Nov 30, 2006

Wasting Away Again....

I'm off tomorrow morning for my vacation. If you need me, I'll be here. Check out the webcam daily to watch me in action. I'm the chubby dude with the scruffy beard, ripped cargo shorts and tattered Titleist baseball cap. Er, wait...that could describe most of the locals there.

Anyway, it's the greatest bar in the world. Just a few feet away from Mile Marker Zero on US1. It is the first (or last) bar on that famed roadway. Been around since 1890 or so in one form or another.

The jukebox is the stuff of legends, as are the bartenders. The same crew has been there forever, well, at least since I started partying there in 1994.

The live music is fantastic for such a dive bar as well. Really great blues, rock and funk bands play here all the time. I'm looking forward to seeing the Eric Culberson Blues Band, Harper, Corey Harris and Sleepy LaBeef while I'm down there.

I'm also updating my links section to include the Green Parrot Bar Blog. I really just can't say enough about this place. And the house that we are renting is on the next blog.

Danger, Will Robinson....Danger.

I'll catch y'all when I get back. Maybe I'll post a few pics while I'm down there, ya never know. Ta ta!

Nov 28, 2006

I give the Thanks now....

Just a few things I am thankful for this season.

- Sliding Glass Doors - This deserved to be mentioned twice. Because every once in a while a loved one will drunkenly walk right into one because they don't see it. Maybe it will happen on your birthday. Maybe, just maybe, it will be the funniest thing you will ever see in your life. God, I love sliding glass doors!

- Jeff Bridges - Because he should have won an Academy Award for The Big Lebowski. His work in the bathtub with the "nice marmot" was priceless. The Dude abides.

- December in Key West - Yeah, I know I'm repeating things....whatever. Slyde keeps talking about his three week vacation this coming December. Yeah, but is he gonna spend it drinking in cool bars in a semi-tropical setting? Don't think so! HA!

- Blogging - when I'm supposed to be working. Fuck!

- All of my nieces and nephews - One of them drew me a birthday card this past weekend with gas coming out of ass with this little birthday message: "Happy Birthday, Uncle Farty Lumpy!" Yeah...that's special. Don't even ask me where Farty Lumpy comes from. It had nothing to do with me...initially.

- Guinness - I know I could probably live without it, but who the hell would want to?

- The 12 Bars of Christmas - It's this amazing annual Holiday party that we throw. We visit 12 bars in our little town in one night. A half hour and at least one drink at each place. Plus, we sing the 12 Days of Christmas at each bar. But we only go up to the bar number that we are at. Get it? So at the fifth bar we start with "On the fifth day of Christmas my true love gave to me...." and so on. We start out with maybe 20-25 revelers, but by the 8th or 9th bar we usually grow to twice that number. Just from people that are out and think what we are doing is cool. Even though it's not. Actually, it's kinda gay.

Nov 26, 2006

Odds and Sods

A couple of things on a lazy Sunday:

- I'm a little distraught at the loss to USC by my beloved Irish. I'm trying not to take it out on random sales clerks or waitresses, but it's hard. Fuckin' Trojans!

- Thanksgiving was awesome. I made two different kinds of mashed potatoes to bring to the family dinner. Sour cream and chive mashed spuds with roasted garlic and wasabi. And red-skinned mashed spuds with olive oil, roasted garlic, lemon zest and fresh parsley. The latter got the higher marks, but both were consumed whole-heartedly. Yum!

- One week until my Key West vacation. You all need to be jealous right now. It's always the best time. Ever.

- Gia walked into a sliding glass door last weekend. It was the funniest thing I've ever seen in my life. (FYI - no girlfriends were hurt in the making of this post)

Nov 21, 2006

How My Brain Met Your Mother

I wrote about the show "How I Met Your Mother" (HIMYM, from here on) a while back on Slyde's blog. I was joking about how they "stole" some dialogue from a previous post of mine. Oh, it, then get back to me.

I Knew Someone Was Reading (posted on
By B.E. Earl
05/12/2006 11:00 PM EST

Hey kids! Earl here again, while Slyde is vacationing. There is a new show on CBS that I've become a fan of in recent days. It's called How I Met Your Mother and I started watching because I've had this little crush on Alyson Hannigan ever since I started watching Buffy a few years back. It's a harmless bit o' fluffy TV sitcom made watchable mostly by the hilarious turn of Neil Patrick Harris as the suited-up Barney. Funny stuff.

But check out this fishy bit o' dialogue that was used in this past week's episode. The main character, Ted, is bemoaning the fact that he is single because he is too picky with women. He wants the perfect woman, and he goes into deep detail about the type of woman she is. He finishes it up with the following:

Ted: "And she plays bass guitar like Kim Deal from The Pixies."
Marshall: "Or Kim Gordon from Sonic Youth."
Ted: "Any Kim from any cool band, really. Cant' be too picky."

Whoa, whoa, whoa...doesn't that sound a little familiar? Let me refresh your memory from a post of mine back on March 31, 2006. The topic was Sonic Youth and Pauley Perrette, but I originally started the whole thing by talking about Kim Director when I wrote this:

B.E. Earl: "Some of my favorite all-time women have been named “Kim”. Kim Deal from The Pixies, Kim Gordon from Sonic Youth, and I could go on."

Am I being ripped off here by the writers of a major TV show? What the hell! Where is my royalty check?

Actually, the chances that anyone who was a fan of that type of music back in the day were probably fans of both The Pixies and Sonic Youth, and if they were male they most likely had a bit of a thing for the aforementioned Kims. Still, I thought it funny and weird enough to write in about.

OK. Done? Well, they are continuing to amaze me by writing shows that have previously taken place in my brain.

One of my friends has a wife who works in NYC. Her boss hangs out with her all the time. She's an attractive older woman and some of the guys that ride the train with my friend's wife have been calling her "Cougar" for years. Apparently it's a term that applies to any older attractive woman who hangs out in bars or something like that. We've had some fun with the term whenever we see her. Stupid fun.

Well, back in October the writers at HIMYM did an entire episode about Barney's experience in hunting Cougars. Here is a brief write-up on Barney's Blog if you care to read about it.

It doesn't end there. Before my trip to Vegas last month, my only experiences with gambling have been slots in New Orleans, Paradise Island and one ill-advised trip to Atlantic City. When we were in AC, me and my friend each brought a significant amount of cash to gamble with. Why not?

Once we got there we realized that we had no idea what we were doing, so we wound up watching much more than gambling. There was one game that really intrigued me. Lots of Asians playing the game. Dice, dominoes, cards and a whole lot of shouting. They looked like they were having a blast. But I had NO IDEA what was going on. Didn't matter. The more I told the story, the more I embellished the ridiculousness of the game. "Seriously, at one point they did a version of the walnut shell game with a real diamond!"

Well, last week the writers on HIMYM did an episode that took place in AC where Barney winds up playing a made-up game with some of his old Asian gambling buddies with ridiculous rules that looked eerily similar to how I described the game I saw. But funnier!

Anyway, the show is great. I was thinking about it because last night's episode contained a video from a pop song that one of the ladies on the show did when she was a teen. It's hysterical and you can see it here. Believe's worth it.

PS - Yes, I did go there. I referenced a previous post of mine that referenced a previous post of mine. I think I just ripped a hole in the space/time continuum. Oh God! I'm such a geek for writing that last line.

Nov 20, 2006

The Biscotti

Hey y'all! This little girl's name to the right is Sammi. She is one of our cats...adorable ain't she?

She got her name because of her messed up left eye. Don't know if you can see it in the picture because I took it with my cell phone camera, but she fought down a raccoon or something when she was a bitty kitten and it healed up a bit glassy.

Hence, Sammi Davis Jr. There's that Gia humor again.

I've been messing with her name since I've met her. It's a long story, but it has gone from Sammi Biscuit to The Biscuit and now to The Biscotti. She answers to all of them.

Oh yeah, right before I took this picture she was asleep between us with one paw on Gia's arm and the other over her eyes. It would have been the cutest picture ever. Goddamn. Camera. Across. The. Room. This is what you get.

You'll get to meet her best friend Syd sometime in the future. He is a lion trapped in a Ragamuffin's body. Rowr.

Nov 18, 2006





Nov 14, 2006

Thrillogy of Terror!

Finishing up our short series of conversations on grand moments at rock concerts. We are up to my experiences at a Radiohead concert that opened up with the Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black.

Great name for a band, eh? For those that don't recall, Karen Black is an actress who played some terrific B movie roles in the 70's. Well, she still does some pretty awful B (and C) films to this day. But most folks remember her from the wonderful Burnt Offerings or the made-for-TV tour-de-force (Wow...lots of dashes there) Trilogy of Terror.

In Trilogy of Terror, she played three, well four, roles in three separate little Horror films. The most well known is the tale of the woman who brought home a Zuni Fetish warrior doll that comes to life and viciously attacks her. It's campy and awesome!

Just like the Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black. Campy and awesome. I had never even heard of them before the concert, so we made our way upstairs to sit down in the balcony for their act. I was with my brother and two of my friends.

So the lights dim and the band comes out. The women on stage (not sure how many) are dressed all in blue with big flower petals around their heads to give the impression that they are playful, colorful flowers dancing around. Weird, but I've seen weird before so I wasn't too interested.

We start chatting about the band, when I take another look at the ladies. I'm now concentrating on exactly what they are wearing when I realize something. They're nekkid!

Well, they are wearing panties and those ridiculous flower head-dress thingies, but mostly they are just painted blue. Now, let me set one thing straight. Most of them are not attractive women. Not at all. Not necessarily un-attractive, just normal women in an abnormal setting.

But semi-naked women at a rock show is something I really don't pass on. So, I get up to go get a closer look. This would involve a trip downstairs and an ample amount of wading through the humanity that was on the floor. Whatever. Naked women, people!

That's when this conversation takes place:

Me: "Um, does anyone, um, like want a beer or something from downstairs?"

My brother: "Sure, but they sell booze up here I think."

Me: "Yeah, I know, but, um, I just wanna stretch my legs a bit, you know...walk around."

Friend1: "We just came up here to sit down because you said you were tired. Didn't we?"

Me: ", right. I dunno...just getting a little antsy, so I figured I would explore. OK? Anyone want a beer?"

My brother: "What's going on?"

Friend2: "I think he just figured out that the disgusting women on stage are kinda naked, and he wants to go check it out."

Friend1 and my brother at the same time: "They're naked??!!"

They practically fall over themselves trying to get out of the seats as they rush down to the floor ahead of me. We leave Friend2 groaning to himself in his seat about our immaturity. And he is, by far, the youngest of us all.

We were just younger in our heads and in our pants. The way it should be.

Good show, though. I think there were songs and stuff. But there was also beer and blue boobies. Good show, indeed!

Nov 11, 2006

Cramped up!

Spent the other night at a lesbian bar, but more on that another time.

Back to our short series of fun moments at rock shows. I think we are up to, yes, The Cramps:

They were playing at CBGB's one night as part of some anniversary celebration. Gotta tell you, nothing brings out the weirdos like a Cramps show at CBGB's. Lots of questionable fishnets and false eyelashes going down, if you know what I mean. The show was great! It was filmed by some independent company to distribute to video, but I've never run across it. A good time was had by all.

At one point during the show, I excused myself from my friends to go to the bar for some more liquid refreshment. I sidled (that's right!) up to the bar next to this mountain of a man. Big dude. Tattoos up and down his arms. Piercings all over his face. Angry look on his face. Wearing a hat that said "Homicide" on it. The wrong guy to mess with.

But I had my drink on, so I say "Hey...nice hat, dude."

He turns and looks down at me with that angry look and says "What did you just say?"

Still undeterred, I repeat myself "NICE HAT, DUDE!"

Then the Grinch transformed right in front of my face. He smiles and says "Thanks! Do you watch the show?"

Now I'm confused. What the hell is he asking? So I ask "What show?"

"Homicide: Life on the Street on NBC" he replies.

"Oh, um, yeah...I've seen it. Good show" I tell him.

"Thanks...we work hard on it" he says. He goes on to tell me that he does some kind of set production or something for the show and he is really proud of it.

Turns out to be the nicest guy in the world. Tells me stories about the cast and the guest stars. Robin Williams was on the pilot episode and he said he spent his entire time on set cracking jokes with the crew. I buy him a beer and we hang out for like a half hour.

When I finally go back to my friends, they tell me that they were watching the whole thing. They thought I was going to get my ass kicked by the biggest dude in the place...and they wanted no part of it. Thanks, guys!

Next: The Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black.

Nov 9, 2006

Sonic, er, Donut

I've been listening to alot of my old music recently. Ever since I bought my iPod and burned a whole shitload of my old CDs onto the 'puter. I can't even begin to tell you the memories that all that great music has brought up to the surface.

Well, maybe I can begin to tell you. So I am going to start a short series of posts where I will go into excruciating detail about stuff that I thought was funny and/or noteworthy at shows I've been to in the past. OK?

Sonic Youth
I was at a Sonic Youth show at the Roseland Ballroom in NYC some time back in the early 90's with my friend Dave and his girlfriend at the time. She was nice. But she wore like a "little black dress" that would have been more appropriate at a lounge or club than a Sonic Youth show. Anyway. Roseland Ballroom is exactly what the name says...a former ballroom. It's got this series of old iron railings around the perimeter of the old dance floor.

We were hanging in the back of the old dance floor...away from the inevitable moshing that was going to take place closer to the stage. This was just after the "Dirty" album came out and Kool Thing, from their previous album "Goo", was probably their biggest "hit".

When they started this one up, Dave's girlfriend was sitting on the old railing hanging onto one its posts. Well, the whole crowd...I mean the WHOLE CROWD...immediately started to mosh together. Even us old farts in the back. We were instantly separated from Dave's girlfriend on the railing by about 50 feet. We were kind of stuck in that old punk paradigm. Everybody moves...nobody gets hurt!

At one point, I took a look back and I see Dave's poor girlfriend hanging on to her post for dear life while the entire audience swirled and moshed around her. Seriously, all I could think of was Billy Crystal up in that small tree in City Slickers during the stampede scene.

After the crowd calmed down, we made our way back to her. She was crying and really fucking pissed.

I don't think that relationship lasted very much longer. Don't worry. Dave's happily married with two little ones. And our moshing days are long gone. Sigh.

Alice Donut
For a few years, CBGB's was a favorite hangout of mine. I would head there after work on a weeknight with a friend of mine just to catch some great music and hang with the weirdos.

On one such evening, a few us us went to go see a NYC punk band called Alice Donut perform. I had one of their albums and I really dug some of their stuff. They had the longest title to a song that I had ever seen. It was called "The Son of a Disgruntled X-Postal Worker Reflects on His Life While Getting Stoned in the Parking Lot Behind a Winn-Dixie While Listening to Metallica as Loud as He Can" or something like that.

Anyway. The show was boss! Everyone was having a great time. Then they took a little break which afforded us some time to booze it up at the bar.

Then we noticed the drummer from the band come in the front entrance holding a trombone high above his head. As he made his way through the crowd, you couldn't help but be drawn to him. He was carrying a freakin' trombone, fer crissakes!

He gets to the stage and the spotlight hits him. Just him. The rest of the band is still on break. He warms up a bit and then he starts to play. Softly at first, but gradually getting louder. We all recognize the tune...and it's AWESOME!

He's doing a solo of "Helter Skelter" by the Beatles! And it kicked ass! When he got to the "Do you don't you want me to love you" section, he was blasting it out...rocking on his heels! I still hear it in my brain whenever I come across the original version.

It was such a weird and wonderfully unexpected moment at an otherwise fairly normal punk show. Love it!

Next: The Cramps and The Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black (intrigued?)

Nov 8, 2006

Dear Slyde

Dear Slyde,

This is an open letter to my good friend, Slyde. How ya doin', buddy?

We chatted about this the other day, but I think its time that you shared some of your more embarrassing moments with the rest of the blog-world. You have so many.

I know that some friends and family of yours visit your site. Tough shit!

Time to fess up. You have sooooo many great stories to share. Embarrassing stories. Funny stories. Stories that make me look foolish and hateful. Share those. So I will start with a teaser. Three stories which I won't go into detail about that you could entertain millions with.

Or just me. Either way.

Here goes:

1. The "Road Rage" incident. Surely THIS one will make me look bad, but hey...its fun.

2. Moriarty. He's evil...and he needs to be discussed. Hard!

3. The "Red Lobster" protocol. Might be my favorite. This one is going to take coaxing from all of you.

Three simple stories. They are his, not don't ask. I was involved in all three, but Slyde was the protagonist. He is the only one who can share. So really...don't ask.

OK...ask. But ask Slyde. Hehehehehehe!

Nov 4, 2006

Rage against machines

I know that it's Saturday, and there appears to be some kind of unwritten Blogger rule against new posts on the weekend. Maybe folks actually have lives. Go figure. Not me. Just sitting at Gia's watching Notre Dame vs North Carolina and I felt like posting.

Anyway, I have this odd anti-fascination with anything new. I'm still running an ancient PC via phone line. I drive an old car. I was the last kid on my block to buy a cell phone with a camera. New technology has never really had a hold on me.

But it wasn't until the other day that I decided to join the rest of the modern world and buy an iPod. Yup. It's over for me. The straw that broke the proverbial camel's back was the long flights to and fro Las Vegas. Sure, we flew Jet Blue so we had TV to watch, but as I looked around I noticed that 80% of my fellow passengers were happily spending the flight listening to their favorite tunes.

So I went and bought an iPod Nano the other day. Grey, if you must know. It's very itty-bitty. Can't believe that it can hold around 1000 songs. I don't even think there are 1000 songs that I like!

So I spent the evening last night (after Gia went to sleep) burning all my CDs into iTunes and creating playlists and generally having fun. I haven't even listened to anything yet, and I had a blast. I copied over 600 tunes on to this little credit-card sized thing and I still have plenty to go.

Now, I'm on the iTunes website buying songs left and right. See...this is what I feared. I still haven't even really played with my toy yet and I'm hooked.

Next: Tivo! (that was for Slyde)