Sunday, September 30, 2007

Ribs at Famous Dave's

My daughter loves ribs.

Two and a half months ago, Famous Dave's set up a ribs stand in South Center, and Harper hungrily devoured three complimentary ribs standing on the sidewalk in front of Old Navy. She has asked me frequently since that time to take her to Famous Dave's for ribs.

This week they finally opened. No sooner had I gotten back from six days in Dallas than we were at their crowded door with our bibs on.

I was pleased that they offered sweetened iced tea and a variety of barbecue items, salads and sandwiches; my daughter wanted ribs. She wanted lots of them and she wanted them now.

When the waitress came around, Harper ordered: a full rack of ribs, corn on the cob, drunken apples, corn muffins and a basket of Famous Dave's fries. (The potato salad came with the ribs but I ate that).

Harper also consumed two root beers. Our waitress was so impressed with her ability to inhale the twenty-four dollar rib platter that Harper was brought at root beer float on the house, which she finished in its entirety.

Tonight is Book Club. All the ladies are coming over and we've got to be scarce.

"You want to go to the movies?" I asked my daughter.

"I want to go to Famous Dave's," she replied, conspiratorially.

Looks like ribs again. Heads up, Dave, she's coming back for more.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Final USC at LSU Game and 2008 Presidential Campaign Update


LSU 28
USC 16

Presidential Candidate FRED THOMPSON, in Die Hard 2:

"We just bought ourselves, maybe, two hours. After that, those planes that are low on fuel aren't gonna be circling. They're gonna be dropping on the White House lawn."

Fourth Quarter USC at LSU Game and 2008 Presidential Campaign Update

My predition was LSU by 18. With half a quarter to go in the game:

LSU 28
USC 10

Democratic Activist AL SHARPTON, on Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney:

"As for the one Mormon running for office, those who really believe in God will defeat him anyway."

Third Quarter USC at LSU Game and 2008 Presidential Campaign Update

I appears that once feathers are ruffled they are easier to pluck. At the end of the third quarter:

LSU 28

Presidential Candidate BARACK OBAMA, to poor farmers in Adel, Iowa:

"Anybody gone into Whole Foods lately and see what they charge for arugula?"

Second Quarter USC at LSU Game and 2008 Presidential Campaign Update

LSU leading with under two minutes remaining in the half.

LSU 21

Presidential Candidate RUDY GIULIANI, on what can't happen:

"You know, in the horror movie you kill the monster, and the hand re-emerges. And if you're not looking, the hand grows back and then the monster's there again. That cannot be allowed to happen."

First Quarter USC at LSU Game and 2008 Presidential Campaign Update

South Carolina at Baton Rouge, with 1:16 left in the first quarter:


Presidential Candidate HILARY CLINTON:

"I have to confess that it's crossed my mind that you could not be a Republican and a Christian."

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Ten Questions

Found this on Rick’s blog and, though I have not been officially “tagged,” thought I’d take a crack at these questions, since I am a couple of tags behind:

1. What were you doing 10 years ago?
Living on the other coast, selling Ethernet stuff, launching experimental flying machines with my friend Tim

2. What were you doing one year ago?
Just about the same things I am doing now, but going to many more baseball games

3. What are five snacks you enjoy?
popcorn & goobers (movies only), butter pecan ice cream, cracked wheat crackers and Havarti, chips, the odd leftover slice of pizza late at night

4. What are five songs that you know the lyrics to?
Solsbury Hill/Peter Gabriel, Zak and Sara/Ben Folds, Daniel/Elton John, She’s Gone/Hall & Oates, Lead Me On/Amy Grant

5. Name five things you would do if you were a millionaire.
take a trip, start a business, move, upgrade to HD-DVD AND Blue-Ray, start a charity

6. Name five bad habits.
eating poorly, not getting enough sleep, avoiding my dentist, avoiding the unpleasant items on my to-do list, accumulating junk

7. What are five things you like to do?
hanging out with my daughter, going to film festivals, traveling, listening to live music, attending Steve Johnson Fan Club conventions

8. What are your five favourite toys?
desk dartboard, my chicken jet, my computer, my Treo (Atari game card only), Steve Johnson action figure

9. What are five things you would never wear?
overalls, leather pants, feather boa, spats, a gold medallion ala Al Sharpton circa 1986

10. Name five things you hate to do.
have blood drawn, plunge the toilet, fly standby, fire someone, vomit

Listening to Ben Folds

I watched Ben Folds backed up by a full orchestra tonight, and though much of his material readily lends itself to full orchestral accompaniment ("Smoke" and "Goodnight," a lullaby, were superb), a few songs, "Zak and Sara" in particular, did not quite jell. Still, an enjoyable hour while I popped around the web booking airline tickets.

I have a slew of travel coming up between now and the end of the year. Also, I booked some travel for the wife. On a whim I requested wheelchair and a kosher meal for her (while she is flying without me). Funny.

Dallas, Chicago, Tampa, Orlando, Denver and Columbia are on my itinerary for the remainder of the year.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

An Odd Message

With apologies to Dan at work:

I uncovered this old telephone message for Dan taken by the security supervisor written on a pink message pad, which was apparently never given to Dan. The message, while inexplicable, made me curious and also made me laugh.

It also made me wonder if Dan was Scottish.

This is what the message said:

Gilbert Goodsmith called 206-555-1571 on 05-02-2007 Message: Concerning the delivery of your short Klip Beaver for Kilt.
Have a great day.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Nothing Much

I had a few things to say yesterday about 9/11, but watching one of the programs about it on MSNBC I ended up deleting my post. Too depressing. There's nothing I could say that others hadn't said better.

I ended up staying up late watching Zodiac on DVD. Robert Downey, Jr. Wow, what an actor. He might just be, with Kevin Spacey, my favorite actor of my generation. How did I miss that one at the theaters? Just might be one of my 2007 top 5.

There's nothing much on network TV for me anymore. I was looking over a list of new shows and could only groan. The Geico caveman? Please! I miss Frasier, Seinfeld, Cheers. I miss The Rockford Files.

I did see this really cool program called Iconoclasts from 2005 on Sundance about Redford and Newman. The two starred in my number one favorite movie of all time, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. They were hanging out at the Westport Country Playhouse, taking a drive, talking about movies, racing, salad dressing and old times. A really enjoyable hour of television.
Now I think I am going to put Superman Returns in the DVD player until I doze off.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Kid Grows Up Wanting to Be Fireman Against His Will

It's Labor Day, and I have always enjoyed watching the Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon.

But until this morning I had no idea that Jerry and Ed and those hundreds of celebrities like Dave Matthews and B.B. King and the millions of people across the country who watch the telethon and donate money to fund research to find a cure for muscular dystrophy have been wasting their time.

I read Ben Mattlin’s embittered piece on the Washington Post web site this morning, about how he was a poster child for MDA and never got to meet Jerry. Yes, Mattlin claims that the nasty rumor we’ve all heard over the years is true – Jerry never took a moment to say hello to this cute poster child. Not once. Not a single "Hiya, kid."

MDA also misled millions of Americans into believing Mattlin wanted to be a fireman, when in fact he wanted to be a scientist or detective.

To make matters worse, according to Mattlin, the MDA implied that children with MDA might not grow up. Apparently, children diagnosed with muscular dystrophy must live into advanced old age, succeeding in careers as scientists and detectives, while those of us blessed with health and non-scientific pursuits take our chances.

Mattlin’s article has led me to a new way of thinking about muscular diseases:
  • These MDA people do not need my money.
  • Jerry Lewis already has plenty of money.
  • Jerry does not say hello to the children.
  • Video of Jerry chatting with children on this years' telethon was generated by computers at Industrial Light & Magic, a division of LucasFilm Ltd.
  • “Jerry’s Kids” is an arcane and insulting label.
  • The MDA has been meddling in the career aspirations of youngsters.
  • Mattlin seems to suggest that MD is just some minor spine problem.
  • Reading this sob story of Mattlin's has made me realize that those with disabilities are to be pitied and felt sorry for by the rest of us.

All this time I thought perhaps if those with muscular dystrophy had some kind of celebrity spokesperson who brought public attention to the diseases of MD, that millions of dollars might be raised. I thought that being a highly publicized organization would foster a desire in both private and public sectors toward advances scientific research, and I had assumed that decades of focus and support for MDA might some day result in advanced treatment and a cure.

Mattlin has obviously been damaged by these shysters at MDA, yet Jerry and MDA and millions of people still hope and believe for the day that these diseases will be cured.

Perhaps the $63.8 million in donations this year was worthwhile, despite the indictments of naysayers like Mattlin. One can only hope that his career as a detective was not marred by the scandalous misrepresentation of this poster child by Jerry and the MDA.

By Reqest: More on Breakfast, the Most Important Meal of the Day

I had grits for breakfast this morning. We often do on weekends. There are not too many places that serve grits around Seattle. Some Denny's will serve them by request, but I'm not a big Denny's guy.

There were two restaurants that served grits that I enjoyed, but it's been years since both of them closed. One was called Larry's, I believe, and it was in Pioneer Square. It was a blues club, but they opened mornings and served grits, biscuits and sausage gravy. The other was a small place in our old neighborhood. The lady that owned it was from Charleston, South Carolina, and her place specialized in "low country" cooking. And the grits were terrific. She had them shipped in weekly from a mill in Tennessee at considerable expense. She told me once that she actually lost money on grits, but that they were integral to her menu and she would only serve the best.

Then one Saturday her place was closed and that was it. I don't remember the name of the restaurant, but I remember the food.

And the especially the grits.
Personal Message: George, next time we breakfast together, the grits are on me!

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Breakfast: The Most Impoartant Meal of the Day

Why is it that photographs of food in magazines, TV and on menus look so appetizing, but when you take a photograph of food, it always looks nasty? Chinese restaurants seem to be the exception to this "menu" rule - the photographs they post of their entrees seems to be done with a Polaroid camera and a low-end color printer. But I digress.

The picture at left is not meant to make you salivate. It is actually a nasty breakfast.

We worked nights this week, training the team on emergency back-up systems, and at 7am every day I treated the crew to breakfast.

Thursday morning Dan ordered eggs, bacon, sausage and hash browns, and used a quarter bottle of ketchup on the unsuspecting spuds. By the time he got all that ketchup out his omelet was cold. We were so stunned at this culinary faux pas that the others egged me on to take a picture of his plate for posterity. I did so.

Now I like ketchup as much as the next guy, but I think Dan merely ordered the hash browns as a medium for eating ketchup, since ketchup by itself as a side dish is frowned upon in polite society. And Dan himself managed to confirm my suspicions a short time later: when he had eaten the top layer of hash browns, he proceeded to add another quarter bottle of Heinz to the gooey remains on his plate.

Dan and I have worked closely together for nearly to ten years. We've shared many a meal in that time, and you think you know a guy. This brash act upon a plate of defenseless hash browns with four pounds of a popular condiment has left me feeling stunned and betrayed. Sure, I may submerge a maple sausage patty beneath six ounces of yellow mustard, but I've never made a secret about it. He has known about my mustard habit for years. But this --

The most important meal of the day, they say. If Dan is counting ketchup as a serving of fruits and vegetables, then he's good to go for another week.

Or two.