Monday, February 28, 2011


Tomato's don't come easy in this town, no sir, its easy to get a pickle, its easy to find a good Cappucino, but just try getting a little T for a BLT. Its a no go; you'd be more likely to find a goat that plays chess and smokes a pipe, or wool that don't itch, and just try being a diabetic its easier to get needles if you are a junkie than if you have a little problem with the sweets and come up short on insulin so you try snortin' Bug Powder like its Kool Aid or Folgers Instant but that never worked, all it ever did was lead you to feelin' buggy snortin' sugar and Coffee-Mate and all you ever really did want is to make love to a tomato; you'd trade some B and L for an adequate supply of T, but if you have learned anything over the years its always wait at least 30 minutes after meals before you try to fuck.

Sunday, February 27, 2011


I was the guy that sat next to you that never had pen and paper when he came to class, and was always a bit surprised to find he might need one on this particular day, and acted as though he had never had to borrow a pencil and paper from you before today, and feigned total confusion as to what may have happened to his pen and paper, incredulous that it may have been stolen just this morning, or having inadvertantly left it in the cafeteria, or used the last of it during Math last period.
And you were the girl that sometimes would torture me for a moment, and claim that you had no more pencils to lend, but I knew that in a plastic pouch in your well maintained binder there was like a whole aisle of school supplies and paraphernalia; a compass and protractor, a pair of safety scissors, French Curve, at least 4 rulers, a slide rule, erasers of every ilk, markers, high-lighters and of course ball point pens and freshly manicured pencils.
I could almost smell them over the aroma of the big ol' roach stashed in my front shirt pocket.

I don't know how I did it, walking into a class I had not been to in some days to find that we were taking the Chapter test, and you might hold out for a while, but eventually your charitable heart and my droopy blue eyed smile and pretty blonde hair would win you over and I would have a pen with which to take my test.
I don't know how I did it.
The real miracle in all this?
How the hell did I pass those tests?

Thursday, February 24, 2011


I was thinking about a kid I used to work with when I was a Chef. We called him 'Bruce Lee" because his name was Bruce and the one thing he could do was karate. He was like a yellow belt, which was pretty good for a guy with an IQ of about 75.
He was sweet and harmless and dumb as a post and eager to fuck anything up you asked him to, and I learned after a while what I could and could not count on him for.
I learned after a while how to use him. I was Garde-Manger, in charge of salads and cold foods at the time.

Bruce Lee, he loved Cherry Peppers. I couldn't keep him out of them. Then one day he had a whole gallon bottle of them. He stuck his hand into the jar and had a whole handful of them, but with the hand full like that, he couldn't get his hand out of the jar. It was baffling and frustrating him to no end, and by the time I noticed what was going on he was about to smash the jar against the Can Opener.
'Let go of the peppers Bruce Lee" I said.
He just looked at me and stammered "But,but..."
'Let go of the peppers Bruce Lee, and you will be able to get your hand out" I pleaded.
Bruce Lee looked at the jar, forlorn, and back up to me "But I want..."
"Let go of the peppers, Bruce Lee"
Bruce didn't have it in him to let go of the peppers. He liked those peppers, he wanted those peppers and now that he had a hold of them it was going to be hard to talk him into letting them go.
I had to learn and practice a lot of patience and persuasion that day, but I managed to talk Bruce Lee out of that jar. It took almost an hour of negotiations.

When I told my son this story he said:
"Daddy, you can catch a raccoon that way"
I suppose you can!

Thursday, February 17, 2011


Somewhere they said it was earlyspring and other places they thought it was latewinter and either way you knew it was going to be bad business. The crops would need rain and rain meant lightning and the winds that howl and wake people up at night and take them thundering to places they don't want to go and whether or not they ever make it back its anyone's guess and its a bad bad business. But the rain comes, we need the rain because its good for bad business and the winds blow turning trees to lumber and we have to grow up someday and the car payment comes due and the wind blows while you measure twice the tow truck screeches when business is bad and the next thing you know you wake up in Raintree County.
Raintree County.
Where the trees grow tall and the rain hammers down like bushel buckets of nails .

Friday, February 11, 2011


It had all started as a lazy summer day in a cherry tree, the three of us filling our cheeks and wondering what a city boy was going to do the next three months. Then we moved on to Mrs. Domdalskis Raspberry patch, conveniently located in the far corner of her backyard, just out of sight from her kitchen window. From there we could see the Duchess’ Mansion, abandoned and inhabited only by whatever spirit the old Austrian lady had left after her death last year. Perhaps that is where it began, as we eyed the dog entry chute that led to a room on the second floor of the mansion, the chute that her little Bichon Frissee dog named Edelweiss had used while the Duchess lived out her last days.
Or maybe it was at the McMillan Mansion, next to 3-Mile Park, where we eyed the huge grounds on the way to fly our kites at the park. The grounds stretched for a good mile, from the entry gate, down the tree lined drive, past the eight car garage and servants quarters, through shrubs and hedgerows and past the huge Manor to the backyard that lay on a downhill slope, full of prize roses and heritage tulips imported direct from the old country, until you reached the shores of Lake St. Clair.
Or maybe it was at Bill Spencers 4th Grade Birthday Party where we went to see “The Great Escape” which sparked our sense of adventure and stealth.
Likely it was all these things that sent us exploring that summer.

We ran the back-cuts, Dave and Greg and I, and we ran the backyards. We called ourselves "The Blue Raiders" because we thought it sounded cool. There was no way that we could have known that after I moved to Texas, “Blue Raider” would be the name of my High School Mascot. Dave showed us a way to hop a fence without ever breaking stride. We could be up and over, back-cut down the sideway, through the brush and break free past a kitchen window without being so much as a blur. We were as shadows turned to smoke then vanished in thin air. By summers end we had popped up just about everywhere we shouldn’t have been and done things I won’t tell you all about here.
I will tell you that after you went up the Duchesses dog-chute that emptied on the second floor, you would find a dumb-waiter that went from the kitchen to a great hall on the Second floor, and then continued up into the lady’s bedroom on the Third.
I will tell you that some people found that their clotheslines had been cut, their roses tramples, their hydrangeas deflowered by little pen-knives.
That little old ladies in flowered bonnets would grab a pail to put strawberries from the garden in and find that…there were no strawberries left.
And that old men would stare down heart broke at what had been a ripe and full Rhubarb plant, to find that it was entirely gone, replaced by empty packs of sugar strewn across the garden..
And on more than one occasion along the lakefront properties, a Groundskeeper would have to rescue lawn furniture thrown into the lake from the lakeside Gazebo.

Boys will be boys I suppose, and even now I wonder how often we did these things. But I can’t imagine doing them very long, or for any length of time where we wouldn’t have been caught, just like Steve McQueen in the Great Escape. It doesn’t matter how slick you are, you do anything long enough or enough times and you are going to get caught.

I remember the day we did get caught, although for a misdemeanor far less serious than the ones we had been committing.
We had staked out Mr. Bowles Tomato patch, just behind his garage next to Windmill Drive. It was a perfect spot, with a curve in the road where a car would pass, and a vine ripe Tomato could be heaved at the windshield, and we could duck past the back-cut slide sideways and down past the heather and over the fence, safely into my backyard.
We were down to all green tomatoes, and little ones at that, when our luck ran out. We were over the fence into my backyard before you could say ‘Jack-bananas” but the lady driver had gotten a glimpse of us going over the fence.
She rolled up into my driveway, un-beknownst to us boys crouched and giggling in my back yard, went and knocked at the door and when my mother answered, asked:
“Do you happen to know three little boys that are as thick as thieves?”

My dad wore me out that night.

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

"Roscoe tried to miss 'em but he didn't quite."

I'm comin back from lunch and I
Look down at my odometer
and it says 87777.7
and all I can think its
I gotta get up to
and play that Choctaw Bingo like ol'
James Mcmurtry.
This song is like an
entire lexicon of
how to talk Texas.
My favorite line?
"Roscoe tried to miss 'em but he didn't quite."


The last time us Kitchen staff got to go to a party it was a disaster. It was a big celebration up in the Presidential Suite on the 16th floor. The beer was iced up in a couple big Lexans. When the last beer disappeared it left a whole lotsa ice water.
Must have been a hundred gallons of ice water but it wasn't so much that if two Sous Chefs and two banquet cooks got on each side they could'nt be lifted up and dumped on the F&B Director, Banquet Manager, Catering Manager, and three sluts from Sales, like they do to Coaches who have won the Super Bowl.
Its too bad they all happened to be sitting on a $5000 dollar couch.
This caused quite a commotion on the 15th floor as well, when all that Ice water started through the ceiling in the Governors suite.
They made us leave the Party in the Presidential Suite and if we hadn't had a whole Kitchen downstairs to clean up, I imagine Security might have escorted us to the Emplyee entrance.
So while we were cleaning the Kitchen, the Chef came down and bought us 8 bottles of Dom Perignon from Room Service.
It was great!
And the next day the GM wasn't even mad at us for fucking up the two best Suites in the Hotel; he was mad at the Chef because the Chef had signed the Personel Directors name on the ticket for the bottles of Dom Perignon.

Man-o-Man, those boys from the Kitchen!

Wednesday, February 02, 2011


We have had this huge ice storm down here in Texas. It has caused the local Socialist Electric Company to institute "Rolling Blackouts". I suspect they are taking MY hard earned electricity and giving it to people who do not deserve it.
The Communist Bastards!
This is how it starts. First they take your electricity. Next, they will come for our guns. Eventually I will not even have a single Lesbian Cow left; it will have been gored and I will be living off the Gubment cheese with out so much as a Tinfoil Hat with which to defend myself
Its all part of the Health Care Reform.