburg, VA for a time in the early 70s and I went to school in Hopewell for a year. At home you had the molasses smell from the cigarette plants-not entirely unpleasant unless you were very close to the factory. Hopewell was another matter. "The Chemical Capitol of the South" was a place you smelled long before seeing the pastel plumes or flames coming out of various pipes.

I always laugh at soldiers who arrive in a new foreign city and complain of the smells. Some third world hell holes, Iraq and other combat zones aside, what they are usually smelling is just the city life they'd be accustomed to in the US if they didn't ride in a closed vehicle everywhere they went. My advice, don't breathe in deeply when standing over a sewer grate in any city.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | November 20, 2008 10:03 AM | Report abuse

I love elephant garlic baked and slathered on a fresh baugette. Its sweeter and milder, but of course, it still is not something you can eat alone.

I wonder how it would go on that breakfast biscuit?

Posted by: --dr-- | November 20, 2008 10:04 AM | Report abuse

There is still a rather distinctive dead skunk smell just south of downtown Richmond on the way to Petersburg. I caught a whiff of it just two weeks ago.

And back to Seattle coffee. On our one week vacation back in 2004 we learned to love the little drive-thru kiosks. They are literally everywhere.

We were driving from the south end of Ranier NP to the east side of Mount St. Helens (which is a lot of nothing) and there was a little town with a life-saving drive-thru kiosk.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 20, 2008 10:10 AM | Report abuse

Scotty, that's sad tidings about Out of Town News. I have good memories of that place, it's really the heart of Harvard Square. Eons ago, I spent a number of cold days across the street from the historic newstand hawking The Militant newspaper. More recently, the Car Talk website for a while had an interactive webcam aimed at the site and I used to check in every day to spend a few minutes watching the scene in Harvard Square from my desk in south Florida.

I never get to visit Boston anymore, so I guess it will just live on in my memory, forever unchanged.

Posted by: kbertocci | November 20, 2008 10:17 AM | Report abuse

kbert hawked a newspaper called "The Militant?"

*massive cognitive dissonance episode*


Posted by: Scottynuke | November 20, 2008 10:40 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, you all.

Frosty!!! Hopewell, worst smell, I remember it well. Husband's homeplace is next door in Chester, VA. Do you remember Stinking Creek? Official name maybe Falling Creek, although I may have my creeks that reek confused.

Funny about smells. Vinegar fragrance reminds me of Easter (dying eggs with color tablets).

Now, mud flats, my favorite stinky smell, low tide, soil full of living creatures. Smells like home to me.

Posted by: VintageLady | November 20, 2008 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Speaking of elephants -- well, we were, weren't we? -- in one of my trips to Sweden, maybe 8 years ago or so, in Gothenburg (Göteborg to the natives) on the west coast of Sweden, my client invited me to lunch with one of his colleagues in the company executive restaurant. This was always fun for me, and the food was "typically Swedish" in a passable sort of way (hey, the French do it best, IMHO). The proprietors always had a menu posted for the entree of the day and on that particular day the entree was ELEFANTÖRA. Now, my eyes are certainly not what they used to be, and I suspect that either they were beginning their slow trek downward at that time or that my glasses were dirty. Nevertheless, I read that as ELEFANTRÖRA instead and I started to panic a bit. You see, ELEFANTRÖRA can be translated into "scrambled elephant" and even though they are associated here with those /)(&%¤( Republicans, I absolutely *love* elephants and having seen them up close and personal-like, I wouldn't *dream* of chowing down on any of them. However, before I could stammer out a demurral over the choice of food, my client told me what the dish actually was (and in regard to the "correct" spelling). You see, "öra" in Swedish means "ear" and Elefantöra means a slab of meat in the shape of an elephant's ear. Whew! I said. When I told the guys about my misunderstanding, we all got a good laugh out of it.

Oh, dear, I seem to have taken up a lot of the boodle's time. Apologies, if appropriate. . . .or not, if also appropriate. *ahem*

Posted by: firsttimeblogger | November 20, 2008 10:55 AM | Report abuse

One of the great things about the Pacific Northwest is the ease in which certain cool-weather crops can be grown. These include such things as lettuce, rhubarb, raspberries, blueberries, leeks, garlic, and snap peas.

Not to mention, of course, the omnipotent tomato.

With proper care these plants will practically leap out of the soil. Of these, my younger brother, the master gardener, is always especially proud of his garlic. When I visited his home a few years ago he displayed garlic plants that stood over three feet high. They looked like stalks of young corn.

The only downside to gardening out there is the ever-present scourge of the ravenous slugs. Keeping them at bay is a constant struggle. My brother, being an all-natural kind of gardener, avoids chemical repellents. Instead he puts out trays of beer in which the slugs drown.

Well, at least they go happy.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 20, 2008 10:56 AM | Report abuse

I discussed the Kit with the ScienceSpouse this morning, who had not yet had the opportunity to read it herself. She was really quite confused as to why it's called Pike's Peak Market, when Pike's Peak is in Colorado. On reflection, this may have something to do with the fact that it's Pike Place Market, and I stupidly garbled the name. As I say, "may" have something to do with it. I refuse to make any further comment on the subject until I have had a chance for due reflection and analysis.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 20, 2008 10:58 AM | Report abuse

I like that elephant ear story, ftb... no apologies ever necessary from you for boodle-hogging.

My parents used to call the Whitehurst Freeway along Georgetown "the smelly way" because of the mills and/or plants there. It was a pretty horrible smell if I remember correctly. (Didn't one of the buildings even have painted on it a sign saying they were not responsible for the smell?)

Even when I was an adult, if Mom was giving me directions she'd say, "Take the smelly way..."

Posted by: -TBG- | November 20, 2008 11:00 AM | Report abuse

The neat think about Pike Place Market is that in addition to the seafood and produce, it has, like, miles of fun little shops that sell stuff made by local artisans. Perhaps because of the weather, sitting around and makin' pretty stuff is a popular past time.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 20, 2008 11:15 AM | Report abuse

VL, I always liked the smell of saltwater marshes/mudflats, too.

When I was a kid and my family would go "donnashore" to Brigantine, we'd go down the old White Horse Pike. Just before one gets to the coast, you go through a small town called Absecon. About a half mile east of twon the road went over a small rise and a slight righthand turn--and all of a sudden, there was this emmense salt marsh a couple miles wide, and on the far horizon line was Atlantic City (and at the far side the road branched off to Brigantine). And about a hundred yards before you got to that turn, you could suddenly smell the saltflats. And invariably as we got to that point, someone would say, "I smell the ocean!" And then three seconds later, there would be the flats and that vista. And they ran for miles and miles all up and down the Jersey coast-- any time there was a seaside resort out on one of the barrier islands, inshore between the resort and the mainland would always be these huge salt flats and marshes, which always smelled bad/good.

And as a kid I was always fascinated by these marshes, and thought they were neat, with all those little rivers and creeks and channels cut into them, and thought it would be fun to wade into them. Only much later did I understand how truly yucky they were, infested with snakes and eels, and overrun with mosquitoes and blueflyies and greenheads-- not a place anyone would want to be.

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 20, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Elephant ears are also a large semi-tropical plant. You'd have to ask DotC if they are edible.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 20, 2008 11:24 AM | Report abuse

We were in Seattle going to the dam and fish ladders when we saw a pick-up truck in the parking lot selling Rainier cherries. We bought a pound or two and gobbled them up. They were the best cherries I had ever eaten. Sometimes I see them in the high-end grocery stores, but they just aren't the same as the fresh off the truck variety.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 20, 2008 11:30 AM | Report abuse

I remember Rainier cherries! They were great. They were my second favorite consumable with the name "Rainier" in the name.

A handy Shibboleth to identify long term residents of the region is the phrase "Vitamin R".

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 20, 2008 11:34 AM | Report abuse

VL-There's a spot on I-64 east bound that suddenly says "home" to those of us who love the tidewater region of VA (to those who don't, I realize it's an affliction, but I gladly bear it). It's not always the same spot, and in summer it can be overcome by the exhaust fumes in stalled traffic, but usually by Cheatham Annex I can get a whiff and then it's worthy of good deep breathing. It matters not that it's more York River than ocean, it's sunburns before we knew they were lethal, running behind the mosquito truck when we thought getting hit by a car was the main danger, and only wearing shoes on Sunday all summer long. Better than new baby smell, because it takes me back to when I was new.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | November 20, 2008 11:36 AM | Report abuse

You seem a little out of the age group that would be abusing Ritalin.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 20, 2008 11:41 AM | Report abuse

OK, am at work now and am thus unable to test the advice...but why would I go into iTunes to get iPhoto properties.

Also having trouble getting that flower pic up online at the moment

Posted by: omnigood | November 20, 2008 11:42 AM | Report abuse

That was beautiful frostbitten. Isn't it amazing the way smells can stir powerful memories?

Freshly cut grass, raspberries left in the sun, musty old books, and Breck shampoo all return me, just for an instant, to moments long gone.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 20, 2008 11:45 AM | Report abuse

bc - it shows how firmly ingrained the association is that I totally forgot about that other meaning of "Vitamin R."

I will have you know that I have never abused Methylphenidate. My body is, and always has been, a sacred temple.

The "Vitamin R" to which I refer, and of which I have so many special memories, is, of course, the now defunct product known as "Rainier Beer."

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 20, 2008 11:51 AM | Report abuse

If you click on that pic you will see why I always chuckle at the stylized "R" used by the Washington Redskins.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 20, 2008 11:54 AM | Report abuse

My father told me to plant garlic on the shortest day of the year and harvest it on the longest. This has worked excellently. I grow a pound or two every few years. I tried it with onions which I had no luck with; still no luck with them. Garlic, yes. For those in zones of groundfreezing, obviously the closest time near the solstice and still be able to dig would suffice.

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 20, 2008 11:56 AM | Report abuse

Smell of vinyl = wading pools
Smell of sunscreen = the Great Southwestern Vacation, with the ScienceSpouse.
Stinky smell of sea-wrack = Woods Hole, MA.
Sun-roasted dry pine needles = different part of Woods Hole.
Smell of vinegar = happy hours in the (photographic) darkroom developing B&W prints. With pretty girls. Who were out of my league. At the Woods Hole Children's School of Science.
Dial soap = Woods Hole. No, I have no idea why.

As you can tell, I am rather fond of Woods Hole, MA, and Falmouth, as they live in my memory. Last time I was there, it was too crowded, too active, too touristy. In 1976, the world-at-large had not yet discovered that part of the Cape, except on their way to the ferry docks for the Vineyard.

Unfortunately, the only smell distinctive of my university was due to the ginkgo trees that were planted with the males and females too close together. I liked college, but there is no way to form a pleasant association with that smell.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 20, 2008 12:04 PM | Report abuse

omni... oops. I saw iTunes where you wrote iPhoto. Sorry.

Those of you to whom I may have sent a resume looking for an editing job, please ignore the above statement.


Posted by: -TBG- | November 20, 2008 12:17 PM | Report abuse

You are right about the excellent craft stores at Pike's place RDP. I bought two tees for the, then small, kids there in 1990. For the next 2-3 years they were the favourite tees of the Fungi and later of Witch no. 1. So Pike's Place reminds me of my oldest kids.

Another charming memory of Seattle is a excellent halibut steak meal I had a restaurant overlooking the Sound, I think there was a marina near by. The wine by the glass was rather expensive and they had no half bottles nor half liters (what's that asked the horrified waitress?). There were some local wines on the cheap side so I ordered a bottle of local white plonk burdened by a pretentious French Château name. The young and charming waitress promptly corrected me on the pronunciation of the French chateau in question, which quietly amused me greatly. Then she commented on the waste of good wine created by not having half bottles available for solitary diners, which also amused me enormously and not so quietly this time. Anyway I almost had to show her the key to my hotel room, located a couple of blocks away, before she let me out of the retaurant when she realized the bottle of wine was empty at the end of the meal. She was afraid I would collapse or try to drive, I don't know but her concern was charming, if a little invasive.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 20, 2008 12:25 PM | Report abuse

RD, you have no idea how distressed you have made me by mistaking me for yellojkt.

Yes, I know what 'Vitamin R' is, and perhaps a few other things that a person of stronger character and sounder judgement than I may have displayed in my youth, but I fail to see how this warrants such an insult.

I await your response, sir.

[bc, arms folded, right eyebrow arched, stands with his weight on his left leg, tapping his right foot looking none too amused, wondering who's going to register first - RD or yellojkt]


Posted by: -bc- | November 20, 2008 12:27 PM | Report abuse

*hiding the register quickly* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 20, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Howdy all
another cold and blustery day here in west by god.

Some unfortunate smells growing up,we lived near a funeral home and could tell when someone was creamated.
Also lived downwind sometimes of the Calvert distilling plant and could smell the mash from time to time.

Here in west by god,just the smell of nature is so wonderful,although I did get a whiff of bear one night while walking,which isn't so wonderful.

Posted by: greenwithenvy | November 20, 2008 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Thanks all for recounting your smell memories. (Would that be smemories?)

frosti, VL, I have also done my time in Hopewell. You could tell which way the wind was blowing by which plant you smelled. Your choice of paper, chemical, or wastewater treatment.

Posted by: Raysmom | November 20, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

I know what you mean Raysmom, I spent a couple of days in a plant located between a tannery and a rendering plant. As it was summer in Toronto the doors of all three plants were wide open. I seriously thought about burning the clothes I wore that week. Bleeecht.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 20, 2008 12:44 PM | Report abuse

My dearest bc. Let me offer the following heartfelt and, like, totally original apology:

"I offer a complete and utter retraction. The imputation was totally without basis in fact, and was in no way 'fair comment' and was motivated purely by malice and I deeply regret any distress that my comments may have caused you or your family and I hereby undertake not to repeat any such slander at any time in the future."

Gotta love the classics.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 20, 2008 12:49 PM | Report abuse

Don't call me stupid!!!

Posted by: greenwithenvy | November 20, 2008 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Plus, I get confused so easily...

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 20, 2008 12:52 PM | Report abuse

SD: There may have been a miscommunication. Let's roll the tape:

Waitress: (coyly) So, are you staying nearby?
SD: Why, yes. Yes, I am.
Waitress: Why don't you leave me your hotel key?
SD: What! I am not drunk. I only had one little bottle of wine. And I'm walking.
Waitress: Okay... forget it.
SD: That's better. Now, good night.
Waitress: Good night. Incidentally, I'm called the hostess, not the hostie. You kept calling me that all evening.


Posted by: engelmann | November 20, 2008 1:00 PM | Report abuse

That is brilliant, engelmann!

Posted by: Yoki | November 20, 2008 1:05 PM | Report abuse

omni... it's almost the same advice, though...

Open iPhoto, select Photos under Library and then click on the little "i" at the bottom of the left-hand sidebar and it will show you how large the library is.

Posted by: -TBG- | November 20, 2008 1:05 PM | Report abuse

I don't think so. She was barely old enough to serve adult beverages and I greyed early.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 20, 2008 1:05 PM | Report abuse

That's from A Fish Called Wanda, right, yello?

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 20, 2008 1:18 PM | Report abuse

It's raining cats and dogs here - good thing Joel got his touristing done yesterday - or some of it, at least.

I didn't realize elephant garlic was so exotic. I thought it was everywhere - just big, mild garlic. Rainier cherries are the best. yellojkt, I looked at your Seattle vacation pics - I can't believe you did all that in a week. You were everywhere - well, not eastern Washington, but everywhere west of the Cascades.

Rainier Beer had commercials that were so good (funny) I actually watched them. There are lots on youtube, which I've linked to before.

Posted by: seasea | November 20, 2008 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Laughing over here, RD. All's forgiven, amico.

englemann, I was thinking the same thing about SD.

If such a young lady claimed to be interested in my safe conduct back to my hotel room to the point where the key came into question, it *might* occur to me that she were looking for a reason to visit.

But then, I'm a guy and sometimes I need to be clouted solidly in the head with a 2x4 to notice such things.

For future reference, mention to said young lady what room you're in and accidentally leave the key on the table near your tip as you exit, and note when the resturant closes.

What you do beyond that is up to you.


Posted by: -bc- | November 20, 2008 1:32 PM | Report abuse

Laughing. I didn't see a thing, TBG.

Actually, the sense of smell has been said to be able to trigger memories more than any other of the five senses, more than any other thing, period. There is an old Chinese proverb (aren't there always?) that says something like "Patriotism is nother more than the memory of the smell of our mother's cooking." More smell associations:

Burning leaves: autumn, "away" high school football games (see Updike, John: "In Football Season")
Pine needles: Boy Scouts, camping out at Resica Falls (PA), earning Boy Scout Swimming merit badge in icy cold pool in mountains surrounded by pine trees.
Sea Breeze brand astringent: suntan oil circa 1950, at Brigantine, New Jersey.
Cooking bacon: nextdoor neighbor's row house, Wyoming Ave., Phila., circa 1950-52, which is somehow also strangely linked to chicken pox. Yes, the smell of bacon makes me think of chicken pox. I cannot explain it.
There is a specific smell to a charred marshmellow being roasted on a stick around a campfire. I can distinguish that one smell from every other of the millions of kinds of burnt/charred smells.
Horse poop and straw: mucking out the stable of our Morgan quarterhorse Black Beauty (original name, I know; she came with that name already attached; there was nothing anyone could do about it) circa 1956-60, Horsham, Pa, on a cold day.
White Rain hair conditioner: my ex's hair.
Banana "dope": Testor's brand sealant used to seal tissue paper covering balsa model airplanes. Highly addictive. Lost god knows how many brain cells to this wonderful stuff.
Model airplane glue (styrene): for plastic models. Ditto lost brain cells. [It's a miracle I'm not dumber than a sea slug.]
Canvas tent smell: back in the days when tents were actually made from canvas, and treated with whatever that stuff was: camping out, circa 1956-64.
The quintessential "bakery" small: Sundheimer's Bakery, in Hatboro, Pa., circa 1960.
"White Shoulders": my late mother-in-law
"Fresia": my wife
"Chanel No. 5": my mother
"Axe": my son
Some sort of lavender: my grandmother
"Old Spice": my grandfather, 1,000 times over. The man practically drank it.
"Canoe": aftershave, 1963-65, Hatboro and West Chester State College
"English Leather": West Chester State College, Sept. 15 or so, 1964 and after. Forever linked to wheat-colored jeans (washed but never ironed), white button-down shirts, no tie, brown corduroy jackets with leather elbow patches.
Aqua Velva: my father
Clubman Pinaud: every store-bought haircut I ever had, 1950 to the present. (Still like it.) It was always splashed on the back of the neck after neck was shaved with:
Burma Shave: see above. Linked to roadside signs in Berks County, Pa., and further west into RD Padouk country.
The Secaucus, N.J. Turpike smell, circa 1958-1980. Heaven knows what kind of plant that was, but if you drove up the turnpike to New York, you smelled it, and never forgot it.
Hollyberry candle smell: our house, every Christmas, 1982-present

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 20, 2008 1:51 PM | Report abuse

You had a Morgan! And you've never mentioned this in my presence until now?!

Posted by: Yoki | November 20, 2008 1:53 PM | Report abuse

Rainier cherries are surprisingly available in Florida. Must be grapefruit reciprocity.

By the way, citrus trucks are now on the roads, including grapefruit, which can't be harvested until it's sweet enough. This week's cool snap should be good for sugar content.

One of the marvels of Portland is the Japanese-sized lettuce farm adjacent to Reed College. It's watered by the spring on the Reed campus, and of course there's a produce stand. The city's main vegetable-sheds (in the sense of watershed) are Sauvie Island in the Columbia River and the Hood River district on the dry side of the Cascades, where hot sun, cool nights, and irrigation make for explosive growth.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | November 20, 2008 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Anyone remember this one

off to work

Have a great day everyone

Posted by: greenwithenvy | November 20, 2008 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Nicely done Jumper!

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 20, 2008 2:17 PM | Report abuse

My son wears Lilac Vegetal when he wants to smell like my dad (his Papou). We also keep a bottle of Papou's Vitalis in the cupboard just to catch a whif of him there, too.

My daughter insisted we give our new little niece some A&D Ointment because it smells like "the baby's room at Yia Yia's house." The baby being whichever one was in a crib at the time at my mom's house (Yia Yia).

Posted by: -TBG- | November 20, 2008 2:35 PM | Report abuse

Yup. She was kinda old, about 13 when we got her, circa 1956. Cost: $75 from a farmer who lived on Limekiln Pike in Dresher. Cost included the western saddle and other tack. My father converted one bay of our (unfinished) two-car garage to her stall. Used to ride her after school in the big open fields and meadows behind our house, then up Cedar Hill Road. At Mimi Arnold's house there was an apple orchard, and BB would stop and eat apples, and my brother and I were both two small to control her with the reins, so we'd have to climb off and physically lead her past the orchard. Then we'd have to find a fence to climb back on her, because we were too small to climb up unaided. Then. coming home across the field right before dinner, she liked to stop in the weeds, get down on her knees and then roll on her side and scratch herself--while we were still aboard. If I was alon on her, I could jump off OK, but if it was my brother who was smaller and a year younger, he had trouble getting off her in time. And he had a bad temper, so he'd come home leading BB and angry as a wet cat at her.

So yes, I know all those horse smells, how she smelled when she was lathered up, the smell of the tack and the leather, the big 55-gal. drum of her oats, the bales of straw, all that.

Our family photo album has lots of black-and-white pix of my brother, me, or both, riding her, and a few of my father riding her.

My father originally bought BB because he had once been in the U.S. Cavalry (yes!!) when he was 16, before WWII. There were several cavalry troops in Philadelphia (yes indeedy) in the 1930s, which were largely ceremonial. And he joined up to learn about horses and the cavalry, etc., and marched in parades and all that kinda stuff. I can't remember the exact title of his unit, other than his group was the "Second" something: Second City Troop? Something like that. When I was a kid, I had his original flat cavalry hat (see any John Ford/John Wayne movie) that had the brass "2" on it, and wore it while playing cowboys and indians, etc.

We had her about four years. For some reason I don't have any recollection of how we (my father) got rid of her: sold her or whatever. Funny: I remember the purchase, every detail, but not how we sold her. Remember going to the feed store every week or two to buy oats and bales of straw. Remember the farrier (horseshoe guy) coming out periodically to shoe her, filing down the hoof, and something to do with a hot iron, and that smell.

part 2 coming

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 20, 2008 2:35 PM | Report abuse

Part 2

Right after college, a couple friends of mine were horse people, and we started going to a stable over near Marleton, NJ., (near the old Woodbine Inn, omni and dbG), which rented horses. And there'd be five or six of us, and we'd ride for two or three hours down these sandy, pine-barreny trails. One time I had a horse who had a crazy streak. I was cantoring along at about half speed, and had gotten kinda lazy and complacent about the reins 9because I'd done a lot of riding when I was younger, and of course by then I "knew everything"), which the horse sensed. She suddenly dug her front legs in a dead stop and buck me ass-over-teakettle right over her head onto the trail. My friend who was right behind me said later, "My god, I thought you were dead!" Seems I'd done a 180 in the air and landed upside down on the back of my neck. It scared the crap out of him more than me, because he'd seen it, whereas the first thing I remembered was sitting on my butt in the sand. I got up without a scratch and got back on, basically too oblivious to know how close I'd come to getting seriously hurt.

Was never complacent on a horse again after that.

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 20, 2008 2:36 PM | Report abuse

God loves us so much more than we can imagine through Him that died for all, Jesus Christ.

Hello,friends. Just getting back from the Senior Thanksgiving Dinner. It was wonderful. I got a chance to see some old friends, and to meet some new people. All in all, a good day.

About the kit. I love the pictures, JA, and especially the one of the vegetables. That looks like a cool place to browse around. And on the subject of smells, a lot of years ago, Winston-Salem, a city here in NC, top manufacturer of cigarettes and beer. An awful smell. The cigarette factory alone was just awful, but throw in the beer place, and it was more than a body could take. And of all places, that is where I got really got hooked on cigarettes. I'm blaming the smell. No personal responsibility there.

Martooni, don't have a problem with new Pres. smoking, just know it's not good for his health. And even if he doesn't smoke in front of his girls, they can smell the smoke on him. He probably wouldn't want to see them light up either. My daughter complained constantly that her teachers thought she was smoking because I smoked around her, and the scent was on her. I laughed at your reference of "dry drunk". I suspect I fall into that category.

Yoki, sounds like a dynamite breakfast.

Slyness, Mudge, Scotty, hello to all.*waving*

Mudge, you are one funny man. When I read your stuff, I try not to have food or drink in my mouth because I don't want to make a mess on the computer.

It warmed up a lot here, but the weather person is saying don't get use to it. *sigh*

Posted by: cmyth4u | November 20, 2008 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Seems like everybody's getting into the "Mother of All Inaugurations" act...


Posted by: Scottynuke | November 20, 2008 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Mudge -- a Jewish horse?

Posted by: nellie4 | November 20, 2008 2:54 PM | Report abuse

The one that cantored.

Posted by: nellie4 | November 20, 2008 2:59 PM | Report abuse

No, Nellie, not a Jewish horse, and in fact I think Amish, IIRC (at least, I think the farmer we bought her from was Amish). All my family were wishy-washy undifferentiated protestants of no great conviction, and I went to a Methodist church (by force) for a few years when I was in high school (with the accompanying hatred and rebellion that can be expected any time a teenager is forced to do something he/she doesn't want to do). Hardly even knew any Jews until my sophomore year of college, when I transferred to Temple University--and then I was surrounded by them, was practically the token goy. Fell in love with a Jewish girl, who wouldn't marry me because I wasn't Jewish, so I converted in 1971 (you apprently missed the post when I described how I was "re-circumcised" a second time. Long story I won't repeat) and learned the mystical healing powers of chicken soup. (And then she still wouldn't marry me.)

So nu, not a Jewish horse.

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 20, 2008 3:07 PM | Report abuse

But yes, cantered versus cantored. The horse attended a riding yeshiva, Beth Giddyup.

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 20, 2008 3:12 PM | Report abuse

Hi Everyone! I was in L.A. for work this past week and finally got home, just in time for a big storm that's rolling in tonight. From massive So. CA firestorms to huge rainstorms. Must be me huh...

I love Seattle! Except for the year round gloom that is. Great food, nice people, good academics and REI!

Posted by: MiddleofthePacific | November 20, 2008 3:12 PM | Report abuse

You don't know the half of it because there were stops that didn't make the photo album. Here is the rough itinerary:

Fly into Seattle, go to Pikes Place, watch people throwing fish, drink some coffee, eat some ice cream.

Drive to Rainier National Park, take lots of pictures, stay at the lodge there.

Drive down to Mount St Helens, get awesomely humbled by the force of nature.
Continue on through the woods to all the waterfalls along the Oregon border, head into Portland.

Spend not nearly enough time in Powell's, head up the Olympic Peninsula along the coast road. Stay in the cabin at Sol Duc.

Wander the lavender fields, eat some crabs, cross Puget Sound on the ferry back into Seattle.

Head up to tour the Boeing factory and watch a 747 get made. Take the ferry to Orcas Island and check in. Get back on the ferry to San Juan Island. Read all the historic markers about the Pig War, return to Orcas Island.

Take my son kayaking while the wife does the spa treatment. Drive up to the top of the hill on the island and admire the bicyclists pedaling it.

Return back to Seattle, try to tour Microsoft but get rebuffed. Take a boat tour of Lake Washington instead.

Hit the Experience Project Museum, Science Fiction Museum and Space Needle.

Swing by Pioneer Square and Elliott Bay.

Drink lots and lots of coffee the whole time.

Return Home.

That was probably about 10 days including travel. I'd have to do some forensic review of my Amex statements to recreate a day-by-day list.

I tourist fast and hard. Someday I'm going to blog my 90 minute full tour of the British Museum.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 20, 2008 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Sen. Ted Stevens, now defeated, says he will go home to Alaska and try to restore his reputation.


Just what the heck is in the drinking water up there? Is there something weird leaching out of the glacier melt and getting into the water table?

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 20, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

I thought Beth Giddyup was a porn star out of Frisco.

Posted by: Boko999 | November 20, 2008 3:21 PM | Report abuse

That reminds me. we also hit the REI store, found the houseboat Tom Hanks lived on in Sleepless in Seattle and watched some street performers rehearse an act involving an awful lot of burning torches. Plus saw the fish ladder and ate the cherries. Not to mention sticking my finger up the nose of the Fremont Troll.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 20, 2008 3:22 PM | Report abuse

Where do you find a good mohel for a horse?

Posted by: yellojkt | November 20, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Never seen Fish Called Wanda (hey, I'm still working up to Godfather II, gimme a break). There seems to be cascading identification errors today. And if I were bc, I'd have taken a lot more umbrage.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 20, 2008 3:32 PM | Report abuse

Yello, I saw the little boat dock where Tom Hanks sees Meg Ryan across the street for the first time. We drove past it and I thought that it looked familiar. When I figured it out I made my friend drive me back over so I could see it up close.

One of my favorite places in Seattle is the Wing Luke Asian Museum. Cool stuff in there. Also like their public libraries, all the latest DVDs and music available for free!

Posted by: MiddleofthePacific | November 20, 2008 3:34 PM | Report abuse

You're thinking of Bess Western, the motel heiress, Boko.

I don't know the answer to your question, yello. Just don't ask the rabbi at Beth Gelding.

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 20, 2008 3:40 PM | Report abuse

Drive by boodlinng:

Boko is a hooto.

Jewish horses and all the follow through makes me think of castration time in the mountains and on the prairie BUT 'tis way beyond circumcision.

News about Jan Napolitano taking the helm of DHS is encouraging. I went to college with JN at Santa Clara University....other famous peep alum is DeeDee Myers.....

Back to the saltmines and errands.....chilly out with some widely scattered and confused snow flurries along route one.....

Posted by: CollegequaParkian | November 20, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

Did you know either of them, CqP?

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 20, 2008 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Both, Mudge. JN would remember me if I smiled and invoked two names.

DeeDee M, apparently does not really remember me. She has conflated me with another strawberry-freckled, peace and justice gal.....

Posted by: CollegequaParkian | November 20, 2008 4:12 PM | Report abuse

How could one ever forget a strawberry-freckled p & j gal? Sheesh.

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 20, 2008 4:19 PM | Report abuse

Hmm, I suppose a govenor would have the background and experience to lead and manage DHS. It's such a conglomeration of unrelated agencies, kinda like state governments.

Posted by: slyness | November 20, 2008 4:22 PM | Report abuse

One of our hotels was just a block away from the then-new downtown Seattle Library, but our hours and their hours didn't coincide well enough for me to walk through it. It is a very pretty glass box.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 20, 2008 4:24 PM | Report abuse

Frostbitten, the smell varies depending on the processes used that day. In my neck of the woods, it seems that the smell is always worst on Friday nights, probably because that is when they use the acid and prepare the pulp for the actual factory work.

The suffocating corn-fed farts I asssociate with Sunday morning.

Mostly the noxious smells are not noticeable, unless the wind changes suddenly, because frankly, you can begin smelling the mill at least 2 miles out, so by the time you get near it, your nose has switched that smell off already.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 20, 2008 4:37 PM | Report abuse

Jan Napolito isn't taking the easiest assignment in gunmint. DHS is a complex multifaceted dept but many branches have been infected by strange, very unAmerican diseases. Couple of weeks ago we had a political appointee bloviating in a local paper. His views were so far off the security ball it was downright scary. He was talking about the price the Canadian do not have to pay to enter the USA. What? It's not a security thing it's a about a price in privacy, documentation, having the "right" papers, etc to pay. OK. Who will be next to have a price to pay? Does being American in itself should entail a price to pay? This guy would say yes, I am sure of it.
Another gem. Canadians should not expect to be treated differently than the citizen of any other country. OK. What other country is sharing a thousand miles of navigable water with the US? What other country is sharing another 2000 miles of undefended border, most often in remote, inhabited area?
This is the kind of thinking that led to the arrest and imprisonment of boaters rescued on the wrong side of the river or lake we might happen to share. This department has been working hard to alienate the people living at the borders as well. Turning watchful eyes into hostile citizens is one of their legacy.

I'm all for security but morons like him; nobody needs them.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 20, 2008 4:55 PM | Report abuse

yellojkt, I haven't been to the not-so-new-anymore library downtown. It is not so friendly to the acrophobic. I'm not too bad, but my sister (who is my main incentive to do touristy things with when she visits) is not fond of heights. I really should go and see it for myself.

Posted by: seasea | November 20, 2008 5:07 PM | Report abuse

oh cripes, I'm rantish today. sorry.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 20, 2008 5:09 PM | Report abuse

Shrieking, that is actually a very helpful assessment of DHS. I've been concerned about something I heard about civil rights of disabled employees being violated in the DHS (I can't say).

That significant sectors of the whole dept are infected by un-American thinking does make sense. After all, this is a department that sprang into existence under Bush-Cheney. I personally don't like the idea from A to Z at all. I do understand the need for communication between the law enforcement agencies, but do we need a brand-new giant monster of a department to do it?

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 20, 2008 5:17 PM | Report abuse

Justifiably, sd. It's part of the weird moral equivalence that since we have issues with our border to the south we have to be just as ruthless and arbitrary to the north. Those dang snowbacks keep slipping across the border and taking all our sitcom work out from hard working American comics. Yeah, I'm looking at you Michael J. Fox.

And don't get me even started on William Shatner, Peter Jennings (RIP), or Kenau Reeves.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 20, 2008 5:25 PM | Report abuse

Quiet on the Boodle this afternoon, just when I have a moment to check in? Is everybody commuting?

C'mon, people. 'Mudge, Bobsewell, TBG, Boko999, shriek, bc, LiT, ftb, let's get this party started.

Posted by: Yoki | November 20, 2008 6:12 PM | Report abuse

Hi Yoki! Check your email... just sent you a question about your plans to travel to these parts.

Posted by: -TBG- | November 20, 2008 6:28 PM | Report abuse

I'm on it, TBG

Posted by: Yoki | November 20, 2008 6:31 PM | Report abuse

Since nobody wants to play with me here, perhaps I'll get a better response there.

International BPH on Wednesday December 3? Usual time, usual place? TBG and I have been conspiring around my visit to DC, as is apparent. Perhaps I'll wear my bad boots!

Posted by: Yoki | November 20, 2008 7:04 PM | Report abuse

YAY! International BPH

Wed, December 3...

McCormick & Schmick's
1652 K Street, NW
5:00 pm until.... ?

Posted by: -TBG- | November 20, 2008 7:05 PM | Report abuse

There's been a lot of talk lately about "infrastructure" improvements as a reasonable economic stimulus. Also talk of not making the mistake of investing in obsolete infrastructures.

My wish is an executive order to place solar panels - BOTH water heating where applicable, and photovoltaics for grid integration - onto the rooftop of every qualified Federal building. That is, if they are flat or south-facing, and strong enough to hold the panels.

There are lots of federal buildings.

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 20, 2008 7:10 PM | Report abuse

I just found Michael Dirda's reading room:

Yoki, did you know about this? Have you been there?

Posted by: seasea | November 20, 2008 7:13 PM | Report abuse

I knew he was thinking about doing a group, but didn't know he'd launched it. Which was a grave oversight on my part. So cool. Perhaps when the press of work and other distractions eases, I will actually be able to participate.

Posted by: Yoki | November 20, 2008 7:15 PM | Report abuse

Today's Edwin Hubble's birthday. Garrison Keillor's Writer's Almanac includes a nice description of him:

Posted by: -pj- | November 20, 2008 7:22 PM | Report abuse

I'm here now, Yoki. (I was commuting homewardly between 5 p.m. and 7, EST.)

And jeez, I gave ya two pretty good threads to play with today. You wimmen are never satisfied. "More, more, more." I wish I had a nickel for every woman who told me that.

Then I'd have a dime.

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 20, 2008 7:40 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: Yoki | November 20, 2008 7:44 PM | Report abuse

Just spent a few minutes looking longingly at the Pike Place market vegie photo. It's only 9 degrees here now, and could get worse tonight. Dreaming of fresh vegetables is every bit as appealing as tropical isles.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | November 20, 2008 8:25 PM | Report abuse

That explains it, Frostbitten. I was wondering why, if the forecast was 28, how come it felt so much colder than yesterday. Turns out it's 11 F now and the high was probably not much higher either.

I'll have to begin wearing gloves all the time, which makes leashes so much more clumsy.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 20, 2008 8:35 PM | Report abuse

Welcome to the club Wilbrod, it's frikking cold here too.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 20, 2008 8:42 PM | Report abuse

As the old Indians used to say, when the dogs start sleeping on the floor spots located over the hot air ducts winter is just around the corner.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 20, 2008 8:48 PM | Report abuse

I'm in sympathy with you all. With (vicious!) windchill, it never got above -17C (1F) today, and it's worse now.

A three-dog night, for sure.

Posted by: Yoki | November 20, 2008 9:06 PM | Report abuse

Good evening, all.

It's been what passes for cold around here for the past few days, too.

Speaking of colds, I've come down with a bit of one. Didn't stop me from going to work, having a beer with a friend afterwards, driving an hour and a half home through lousy traffic, stopping for groceries on the way.

I've finished a bunch of other chores, and am watching Georgia Tech hand it to Miami (at least for the first half) with the sound off on ESPN, and have up on this here laptop to catch whatever they'll show of the Bengals at the Steelers, which is tied 7-7 at the moment. It's snowing, cool.

Might need to take some Theraflu soon.
By doze iz awl stuvvy ad my hed veels like a wadder bahloon.

Either Theraflu or shaped c4 charges for my sinuses...


Posted by: -bc- | November 20, 2008 9:21 PM | Report abuse

Where can I rent two extra dogs to help Wilbrodog out, Yoki?

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 20, 2008 9:34 PM | Report abuse

Why, Wilbrod, I happen to have two very large and furry dogs here, right now, under the desk. I'd be happy to combine them with your Wilbrodog and there we have it! Bob's your uncle!

Posted by: Yoki | November 20, 2008 9:51 PM | Report abuse

You northerners probably think we're a bunch of wusses down here not too far south of the Mason-Dixon, but we're just not used to this cold thing. Don't like it, don't want it, don't need it. Blech.

CqP, I think I may have made a major mistake and depressed myself. There was a line in Keillor's introduction aboiut how good some of Charles Bukowski's stuff was. I know who he is, but never read him. After getting off the bus tonight and picking up my daughter from her bus ride and letting her run an errand, I stopped into Borders for a few minutes while waiting for her, and went to the poetry section to see what they had by Bukowski.

Major mistake. They had 17 of his poetry books. Seventeen!!! And I found out later he had over a hundred books to his name by the time he died in 1994. I picked one off the shelf and began reading. It was kismet.

But now I depressed myself, looking at all those books, and thinking my life's too short to ever wade through his stuff. (And sssh! we have to whisper this part, so Padouk doesn't hear: one of Bukowski's major muses was a red=headed woman he writes about all the time.)

So now I'm all jealous and depressed.

Damn pomes. Damned Keillor.

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 20, 2008 9:59 PM | Report abuse

Bukowski. What a treat to run into him for the first time.

Here's some neat stuff by "Ding Darling"

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 20, 2008 10:12 PM | Report abuse

g'night boodle and thanks for the smemories (great word Raysmom). Thanks RD for your kind appreciation at 11:45AM.

Now I am going to see if two frostcats can generate enough heat to keep me from having to get up and turn the gas fireplace on.
Sweet dreams and fondue.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | November 20, 2008 10:23 PM | Report abuse

Oh well Mudge, you've met your Fred Vargas. I'm not into poetry much but I enjoyed the mystery/detective stories quite a bit. I discovered Fréderique a couple of years ago. She's about my age. She writes fantastic police thrillers, she is the world expert on some aspect of middle-age commerce and teaches middle ages history in a prestigious school. I haven't made a search on purpose but I suspect she looks great too. She probably has well behaved, bright kids as well. I hate her but I can't help myself and read all her books, seething against the injustice of it all. In vain, of course. Envy, concupiscence and jealously all in one. I'm so going to hades.

Wilbrod, the VLP is busy warming W1 and the old fool is watching football with me, so sorry I have no spare dog. There is a scrawny grey cat but who needs a cat?

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 20, 2008 10:27 PM | Report abuse

We have found that there is nothing quite so warm and heavy as a very, very comfortable cat sleeping on your chest. Almost impossible to move. One must simply lie there and accept the attention.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 20, 2008 10:38 PM | Report abuse

Thanks Mudge for the mention.

His "And The Moon And The Stars And The World" poem made me laugh.

By the way, think how I feel, every day I see ten poets better than me. Heck, even Wilbrodog writes better poetry than I do.

I'm beginning to see why writers hit the bottle.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 20, 2008 10:45 PM | Report abuse

Her picture is here on her Wiki page, SD. Age 51, a pleasant-looking lady.

Do you read her in French or English?

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 20, 2008 10:59 PM | Report abuse

The Thieves look good in the snow.

bc, I've used c4 for a limited number of tasks. I like the sheet stuff in particular. It's like green kraft cheese but with potential. It's useful stuff but sinus busting ain't one of them. Neo-citron?

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 20, 2008 10:59 PM | Report abuse

In French of course. There is so many great police/detective thriller in English one wonders why translation of Fred V. would be necessary. The Witches love her too. It's not about the stories, but the characters. I'm off for the night. The old dog is waiting for me.
And the Canadien won too. Next Saturday is St-Patrick Roy day then the Grey cup on Sunday.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 20, 2008 11:08 PM | Report abuse

I was watching the Tech-Miami game with a bunch of alumni. It was a great night but Tech isn't in charge of its destiny. We need some help with someone beating Carolina since we couldn't.

I've some Bukowski sitting around somewhere that I haven't gotten around to yet. It may be my entry into the Boodle Poet Society yet.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 20, 2008 11:08 PM | Report abuse


Much of CB and other highly prolific poets can be draft and dross. So, take heart.

SD -- VLP and VPL are WAY too similar.

Smiling on all, but in grading hell, however, shall close as if I were Horatio in Hamlet:

Good night, Sweet Prince(s and cesses)
And flights of angels sing thee (en) to thy rest(s).

BC, take some Jamesons and hit the hay. Trade you my hives, which occur in weather changes. Calamine lotion is great but the pink streaks everywhere are like the stuff in the Cat and the Hat Came Back.

Posted by: CollegequaParkian | November 20, 2008 11:10 PM | Report abuse

And The Moon And The Stars And The World

Long walks at night--
that's what good for the soul:
peeking into windows
watching tired housewives
trying to fight off
their beer-maddened husbands.

Charles Bukowski

(g/Nite, etc. Leave the light on for rainforest and daiwainian. yoki, get to bed, you have a big day ahead of you)

Posted by: CollegequaParkian | November 20, 2008 11:19 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, CP.

Just finished watching the Steelers beat the Bengals soundly on LiT's guy Polamalu had an interception at the very end (anticipating the ball quite nicely) to seal the game. Didn't get the TD he deserved last Sunday night though.

Went to and saw the news that AG Mukasey collapsed during a speech. Very scary stuff from the sound of it - I hope he's OK.


Posted by: -bc- | November 20, 2008 11:23 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, CP, for the validation.

I'm now to bed
To sleep off all this
nonsense I have said.

G'night Boodle.

Posted by: Yoki | November 21, 2008 12:14 AM | Report abuse

aloha, definitely not great timing for an l.a. visit. on sunday the official weather graphic for my zip code (and many others) was a smudgy brown sun with the label "smoke." i don't understand why the weather announcers start their air quality warnings with "if you can see or smell smoke" when the whole city can at least smell smoke.

Posted by: LALurker | November 21, 2008 12:50 AM | Report abuse

Good night, day shift.

Good day, night shift.

And so to bed for me.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 21, 2008 12:57 AM | Report abuse

For SciTim:

Posted by: DNA_Girl | November 21, 2008 12:59 AM | Report abuse

Thanks CP, for the leaving the light on. Never really care for darkness.

We’ve got crazy weather these few weeks. It’s scorching for a couple of hours in the morning, then cloudy in the afternoon with intermittent sun peeking out from the clouds and then rain at night. I guess I shouldn’t complain. Better this then have it rain non-stop. After all this is the rainy season.

The pigeons of my neighbour two houses down the road are always in my front yard rummaging for seeds. A couple of them are quite plump. When my dog sees them, she’d give chase. If she catches a pigeon (and I hope it is the plump one), it’s going to be my thanksgiving dinner. I have a crock pot and just the right herbs for it.

Posted by: rainforest1 | November 21, 2008 2:03 AM | Report abuse

rain: Just call it squab!

Posted by: bobsewell | November 21, 2008 2:41 AM | Report abuse

Yawn. Dawn Patrol, although it hasn't dawned here yet in snow-flurried Philadelphia.

Until Yoki gets here with the real eats, I picked up hot soft pretzels from the Philly Pretzel Factory (technically not open when I swung by, but a sale of 25 isn't turned down). Multiple mustards, cream cheese and cheese whiz, hot tea and coffee in the breakroom.

Posted by: -dbG- | November 21, 2008 6:16 AM | Report abuse

'Morning, Boodle. *shivering, yawning*

Bless you, dbG.

Must run.

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 21, 2008 6:20 AM | Report abuse

'morning all. The pigeons on Montreal had a hard time when the refugee from Vietnam started coming in in the mid 70s. The Vietnamese kids could not believe how stupid the birds were compared to their Asian cousins.
Cold and clear, nice weather for a flight at first light.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 21, 2008 6:27 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, Boodlers!

Brag present for Dawn Patrol. Coffeed up and roaring into the paling sky.

Posted by: Braguine | November 21, 2008 6:37 AM | Report abuse

I don't knoiw how many of you are Post Point members but I got this e-mail yesterday:

Meet the Post at the 2nd annual
Spirit of the Holidays Celebration!

Share a special evening with your favorite Washington Post columnists, reporters and editors.

Tuesday, December 2, 6:00 - 8:00 p.m.
The Washington Post, 1150 15th St, NW, Washington DC

Admission is FREE for PostPoints Members!

Come and meet the people behind the bylines and big stories at this informal evening reception with Washington Post staffers. Light refreshments will be served.

As an extra treat, select area retailers will also be on hand displaying great gift ideas for the holidays. There might even be some goodie bag items for you!

For more event details, log in to your PostPoints account at and click on Events & Contests or call 888.897.7876.
Come and meet…

Joel Achenbach
Marie Arana
Amy Argetsinger
Phil Bennett
Marcus Brauchli
Milton Coleman
Len Downie
Paul Farhi
Marc Fisher
Emilio Garcia-Ruíz
Tracy Grant
Fred Hiatt
Deb Howell
David Ignatius
Neil Irwin
Jura Koncius
Theola Labbé
Kevin Merida
Steven Pearlstein
Rob Pegoraro
Walter Pincus
Dana Priest
Roxanne Roberts
Frances Sellers
Michelle Singletary
George Solomon
Tom Toles
Katharine Weymouth
Michael Wilbon
Jonathan Yardley
Joe Yonan

I have a conflict that night because the forgot to screen this through me first, but it might be an interesting side event for any upcoming IBPHs.

Posted by: yellojkt | November 21, 2008 6:46 AM | Report abuse

God loves us so much more than we can imagine through Him that died for all, Jesus Christ.

Morning, friends. Well, there are a few flakes falling in your neck of the woods, Slyness, according to television news. I do hope they stay in your neck of the woods. The cold and wind are bad enough, but, please, no snow!

Mudge, Martooni, Scotty, and all, good morning.*waving*

I should be sleep, but I've been up for awhile now. I knew my sister would call this morning on her way to work, and she did. She talks until she gets to work, and it's all good.

Long list there, yello, should be fun. I think I'm going to stick close to the apartment today. I was out most of the day yesterday, and by evening, I was really cold.

Have a great day, folks, and stay warm. Check on your elderly neighbors.

Everyday in our local paper someone writes a letter predicting doomsday for the country because of the new leadership. And this is always expressed with the phrase, taking back, "our country", and "fight for America". These seem like battle cries to me. A call to the like-minded to marshall their resources and head to battle. With all the depressing economic news everyday, is that what we really want here, another Civil War?

Eugene Robinson's take on the auto industry is good, albeit the point has been made repeatedly, it bears saying again. It just shows how far these folks are from the ground when they show up in Washington begging for money in private jets. There are too many layers in that picture. I can see why they're still selling the same product looking at that behavior.

Time to swim.

Posted by: cmyth4u | November 21, 2008 7:16 AM | Report abuse

Beyond the shipping news.
A deeper look into piracy:

Posted by: Braguine | November 21, 2008 7:21 AM | Report abuse

I catch the ugly symbolism of the auto execs and their corporate jets (The Auto Execs and Their Corporate Jets. Sounds like a rock band! Or a "zany" movie title. "Ugly Symbolism" isn't too bad, either). Yet, they already own those jets. I suspect that the additional cost of operating the jets is small compared to the cost of simply owning them and paying the pilots and ground crew for *not* flying. And if the execs were to work for nothing, and sell the jets, and fire all the jet-related staff -- that would save maybe $30 million a year? $50 million? And leave a bunch of new people out of work. The shortfall that they came to beg for is measured in $billions or 10's of $billions. Symbolism aside, these issues don't even add up to chicken feed.

The thing we forget, in our mad social drive to be efficient and cut costs, is that costs almost always are salaries, not the purchase of things. Cutting costs means firing people. The job may go away, but the people don't. Realistically, we can't make society be more efficient on the whole unless we enlarge what society tries to accomplish with its existing labor pool. Unless we are willing to starve people to death, we must continue to find a way to support all our people, regardless of where we choose to allocate their labor.

I don't see a problem with decreasing executive pay, because those execs clearly aren't worth that much more than regular people, and they might make wiser business decisions if they weren't so divorced from the reality of ordinary lives. Firing the pilots and staff, on the other hand -- it sounds right, but has unintended consequences.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 21, 2008 7:31 AM | Report abuse

That's $30-50 million per year per company. Meant to hit Preview, hit Submit instead.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 21, 2008 7:32 AM | Report abuse

Morning Boodle. A slow start chez Yoki.

How about this.

Cinnamon French toast with apple/ricotta filling, sausages, homefries, brioche and apricot jam, cafe au lait, a cheese platter and assorted sliced melon with a selection of bread..? Several croques mesdames. Orange/lime juice. I brought along a nice quiche lorraine in case anybody is in a hurry.

Crunch day, red team review on Monday, so we'll see how it goes.

Very cold in Alberta; must go bundle up.

Happy Friday, friends.

Posted by: Yoki | November 21, 2008 7:44 AM | Report abuse

What is this "cold" that bc and 'Mudge speak of? I'm still waiting on snow! *quickly hiding my insulated boots under the Dawn Patrol flight desk* :-)

Sorta sounds like Mukasey might have locked his knees a little too long while standing up, let's hope it's nothing more serious.

I'm certain yellojkt is rather satisfied with the results of last night's college football tussle.

*faxin' bc the mini-RotoRooter for sinus cleanup following the judicious applciation of C4*

And why is everyone making such a fuss about leaks regarding Obama's Cabinet choices? I mean, the scope of people involved far outstrips the "no drama Obama" folks, so maintaining control over information is nothing more than a faint hope at this point. *shrug*

*TGIF-specially-with-a-short-week-coming-up-and-of-course-seeking-more-caffeine Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 21, 2008 7:48 AM | Report abuse

Yoki, I placed some unsalted butter in brownware crockery plate. Just a dab on the brioche. Lovely, thank you. Shall work off the splendid calories with my bike commute. I believe that we will have enough quiche for lunch.

Not really a CBukowski fan, however here is a morning-themed poem.

Poetry by Charles Bukowski -

It Was Just a Little While Ago
almost dawn
blackbirds on the telephone wire
as I eat yesterday's
forgotten sandwich
at 6 a.m.
an a quiet Sunday morning.

one shoe in the corner
standing upright
the other laying on it's

yes, some lives were made to be

CB was a disaster,leaving a wide wake of pain and devastation around him; so, his poetry wide-scatter shot fits the pattern. He should have submitted himself to editing, in life and words.

Posted by: CollegequaParkian | November 21, 2008 7:54 AM | Report abuse

Science Tim

I think I get your point. In comparing the cost of the private jets, their maintenance, support staff, pilot, and all that, it's peanuts when one takes in the larger picture of laborers and workforce of the auto industry itself? And if that is the correct take on what you said, good point.

What I was trying to say, and probably did not put it well, is that these are management individuals and if they're that far from laborer and workforce, how do we expect them to make good decision concerning the businesses that they run. Every business that wants to survive has to keep up with the times. If business doesn't do that, it fails to do business. The auto executives failed to keep up with the times. Now if it was from lack of having a vision or just plain stubborness, it still spells disaster. And their riding in corporate jets sort of keeps them in that delusion, because their bubble hasn't burst yet. They're still doing what they reguarly do. Does that make sense?

I'm out my league here, I know, but I hope you understand what I'm attempting to say.

Posted by: cmyth4u | November 21, 2008 7:59 AM | Report abuse

Thank you CP. Is this butter Danish? It's delicous!

I'm not sure Bukowski sets just the frivolous and giddy Friday-mood I seek. And ultimately, we all get edited by life, don't we?

Posted by: Yoki | November 21, 2008 8:01 AM | Report abuse

Cassandra... you make an excellent point about execs being out of touch. It's true.

Posted by: -TBG- | November 21, 2008 8:03 AM | Report abuse

Morning, all, and happy Friday.

The weatherguy missed the forecast again. Currently 20 degrees and 2 inches of snow, with some still falling. On our side of the mountain, it was supposed to be colder, with flurries.

Breakfast sounds yummy, Yoki. I'll need some of those calories to survive the day.

Cassandra, stay warm!

Posted by: slyness | November 21, 2008 8:07 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, you all.

The smemories of the boodle reveal that we all have poetic noses, just as I suspected...

bc, if you are still feeling punky try our dear, long gone, pediatrician's remedy: equal parts honey, lemon juice & whisky.

(no e in whisky, right, or is that just scotch whisky?)

Anyway, his remedy works for us. :-)

yello, I would love to meet Tom Toles, but do not have the membership to do so. Would be fun to have tiny window into his head to see how these political cartoons are put together!

Posted by: VintageLady | November 21, 2008 8:12 AM | Report abuse

Hi Cassandara. You're not missing anything, you've got it right, to the extent that I understand the situation. My somewhat cranky tone is not with respect to you but, I guess, I got riled up by Dana Milbank's column on this issue from yesterday.

I totally concur that the insulation of executives that permits them to live royal lives results in a lack of awareness of how their business decisions play out. Schadenfreude is sweet, when those guys get their come-uppance. Unfortunately, when their corporations collapse, those execs will stay rich, while the employees will be broke and out in the cold.

We seem to be in a time of government bailing out corporations that were run stupidly by people who do not significantly suffer the consequences of their poor decision-making. We, as a people, should take this opportunity to decide what kind of requirements might be placed on bail-out money to help compel responsible behavior and thoughtful decision-making. Limits on executive compensation? Required work in the labor pool? A day per month spent locked into stocks while employees pelt them with rotten produce? So many choices to consider.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 21, 2008 8:12 AM | Report abuse


Roit! Stop that! It's silly.

Now, no one likes a good laugh more than me. Except my wife. And her friends. Come to think of it, most people like a good laugh more than I do, but that's not the point!

*goes outside to properly arrange the letters on the recruiting sign*


Posted by: Scottynuke | November 21, 2008 8:13 AM | Report abuse

I don't object to the execs high living. What raises my umbrage level is that besides giving them billions, we end up financing their high living as a business expense.

Years ago, in the corporate world, I had an airplane--the bum deal was I had to fly it myself. :o(

Posted by: Braguine | November 21, 2008 8:24 AM | Report abuse

VintageLady... I think anyone can sign up for membership in Post Points. If you are a subscriber to the paper Post you are eligible for a higher level membership, but I've never figured out how that helps me.

Go here to sign up...

Posted by: -TBG- | November 21, 2008 8:48 AM | Report abuse

The reason that auto execs kept building SUVs even though there were signs that it wasn't a good long-term strategy is that corporations are not focused on the long term. I'm not sure when it happened, but somewhere along the line, the focus became maximizing *this quarter's* earnings. Most likely because their bonuses are based on short-term measures. And it's what the shareholders demanded. Sadly, it isn't just the automakers--it's at the heart of what went wrong with the securities traders, mortgage lengers, investment banks, et al. Develop some clever new *product* to pump up short-term earnings, long-term consequences be d@mned.

How to change this? It will take masses of p1ssed-off shareholders demanding that corporations measure and compensate their executives based on long-term goals. And be willing to forego big short-term earnings increases. Yeah, right.

Posted by: Raysmom | November 21, 2008 8:56 AM | Report abuse

SCC: lenders. And I previewed, too.
*going to penalty box, feel shame*

Posted by: Raysmom | November 21, 2008 8:58 AM | Report abuse

Somehow mortgage lengers has a nice ring to it, Raysmom.

Posted by: -TBG- | November 21, 2008 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Meteor falling in dr's backyard last night.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 21, 2008 9:23 AM | Report abuse

Wow, that was a pretty impressive meteor. Bet it scared a lot of people initially.

Brag, I know what kind of "corporate aircraft" you flew, and who the "company" in question was. Somehow, though, I don't think your guys had in-flight movies and beverage service.

Yoki, is orange/lime juice a choice of either orange or lime juice, or is it a combo drink I'm not familiar with? 'Cuz it's got me thinkin'... [and that's often not such a good thing].

So you want frivolous and giddy on a Friday, huh? I usually look with disdain and elitist superiority upon such things, but am willing to overlook my usual high standards on this one occasion, so I'm thumbing through my index file (searching under "frivolities, gid-making") ISO something appropriate, but finding nothing except an old clipping about Richard Simmons.

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 21, 2008 9:50 AM | Report abuse

And, oh, forgot to mention breakfast was really excellent this morning, BTW. The apple/ricotta cinammon french toast made my knees buckle.

(Since we started having these virtual breakfasts and lunches I've put on a virtual 14 pounds. I'm gonna need to go on a virtual diet pretty soon, and start monitoring my virtual cholesterol.)

(I wonder if I'll have any better luck on a virtual diet than the 30+ years of failure on real diets. That would probably bring on some virtual depression, I would suspect. Then I'd need to start taking some virtual antidepressant medications. This whole thing could just spiral out of virtual control.)

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 21, 2008 9:57 AM | Report abuse

*faxin' 'Mudge the virtual treadmill and virtual Bowflex* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 21, 2008 9:59 AM | Report abuse

At a Kyocera plant near here, I once saw the Plant Manager out in the main floor sweeping up before he went home. White shirt, tie, no jacket. I was told he did that every day. Symbolic; the point, anybody could figure out.

I have also noticed that input from shareholders in the auto biz have not been particularly represented in the media so far that I know of. I can't predict what they'd say. Except about executive pay and jets. I know the airlines got pension bailouts, and underwent bankruptcy, and are still flying now.

The American consumer will resist smaller passenger vehicles as long as massive freight is shipped in heavy semis on the same roads we commute on. The difficulty of resolving this conundrum is so great no one will address the issue whatsoever. This locks us in to an extremely inefficient transportation system which is helping bankrupt our energy system. Some are willing to surrender the asphalt entirely to shipping and move people en masse onto light rail; and as everyone knows, that is not a popular solution and for good reasons.

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 21, 2008 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Yup, mudge. Since I've been given my marching order this morning (6 scones from the Scone Wich, at least 1 orange-cranberry and 2 lemon-popy seed) I've been dreaming of warm scones with strawberry jam washed down by orange juice. My virtual blood sugar is stuck high in the double digits since then.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 21, 2008 10:04 AM | Report abuse

SCC poppy seed

Popy seed=yuck.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 21, 2008 10:05 AM | Report abuse

What's wrong with light trail, Jumper? I wish we had more of it, especially reaching down into So. Md. (which was initially proposed).

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 21, 2008 10:06 AM | Report abuse

g'morning boodle. Frostcats #s 4 and 5 do not generate the heat that #1 (RIP) could make on his own. It's going to be a long winter if they can't step up their game.

Barely above 0F here this morning with snow falling like dandruff. "Dry as a popcorn fart," as Frostdaddy says.

Anyone ready for an espresso or latte made with bicycle delivered Peace Coffee?
Goes well with either Yoki's fine repast or dbG's cheese whiz (scraping bits off the side of the jar with bits of pretzel as I type). You can choose from half and half, whole milk, 2%, and skim. Also an unopened box of soy if you ignore the "best if used by" date.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | November 21, 2008 10:07 AM | Report abuse

Shriek, that's better than a poopy-seed fer sure!!!


Posted by: Scottynuke | November 21, 2008 10:11 AM | Report abuse

I know, SD. Orange juice is the single worst thing there is on the planet in terms of spiking blood sugar and hpoglycemic loading.

Everyone always says that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and yadda yadda yadda, but the vast majority of breakfast food (whether one likes it or not being immaterial) is really high-carb and high-sugar. Very difficult to find an actual "healthy" breakfast for people like me, anyone on Atkins or any other kind of diet.

Realistically, people like me have no business coming within a country mile of stuff like eggs, bacon, sausage, toast/french toast, waffles, pancakes, pastries, 90% of cereals, very much fruit, etc.

Remember those TV commercials and "recommended" food charts in the 1950s and 1960s showing what a "proper" breakfast ought to have? Jeez. Sure, if you are a farmer, steel worker, coal miner, pro football middle linebacker, or some sort of heavy-duty manual laborer, perhaps you need -- and can burn away -- all that fat and calories in a work day.

The big joke was, a lot of those ads were put out by the American Heart Association, an organization in my view that is and always was secretly subsidized by the American funeral parlor industry. Those folks at the AHA will kill you.

Posted by: Curmudgeon- | November 21, 2008 10:16 AM | Report abuse

SCC Witch, has been stuck, etc

I cease and desist, I have too many things on my mind.

Puppy seed, obtained from shaking a puppy coming from the outside, should be tasty.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 21, 2008 10:19 AM | Report abuse

I'll take a latte, frosti!

Don't worry 'Mudge, next week it'll be all low-fat yogurt and whole grains :)

Posted by: Yoki | November 21, 2008 10:25 AM | Report abuse

I'm actually in favor of more rail, Mudge. I wish I could tie it in with Amtrak, too. Maybe a hub system with non-stops, so I could maybe zip to Atlanta and change trains and again head nonstop to Jacksonville, where my peeps would be glad to pick me up. Obviously, I can't handle 28 hrs to, say, Zolfo Springs, if I indeed needed to go there. So that means an automobile.

I still suspect a lot more cargo could go by rail if a fast routing system could be put in place. If UPS or Fedex merged with CSX or Maersk, perhaps some engineers could come up with some new stuff...

Re. the economy, this guy scares me: John A. Allison of BB&T is a Randian. In my darker paranoias, I still wonder if these guys have leveraged all the gelt into a data haven and are emulating John Galt in their fantasies.

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 21, 2008 10:30 AM | Report abuse

Florida nearly started a high-speed rail system about 9 years ago, but newly-elected Gov. Jeb Bush killed it.

Amtrak had a deal going so there'd be rail transit along the Atlantic coast using Florida East Coast Railway tracks (connecting to the Tri Rail tracks in Palm Beach County). Died for lack of funds.

Orlando may actually get some commuter rail. Light rail to serve the tourist-oriented International Drive corridor didn't make it.

Orlando is also becoming a dense urban area. If new development resumes, it would be worth trying to set up a planned community designed around local rail transportation--maybe using street cars, which are pretty cheap. A loop connecting shopping, office park, and apartment/condo housing could generate enough traffic to be workable.

Jacksonville's Amtrak station is in an awful neighborhood, the sort that no one should have to enter. I assume the site was selected to kill off rail service.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | November 21, 2008 10:46 AM | Report abuse

.... then again, the Florida East Coast Railway moves huge numbers of trailers, ready to be connected to semi trucks at their destinations. A fair number carry names like Wal-Mart.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | November 21, 2008 10:48 AM | Report abuse

I have always like trains and train travel.Nice way to see the country without driving.When my dad worked for the B&O we could go anywhere for free,mostly day trips to DC,Philly,western maryland. We are planning to catch the inaguaration using the train either out of Baltimore,or st. dennis. Yes yello,we will be going over the Thomas Viaduct.

Nice to hear trains off in the distance here in west by god,they travel along the potomac in and out of the many tunnels.

Posted by: greenwithenvy | November 21, 2008 11:04 AM | Report abuse

Handing Yoki a steaming latte.

The Hip Urban Loft is two blocks from the proposed light rail station in downtown St. Paul (and on the skyway, so no need to go outdoors in bad weather). If everything moves very swiftly it should open in 2014. It's unlikely that either Mr. F or I will use it on a daily basis, but to be able to go to the airport or downtown Minneapolis without a car would be an enormous benefit to us. A couple hours of parking at either place would cost as much as the fare, and travel time would be about the same-light rail is slower, but no time spent circling blocks in search of a spot on the street or a parking deck with open spaces.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | November 21, 2008 11:15 AM | Report abuse

Thank you frostbitten. This is a kindness greater than you know.

Posted by: Yoki | November 21, 2008 11:34 AM | Report abuse

I like OJ, Mudge, the key is those tiny glasses almost like you'd use for whiskey shots.

As for sugar, amen. I try and eat cereal with complex carbs, but almost everything comes with a touch (or more) of sugar anyway.

I've tried to learn to like hot plain oatmeal, but it ain't happening, nor does it even feel any more healthy for the blood sugar.

Healthy helping: 1/2 to 3/4 cups.

Thank goodness, there's always my favorite European breakfast: leftovers.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 21, 2008 11:35 AM | Report abuse

Wilbrod, at our house the oatmeal additives are no-sugar-added applesauce, cinnamon, and blue- or blackberries. Yum. Though I admit that I haven't calculated the sugar contents of the applesauce and berries. Don't tell me. I'd like to hang onto my healthiness illusions.

Posted by: -bia- | November 21, 2008 12:00 PM | Report abuse

Howdy. Good morning, thanks to Yoki for the tasty breakfast, and I'd love a latte, Frostbitten. I'm not so worried about the virtual calories piling up as I am the actual ones encouraged by all these conferences I've been haunting. I avoid the morning pastry tables, but the lunches and dinners are substantial, even when I skip whole parts of the meal.

Thanks to DNA Girl for the "head scritchy" Sinfest. I've been away from the cartoon this week. Our rabbit Beatrice demands "head scritchy" regularly and insistently. I was surprised an animal with such a limited vocal range can be so expressive, but her grunts and occasional squeaks are fraught with meaning.

Posted by: Ivansmom | November 21, 2008 12:04 PM | Report abuse

I'm getting ready to head off into the wild blue yonder for a week or so. While it isn't very likely I'll win the tiara (I lost my mind -- probably left it in the car or something -- and took 8 upsets), if I *do* win it on Monday, can someone please put it in my cubbyhole in the bunker? You can try it on, pose for snaps, etc. but please don't put it on the dead animal head over the's just not dignified.

Be warned though...Mudge has probably got it bent out of shape a bit. (He's been wearing it two weeks now. Probably sleeps in it too.)

Have a happy day and a happy holiday all.

Posted by: LostInThought | November 21, 2008 12:11 PM | Report abuse

Y'all are just torturing me with all this talk of oatmeal. I love oatmeal, plain or adorned. It is about oatmeal weather here finally. Although it is nowhere near as cold here as elsewhere, the temperature did hit the twenties (F) last night and is supposed to hover in the mid-forties today. Our vicious north wind (flags straight out) drops the apparent temperature right back down. At least it is clear, with no snow or (more likely here) ice.

I have to counter this oatmeal daydream. I'm going to find lunch now.

Posted by: Ivansmom | November 21, 2008 12:23 PM | Report abuse

Yoki, no need to do anything rash and go the low-fat yogurt route on my account. The virtual breakfasts you've been serving up are fine (extraordinary!) just the way they are. I wasn't complaining, believe me.

Posted by: curmudgeon-1 | November 21, 2008 12:25 PM | Report abuse

Take the flying cars, I want moving sidewalks.

Here's news about a search for Dyson spheres coming up mostly empty. It's just an abstract (pay for the article). Further news in "Where are they?":

To clarify somewhat, Charlotte has really moved quickly on light rail, going from zero to working, with more planned, in a relatively short time. The libertarianoid and other sorts of anklebiters have been frothing and still are. (to some folks here: I mean the uninformed libertarians, not y'all - the "billions for asphalt, not a penny for rail" types)

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 21, 2008 12:26 PM | Report abuse

For W_Gnome a recipe for "not so plain" oatmeal:

2-3 tbsp quick cooking oats (or whatever they're called)
2/3 tsp butter (you could use more or less; with less, be more careful during sauteeing so as not to burn the oats).
Sautee oats until a touched by a teeny tiny pink tinge (better indicator for me is a lovely toasted sweet smell)
Add a few black peppercorns, cardamom seeds, a couple flakes of saffron (preferably mashed in a tsp of warm milk),some folks add a few caraway seeds as well a pinch of salt and a couple tsp sugar/splenda to taste, and enough milk (2-3 cups, maybe?) to boil it down to a good thick consistency in about 15 min. If the mix congeals into a solid mass when it cools to room temp, you added too little milk or boiled it too much. Add some more milk, and heat up the mix again for a few minutes to recover your favorite consistency

Eat it hot. If possible with fire roasted papad.

Hi Ivansmom :-)

Posted by: DNA_Girl | November 21, 2008 12:26 PM | Report abuse

Why thank you, Curmudgeon. Working on a special menu for Sunday brunch...

Posted by: Yoki | November 21, 2008 12:29 PM | Report abuse

I'm with you, Wilbrod-- I've tried my best to like oatmeal, cream of wheat etc., in their various guises, and it just ain't happenin' for me either.

For me the best breakfast would actually be a basic lunchtime-type of salad bar, lotsa greens and stuff, some tuna, a couple slices of pepperoni on the side, etc. I'm told the Israelis eat salad-type stuff for breakfast routinely.

In the mid 1970s I worked a third shift job for three years, and got up about 5 p.m. and had "breakfast" with my family every morning (night) about 6 p.m.--ate conventional dinner food for "breakfast. Loved it.

Posted by: curmudgeon-1 | November 21, 2008 12:34 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if all the Dyson Sphere proponents have ever considered the engineering issue of what to do about pressure buildup from the solar wind...

*lost-in-a-classic-(perhaps-even-my-favorite)-ST:TNG-episode-glazed-eye-kinda look*


Posted by: Scottynuke | November 21, 2008 12:34 PM | Report abuse

Gosh darn it. First oatmeal (thanks for the great-sounding variation, DNA Girl!) and now Cream of Wheat. Already I'm thinking of naturally sweet and delicious Cream of Rice. Pure torture. That's it, now I'm really off to find some lunch.

Posted by: Ivansmom | November 21, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Sunday brunch? Can I bring mimosas and bloody Mary's (made with Absolut vodka)?

Posted by: curmudgeon-1 | November 21, 2008 12:41 PM | Report abuse

What's with this curmudgeon-1 stuff? 'Mudge finally got the cloning machine working? :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 21, 2008 12:51 PM | Report abuse

That sounds good, DNA girl, especially the sauteeing.

I like oatmeal cookies a lot, but just can't hack the plain boiled oatmeal taste even with sugar, milk, cinnamon, etc.

I guess the solution is to develop some kind of sugar-free savory oatmeal cookie-- one that doesn't make me think I'm eating dog biscuits...

Yes, Mudge, you should consider that route, I always find myself far more full all day when I ate dinner leftovers for breakfast.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 21, 2008 12:55 PM | Report abuse

We've back from our morning ride in two to six inches of snow, depending on location. Mr. T loves to drive on dirt roads in the snow, so that's what we did, in his little red truck. It's a Dodge Dakota with 4-wheel drive, which he engaged a couple of times to get up slopes and around curves. (It's an LRT, as opposed to a BRT, a big red truck, or fire engine.)

I make bran muffins for Mr. T's breakfast. It's a recipe he got from a diet doctor once upon a time, slightly modified so as to be readable. I was amazed at how disconnected the original was; it was unnecessarily difficult to know how to put them together. I make 24 and freeze them, then he heats them in the microwave. Somebody remind me, and I'll post it the first of the week when I get home.

Posted by: slyness | November 21, 2008 12:56 PM | Report abuse

For some reason, the *&%$#@%$&^% registration thing wouldn't let me post witrhout signing in again, and it wouldn't accept my previous log-in data, so I had to re-register all over again, and it wouldn't let me use the old name.

Posted by: curmudgeon-1 | November 21, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Scotty how about Stella 454!!!!
Hartcourt Fenton Mudd you no good man,have you been drinking again!!!!

Hey Yoki,send us a nice blast of that warm canadian air......we are freezing down here

Posted by: greenwithenvy | November 21, 2008 12:58 PM | Report abuse

According to the weather radar, it's snowing east of here in PG County (CqP turf), Balmer, 'Napolis and points north, and on the Eastern Shore. Just got off the phone with dottir#2 in Virginia Beach (Kim territory); she says it's snowing down there.

Why aren't I living in St. Maarten" Heck if I know.

Posted by: curmudgeon-1 | November 21, 2008 1:04 PM | Report abuse

The registration thing probably got clogged up with all that oatmeal...


Posted by: Scottynuke | November 21, 2008 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Mission accomplished; the 6 scones are secured in my shoulder bag. 2 orange-cranberry,
It's election day for our union today and the comrades had the good idea of ordering pizza to foster a good electoral turn-out. Baiting engineers and surveyors with pizza is just too easy but at least they are using my union dues for something that provides instant gratification. The comrades ordered from a good pizzeria too, as we are a much better class of commie rabble.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 21, 2008 1:09 PM | Report abuse

SCC. I can't even cut&paste correctly.

2 orange-cranberry, 2 lemon-poppyseed, one ginger-something and one cream-vanilla.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 21, 2008 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Mudge, I have a substitute for the Absolut - Metore Old Russion label vodka, produced right here in Oklahoma. I think the distillery may be in downtown Oklahoma City. The owner got the recipe from his Latvian father-in-law. It is good. I keep a bottle of the lime-flavor in the freezer, because you never know when you'll need some good citrusy vodka.

Posted by: Ivansmom | November 21, 2008 1:14 PM | Report abuse


Whaddabout the strawberry tart? You know, the one without so much *ahem* in it...

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 21, 2008 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Metore, huh? I'll have to look for it. And they have a lime variant? That sounds good. I've lately taken to putting a tetch of lime juice in my Black Russians. I bet I could just use the lime vodka.

(Think Brag would be offended if I switched to an Okie vodka?)(Of course the cheapie Ribikoff I drink now was probably made in Bayonne or some place like that, anyway.)

Posted by: curmudgeon-1 | November 21, 2008 1:21 PM | Report abuse

gwe, be careful what you wish for.

Posted by: Yoki | November 21, 2008 1:21 PM | Report abuse

Happy Friday Everyone. Heading into the last weekend before Thanksgiving (The 'merican kind that is.)

The Padouk residence has been in kind of a holding pattern as we await the beginning of the Holiday Season. For the holidays are something that my wife takes extremely seriously.

The days between Thanksgiving and Christmas require extensive planning and precise execution in order to be considered successful. And this year will include the increased logistical complexity of a change in venue. For this will be the first year that the in-laws will not be living in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.

Therefore, the traditional three hour trip northwards for Thanksgiving will be replaced by two separate eight hour expeditions south to Myrtle Beach.

You see, my mother-in-law is driving up today and then heading south with my wife and daughter tomorrow. My son and I will be joining them next Wednesday. The reunited nuclear family will all return on late Saturday.

Should any of this seem too confusing, I would be pleased to forward to you the Complete Annotated Master Plan under separate copy.

Please note that this will require my son and I to exist sans adult supervision for several days. We are already making a secret list of movies to watch, including “This is Spinal Tap” and “Monty Python at the Hollywood Bowl.”

You know, the classics.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 21, 2008 1:25 PM | Report abuse

Remember, boys and girls, vodka is the same thing as industrial ethanol, but diluted.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 21, 2008 1:26 PM | Report abuse

Here's Metore's Web site:

Apparently the recipe is the owner's father-in-law's recipe. I'm guessing they make it out of wheat instead of potatoes (as most domestic vodka really is made from wheat, not the spud of legend.)

OK, I'm sold. I'll look for it. Thanks for the tip, IM.

Posted by: curmudgeon-1 | November 21, 2008 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Here is some frivolity for Friday. Oxford researchers used a database to compile the ten most irritating phrases (reported in the Telegraph last week). I'm sure the Boodle can add a significant number.

The top ten most irritating phrases:

1 - At the end of the day

2 - Fairly unique

3 - I personally

4 - At this moment in time

5 - With all due respect

6 - Absolutely

7 - It's a nightmare

8 - Shouldn't of

9 - 24/7

10 - It's not rocket science

Posted by: Yoki | November 21, 2008 1:29 PM | Report abuse

Bottom line, it's ...

Exact same.

Fer sher.

Time frame.

It's not brain surgery (variant of rocket science, see above).

In regards to...

Towards... (sometimes pronounced tords)

Anyways (pronounced innyways)

Know what I'm sayin'?


Mah fella Murikins

My friends


Posted by: curmudgeon-1 | November 21, 2008 1:36 PM | Report abuse

XX- "Since 9/11" and "after 9/11"

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 21, 2008 1:36 PM | Report abuse

With all due respect I personally find that list silly. It’s a nightmare to think that we need to be worried about irritating clichés 24/7. At this moment in time those people shouldn’t of made such a fuss. I absolutely believe that at the end of the day creating fairly unique prose shouldn't be such a big deal. I mean, it’s not rocket science.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 21, 2008 1:40 PM | Report abuse

Asta la vista, baby

Make my day

Any political speech that ends with "...and may God bless America."

Awesome (reaaaalllly hate this one)

Posted by: curmudgeon-1 | November 21, 2008 1:41 PM | Report abuse

I was going to say "Mornin'", but I guess it's a little late for that.

I don't know if the bug that bit me came off the lake with all that lake effect snow or if Bean brought it home from school. All I know is I feel like something Death would want to sweep under the carpet.

And I have no time for this. Business is finally taking off and I've got so much to do... I just want to scream. But that would probably hurt.

Now I can't remember... do you feed a cold and starve a fever or just cut off all the body parts that hurt and hope you have enough parts left to be identified by the coroner?


Off to try to rustle up some hot tea with lemon and a shot or five of whiskey...

Posted by: martooni | November 21, 2008 1:43 PM | Report abuse

With all due respect, Yoki, while that list is fairly unique, at this moment in time I personally rely 24/7 on just such phrases to further communication. Otherwise, it's a nightmare. We're all just trying to connect. It's not rocket science. At the end of the day, Yoki, you absolutely shouldn't of.

Posted by: Ivansmom | November 21, 2008 1:44 PM | Report abuse

That's so [pick any one]: over, yesterday, 90s, 80s, 70s,

Whatever (whatevvvvvvurrrrrr)

That's so retarded/That's so gay (really hate both of these)

Talk to the hand

Posted by: curmudgeon-1 | November 21, 2008 1:48 PM | Report abuse

I'll try and forget all those.

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 21, 2008 1:51 PM | Report abuse

And now a Sciency Moment (from an unlikely source, I admit). Over at The Other Paper John Tierney has an article about a real-life ray gun being tested by soldiers in Iraq. He says its laser beam can demolish a roadside bomb from 300 meters.

If we've finally got the ray gun working, can the hover car be far behind? How about that teleporter?

Posted by: Ivansmom | November 21, 2008 1:51 PM | Report abuse

RD and Ivansmom, bravo!

Posted by: Yoki | November 21, 2008 1:52 PM | Report abuse

martooni, my health recommendation:

feed a cold
feed a fever
feed an amputated limb
feed bubonic plague
feed athlete's foot
feed ingrown hair
feed ebola
feed pinkeye
feed a hernia

I'll be here for another hour in case you have questions about these and similar recommendations.

Posted by: curmudgeon-1 | November 21, 2008 1:52 PM | Report abuse

we'll see....
go figure....

off to work

Everyone have a Great day!!!

Posted by: greenwithenvy | November 21, 2008 1:52 PM | Report abuse

In retrospect, RD's and my prompt responses were a little frightening.

Or maybe that's just me.

Posted by: Ivansmom | November 21, 2008 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Of course I just worked 16 years for a financial publisher, but the phrase I hate the most is "going forward."

Posted by: -TBG- | November 21, 2008 2:05 PM | Report abuse

I don't think ALL of them are due for banning. Some are. I will translate.

1 - At the end of the day
With all the bull$1t subtracted

2 - Fairly unique
One, but not all, of its characteristics is unique.

3 - I personally
I want to fool you into thinking I'm modest.

4 - At this moment in time
At the end of the day, what I'm about to say will be irrelevant

5 - With all due respect
You, sir, are an idiot.

6 - Absolutely
I said "yes" once already. Are you paying attention?

7 - It's a nightmare
The people I'm dealing with are monsters. And idiots.

8 - Shouldn't of
I am an idiot.

9 - 24/7
We don't sleep, we are now psychotic

10 - It's not rocket science
You, sir, are an idiot.

(Bonus round)

11 - Y'all

12 - Time frame
I'm not too quick so I'll say "frame" and gain a second to think some more.

13 - Try and
I am an idiot.

14 - Bottom line
If we do it your way, we waste a week, torpedo the budget, learn nothing new, and lose money.

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 21, 2008 2:09 PM | Report abuse

Truckloads of citrus are on their way to be squeezed. The "not from concentrate" juice should be tasting a bit fresher.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | November 21, 2008 2:21 PM | Report abuse

The newest manager in my office grates my gums with these phrases:

pull the trigger
drive toward
make it happen

The guy is like a walking version of Buzzword Bingo.

Posted by: Raysmom | November 21, 2008 2:40 PM | Report abuse

SOS signal sighted from Hillary camp.

Posted by: DNA_Girl | November 21, 2008 2:43 PM | Report abuse

Good afternoon, all.

Zooming in and out of the Boodle today, as I'm attending funeral services for an in-law who passed away earlier this week.

Getting together with the family shortly, and working with my Mom to bring large trays of hot food.

LiT if you win the Football Tiara you can count on us storing it the Place of Honor in your cubby while you're away, and the few pictures we may take of ourselves posting with it will be tactless. I mean tasteful.

I promise it won't show up on the Lone Mule over the mantle. Or at least in any pictures. Have a great trip.

Ivansmom - as far as ray guns go - do radar/microwave, laser, radio, and infra-red count? There's a lot more beamin' going on around us than most people think. Detonating and IED at 300 meters is pretty good stuff. If you asked an ant at the focal point of a magnifying glass on a sunny day about ray guns, he'd probably tell you he already knows more than he wants to.

Military aircraft radar's pretty scary at close range, too.

And another phrase we're nervous about, "My friends,"

Heck, when GWB says, "My fellow 'mericans," I get uncomfortable.

Sometimes it's not what you say, but how it's said and who's saying it. Context - even for seemingly empty phrases - can mean a lot IMO.


Posted by: -bc- | November 21, 2008 2:44 PM | Report abuse

Ivansmom, I fear unnatural exposure to government bureaucracies has made us shockingly proficient at slinging buzz words.

We knew the risks when we signed up.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | November 21, 2008 2:53 PM | Report abuse

I love orange juice, DotC -- I just can't have any. It's like mainlining cyanide for me.

Every year we get a case or two of Florida Honeybells, which come out in January. Those I can eat-- actuall oranges aren't quite as bad for glycemic loading, although they are still pretty high. So you can fax me a case of them beauties after New years, if you want.

Posted by: curmudgeon-1 | November 21, 2008 2:53 PM | Report abuse

Apologies if you've seen this before...

A Proposal for an Effective Mechanism

In order to facilitate appropriate and proactive initiatives for effective response to cross-cutting management needs, a comprehensive mechanism is proposed. The lack of hands-on, mission-oriented linkages currently hinders efforts to achieve optimal results, limits activities that foster specific innovative procedures, and fails to encourage key program components. Analysis indicates several underlying factors responsible for these negative accomplishments: a shortage of substantive guidelines to guide cross-sector commitment; inadequate coordination of methodologies; failure to dialogue among critical information networks; and significant shortfalls in available funding alternatives. While reliable data are lacking, and issues of accountability remain unresolved, it has been established that these items constitute the principal constraints on improved productivity. The net effect is that all institutional capabilities are experiencing insufficient growth. A problematic scenario is envisioned unless flexible criteria are adopted and a strategic agenda is developed and implemented.

Sad part is, there are probably quite a few of us that understand what this said.

Posted by: Raysmom | November 21, 2008 3:01 PM | Report abuse

I'm feeling the same pain. I had an abrupt and frightening intro to type 2 diabetes fairly recently--my blood sugar level evidently tripled.

I've been too busy to do the requisite reading on the condition, but published glycemic indexes seem useful for avoiding the worst foods, which regrettably include watermelon and pineapple. I figure the crisp "low carb" potatoes grown in Florida are probably ok. Looks like the cabbage family of vegetables are utterly beneficial.

Honeybells are great, but so are temple oranges, which I somehow missed last year. I live in the Indian River grapefruit district, so it's possible to pop over to the packing house.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | November 21, 2008 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Dave... are you back from Japan? How was the trip?

Posted by: -TBG- | November 21, 2008 3:11 PM | Report abuse

Transl.: Fix it. Or you all will experience...FLAMING DEATH!!!!!

I'm presently at a terminal at the Governor's School of the Arts, waiting for my daughter to complete her day of shadowing.

Posted by: -jack- | November 21, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Add to the list:

drink the Kool-aid

sing Kum-by-ah

Leaving shortly to go down to the vacation house on the banks o' the Potomac. Tomorrow down there is a "destination wedding" held at the nearby Stratford Hall, family homestead of Robert E. Lee and the Lee clan. The bride is the second daughter of my wife's best friend, who with her husband are the couple we built the vacation house with. Both the bride and groom are Army lieutenants; she did 6 months in Iraq (in the Green Zone) and he's currently stationed in Afghanistan (second tour, IIRC). They got a brief window of opportunity when he's got this 10-day furlough, then after a brief honeymoon he goes back to Afghanistan and she goes back to the Army Corps of Engineers in Savanah. (My wife sewed the veils for the bride as well as the bride's older sister at her wedding a few years ago. I ain't kidding when I say I'm married to the Martha Stewart of Southern Maryland.)

I shall fortify myself with stiff drink in order to get through the next 48 hours. With luck, I will sober up just in time for the Redskins kickoff Sunday afternoon. Consequently, I shall be off-Boodle until then. In my absence, I'm turning over the helm to bc, whom I trust will be diligent in not allowing too much redecorating of the bunker or the shop steward's office.

Everybody have a good weekend. (Yoki, please save me a bit of virtual brunch. I know it's a high crime and misdemeanor to have to microwave your cooking, but I don't have any choice in the matter; I am fortune's fool, as always. All the makings for the mimosas and bloody Marys have been faxed to you.)

Posted by: curmudgeon-1 | November 21, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

For me there is only one thing worse than oj and it's the love of my life; beer.
Maltose jumps to my blood straight from the bottle, I barely have to drink the beer.

DotC, is it possible that the Florida aranges are a little late this year? Mrs. D candies her own orange peel to use in some of her cookies. I usually buy the new-crop navel oranges from Florida for that but I couldn't find any this year. I had to buy some South-African oranges (goldknight?). It worked but the peel was too thin and the texture wasn't quite right, whatever that means.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 21, 2008 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the drinks 'Mudge. Watch your fax at about 11:30 on Sunday; I'll send you two platefuls of brunch while the food is still hot and fresh.

Posted by: Yoki | November 21, 2008 3:28 PM | Report abuse


My heartfelt condolences on your loss, my friend.


Posted by: Scottynuke | November 21, 2008 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Angertainment. I hate it when people use that word. It makes my blood boil. But in a fun way.

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 21, 2008 3:35 PM | Report abuse

And with all due respect to the good folks at E! Entertainment Television, the ability to walk a straight line down a runway, wearing custom-tailored next-to-nothings does not automatically equal sexy...>1=28103

*rolling my eyes at the lack of distaff Boodlers on the list*


Posted by: Scottynuke | November 21, 2008 3:40 PM | Report abuse

Bc, so sorry for your loss. I'm sure you'll be the best hot-food server ever to hit the funeral scene.

Yes, context matters.
Classic examples from the Princess Bride:


"...As you wish."


Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 21, 2008 3:43 PM | Report abuse

And that's why your wife loves you, S'nuke. Although you should really have put her name in there too ;).

And yes... to certain eyes, she does look kind of like an over-oiled plastic barbie with a spray-on tan, doesn't she? You can just hear the silicone pop as she moves.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 21, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

NukeSpouse's reasons remain a mystery to me, Wilbrod, but I don't mind...

And of course, she's the only member of a very special list that I am the sole judge of. :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | November 21, 2008 3:52 PM | Report abuse

The TierneyLab article calls the "directed-energy weapon" a laser, but I suspect it fires microwaves, not visible or IR radiation. Short wavelengths run too much risk of scattering at intensities that could blind people. One of the things that was not clear to me from the article -- does this device remotely detonate the explosive, or does it remotely destroy the electronics controlling the device? If the latter, it still leaves the danger of relatively primitive devices, like a pressure pad in the roadway that closes a contact on a simple analog firing circuit.

I read through the comments to Tierney. I would say that about 1/3rd of his commenters fit the expression that has become my own personal cliché: "they don't think too hard." They don't read too well, or too completely, either. Most of them were horrified at the development of a way to kill people at a distance, or maybe incinerate them. Apparently, these people are visitors from a peaceful world without guns, or air-dropped napalm, or incendiary bombs, or...

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 21, 2008 3:59 PM | Report abuse

Good stuff, RD and Ivansmom.

Mudge, can a pronoun be a cliché? I got a "one of these things is not like the others" reaction. What do you personally (sorry, but see, "you" is ambiguous) say for second person plural in a context where the distinction needed to be made? (I'm becoming entirely too predictable in what I react to, but I just can't help myself.)

Actually, an interesting question (to me, anyway): all second person plural pronouns in English are "non-standard," but it's my impression that pretty much every native Southerner uses "y'all" (though many may learn to avoid it in regionally mixed company), whereas "youse," "yinz," etc., are much more restricted by social class. I don't have enough experience with those other forms to say for sure, though. Would y'all agree with this observation?

Posted by: -bia- | November 21, 2008 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Hey to all. It's been a weird kinda day, but I was able to get some stuff done. Still waiting to see snow flurries, but *alas* apparently I need to wait some more.

I agree with all of those horrible trite phrases -- especially awesome. It seems that "amazing" is the new awesome, as well. Very recently I used the word "amazing" completely in context, and yet I felt really miserable afterwards -- as if I should have been able to come up with a brand spanking new unique word.

Sorry you're under the weather, Martooni. If this is the respiratory "cold" thing you've got and you're all stuffed up, try some really hot soup with as much Tabasco sauce as you can stand poured into it. That'll blast those airways and sinuses open, I guarantee ya! Holistic medicine can work, I tell ya.

I hope the entire length, breadth and perimeterth of Boodledom has a nice weekend.

Posted by: firsttimeblogger | November 21, 2008 4:36 PM | Report abuse

SCC: needs to be made

Posted by: -bia- | November 21, 2008 4:39 PM | Report abuse

Available for a limited time at the Miami Herald website, a short video of the Rock Bottom Remainders, introduced by Dave Barry and Carl Hiaasen:

Posted by: kbertocci | November 21, 2008 4:50 PM | Report abuse

For sinus-clearing, I favor the hottest of Chinese mustard on a good spring roll or egg roll.

Regional alternative: sushi with plenty of fresh wasabi.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 21, 2008 4:55 PM | Report abuse

kb, who's the sax player?

Posted by: -bia- | November 21, 2008 5:10 PM | Report abuse

I think y'all implies friendliness, bias. I use it now and then and I'm a transplanted Southerner (and even how south I am might be disputed).

Youse guys sounds like a cliche from Guys and Dolls... it's associated with second or third generation immigrants of a particular era in the 20th century (so, yes, class, but not in a broad sense).

If you want to be formal with your y'alls, I suppose you could say "You all."

The old form of you, singular was "thou."

And thou wilst get lots of odd looks unless thou hast a reputation for being an old-fashioned eccentric, in which case, thou art overmuch used to curious eyes.

I will of course defer to the esteemed locution expert here from Fluffydelia.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 21, 2008 5:11 PM | Report abuse

A little food for boodle thought as we head into the weekend. I'm hiding in my office, composing myself a bit because my eyes are all teary. I praised a kid yesterday (well earned), and he came into our after school program just now still walking on air.

See y'all later, like after work, or whatever, you know...

Posted by: frostbitten1 | November 21, 2008 5:11 PM | Report abuse

>>"they don't think too hard." They don't read too well, or too completely, either.

Science Tim, that reminds me of the great Ted Williams line: If you don't think too good, don't think too much.

Posted by: -pj- | November 21, 2008 5:16 PM | Report abuse

Yay Frosti! Positive feedback is a wonderful tool.

Dr. Bia, I agree about y'all. More formally and upscale, it may be you all, but Southerners are the only English speakers with a real second person plural.

Posted by: slyness | November 21, 2008 5:21 PM | Report abuse

bia, the sax player is one of the real musicians in the band (the other one is the drummer) - and they introduce him with a funny name, so we don't know who he is. He is really good, and a pleasure to listen to. kb and I ran into him a couple times Sunday - and probably should have grabbed him and asked his name - but we didn't. I'm glad they got the turkey vulture shot at the beginning of the video.

I think you're right about yunz. In western PA, where I grew up, people who used it were less educated, lower on the socio-economic scale. I hate the sound of it, so I adopted y'all much later in life.

Posted by: seasea | November 21, 2008 5:21 PM | Report abuse

Ah, yes, Wilbrod, you're right to remind me about thou vs. you. If I had remembered Mudge's many centuries of life, I would have realized that he doesn't need to bother with these newfangled pronouns -- he can just keep that nice neat distinction from his Elizabethan youth. (Mudge, how old were you when you were hanging around with Shakespeare?)

I earn my nerd points by getting irritated when people mess up "hast" and "hath."

Posted by: -bia- | November 21, 2008 5:28 PM | Report abuse

I haven't been to the supermarket since returning from Japan Tuesday evening (a raid on Whole Foods in Orlando doesn't count). The navels might indeed be somewhat late. The citrus industry has standards about sweetness so no unripe fruit reaches the market.

I would never have signed up for the Japan trip had I known that I'd get the urge tup redo the antiquated kitchen, then find out the roof needed replacing, then set a retirement date just before the stock market crashed. I'll be fixing lots of low-carb potatoes and lentils in the new kitchen.

For all of that, the Japan tour, organized for the Portland, Oregon Japanese Garden by Azumano Travel, was a marvel and a genuine bargain. It was probably worth going just to see two splendid hot spring spa hotels (both with traditional Japanese rooms) and enjoy their meals.

Lots of maples in gardens were in perfect red color--quite amazing for a visit to coincide with the trees. The most impressive of all was the three-hundred year old maple of the Hori Garden near the castle town of Tsuwano. The town itself has old samurai houses and a famed Zen temple.

I was impressed at the passion for vegetable and gardening in rural areas. There must be battles over who produces the best daikon radishes. Rural houses also tend to have persimmon trees, and no one seems to harvest all the fruit, which hang golden on the barren branches.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | November 21, 2008 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Wikipedia says the sax player is Erasmo Paulo...still sounds like a made up name to me.

Oh, and Amy Tan is in the blond wig, Scott Turow has the hot pink wig.

Posted by: seasea | November 21, 2008 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Hast and hath are tricky. It's Shakespeare's fault for writing with a lisp.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 21, 2008 5:31 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the info, seasea. I was going to be very impressed if such a good musician was also a published author. Of course, here on the Boodle we're accustomed to multi-talented people (take Martooni, for example), but I don't expect to run into them in the real world.

frosti, that's great. I'm going to take it as a reminder to be on the lookout for chances to give deserved praise.

Posted by: -bia- | November 21, 2008 5:40 PM | Report abuse

More seriously, I took the subway to Tokyo's busy Shibuya neighborhood, where a vast mural by Taro Okamoto (who of course I'd never heard of) was unveiled this Monday. As the story below notes, it's almost impossible to view the mural and not think of Picasso's Guernica.

The mural looks as though it and the busy transit station corridor had been designed for each other, especially inasmuch as it's essential to walk by the mural to see it in full.,8599,1859986,00.html

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | November 21, 2008 5:43 PM | Report abuse


I buy Florida oranges, usually navels, from the Lion's Club here in the DC area. Their first sale was supposed to be last Saturday but it got postponed until tomorrow. So it sounds like they are a little late this year.

Posted by: -pj- | November 21, 2008 5:44 PM | Report abuse

Not a great list, but I worked 16 hours today. Will some kind person take pity and fax me dinner? Thenk you (Steve Martin's pronunciation comes to mind).

1. Are we having fun yet

2. Good morning, sunshine

3. Back in the day

4. Leverage (used as a verb)

5. /insert my company's new branding phrase here/

6. Dog and pony show

Posted by: -dbG- | November 21, 2008 5:53 PM | Report abuse

Good evening all, trying to choose my words carefully as having backboodle I realize I am guilty of overusing all those cliches.

My pet peeve - the expression "talk to a insert subject".

Dave, has the sweetness for oranges been increased over the last few decades - it seems the naval oranges my mom bought, and I consumed in large quantities where much tarter and juicier than current varieties - or is that just a faulty memory.

I still dream about those oranges - on some days when I would stay home sick I would consume close to a bag of oranges, sliced in quarters - heavenly.

Posted by: dmd2 | November 21, 2008 6:01 PM | Report abuse

Show me a pony!

Show me a pony!


Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 21, 2008 6:03 PM | Report abuse

Dave, I'm glad your Japan trip went well. Probably a good thing you booked it before the stock market crash, etc - otherwise you may have been too prudent to go. That's quite a mural.

When I studied Japanese, we spent a lot of time learning set phrases - things you say in certain situations, like introducing yourself in a business situation. It gave me a new appreciation for that sort of thing, because it helps to make people feel comfortable and break the ice, in a way. So, what we sometimes decry as the emptiness of phrases like "how are you" and "Have a nice day" became more like that to me.

One of the authors at the book fair wrote a book about the annoying trendy phrases - "at the end of the day", etc. It is amazing (no, maybe interesting is what I mean) how suddenly everyone seems to be using the same phrases. This author was reminded by a Latin teacher that some of the phrases he found ridiculous were rhetorical devices used by Cicero no less.

Posted by: seasea | November 21, 2008 6:06 PM | Report abuse

Ah, language.

Succeding generations may put new wheels on it, upgrade the seats, even remodel the engine, change the fuel, and it still is the same beat-up jalopy somehow.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 21, 2008 6:32 PM | Report abuse

Glad you had a good trip. Japan in the fall must be gorgeous.

And real southerners know the usage distinction between "y'all" and "all y'all".

Posted by: yellojkt | November 21, 2008 6:35 PM | Report abuse

Is it "thou hast" and "he hath?"

I was thinking about how people always recommend something to consume to make a cold better. And I've never found anything to consume to make a cold better. Once I really thought I was getting a cold and I took some echinacea. It stopped in its tracks. Other times, it did nothing. It's the only anecdotal evidence I ever experienced. I seriously doubt it actually works. I don't think there is anything to consume that makes a cold better. Avoid starvation, eat healthy food. Hydrate. That half-gallon of chicken soup will minimize any borderline malnutrition or H2O issues, or salt balance for that matter. That won't cure the cold, it will just keep you from getting sicker.

I've tried a million things. A roast beef, a pot of fresh homemade mashed potatoes, nothing but veggies, grains, seafood, hot peppers, kimchee, Mexican, Chinese, cabbage, even fasting. It makes no difference.

No, when it comes to advice, we must move off the beaten track.

Sleep. I advise forcefully pushing the concept of acquiring 36 hours sleep if you have a cold coming on. I'm serious: repair to bed, and literally don't leave. Your pupose upon awakening should be, how am I going to go back to sleep? And then pursue that goal. Make it happen.

This sort of wellness philosophy is shocking and radical to our modern go-go culture. And dangerous to the Corpocracy. Good. Modern go-go culture should be challenged.

And it will probably turn out to be the best remedy for a cold.

Posted by: Jumper1 | November 21, 2008 6:52 PM | Report abuse

I agree, Jumper. If you can sleep for the coughing, that is.

But if you think chicken soup doesn't bring a person off his deathbed then you've never had good old industrial-strength chicken soup designed to heal.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 21, 2008 7:12 PM | Report abuse

Well, I remember when the advice for a cold was "rest and drink plenty of fluids" when rest meant, like, sleep and don't work, not just complain as you rush to your next meeting, and fluids did not include several large buckets of speciality coffee a day, but actual, you know, hydrating water.

So Jumper, I don't see that you're so much off the beaten track as leaving a newly-broken trail and heading back to the extremely well-worn Roman road of tradition.

Posted by: Yoki | November 21, 2008 7:27 PM | Report abuse

DotC - I've met George Azumano, founder of Azumano Travel. Great guy and terrific tour company. He helped to found the Oregon Nikke Endowment Center in Portland. Beautiful museum.

Posted by: MiddleofthePacific | November 21, 2008 7:31 PM | Report abuse

*renames the Via Appia "Via Jumperia" *

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 21, 2008 7:40 PM | Report abuse

Good one, Wilbrod!

Posted by: Yoki | November 21, 2008 7:50 PM | Report abuse

I concur with Jumper. I don't take cold remedies. When I feel a cold coming on, I drink lemon tea to up my vitamin C intake, suck on vitamin C drops to soothe my scratchy throat, drink lots of fluids, sleep. I don't usually drink orange juice (outside of Florida), but when I had a cold recently, my husband fixed me some, and it really helped me feel better. And now I sort of crave it, especially when people talk about it. Like earlier today.

Posted by: seasea | November 21, 2008 7:54 PM | Report abuse

I'm with you, seasea. The two times I took over-the-counter cold drugs, I felt both sick with the cold and drugged with the drugs. The drugs did nothing for the cold, just added misery on misery.

So I'm back to rest and fluids!

Posted by: Yoki | November 21, 2008 9:12 PM | Report abuse

HSUS tried to link Petland, which does have a health guarantee and buys only from USDA licensed breeders, to "puppy mills."

Their reply:

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 21, 2008 9:20 PM | Report abuse

I am being held captive in my kitchen by three gentlemen, who have the tv tuned to the 'Wild' (not that kind of wild guys) channel. Right now we are to learning the art of calling ducks.

Please save me.

Posted by: --dr-- | November 21, 2008 9:33 PM | Report abuse

DR, grading papers like a crazy woman, but let's watch

Knitting Pretty
Yarn Barn
Stitch Witcherie
Sheep Dreams

Posted by: CollegequaParkian | November 21, 2008 9:37 PM | Report abuse

There is a 50 mile race in Washington county MD tomorrow,the JFK 50, we have many guests staying here tonight,start times are 5 and 7 am,part of the race is along the AT on south mountain and the C&O canal. The forecast low tonight is 21 with 15-25 mph winds.Might be a little chilly.But I guess you warm up after the first couple of miles..Everyone starting at 5am must wear headgear with lights.

I am sleeping in tomorrow.....

Posted by: greenwithenvy | November 21, 2008 10:21 PM | Report abuse

Poor dr, they are going to bleat like deers soon, it's in the genes. The VLP stared down a 6-points last week. Dumb deer. Please report on the meteor.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 21, 2008 10:21 PM | Report abuse

I've a sure fire cure for the common cold
so gather round and you'll be told
option one is to have some drinks
or if it's warm, you can hit the links
option three is to sit and read
option four is to kiss a Swede
drinking fluid is another way
or take vitamin C the live long day
Whichever you want of these several ways
You have to do it three whole days

Posted by: engelmann | November 21, 2008 10:24 PM | Report abuse

gwe-Mr. F has run the JFK 50, twice. As a taxpayer I think this should encourage the Army to think twice about relying upon his good judgment.

3F here right now, but at least we saw the sun today and I can stay under the toasty warm covers as late as I like in the morning. A Saturday with no urgent activities on the schedule is a fine thing, even finer to have a lazy Friday evening to spend in anticipation.

Toodles boodle and sweet dreams.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | November 21, 2008 10:31 PM | Report abuse

Oh engelmann, I'll kiss some swedes. Which cheek is a valid option four?

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 21, 2008 10:31 PM | Report abuse

I've never been to Sweden, but based on my limited experience of Norway Mr. engelmann I'm willing to kiss any female Swede you may offer to my lips.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 21, 2008 10:42 PM | Report abuse

For a cold, I like salty chicken soup with *lots* of garlic. I don't know if it helps anything, but you can taste it and it's nice and warm and pleasant. It also guarantees that you get to enjoy your physical misery in peace, because of the garlic. I like to follow it with Thera-flu, night-time edition. Clears the sinuses and, more important, knocks me out almost instantly so that I can do my recovery while sleeping instead of having to stay awake for all that tedious sniffling, coughing, puking, etc. I find this works equally well when somebody else has the cold. Lets me sleep soundly.

Posted by: ScienceTim | November 21, 2008 10:50 PM | Report abuse

I've met one of those three, and much as I would love to save you, dr., I don't really believe you are in need of saving.


Posted by: Yoki | November 21, 2008 10:53 PM | Report abuse

Had the ladies over to play Bunko tonight, but since we only had six instead of the required 12 to play, we sat around my kitchen table and ate the yummy food and gabbed the evening away. Fun.

As my mother always said, the best way to get the house clean is to invite the ladies over. Some overdue living room maintenance was taken care of today. A year after having the house painted, the pictures are finally up on the living room wall.

SonofCarl... great poem. Thanks for the advice. Jumper... you too. I find the best way to avoid a cold is to wash my hands. Every time I walk into the house I wash my hands. Every time I do anything, I wash my hands. It's pretty amazing how well that works.

Posted by: -TBG- | November 21, 2008 10:58 PM | Report abuse

Not touching your eyes or nose with germy hands is a really good prevention of colds-- and one hard to avoid in runny nose weather.

...On a separate note, I want to murder the architect who designed this room. The window has insufficient insulation and opposite it is a friggin' closet. That means the bed must be near the window in some configuration, ditto any other furniture. I'm having serious cold pain in my left side as I type.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 21, 2008 11:11 PM | Report abuse

Sounds like you may need some heavy drapes, Wilbrod. Or you've got to start letting Wilbrodog up on the bed.

Posted by: -TBG- | November 21, 2008 11:19 PM | Report abuse

I've been telling the gnome that the computer chair should be a loveseat all along!


Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 22, 2008 12:28 AM | Report abuse

Re Scotty’s 3:40pm. Karolina Kurkova has not belly button.

Posted by: rainforest1 | November 22, 2008 2:42 AM | Report abuse

GM started the year with 7 leased jets? And Ford has 5? Why do they need so many jets?

Most cars in this country are either Japanese, Korean or European. For many years, the only American car trying to make a presence has been Ford. The last 2 years, I’ve seen mid-size Chevrolet on the road. I don’t know how it fair compared with the others but I quite like the look of the car.

Posted by: rainforest1 | November 22, 2008 2:56 AM | Report abuse

I was happy to see lots of Fords in Taipei almost two years ago. I even spotted a few in southern Hokkaido last week. The only Chevy was a Trail Blazer with a lighted license plate--diplomatic or military?

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | November 22, 2008 3:14 AM | Report abuse

Why 7 planes? Vice-presidents. I don't know where they stand now but about 20 years ago there were more than 200 persons holding the title of VP at GM. A friend got hired by GM back in the late eighties and he found that factoid hilarious. He fled the staid corporate culture a couple of years later. As a "paint engineer" his tasks were 95% enforcing GM's procedures and paper trail on the suppliers and 5% actually ensuring the paint was any good. He got tired of that.

We have dipped well below -10C/12F tis morning. Brrrrrr.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 22, 2008 7:33 AM | Report abuse

And good morning boodle.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 22, 2008 7:36 AM | Report abuse

God loves us so much more than we can imagine through Him that died for all, Jesus Christ.

Morning, friends. I've been up for some time now. It is really, really, cold outside. All we need is the "white stuff", and we would have a picture of winter wonderland. I'm not hoping for that.

Slyness, on the news this morning, the youth from Myers Park were sleeping outdoors. Is this a fund raiser for the homeless or something else?

I went to the soup kitchen yesterday, and they had a turkey sandwich that was so big, it was a meal in itself. Nice hot bowl of chicken soup to go with that, and the finish up was apple pie. One of my middle school teachers was serving up the soup. I was so happy to see her. She hugged me and kissed me. A really great afternoon. A lot of folks getting served there. I also met one of the first student I started working with after finishing school. He said he didn't finish, so I offered to help if he wanted to start back.

Hope all of you are warm and toasty. And if suffering from a cold, I hope you get to feeling better. Have a great weekend.

Mudge, Scotty, Martooni, and all, good, good, morning.*waving*

The g-girl has lost two teeth in the front. She shows it to everybody that will look. My grandson pulled the first one out, and she lost the other one at school. I told her she's going to have to gum her food. I know I'm prejudice, but she looks so cute with that gap in the front. Her little friend has a gap too. They're adorable. Hopefully, my grandsons will be here for Thanksgiving. I do hope so. I've missed them terribly.

Stay warm gang.

Posted by: cmyth4u | November 22, 2008 7:46 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, all. Hey Cassandra!

Thirteen degrees and clear in the high country this morning. Mr. T has expressed an interest in going to the farmers market, so I'll have to get him up in a little while. The local farmers market normally runs April-October but they are having a couple of special sessions for Thanksgiving.

Cassandra, looks like the Episcopal church in Myers Park held the event to show young members what it's like to be homeless.

I volunteered a few times at the local shelter when it was starting up about 20 years ago. Now it has a permanent home and a professional staff so they don't have to rely on volunteers so much. In the winter, there aren't enough beds to go around, of course, so local churches step into the breach. My church hosts a group of men on Friday nights between the first of December and the middle of March, providing transportation, meals, a place to shower, and mattresses. A couple of weeks ago, we hosted a group of homeless women for an entire week. It's an essential ministry.

Posted by: slyness | November 22, 2008 8:07 AM | Report abuse

Your church sounds like it does good works, Slyness. Cassandra... you too. That's what it's all about, isn't it?

Good morning folks! Beautiful, crisp 29° morning here. The house is nice and quiet and I'm enjoying every bit of it.

I heard last night that our farmers' market will start operating year-round next year. Don't know what that means in January and February, but it will be nice.

I'm not sure what I think about Clinton as Sec'y of State. Sounds good to me, but a little odd. Surprised that she'd want the job, but will be glad to see her part of the Obama administration (I just love writing those words).

Posted by: -TBG- | November 22, 2008 8:28 AM | Report abuse


It is an essential ministry. And it seems to be even more so during this economic upheaveal with job losses and homes going into foreclosures. I've never actually slept outdoors, although I have slept in a car. And the houses we lived in during my childhood, one could see the outdoors through the floor, but it did have a roof, and my mother, bless her heart, always tried to keep a fire. Slyness, if I had serious money, homeless and hungry people would have an advocate. They have me for an advocate now, just a broke one.

Have fun at the farmer's market. I love those places. All the sights and smells.

Posted by: cmyth4u | November 22, 2008 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, Boodle.

Haven't had time to backboodlle and emails been piling up. Sigh.

Wishing everyone a good Saturday. :o)

Posted by: Braguine | November 22, 2008 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, all.

Thanks for the kind words, folks. The services were very touching, and entirely appropriate to the situation. I was talking about it with my Mom and my Uncle as we moved from the chapel to the gravesite, amd we agreed that there something familiar and comforting to us (raised Roman Catholic, but with many friends of the Jewish faith) about a Rabbi conducting services in Hebrew.

Important words and meaningful occasions - occasions of heart, mind, and spirit - can transcend language, I think.


Posted by: -bc- | November 22, 2008 8:53 AM | Report abuse

New Kit! Pictures!

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | November 22, 2008 9:03 AM | Report abuse

TBG, as far as HRC as SoS goes, I understand the reasons for the offer from the Obama Admin, and I understand her reasons for accepting (not a bad gig if you had your heart set on being Chief Executive), though I think she would do better to stay in the House. As a friend pointed out to me, someone's going to need to take the mantle from Teddy Kennedy to provide long term leadership for the Dems, and she'd be perfect for it.

On a related note, I see that the Obamas are going to send their daughters to Sidwell Friends school:


My money's on his daughters going to Sidwell Friends as Chelsea Clinton did, but they may decide something different. SF is used to handling the kinds of special needs that a President's children have.


Posted by: -bc- | November 7, 2008 3:57 PM"


Posted by: -bc- | November 22, 2008 9:07 AM | Report abuse

Yeah, I agreed with you back then, O Prophetic bc. ;).

I'm glad the Obama liked what they saw of the school, and it sounds like the girls will already know some kids there when they start, which is much better than you usually expect with an cross-country move.

It still strikes me as odd, her being Secretary of State.

The only explanation I can think of is that Hillary really did want this gig in particular, which is all to the good.

I'd like Obama to pick cabinet members who are experienced AND passionate about their assignment. Hillary'll have a lot of jet lag in this job; something she knew as a first lady, of course.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | November 22, 2008 4:28 PM | Report abuse

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