Wednesday, October 31, 2007


What: Engagement and Detachment, toward a normative exploration of the human will over twenty-nine year."

When: Saturday, December 8th - 7:30 p.m.

Who: Adults over the age of 21 (infants okay... Check toddlers at the door).

Where: The Sawyer Estate


7:30 - 8:30 Cocktail reception featuring the JAZZforce singers.

8:30 - 9:00 Opening remarks by the chancellor.

Breakout sessions 9:00-10:00

A) Fostering peace when the World Wants war (The Elk room - sixth floor)

B) Excitations and transliterations: The Poetic World of Dance (Interactive room)

C) Can we survive climate change? (Annex)

10:00 - 10:30 Improvisational comedy, featuring the Dudley Riggs travelling improv troupe.

10:30 - 11:30 Keynote speaker: Alan Greenspan (Main auditorium)

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Rock TV

So here is the latest from my church video ministry. The video chronicles the way in which the contemporary mime elects to interact with society at large.

The film features a scene in which so-called "reckless teenagers" play the game Trouble, which featured, of course, a pop-o-matic bubble for dice-rolling functionality. Clearly, this scene is a scathing rebuke of the Bush administration's imperialistic war policies. This represents our first foray into the overtly political...


Friday, October 26, 2007

travelogue 10/25

Nothing like five hours of sleep to get you going in the morning. Cripes.


So we are setup gor our little gig in the Illinois state government building. Like most government buildings, it features an atrium fortified by copious amounts of glass. The prominent colors are peach and turquoise. I'm not exactly sure when this building was conceived, but can you recall a time in which this color combination was popular? $200 million well spent, Mayor Magoo.


Damn, Chicago has got some craaaaazy homeless people. It is almost as though they shipped off the smart ones to us. There are some unironic Tracy Morgans walking around here...


Speaking of which, have you ever seen a Payday Loan type joint with a line going out the door? Reminded me of the scene in "Requiem for a Dream" where the junkies were lining up for heroin. I half expected someone to jump on top of the counter with a semi-automatic and start-shooting. Man...


We hit up the uber-touristy Italian Village for dinner. Utterly fantastic, by Minneapolis standards. Oh, and the waiter didn't condescend to us... Not one bit. He didn't dump drinks at our tables with an attitude, or take our main dish order immediately after we ordered appetizers. He recommended dishes, he brought our food on time, and he didn't seem like he would rather put staples in his testicles than serve us. He was even nice. Can you believe that? A waiter who does his job? How foreign! How absurd! How, um, unlike Minneapolis! Seriously, the next waitress who sneers when I ask for another glass of wine is going to get a fork in her ass.

Not really, but maybe let's stop throwing 20% at insufferable people who treat us like crap, eh? Starve the arrogant beast.


The weatherlady for Fox News Chicago's name is Amy Freeze. She also has large breasts. I don't buy this for a second.


When I travel, I purchase bears for my wife. My goal is to get her bears from all fifty states, which is the sort of nauseating miscellany men do when they really care about someone, and I have no idea whether or not she appreciates the gesture. At any rate, I realize now that I actually purchased a Beanie Baby Chicago bear today. This is problematic on certain, but not all, levels.


I am so coming back here. I miss this town.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Travelogue 10/24

I am flying. Again. As I speak, I am approximately 14% of the way through a 65 minute estimated flight time. I have already managed to offend the NWA stewardess, by way of giving her a “calm down” type gesture whilst arguing with nitwit on a cell phone that, in accordance with FAA regulations, was to be properly stowed and, really, NWA Stewardii are amongst the easiest classes of people to offend.

I don’t want to pay $2 for seven Pringles either, about which she probably has no opinion one way or the other.

Booze, on the other hand.


Specifically, I am flying to Chicago, which is my favorite city. The business trip is impromptu, as I am a young executive on the go. Chicago is spectacular for being the coolest city to have airports that are nowhere near it. Whose idea was it to put O’Hare an hour outside of a major metropolitan area? Now business simply take up residence in Chicago’s suburbs, in order to maintain proximity to the airport. It’s like urban sprawl at gunpoint.


Why aren’t small towns more grid-like? Wouldn’t that be the most efficient mechanism for growth? Instead, neighborhoods eminate like tentacles from a vaguely thoracic downtown area, which itself looks like a Rorsach blot.

This has been another episode of the amateur civil engineering hour.


Sign that I don’t communicate with my wife enough: Khris asked me yesterday if I had ever heard of the band Radiohead.

Sign that my wife and I have nothing in common: She described Radiohead as the band who performed “Creep”.


We are preparing for landing already. This is good news. Short flights are the cat’s pajamas. Good riddance, plane.


Monday, October 22, 2007

Monday Musings

I would like to thank Rondo, the mentally retarded squirrel with a heart of gold, for filling in on my behalf last week. Thanks Rondo. You may be useless, but you will always be inoffensive. I've learned nothing from you.

Let's roll.

I'm famous! My latest guest blog on the Detroit Bad Boys blog (it's basketball, not gay S&M) was linked from the ESPN NBA frontpage. Go and see. Seriously, people, this is all I have. I am pathetic. I need this. Go see.


Had a discussion with a friend about the relative merits of joining MENSA, the national society of gifted people. On one hand, it would seem that MENSA is a group that would be desirable to join. On the other hand, the very act of joining a society dedicated to the promotion (and de facto advertisment) of one's own intellect would seem to house a rather unbearable membership. She won't get in anyway, though, 'cause she's a girl and girls are dumb.


Bobby Jindal won the governors race in Lousiana, beating his closest challenger by a margin of 54% to 17%. Let's hear it for diversity! Wait, he's Republican? Oh, never mind. He's an Uncle Tom. What, he's Indian? The noble kind or the outsourcing kind? Oh, well those people don't count.

I can guarantee you that there are more people who think this way then there are racists in Lousiana. I guarantee it.


Chuck Norris today announced that he is endorsing Mike Huckabee for president of the United States. A quote:

"Mike is also a respected and fearless leader, and he does not cower to the cries of any majority or minority,”

I like that Chuck Norris has resorted to talking like that website that says absurd things about him. I am also happy that Norris is a conservative (but then, what else would he be?). But what the hell is he saying? Huckabee won't cower to the cries of the majority OR the minority? Does Huckabee propose to be a dictator?

At first I thought it was odd that Norris was so conservative. But then, what else would he be? He was the Texas Ranger. He endorses Huckabee! He endorses him right in the face!


I am glad the world was spared a Rockies-Indians World Series. That is all I'm going to say about that.


Somebody get stabbed in my friend Adam's alleyway last night. Ah the excitement of living in Rybak's Minneapolis. This is only murder number 38, though, so I anticipate Rybak will be taking credit for staring into the distance while the murder rate dropped as a function of mathematical probability.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Top Ten Fridays

It's time for another weekly rendition of top ten Fridays. Today I countdown my ten favorite sports!

10. Tennis - More fun to play than to watch. Gotta love any sport you can play on clay (rhyming intentional!)

9. Jai-Alai - They can get the ball going 188 mph. Don't let your guard down!

8. Golf - Did you know that Tiger Woods is half Asian? That's okay. He's all skill.

7. Badminton - The official name for the birdie is the shuttlecock. No that's not a dirty word. That's really what they call it.

6. Ping-pong - A basement classic.

5. Soccer - Or, should I say, football. That's what they call it in other countries. Weird.

4. Hockey - The greatest show on ice.

3. Baseball - Going, going GONE!

2. Football - Weirdest shaped ball of all time.

1. Basketball - Go Pistons.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

The other day, my friend posted a picture of a pretty interesting sea creature. Take a look!

Turns out its a real fish. Pretty weird, eh? I'll say this. God sure has a sense of humor! Thanks for brightening my day, Peter, even if you go a little too far sometimes :P

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Great picture!

Tell me this picture isn't this cutest.


Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Que Pasta with Cheese

I got this delicious recipe from Rachel Ray. It's got some zing to it, so it's not for the faint of heart. But I think you'll find that it takes you right back to the heart of Mexico. Maybe wear some sombreros while you dine! Me gusta!


4 poblano chiles
1 pound farfalle (bowtie) pasta or whole wheat penne rigate pasta
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, grated or finely chopped
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 cup chicken broth
2 cups milk
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin (1/2 palmful)
1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander (1/2 palmful)
2 1/2 cups shredded Mexican cheese blend or a mix of cheddar and queso fresco cheeses
2 small vine-ripened tomatoes, seeded and chopped
1 avocado, cut into small cubes
4 scallions, chopped
Juice of 1 lime

1. Preheat the broiler to high. Broil the poblanos on a pan until charred on all sides, 12 to 15 minutes. Place in a paper bag and let cool for 10 minutes. Peel, seed and chop.
2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt it, add the pasta and cook until al dente.
3. While the pasta is working, in a medium saucepan, heat the EVOO, 1 turn of the pan, over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook until softened, 6 to 7 minutes. Add the butter and stir to melt. Whisk in the flour and cook for 1 minute. Whisk in the chicken broth, then the milk, and bring to a simmer. Season with the cumin, coriander and salt and pepper to taste. Cook until thickened, about 5 minutes. Add the cheese and cook, stirring, until melted.
4. Toss the pasta with the sauce and reserved poblanos. Serve in shallow bowls; top with the tomatoes, avocado and scallions and drizzle with the lime juice.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Monday Musings

Monday, Monday. Can’t trust that day, but you can always trust my weekly rants. Let’s muse.

Went to a friend’s wedding yesterday. I am always struck by the awkward malaise that is the hugging line. The groom approaches untold numbers of distant uncles, trying to finesse the inherent indecision about whether to employ a hug or simply a hand shake, or even an arm hug.

The result it generally something most accurately described as a caress. And so it goes, down the line, with the groom caressing perhaps of dozens of uncle’s. Perhaps that is why the people of India call the wedding day, punjar-tikka-tulugu, or “the day of man’s seasoning”.


According to a recent CNN article, many Brits are pulling their own teeth, because they cannot find a dentist who will provide service in accordance with their nationalized system.

You know how everyone who supports Universal Health Care conveniently has a friend in Britain or Canada who just can’t get enough of socialized medicine? Every time you discuss the issue, their happy, utopia-suckling friend has just gotten two brand new kidneys and a free lollipop. Here’s guessing that the teeth-pullers miraculously have no American friends.


So we had a flood at our workplace. A water pipe broke, sending water cascading to our floor. How come everywhere I go, there is a flood? Is this judgment for the goats?


The Pistons season is looking up, with some nice young pieces to compliment an experience core of… Yeah, you people don’t care, do you? Ridiculous. Most of you probably just figured out who Adrian Peterson is. Admit it.


So are the Colorado Rockies “America’s Team” now? Am I going to be forced to swallow that? Yay, Rockies. Expansion baseball!!!! (Devours a sugar-free cake in the shape of Shoeless Joe Jackson).



Friday, October 12, 2007

Top Ten Fridays: Worst people in Minnesota

I hereby declare today to be Top Ten Friday. Let's get sassy my glancing over the ten worst people in Minnesota.

10. Nick Coleman. Shrill, unpleasant, and utterly without nuance, Coleman really doesn't have very many fans. But then, neither does his insipid paper.

9. Kevin McHale - Absurdly, Forbes magazine named him the best executive in all of sports. That is the sort of result that empirically proves that your methodology is flawed. Enjoy the Al Jefferson era, people. Of course, if any sports fans deserve a dumpy manager, it's Minnesota fans, who must be the least knowledgable about any sport in the world. Even our rabid hockey fans would be hard-pressed to name more than two players on the Wild. And no, passive aggression is not a sport.

8. Collectively, everyone who hangs out around Block E. Seriously, thanks for making this block of downtown one of the least safe places in middle America. You people suck, and no I am not going to give you a dollar, whether or not you call me a spook. That's "Spook with a Job" to you, stinky.

7. Jesse Ventura. What the hell was that all about, anyway? Remember how he was governor?

6. Brokeback mayor R.T. Rybak. The facial expression says it all with this guy. Did anyone see the video clip of him pelting his cell phone against the wall during an episode of Almanac in the days after the bridge collapse? Wow.

5. Thandiwe Peebles. Hired as Minneapolis superintendent principally because she is a black woman, Peebles gained a reputation for incompetence and corruption. Known for making her employees buy her food and walk her dog, Peebles worked for 17 months, earning a $180,000 buyout for her efforts. Anybody who is so incompetent and corrupt that they get themselves fired as superintendent of Minneapolis schools has to be trying pretty hard.

4. Dean Zimmerman. He's the Green Party jackass who accepted bribes while he served on city council. Technically, he is doing time at a minimum security facility in Littleton Colorado. Yeah, don't come back Dean. We'll keep your party, though. Very useful for vote splitting.

3. My former tenant. Very litigious. Not very employed. Lives in filth. Apparently Little Caesars takes food stamps. She destroyed my house and then sued me for it. She lost. She plans to appeal. She'll lose. Reason I vote Republican.

2. Lesbian Fire Chief Bonnie Bleskachek. Admittedly, I had to Google her actual name. Bleskachek was hired by Brokeback mayor R.T. Rybak (see no. 6) because she was a lesbian, so it's hard to say she did not deliver as promised, facing multiple lawsuits for physicallly abusing and sexually assaulting female subordinates. For her behavior, the city cut her pay. Awesome.

1. Rep. Keith Ellison. Jew-hating Muslim who tricked a bunch of Somalians into electing him. Thank you Somalia, for your contributions to Democracy.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Cat, you are disrespectful.

Smartycat's blog today features a diatribe against my friend Peter and his wife for purchasing a new cat. Cat, as usual, you have gone too far.

My friends have the right to purchase, or not purchase, however many animals they choose. This is in no way reflexive of their need to get out more, or to finally bite the bullet and start pumping out babies. Frankly, I am upset that you would judge a mutual friend in this manner.

Cat, I call on you to retract your inappropriate blog.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Monday Musings

To avoid fainting, keep repeating: "It’s only Monday Musings." "It’s only Monday Musings."

Look at me! Look at me! I was invited to guest post on the Detroit Bad Boys blog. I'm a damn commodity, that's what I am. Go Pistons.


Did anyone notice that Hugo Chavez tried to change the time in Venezuela? Like, literally, wanted to change time by half an hour, WITH ONE WEEK'S NOTICE! Oh, and he's trying to make himself leader for life. From now on, Chavez is a litmus test. If you do not recognize that he is a dangerous dictator in the making, you do not understand history, and you should not be allowed to vote.

But, what about Pat Robertson? No dice. You can't vote.

He cares about the poor! Good for him, I'm gonna slash your tires on voting day.

He stands against Bush's imperalist regime... Stop right there and hand over the registration card. Thanks, now I am going to fight you. I've been looking forward to this.


Quick poll, is anyone buying this Obama revival crap? Now he wants to do no less than bring the Kingdom here on Earth. Y'all can stop Googling... I'm sure some Republican has promised this in the past, but what a positively absurd claim. Whatever your eschatology view of the interplay between Earth and heaven, this is a ludicrous thing to say. But then, Obama is ludicrous, articulate though he may be. He can have his kingdom... I'll take good policy.


If I were ever going to change the Constitution to allow a foreign-born citizen to run for office, it would be to allow Ayaan Hirsi Ali. If you don't know her story, the short hand is that she lied her way into Holland to avoid an arranged marriage to a cousin. After 9/11, and observing the rampant abuse of women inherent to the Islamic religion, she renounced it to become an atheist. She then wrote a screenplay for a film about Islam's abuses, for which the director was murdered by Muslim Extremomoderates. She now has a bounty on her head and works for the American Enterprise Institute.

Her latest project? A book entitled "Shortcut to Enlightenment" in which the prophet Mohammed has a chance to visit the New York Public library. Brilliant. I don't know if she can pull God's kingdom out of her ass, but she does have ten times more balls than the Barack Obama has in his audaciously hopeful happy-pants.




That's all for now folks. I'll just be weaing this shirt until next week.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Toys for Tots

My usual daily stroll through the online toy stores yielded some exciting new items.

We've got Monster Bowling

Uh oh! Look at those scary guys.

Knock them down. Don't let them inspire fear. This is what they deserve. Die, monsters, die like my grandfather did before I was born! Ohhhh, what fun.

Then there's potty monkey!

Monkey!!! What are you doin' there? I'm trying to go poop. The age range for this is 18 mo.- 7 years. That sure is one developmentally challenged 7 year old! Potty Monkey helps children develop comfortable bathroom habits. If only Larry Craig had one! Cheap humor!

How about Rockabye?

Completely appropriate! Not at all disconcerting!

That was fun, guys. I wish you would play with my toys with me. Nobody wants to, and they say I'm weird for asking, and they drive away at high speeds. Everyone's just bein' silly, which is why I'm so alone!

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

New Hangout Spot in Minneapolis

Recently, the Old Chicago (overpriced pizza chain of nominal repute) downstairs from my work shut it’s doors. For those of us who work in the warehouse district of Minneapolis, this represented a beacon of hope. A two-story restaurant with access to light rail in a growing section of town? What a fabulous opportunity!

My co-workers and I savored the myriad possibilities. Maybe an Asian-style bistro with a lively happy hour would find a home in the cavernous space, or a namesake restaurant from a rising star East Coast chef. Heck, with the ample square—footage, why not have a sort of international deli or (dare I imagine it?) a small dinner theater!

I came to work this morning to find the windows plastered with a giant B & W sign that said “Magoos: SOON”, festooned with Coors Light logos.


Well, I guess the party-whores will have a new toilet to use on their way from Brothers to Champps during their weekly Pub Crawl of the Dull. Nothing like the smell of perfume, urine and hair extensions on a Monday morning. If these Magoo’s people have any class at all, they’ll build a ramp so the vomit can flow into the streets.

I mean, they are aware that there are approximately 14,000 bars along first Avenue that appeal solely to this clientele, right? What can they possibly contribute to the downtown milieu that has not been replicated throughout our own little Red Light district?

I mean, a Mediterranean restaurant in Southeast have to give their left testicle to get a wine and beer license, but we’ll just peddle the stuff like it’s candy, just as long as they play the latest Wreckx-n-Effect, or whatever the hell kids listen to these days.

Gee, I wonder if KDWB will DJ? We can only hope. Maybe James Blunt can make a surprise appearance and all the somewhat-clad women can feel loved while some dude in a striped pink shirt, know to his fellow known to his friends as “Wookie”, grinds his scent into her.

You’re beautiful… You’re beautiful… You’re beautiful, it’s… Well, now you’re covered in sticky Coors Light and Wookie’s backwash. Wookie wanted to show you his loft-style condo anyway. But hey, it’s Magoo's!


Monday, October 01, 2007

Monday Musings

I'm sick. The weather is awful. And the Lions 3-1 start is surely the harbinger of some sort of cataclysmic event (another Chernobyl?). Let's muse

Hey. Britney Spears is in the news again. Look at that. Woooo... Front page of CNN. Go See!


Meanwhile, Radiohead, a musical group with actual merit, is releasing its album for free. Free, I tell you. But does that even get a whiff of press? Noooo....


Keith Trautman has revised his webpage. Seems he is in the process of enhancing his application format. Yeah, I'll bet he is. He is still promising never to give you an interest-only loan. That's what we call fraud. Feel free to report it to the commerce department. I will be.


I'd worry about being sued*, but I don't think lawyers take credit cards.


Hot Baseball action! The Padres take on the Rockies for the last playoff spot. Two slightly-above average teams battling for 4th place. Does it get any better? No? Really? Not ever? Oh, your serious... Crap. (puts gun in mouth, pulls trigger).


Looks like the new bridge is going to cost $400 million instead of $250 million as previously anticipated. That was quick. Of course, if you don't support the bridge, then you don't care about the children. Which would you rather have, the children, or a new baseball stadium? This is literally the choice you have made. You have chosen baseball over children's lives. Right, Nick Coleman?


Civilian and troop deaths are down in Iraq. This should impact our policy in any way though. No war for oil! I am reasonable.


That's all you people can handle, I'm sure. Read it again, if you like.

* - mortgage fraud, negative amortization, one-month option arm, tri-minnesota, bait and switch, dishonest, liar, foreclosure.