Tuesday, January 30, 2007

OBPOPCULTREF infiltrates the Post.com

As I begin my assault to be the ultimate digital mouthpiece, I am starting with WaPo.com chats, and then moving on to bigger fish, like 19 year old girls' LiveJournals.

There's no stopping me.

explaining The Decemberists from Virginia: I have a few The Decemberists tracks on my computer, and I've found they tend to stick out in even the most diverse playlists. I'll admit that the singing is shaky and the lyrics range from poetry to pretentious, but there's just -something- about them - that same something that causes some people to go bananas over ugly damned hairless dogs with bulgy eyes. The average dog owner looks at those mangy beasts and rolls their eyes in disbelief, but the person who loves that troll dog REALLY loves that troll dog.

I guess The Decemberists are my troll dog amongst a sea of Replacements' collies and Trashcan Sinatras' retreivers.

J. Freedom du Lac: This is a very good explanation. Thanks, I really appreciate this one!

Monday, January 29, 2007

Instant Karma Granted

To the idiot with the stupid "Farms are our Future" Maryland tags - coming from a state with next-to-no-working farms in nearly 30% of its land and a future firmly stocked in biotech, military and sprawl - in the reddish, early 2000s sedan on the DC-section of I-395 on Saturday morning. Hope the traffic ticket was worth it.

That road, even under light traffic loads, is not designed for high-speed cruising. Just because it says it's an interstate doesn't mean you can cruise at 90MPH. Too many on-ramps, off-ramps, left-side exits, ending lanes, confused tourists - it's just not an easy drive.

It gets worse when natives decide to crank up their four-cylinders to near Ludicrous Speed. This includes Mr. Maryland Farmer. Maryland Farmer decided to pass me at 75, 80 MPH, a difference of nearly 30 MPH, just before the 395 split towards the Capitol. No big deal - Lord knows I've been passed before - but I was slowing down to avoid a Slow-Poke Country Boy in the City in front of me who was terrified of making a lane change. As he stuttered into the right lane, a Normal Guy on My Left slowed down too, as Slow-Poke didn't have a damned clue. Slow-Poke attempted his right lane change three times, and though he had plenty of room, he got scared, swerved back left, overcompensated, and scared the Normal Guy on My Left. They were at matching speeds at this point, about 40.

Mr. Maryland Farmer decided that he wasn't going to wait for any of this foolishness, and passed me, Slow-Poke and Normal Guy by *MAKING* his own passing lane in between Slow-Poke and Normal Guy. He invented a lane, coming within an inch or so of both vehicles. Given Slow-Poke's timidness and lack of coordination, I'm amazed those two didn't collide - which surely would have gotten me either into the Jersey wall, those two cars, or some combination of the two.

But Mr. Maryland Farmer squeezed through there, and even though I saw it with my own eyes, I'm still not sure how he made it. A half-second either way, and there's a big collision on 395, and the traffic reporters on WTOP would mention the mess that this accident would surely create. He was driving like an asshole - a skilled asshole - but an asshole nonetheless.

Not even a mile later, before the 395/295 split, Mr. Maryland Farmer was pulled over on the side of the road, as an unmarked police officer, lights ablaze, caught his antics, and was putting an end to this one-man reign of road terror.

Of course, being about as gracious as Veruca Salt in "Charlie and The Chocolate Factory," I wound down my window and laughed laughed laughed my law-abiding ass off at him. I've never been so impressed by a police officer's timing before! Mr. Maryland Farmer gave me a dirty look, but he's the one who just watched his insurance go up.

So, Mr. Maryland Farmer - just for the sake of clarity, I laughed at you, and I will continue to laugh at you. I don't know what police agency got that guy, but that was awesome. Great job, Johnny Law. It's not often that Karma is so swift and so accurate.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Feeding the Beast

The far-too-horny doctors on Grey's Anatomy came up with that gem of a term to describe the occasional need for sex. Sometimes, you just need to feed the beast.

In my case, my desire to own more toys than the other kids has led me to more new, wonderful purchases.

You will quickly see the quality of photos on my Flickr account and this blog go up. I just bought a Sony A100 Alpha digital SLR camera. This sucker has more buttons than a sewing shop and I'm looking forward to taking many wonderful pictures...once I find the On/Off switch.

You also might find me soon, bloodied and beaten, at Wii Have A Problem as I have gone out and bought a Nintendo Wii. First games - Madden 07 and Swing Away Golf. Should be fun, though I'm building a protective cover for my TV...just in case.

Monday, January 22, 2007

More thoughts on the NFL

While listening to the sports guy on the radio this morning, I was hit with a "duh!" moment. As in, "Duh! Why didn't I think of this last night?"

The Bears were going to win yesterday's game no matter what the zebras did, as the Bears pretty much crushed the Saints. The Saints tried, but that Bears D is tough, and they had a good offense yesterday. However, the Pats/Colts was specifically decided by the refs. Every call went towards the Colts, and I wondered why. I initially thought it was because of Peyton Manning.

Nope. When Dave Johnson at WTOP said "the first time two black coaches will meet in the Super Bowl," I knew what the story was. No way the Pats were going to win in a close game. Absolutely no way.

I know it's an important societal event that two black men are leading Super Bowl teams, especially considering how it wasn't that long ago that NFL coaching was a job only for white men.

It's just a damned shame that one earned his way in and the other should be at home watching it.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

in the words of Comic Book Guy...




I have never seen NFL referees look like NBA refs. The way the refs gave calls to the home teams in both Championship games today, it looked like Jordan taking four steps between dribbles or Shaq charging the opponent, and drawing a blocking call. Simply horrible calls all day - the Saints lost a fumble after the guy hit the ground, and replays clearly showed him down, and the Colts received more gifts from the refs than an only child on Christmas.

All members of Patriots Nation have to be beside themselves over two interference calls - one against them in which no contact was made; the other not called when the Colts' DB clearly hit the Pat's WR before the ball got there. If I was Robert Kraft, damn the fines from the league and let `em rip! It's pretty obvious that the NFL wanted their Golden Boy Peyton playing against the Number 3 market in the US, Chicago.

I pray that the Bears win the Super Bowl just so I can go an offseason without seeing 700 Peyton Manning commercials.

The NFL should be ashamed - these are the best refs they could find???? Awful, awful job.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

This Guy is Near!

I can't bloody believe it.

My new hero, Representative David Wu, D-Oregon, will be in the building today. I can't wait to meet him.

Here's where I'm torn - comedywise, I can control the A/V system to replay his famous Klingons in the White House line, and it would be the Funniest Thing Ever, but, I also want to remain employed.

Damn...I haven't been this torn since I got a free camera for an ugly friend's wedding. I love free cameras, but I had to take pictures of the ugly friend.

No winner...no win.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

from DCFUD - TdA


It was no surprise that Taberna Del Alabardero would have a delicious menu for Restaurant Week. The place is synonmous with quality and hospitality in both on both sides of the Atlantic. What I wasn't prepared for was the majesty of the place, nearly dwarfing the quality of the food.

It would be wise for all interior decorators and designers to study the Taberna, to show how a restaurant can "make and entrance" like a movie star. The small, crowded bar area was full of people waiting for their tables or content to munch on tapas. That small waiting area quickly gives way to glorious dining chambers, featuring high ceilings, bold red paint and soft lighting. Tables are spaced far enough apart to lend a sense of privacy, and the design allows for plenty of background noise that never intrudes. The walls are decorated with various paintings, a whimsical hat decoration frames the coat check closet; classic prints from the Old World, and lend to the illusion that the next two hours will be spent in the south of Spain, not two blocks from the White House.

My friends at the table remarked at the quality of the duck mixed in with their field greens. Duck can be a tricky bird to serve, as it can go from soft and flaky to overcooked and gamey with little warning, but the light salt taste and gentle texture gave good contrast to the salad. The white bean soup was complemented with pieces of quail and slab bacon, and I was tempted to order another bowl or three. The mushroom sauce topping the salmon drew raves, while the peppered flank and potatoes were seasoned perfectly. My only complaint was that I should have ordered the white and dark chocolate mousse with almond whisky sponge cake - yeah, I gained a pound just writing that. I ordered the flan, and while it was certainly acceptable, the mousse was clearly the star.

After such a fine meal, Chef Santi Zabaleta's tasting menu looks a lot like my upcoming birthday gift from myself to myself...and it's a lot more affordable than an iPhone!

Taberna Del Alabardero
1776 I Street NW
Washington DC 20006

Friday, January 12, 2007

Had to comment...WHO VOTED FOR THIS GUY!?!?!

Jeez, ladies and gentlemen, meet your new Democratic majority in the House!

We've been laughing at that guy all over the place at work. He's going to vote on the Defense Budget? Holy Hell!!!

On the bright side, we're all getting new phasers and all generals get one dude in a red shirt to stand near them at all times.


"the real Klingons in Star Trek..."

"Faux Klingons???"

DAMN - makes Senator Ted Stephens in Alaska look like a god-derned genius!

And people wonder why I'm bringing back the Whig Party.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

No Con-Fusion Here.

The International Headquarters of OBPOPCULTREF located in charming Arlington, Virginia, is covered by an ungodly amount of wall-to-wall carpeting. Two fuzzy cats and two very fuzzy dogs, plus two humans, can give the floors a new layer of shag in just a few days, so a good vacuum is vital.

Jayme, the Official Roommate of OBPOPCULTREF, brought two older vacuum cleaners to the pad, while I brought a newish, though woefully-underpowered Eureka to the vacuum bullpen. So, the two of us had three vacuums to vacuum two floors.

Couple of small problems with that concept - Jayme's vacuums were essentially busted, and my Eureka sucks about as much as a Thai hooker with lockjaw. My limited repair skills (replacing belts and bags) could not make Jayme's vacuums vacuum.

So, I drove off looking for a new rug-cleaning device. First stop - Best Buy. Why? Because I had a gift card, and anything better than a new vacuum cleaner is a cheaper new vacuum cleaner. The odd thing about Best Buy's vacuums was that every single one in stock had been returned. A husband's idea of a romantic Christmas gift for his wife gone awry 50 times over? Dishonest store employees? Everybody checking the power of the Dyson to see if it really is worth a car payment price?

Next stop was K-Mart. Why? Because I haven't been in one in years, and I figured the Sears/Kmart marriage would prove fruitful for vacuums. They had next-to-nothing in stock - apparently this was a big Christmas for vacuums. I was disappointed that all they had were light-weight plastic vacuums. I'm guessing that ever since Dyson came on board and could sell their plastic tornados for over $300 bucks, then why should other makers use metal anymore? Plastic is lighter, easier to cart around, especially on steps, and is easier to ship across the country.

Next stop - Kohl's. Why? I'm not sure. I'm in Kohl's as rarely as I'm in Kelly Monaco. Holy hell is that place expensive! At least 30% more than Best Buy across the board. I moved on.

By this point, I was glossy-eyed, delusional. I saw Wal-Mart. I fought my inner urges, since I recently found out that Jesus probably wouldn't want me to shop at Wal-Mart. I generally dislike Wal-Mart, but I was desperate.

I walked in, saw the obligatory $300 Dyson and $40 Eureka, but spotted the $100 Hoover Fusion. I hadn't seen that model in any of the other stores, but was somewhat impressed by the decent price, motor, attachments and brand. What really sold me was the Superman-style of the plastic parts. I mean, if you can't get Jaws, the old metal Kirby from Mr. Mom, go for whatever makes you laugh. And, to me, the idea of a vacuum dressed as Superman is really damned funny.

Here's the rub - the Fusion bloody hell rocks. That thing can suck up some serious dirt, dog hair and slow-moving cats. I was amazed at what it was able to absorb. I've forgotten what it was like to see a properly-powered device. Plus, it has a special powered tool that makes cleaning carpeted stairs and furniture a breeze. Not bad for 100 bucks.

Given my track record of naming inanimate objects that delight me, you know the Fusion would join my Pontiac Vibe "Raider," and my baseball bats "Excalibur" and "Whombat," my racing bike "Chieftain," my mountain bike "Ack!" and racquetball racquet "Boomstick." The Supervac has been dubbed, fairly obviously, Kal-El.

Did you ever have a dream in which you...


Contrary to the old wives' tale, you don't die in real life, but you do wake up in one hell of a cold sweat.

Falling back asleep is well-nigh impossible, too.

Time to mix in some St. John's Wort or something...