Aug 31, 2010

Bourbon, sweatpants and more meatballs

I don't follow the "Shit My Dad Says" Twitter feed, or at least I didn't until yesterday. But Gia has been reading Justin Halpern's book of the same name on her Kindle the past couple of days and she is literally laughing out loud while doing so. She will often call me to wherever she is just to read me one or two funny lines that she thinks I would enjoy. Stuff like:

On shopping for presents for his birthday: "If it's not bourbon or sweatpants, it's going in the garbage. No, don't get creative. Now is not a creative time. Now is a bourbon and sweatpants time."


On understanding one's place in the food chain: "Your mother made a batch of meatballs last night. Some are for you, some are for me, but more are for me. Remember that. More. Me."

That's the kinda simple wisdom I can wrap my head around. Bourbon, sweatpants and more meatballs.

William Shatner is going to be starring in a TV Series on CBS based on the Twitter feed and the book, except it's gonna be called $#*! My Dad Says, pronounced like "{Bleep} My Dad Says". Sigh. I don't know if it will be a hit or not, but I'm willing to give it a try. The source material is funny enough that it should carry it at least for a half season or so. And the guy who gave us Cheers is involved, so that's a bonus.

Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. If I could, I'd be wearing sweatpants and drinking bourbon while eating meatballs every day.

Aug 30, 2010

Hurricane Earl

Ladies and gentlemen, prepare to batten down the hatches. Here comes Hurricane Earl.

Right now it looks like the Eastern seaboard could be spared. Projections have it skimming the coast or moving safely out to sea in the North Atlantic. But it's early and it's hard to tell exactly.

It's not every year that a hurricane is named after my fake screen persona. On this 5th anniversary of the tragic events surrounding Hurricane Katrina's landfall on the Gulf Coast, let's hope we all make it through this one safely.

Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. "Hurricane Earl blew iiiiin." < - Slyde will get this.

Aug 27, 2010


So I was reading about these odd galaxies out there that are mighty old. Older than our own corner of the universe. And they've got these ultraviolet rings of light that make them seem younger than they actually are. I don't understand any of that.

In fact, I have a hard time comprehending our own planet...let alone the solar system or our galaxy or the universe itself. And what if our universe isn't the only universe? What if our reality, our universe, is just a teensy tiny part of a much larger multi-verse? It boggles the mind. Or my mind, at least.

I try to be a learned man, and I understand my place in the cosmos. It's the actual comprehension of that knowledge that eludes me. I start to think about it. Me...on this tiny planet circling this enormous star that, in fact, is just a tiny star. One of billions in our galaxy. Which is one of what? Billions of other galaxies, maybe. That's where it goes ka-phlooey.

In my juvenile mind, I used to think that there was maybe a dozen galaxies floating around out there. Andromeda...that's a galaxy, right? I knew about that one. But how many other galaxies can there actually be? How much space is there

So I went to look up how many galaxies we have actually discovered. I was thinking maybe a couple of hundred. That seemed about right to me. I mean, they are so far away. Gotta be hard to tag and identify each one of these things. So how many do you think we have identified so far? 100? 500? 1,000? Try closer to 15,000.

And that's just a drop in the bucket, my tiny friends. Just the tiniest fraction of what might be out there. Recent estimates bring the total number of galaxies in the universe at somewhere around 125 billion.

That's 125,000,000,000 to put it another way. And each one of those 125,000,000,000 galaxies contains billions and billions of stars. Some of them just like our own tiny star.

I stand in the backyard at night looking up at the stars and I think about this...and then I get dizzy and I fall down. And it (generally) has nothing to do with what I've had to drink that evening.

Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. But how many of those other planets circling those stars in those galaxies in the universe have bacon? Hmmm?

Aug 26, 2010

Booze Nooze

See what I did there?

Anyway, I think I've got a new favorite cocktail. I first read about it on a week or so ago, but I read a lot of stuff about cocktails and I never go about making them. But this one seemed easy. Really easy...and that's just the way I like my cocktails.

It's a Re-engineered Bourbon and Coke, and it's fantastic!

Looks good, right?

I decided to give it a try because Gia's sister was up visiting this past weekend and she is a big fan of bourbon cocktails, but not a big fan of carbonation. And this particular recipe takes the carbonation out of the coke by cooking it down.

It uses a simple syrup made from Coca-Cola, some bitters and your favorite whiskey. I actually used Jack Daniels because I thought the smoky/charcoal flavor would go well with the syrup and bitters.

And, of course, I was right. Here's what you do:

Coca-Cola Simple Syrup
1 part Coca-Cola
1 part sugar

Put both ingredients in a small pot and heat until the sugar dissolves in the soda and it just begins to boil. Don't walk away from this, okay? Let it cool to room temperature and then store it in the fridge where it will keep for around 2 weeks.

The Cocktail
2 oz whiskey (use whatever you like)
1/4 oz syrup (see above)
2 dashes of bitters
Twist of lemon for the garnish

Add the first three ingredients into a shaker with some ice. Shake that ass! Then pour into a martini glass or a cocktail glass or a coffee mug and garnish with the lemon twist. I like to serve it in a martini glass that has been chilled in the freezer, but do whatever you want. Make it your own. I use closer to 3 oz of booze and 1/2 oz of syrup. I may actually use an extra dash of bitters too. I like bitters. You got a problem with that?

It's a sweet, smoky, lemony, boozy delicious thing.

Just enjoy the hell out of it, okay?  And give thanks to Stephen Dennison over at, because he's the one who deserves it.
Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. You know you wanna make this.

Aug 25, 2010

Moving Day


Not for Gia and I, but her folks are moving to SC on Wednesday. So I gotta be on my game for helping with the move and such. See y'all on the flip side.

Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. Oh, how I hate a moving day.

Aug 24, 2010

Here's something I don't understand.

Breakfast blend coffee.

I guess it's supposed to be a mellower blend of coffee. Something that won't offend our delicate palates early in the morning. A lighter, less acidic beverage for the early morning tastebuds.

Fuck that shit.

The only time I want a mellower cup of coffee is about ten minutes before bedtime. In the morning I want the hi-octane shit. Something to get my synapses firing, if ya know what I mean. What the hell is a "breakfast blend" good for anyway? Lulling you back to sleep?

That's just a half-ass cup o' joe, in my opinion.

Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. Don't get me started on decaf.

Aug 23, 2010

Earl's favorite film scenes: Volume VI

This one is a long one, but it's so worth it to see horror master John Carpenter at the top of his game. Starting in 1978 with Halloween, Carpenter was butter...because he was on a roll. The Fog and Escape From New York followed, and each was awesome in their own ways. But he really climbed the heights of the horror genre with his remake of The Thing in 1982.  In a lot of ways, I think it might be his best film.  Ah...I don't know, but it's close.

The great old-school special effects by Rob Bottin were something back in the early 80's, and surprisingly they still hold up today.  I definitely prefer it to some of the CGI/3-D crap going on these days.  Enjoy!

Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. I'd rather not spend the rest of this winter TIED TO THIS FUCKING COUCH!

Aug 20, 2010

Making the dough

click for full effect

clicken to biggen
See that big handsome fella up there messing with the dough? That's Gia's father, during his time in the Army in 1965. The reason for the baseball glove is that he was signed with the NY Yankees at the time and some Army reporter was doing a piece on him and his stint at Fort Gordon. It may have just been the photo and a quick blurb.  You can read the blurb on the back of the photo over there on the right.

That was something that the Yankees did during the Vietnam War. They would arrange a safe assignment for their players who found themselves draft eligible so that they wouldn't get hurt fighting in the war. Gia's father wound up in the kitchen, a learning experience that helped him out later on in life when he and his family opened up a restaurant that they ran for 15 years or so. 

Unfortunately, he still got injured during his time in the Army.  Every day they had to exercise and train and during the drills one morning he tore something in his shoulder.  So at 22, his pitching career was basically over without ever making it to the big leagues.  But he had some great times with the Yankees in the minors and during Spring Training. Got to hang out and play ball with Mickey Mantle, Roger Maris and Whitey Ford.  Threw batting practice to Joe DiMaggio (I can't even imagine...).  Pitched an exhibition game at Yankee Stadium.  Went 24-11 with a 2.60 ERA while in the minors in places like Fort Lauderdale, FL, Idaho Falls, ID and Columbus, GA.  Was proud to call Roy White, Bobby Murcer, Mel Stottlemyre and a bunch of others friends.  Beat future Hall of Famer Ferguson Jenkins just about every time he faced him.  Good times.

Next week, he and Gia's mother are moving away to South Carolina.  We are gonna miss both of them.
Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. Seriously...Joe DiMaggio walked up to him after practice one day and said "Hey Bob, throw me a few".  I would have crapped myself.

Aug 19, 2010


I rediscovered Pandora, an internet radio site, yesterday. And I couldn't be more thrilled.

Back when I first heard about it a year ago or so, I dabbled a bit. The idea is that you plug in an artist you like, and you can create a channel that plays similar music or music from similar artists. Hard to tell the difference sometimes. I didn't really go any further though, because I generally don't like to keep music playing on my laptop while I'm doing other things. I can have music on in the background on an iPod or stereo or TV, but having it on in the background on the computer itself bothers me a bit. Maybe because the speakers on my laptop aren't that great to begin with.


Yesterday I found that Pandora was offered as a channel on our Roku player, a wireless device hooked up to our television - mostly used to play Netflix Instant streaming titles. It's a free service and the setup was no hassle at all. After setting up a new "channel" on the Pandora site with artists like The Kings of Leon, Tom Waits, Loudon Wainwright III and Bruce Springsteen (for Gia), I was off and running.

I listened to it in the background most of the day while I was working and I was really impressed with the artists and songs that the site picked for us. Some of them were very well-known while others were obscure as all hell. Citizen Cope, Todd Snider, Ramblin' Jack Elliot, John Prine, etc..

I think I've finally found "it" after all these years. A place, gasp, where I can listen to new* music. Amazing!

Do you do Pandora? Maybe you should.

*new to me, at least

UPDATE: I just found out that Pandora is only free for the first 40 hours of use each month.  After that it's $0.99 for unlimited play for the rest of the month.  Still a pretty good deal. - Earl
Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. Bring on the new stuff!

Aug 18, 2010


Here's a question for you Brits out there? Or you Americans with a Netflix account. Or you Canadians who bathe. get my point.

Is the Primeval series worth watching?

The first three seasons are available on Netflix streaming and I added them as an afterthought ("Dinosaurs in modern times? Sure...") a month or so ago when it came across my radar.

I watched the first couple of episodes last night and I thought it was just okay. Nothing grabbed me in that special place that I like to have grabbed, if ya know what I mean. So far, they say "anomaly" a lot. I dig the concept, but it kinda feels like a cheap SciFi Channel offering. Sorry...SyFy. Ugh.

But for those of you who have watched it, does it get any better? Or should I pull out before I get it pregnant?


Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. It's a Gorgonopsid, stupid!.

Aug 17, 2010

Pirate Swing

My brother-in-law is MacGyver. He can build or fix anything. When he got back from Aruba with my sister and my nephew a few weeks ago, he told us of this great rope swing they played with on a replica pirate ship. A pirate swing, if you will. They had a blast doing it, even if they couldn't quite get the backflip off the swing down pat.

So we are sitting around in their backyard a couple of weeks ago and he's looking at the trees in their back yard overlooking their pool. Now, imagine this...the in-ground pool is surrounded on two sides by a three-foot rock wall. Over that wall on one end is a wooden bridge. Beyond the bridge is a koi pond with a three-level waterfall about 12-feet high cascading into the pond. And a thick layer of trees envelops the whole thing. It's like swimming in a rain forest.

So my brother-in-law takes this all in as if for the first time and sees it. A rope swing from the bridge by the koi pond into the pool. And he's off to the garage where he just happens to have some industrial strength rope lying around. The kind tug boats use to pull freighters and ocean liners. After a series of complicated maneuvers using lighter rope and some weights, he gets a rope swing rigged up. From at least 30 feet up in the trees!

It took him a couple of weeks of tinkering to perfect it all, but he's finally got it down. Now weekends at their house are spent soaring through the air before splashing down in cool water.!

And one of my nieces, the littlest peanut of them all, was brave enough and light enough and athletic enough to pull off the scary back-flip that seems to elude the rest of us. She went swinging through the air and flipped over about 8 feet over the water while screaming with joy. Accomplishing what her older male cousins were too afraid to even try. She rocks so much! As of right now, only she and my brother-in-law have pulled it off. But there are a still a few precious weeks left in the summer.

Me? I was happy just perfecting my cannonball.

OK, we weren't jumping into a pristine lake with mountains in the background. But it kinda felt like we were.

Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. Pure joy.

Aug 16, 2010

Down is Up

Up is down.

Turns out that my favorite dinosaur*, good old Triceratops, may have never existed.

Well, that's not really true. He, or she if you prefer, definitely did exist. But he was probably just a juvenile version of another dinosaur called Torosaurus. Or so says the Ross Gellar-types that are trying to convince us about their findings.

It's like my whole world is crashing down around me! I don't know what to believe in anymore! I'll just let Dr. Peter Venkman tell you how I feel.  Mass hysteria, indeed.

*You don't have a favorite dinosaur?  I pity you.
Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. Actually, it will still be called Triceratops if this goes down. It will be the name Torosaurus that will go away. Good riddance!

Aug 14, 2010

Beer Fest

Here's what I'm doing today. 50 Brewers and over 100 beers available. Doing it VIP-style on maybe the nicest day of the year at one of the nicest locations on the island.

How about you?

Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. Jealous much?

Aug 13, 2010

Friday left me fumblin' with the blues...

Thanks for the feedback yesterday. My decision has been made (simple). I'm going to start doing regular weekly features right here on The Verdant Dude. Look for a schedule of upcoming events later in the month. I'm going to start/re-start the new features in September.

So until then, there's this...

Fumblin' With the Blues
Tom Waits

Friday left me fumblin' with the blues
And it's hard to win when you always lose
Because the nightspots spend your spirit
Beat your head against the wall
Two dead ends and you've still got to choose

You know the bartenders
They all know my name
And they catch me when I'm pulling up lame
And I'm a pool-shooting-shimmy-shyster shaking my head
When I should be living clean instead

You know the ladies I've been seeing off and on
Well they spend your love and then they're gone
You can't be lovin' someone who is savage and cruel
Take your love and then they leave on out of town
No they do

Well now fallin' in love is such a breeze
But its standin' up that's so hard for me
I wanna squeeze you but I'm scared to death I'd break your back
You know your perfume
Well it won't let me be

You know the bartenders all know my name
And they catch me when I'm pulling up lame
And I'm a pool-shooting-shimmy-shyster shaking my head
When I should be living clean instead

Come on baby
Let your love light shine
Gotta bury me inside of your fire
Because your eyes are 'nough to blind me
You're like a-looking at the sun
You gotta whisper tell me I'm the one
Come on and whisper tell me I'm the one
Gotta whisper tell me I'm the one
Come on and whisper tell me I'm the one

Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. Let your love light shine.

Aug 12, 2010

Still Only 25¢

So yesterday's post about Josh Wilker's Cardboard Gods blog got me to thinking, and that's never good for anyone.

I was thinking about doing a regular feature here or starting a new blog using one issue of a comic-book from my youth (probably from 1972 - 1978) as the basis for each blog post. It would be incredibly derivative of what Wilker does on his site, but I'd probably be able to sleep at nights. I even have an idea for a masthead if I decide to create a new blog specifically for this that would riff on the Marvel Comics covers from the spring/summer of 1976 like this one:

But here is my dilemma: I already contribute to a movie blog that I haven't kept up with AND a beer blog that has slowly faded away. Do I start yet another blog in the hopes that I won't grow to ignore it as much as I've ignored these others? I simply assimilate all these blogs into The Verdant Dude? Like the Borg.

I could do weekly or monthly regular features like movie reviews or beer reviews or the new 70's comic-book feature or all three. Maybe the 1st Monday of each month for movies, the 2nd for beer and so on. I could arrange the whole thing in categories posted on my sideboard. I could finally become organized!

Phew! Sounds like a lot of work.

I dunno. What do YOU think? If someone keeps multiple blogs, are you just as likely to find their content as those who keep everything in one place? In the feed reader world I would think it would be easy to find the content no matter where it is, but there are bloggers whose main blog is on my feed reader but not their side-project blogs. So I dunno. A dilemma.

Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. Now I'm having issues uploading pictures to Blogger. Sheesh!  Is it just me or is it Blogger in Draft?

Aug 11, 2010

Cardboard Gods

I just finished reading the most interesting book. Well, it was interesting to me because it was one of those things that you read sometimes that feels like it was written by you. And by "you" I mean "me".

Cardboard Gods by Josh Wilker refers to the author's baseball heroes found on trading cards in plastic packs with a stick of gum, but it's really about growing up in the 1970's and beyond. The baseball cards themselves, although extremely important to the author, are a device. Something to pull the narrative along. And it's a fascinating tale, told by someone growing up around the same time as yours truly.

The book grew out of the Cardboard Gods website that Mr. Wilker has been running for a while now.  I believe most of the chapters were blog entries at some point and the book was arranged in chronological order afterward, but I can't be entirely sure.  There is definitely some new stuff in there.

I didn't collect baseball cards when I was a kid.  I was familiar with them through friends and some cousins, but I was more into comic-books.  But I didn't really collect those either.  I didn't bag them with cardboard backing, no sir.  I read them.  Sometimes I rolled them up and stuck them in my back pocket before riding my bike to a friend's house.  The comic-books from my childhood were dog-eared, tattered, wonderful things. 

I didn't keep any of them.  When I grew to an age when superheroes were no longer part of my life, I threw them away.  Or gave them away.  It wasn't until many years later that I regretted both the handling of those treasures and the eventual disposal of them.  I used to go to comic-book conventions or stores, looking through back issue bins and I would get so angry when I ran across something that I owned and mistreated as a child.   Maybe a Giant-Size X-Men #1 or the incredible Marvel/DC crossover Superman vs. the Amazing Spider-Man (the Battle of the Century!).

But now that I look back, I think I enjoyed them as a child should enjoy comic-books.  I remember nights when I would grab an old issue of The Fantastic Four or Iron Man or Marvel Team-Up, and I would fall asleep while re-living the heroic acts contained within.  Sometimes I fell asleep clutching the fragile issue in my hands, awaking the next day to see it a little worse for wear with no regrets.  To me, that's what comic-books were all about as a child.

Josh Wilker knew that same magic.  Instead of superheroes in comic-books, his gods were real.  Captured for a brief moment in a goofy pose on a trading card.

Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. Hey...I've got an idea.

Aug 10, 2010

Twitter gave my laptop an STD

OK, it really wasn't Twitter that did the deed.

But I followed a link from someone or other's Twitter feed to a photo that they wanted to share or something, and THAT site (whatever it was) gave my laptop a little sumpin' sumpin' that it didn't ask for. And before anyone asks, it wasn't from any of the dozen or so people that I follow on Twitter. I was bored and just following one feed to another to another to another and it happened from there.

Has this ever happened to anyone else out there?*

Because it's happened to me before.  Exactly like this.  Following a link to another site from someone's Twitter feed. Well, the other times my anti-virus software caught it before it had a chance to do any damage. But this time I stepped away from my computer for a few moments and when I came back there was this AntiVir Solutions Pro (no link provided for obvious reasons) scam running. It pretends to be a real anti-virus program and claims to identify a bunch of viruses and/or malware files and then directs you to a website to purchase their upgraded software.

Part of it's charm is fucking with the startup programs on your computer, so it made it seem like any of them that were trying to run were infected by one or many viruses.  More of a pain in the ass than harmful from what I've read at least, but annoying as all hell.  Took me a couple of hours of running anti-virus and anti-malware programs to get rid of the beast finally and give the rest of my system a clean bill of health.

I don't know why my anti-virus software, my recently updated anti-virus software, didn't catch this.  From what I've read, this particular bit of malware has become very common in the past month or so.  Ugh...sucky people suck so much.

This is exactly why I'm not a Twitter guy.**

*Before any of you Mac users respond with "Well I use a Mac and we don't get computer viruses", let me just respond with this:  Plllbbbthbbbttt!!!

**That's not EXACTLY the reason.

Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. Evil people are in the cloud.  Watch yer ass!

Aug 9, 2010

Getting there

I hate the act of getting from point A to point B. It's just so bothersome. Especially if there are factors involved that are totally out of one's control. Traffic, weather delays, equipment problems, lost luggage...whatever. It just sucks.

Case in point.

On Saturday morning, while all the cool kids were hanging at BlogHer, I headed into NYC to attend a baseball statistics and analysis event hosted by the kids at FanGraphs.  At heart, I'm really just a baseball geek...okay?  And it was really very interesting and informative, if you're into that kind of thing.  But this is about my trip into the city that day, not the baseball stuff.

I live about an hour east of NYC on Long Island and the most convenient way to get into the city is via the Long Island Rail Road.  Driving in on a Saturday morning is probably more direct, but I try to avoid driving into the city when I don't really have to.  So I decided on the train this Saturday.  A 7:03AM train that would get me into the city in plenty of time to take a leisurely stroll up to 59th Street where the event was being held starting at 9AM.  I love the city on summer mornings. It's usually not too warm and there is no one around.  Great for stretching the legs and taking in the city while enjoying a cup of coffee.

The lovely and talented Gia offered to drop me off at the station, which is about 7-10 minutes from our home, so I wouldn't need to leave my car there.  I was heading out east later in the day to my sister's house for a pool hangout/party and I could just take the LIRR out there where Gia was already going to be, so it just seemed logical to me to leave the car at home.  No sense in bringing two cars out east, right?

Well, and this is hard to believe, I was almost late to the 7:03AM train because of a bull frog.  Yeah.  We were running exactly on time when the car in front of us stopped in the middle of the road for reasons we couldn't understand.  Then the driver got out and held up a finger for us to wait a moment.  Puzzled, we looked as he hurried to the front of his car to shoo a bull frog, the biggest fucking bullfrog I have ever seen, across the road.  It was actually kinda sweet, but something we didn't really have time for.  After he got moving again, we made it to the station with about 1 minute to go.  I grabbed my ticket from the machine and hurried up the stairs and across the track to the train that I was sure was going to leave just as I got there.

It didn't.  It didn't leave at all.  The train was canceled.  What?  They can DO that?  Apparently they can.  You see, there was some track work being done overnight and one of the workers cut a power line that is needed to make the choo-choo run about 15 miles down the tracks.  Crap.  The next train, due to be on-time, was set to leave at 7:36AM.  Fine.  I was gonna have to haul ass to get uptown by 9AM from Penn Station instead of enjoying my leisurely stroll.  Stinks, but what are you gonna do?  I've hardly ever had a problem with the LIRR before, so I guess it was just a random crazy event.

But right before I got on the 7:36AM train, I heard from an LIRR employee that there may be additional delays down the line.  Maybe an additional 45 minutes to an hour!  But he really had no idea.  So I stood there with one foot on the train and one foot on the platform.  Do I take my chances with the train or do I grab a taxi back home and just drive into the city?  I'd probably be late to the event if I chose the latter, but it looked like I was gonna be late either way.  So, grudgingly, I stepped on the train.

I think I would have been fine if I just KNEW what was going on.  But the updates we got were sparse and incomplete.  Maybe delays up ahead, maybe nothing.  No one knew.  Or they knew and they just weren't saying.  So I let my buddy, who was meeting me at the event, know that I was probably going to be late and that I would meet him and his son inside.

Turns out there was a delay, but it wasn't as long as I feared...even if it was long enough to make me late to the event.  It didn't help matters we had another delay when we pulled into Jamaica station.  I look out the window and I see an NYPD officer heading to the car behind me with his hand on his gun.  Apparently, there as a crazy drunk dude (at 8:45AM!) in the next car and he was being...well, a crazy drunk dude.  He needed to be escorted off.  What else could possibly go wrong?  A swarm of locust?

But I made it to the event...finally.  A half-hour late, but I made it to the event.  After the delay for the crazy drunk dude, I just decided to mellow out and take it all in stride.  I didn't hurry.  I grabbed some coffee.  And I found my way to the subway, not even stressing one bit when it took 10 minutes for the right one to show up.

Bull frogs, equipment failure and a crazy drunk dude weren't going to ruin my day.

Except that they kinda did for a while.

Oh, and that dude across the way from me on the train who sat on the aisle with your bag next to you leaving the window seat open who grumbled when a woman asked to get to that window seat and then you grudgingly stood up so she could wrestle past you instead of just sliding over for her?  Yeah...fuck you!

Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. I should have just driven.

Aug 6, 2010

Oh Lord

For Adam. Who I met for the first time yesterday. And he didn't smell too bad either. Not too bad.

Even better was meeting Faiqa for the first ime.  She smelled real nice.
Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. I can't smell shit.

Aug 5, 2010


So I was reading something or other last night with the TV on in the background on mute. I usually don't do that. When I read, I like to read. No distractions. But I wasn't reading anything important and the Yankee game was on, or so I thought. I actually had the wrong channel on, so ESPN was going instead. Whatever.

I looked up at one point and I saw the strangest thing. A dude wrestling with a huge catfish in some lake or river. Took me all of 1 second to put down what I was reading and re-wind to the beginning of the segment to see what I was missing.

It's called noodling, by some. You go down into a river or lake and you root around underneath rocks and logs to find catfish and you wrestle them out of the water with your bare hands. Seriously. And other stuff lives in those nooks and crannies. Like poisonous snakes, alligators or beavers who will BITE YOUR FREAKING FACE OFF! And those aren't the only dangers.  A number of noodlers each year will drown during their battle with the big fish.  Or by having a piece of clothing snag on a rock or downed limb.

My favorite part of the feature was about Lee McFarlin's daughter.  A young woman who took up noodling when not very many women were.  She proved her mettle by catching a 52-pounder!  And her father talked about how his father (a great old character) thought that women shouldn't go noodling, but after her big catch he changed his mind.  "I didn't think she'd be that stupid" the old man laughed.  Ha!

I'm a little torn on this one.  Whenever I see or read about man killing animals for sport or food, I feel a twinge of guilt.  Then again...catfish tastes gooooood.  And I guess it's more sporting to go after that food with your bare hands than a rod and reel.  I can't imagine how difficult this must be.  I've caught a few catfish with a rod and reel and those bastards are fighters.  Catching them with your bare hands, at the sizes up to and over 100 pounds, must be insane!

Another thing is that noodling is illegal throughout much of the country.  There is some environmental concerns, but it also sounds like it might be just a bunch of politics.  I don't know.  Have to look into it a little more to be sure.

All of it's right here on the embedded video.  Enjoy!

Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. Wanna noodle with me?

Aug 4, 2010

1, 2, 3...Action!

For those of us who are or at one time were comic-book collectors (or just reading for the fun of it), there is a Holy Grail. Something that we've all dreamed of finding in a dusty attic or basement at a relative's house or something. A copy of Action Comics #1 - the very first appearance of Superman.

He couldn't fly back then, by the way.
OK, I'm not nor was I ever a big fan of the Big Blue Boy Scout.  That didn't stop me from daydreaming about finding a copy of Action #1 hidden behind a panel in a closet somewhere.  I'd rather it be a copy of Detective Comics #27, but whatever.  Dreams are what comic-books are all about.  They never come true, though.  Right?


A family facing an imminent threat of foreclosure on their home stumbled upon a rare find in their basement.  That's right...a copy of Action #1. Not in great condition, but good enough to solve their foreclosure woes. 

Dreams do come true.

Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. I never find anything good in the basement...ever.

Aug 3, 2010

The Secret Ingredient.

I'm a fan of Mark Dacascos. Sure, he's done some silly things in his career like Double Dragon or The Crow television series.  Most of that can be forgiven though for just being involved with something like Brotherhood of the Wolf.  That was a great flick!  But a quick look at his IMDB page will show a rather silly resume.

But his silliest role by far was assuming the mantle of The Chairman in Iron Chef America.  His biggest job on the show each week is to introduce the secret ingredient in a flamboyant, poncy manner.  Always worth a smile.  Some enterprising soul has compiled all of these secret ingredient introductions, and I've watched it about 5 times so far.  I'm not done by a long-shot either.  Enjoy!

Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. My favorite one is beer.  Obviously..

Aug 2, 2010

Shark Week(end)

One of my sillier fears is the one I have about swimming in the ocean. Or the bay. Or a lake. Pretty much any body of water that contains any kind of fishies swimming below the surface. I just don't feel comfortable knowing that something is down there...maybe waiting to attack. But swimming in the ocean is really where this phobia kicks into full-gear.

Maybe it's because Jaws came out in 1975 when I was 8. Just around the time that I was supposed to be enjoying my summers on Long Island. Swimming in the ocean that summer was just ridiculous. All someone had to do was yell "Jaws!!!" and we kids would run terrified out of the waves.

I forget exactly which comedian told this joke, but I've always remembered it. He said that it really didn't matter whether it was a great white shark or a 2-inch piece of seaweed...he's running out the the water like a scared child either way. That's me.

I've read everything there is to know about sharks and shark attacks, and I know the odds of being the victim of a shark attack are slim to none. Doesn't matter. I calmly explain that MY chance of getting attacked by a shark is 0.00%. Because I just don't go swimming in the ocean.

But that's not exactly true. I usually run into the water and dive under a wave before running back to shore at least once when I go to the beach. I'll stand there with the waves lapping at my ankles before I spot the perfect, most innocent looking wave to dive under. It all lasts about 15 seconds and I'm done. Happy to have oh-so-briefly conquered that little fear. 

So on Sunday, while at the beach with Gia, my sister and my brother-in-law, I went for my little victory dive into the ocean. Now, everyone knows about my stupid phobia. So it was with a chuckle that I walked up to the waves as my brother-in-law said "watch out for the sharks". Hehehe....right.

So I'm standing there, knee-deep in the water looking for the perfect wave when I hear a whistle blowing. Haha...very funny. I get it. Shark in the water. Not falling for that one. Then I look to my right and I see everyone running out of the water with some urgency. I turn around and the lifeguard is pointing right at me telling me to get out of the water. Which I promptly do.

It takes me a second to spot it, but about twenty yards away near a sandbar I spot the tell-tale black fin. Looked pretty big from my vantage on shore too. Now I had heard of a few beaches closed on Cape Cod in Massachusetts the week before due to shark sightings, but I had never been on a beach on Long Island that was ever closed because of sharks. But there we were.

And the beach remained closed to swimmers for the next two hours as well. The Coast Guard and the local police had helicopters running up and down the beach looking to confirm that the shark or sharks had split. I dunno if they ever let anyone back in the water, because we left to get some food.

There was talk of it maybe being a sunfish, but the dorsal fin wasn't flipping back and forth in a lazy manner like they do. It was cutting through the waves fairly straight-forward. And one of the lifeguards claimed to have gotten a pretty good look at it. The water was nice and clear yesterday. He said it was really big and slow-moving, so the talk was that it was maybe a basking shark. A filter-feeder and harmless to swimmers. Fairly common in the waters off of Long Island, but I don't know if they often swim in the shallows like this one was.

Who knows? All I know is that only I can have one my infrequent battles with my shark phobia interrupted by an actual fucking shark!

Shit like that just doesn't happen to anyone else! Ugh.

Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. You people in Florida aren't allowed to make fun of me because you swim with sharks all the time.  I can't help it if you are stupid.