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Saturday, February 28, 2009

Chicken Scratch

Aloha, humans!

Ole Charlie is scratchin’ his head this mornin’, after spottin’ this new-fangled egg up in one of the restrooms here in Chez Cuckoo. I ain’t ever seen one with writin’ on it before!!


I don’t know wut a “Ped-Egg” is, but the last time I looked at some eggs here, there ended up being three more little cluckers runnin’ around the house than I needed. I wonder how big the egg was that Hen Rietta arrived in?? Holy Over-Sized Spherical occurrence, Batman!!


This egg wuz in Mrs. That Dan Guy’s bathroom, and it weren’t in no refridgurator neither. It must be pretty gamey right about now. What’s the deal there? Is she secretly hopin’ for ANOTHER chicken in the household? Holy cluck, we already got more than the city by-laws permit, lemme tell ya!

Plenty more than we need, if ya ask me…


"Ped" in human talk has something to do with feet, I think. Would that make this a foot egg? I didn’t even know that wuz possible? How does a foot lay an egg?

First he buys it a drink…HA HA HA HA HA HA!!!!!

Sorry, just a little bad chicken humour there…


Well, I better keep an eye on this revoltin’ new development. The last thing I need is one more pluckin’ poultry pal around this joint. We’re up to our pinfeathers in addle-headed chickens already!! It’s more than one poor bird can bear…

Cluck for now!!

Friday, February 27, 2009


Got a look at myself in the mirror this morning, and it wasn’t pretty!

NOTE: If your have a queasy stomach, you may want to begin thinking “happy thoughts” before you proceed with reading today’s post. Also, not a bad idea to consider using a “safe” word, to snap you out of any unsavoury image locks…

So, even though it’s been about -100 outside the past few days, for some reason or another I must have been wandering around the house without my pyjama top on this morning. As I was exiting our bathroom, I caught a glimpse of something shiny, something massive and shiny. When I focused my gaze, I was shocked to discover that it was my own reflection that had attracted my notice.

That was when I realized that I looked a bit like a freckled version of Casper The Friendly Ghost, with turkey arms. I mean, I’ve been white my whole life, but now it seemed that I was LITERALLY white!!

Here’s why that seems odd to me. I used to go for something called PUVA treatment, which is essentially a sun-tanning booth that is used as therapy for my dry skin condition, known in the 1970’s as “the heartbreak of psoriasis”. The treatment did tend to clear up the ill effects of that chronic skin condition, while also leaving me with a toned complexion, not unlike that of charismatic actor George Clooney. I’m not saying that people would stop me on the street and ask for autographs, but I would often find people lingering when I passed by on the street, as they wondered if I might actually be that award-winning star.

Now, back then, whenever Mrs. That Dan Guy and I were walking along a beach somewhere, we looked like a set of piano keys. Man, she was pale – like ecru, or faded beige paint colour choices. by a cruel twsit of fate, I had somehow become that way myself, and it was frightening!

We must get some sun…this Canadian prairie winter is turning us into pillars of chalk!!

Chow for now!!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Alright, let’s be honest here – the hare-brained idea to quit drinking coffee is just not happening. Sure, we’re down to one cup of instant coffee in the morning, but our madcap dreams of a caffeine-free lifestyle are about as dead as Brad Pitt’s Academy Award hopes this year. The dream has left the building…

In reflection of this brief but inspiring segment of our lives, I thought I would post a few memories of our short-lived wrestling endeavours with Java Joe:

- Mutually agreed to try to quit drinking coffee, entirely. On the very morning we failed to drip a fresh pot in the morning, I had to go outside and shovel freshly-fallen snow. Mrs. That Dan Guy (allegedly) inserts of handful of coffee grinds in her cheek, as if it were chewing tobacco.

- By the second day of trying to quit, the first side-effects are being felt. Mrs. That Dan Guy is blinking aggressively (in a clearly agitated state), like she’s trying to put out a fire in her eyeballs. I am weeping, on the inside…

- By Day Three we are experimenting with coffee replacements, such as lattes, espressos, and cappuccino salves. Plus we’re drinking instant coffee.

- Within a week, it is clear that we have failed. I know that Mrs. That Dan Guy carries the weight of the world on her shoulders for lacking the willpower to stare down a can of ground coffee beans, but I am at peace with the fight we were able to stage, for as long as we did. Besides, the coffee popsicles we were using as a placebo for the hot product sucked.

- To date, we are still just having one cup of instant coffee in the morning, and the occasional latte, to offset any ill effects, if by “occasional” you mean twice a day.

In summary, we stood our ground, and can proudly hold our heads up.

That helps to avoid spilling the hot coffee when we’re sipping it…

Chow for now!!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

My question today is:

When are you required to tip people, and what do you suppose the amount should be?”

Has anyone else noticed lately that whenever someone performs a task, they appear to be expecting some sort of tip for doing that?

There used to be a time when only pizza delivery drivers, Blackjack dealers and bookies needed to have their palms greased, but lately we’ve been noticing a number of varied folks that seem to be lingering for a bit of cashola.

Just last night, we picked up a rather hefty package at a store in the mall. We needed a bit of help to get it into our car. When the two dudes finished straining to lift it up into our vehicle, they both looked at me with an expectant “puppy dog” gaze, as if expecting a reward for their minor hernias. I said a hearty “THANKS”, but by the look they exchanged and shot back at me, clearly they had hoped to get a few loose shekels to spend at the local watering hole after work.

Earlier in the day, we had our new sofa set delivered. Again, the gentlemen that laboured to haul it upstairs, and down the hallway to our TV room seemed to be lingering, although it could have been that their legs had given out, I will admit.

Are these the sorts of services that require tipping now? I mean, in both cases, we bought a product, and expected delivery or assistance. Is that immediate qualification for beer money?

Man, I wish Ann Landers was still writing her column…

Chow for now!!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Quitting coffee – not going so good. We have completely abandoned the caffeine-free drink that we had briefly switched over to, and now routinely start our day with a cup of instant java. Still not as bad as the two or three cups from our drip machine which we were having every morning, but a far cry from shunning it altogether.

It’s funny. I’ve always considered myself to be one of those tough-as-nails, "unbreakable spirit" sorts that would have an iron will, allowing me to scoff at a tempting, aromatic cup of coffee. Mrs. That Dan Guy on the other hand, well, her middle name is Folgers – getting her to quit is like trying to convince a tornado not to ravage a mobile home park – it can’t be done. Some things are just genetic. I’m just personally a bit surprised to see that my steely marine-like determination just hasn’t been enough to overcome the addictive powers of coffee…

However, if we can keep our consumption down, we are on the right track, and maybe this is a progressive system for coming off of our cravings. Unless of course one day we suddenly find ourselves pouring a cereal bowl full of raw coffee beans, adding a heaping helping of milk, and chowing down maniacally to get our day underway.

Oh, the unkind mercy of temptation – whatever that means…

Chow for Joe...I mean now...

Monday, February 23, 2009

We are the Laurel & Hardy, Abbott & Costello, Disaster Duo of the home remodelling world, even if there are no tools involved. Even if we’re just removing furniture from a room…

This weekend, Mrs. That Dan Guy and I had to remove a small sectional sofa from our TV room, to make way for a new, improved set due to arrive sometime today. Nobody can blame the bad economy on US!!

Anyhow, it all seemed like such a simple task. We had an undersized sectional sofa set which we had spent weeks searching for, to accommodate the dimensions of the room it was destined for. We had a great salesperson, whom after the third hour of our agonizing over even the four choices for the colour of the set, excused himself to go weep in the basement stockroom. He’s now a Jesuit priest in a rural Saskatchewan village, but I understand his patience is about as slim still as it was back then.

This set seemed to be perfect after it arrived – it reclined, and had plenty of room for me to sprawl out on. By the second week though, MTDG hated it, likely because of her disdain for foam. Whatever the reason, the sectional’s days were numbered…

Fast forward two years, and I finally relented to what seemed like daily gripe fests, which MTDG would deliver every evening from a podium she had set up beside the sofa set, just before we settled in for the night to watch Cheers reruns on Deja View. To be fair, there were some signs of failure on the part of the sofa, as a bit of the fabric on my footrest had started to fester openly. The exposed foam may have been the last nail in the sofa’s coffin.

Saturday, after failing to sell the beast in prior newspaper ads, we had to haul it out to the garage, to make room for its replacement. The first of the three pieces was the worst, as we had a wee learning curve along the way out the door.

1) If your moving partner drops an end of a heavy sofa section without warning you in advance, there is a good chance that you may hurt yourself (and your best dress corduroys, which you should have changed out of before beginning this effort in pure folly). In my case, a strip of my looser knee flesh was sacrificed to the moving gods.

2) You may retaliate, by trying to reinstall a spring that has fallen off the recliner mechanism, and as it slips off of your tool, it will rocket straight out of the garage, removing (I kid you not) a portion of the flesh on your moving partner’s index finger. Man, can those things propel!!

3) If you are primarily as sedentary as a forest log in your day-to-day life, when you attempt to move something about the same size as a 1957 Buick, you may pull your back a bit. You may even, like myself, hear something like a bumbershoot shotgun pop, just before your shoulders settle onto your lower buttocks…

4) Basic rule of physics: Rough metal on bottom of sofa is much more durable than wood trim, drywall, and carpeting. Any repair tips for those items would be greatly appreciated…

5) If you, like myself are one of those men that scoffs at operation or assembly manuals, DO NOT alert your spouse after you are done to the fact that the sofa you have just repeatedly wounded yourself moving actually comes apart even more than you thought it did (with a few very simple levers), thereby allowing for a much easier relocation, with much smaller and lighter parts.

I’m sure we’ll appreciate the new sofa. Once we’re able to climb stairs again…

Chow for now!!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

True Confessions:

I have fallen grievously behind on my late-nite TV viewings, having not experienced my typical insomnia in many weeks now. Therefore, I have missed pretty much all of the recent antics by Leno, Letterman, and the like.

However, I did remember that this Tonight Show switchover was coming up, and when I went to research that on The Google, I discovered that last week featured the final 5 episodes of Late Night With Conan O’Brien. I show I typically never watch. However, when it’s down to the short strokes, I’m a sucker for emotional farewells. So I taped the entire run, and Mrs. That Dan Guy and I watched it as the week passed.

The first episode sort-of solidified why we never warmed to Conan – passably amusing, but likely more so to himself and his staff of writers. However, by the second and third shows, we were routinely cracking up – especially at some of the segments from past shows.

By the last two shows, we had no regrets with tuning in, and watching this passing of the TV torch. Will we watch him in his new Tonight Show spot?

Not likely, but best wishes nonetheless…

Chow for now!!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Chicken Scratch

“I’ll take “Places A Chicken Shouldn’t Pass Out”, for $200, Alex…”

Friday, February 20, 2009


Computers – the bane of modern mankind, I say! Bah Humbug!!!

Funny enough, my Vista computer has been behaving lately. Dare I say, it has even been semi-reliable. That, or I’ve just learned to live with the persistent quirks and failures.

My bane right now is an older computer, which we were trying to decommission. This is an older desktop model, which was running Windows ME – a short-lived Windows operating system that actually worked.

While I had done occasional backups over the years, I still had some pretty important files on there, so I was trying to clear those off, when it suddenly started to go all “Vista” on me. It crashed during boot-up, it crashed during operation, it crashed whenever I threw it against the wall. Finally, it would no longer finish the start-up process, so I knew I’d be spending more money, money on a computer that was ultimately destined for Seagull Mountain.

The problem was that I had never bothered to find a new computer guru here in Calgary, stubbornly sticking to my own limited skills.


What a buffoon…The only thing crazier than a client without a lawyer is a layperson without a technician. I needed to let my fingers do the walking, and find help PRONTO!!!

Which I did. The place I chose to bring the computer had the expertise to revive the beast long enough to transfer most of the data off, but I need to bring it back, with an external hard drive to transfer 9 years of e-mail. As a lifelong packrat, I have now extended that personality trait into Cyberland, and have valuable e-mails that I must retrieve, before I can send this old desktop off to the land of milk and recycling.

All of this will one day lead me down the path to Mac, and I will find salvation.

For now, just call me “Stubborn In Snowshoes”…

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Our recent efforts to quit drinking coffee aren’t going as well as we had hoped. We had switched to an instant product called Caff-Lib, to fill the gaping hole left by the abandonment of that glorious morning nectar of the gods. With absolutely no caffeine content though, we eventually were walloped upside our heads by withdrawal symptoms for a few days, which essentially felt like an 8-foot gong was going off in our heads. Plus we had the energy levels of a roll of paper towel.

To offset these side effects, we began to stop and pick up a latte everyday, but it turned out that even something that was supposed to just be boiled milk contained…ESPRESSO! Concentrated coffee! (Sweet mother of milk, that espresso is GOOD…)

One day, we missed our lattes, and the gong show returned. So we rummaged around in our pantry, and found the remains of an old jar of instant coffee. Which turned the bonging gong into the pleasing and gentle lapping of waves on a sunny beach.

However, instead of weaning ourselves off of coffee, we were now having a cup of instant coffee every morning, PLUS a latte just to ensure that the bongers would stay away. What a vicious circle!

Now, we must decide what route to take, because this is entirely crazy. Like most days around here, frankly.

Coffee, you are evil, but hard to leave!


Chow for now!!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

We are currently experiencing “Crab Withdrawal Syndrome”. After spending an entire week eating Dungeness Crab at least once a day back when we were in San Francisco, we find that we’ve been craving the little claw-clackers, a lot. Provided of course that they are freshly acquainted with a pot of boiling water, and healthy dollops of butter…

When I was grocery shopping the other day, I discovered by accident that our very own neighbourhood supermarket featured – LIVE DUNGENESS CRAB! And, they will steam the little culinary delights while you shop, so that you can just drive a couple of red steamers home, and introduce them to the good silverware.

Yesterday, Mrs. That Dan Guy and I could no longer take it. We agreed that I would pre-arrange a date with Dunkin’ Dungeness, and feast that very evening, to quench our constant craving.

Well, who knew St. Valentine would crimp our claws? Turns out the supermarket saw a run on crabs for Valentines Day, so the tank was barren, bereft. No crab to be had. Lonely is a world without crab.

More have been ordered. Sometime this week or next, we will enjoy our friendly crustacean friend’s company, once we get crackin’.

Until then, I guess a bowl of chowder will have to do.


Chow(der) for now(der)…

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

One day soon, I believe I will start to set aside a few notes – a topic or two that I can refer to when I’m sitting here every morning at the keyboard.

These topics or notes may very well be invaluable, especially on days that my muse is probably passed out on a beach somewhere in Florida, schnockered out on Schnapps. These are the Old Mother Hubbard mornings in the Such Is Life household: the creative cupboard is bare.

And yet, consistently I have pulled rabbits out of hats and ended up with some sort of posting, even if that particular rabbit looks like he was wrestling with my drunken muse, over a carrot lying in the sand.

To be honest, I’ve even gone to bed with a few ideas in my head, but by morning, they have vanished, like Paris Hilton’s recording career. I need to discipline myself, to record these passing thoughts, before they pass right on through, and leave me (once again – once too often) sitting here in front of my computer, with nothing to work with.

(And no dazzling Apple to inspire me in their absence…)

Hey, as a matter of fact, I do have something I wanted to bring up. Try and catch a few episodes of “Late Night With Conan O’Brien” this week, if you don’t already. This is the end of his late-nite run, before he takes over the Tonight Show in a couple of months. I’m not a huge fan, but “going-out-of-business” events are always full of unexpected surprises, and who knows who may end up appearing? What have you got to lose??

And if you happen to spot my muse in the studio audience, could you tell him to get his sorry ass back up here to Canada???

Chow for now!!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Another Monday morning – another new week begins. Funny, it looks just like the last one…

A quiet weekend at home, here in the Such Is Life household. I think we just hung out, and never even saw the light of day, aside from what little streamed through our curtains. Well, I did briefly shovel the walk, but that hardly counts for an outing.

We had plans. We thought we might do a bit of running around, but we both just had a touch of the monkey Saturday and Sunday. We never left the cozy confines of the house.

Part of our inertia could have stemmed from weaning ourselves off of coffee, something we’ve done in the past, but had clearly forgotten since the last go-round about all the niggly little side effects. Such as inertia, and POUNDING MIGRAINES!!!

Coffee, innocent little old coffee, is highly addictive, and when you try and quit consuming it, all the little caffeine soldiers begin to perform drills in your brain, essentially poking bayonets into the inside of your head, and setting off explosive devices once those stabbing pains subside.

We caved in late Saturday afternoon, and each had a cup of instant coffee, which finally brought some small amount of relief. We’ll probably have a cup of instant over the next few days, until the soldiers get reassigned, and our bodies can survive the initial ill side-effects of a caffeine-free lifestyle.

This would probably be a pretty good time to formally apologize to Starbucks, who will no doubt suffer the most with Mrs. That Dan Guy living a pure and decaffeinated existence…

Oh yeah, for those of you wondering how negotiations went over the weekend on an upcoming getaway possibility, all of the possible options were shot down in flames, including the original few options, the “new-hare-brained scheme”, an undisclosed option I hadn’t even bothered to mention here as yet, PLUS a last-minute Hail Mary proposal. We will instead use the time off to do something around the house, I suppose. There are numerous collections of dust bunnies under the beds here, which need to be inventoried for insurance purposes…

Chow for now!!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Chicken Scratch

In Loving Memory

Benny “Chicken Fingers” Cannole
Bobby “Comb-Over” Kasinski
Charles Clucker III
Tommy “Buk-Buk” BcCaww
Barry “Circumcise THIS!” Greenstein
Walter “Shake ‘N Bake” Sawatzky
Harry Pecker (Please, some respect for the dead. That was his real name…)
Anne “Snowbird” Marie
Kathleen Cluckety-Cluck (nee Cluckety)
Sally Eggdropper
Chicken D. Light
Kay Effe Sea

Friends and family mourn the sudden passing of these delightful and varied members of the poultry clan, all of whom quite frankly never saw it coming. No more will the bracing morning revelry of “COCK-A-DOODLE-DOO” stir these lost souls, unless there’s a Great Rooster up in heaven.

On a side note, for all you callous humans who enjoyed chicken fingers at the pub last night, or decided to stop on the way home to pick up a bucket of something finger-licking good, their blood is on your hands.

May you be ravaged by wolves while you sleep…

Cluck for now!!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

The Saturday Morning “Nobody-Asked-Me-To, But-Here-I-Go-Anyway” Concert Review – Cheech & Chong…

(or, Why I Will Never Be A Professional Concert Reviewer…)

Man, did I ever get a chance to relive my youth last night, man. It was, like groovy, man. Mrs. Wutz-Er-Name and I caught iconic stoner comics…umm…wait a minute…it’ll come to me…

Oh yeah – Cheech & Chong!

The reunited comedy duo are currently touring North America, reliving the glory days of their own youth, and flushing interesting audience members out of the bushes in the process. In some cases, you could have sworn it was 1970 on the fashion front, or that the bikers had been granted parole just to see this show when it swung through town. Harleys rule!!

I thought that the picture up at the top of this posting was appropriate – I’m pretty sure I’ve got some old Cheech & Chong 8-track tapes stored somewhere in the basement. I must root around sometime.

So, how were they? Well, for iconic stoners, they were pretty sharp. They offered up film clips from their career and movies, plus interspersed updates of some of their classic comedy routines, along with some fine stand-up by Tommy Chong in between the skits. There’s nothing lost there - these two are still sharp as tacks, and the stand-up was insightful as anyone pounding the boards currently. When Cheech came out in his tutu to rock out to “Earache My Eye”, well, it was just like putting on a comfortable pair of old shoes. Awesome. Ending the performance with an assistant bringing out a walker to help him get offstage, even more awesome…

And, I was unaware until I read in the paper before the show that Tommy Chong grew up in Calgary, and MET Cheech here before they teamed up. So Calgary was a bit of a home-coming for this legendary team. Pretty cool.

Hey, these guys should catch up with current stoner comics Judd Apatow and Seth Rogan, and really get their careers back into high gear – “Pineapple Express II – Up in Smoke’???? It boggles the mind.

Now, let me reassure you here, we may have been the only straight attendees in the concert hall last night, but we stilled laughed our asses off. That’s right, I said asses – there were far worse words routinely coming from the stage last night, and I could never, ever keep with the spirit of my postings and quote any of them. If you know who Cheech & Chong are, you shouldn’t be too surprised to believe that the show was about as politically incorrect and crude as humanly possible.

And painfully hilarious…

Chow for now!!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Friday the 13th !

Be careful out there today, folks…

1) Don’t walk under a ladder.
2) Don’t spill salt without following that up by throwing some over your shoulder.
3) Don’t dress up a black cat with a hockey mask and machete.
4) Don’t break a mirror.
5) Don’t fax a picture of your naked buttocks to a random Home Depot outlet.
6) Do not lose your lucky rabbit’s foot, unless the rabbit manages to break free from your clutches.
7) Do not bet on red.
8) Do not juggle 13 chainsaws, or 13 bowling balls.
9) Don’t stop, believing. Hold on to that feeling.
10) Don’t let the dogs out.

Don’t say I didn’t warn you…

Chow for now!!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Alright, I know I tend to make a big deal out of this repetitive/consecutive number thing, but last night the phenomenon took a step right back into The Twilight Zone.

We finished watching “American Gangster”, with Denzel Washington, and Russell Crowe (great movie, by the way…). We had stopped it the night before at exactly one hour and eleven minutes, completely by what we thought was fluke or coincidence. 1:11.

However, last night, before we made it to the end, we had to stop the broadcast briefly.

AT 2:22!!!!

How is that even possible?? Another random moment, another set of repetitive numbers.

What’s it all about, Alfie??

While we’re on the topic of odd and unusual, I breezed an idea past Mrs. That Dan Guy last night, and instead of having it summarily dismissed, she’s actually got some interest in what I pitched.

This is a little hare-brained scheme I came up with, to confuse us further with the three choices we were still mulling over for next month (Mac laptop, Coachella Music Festival, or Vegas).

We have to check out a few related items with respect to this latest addition to our choices, but if we decide to go with that thought instead…well, that just makes it a four-way horse race, doesn’t it???

Chow for now!!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Bear with me folks – I’ve got another unfocused rambling here today and worse yet, it’s about number appearances again.

It is a bit appropriate though, today being the 11th, as my most common frequent number sighting is either 11, 1:11, or 11:11. Even more appropriately, today is 02 11 09. If you add up the 02 and the 09, that makes today 11 11. Spooky right??

Last night, we were watching a movie that I had recorded a day or so ago. “American Gangster”, with Denzel Washington, and a bunch of other people. Early on in the movie, the “good cop” played by Aussie actor Russell Crowe (oh yeah, he’s also in the movie…) busts down a motel room door, to get at a snitch (canary, squealer, informant). What door, of all the choices the movie makers could have conjured up? Room 111!!!

I know! Freaky!!

Anyhow, it is a long movie (very enjoyable so far, I would add), so we had to stop to head to Sackville (our bedroom, NOT the city in the Maritime area of Canada – that would be one heck of a commute). So, I pressed the pause button to see where we were at, and what time do you suppose, out of a three-hour stretch, did I happen to pause the recording at? One hour, and eleven minutes. One freakin’ hour, and eleven flippin’ minutes!!

There is something out there trying to speak to me, and I am hard of hearing. Universe, you are totally freaking me out!!

Chow for now…

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

We are a little dopey here today, in the ole Such Is Life household. Sluggish, and slow-going.

In one of the crazier moves that we attempt to pull off every now and then (often dictated by well-intended motives), we are on our second day of giving up coffee. And, it shows. A snail being chased by a housecat would have more zip-a-dee-doo-dah. A glacier would be pulled over by a traffic cop, compared to our forward motions today.

Why give up coffee, you may well ask? Well, even if you didn’t, the reasons are many. However my brain at this caffeine-deprived moment can’t think of a single good one.

Here are some of the reasons, in no particular order, without the benefit of coffee to stimulate the reasoning areas of my brain:

1) Tie a yellow ribbon, ‘round the old oak tree.
2) Chicken pot, chicken pot, chicken pot pie,
3) You deserve a break today,
4) The dingo stole my baby,
5) You can’t handle the truth,
6) I’m Henry the Eighth, I am,
7) Leapin’ Lizards,
8) You put the lime in the coconut, and stir it all up.

I’m not sure if that clears it up, but it sure feels better, having had a brief opportunity to explain this crazy new direction we have recently taken.

I am so friggin’ tired right now………………………………

Chow for now!!

Monday, February 09, 2009

We have not yet watched The Grammy Awards, which were broadcast across the country last night. We recorded them, but intend on skipping through the 3-hour + broadcast over the course of the week. So please, don’t tell us who wins for Best Flamenco Bagpipe Recording – we will be devastated!!

What did we watch instead, you ask? Well, even if you didn’t, we ended up watching a couple of previously recorded shows on our PVR.

We cleared off a broadcast of Austin City Limits, the long-running PBS concert series, recorded somewhere in Texas I believe - they’re never very clear about that in the show. Wherever it is recorded, this one was terrific – Nick Lowe performing a solo acoustic set, and "The Swell Season", essentially the amazing couple from the recent movie “Once”. Their song won the Academy Award last year (Best Musical Performance In A Drama Or Musical NOT Featuring Flava Flav), and we have become fast fans. I wonder when THEY might come to Calgary…

Then we watched what I suspect may be a little known movie with Helen Hunt and Bette Midler. A bit of a melodrama, but overall very well written and performed – we really enjoyed it. Where exactly has Helen Hunt been lately, anyhow? Ever since Mad About You went off the air, you barely see her in anything! She is a very enjoyable actress, and with this film she co-wrote, directed, produced and starred. Surely to Pete if she just added “Knocked Up”, or “Pineapple Express” to the title of her movies, people would find out about them?? It is a darn shame, let me tell you…

So, there you have it. We weren’t watching anything in particular, but we also weren’t watching The Grammy Awards. But we will. That’s a fact. I do love me my fast-forward...

Chow for now!!

Sunday, February 08, 2009

I sit today, at the crest of a large, looming decision which MUST be made today. There have been discussions, and we have see-sawed back and forth over the choices, here in the Such Is Life household.

Well, it’s a large and looming decision for US, because we need to decide one way or the other on three different options, so as to go ahead and make some flight plans for some of the possibilities:

1) Coachella, 2009. In mid-April, this is a huge outdoor music festival in sunny California. Which typically would never really be of much interest us old farts. However, this year the lineup includes Paul McCartney, Amy Winehouse, Canada’s legendary Leonard Cohen, and many, many more stellar performers we are fans of. So, for Mrs. That Dan Guy’s next bit of pending holiday time, this has become a contender in our three-way race for general amusement.
2) Vegas, in March. Again, falling into the time frame that MTDG needs to use holiday time, there are a few acts we might head south to see, in glitzy Vegas showrooms. Even though technically we have just RETURNED from Vegas only a few short weeks ago, neither one of us has much strength when it comes to resisting the siren song lure of Las Vegas. If most people eventually retire to Florida or Arizona, we will most likely end up living under the giant golden lion, outside the entrance to MGM…
3) Stay at home - and finally use my birthday coupon to buy a Mac. While this would still allow MTDG to take some time off, and simply stay at home surrounded by the awe and wonder of an actual functional computer system, we are really on the fence over this option. I have come to determine that many of my computer woes with Windows Vista are related to some sort of interference somewhere here in our house – it works fine whenever we are elsewhere, like...say…LAS VEGAS!!!

(Ironically, while I was putting this post together, and trying to discount Option #3, my wireless keyboard disconnected from the computer, and a back-up stopped the whole system in its tracks, which is why today’s blog is appearing so late. Can I wait until August for Mac? We’ll just have to see…)

There you have it folks – three entirely opposing possibilities, of which we will have to choose only ONE before the sun sets on today.

It is anyone’s guess which option will bubble up to a glitzy, casino-filled first-place decision…

Chow for now!

Saturday, February 07, 2009

(Press “PLAY” button to view video…)

Chicken Scratch

Holy Cluck!!


Man, a bird takes 5 little minutes to grab a quick cat-nap, and suddenly the Medic-Alert Morons spring inta action!

There I wuz, hassin’ myself a brief siesta the other day, and suddenly I got a giant, human hand compressing my chest, and Hen Rietta comin’ in outta nowhere, to slip me some wet ole chicken tongue!! GROSS!!


And all the while, I wuz inna middle uva inkredibul dream about Scarlett Johansson, as the finest chicken I ever did see! Floss my feathers and call me slick!!

Well, at least they didn’t cause any permanent damage – thank the Great Bird that I’m built like a Swiss clock, an I'm tougher than the gubernator of California!


What is up with that wingy chick Henny? Good golly, if I wanted my tonsils dusted, I woulda chugged a coupla beers!! Cluckin’ hell…

I guess from now on, I gotta sleep with one eye open, lest some eager-beaver, Dudley Do-Rights swoop in ta “rescue me” again.

For the love a Pete…

Cluck for now!!

Friday, February 06, 2009

I’m starting to wonder if it’s not too late. Too late for me to maybe consider becoming an Ironman triathlete…

What’s involved in those competitions? A bit of running; a few feet of bicycling, and then a brisk, refreshing swim?? What’s so hard about that??

Even being a bit on the husky side, I’m pretty sure that I could handle all of those hurdles, depending on the length or duration of each portion of the event and the actual existence of hurdles on the route. I’ve never been much of a jumper. Unless you count when Mrs. That Dan Guy needs me to repair something in the house, then I put on my superhero cape, and jump right on that.

First off – running. I’ve got some experience there. I imagine you may even call me a bit of a gazelle, if you were to see me sprinting out of bed in the morning, eager to embrace the day. With a bit of focused training, I could be part Kenyan on the racetrack. Especially if you had a car with a box of donuts driving just ahead of me – THERE’S some motivation!!

Next, bicycling. Boy, did I ever bicycle as a kid. As an adult, I wasn’t particularly fond of where the bicycle seat seemed to keep intruding, so I grew less fond of that exercise. I’m sure that with a bit of remedial effort (and thicker bicycle shorts), I could be the Lunch Armstrong of the Ironman bicycle circuit.

Finally, the swimming portion of the competition. Who doesn’t enjoy a refreshing swim? I’m buoyant by nature, so I would just have to learn how to propel more efficiently. Surely they must have invented more aerodynamic water-wings by now? And, as luck would have it, I’ve been looking for a reason to shave my chest and arms – this HAS to be it!!

So there you have it. Even as an elderly competitor, I think I have a pretty good chance.

Better find some time to hit the gym later this afternoon…

Chow for now!!

Thursday, February 05, 2009

It’s about time I tried my hand at inventing something (again).

For too long, I have taken a passive position with respect to my workplace (home office). The space “rules” me, NOT the other way around (tyrannical work space!!).

So, I’m trying now to sketch out a few ideas, to see which one best suits the way I work (such as that might be).

One thought, and this is just me tossing things out there, is a bank of big-screen TVs on the walls of my home office - along with a surround sound system, so that I can capture interesting things that happen throughout the day, to write about later in the afternoon (after “Siesta Hour”, and Judge Judy). This option is appealing, because it allows me the convenience of staying in my office, yet also allows for the mental stimulation necessary for a creative mind (a mind that is constantly distracted by balls of string).

Another thought, is a very Spartan d├ęcor, with a hammock, and a suspended holder for my computer. This would allow me to nurse my various aches and pains, whilst maximizing a relaxed work space, so as not to bruise my fragile aura. Picture this – the writer at work in his suspended hammock, rocking gently side to side, and occasionally tapping at a computer (MAC!!) that is doing exactly the same, maybe even on a patented little hammock of its own! It assaults the senses, doesn’t it??

My last thought (the only one that grumpy ole Mrs. That Dan Guy endorses) is a clearer work space, effected via a few old milk crates piled up on one another, with maybe a candle so that my harsh, uninspiring writer’s garrotte will allow me to at least see the neglected columns and articles piled on the milk crates, gathering dust as I am completely unmotivated to attend to them.

So, one of those options will likely be the winner. Cross your fingers, I present to the committee (G.O. MTDG) this weekend!!

Chow for now!!

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

I have determined that I will learn how to fly.

How hard can it be, really? Birds do it, heck – even squirrels do it, and they don’t have wings! So why can’t a human as the most superior of all the species do it??

Of course, I am considerably heavier than the average bird (or squirrel for that matter), but airplanes are even larger than me, and they routinely fly all around the world. I just need to develop some sort of propulsion system.

I know what you’re thinking – I’m a guy, and men often possess a powerful propulsion system provided entirely by Mother Nature. Well, while that is indeed a force to be reckoned with here in the Such Is Life household, to date that explosive force has been unable to induce full flight, excepting Mr’s That Dan Guy’s consistently hasty departure from the room.

So, the plan is to either BOOST that natural propulsion system (how much chili can one man consume?), and extend the frequency, or come up with something scientific and external. The fact that I have never been able to master a simple toaster after 50 years of usage indicates that the latter option may never see the light of day, unless someone else does the actual development…

So, for now, stand back folks! I’ve got a basket full of breakfast burritos, and a dream to fly! The sky’s the limit!!!!!

Chow for now!!

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

In the non-televised sitcom that is the Such Is Life household, the latest running gag is the regular appearance of a Post-It note, with the words “Kiss Mah Grits” written on it.

The sticky part has long since dried up – replaced now by fresh pieces of tape, for the note to adhere to whichever surface either of us has chosen, in passing it on to one another.

It has appeared inside the refrigerator, on work documents, inside fresh underwear and socks – and this morning, under the lid to the toilet bowl. Essentially anywhere.

The fun now is letting a few days pass between sightings, so as to maximize the gag effect (that would be gag as in funny ha-ha, NOT prelude to vomiting, or binding with ropes. Man, the English language is SO complex…)

This note exchange the past week or so is pretty typical of the average day here – if it’s not one thing, it’s another. Chickens running around loose, spontaneous singing and dancing, tumbling acts – it is a freakin’ circus, here in the Such is Life household.

I’d like to suggest that I am the ringmaster, but there’s one ham in particular that would challenge that statement…

Chow for now!!

Monday, February 02, 2009


WHAT a Superbowl half-time show! That has to have been the best performance IN RECORDED HISTORY!! And man, do I EVER have to see Springsteen live now – the guy is just amazing!

And that guy that sings for him – WOW! Springsteen may play a mean guitar, and pull off a bandana head wrap, but that vocalist could strike out on his own – he’s that good! And a lot more charismatic than Springsteen himself, if truth be told. But that could just be me.

By the way, doesn’t Bruce look an awful lot like that actor from The Sporano’s??

At any rate, barring cloning or zombie technology that could bring The Beatles back together, or someone forcing Elvis out of hiding, they may as well just cancel any future half-time shows – NO ONE will be able to recapture the magic and explosive force that chewed up the stage yesterday – what a freakin’ rock show!!!!!

PS: Why doesn’t this guy tour through Canada, other than one measly stop in Toronto? We have a tower here! We host the goddam Calgary Stampede, for Pete’s sake!

I’ve got to start a letter-writing campaign, or something. We are seriously being ripped off here.

Chow for now!!

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Happy New Month!!

(For those of you out there that celebrate that sort of thing – PS - make sure your tin foil hat doesn’t have any new holes in it!! Mars broadcasts new programs every 1st of the month.)

Super bowl today! For those of us here in Canada, it will be yet another year of missing out on all the great U.S. commercials that advertisers have spent so much money to run during the broadcast. That’s right, due to "Canadian Content" laws, our networks insert Canadian ads over the American ones. Instead of hilarious beer commercials, we get spokespeople dressed up as beavers, reminding us to make our annual dentist appointments. It is truly sad.

Oh well, at least we’ll still get to see Springsteen during the half-time show. At least they don’t black that out (yet), and force us to watch Anne Murray, Shania Twain, or Celine Dion. Even though that wouldn’t be so bad, not that I’ve written it out like that.

So, think of us here in Canada as you hoist your fine American beers, chew on your fine American pretzels, and are allowed by a benevolent government to watch insanely expensive advertisements. We’ll have our local beaver person, and have to be thankful that the Canadian government cares about our dental hygiene…

Chow for now!!