Monthly Archives: May 2010

Memorial Day.


I guess I musta blinked and somehow another nine months has slipped by and once again it’s Memorial Day and the start of Touron Season.

Seems like just yesterday it was September and they were all leaving.

Almost overnight our sleepy little island has been afflicted herpes-like with herds of frantically vacationing sun-screen-slathered tourons noisily packing our beaches and parking lots and leaving them strewn with garbage, half-eaten food, and dirty diapers.

But enough about them for right now.

Memorial Day means many things to many people. If you’re in the military or have lost a loved one fighting far from home it is a special day of remembrance- as it probably should be for all of us. For too many of us though, Memorial Day just means a Monday off and burgers on the ‘barbie.

Shallow and sad, but true.

So, being fairly shallow and sad ourselves, after we endure another day today at our touron clogged beach, Miss Carol and me are gonna make us some Jucy Lucy’s.

It’s easy- simply roll out two very thin hamburger patties for each burger, quarter a slice of American (its Memorial Day, remember?) cheese and place the quarters in the center of one patty, covering it with the second patty, and crimping the edges to seal in the cheesy goodness.

Then grill ’em, pop ’em on a bun with pickles, mayo, and grilled onions, garnish with a cold beer and enjoy while you gaze out over the hordes of sunburnt and sandy tourons and dream of Labor Day.

(photo courtesy(?) of Flickr)

Talk. Talk.

Miss Carol likes talking the way the Pope likes praying and Tiger Woods likes sex.

And I’m used to it.


But, lately, it’s getting maybe a little bit over the top.

We took off a half day the other day and went up to the strip for lunch so we could use up a Christmas present before it expired. We don’t get out much and ’cause we’re lazy and don’t go NEAR the strip during Touron Season we had to take some time off and just GO.

The whole way in the truck Miss Carol alternated between talking and texting on her Crackberry. While at the restaurant Miss Carol kept checking incoming whatevers and, well, talking. Sometimes to me, sometimes to work, sometimes to the people around us.

Same thing on the ride home. Constant and mind bendingly headachy.

She calls me on her way home from work and wants to talk about her day even though she’s on her way home from work and we’ll talk all about her day when she gets home.

And now tonight, after we’ve both been working 13-14 hours and she’s making dinner and me, I’m waiting for dinner and sipping cocktails, Miss Carol’s once again on the phone and talking.

Jesus. Give it a break, maybe.

Ya gotta realize, I work by myself and can go days talking to no one but myself and listening to a book on CD.

It’s jarring sometimes.


Or maybe perspective?

I was tellin’ Miss Carol the other day that maybe I need to change the way I think.

We were walkin’ Cutter and Tug and talkin’ and I’d got to wonderin’

That maybe instead of dreading it as a twice daily mile long herky jerk wrestling match that maybe I should think of it as the boys being just so proud to be showing me off, wanting to parade me along the streets of the island, tugging and pulling me, strutting their stuff.

Miss Carol beamed at me.

So I pushed it up another notch and figured that maybe their wrapping themselves around me, tying me up in their leashes wasn’t so much that they’re completely stupid retards but that they’re just wanting to get closer to me.

And yearning to believe, I thought that maybe, just maybe, their yanking 8 foot yearning at the end of  7 foot leashes is simply wanting to smell the roses.

‘Cause really, shouldn’t we all do more of that?


As I’m dragged behind them, pulled to my knees, cursing and screaming, I’m gonna hold onto the sunny, overly optimistic perspective (or is it perception?) that maybe they’re better than I’m thinkin’ they are.

Mostly ’cause Miss Carol beamed at me.


Miss Carol and me attended our first ever Mormon wedding this weekend and no, that photo is in no way indicative of Mormons or Mormon weddings. It just  makes me laugh. I mean. Really.

So I’m thinkin’, what the hell, right?- just another wedding, another reception, more cake eating and garter throwing. But then I learned that Mormons don’t drink and since celebrating diversity is pretty much a one-way street, there wouldn’t be any alcohol at the reception ’cause Mormons don’t seem to want to celebrate MY diversity.


Now don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I have to have alcohol at every social event but it sure does help my enjoyment of the event and let’s face it, it is a social lubricant, greasing up the gears of conversation.

So we were wonderin’ what we were gonna do when Miss Carol came up with a brilliant plan. She mixed up a batch of vodka tonics and poured them into empty Dasani water bottles and put ’em in the freezer to chill.

Then us and our normal, non-Mormon friends, all stood around at the reception sipping chilled, crystal clear vodka laughing and having a good ole time while our dour, super-straitlaced, Mormon hosts pondered fun.

It was like being in high school again and having to sneak around. And ya know what? Drinking surreptitiously we probably drank more and probably got a little drunker than we ever would have just drinking openly.

Weird how that works.


So I was watching House Hunters International last night and this amazingly obnoxious couple was looking for a vacation home in Roatan, Honduras.

Moving from house to house and clutching their clipboards like shields they tallied ambiguities. They’d devised an absurdly numbered rating scheme to help them choose their vacation home and as I watched and listened to these nerdy number oriented turds apply numerical values to beach and ocean, slowly squeezing all the fun out, I slowly got pissed.

How dare they?

Ya know what?

If you feel you can somehow quantify and qualify your idea of island life then maybe you don’t belong, maybe this lifestyle ain’t for you. Maybe you should stay in your land-locked hellhole and spend your life making lists and ratings and numerical rankings for all the silly shit in your life.


I gotta stop watching TV.

Bitter Pill.

Before Cutter and Tug there was Boca and Largo.

They were my buds and my first dogs as the adult, grown-up me.

Boca was a free-to-a-good-home-lab-mix that we found in a want ad and Largo was a full blown goofy yellow lab that stumbled and tumbled across the  breeders yard and slammed into Miss Carol’s leg, panting and waiting for us to take him home.

I loved them with all my heart but somehow some kinda way something happened and before I knew it they got old right before my eyes. My buds grew up and blasted right past me, leaving me.

Towards the end, Miss Carol was traveling a lot and missed stuff.

I would yell and scream at Largo and Boca ’cause they were getting old and dying on me and Miss Carol told me I’d regret being the asshole me and she was right.

But I yelled and screamed at them anyway, frantic what I’d do without them and wanting and needing them not to get old and die on me, but they did.

And there are times, like tonight, that I still miss them and wish I’d been better.


And there are times, like tonight, that I’ll wake in the middle of the night with Tug leaning against me and gently snoring and Cutter curled up around my feet and I’ll think.


WTF? weekend.

So I had this killer weekend planned.

Miss Carol had to work at the hospital on Sunday and so I’d planned a quiet, comfy, little weekend were I could work and write and drink and hang out with Cutter and Tug. Even the weather was supposed to cooperate- the forecast was chilly and rainy.


But then.

We went with some friends over to a bar on Friday and as we were headed over on his boat he said, why don’t we tow your boat out tomorrow?

Did I mention Una Mas has been having problems?

So. As I got drunker, I agreed and that killed Saturday, what with the towing and the trailering and the logistics and what not. But I was hopeful and hoping for a quiet Sunday thinkin’ that gettin’ the boat to a mechanic and having the mechanic fix it would take days or maybe weeks.

Boats are like that.

Enter Jerry.

Turns out there’s this local guy that not only knows everything about engines and mechanical stuff but understands the underlying theory to the point where he not only fixes shit but makes his own parts. He’s amazing.

I dropped the boat off on Saturday and on Sunday it was fixed. Damn. Meaning I had to pack a cooler and run her down the bay and back to her anchorage.

Which was great, but.

I’d really been wanting my quiet little weekend and I know this sounds like whining but it’s not. It’s more a like a plaintive screeching.

Which is better.



“George Washington Carver began to hallucinate eight days before he died”

So begins Tinkers by Paul Harding and boy oh boy. How do I say this?

How do I say a book sucks?

How do I dare say that something someone worked on, putting their heart and soul into for months and maybe years and managed to find an agent and a publisher and got it finally out there and received accolades and a Pulitzer Prize and how dare I say it sucks?


It’s awful.

Or maybe I’m not deep enough or smart enough to plumb the depths of this tiny little white book about a guy dying and dreaming of his dead father. Or maybe, kinda like feeding caviar to a puppy, it was just wasted on me- but I just didn’t get it.

I kept waiting and reading and wanting the story to build, for it to do something other than simply chronicle George’s death. But it didn’t.

It sucked.

Next on the dog pile- Continental Drift by Russell Banks


I was just gettin’ ready to sit down, hoping tonight was the night I’d write that world class stellar post, that somethin’ somethin’ that even my mom and Miss Carol would be proud of and maybe even read.

But then I got to watching Deadliest Catch again.

And my incessantly constant laziness kicked in and I thought, ya know, maybe familial pride and readership is overrated and maybe I’ll just take the easy road, ’cause I’m all about easy, and write about the Alaskan King Crab fishermen again.

Quick sidebar-These guys are, without a doubt, the hardest people I’ve ever seen and, as a guy myself, as much as I might like to think I could throw myself up against that life and somehow prevail, or at least survive, I know in my heart of hearts that I couldn’t.

But. Still and nonetheless, I wanna think I could or should?

So, anyway, I started googling for Deadliest Catch pictures because taking photos of the TV doesn’t work so well anymore and as soon as I googled it?

I found out that Captain Phil Harris died.

And it stopped me and deflated me.

Captain Phil ran the Cornelius Marie and was a hugely colorful character, as they all are. He’d had his share of medical problems in the last year or so but, well, damn. And fuck.

So I sat back and thought, hey, it’s not like I’ve ever met him, or ever would, or for that matter might not even ever want to.

But still.

I found myself strangely saddened by his passing. For reasons I can’t even begin to describe, I was suddenly missing him, even as the show kept spooling out on the TV behind me and-a-still-alive-Captain-Phil hauled his strings and cursed his crew and smoked his endless cigarettes. And I wondered what his sons and crew who work the boat with him would do without him at the helm, even though I have NO connection with him whatsoever except via me watching a TV show.

And then it got worse. I realized that blogging and reading and caring about fellow bloggers is kinda the same kinda shit.

I’m all caught up in the lives of strangers that I’ve become close to, having never met them.

And it’s cool.

‘Cept it makes ya think, ya know?

Dog On It.

Dog On It by Spencer Quinn is, in a word, cute.

Miss Carol brought this book home from the hospital she works at saying that one of the staff had given it to her to read. Since I was between books I got to read it first.

After the first page I was ready to throw in the towel. Or maybe just throw up. I imagined the person at the hospital that had given Miss Carol Dog On It must’ve been one of those little old ladies that volunteer and answer the phones and stuff and probably think that EVERYbody likes the same little books that her little granddaughter likes.

It was that bad.

But I was too lazy to get up and go find something else to read so I opened up another beer and condescendingly kept plowing along, positive that I was wasting my time.

And ya know what?

I’m kinda glad I did. I mean, don’t get me wrong, Dog On It will never be mistaken for literature but it’s cute and honestly? Spencer Quinn does a really good job of getting inside of Chet the dog’s head and giving us a dog’s thoughts and viewpoint.

The story is the first(??) of the Chet and Bernie mysteries and is totally predictable but it’s fast and easy to read and you don’t have to think too much and did I mention it’s cute? Also, at the very end,

Whoops, hold it, hold on a sec-

What’s that sweethoneybabychile? No, nothin’, just messin’ around on my goofy little blog. Why?

You wanna do what?


I’m ON IT!

Gotta go, gotta run, Miss Carol wants to go get nekkid in the hot tub. seeya.

Next in the pile- Tinkers by Paul Harding