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Bad to the bone in Miami


So you know I went to Miami on vacation. Here I am on a little treasure hunt on the beach behind the Delano. I'm scoring bracelets, earrings, coins, pet ID tags, bullets, orthodontic fixtures, medical instruments, artificial limbs, all kinds of good stuff. I don't go anywhere in Miami without my metal detector. I land at MIA and shout: "Gear up!!!" This place is detritus heaven. I'll never forget the time I found a vintage 1978 Craftsman socket wrench that to this very day I wear around my neck as my signature bling.


Here's my hotel, which, though attractive from the outside, had a dismaying resemblance on the inside to a public latrine. Just naaaaaaasty. No privacy. People coming and going. The stories I could tell.


Rare action shot of sunshine careening into palm trees. The sun is so fierce in South Florida you sometimes have to dive behind a parked car or a bush. As a precautionary measure I always use SPF-trillion which was specifically designed by Oppenheimer to withstand the radiation of the Trinity test.


Gov. Crist has busted the state budget adding turquoise dye to the ocean.


Every guy living on a boat at Dinner Key thinks he's a character in a Hiaasen novel. Which seems so much better than facing the truth about being borderline homeless. My father once lived on a houseboat. Then he moved to an apartment. He kind of ignored the houseboat. One day it sank. I think it's still at the bottom of a marina in Tarpon Springs. But I'm saving all this for my (Hiaasenesque) novel.


I remember when the Cardozo was the only place on Ocean Drive where a "hip" person could get a drink. "South Beach" was basically a beautiful slum. The hotels were full of retirees from Brooklyn and a smattering of drifters and refugees. The mix of the geriatric and the desperate was combustible and tragic: Every day the police blotter (which I read dutifully as a cub reporter) was a serial narrative of little old ladies knocked to the pavement for the feeble treasure of their purses. But I digress: The important fact is that I drove a Cadillac. And that it was a convertible. And that it was red. And that it was roughly the size of a standard Miami Beach hotel room. I can never quite remember if it was an Eldorado or a Coupe deVille, though I believe the former and there may not have been a dime's worth of difference.

Significantly, it was bad to the bone. Which meant that I was personally and irrefutably bad to the bone. One night, new in town, I drove up to the Cardozo to meet some friends for a drink. It was sublime: You had your palms swaying in the breeze, and the crashing surf just beyond that (they hadn't yet widened the beach in those days), and there I was, making a big entrance in the awesome car. But when I hopped out of the Cadillac, I was greeted with hoots and jeers and raucous laughter. They were laughing at me! What's so funny, I said. And someone broke the news: "You look like a little boy behind the wheel." An epic FAIL. I knew it was true. I might as well have showed up wearing a Roy Rogers cowboy outfit. (This explains why I now drive a Honda Accord.)

By Joel Achenbach  |  March 9, 2010; 10:00 AM ET
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Next: Porch Season 2010!!!!!


Thanks for the warmth and sunshine, Mr. A!

Posted by: MsJS | March 9, 2010 10:22 AM | Report abuse

Ah, the beach! Come on spring, I am jonezin' for summer.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | March 9, 2010 10:22 AM | Report abuse

JA, from the picture, I take it you found a shovel? How'd somebody lose that? And what's with naming the building 14th Street? Is 13th Street a restaurant? 12th a grocery store? I don't get it....

Don't hang out in Miami too long. We don't want you coming back thinking black socks with sandals is a cool look for ya. And stay away from the candy dish at old people's homes...those aren't mints; they're coumadin and nitroglycerin tabs.

Posted by: LostInThought | March 9, 2010 10:26 AM | Report abuse

It is an undoubted fact. Successful ragtop Caddy piloting requires a certain stature. Think Nolte in "48 Hours". Think Eastwood in "Pink Cadillac". Think Swayze in "To Wong Foo Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar".

Posted by: kguy1 | March 9, 2010 10:27 AM | Report abuse

Love the turquoise water pic Joel. I always look forward to your photo-kits, your captions are always superb.

Posted by: badsneakers | March 9, 2010 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Joel, the real question is: Is South Beach still a topless beach?

(I haven't been there myself, but Mr. T reported getting an eyeful when he was there [on business] some years ago.)

Posted by: slyness | March 9, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Aretha in her pink caddy in Freeway of Love.

Posted by: LostInThought | March 9, 2010 10:40 AM | Report abuse

A friend once told me her husband had scheduled their rental car for Florida - he proudly told her he had ordered a compact, as opposed to their usual sub-compact. She actually (briefly) doubted their marriage could last as she explained to him why he must change it to a red convertible land cruiser. He willingly complied - he's a good guy, though slow.

Those pictures make me dissatisfied with cloudy and 52 degrees. More Snowmageddon pictures!

Posted by: Wheezy11 | March 9, 2010 10:40 AM | Report abuse

But did the Caddie have a Deadhead sticker?

Posted by: frostbitten1 | March 9, 2010 10:45 AM | Report abuse

I'll bet Mudge is thinking more Travis McGee and John D. McDonald than Hiaasen.


Posted by: DLDx | March 9, 2010 10:46 AM | Report abuse

No one... absolutely NO ONE looks as cool driving a car as Patrick Swayze in "To Wong Foo Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar."

Posted by: -TBG- | March 9, 2010 10:53 AM | Report abuse

But of course the definitive Caddy scene must be the title sequence from "Undercover Brother"-

Posted by: kguy1 | March 9, 2010 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Yeah, Crockett and Tubbs took one look at you in that Caddy and decided it was time to book for the cigarette boat and make waves somewhere else.

Posted by: ebtnut | March 9, 2010 10:57 AM | Report abuse

I loved your description of Cisco's in Austin. The fellows sitting at the table inside Cisco's were trying to wave us, on the sidewalk around 9 a.m. Friday, inside. But, as I mentioned previously, we had just eaten a Mexican-style breakfast at Perico's just several blocks from our own home the previous Sunday. I had struck up a conversation, shortly after 4:30 p.m. Thursday, with the woman behind us in line at the Heilemann-Halperin signing table, asking for her recommendations for a breakfast dining spot. She's the one, after I had mentioned Kerbey Lane, who told me there was one on S. Lamar, so we didn't have to travel to the one closer to the Joe Stack IRS site. She also mentioned Magnolia House, which we found on S. Congress when we leaving Austin around 4:15 p.m., beating by half an hour, I think, Friday rush hour traffic. Looking forward to the continuation of your story.

Joel's new Kit has been laughing many times.

What I tried to post yesterday:
Shortened: Really appreciated kguy's post about the Aadeny Awards. And:

Jim, whoever you are (a Kit or two ago), thanks for the update on Bakersfield's Basque restaurants. I have a hunch I'm going to play. You wouldn't happen to be living up Santa Cruz way, say, in the hills outside of? I do miss the Basque pickled tongue. Just a hunch or crazy guess.

LiT, good catch on Catherine Robb's age. Wiki says she was born 1970.

More, later--as I've some things to do, on the Texas State Cemetery. There are some really interesting folks interred there. I think I liked the oldest (not in age, mind you) the best.

Posted by: laloomis | March 9, 2010 11:01 AM | Report abuse

I was badly mudged last boodle, but it's not worth reposting.

I only made it as far south as North Miami Beach once, which is to Miami Beach what Yonkers is to Soho. We stayed at a 30s era Art Deco that had only recently gotten it's second coat of paint. It was very well known among the German travel agent industry to the point that all the hand-taped signs in the elevator ran 20-30 letters long and schnitzel was a staple on the breakfast menu.

Posted by: yellojkt | March 9, 2010 11:02 AM | Report abuse

SCC: MOre later about the Texas State Cemetery, as I've things that must be accomplished. *l*

Posted by: laloomis | March 9, 2010 11:03 AM | Report abuse

Wheezy, you got 52? We only got 41.

*grump grump*

I always wondered why "14th Street" adorned that structure, Mr. A. A friend told me it was because, after a day of frying one's skin and brains at the beach, people needed some sense of where on that vast stretch of sand they were.

Posted by: MsJS | March 9, 2010 11:06 AM | Report abuse

Ivansmom (and others who have read the first and maybe second Millennium book by Steig Larsson) -- I'm almost into the last 100 pages of the third book. IMHO, the third book is pretty good. Yes, I know what's coming, and while there are a few red herrings (I *love* herring, especially matjes herring), but I think he has redeemed himself from the second book, which I didn't like so much. But I'm gonna be sad to finish the series. Pretty good read.

Posted by: -ftb- | March 9, 2010 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Achenbach: Sunlight NEVER "careens."

Posted by: | March 9, 2010 11:11 AM | Report abuse

Not only can it careen, it can also strike, assault, and attack. I've also known it to saute, broil, and broast. Mostly on my skin.

Posted by: yellojkt | March 9, 2010 11:15 AM | Report abuse

On our drive Thursday to Austin, the sky was a bird's egg-blue, and the ribbon of the Guadalupe River was a vibrant aquamarine-green, as were all the farm ponds around Blanco.

Not such good weather on Friday. Makes Miami look terribly inviting.

On our way home Friday, we stopped in Blanco, one of Texas' lavender capitals, so that I could buy more Lavender Body Butter, and browse other items in Krieger's. There is a cafe that adjoins the pottery shop, and it fulfilled our other desire: a cup of hot, fresh coffee.

I learned from the woman behind the Krieger's counter that "The Unlikely Lavender Queen" author Jeannie Ralston, who, along with her National Geographic photographer husband, had sold their home in central Mexico but had kept the guest house, and were in the process of determining where in the United States to settle--either back in Texas or closer to her family in Tennessee. A next chapter in this writer's life?

Posted by: laloomis | March 9, 2010 11:17 AM | Report abuse

Me at Slip F-18 many, many years ago:

Posted by: yellojkt | March 9, 2010 11:18 AM | Report abuse

Oh, I don't know 'bout that. Stick some highly dense masses near its path, and you can make sunlight follow some pretty wild trajectories.

Posted by: bobsewell | March 9, 2010 11:20 AM | Report abuse

So glad you found some sunshine in the Sunshine State, Joel. It's been amazingly cold around here this winter but the warm weather has finally arrived, I believe--it was 75 degrees as the sun set last night.

The metal-detector gag reminds me that I've been waiting for an opportunity to talk about my weird hobby, collecting money off the streets/sidewalks. This year I'm keeping a record of all the money I find--mostly just around my neighborhood, on my daily walks and jogs. In January, I collected $1.46. February was much slower, but year to date my total is $1.90. I get an inordinate amount of pleasure from finding a penny, now that it's my hobby. And if I find a quarter, look out, it makes my week. [I've also picked up a couple of credit cards but those I either return to the owner or destroy, so they don't count as money.]

Also want to mention to any Boodlers who are tempted by the Miami Beach photos, there's always an open invitation to visit for a literary weekend in November...this year it's Nov. 19 - 21. Mark your calendar now.

Posted by: kbertocci | March 9, 2010 11:21 AM | Report abuse

A lavender farm on the Olympic peninsula of Washington State:

Posted by: yellojkt | March 9, 2010 11:32 AM | Report abuse

We started a family tradition of donating found money to charity. Began at a local carnival when one of the kids found 20 dollars on the jungle gym nearby. We tried asking if it belonged to anyone, and, amazingly, several people said yes! Ended up putting it in the fireman's boot at a nearby booth. Whoever actually finds it gets to pick the charity. Last year one of the daughters found a $100 bill! A local homeless shelter her school does volunteer work was pleased.

All of our change, found or otherwise, goes into a huge, exceedingly ugly 70's orange glass jar in my bedroom, which stands 4.5 feet tall. We think it must have about $300 in it now. When it's full it will be family mini-vacation money.

Posted by: Wheezy11 | March 9, 2010 11:37 AM | Report abuse

First YJ with bodyshots, now laloomis with body butter. Can I play? I once dated a bodybuilder.

Posted by: LostInThought | March 9, 2010 11:40 AM | Report abuse

jnrentz, I think Joel uses "careens" because he's never quite recovered from Observing the classic photon double-slit experiment or all of the gravitiational lensing/deep field astronomical talk he was exposed to at the AAS meetings in January.

And Joel - do all you Herald vets want to write Hiaasenesque novels? Must admit - Dave Barry's "Big Trouble" was a decent crack at it. Plus, it was optioned into a movie... which, now that I think about it, made his Hiaasensquerade finanically lucrative.


Posted by: -bc- | March 9, 2010 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Read my mind, DLD.

True story: my parents retired to Florida and lived for several years in a trailer park just south of Tarpon Springs. I was visiting them one Christmas circa 1980 or 81, and one day we went for a drive up to Tarpon Springs. And back then there really WAS a boat sunk at the marina there, a wood cruiser built somewhere in the 1930s -- couldn't see most of it, since it was sunk, but the transom was sticking up out of the water enough to tell me approximately what I was looking at. There was a guy hanging around who worked at the marina. I asked him, "What's the story with the sunken boat?" He said, "Oh, that. That's Charles Lingbergh's honeymoon boat. I think it was an Elco."

As it happened, I was one of perhaps five people in the entire world who knew for a fact that Charles Lindbergh's honeymoon boat was a 38-foot 1928 Elco Cruiser named "Mouette," and that she was renamed "Abel Hand" and at that moment undergoing a $300k (or more) restoration on Long Island, where she was now owned by an advertising executive. I knew this because the man who designed Mouette, Glen Tremaine, was a friend of mine who lived a bit further down the road in Clearwater, off Ulmerton Boulevard. Lindbergh had asked tremaine to customize the boat to change the twin berths to a single double berth, which he did. Tremaine and his boss, Irwin Chase, then took Lindbergh out on Newark Bay and taught him all about boating. (Lindbergh in 1928 knew almost nothing about the water; all he knew was he flew over top of it quite a lot, and figured it would be a good idea to learn about it, just in case. His honeymoon cruise became something of a legend among the 29 of us old codgers who give a hoot about such thing. See the Lindbergh chapter in vol. 3 of my four-volume history of Elco. When I finish the fricking thing.)

I didn't tell the boatyard guy he was full of crap; why bother. I suppose it made an interesting story to tell people.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | March 9, 2010 11:51 AM | Report abuse

My one superstition is that I believe it to be bad luck to not bother to pick up a coin.

Posted by: engelmann | March 9, 2010 11:52 AM | Report abuse

'careen' always makes me think of a related and luscious word:

carom noun 1.Billiards, Pool. a shot in which the cue ball hits two balls in succession.2.any strike and rebound, as a ball striking a wall and glancing off.

carom verb (used without object) make a strike and rebound.

1770–80; by false analysis of carambole (taken as carom ball) < F < Sp carambola, special use of fruit name

I want to have carambola salad for lunch. With frascati...we can pretend that the air is sensuous and caromming of our Audrey Hepburn cateye sun peepers....LiT has the cutest peep toe stack pumps....with her toes the dearest shade of tulip.....Yoki and Frosti both have navy cigarette slacks, showing that tall and short CAN use the same leg silhouette...Mudge is arriving late by boat; bc and scottie took the candy apple red caddie out for a spin....we have a tikibar in the back, under a hardy banana know, because error-is-error, with flynn brio....

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | March 9, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

Whoopies, mea culpa, curtsies, Uriah Heep-like overdone is the best part of


1779, from Sp. carombola "the red ball in billiards," originally an orange tropical Asian fruit supposed to resemble a red billiard ball, from Marathi (southern Indian) karambal. The verb is 1860, from the noun.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | March 9, 2010 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Careen: to bump into, or stagger out of control. But from the ancient nautical: to careen a ship was to deliberately beach it at high tide, and when the tide would roll out the ship would lie over on its side. This would allow work crews access to the side and bottom of the ship, so they could scrape off barnacles, re-caulk, repair, paint, etc., as necessary. Then when the tide came in, they'd flop the ship over onto the other side, and fix it, too. To a lay person this might give the appearance of an accidental, out-of-control process, hence the modern meaning. But in fact it was not out-of-control at all.

Careened a couple of old buckets in my day, I can tell you. Never saw so many barnacles in my whole life as the time we careened Georgie Anson's Centurion in the Philo-peens. You want to talk about being mussle-bound. Must have scraped that old b1tch for six weeks. She was a great ship, though.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | March 9, 2010 12:02 PM | Report abuse

Howdy. I'd like some of that beach about now. I like Oklahoma, but I miss oceans. [Of course, I'm sitting on potential waterfront property right now, if I play my cards right and enjoy an unnaturally long life span.]

Caddy convertible: Hunter S. Thompson. Fear and Loathing. Las Vegas, campaign trail, roaming buffalo.

I spent part of this morning with a teenage friend who is donating bone marrow to his sister. He's very matter-of-fact about it - he's a match, she needs it - but golly, what a fine, fine thing to do. That bone marrow sucking-out machine has some elaborate dials, tubes and pathways.

Posted by: Ivansmom | March 9, 2010 12:05 PM | Report abuse

I'm thinking...*drumming my fingers on the desltop*...Joel's dad's boat may have an historical connection to the oldest historical grave in the Texas State Cemetery and the at-one-time very waterlogged body buried there. *w*

Posted by: laloomis | March 9, 2010 12:18 PM | Report abuse

CP's "carom" derived from "carombola" sounds similar to "carambola", which is a tropical fruit, also called starfruit. They're bearing fruit in Miami right now.

I've been to Miami Beach just once, for the Everglades Coalition Conference. The Delano lobby is perfect. Who would've thought that glass curtains, the fabric sort that transmit light but provide a bit of privacy, would be glamorous? The Parmalat ice cream place on Lincoln Road was something you'd never, ever see in un-hip Orlando.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | March 9, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

Ivansmom -- brave boy there. Bone marrow donation can make for a rough time....a sort of serum sickness like the worst flu ever. So, give him some gold plated spurs from me for he general bon homie and practical love.

Mudge -- come and sit by me and keep on with boat talk. And, Yj, you can read the restaurant reviews outloud to us. I think that we can read and think and imagine food pleasures as fine as actually eating the stuff.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | March 9, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Engelmann, luck is all in the attitude (positive waves and all). I often see a proverbial lucky penny and think "nah, things are good, leave it for someone who needs it" and stroll on by.

Posted by: qgaliana | March 9, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

My parents are retired in Tarpon Springs and regularly go to the sponge docks for lunch or dinner.

Their favorite family-run restaurant, Plakas, bills itself as "the McDonalds of Greece" which does itself an extreme disservice since the food is fantastic.

The last time we went there, my parents split a single gyro. I went for the grouper sandwich, which is my favorite fish sandwich, but I'm beginning to feel guilty about it since groupers are and important part of the seabed as they are the beavers of the ocean.

Posted by: yellojkt | March 9, 2010 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Hope it's not too late for today's mojo delivery to NukeSis. Bummah.

Posted by: Raysmom | March 9, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

engelmann, you have a superstition? Not me. I merely have established habits and patterns of action clearly grounded in well-reasoned observation and belief.

Scuse me. I have to pick up that coin.

Posted by: Ivansmom | March 9, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse

Sending all my mojo to s'nuke's sister. Since it was previously sending it toward ending the phone conference I'm in, it may never end. But it's a good cause, so, worth it.

Posted by: -dbG- | March 9, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

yello-don't worry, according to the nearly yearly St. Pete Times undercover op it's probably not grouper anyway.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | March 9, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

La bama chairs out,
Dogs wearing shades and bright beads
Chasing flamingos.


Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | March 9, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

qg's rationale for passing a coin by is a good one, and that might work. As a card holding member of the ant community, I can say it won't be easy though.

It doesn't exactly come up a lot; I don't wear my glasses when I jog so getting overloaded with change is the least of my worries.

Posted by: engelmann | March 9, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of ships, Liz Cheney and her ilk need to be shipped off to a rehabilitation clinic somewhere, as Gene Robinson's great column this morning amply demonstrates:

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | March 9, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Wilbrodog, this dog got lucky and 'caught' one!

Posted by: MsJS | March 9, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Yanno, Mudge, when I read some of the questions posed to Eugene, I really fear for this country.

Posted by: Raysmom | March 9, 2010 1:36 PM | Report abuse

I know, Raysmom. His chat today is so discouraging, too. I sent in an "attaboy" but it probably won't get posted.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | March 9, 2010 1:55 PM | Report abuse

This from HuffPo-

"Responding to a caller who asked him where he would go for health care if Congress enacts reform, Limbaugh replied,

I don't know. I'll just tell you this, if this passes and it's five years from now and all that stuff gets implemented -- I am leaving the country. I'll go to Costa Rica."

Don't get me wrong. I really like Costa Rica, but PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE MAKE THIS COME TRUE!

Posted by: kguy1 | March 9, 2010 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Unfortunately, kguy, he'd still be able to broadcast from Costa Rica.

Posted by: Raysmom | March 9, 2010 2:14 PM | Report abuse

Not if he contracts dengue fever, Raysmom.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | March 9, 2010 2:35 PM | Report abuse

Ah, dengue fever. Is there no problem it cannot solve?

Posted by: ScienceTim | March 9, 2010 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Pesky in-laws, obnoxious politicans.. hmmm mmm hmmm...

Education funding?

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | March 9, 2010 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Dengue fever, ironyTim, will not take care of

apostrophe abominations or
costume catastrophes

Speaking of which, Charlize Theron wore satin swirls that read as landing targets on her pillows of pleasure. Now, clothing is to be read as deeply biological-DNA-driven-come hither stuffs, but MY GOODNESS. And, she paid somebody for this choice. The original gown, apparently, was in tonal blues without such contrast. The unconsidered move toward lavender and lilac....a big miss. Or hit, on the landing zone: think birds and bees.

As for poor Miley, tis the prom-discomfort problem. Darling weeWoman-gangling Girl puts the thing on. But feeling it is quite another. I also looked closely at her bodice. It was slowly slipping, San Andreas fault-like --, no wonder.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | March 9, 2010 3:02 PM | Report abuse

That was, without a doubt, Comment of the Day, CquaP.

I love this Kit. I am no beach-sitter, but it is refreshing to the eye to see sea and sun and greenery right about now.

Tim Dorsey is my new favourite Hiaasenesque novelist, though his protagonist Serge is vastly more violent than anyone our Carl has imagined.

Posted by: Yoki | March 9, 2010 3:07 PM | Report abuse

best wishes for a speedy recovery to NukeSis, scotty.

Posted by: -jack- | March 9, 2010 3:08 PM | Report abuse

Noooooooooooo! Rush cannot go to Costa Rica. I love that place. They are fussy about letting people stay there permanently, maybe we could all get up a petition or something. If not, there are lots and lots of bad things there, tarantulas, fer de lance snakes, scorpions... so there's hope!

Posted by: badsneakers | March 9, 2010 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Please let the door smack you real hard on your way out, Rush.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | March 9, 2010 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Is V1agra cheaper in Costa Rica? Is Oxycontin available over the counter there? Or is it for easier access to his favorite sex tourism providers?

Posted by: yellojkt | March 9, 2010 4:14 PM | Report abuse

Back in the late 70's when South Beach was exactly as Joel described and the weather warrented we would go body-surfing right next to the shipping channel tip where the big cruise ships traverse. It was a blast since the waves there were always the biggest and we were fearless.

I also have received some of my worst sunburns...ever on South Beach. That was when betadine tinged oil was used to, basically, broil one's self.

BTW, San Diego has magically transformed from a carmel city (brown) to an emerald city. It has turned so green from all the rain that it looks like an HD TV show. Beautiful!

Posted by: Windy3 | March 9, 2010 4:16 PM | Report abuse

Jeez. I remember all the girls used Johnson's baby oil tinged with betadine the summer I spent at the borough swimming pool. (Best summer of my life).

The year was 1962.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | March 9, 2010 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Yoki, I wear the Comment 'the Day Crown. Thank you. However, even in you are not cooking today, you always carry the Scepter of the Saute Pan.

Mudge, you are making me think of orange-burnished QT tan girls in the back yard, laying out to the tunes of:

Billy don't be a hero
One tin soldier
Yummy, Yummy Yummy Love in my T....
Sylvia's Mother Says
Ina GodaDaViDa

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | March 9, 2010 4:26 PM | Report abuse

uh oh Yello, I just remembered that prostitution is indeed legal in CR, or at least in San Jose, the capital. No wonder Rush wants to go there. Certain drugs are available OTC there, like codeine, I don't know about the ones you mentioned.

Posted by: badsneakers | March 9, 2010 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Roses Are Red (My Love), I Can't Stop Loving You, Ray Charles, Let's Twist Again, Stranger On The Shore, Johnny Angel, The Loco-Motion, Mashed Potato Time, Soldier Boy, Duke Of Earl, Wolverton Mountain (OMG. Wolverton Mountain. Jeezey-peezy), Palisades Park (Freddy “Boom-Boom” Cannon), The Wah Watusi, Sealed With a Kiss (ptooey), She Cried (loved this one), Norman (oooo, ooooo, Nor-mannnnn, ooooooo, oooooo), Baby It's You , Johnny Get Angry (had a crush on Joanie Sommers)...

And of course, ladies and gentleman, boys and girls…

The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence (he shot…Liberty Valence…)

I give you…1962.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | March 9, 2010 4:45 PM | Report abuse

Stoned Soul Picnic
(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay
Mrs. Robinson
Hello I Love You

Posted by: MsJS | March 9, 2010 4:46 PM | Report abuse

The WaPo has a photo of Tai Shan on the home page. I don't suppose that would be considered pandering, would it?

No, I guess not.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | March 9, 2010 4:53 PM | Report abuse

rimshot on the high hat cymbal in Mudge's direction

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | March 9, 2010 5:07 PM | Report abuse

This should be octopus week. The National Zoo octopus cam is up, and Science has a brief video of a Caribbean octopus pretending to be a flounder:

Joel's new story on NASA space strategy looks great, but it's perhaps relevant to note that Representative Posey, who is quoted about the loss of jobs and such, is the sort of Republican who would favor selling NASA (as proposed by Ron Paul) if it weren't in his district. Likewise, he'd love to get the Government out of medical care, except for providing more Veterans Administration services in his district.

My best guess is that, outside of two or three Florida congressional districts, space isn't a priority for Floridians. How about foreclosures, the collapsed house-building industry, radical cutbacks to school systems, and maybe the next hurricane, after it happens.

The yard's getting a minor cleanup today, oak leaves and dead leaves on several huge bromeliads that suffered cold damage.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | March 9, 2010 5:26 PM | Report abuse

Oh boy, wonderful summer beach memories in Florida. We had little transistor radios and listened to Heard it through the grapevine and Be young, be foolish but be happy, while we sprayed our hair with lemon juice. A little piece of Heaven, so long ago.

Posted by: -CB- | March 9, 2010 5:34 PM | Report abuse

If you're over 45 you may be interested in the following...

A chance to win a trip for two to the premiere of "Wall Street 2: Money Never Sleeps." New York? Los Angeles? Not sure.

I just happened to be in the dentist's office this afternoon for the six-month teeth cleaning maintenance and picked up AARP magazine. I picked up AARP not becaue I'm old. I picked up AARP because there was a picture of a very handsome Michael Douglas on the cover. I just happened to flip to the page with the contest news and made the hygenist wait for me to write down the web address, so I could enter the contest, on a loose subscription card from the magazine before I headed back to her dental chair:

Posted by: laloomis | March 9, 2010 5:34 PM | Report abuse

That's what all the senior citizens say. First it's AARP, then early bird specials, and pretty soon they're doing the hard stuff, just blowing their A1C counts out the water, staggering around glassy-eyed and hopped up on prescription painkillers.

And it always starts with that naughty little magazine with a hot photo.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | March 9, 2010 5:49 PM | Report abuse

tai shan in china... *pout*

mo's mojo to snukesis - i had a skiing accident that pretty much ripped up my knee as well so i can commiserate.

i wasn't even remotely a thought in 1962...


Posted by: mortii | March 9, 2010 5:51 PM | Report abuse


Prayers for healing and lots of patience for Nukesis.

Posted by: cmyth4u | March 9, 2010 6:01 PM | Report abuse

Duke of Earl! Possibly one of the best openings to a song ever. Of course, due to my extreme youth (shhhh!), I only heard it in the great late 70s revival of early sixties music.

Posted by: Yoki | March 9, 2010 6:05 PM | Report abuse

Puerto Rico's having an official dengue epidemic, not that anyone needs to put off a vacation. With cheap air fares from Orlando to Aguadilla, I've got to visit.

Costa Ricans seem to have a higher life expectancy than Americans, so Rush might perhaps look into a more fend-for-yourself country.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | March 9, 2010 6:09 PM | Report abuse

Here's to Nukeski-sis. May her body mend quickly and may her skis never steer her into a tree again (or whatever it was).

Mega ouchies there.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | March 9, 2010 6:12 PM | Report abuse

Great Pictures Joel! We only visited Miami once, back when the kids were little. We went to North Miami because we felt South Miami might be a bit intense. So instead of young women in skimpy bikinis we saw elderly ladies playing bingo. But it was still fun. I've never heard so much Yiddish in my life.

As far as a "bad to the bone" moment, I guess the closest was when I first fired up a Quad Core with a Tbyte Hard Drive and Multiple Monitor Support.


But I guess you had to be there.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | March 9, 2010 6:36 PM | Report abuse

Did you have heavy rock music on, RD?

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | March 9, 2010 6:49 PM | Report abuse

You better believe it Wilbrod. Like, I think, The Thompson Twins.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | March 9, 2010 6:53 PM | Report abuse

I do have a soft spot for 1962. At least I did at the time since the bones in my skull hadn't quite fused.

But if I had to revisit a particular summer, I guess I wouldn't mind hanging out in 1984 for a spell. I was freshly graduated, was picking out a cool apartment for grad school, and a life ahead of me looked like nothing but clear sailing..

In retrospect, I think the bones in my skull might have fused a bit too tightly.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | March 9, 2010 7:03 PM | Report abuse

Hello,everybody,the good shoping place,the new year approaching, click in. Let's facelift bar!
===== HTTP:// ====

Air jordan(1-24)shoes $33


Nike shox(R4,NZ,OZ,TL1,TL2,TL3) $35

Handbags(Coach lv fendi d&g) $35

Tshirts (Polo ,ed hardy,lacoste) $16

Jean(True Religion,ed hardy,coogi) $30

Sunglasses(Oakey,coach,gucci,Armaini) $16

New era cap $15

Bikini (Ed hardy,polo) $25


Posted by: loveshoppingus | March 9, 2010 7:20 PM | Report abuse

OOOh! It's a Spambot sorta thing. And it picked us!

I feel so special now.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | March 9, 2010 7:23 PM | Report abuse

Evening everyone.

As I have mentioned before I use Igoogle, so in a quiet moment at work I glaced a my Achenblog gadget on Igoogle and noted two new kits, I clicked on one called Feature Advertiser, thinking it was about something Joel had seen in Miami.

It was not, some sort of scrolling Advertising, anyone else have that problem? If you see it do not click.

Posted by: dmd3 | March 9, 2010 7:30 PM | Report abuse

But, you know, nostalgia distorts your memory sometimes. You remember the anticipation but not the uncertainty.

So, looking back, 1984 was a great summer, but so was 2004. (1994 started really well.)

And I have great expectations for 2014, 2024, and 2034. Even 2044 might not be too bad so long as the pharmacological advances keep up.

2054? Well, I'm not sure I wanna find out.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | March 9, 2010 7:30 PM | Report abuse

January to November, 2009 was my best time ever. Which bodes well for the future, I think.

Posted by: Yoki | March 9, 2010 7:38 PM | Report abuse are older than I am. :-)

Posted by: Windy3 | March 9, 2010 7:50 PM | Report abuse

I'm seriously behind once again, but thank you all for the good wishes and mojo. NukeSis is resting comfortably (at least, as much as one can with one's knee immobilized with large pins protruding at odd angles) and is in relatively good spirits. I just wish unremitting hell on the glassbowl who stopped short in front of her and then skiied off obliviously. *SIGH*

Posted by: Scottynuke | March 9, 2010 7:53 PM | Report abuse

Glad for you, Yoki, to know about this happy interval.

Abodes can bode well for bodies, earthly and celestial.

And, this does not quite fit but my new favorite word -- beside 'meadow' -= is 'bothy.'

'Tis a cottage, especially Scotts Gaelic, that is small and snug. Now, a bothy means a community-owned hut on a trail or in the hills. Wanderers may stay. Wanderers need only clean up afterwards and shut the door.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | March 9, 2010 7:53 PM | Report abuse's to "pharmcological advances!"

I just returned from another roadtrip meeting. It is still(!) emerald green outside.

Posted by: Windy3 | March 9, 2010 7:53 PM | Report abuse

Oooh...Scotty...sending healing thoughts for your sister. Hope ski patrol finds the culprit.

Posted by: Windy3 | March 9, 2010 7:56 PM | Report abuse

Snuke, wikkid good karhma mojo to sis o'snuke.

Posted by: rickoshea1 | March 9, 2010 7:57 PM | Report abuse

Will you still need me?
Will you still feed me?
When I'm ninety-four?

Posted by: ScienceTim | March 9, 2010 8:41 PM | Report abuse

All right, Boodle, listen up. Time to change the subject. I know a lot of you guys hat to talk about this subject, but you're going to just have to suck it up, or go surf the Drudgereport. The subject is food, and more specifically, recipes. Yes, yes, I can hear some of you whining and complaining already. "Mudge," I hear you say, "do we have to talk about the F word again?" Yes, we do. I've been holding back on you. dear Boodle, for over a week now. So now the time has come for another installment of

(cue theme music, trumpets, etc.)

Mudge's Stoopid Kitchen Tips (Chinese gong sound)

1. Perhaps only a man who has to cook his own dinner might think of this, but I did. I have no idea if it is original or not; for all I know, ten thousand Web sites have this tip. If so, I am hopelessly unaware, but here it is:

How to Improve Tomato Soup

You know, good old Campbell's ordinary everyday no-frills tomato soup? Whether you make it with water or milk, put in a modest teaspoon of Lipton's Onion Soup Mix, the dry powder, right out of the envelope. Gives it a nice little kick.

Ta-dahhhh! (What? You were expecting boef bourgignon?)

2. Tired of Tomato Soup? (or, Son of How to Improve Tomato Soup)

You're standing there, looking into your kitchen cabinet or pantry. You see a can of tomato soup (the regular 10.5 ounce size with the pop top). You see a canpbell's Chunky Sirloin Vegetable Soup (or whatever the call it; there's actually two kinds of similar soup, in the larger 16-oz. size that you do NOT add water to). And you're thinking, which one do I want? Solution: both. Yep, In a saucepan add one can of tomato soup and one can of the sirloin-o-beef whatever it is, add one rounded teasopoon of Lipton's Onion Soup Mix magic powder, and voila!! you have a nice, chucky soup that is better than eighter of the main ingredients done seperately. Makes enough for two or three people. (Note: you do NOT have to add the single can of water the tomato soup calls for, if you don't want to. I omitted it, and it was just fine. I suppose you *could* add the water, if you wanted to thin it out a bit or feed another person (might get as many as four reasonable servings out of it that way, especially if you were feeding a passel of kids).


Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | March 9, 2010 8:42 PM | Report abuse

3. A New Steak Sauce

My wife cut out a recipe a few weeks ago, and a week ago I made it for some houseguests. It is so dead simple I am almost ashamed to tell it (and six of you will tell me yopu've been doing this since the Eisenhower administration). Be that as it may, I shall plunge fearlessly forward. Here it is (take good notes; this gets complex).:

Mix two tablespoons of A-1 steak sauce with 2 tablespoons of a good balsamic vinegar.

OK, I'll give you all a minute to work on that one; I know it has subtle techniques some of you less adept cooks may need to practice. Basically, equal parts of A-1 and balsamic. Three tablespoons of each, four, one, whatever. Stir. Serve. Also, you can drizzle this on the steak while it is grilling or broiling, after you turn it over. Or drizzle on afterward.

4. Steak/London Broil Presentation

This was actually the recipe my wife cut out from somewhere. It called for some sort of grilled beef, I think a top round or something. I happened to have some London broil meat on hand, and used it. BNasically you cook the beef/steak/London broil, whatever it is until it is almost done to whatever stage you want, minus three minutes. In the case of the London broil, I grilled it, then slice it into 1-inch wide chunks (my son believes this is blasphemy; he believes London broil should be sliced in the thinnest possible slices, and ordinarily I'd agree, but sometimes you can go the other way). The recipe then calls for putting a long narrow strip of ordinary swiss cheese on each piece, then drizzling with the a-1/balsamic mixture, and running all of it under the (pre-heated) broiler for 2 or 3 minutes, until the swiss cheese melts. Then serve.

I was initially leery of using swiss cheese this way, but you know what? It works. (One could substitute other cheese, I suppose. Knock yourselves out.) But it does work, and it makes the presentation interesting, and adds a bit of quirkiness to an otherwise "ordinary" steak or London broil.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | March 9, 2010 8:43 PM | Report abuse

So many times I have come so close to the event that happened about 15 minutes ago.

I hit a deer with my car. My husband was in the passenger seat, and he saw the deer standing in the median while I was driving in the left-hand lane. By the time the words were out of his mouth, the deer was careening off my car. Thankfully, the deer did not smash into the windshield.

This took place along a road that was cut through woods (near the San Antonio Police Prue Road substation) to alleviate traffic congestion nearby but in an area that is dark, wooded and not yet developed--and not very well lighted.

We are fine, I am more shaken up than my husband. When we came home, we checked for damage to my car. Very big dent in the hood, scratch mark in the middle of the giant dent as from a hoof, and deer hair sticking out every which way from the H (Honda) emblem on the hood. Called the substation, which directed me to dispatch, so that some patrol car can go check to see if the young deer is lying in the right lane as a road hazard.

Me--to the dispatcher: I'm a bleeding heart and I was wondering if there's anything you can to for the deer--since it may have a broken leg, possibly hip and possibly internal injuries.

Diupatcher: Ma'am, we're sending someone out to see if the deer is a road hazard.

I know I'll be on the phone with the insurance company in the morning. My husband just informs me that we don't have collision coverage. My '94 just rolled over to 100,000 when I went to the Porter-Liss reading. *sigh*

Posted by: laloomis | March 9, 2010 8:45 PM | Report abuse

Mudge, Thanks. I believe in a little of this and a little of that as a get-along strategy.

Dinner this evening: skinless chicken tenderloins braised slowly in a tiny dutch oven: rubbed with olive oil and rolled in pepper flakes and garlic powder. Texmati rice, dressed in cilantro, lime, and a dash of Tabasco. Delish; will appear in tacos tomorrow.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | March 9, 2010 8:57 PM | Report abuse

Probably not a good time to talk about venison.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | March 9, 2010 8:58 PM | Report abuse

A re-run of "Glee" on Fox, and a new episode of "Lost" on ABC. Thank goodness for Tivo.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | March 9, 2010 9:04 PM | Report abuse

A re-run of "Glee" on Fox, and a new episode of "Lost" on ABC. Thank goodness for Tivo.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | March 9, 2010 9:05 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | March 9, 2010 9:09 PM | Report abuse

Tis fine, Mudge, you dropped your nice men's linen hankie by the barcalounger that I had redone for you in fine Corinthian naugahyde. I washed it, ironed, and folded the nice square. In your locker.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | March 9, 2010 9:17 PM | Report abuse

What would I do without you?

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | March 9, 2010 9:19 PM | Report abuse

Use Kleenex and wear lemon yellow leisure suits.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | March 9, 2010 9:23 PM | Report abuse

Joel's article about Obama and NASA, in case anyone wants to read ahead:

Posted by: seasea1 | March 9, 2010 9:32 PM | Report abuse

And that's only the half of it, CqP! There was the turquoise turtleneck and the big, clunky silver chain he wore with the leisure suit, too! Even in the 70's, that outfit really stuck out.

Thank heavens you came along to reform his wardrobe!

(I will admit, the doublet and hose [including codpiece] from the 1590's, now that was an outfit I liked. Such beautiful green velvet brocade. And the yellow hose really set it off!)

Posted by: slyness | March 9, 2010 9:34 PM | Report abuse

Yes. Slyness, loved his velvet brocade cut away waistcoate. Inside are tiny pockets where he keeps his wooing verses on tiny scraps of paper.

I remember this one:

Yellow roses in the mart
Buds for you, they plop apart.

And, this bon mot:

Sunset eyes
Sunset lips
Moon-pearl teeth
Breath o' meath

Come buss me dear and we will entwine a Christmas weath

I think that last one was for some Holly or Noelle or Natalia -- Mudgieboy and his conquests. The brocade helped. The mockneck turtles? Not so much.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | March 9, 2010 9:41 PM | Report abuse

kilt by pomes, the boodle is
gilt my tomes, mea culpa, tis

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | March 9, 2010 10:07 PM | Report abuse

He was certainly the dashing Lothario in the 1590's, wasn't he? Poor Noelle, she fell hard, and then he left her for Holly. Or was it Kate? All those blondes, they ran together in my mind. At least I could tell Will Shakespeare's brunettes apart. Of course, there were far fewer brunettes than blondes. Mudge was a magnet for women, no doubt about it! Will and Ben and John Webster were always jealous. It was all I could do to keep them from running him through with their rapiers...

Posted by: slyness | March 9, 2010 10:12 PM | Report abuse

Scottynuke, next time NukeSis will know not to stop, but keep going and bowl over the jerk who stops abruptly in front of her. Let him ruin his knee.

I always make tomato soup with half a can of milk instead of water. Skim milk, so I can't really call it "cream of" tomato soup.

Tonight: fried chicken (breasts), mashed potatoes, gravy, green beans, sliced apple. I've spoiled us; I've been making mashed potatoes with butter and skim milk and a little cream, but tonight I omitted the cream (see cream gravy, above). They taste better with cream.

Posted by: Ivansmom | March 9, 2010 10:34 PM | Report abuse

Smashed potatoes taste even better with yogurt, Ivansmom. And the Boy need not know.

I used to prepare my Campbell's soup with milk instead of water. Until the time I made it shortly after Son of G was born.

Remember how newborn poop smells like hot milk? Sitting down to a hot bowl of soup that smelled just like my newborn's poop put an end to that preparation method.

But Campbell's tomato soup (made with water!) is still the required accompaniment to grilled cheese sammiches.

Posted by: -TBG- | March 9, 2010 10:38 PM | Report abuse

SCC: I used to prepare my Campbell's TOMATO soup...

Posted by: -TBG- | March 9, 2010 10:39 PM | Report abuse

Rhymed poems?! Folks beware--
We don't need rhymes spewed by pups
full o' the haikups....


Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | March 9, 2010 10:43 PM | Report abuse

TBG, I don't *actually* remember, but thank you for the smell imagery.

I may never drink warm milk again.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | March 9, 2010 10:45 PM | Report abuse

if you have the time to listen to a long jam, this is pretty good. touted as the best not fade away. ever.

not fade away>jam>goin' down the road feeling bad>not fade away, johnny b. goode

Posted by: -jack- | March 9, 2010 10:51 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, Wilbrod... that was a little TMI. But I drink hot milk now, no problem. With a little vanilla and a pinch of sugar... it's my treat to help me get to sleep every once in a while.

Posted by: -TBG- | March 9, 2010 10:56 PM | Report abuse

Just so you tell Son of G this story-- a lot. Spread the misery around.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | March 9, 2010 10:59 PM | Report abuse

TBG, I think newborn p00p smells like milk because in many cases, that's pretty much what it is, isn't it?

Wilbrod, I add a little honey to the warm milk and it's fine. Of course, as a roll-up the sleeves Dad, home surgeon, consumer of local fauna, emergency pest control, amateur plumber and septic tank maint guy, it takes a spectacular situation to slow down my appetite. Changing diapers in the middle of dinner - if necessary - was never a problem (yeah, I washed my hands. Twice.) for me. Even if dinner was meatloaf, mashed potatoes and gravy, steamed broccoli and lemonade. And chocolate mousse pie for dessert.


Posted by: -bc- | March 9, 2010 11:16 PM | Report abuse

thanks for all of the great music, Yoki.

young jorma

much older, but showing the same mastery of his instrument

Posted by: -jack- | March 9, 2010 11:23 PM | Report abuse

Posted without comment...

Posted by: rashomon | March 9, 2010 11:40 PM | Report abuse

Ivansmom, SkiPatrolDad taught us far too well for us to ever run over someone on the slopes... Much to our chagrin on multiple occasions. *SIGH*

Thanks again, everyone, I have to think the Boodle mojo plays some role in NukeSis taking this all so well.

Although pharmaceuticals certainly have something to do with her "good" mood. *SIGH*

*back-to-yet-another-crazy-day-of-falling-behind-in-my-Boodling Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | March 10, 2010 5:30 AM | Report abuse

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

Good morning, friends. Scotty, the meds do make a difference, and I say that not to be offensive, but they sort of mellow a person out. Hope your sis is okay, and prayers for perfect healing.

Lindaloo, glad you and hubby are okay.

I'm thinking mashed potatoes for dinner. Your menu sounds really good, Ivansmom.

Busy Wednesday, and I'm getting ready to meet it, but first the coffee.

Scotty, Mudge, Yoki, Martooni, Lindaloo, and everyone here, may your day be the best ever.

Slyness, it's trying so hard to be spring, and I'm cheering it on.

Posted by: cmyth4u | March 10, 2010 5:44 AM | Report abuse

I've blocked out all olfactory memories of diaper changing out of my mind. And I changed my share of diapers. That's one of those generational paradigm shifts. If you saw the "baby makes the show jump the shark" episode of The Office, Jim brags that he is able to diaper anything and demonstrates on a football and a housecat. My father on the other hand has never changed a diaper in his life. And that includes three kids and seven grandchildren.

As far as iccky baby memories, who hasn't used the dipstick method at least once to see if a diaper needs changing?

Posted by: yellojkt | March 10, 2010 5:48 AM | Report abuse

And here is your morning dose of cute, in French no less:

Don't overdose.

Posted by: yellojkt | March 10, 2010 6:03 AM | Report abuse

Breakfast buffet is on the lanai. Fresh grilled kielbasa and extrA-crispy hash browns is the widowmaker's special. Else oatmeal, turkey bacon, juice, coffee, iced tea and Greek yogurt. Seating is first come, first served.

Posted by: -dbG- | March 10, 2010 6:22 AM | Report abuse

'Morning, Boodle.

It's no longer safe to watch the morning news while getting dressed without a major blood pressure incident. No less than THREE of them this morning in the space of five minutes:

1) an ad for the nation's rail system (don't ask me why) bragging about how it has many great jobs that "can't be offshored." "Offshore" is now apparently a verb.

2) the crawl under the NBC news show says that Mrs. Obama's inauguration dress "on goes display" today. On goes.

3) The weather lady said it was X degrees this morning "in Washington and in Foggy Bottom." Foggy Bottom is "in" Washington. So if...oh, the hell with it.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | March 10, 2010 6:51 AM | Report abuse

Morning everybody, hi Cassandra! Thanks for the great breakfast, dbG! Good to see you so early in the morning.

Yello, my preferred method for checking diapers was to pinch and see if it felt squishy. Then I knew, if the smell wasn't the first clue. However, with the improvement in diaper technology, I'm not sure that would be an infallible method today.

It's my busy day too, Cassandra, time to get moving.

Posted by: slyness | March 10, 2010 7:03 AM | Report abuse

Have some fresh pineapple and Kona, Mudge. Let me find you an unopened newspaper.

Posted by: -dbG- | March 10, 2010 7:03 AM | Report abuse

You're welcome, slyness.

I've been up since 2 and in since 3:30 doing server pAtching at the time most convenient for my 24/7 clients. Almost done.

Posted by: -dbG- | March 10, 2010 7:41 AM | Report abuse

Good morning! Goes how it, Mudge. Folks start will shooting movie a in our courtroom today. The period is the Seventies so I anticipate icky costumes. Goes it so.

TBG, Greek yogurt is a good idea for a secret mashed potatoes. Often I substitute lebni for sour cream, cream or cottage cheese (many of which I often lack) - it is just a little thicker. The Ivansclan has had it often, unawares, so perhaps next time in the potatoes it will I put.

Posted by: Ivansmom | March 10, 2010 8:37 AM | Report abuse

dbG-I'll take some of that kielbasa, a breakfast favorite Chez Frostbitten. Thanks.

Slush on top of ice on the river this morning. Won't be long before the channel is open and the otters will have a few days of play and easy fishing. Not that they don't play and fish in the summer, it's just harder to observe them.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | March 10, 2010 8:43 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, Boodle.

TBG, you made me laugh. Just last week, while having lunch in the hospital cafeteria, a brother asked me why I had chosen mushroom soup over tomato. "Because I don't have a grilled cheese sandwich."

Posted by: Yoki | March 10, 2010 8:44 AM | Report abuse

I wish I had some Lebni right now. Hello, Yoki. All I have is coffee.

Posted by: russianthistle | March 10, 2010 8:51 AM | Report abuse

Although, I could make a grilled cheese as I am loaded with bread and a medium cheddar. (I know that is so wrong)

Posted by: russianthistle | March 10, 2010 8:52 AM | Report abuse

Let's see whether I can share this link:

Worth a try. Risible it is.

Posted by: Ivansmom | March 10, 2010 8:54 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, Yoki; you're up early. Yes, a grilled cheese sandwich and a cup of tomato soup is one of the finest lunches there is. Not bad for dinner, even, on a cold raw Saturday night. (Saturday night, because that was the one informal dinner night in my childhood, when the rules about having a green vegetable re suspended.)

Fresh pineapple and Kona? And an unwrinkled Philly Inquirer? Oh, dbG, you spoil me.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | March 10, 2010 8:54 AM | Report abuse

I'm sorry to admit that I've never been a fan of tomato soup. I even made it fresh once to see if I'd like it then, still didn't.

Does anyone who sleeps with a dog ever get a full night's rest? I am so looking forward to not waking up repeatedly all night long!

Wonderful to see Beck squirm last night. He met his match and more in 'crazy'.

Posted by: badsneakers | March 10, 2010 8:56 AM | Report abuse

Yes, Ivansmom, highly risible! That problem certainly destroys Austen novels. Or Tolstoy novels. Or any novels, actually.

Posted by: slyness | March 10, 2010 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Mudge, explain to me or postulate... why so many kids and adults, for that matter, don't like green veggies?

Me? I can't enjoy life without them. They can be like dessert for me, if prepared well.

Posted by: russianthistle | March 10, 2010 9:04 AM | Report abuse

badsneakers... I saw a bit of the show via Olbermann. (Beck and Massa)

I have been keeping a low profile recently, but had noticed that the usual anti-Obama folks who leaned towards Clinton during the last primary sessions were wearing their tin hats and going with the conspiracy theories about Rahm--that was, until last nights "Reeeelly Big Shoe"

Boy, was that creepy.

Of course, I always find Beck creepy, but when he is out-creeped, it is wonderful to watch.

Posted by: russianthistle | March 10, 2010 9:10 AM | Report abuse

Weed, I saw a sciency show on PBS not too long ago that presented evidence of a particular common genetic variant that influenced how people tasted 'bitter'. It was more complicated than on or off, though. Maybe no copies vs. one copy vs. two copies of a particular gene? Anyhow, the show was making the case that picky eaters aren't just being difficult.

Posted by: -bia- | March 10, 2010 9:10 AM | Report abuse

Here's Milbank's take on the Glenn Beck/Eric Massa fiasco. It's nothing short of mind-boggling. (Not Milbank being mind-boggling, it's Beck and Massa who are certifiable.)

Just unbelievable.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | March 10, 2010 9:11 AM | Report abuse

Here we go, found the transcript:

Posted by: -bia- | March 10, 2010 9:13 AM | Report abuse

Mudge, I am not totally convinced that Beck is certifiable. He is somewhere between brilliant demagogue and stooge. He certainly is the adrenal gland of the whacko right wing movement. He gets paid to perform.

Posted by: russianthistle | March 10, 2010 9:16 AM | Report abuse

Good morning to the Boodle! And thanks for a lovely b'fast, dbG.

First off, to Yoki -- you guys *creamed* us last night! And we're fighting with each other for a playoff space. Geez! And, yes, well, okay, to be charitable and polite to my dear Boodle friend, I give you my *heartfelt* (with mild *grumps*) congratulations.

Greek yogurt (which I like) in mashed potatoes ... sounds yummy. And Weed, I'm with ya on green veggies. In fact, I like veggies in all colors (except for moldy colors). To those who say that they don't like vegetables, I say -- Oh, goody! More for me (and Weed)!

I need to get back into making soups again. I like the nice, thick, hearty soups (winter soups, mainly) with lots of "stuff" in them. Lentil soup is indeed a favorite.

I suspect it's going to be a quieter day than the last two days were (not complaining, really), so I can get some other, nonessential stuff taken care of (do forgive the dangling preposition).

And that's it for now. Cy'all later.

Posted by: -ftb- | March 10, 2010 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Weed, I didn't mean to give the impression that I watched Beck on Faux, I saw it the same way you did, on Olbermann. I don't even know which channel Faux is on, nor do I care to find out!

Posted by: badsneakers | March 10, 2010 9:26 AM | Report abuse

Great question, weed, and one that I've been arguing for two or three decades. I think there are three main reasons.

The first is pretty much as bia just said. I read an article in Psychology Today magazine about 25 or 30 years ago that said that some people -- about 10 percent of the population, IIRC -- have a fifth kind of taste bud on their tongues, which registers highly alkaline. Therefore, if you eat broccoli and have the usual four kinds of taste buds of most people, broccoli tastes a certain way to you. I firmly believe I am part of the 10 percent (or whatever the number, it doesn't matter much) who have that fifth alkaline taste bud. So basically, you and I are not tasting the same thing. I didn't see the PBS thing, but it sounds like that's basically what it is saying, too.

I simply can't eat lima beans, brussel sprouts (OMG. Just awful), broccoli, kale, cauliflower, etc.--that end of the line. I'm fine with green beans/string beans, peas, and spinach. I disliked asparagus most of my life, which leads me to the second reason why people hate vegetables:

2) People cook them so badly. In my family, it seemed to be High Religion that you boiled vegetables until they turned into compost, and then served them steaming hot. I don't know why this was, but my mother and my grandmother both did it that way, and so no wonder I hated them. I used to hate spinach: a boiled sodden mass, with no seasoning. But now I like it, especially creamed, and even non-creamed, if it isn't boiled to death and if it has some nutmeg on it. Why we had no nutmeg when I was a kid I have no idea.

Ditto asparagus. Until about 8 or 10 years ago, the only way I'd ever seen it was boiled (OK, steramed, sometimes). But still basically unpalatable. Then I learned somewhere to grill it, drizzled with EVOO and sprinkled with Monterey steak seasoning, and discovered it is really good (and not bitter and yucky).

Ditto string beans. I've always liked them -- but only ever had them sodden and boiled for the first few decades of my life, whether they were canned or frozen, french cut or cross cut, whatever. Don't think I'd ever had fresh green beans until I was in my 30s or 40s and started eating them at banquets when they give you a platter with them on it whether you wanted them or not.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | March 10, 2010 9:32 AM | Report abuse

New kit.

Posted by: yellojkt | March 10, 2010 9:34 AM | Report abuse

This is pretty funny:

A note of no interest to anyone but me: I worked with Calin Rovinescu from 1983 - 1996. He was a lowly associate when I first knew him, and he once tried to persuade me to give him half of my cheddar/blue cheese on a baguette sandwich at lunch hour. There was a reason why he was a corporate/commercial lawyer and not a barrister; I won that argument.

Posted by: Yoki | March 10, 2010 9:35 AM | Report abuse


The third main reason I think has to do with some things simply being an "acquired taste"; you just have to work on them. Why this is I don't know-- but you just seem to have to "learn" to eat or drink some things: beer, coffee, olives, gin, scotch, whatever. And it seems young kids simply don't have the patience or whatever it takes to develop tastes for some things. I didn't learn to like coffee until I was in college; scotch took me until my 30s, and I was 50 before I learned to drink gin. But I confess I do not understand this mechanism. I sometimes wonder if it isn't somehow similar to "learning" how to smoke, because the experience of what a cigarette tastes like the very first time -- and to non-smokers -- is quite different to what a cigarette tastes like after one has learned to inhale. (I accept that this is a phenomenon non-smokers simply cannot comprehend: that what a non-smoker smells is far different from what a smoker smells and tastes. Why this is I have no clue. But I smoked 2 packs a day for 20 years, and I know it to be true. I just loved the taste of my cigarette, but I also had to learn it, and it took 6 months.)

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | March 10, 2010 9:43 AM | Report abuse

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