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Saturday, January 31, 2009

Chicken Scratch

Salutations, my flesh-covered companions!

Cornelius here today, with a BIG announcement!

CLUCK!!!!!

Oh, I am so excited I can barely contain myself, humans!

After realizing that “boy bands” are on a comeback, I have decided to launch my OWN career, with my two friends here (one is certainly far more dashing than the other, wouldn’t you say?).

What with the Backstreet Boys still back-streetin’, and the long-deceased New Kids On The Block back setting female hearts a’flutterin’ – well, I just naturally thought there was room for one more act – an act like the ladies have NEVER seen before!!

CLUCK!!!!!

Now, we have the looks, we just need the songs, and the name – both vital components to success.

Maybe YOU can help.

We hope to take classic songs from the past and present, and re-tool them a bit – make them our own. Here’s a few we’ve come up with so far:

Reach Out and Touch Somebody’s Wing

All The Single Chickens, All The Single Chickens…”

Oooh, You’re My Breast Friend

She’s Got Drumsticks, and She Sure Knows How To Use Them

CLUCK!!!!

Oh, there’s so many…

The problem is the name for the supergroup – we are in much disagreement, even though I am the lead vocalist, and will clearly be initiating the Justine Timberlake sort-of hysteria part of the shows.

My thought was “Corny & The Battered Finger-Lickers”, but the rest of the boys absolutely refused that one, outright.

CLUCK!!!!!

So then I suggested “Cornelius Pinfeathers III, and his Pluckin’ Poultry Pals”, but they griped about that one too!

Finally, I extended the suggestion of “Corny Chicken & The Fowl Wind”, but even I had to agree, that one was rather a double-entendre waiting to happen…

So, we need your help, humans. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

As long as it starts with “Cornelius &…”

CLUCK!!!!

Cluck for now!!

Friday, January 30, 2009



* If I had a dog, I’m not sure Bingo would be his name-o.

* If I stepped on a crack, I’d be likely to break my OWN back…

* Mary had a little lamb, until one day, unbeknownst to Mary, the delicious chops served for dinner were particularly tasty – not baaaad at all. Then all Mary had was a little wool sweater.

The fox and the fiddle. The horse jumped over the moon. The little cat laughed to see such sport, and the fork ran away with the spoon.” This is a quote from the very first soap opera pitched to network TV execs. The fork and the spoon would later split, after a wild weekend with the knife, and the laughing cat was busted for being a peeping tom (cat).

I have only ever once patted a cake, Baker’s man!

Rock a bye baby on the tree top, when the wind blows the cradle will rock,When the bough breaks the cradle will fall, and down will come baby, cradle and all.” Surely there had to be safer ways to test the laws of gravity, Mr. Newton…

Snow, snow – go away, come again some other day. Better yet, drift off to Manitoba, and take the cold weather with ya.” (Canadian proverb)

There was an old woman, who lived in a shoe, then there was MY old woman, who lived for shoes…” (That Dan Guy proverb)

Chow for now!!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Having spent the last couple of days getting up a bit earlier than normal, I have determined that morning television broadcasting is the last untamed frontier available for mankind. Never mind deep space, or the plummeting depths of the ocean – morning TV before the news teams kick in is about as thin and vacuous as a passing mist, or a silent fart.

Mrs. That Dan Guy is usually able to find a couple of her shows on at ungodly hours. But seriously, how many mornings can you hear self-promotional, TV-friendly designers and carpenters babble on endlessly about window treatments, and “bruised avocado tones” for painting a freakin’ rumpus room wall?? Egads man!! Put up a picture of dogs playing poker, and call it a day already – do you really need to fill a half hour broadcast with teams of people converting some heathen over to The Divine Temple Of TV Show Decorating?

(Hmmm – have I had my grumpy meds yet??)

This morning, some airhead was having her living room redone, and 10 minutes…TEN MINUTES were spent on curtains for the room. What ever happened to putting up a Lynyrd Skynyrd tour flag, or a Toy Story bed sheet? Bah humbug!!

(Pretty sure I haven’t had enough coffee yet this morning…)

However, when I tried to surf away, the other options on the guide were as bad or worse!

What ever happened to shows with entertainment, quality shows with timeless, lasting appeal for the generations? Why can’t I find Bugs Bunny, or even one measly little Roadrunner?

Where did it all go so wrong……..

Chow for now

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

January 28th…

Ha! Good thing I hadn’t made any lavish and unrealistic New Year’s resolutions, or I’d be feeling pretty bad right about now. Yep, that’s the ticket – don’t put any sort of artificial pressure on yourself at the start of a new year, and you can feel pretty relaxed as it sails right on by. I feel downright liberated right about now.

By June 28th, I will probably feel so relaxed I will want to lie in a wading pool with a bowl full of bananas on the lawn beside me, and count clouds as they idly drift by in the afternoon sky.

I will have to tell Mrs. That Dan Guy something though – she thinks I spend my days chained to this computer. HA HA!! How will I explain the banana bill??

I’ve got it! I’ll print something off from the Google! Dave Barry must have stuff online there somewhere! She’ll never notice the difference…

Seriously though, how fast can a year race by? January departed like it was in a foot race! And February, well that short little slacker month won’t last even half as long – I am seriously going to have to get my act together if I hope to achieve my goals this year.

Of course, I could just wait until Mr. Mac arrives, and then sit back and let the magic begin…

Stay tuned! Anything can happen here!

Chow for now!!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

I witnessed sorcery in action yesterday! Harry Potter lives!!

Here’s my true confession for the day – some time back I buckled under to peer pressure, and started up a Facebook page, for Mrs. That Dan Guy and myself. “And I”, if you want to be snippy about it.

Well, Mrs. That Dan Guy isn’t much one for the glare of the spotlight, even though she apparently occasionally quite enjoys making the odd Rosanna Rosannadanna post on my blog, loopy loony that she is.

So, the site typically languishes online for weeks, until something tweaks me between my ears, and I surf on over, to see how many ignored emails are in my in-box.

Yesterday, I was just starting to look at the stack of requests I hadn’t seen before then, when suddenly a little balloon pooped up, and said “Hi”!!

What sort of witchcraft does this Facebook possess?? How could an old colleague from Kelowna be speaking to me, even from a cartoon strip balloon?? It was almost enough to make me reconsider my afternoon Bailey’s and coffee treats…

Anyhow, I understand this is called “chat”, as I was able to respond, and carry on a short conversation via the miracle of these pop-op balloons. Not quite Blondie and Dagwood, but pretty amusing nonetheless…

So, I think I will go back today, and see if OTHER old friends and acquaintances are lurking in pop-up balloons, on Facebook. Or maybe I’m just sending out false hope, and won’t get back to Facebook until March.

Pack a lunch, if you’re planning on climbing into a balloon, to surprise me. I don’t want anyone out there to die of starvation in cyber-space…

Chow for now!!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Interesting to note that Morning has just been dented a bit so far here in our parts today – it has not fully broken as yet.

Do you ever find yourself wondering who has to clean up afterwards, day after day when Morning breaks? There has to be some sort of mess, I would suspect.

Of course, Morning could make a clean break, there’s no reason a break is always going to be a messy proposition. One just naturally assumes that “break” involves perhaps shattering, or splintering, but it could just be as simple as a split, or seam unravelling.

Like when a heart breaks – does it really “break”, or does it just feel like it has been broken? If someone gets a “lucky break” surely that doesn’t refer to a bone in their thorax, does it??

Man, there are so many ambivalent and outright confusing words and terms in our language. It just breaks my heart (but not literally) to think that people unfamiliar with the English language are going to have to break their backs (hopefully not literally) to try and determine the right way to use those confusing options properly.

Maybe they can learn over their lunch or coffee break. Which really confirms that this word “break” just isn’t as savage as it sounds. How can you break lunch, or coffee? Although, Mrs. That Dan Guy did mange to mortally wound homemade ginger snaps once…

One things for sure – I am NOT a scholar, so this is clearly over my head. Besides, the scholars would just suggest that “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”.

I say, “if it ain’t broken all over my floor, I won’t have to clean it up”.

I have the distinct feeling I should just make a clean break from this god-forsaken post this morning…

Chow for now!!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Well, the cold and flu season is still actively among us, humans and poultry alike, here in the Such Is Life household. We’ve gone through at least twelve boxes of Kleenex, with no end in sight. We’ve been popping COLD-FX pills like they were Smarties, just not as delicious.

We are also all wimps here, grumbling and whining (some people more than others) as we drag our sicko carcasses around the homestead. These colds are doozies – accompanied by red, sore eyes, plugged ears, runny noses, and a hump about the size of a grapefruit on Mrs. That Dan Guy’s back. We are a frightening sight…

So, I expect we’ll be lingering around the house today, to try and get our immune systems back up and running for tomorrow, the return of another work week.

In the meantime, I better get another look at that hump on MTDG’s back – I think it may be starting to form a pair of eyeballs!!

Chow for now!!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Chicken Scratch


Uhhhhhhhh…………

Thanks a lot, humans! Why doncha both get runny nose, hackin’ cough colds, and then pass them on to the poultry members of the household?? Huh? Why doncha???

Uhhhhhhhh…….


Oh, my achin’ beak… If there’s one thing that takes the ruffles outta my feathers, it’s gettin’ a brutal cold. I know there’s a popular old sayin’ about things being slicker than the you-know-what on a rooster’s beak, but lemme tell ya – I could live without that quirk right now!!

BUK…..

HACK!!!! HACK!!!!!

Uhhhhhhhhh………….

Holy cluck, even my knuckles are throbbin’….

I been tryin’ to hold this fever and chill-fest off with COLD FX, but so far, it ain’t workin’. I musta been extra vulnerable with TWO sickos barkin’ germs inta the wind!

BUK……HACK!!!! HACK!!!! Aaaaa-CHOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Crap….

I hafta give one a the humans here points for havin’ a sensa humour, twisted though it may be. He said he always gets over his colds by havin’ hot soup.

CHICKEN NOODLE SOUP!!!!

If that hairy waddler thinks I’m gonna chop off someone’s noodle, even my own, I ain’t nearly that desperate.

Yet….

BUK…. CHOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Jiminy Clampett – I think I just covered the entire coffee table in nasal spray – where’s the cluckin’ Kleenex in this joint???

I gotta go, my head’s about the size of a Buick, and my neck ain’t wut it useta be…

Cluck for now!

Friday, January 23, 2009

There is sufferin’ a'plenty this morning, in the Such Is Life household…

It started yesterday, with Mrs. That Dan Guy, who was exhibiting the symptoms of catching a cold, likely from our abrupt weather shifts between Vegas and c-c-c-cold old Canada. It could also have been the lady at the Duty Free shop hacking away directly onto our purchase, but we prefer to embrace a more attractive mental image. Much as you might, I suspect.

At any rate, later in the day, I as well was stricken with the symptoms of catching a cold. Which we both acknowledged as having, when I picked MTDG up later in the day.

So, we are both home, two little sickies – paying the price for getting away to a hot spot.

Such is life, indeed…

(Cough Cough Cough…)

Chow for now!!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

I know I often joke about it, and often I will pretend that it is actually happening, before rambling on like any other normal day. But today, this time for sure – it is true - I got nothin’.

Absolutely doodly-squat.

We returned from the States late the night before, and had to play ketchup (whoops – sorry…catch-up) yesterday, plus I had a column deadline, so I don’t even have any amusing left-over stories from our trip across the border.

We did watch a couple of TV shows which I had taped while we were away (Brothers & Sisters for Mrs. That Dan Guy, Corner Gas for both of us), so not much to report even on that front.

Hey, wait a minute!

We also watched “In Bruges”, the movie that recently won actor Colin Farrell a Golden Globe – and well-earned I must add, after seeing the movie.

The storyline of the film is that of a couple of hit men sent to Bruges (Belgium I think, I’m really not much of a details person), to perform a hit, which goes badly. The balance of the story arcs over the consequences and includes exceptional performances from Farrell’s co-star, and a mid-film appearance by Ralph Fiennes, who almost steals the show. What a great movie, and despite the constant grumblings of the characters over the city they have been dispatched to, the film is a loving and compelling travelogue of a spectacularly beautiful European city (Belgium is in Europe, right??).

Nice to see such a commanding performance by Colin Farrell, who in many respects I have often been compared to over the years (I have frequently suggested that I am the Irish Brad Pitt, which is actually a bit odd the more I think of it, not even being Irish. Ah well, it’s never stuck anyhow).

Anyway, the film is called “In Bruges”, and it is well worth seeking out.

Sorry that I had nothing today – I’ll try and jot down a few notes for tomorrow morning.

Chow for now!!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Ugh….

Late, late night return from Vegas – or should I say early morning?? Things are sluggish in the Such Is Life household, thus far today.

Shortly, Mrs. That Dan Guy will be ready for work, and I will have to stop nursing caffeine long enough to get her there. It will be a short workday for both of us.

I still have to work on a bunch of thank you’s, but not today. Catch-up today, and I do need to get a column together and sent out. Haven’t been online the last few weeks – I was hoping I might be today, to avoid a lengthy posting here, but alas, I am not. C’est la vie.

In place of one of my proper columns, please accept this delightful old joke, which is the only thing in my head right now:

Q – “Did you put the cat out?”

A – “I didn’t know he was on fire!!”

That one kills me….

Chow for now!!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


The Tuesday Morning “Nobody-Asked-Me-To, But-Here-I-Go-Anyway” Event Review – The Beatles “LOVE”, Cirque Du Soleil.

(or, Why I Will Never Be A Professional Concert Reviewer…) (Happy Birthday yourself, MTDG!!!)

The Vegas show that I picked to see for my birthday (and essentially signal the wrapping up of this incredible trip) was the long-running Cirque Du Soleil production of “LOVE”. I’ve wanted to see it since it debuted many moons ago, but our visits to this city have been performer-specific the last few years, so the show just hasn’t shoehorned into our agendas.

But it did last night, and man – you forget just how astounding these Cirque productions are, live and up close. Embracing the surreal imagery inspired and associated with the Beatles’ latter-year catalogue, this show is an overwhelming explosion of dance, acrobatics, and music – music that you recognize by the very first note, even after the wild re-inventions throughout the song library for this show.

You’ve got a tap number in rubber boots. You’ve got stunning roller-blading on skate-boarding ramps (that doesn’t even begin to convey what the performers do in that segment), and one special effect where most of the audience is covered under a billowing mass of cloth. Like any Cirque show, there is far too much going on both off and on stage to wrap your mind around – even more so here, with the surreal characters and sets arriving and departing in a frenzied blur of Cirque-iness.

You really can’t help but realize that this music lends itself to such a production, even though it was conceived and originally performed back in the final few years of the 60’s, and the early 70’s. To hear the unplugged version of Harrison’s “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”, as the performers (and a couple of wispy puppets) bring the song to life – it looks and sounds right at home in 2009. Freakin’ remarkable…

This show was something else, and the title entirely appropriate, considering what I’ve felt and feel this past few days.

Get your cabooses down here, and see this show!!

Chow for now!!

PS – in a further chance of surrealism, we are actually IN the U.S.A., while the new president is being inaugurated. THAT is pretty cool…

Monday, January 19, 2009

It’s official – my big day is over. Almost. Mrs. That Dan Guy continues to surprise me, even after the official celebrations have ended yesterday. We’re seeing a show tonight, and I had a delightful surprise certificate to open, after I returned from running down to pick up our morning coffee. Seems Mac is closer than ever, with a certificate to pick one up in February (or so). This has been one heck of a way to turn fifty!! MTDG - YOU ROCK!!!!

On the interesting and odd side of this big celebration, my weird number thing continued to turn up everywhere yesterday – especially with respect to my birthday. I was seeing 59 and 18 everywhere all day long – played a slot machine with a progressive jackpot of $59, 000 – saw 59 and 18 come up continuously on the Keno screens you see everywhere, and more.

Even the family members here are staying in room 222 in their hotel. By far though, the most bizarre occurrence was when I was standing in line behind a gentleman wearing a hat, which simply read “1959” on the back. Spooky, I swear…. What does it all mean??

Anyway, I’m going to have an awful lot of thank you notes to write after we get back. For now, we are after all in Las Vegas, so I must keep this short and sweet – BET ON RED!!!!!!

Chow for now!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Well, this has been an interesting 24 hours in the Such Is Life household – or maybe I should say OUT of the SIL household…

After an express mutual agreement between Mrs. That Dan Guy and myself NOT to do anything for our birthdays this year, Ole Harda Hearin’ surprised me with a getaway to one of our favourite places in the world – our second home to some degree – Las Vegas. In addition to my other edicts and express commands that we would keep a low profile for my milestone birthday, there were more surprises, and more yet to come, I understand. Nice to know that my word is still law around the ole SIL homestead…

I even had a call from an old friend, out of the blue, before we would have to leave the house. We had just a few hours before I had to tame my morning hair after our morning coffee, before packing, and rocketing away to the airport. My head is still spinning. While it was still in full revolution moments after check-in, we had a knock on our door, and yet another curveball was launched into my fragile well-being – my in-laws, joining us for what is clearly the largest breach of an agreement in the history of oral contracts. I am a mere helpless speck of flotsam in this mad scheme of Mrs. That Dan Guy (who by the way is my official nominee for “Most Amazing Spouse Of The New Millennium”, even if she can’t stick to a simple frickin’ agreement).

This morning, after going down to get us coffee and a sweet treat to jumpstart our day, I returned to a bed covered in cards and greetings that were beyond overwhelming. Friends, family…a note from our newspaper carrier griping about the lousy tip I gave him before Christmas…well wishes and kind thoughts from across the country. I am overwhelmed.

However, this is Vegas, so I must find the fortitude to overcome my verklemptness, and move forward – the casinos are callin’!!!

More on all this later, after I’ve had a chance to absorb it all..

Chow for now! YAHOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I’m FIFTY!!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

video

Chicken Scratch

We pre-empt all the other varied poultry usually seen in this space today, to present a clip of a gift from one of my sisters – in the video pasted above.

This is a house filled with birds of one sort or another, so it is indeed fitting that I hit a landmark birthday, with yet another new feathered friend.

Speaking of fowl, what sort of tree does a chicken grow on?

A POLE TREE!! Get it?? A Poultry…

Heh Heh Heh…that kills me…

Yes sir, this weekend I bid farewell to my forties, yet cling to my childhood with respect to my behaviour and general mindset. Not a hard thing for men to do, actually. Acting our age has never been a strong suit.

So, do I feel any older? Not really – although when I look in the mirror, the balding husky dude looking back at me from there sure does. THAT guy needs to get some medical attention, pronto!! It wouldn’t hurt for him to visit a dietician, either…

I don’t really have any insightful reflections on this milestone, except to say that I’m quite happy I’ve never had to pass a kidney stone yet. Nor a gall stone, or even a rolling stone for that matter. I haven’t been stoned in quite a while, to be truthful. I’d like to keep it that way.

As for what the future holds, let’s just say that I feel particularly lucky. I had a great year last year, and things are already looking to top that this year.

Oh yeah, and that youngster Mrs. That Dan Guy doesn’t get off the hook here – she celebrates a birthday of her own next week, albeit she still has a view of “50” as a blurry vision far down the road (cradle-robber that I was, back when she hopped out of the cradle to pursue me) – but she stills get older herself, so HA!

50. That’s almost half a century, well over twice a quarter of a century – that’s old, but only if you allow it to be.

Cluck…I mean Chow, for now!!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Man, just a few more days before President-Elect Omaha’s inauguration. Even up here in Canada, I will confess to being a little bit excited to watch all the pomp and circumstance that typically follows a new president’s swearing in ceremony. I’ll bet people in Nebraska are just as excited, seeing as how he shares a name with one of their major cities.

Go, Omaha!!!

Well, the economy is certainly taking on a toll on the concert calendar here in the Such Is Life household. We’ve only got two shows lined up to see so far this year, both quite a ways away yet. By now, we’ve typically already been to two or three, so the year is certainly starting off slowly.

However, in addition to less concerts being announced, there are also more acts returning to town that we have already seen, so that reduces our interest as well.

Here’s a list of shows just coming to The Saddledome, which we are passing on for one reason or another:

1) Brad Paisley – for Pete’s sake, we just saw him last year, and the show was terrific. Can’t justify rushing back so soon for another helping of paisley, unless we were Mrs. & Mrs. Prince.
2) Lil’ Wayne – of all the wide and diverse musical genres that we enjoy, rap and hippity-hop is so far down the list we’d need a ladder to find it down in the abyss. Plus, we are waiting for Big Wayne…
3) Nickelback – we still haven’t seen Canada’s most successful rock act, tour monsters worldwide. For all the international success they enjoy, and for that matter the enjoyment we get from listening to their music, for some odd reason we have ignored their tours. Perhaps we need to re-examine our patriotism…
4) Stars On Ice – Ha! It is to laugh…
5) Il Divo – Already attended one of their shows, and it was a concert highlight. You can’t recreate the magic again. Unless maybe you’re David Copperfield, who incidentally we have seen live.
6) Taylor Swift – Country music’s fastest-rising cross-over juggernaut is certainly a delight to see live, which we did last year. So, again, we are swiftly passing on this concert. Sorry.
7) Kenny Chesney – despite being country music fans, the leading concert draw of the past three or four years fails to interest us. Maybe it’s because he looks like a de-shelled turtle without his cowboy hat. Maybe it’s because we are showing solidarity to his ex, Renee Zellwegger. For whatever reason, this is another pass for us.

There you have it. We will just to be patient, I suppose. If we wait, they will come.

[Although, there was one major concert announcement in the paper yesterday, which I am dragging my heels on bringing to Mrs. That Dan Guy’s attention. She (crazy as a March hare) thinks we see too many shows as it is.

However, this is one of the few super-groups of the 70’s and 80’s, touring apparently with much of their original line-up, which is the only reason that we HAVE to see them. I will figure out some way to frame this, so that she will be eager to snap up tickets when they come on sale, later this month (landmark birthday, patience with respect to attaining Mac, handsome devil, benevolent personality, makes the most incredible Kraft Dinner you’ve ever tasted…)]


Till then,

Chow for now!!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

ARTICLES, 2009:

A) Whereas, it is understood that this space is going to be filled every day, with some sort of hastily-scribbled jibberish,
B) Notwithstanding any conventionally adhered principles of writing, nor necessarily unconventionally,
C) Four score and six days, for whatever that’s worth,
D) The readers of posted scribblings in this space accept no responsibility whatsoever, with regard to inappropriate usage of the word “coddle”,
E) No position will be assumed taken, if the scribbler chooses personal pan over hand tossed pizza,
F) Generally regarded as truth, scallops and clams also sleep with the fishes,
G) Pertaining to argyle, there will be none of that herein,
H) Mac, oh Mac. How much more brightly would this life shine with you here…
I) For the express purpose of mandating some small bit of order here, readers may not wear yellow whilst perusing posts,
J) Such Is Life cannot possibly track usage of readers wearing yellow,
K) Scribbler will (at least once per calendar year) occasionally try and come up with post topics in advance of postings,
L) This site does not endorse nor condone the crushing of soda crackers into soup,
M) Rousing language herein will assume stirring, not shaking,
N) The opinions of TDG supersede any other jive turkeys posting frivolous fluffery, in response to something stated within a posting. All Hail TDG!!
O) Oops… disregard last article,
P) Gotta p, and get ready.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

If my bologna had a first name, I expect it might be “Arthur”, or “James”. Oscar is OK, but hardly my first choice.

I’ve never, ever gotten “steaming mad at dirt”. Although I did once get pretty upset about a cassette deck that wouldn’t work, so I tried to massage it awhile with a hammer. Boisterously. It had to be replaced.

“Got Milk”? Bologna!! How about “Got Chocolate”? Now THERE’S a campaign I could get behind!

I often find myself wondering “where’s the beef” when I’m eating tofu turkey. I know, it’s not even the right species, but come on, tofu??

I understand mustard has gotten considerably older over the years. Is that why they call it “grey” Poupon??

(I fear this post may have peaked back at “my bologna has a first name…” However, I forge ahead – “Just Do It”, as they used to say. Even if “it” might be better left alone…)

One of the best massage therapists I ever had was named Allstate. I was in pretty good hands with him… Although Wanda used to do a pretty good job as well.

Carrots – they don’t melt in your mouth, nor in your hands.

A diamond is forever? How about dinner time telemarketers???

I wonder if Billy the Kid used to think that there were some things that money just couldn’t buy. So for everything else, there were sixguns?

(Now I’m POSITIVE that I peaked this post back at the start. Must find a graceful exit…)

Q - What did the crowd at the finish line tell the first infant that completed a long-distance marathon?
A – “You’ve come a long way, baby”!!

Chow for now!!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


Proof That WE Live In The TZ…

It all started back when we first moved to Calgary. Mrs. That Dan Guy and I were staying in a suite until our house purchase closed, unaware of Rod Serling’s impending involvement in our lives.

One day after returning from running around, we found a small pink face cloth in the bathroom (restroom). This little cloth blighter inexplicably stayed with us for the rest of our term in that unit.

Then, and I may be missing one incidence here, but we went to Las Vegas, where certain smart-arse family members (ahem…) had a pink face cloth delivered to our room. I don’t think we can include that legitimately in our occurrences of appearance, although one could hardly dispute that a towel is a towel, however it happened upon us.

Incidentally, that particular towel, as well as the rest of the contents of the accompanying swag delivered to our room, was subjected to a Department Of Homeland Security search. I can only imagine what went through the mind of the poor officer that day, as he looked at that sad little face cloth, and wondered how it came to be delivered that day. Along with salt water taffy, a green plastic hat with playing cards adhered to the crest, and other assorted paraphernalia. This, dear readers, is indeed typical, in the Such Is Life experience…

Moving forward, when we were in San Francisco, towards the end of last year, on the second day of our stay we returned from break fast to find in our room – A PINK FACE CLOTH!!! Doo doo doo doo, doo doo doo doo…

This face cloth, despite our every effort to the contrary, remained in our room the entire stay. It was even cleaned occasionally, then returned, and placed in a place of prominence in our bathroom (restroom). It became a bit of a game, leaving it around for housekeeping to pick up and remove, but apparently in The Twilight Zone, linens are permanent. Too bad decent coffee and cushy pillows didn’t make the list.

On our last day, we lingered over coffee before checking out, and had one last laugh together, as we bid farewell to the mysterious pink face cloth. We departed for Reno, in an entirely different state.

Once we arrived at our hotel and checked in, we took an elevator up to our room. As we were walking down the long hallway to our room, we noticed what seemed (from a distance), to be packaging, or garbage laying in the hallway, way down the corridor we were walking along.

The picture above is what we stumbled upon once we reached our room. Our room! With a face cloth lying in the hall, right outside our door!!!!!!!!

How is this even possible, you may well ask? Welcome, to our world…

Chow for now!!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Morning.

Morning has broken.

Broken may be a bit of an overreaction, I suppose. It has (Morning) at the very least arrived. It does seem to be a bit bruised – perhaps Morning was playing some sort of rough sporting game or something. Or perhaps Morning took an accidental trip down a flight of stairs. How am I supposed to know? I am hardly Morning’s keeper.

I’m barely my own keeper…

Mrs. That Dan Guy and I tuned in to the Golden Globes broadcast last night – a generally well-run affair. Many of the award winners were ones that we had been rooting for, except for poor Brad Pitt – his delightful “Curious Case Of Benjamin Button” continued to be ignored by award voters. Don’t let that stop you from running out to see it though – the movie is truly terrific.

I note that the big winner of the past two award shows, Slumdog Millionaire has dropped entirely OFF of the Top 10 movie rankings, after riding the #10 position almost since opening. I must admit, from previews it does look pretty good as well.

Maybe if I didn’t have so much to worry about (Morning arriving all disheveled), I could investigate this movie a bit further, and determine if we’ll see it in the theatres, or wait until it hits the TV movie networks.

For now, I gotta go find some liniment. Morning is moaning like a big wuss…

Chow for now!!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

January 11th. 1 11.

Are there any numerologists, or astrologists out there, that might be able to enlighten me on the relevance of 1 11, 11:11, 12:34 and such??? I swear, those numbery things are just about everywhere I look…

Of course, it could all settle down after I’m finally able to purchase the Mac computer serial # 1111 1234 5678 90…

Hey, we finally got around to watching the Academy Award-winning film from last year, “Juno” last night. There’s loads of Canada ties and Canadian talent involved in that movie, so when it appeared on one of our many cable movie stations, we recorded it to watch. Which we did last night – what, did you drift away or something??

At any rate, yet another delightful movie. We could easily understand why it not only won the award(s) that it did, but also why it was also a commercial success. The young actress in the starring role did a splendid job as the title character, a quirky young mom-to-be. Well, not to give anything away, but the plot is really all about her giving way the baby, so maybe that description isn’t completely accurate.

Regardless, if you haven’t seen this flick, try finding it. It shouldn’t be too hard, especially here in Canada – you see the DVD everywhere. But please, make sure you read the title correctly. You want to buy or rent “Juno”, NOT “Juneau”, which features a quirky young polar bear mom-to-be, which was not an Academy Award winning film.

Or "Juno Awards", which are the Canadian equivalent of The Grammies...

Chow for now!!

Saturday, January 10, 2009


Chicken Scratch

Well, hello there, you handsome humans…

Hen Rietta here today – I finally managed to get some computer time away from that grumpy old reprobate Charles. He’s nursing a hangover anyway, so allow me to share a few thoughts with you today…

C-C-C-C-CLUCK!

It is entirely possible that I am the only person in this household that has made a New Year’s resolution. And that resolution is…TO BECOME A FAMOUS WRITER!!

Hey, if other delusional dumb-heads here think they can pull it off, why not me??

C-C-C-C-CLUCK!

So, you may think that I hope to become a poet. You simplistic, sexist pigeon-holer!! Just because I’m a woman, you think the only writing I could possibly be capable of is poetry???

Far from it. I intend on writing fiction, full, book-length fiction, with an eye to big-screen adaptation. What genre, you ask??

Why, Chick Lit, of course!!

C-C-C-C-CLUCK!

Here’s a small sample, from a piece I’ve just started, tentatively entitled “The Perfect Man”:

Arthur was standing on the stoop of my brownstone when I opened the door, flowers in hand, and obviously freshly showered. His warm, gentle smile belied the naughty thoughts that were coursing through his mind, as he timed exactly how long it would take to tenderly ravage me after dinner…”

C-C-C-C-CLUCK! (mercy…)

There’s more, but you’ll have to pay the piper if you want to enjoy the music.

Cluck for now!!

Friday, January 09, 2009

Today’s Agenda:

1) Continue to (slowly) wake up. Shake off grogginess.

2) Have first cup of coffee – crucial component of waking strategy. Brain computes caffeine with stimulation.

3) Watch BT (Breakfast TV) – local show that doesn’t clutter your waking brain with too much news. Lots of brain-pleasing fluff, bright and shiny…

4) Listen to Mrs. That Dan Guy scamper animatedly around the house, as she bustles through her own morning rituals. MTDG clearly has too much energy for this ungodly time of day. NOTE: check to see what SHE puts in her morning coffee.

5) Finally get around to having a cookie or two, to begin stimulation of dopey brain cells. Realize that much of my mornings revolve around “stimulation”. Can that be a good thing??

6) Finish first cup of coffee, begin slow, groggy ascension upstairs to post blog, so as to bring joy to my legions of fan(s). Invariably, this daily contribution to cyberspace is the linchpin of my creative day. Although sometimes I do doodle on napkins.

7) Shave, shower, other “s” things – drive MTDG to work. As per usual, stop on the way home to enjoy a cup of tea or latte with other creative types (kills time before “The Price Is Right” airs).

8) Watch “The Price Is Right”. Turns out Drew Carey isn’t such a bad host after all. Bob Barker must be happy, wherever he is golfing and chasing squirrels…

9) OPTIONAL: Watch “The Young & The Restless”. With the glacial speed of the plotlines, today may be a “skip day”, although Fridays often feature a cliffhanger.

10) 30 minute nap, before lunch. To keep my wits sharp.

11) Lunch – something nutritious, and healthy, but also stimulating enough to add a bit more “stimulation” to my day.

12) Wash down plate of dry soda crackers with soda pop, before sneaking in ice cream bar I happened to find while stopping earlier at the mall for tea or latte. Set wrapper aside to drive to remote garbage can, so as not to have apparent when MTDG inspects the cans at home. God bless her, she does look after my best interests…

13) Organize my writing tasks for the day, but get briefly (half an hour) distracted by some TV judge show – I really should have shut that damn TV off before I broke for lunch.

14) Once writing has been organized, I get down to business, with the steely resolve that I am known for. There are four computer games I play each day before I begin writing, and I will play each of those games until I have won each at least once.

15) Take short break – by now it is typically 3:30 PM, and I have to start winding my way down, before I begin to make my way back into town to pick up MTDG. Plus, I have to set the video recorder for the evening’s TV broadcasts.

16) Reflect briefly as I drive in to pick up my beloved, on how fast a work day seems to fly by. You just don’t seem to have enough hours in the day, I swear…

Chow for now!!

Thursday, January 08, 2009


I will admit to feeling a little sluggish this morning. As does Mrs. That Dan Guy. We have no reasonable explanation, we’re just tuckered out. There is a strong possibility that we both ran a marathon while we were dreaming, and we’re simply drained from the effort that we put out.

I, of course, came in Third Place (nursing an ingrown toe-nail)– a personal best for dream marathons. Poor MTDG – she came in Third Last, but you still have to admire her effort – it isn’t easy to maintain your focus when they line up the course alongside so many shoe stores…

Hey, speaking of horsepower, yesterday’s column is online today (sometimes it takes awhile). You can read all about my long-standing love affair with trains, and the first-ever actual train ride we took over the Christmas holidays.

I expect a referral or testimonial fee from Amtrak, after they get their hands on this piece:

http://www.eventpub.com/stories.php?id=156837

Keep on chooglin’!!

Chow for now!!

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Happy Ukrainian Christmas (yes, there is such a thing…)!!

Now I can finally shut off my exterior holiday lights…

Does this mean that in a few more days, it will be Ukrainian New Year? I really need to get the skinny on all these potential extra holidays, so that I can present my case for taking those days off. With my gruelling daily workload, I can always appreciate ANY extra time off.

We are currently enjoying a brief reprieve from the winter chills that have been lingering the past few weeks. It was so nice yesterday, I even washed my car. I had forgotten what colour it was, under the film of grey splashed onto it by passing vehicles. The grey was far from an attractive option. Plus it looked like it had been hand-rolled in dirty flour or something – kind-of tie-dyed like they used to do with shirts and such back a few (30) years ago. A far cry from the sleek, glossy beast that it really is. Much like myself, of course.

Chow for now!!

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

We have done our own humble part to spur on the lacklustre economies of Canada and the United States, here in the Such Is Life household.

Since Christmas Day, we have seen three terrific movies, on both sides of the border. Nobody can say that we aren’t trying to stimulate the economy, if not our taste buds as well (man, you can never get enough $10.00 movie popcorn – seriously, even in a combo, how is that a value??).

It all started Dec 25th, with “The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button”. While everyone else was scrambling to jam into theatres across North America to view a slobbering dog, we chose to kick off the holiday movie season with a delightful, whimsical movie filled with quirky characters. And it was a great movie! Our buttered thumbs were way up for this highly recommendable flickering picture.

The very next day, it was off to see Will Smith’s new movie, “Seven Pounds”. A weeper to be sure, quite inventive, and also highly recommendable. It all comes together in the last leg of the movie, but both Smith and co-star Rosario Dawson make the journey worth the wait. Again, buttery thumbs way up.

Last night, back in Canada, we had advance screening tickets to Clint Eastwood’s new movie, “Gran Torino”. WHAT A GREAT MOVIE!! Part “All In The Family” pushing the envelope of bigotry and a cranky old fart, part study of integration and aging, this movie will be yet another award-winner for Grandpa Eastwood. I’m sorry, you just can’t help but love his character in the movie, even though the screenplay goes out of its way to ensure that you might not.

I’m not sure which of these new movies I would recommend the most – maybe all three, for entirely different reasons. I guess we’ll see the dog movie when it comes to Super Channel, or Movie Central. For now, we must put away the magical world of movies, and concentrate on stimulating another part of the slumping economy – we’ll pick up some Starbucks, on our drive into Mrs. That Dan Guys’ work…

Chow for now!!

Monday, January 05, 2009

What a burden, lifted off of my shoulders!

This is the first year I have foregone ill-fated resolutions, and has it ever been a win-win for the ole TDG:

* No wacky diets to try and lose a hundred pounds by March.

* No lofty goals to try and get more done by spring.

* No promises not to pester Mrs. That Dan Guy while she tries to get ready for work in the morning.

* No softening on my Mac position (Daddy needs a Mac).

* No broccoli, parsnip, rutabaga, cauliflower, tree roots added to my daily food plan.

Resolutions – who needs ‘em???

Chow for now!!

Sunday, January 04, 2009

I could be a polar bear...

I’ve already got “burly” going in my favour, so I just need to figure out how to grow more hair, and I’d be almost set.

Although, I do tend to shy away from cold temperatures, so maybe I’d have to be a tropical polar bear – one which maybe wouldn’t need as much of a thick coat of fur, so I’d be even closer to getting settled into my role.

What do polar bears eat? Fish? I don’t mind fish, although I believe polar bears can be a little uncivilized about their diet – “sushi” would be putting it mildly. I’m pretty sure they eat the whole sardine, scales, guts and all. Yuk!!

Maybe I could be a tropical, balding polar bear, with a taste for McDonald’s hamburgers? I’m sure your average polar bear must be getting sick and tired of a daily diet of fish and…what else do polar bears eat? Seals??

OK, THAT would never do. I’d be more likely to adopt a seal, than devour one. So, I’d have to be a tropical, balding polar bear, with an Interac or Visa card to purchase McDonald’s hamburgers, with my little seal buddies.

Or, maybe I should just be happy that I’m human, and let those uncivilized fur-bearing beasts alone up in the freezing North…

Clearly, it is time for my second cup of coffee…

Chow for now!!

Saturday, January 03, 2009


Chicken Scratch

Ho Ho Cluckin’ Ho…

Well, lookee here – looks like Banjo Brain finally figgered out howta post my column again!

BUK-AAAAWK!!!!

Sure, I know he said that I wuz on holidays, but the truth couldn’t be further from the cold, hard facts.

Exhibit A: I did provide columns for the past two weeks.

Exhibit B: I did provide photos for Dimwit D. Doughhead to post.

So, while he may have suggested me and the rest of the flock were unavailable, he was misleadin’ you, my smooth-skinned readers!

BUK-AAAAWK!!!!

And man, did you miss some terrific stuff! While my beak is still so sore frum typin’ those other posts, I can still let ya in on summa the highlights:

1) We recreated a nativity scene here with some of our ole barnyard pals. Which reminds me, we gotta get someone to repair the burn holes in the family room carpet – stoopid smokin’ donkey…
2) You humans ain’t the only folks that get visits from Santa Claus. Although, our Santa really DOES have claws…
3) It was so cold here over Christmas, we all were running around the house, covered in poultry bumps. OK, technically, we’d look like that anyways…

BUK-AAAWK!!!!

4) Santa answered my wish, with a BB gun under the tree. We’ll see how funny it is to leave ole Charlie behind next year, with a caboose fulla buckshot!!
5) We chickens have come to determine that the greatest Christmas album of all time was recorded by Canada’s own Celine Dion – whatta cluckin’ voice!!
6) Also a big hit onna TV this year – the recent movie remake of Alvin & The Chipmunks. Hey, they may have lived in a forest instead of a barn, but we animals gotta stick together. Two claws up!!
7) No matter how ya cut it, eggnog barf is about the grossest thing you will ever encounter in your life.
8) The chicken littles have an amazin’ capacity to consume tinsel. THAT ain’t gonna be pretty…

Gotta skitter. Time for Password, on the Game Show Network

Cluck for now!!

Friday, January 02, 2009

The Perpetual Case Of The Specific Number Viewings

Jan 2:

Noted that while we were watching Deal Or No Deal on New Year’s Day, one of the two contestants picked Case #11. On 01 01!!

In addition, later on in the broadcast, the winning “Beat The Banker” case was Case #1.

Getting harder and harder to escape this recurring number phenomenon, especially 11:11, 1:11, 11 - or simply plain old 1. And for it to happen on New Year’s Day, even weirder, if you ask me.

I am going to take that as an especially good sign for 2009…

*****************************************************

Hey, we managed to escape most of the brutally cold weather here in Cowtown while we were away on holidays, but today is going to be a reminder of just how cold Canada can get in the winter. About -30ÂșC here this morning, colder with the wind chill. I’m going to go out on a limb here, and suggest that our freshly planted tulips are doomed.

Speaking of holidays (which I am doing to get my mind off of my frostbitten kabuki), did I mention yet that the last movie we saw, before we headed off for holidays, was The Heartbreak Kid, starring Ben Stiller, and his dad Jerry?? Funny, movie, and chosen entirely randomly from our remaining inventory of unwatched flickering pictures on the PVR.

The movie just happens to be set in San Francisco, which was where we were off to the next morning. Repetitive number spottings, random previews of our travels – I am beginning to think that I may have been Nostradamus in a past life.

Or at least The Amazing Kreskin…

Chow for now!!

Thursday, January 01, 2009

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

Wow! My first column of 2009, the Chinese “Year Of The Mac” (seriously – it is true).

This promises to be a grand year, despite the prevailing economic doom and gloom. I’m setting some lofty personal goals, many of which will likely be tapped out on what I expect will be my first reliable computer since 2007. I am all a-tingle!!

Say, speaking of Mac, here’s something interesting. I read an article in the newspaper a day or so ago, about Dame Edna Everage, who just happened to be the single show we were able to take in over our two-week traipsing around and about San Francisco and Reno (Reno: We Ain’t No Vegas!).

Besides offering up a tremendous performance, the Dame appears to possess savvy business skills as well. She (he) has started a line of cosmetics. Which brand, you ask?

MAC cosmetics! I kid you not, as a professional, card-carrying non-kidder!! MAC cosmetics... The signs are all there, my friends, the signs are all there – Apple is whispering in my ear, ushering me over to a place of light and singing angels. I am powerless to resist, in this, “Year Of The Mac”.

Chow for now!!