Hiatus. How ya doing?

Back and posting.

Busy July. I should have hung up the ‘gone fishing’ sign but, alas, I planned no, and did no fishing this summer. I did eat some fish, however. What else did I not do on my summer vacation of which I didn’t really have because my school goes year around? I didn’t clean my garage, for one. Threw some stuff out, but organization time escaped me.

While I didn’t get my garage cleaned out, I did clean out my wallet and phone and it was quite the purge – especially the phone, whose memory I had completely tapped out with photos, videos and saved text messages. Some of those were interesting back-and-forths with my wife that were fun to reminisce on. There were at least a dozen ‘Hey’ ‘Hey’ ‘Goin?’ ‘Fine’ ‘What’s for dinner?’ exchanges of at least twelve comments each. Romance probably isn’t dead, but sometimes the files are corrupted.

‘Cleaning out’ a phone in this day and age is the twenty-first century equivalent of delving into the attic to see what might garner a few bucks at a yard sale or set up a messy tax return after the sale of an Antiques Roadshow find.

Except it’s all in pixels and the really interesting stuff you already forwarded or printed out. Plus, my current phone is only a year old, so the whole ‘antique’ concept is lacking – though the pictures from last summer of my grandsonFelix 05 07 15 - CopyFelix at Honkers game 2014 - Copy seem like an eon removed from now.

His current, ‘almost-four’ (far R)  looks a whole lot closer to fifteen than last summer’s ‘almost-three’ (near L) was to two. Wow. Pretty cool, actually.

Not to say that there weren’t a few other treasures unearthed in my July data-dumping. To wit…

IMG_20150605_144103 IMG_20150605_144114The fire alarm system outside of my classroom. Seriously. I’m all about self-sufficiency and try to impart that to my students, but I am not at all down with a DIY fire alarm. Besides, set one of those air horns off here in New Orleans, and people will just think it’s a drunk Saints fan or reveller just coming-to from last Mardi Gras. This falls somewhere between ‘epic fail’ and a Dr. Phil “What were you thinkin’?!”

IMG_20150212_210159I saw this late one night at the drug store, and was then able to document this historical note: most people are unaware that the Swiss Miss eventually left the world of hot cocoa, grew up and went off to med school. For a time, she had a thriving pediatric practice in Bern, but lost most of it after a stint in rehab due to an addiction issue after she was caught popping excessive amounts of little, white, freeze-dried marshmallows.

Eventually, trying to build a new life, she moved to Nebraska and worked with a colleague in developing this new product. Note the generic packaging; the financial backers of the venture wanted to put her picture on the box, but there was an ugly ‘trademark infringement’ issue that was rasied.

Who knew? Yeah, me either.

An actual conversation that occurred during the rather swift  demise of this suburban New Orleans restaurant after less than a year in business:

Customer, pointing“Umm, excuse me waiter. There is a typo on  your menu here: it should say ‘Cajun-blackened-chicken pizza,’ not ‘Cajun black-lung-chicken pizza.”

Waiter, sighing deeply, for the umpteenth time and with deep resignation, “No, sir. That is NOT a misprint.”



On the more practical end of things, I really like the new style coffee cans with the little foil seal across the top, and no lid to cut off, leaving tendon-severing edges behind. These little lips on the cans are great for bloodless storage in IMG_20150807_065956most any setting, once the coffee is gone.

Except the coffee is never gone. There is always that little, grainy glob of coffee that you cannot get out of the can. It just slides around underneath the can lip – back and forth, back and forth. Maddening, and the only foolproof way to jettison that little amoeba-like colony of coffee grounds would appear to be with the suction doohickey the dentist uses for saliva. To all the dentists I have ever known: could be a nice little side ka-ching for you.

Hey, Kopi Luwak (monkey digested, pooped out) coffee beans sell for about $165 a pound, retail.

Just sayin’.

Meanwhile, most of my personal books in my classroom are labeled with my name – a common teacher practice. As I was IMG_20150508_080507shuffling some things around one day, I glanced down and saw the book I was holding and wondered just how many of my students, former students, colleagues, friends, relatives, offspring, mother – would actually lay down a few greenbacks for any understanding provided by this particular, personal  installment of the popular ‘Dummies’ books..

My wife failed to see the humor, noting that it would defeat the purpose of the series to have one that would require multiple volumes.

Point taken.

Then one day I saw this really big display in the grocery store and all I could think of was every mother and grandmother I have ever known IMG_20150407_172636saying, over-and-over, “Stop playing with your food!”

My real fear here is if the fine folks who make Pringles find success with this ad campaign, we will be deluged with copycat store displays, leading to possible picketing of grocery stores and boycotts of produce departments.

Look, I could have been cheesy here and gone for the meat department joke, but I didn’t. So there.

Before we reach the end, there was this sign that I noticed while walking by a Porta-Potty at a local music festival. At first glance, I thought the sign said ‘MUSE’ and being the writer-guy I am, I thought, ‘well, that is interesting’ and then upon closer inspection I saw that the supposed ‘M’ was really a small, smooshed-together ‘IN.’ Then the poet-guy inside of me thought, ‘well, this is even more interesting’. And so, without further ado-doo:

IMG_20150216_153400The Green Lavatory

so much for Depends

a Porta-Potty

used with pain
no water

hot, fiberglass box
you’re chicken.


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