Thursday, March 31, 2011

Mmmmmm, Dog Jerky Treats

I’ve never been crazy about beef jerky. It’s about as interesting as chewing on a salty shoe. Dogs are less picky, so we recently started buying chicken jerky treats for our dogs. The dried-out slices of chicken parts are long and thin and look like bacon. The dogs love them and everyday at 5:00 p.m. they come running around and begging for the treats. Lately I’ve noticed when I pull them from the bag, they look really good. They smell like dried, processed chicken, but as I’ve said, they look like bacon. And what’s not to love about bacon? I’ve found myself really wanting to try one.

It’s crazy, I know! I’m sure it would break my teeth and make me long for the salty rubber flavor of a Slim Jim. But when I look at them, I think of Sunday brunch and a juicy, fat slice of crispy bacon. And French toast with a side of hash browns. And champagne. I really want to eat one of these treats.

Then I realized if I wanted to make an entertaining blog about it, I should film myself eating it and post it on youtube. I could title it “Crazy Guy Eats Dog Treats.” And now for your viewing pleasure, here’s the clip…

No I couldn’t do it. I finally realized there’re probably scarier videos out there and sure enough, a brief search leads to “Girl Eats Dog Food Naked.” (It’s a 2-minute clip so I’ll wait here until you finish.)

This scenario reminds me of another problem I have: when I’m doing laundry and I pour the liquid detergent into the cap, I have to remind myself not to drink it. I have no desire to drink it, but for some reason my brain is reminded of pouring a glass of water or wine and has to nudge me that this is indeed not wine. (Amazingly, I don’t have this problem with bleach but maybe that’s because I pour the bleach directly into the water rather than a measuring cup.)

After I pour in the detergent, I breathe a sigh of relief that once again I have avoided drinking it but then find myself going over scenarios of what I should do the day that I actually do drink it. Hopefully I’ll catch myself before I drink too much. If not, I’ll perform a self-Heimlich maneuver by thrusting my stomach against the washing machine lid. Then I’ll rinse my mouth out with water. And hopefully the worst thing that happens is I burp soap bubbles for a few days. Because I’m certainly not telling St. Pauli Girl.

She’ll probably say, “Why did you do that?”

“I don’t know. Seemed like a good idea. I think my mind noticed that it was a rare vintage.”

So I struggle through my daily life trying not to eat the dog treats and drinking laundry detergent though I know at some point in the future, I will fail. Perhaps if I just eat a dog treat today, that will stop me from ever putting anything stupid in my mouth again. At least that’s the excuse I’ll use when St. Pauli Girl catches me with a hunk of dog jerky hanging out of my mouth.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Economic Baggage

I am all in favor of airlines charging fees for baggage. Why should I expect to be able to pay the same airfare as I did ten years ago? Besides, I fly maybe twice a year and maybe check a bag (golf clubs) once; plus I live in a Southwest airlines market. So my opinion is actually pretty pointless.

Anyway, I booked one of my annual trips this week using frequent flyer miles. My mind then ran down the economic dilemma of whether or not to bring the golf clubs as argued by the golfer in my mind versus the financial guru:

Golfer: I want to play golf with family members but it will cost an extra $50 round trip to bring my clubs.

Guru: You could rent golf clubs at the course for maybe $20.

Golfer: But playing with unknown clubs, I will play terrible. It’s better to bring my own clubs.

Guru: You play golf once a year. You’re going to play terrible even if it’s a course with windmills and dinosaurs.

Golfer: Oh wise guru, you’re also forgetting that I’ll have to buy golf balls and a golf glove.

Guru: You can pack those in your carry-on. At least pack the golf glove and buy a sleeve or two of balls at the golf course.

Golfer: But pro shop golf balls are really expensive.

Guru: Not if you buy those slightly used ones they sell for $.50 each from the fishbowl on the counter. Or grab a few from the driving range.

Golfer: So now you want me to play with unfamiliar clubs and balls? You may as well pencil in my score of 150.

Guru: Ten strokes above your average? It’s worth the money savings.

Golfer: What about shoes? They won’t fit in my carryon.

Guru: Wear them.

Golfer: In an airport? I’ll look like a dork.

Guru: You’re also married, fat and have a mullet. It doesn’t matter what you look like anymore.

Golfer: Yeah, but security may confiscate the shoes as a weapon.

Guru: They’re rubber spikes! They can’t hurt anyone. In fact, they really don’t even help you on the golf course. You wear tennis shoes most of the time, remember?

Golfer: Well if it’s dry. But we’ll probably play in the morning dew and I don’t want to slip. And what if we end up with a stranger as the fourth person in the foursome? Won’t the stranger be terrified of playing with someone in tennis shoes, rental clubs and used golf balls?

Guru: Remember about 15 years ago when you got stuck playing with a guy that looked like a cross between John Denver, Grizzly Adams and Jesus Christ? He wore an old leather cowboy hat, jeans and sandals. Do you remember how you scoffed? And he went out and shot 72. If you play like that, no one cares how you look.

Golfer: So now you’re saying I should bring my clubs because I couldn’t possibly shoot 72 with rental clubs.

Guru: The only way you post 72 is if a tornado carries you away after the 12th hole or so.

Golfer: But it’s not just about a score. It’s the jokes, camaraderie, and the beer.

Guru: Go to a bar.

Golfer: Our wives won’t let us sit in a bar for five hours. That’s the only reason we golf.

Guru: I see. In that case you’ll want to check your golf bag on the flight but take all of the clubs out of it.

Golfer: Why?

Guru: You can fill it with ice and beer. You’ll save money in the long run.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

White Guy Scholars

My niece recently won a small college scholarship offered to students of Hungarian descent. Naturally, she had to have proof of her Hungarian heritage. Not a problem, as last year she won the National Stuffed-Cabbage Bake-off.

This reminded me of another new scholarship being offered to white male Texans by the Former Majority Association for Equality. That’s mighty white of them. (Ha, you had to see that one coming.) Anyway, you must be 25% Caucasian to be eligible for the scholarship. I wonder how you go about proving that?

Luckily I obtained a sample application and am offering some sample answers to help out any un-certified white males out there:

The Former Majority Association for Equality
“White Guys Don’t Need to Jump”

White Guy Scholarship Application

Name: Dexter Klemperer

Address: Texas

Phone: Censored

Tell us about yourself:

I am: __X__ A White Guy _____ Other

(If you checked “Other”, you can skip to the signature section. Don’t bother enclosing a SASE)

Tell us about your schooling: My favorite subject is English. I refused to take a foreign language, because you can never be sure what they are really teaching you. Instead I did an independent study of Old English. Because of that, I earned a part in our school musical production of “Jack the Ripper.” I played the part of Ye Olde Chorus. I also enjoyed chemistry, keyboard skills and skeet shooting.

Tell us about your career aspirations: I hope to join a large mega-corporation and become a mid- to high-level manager. I hope to eventually stand on the glass ceiling. Or I might go to law school and someday become a Supreme Court justice like my idols: Scalia, Roberts, Alito, Kennedy, Breyer, and the rest.

Tell us about your heroes: I have a very well-rounded list of heroes, from entertainment to sports to politics. Musically, I admire Josh Groban, Toby Keith, Bing Crosby, and Justin Bieber if he weren’t Canadian. I think Eminem is talented but that he just went too far. I like Larry Bird, most golfers, almost everyone in the NHL and all of NASCAR. As for politics, I think the United States had a spectacular run of great Presidents up until the current one. My favorite is Thomas Jefferson because although he owned slaves, he eventually didn’t have to buy anymore because he just sired new ones. I also believe Roosevelt doesn’t get enough credit for creating the Japanese internment camps. Actually, if he were around today, we probably wouldn’t need immigration policy. We could just turn Arizona into one giant internment camp.

Tell us about some instances where you managed to overcome the stigma of being a white minority: I joined the chess club my freshman year where I was surrounded by Asians. Back then they could checkmate me in 4 moves while reading an electrical engineering textbook at the same time. But I stuck with it and eventually earned their respect. I never won but by the time I was a senior they at least had to put their books down while playing me.

I actually embraced the idea of being a minority and trying to learn other cultures when I got my first job at Taco Bell. I never liked Mexican food and the only Mexican words I knew were “Frito Bandito.” But I jumped right into the culture and even invented my own burrito called: The Salisbury Steak and Gravy Burrito. I have come pretty close to mastering the Mexican language as well: gordita, chalupa, grande, tortilla, and supreme. I even know all the words to “Low Rider!”

How will you use the White Guy Scholarship to demonstrate your opposition to racism: What’s “racism”? That’s how far we’ve come! I’ve never experienced it! I prefer we live our lives with rose colored memories like Haley Barbour and the Sons of Confederate Veterans who are working tirelessly to set the historical record straight. I believe if we try hard enough, someday people will realize the Civil War was just a gentlemen’s disagreement over chicken fried steak.

Final Thoughts: I see this scholarship as my one last shot at greatness. My hope is to become the intellectual Gerry Cooney: “The Great White Hope” and perhaps, the last great white hope.

Signature: ___________________________________________

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Perry Speak

Yes, it’s another Governor Rick Perry blog. I can’t help it; he makes George W. Bush look like Sam Houston or at least Thomas Jefferson.

Rick Perry is a fanatical devotee of the 10th Amendment to the Constitution which from what he says means something like: as state governor I have the right to sit on the front porch of the governor’s mansion with a shotgun and tell federal lawmakers to get the hell off my ---- I mean our - property. And he’s absolutely right, especially when it comes to speed limits. (Never mind that in 2009 while denouncing federal stimulus money with his right hand, he was cashing the check with his left hand.)

But at least he practices what he preaches, because he has made it clear that in the same manner, the state does not interfere with city and county governments. Yesterday he announced that people should not blame the state for teacher layoffs because that is a local decision made by local school districts. Never mind that they get their money from the state. Never mind that the state is facing a $27 billion shortfall. Never mind that the state controls textbooks.

So it turns out that Perry doesn’t support state rights as much as he supports the idea that the state is always right. But most importantly, he’s given us hope and a new language in which we can lead more productive and richer lives. This is how the world would be if we all spoke like Rick Perry:

Boy to his mother: I didn’t eat the last cookie, my mouth did.

Speeding driver to police officer: It’s a Toyota. The accelerator was stuck. I wasn’t speeding, the car was.

Computer Programmer to Boss: Yes, I wrote the program. It’s not my fault the computer doesn’t know how to handle a null exception and shutdown.

Guy who firebombed the Texas governor’s mansion: Yes, I threw a molotov cocktail at the mansion. What happens after that is beyond my control.

Cook to irate customer: Yeah, I put a cup of cayenne pepper in that dish instead of paprika. So what? I can’t help it you aren’t cayenne tolerant.

Air Traffic Controller: Yeah, I had two planes landing on the same runway at the same time. They’re big planes. It’s not like they couldn’t see each other.

Kid playing softball: Yes, I hit the ball that went through your window. But it was a softball. The manufacturer didn’t make it soft enough.

Murderer to the jury: Yes, that was my gun. But what a bullet does after it leaves my gun is up to the bullet.

Airline Agent: Yes, I understand you were the only survivor of the plane crash, but I’ll still have to charge you a $150 rebooking fee to get you home.

Oh wait, that already happens.