Friday, February 29, 2008

educated trout

Dolphins are pretty amazing, they're the most powerful creatures on earth! And they're dangerous. What species can drive a golf cart other than dolphins and humans? Their intelligence always has their critics, my co-worker said to me, .."at least we don't have an asshole on top of our heads..." I said your not helping.

I knew air bubble rings could be formed artificially under water, but I've never seen dolphins do it! I guess I never should of burned my bridges with the Aquarium Owners Club of America.

Separating the rings into smaller rings is cool as shit, but physically spinning it with the motion of their body is better than anything.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Horace & Dickie's





This is the place, Horace & Dickies in NE. It lives up to it's name, the best fish sandwich in town. You've heard the reviews, seen them on television, they deliver, everyday, the same way. The place is the size of a medium size bedroom, (pictured, the small white building on the left), there's only room to walk to the register and back, no tables and chairs. The rest of the space are for the cooks,..they are very nice people, they bleed Redskins burgundy and gold, and they playfully yell at you to put some money in the tip jar.

Lets get to it. It's the 4 fillet fish sandwich (they gave me 5), and it's $5. They have a loyal distributer, it's flown in everyday and delivered to them. This is the crux of their success. Piping hot, fresh, large chunks of fish, breaking off into little bricks of thick meat. And a super light dusting of breading. Mouthwatering. That's it, done, end of fish portion of review.

The collard greens were not warmed up yet so I ordered the homemade macaroni and cheese. Perfect, greasy, oily, real cheese,..with plenty of burned edges to the macaroni. Tartar sauce, hot sauce, and a ton of napkins and your out the door, passing the lines out the door. The combination of flavors between the fish, macaroni, tartar/hot sauce,..had me laughing and mumbling to myself. This sandwich rendered all my previous fish sandwich experiences completely irrelevant. This is the Rolls Royce of fish sandwiches.

Oh, and I had also heard their fried chicken is "the best in the Washington DC, Maryland, Virginia area." -Mayor Adrian Fenty
Minutes from Eastern Market and Union Station.
,$$$$$
,15 min lunch wait
809 12th St. NE
Washington D.C.

202.397.6040

Friday, February 22, 2008

F1 Season '08


formula1.com 2008 Schedule
Speed Channel F1
broadcast schedule
m 2007 Driver Standings


Cyclone - Marilyn Minter, photograph c-print 2006


Tan Tan Bo Puking - a.k.a Gero Tan, Takashi Murakami 2002


Highland Park - photograph, Charlie White 1999


Big Self-Portrait - acrylic on canvas, Chuck Close 1967-68

Wednesday, February 20, 2008


Andy Irons, Bells Beach, Victoria, Australia

I miss the old Gwen

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

president's day



Yesterday was President's Day, I had the day off so I decided to grab my favorite Mediterranean take-out and Palahniuk's Haunted, which I started last year,..
and plop my ass on the grass on the National Mall. I've been down there a 100 times to just kick it and people watch, but this time was a little different, I was feelin good!,.. It was a late February day and it was 70 degrees?!,..although in the shade, there was still alittle bite.

It wasn't July, 95 degrees and sticky, and there were none of the tourists from Kentucky, or the midwest,..in groups of ten. Not that that's a bad thing, but today was a day for two people,....locals and wonderful foreign tourists. Europeans wearing winter clothes, and what's cooler than europeans wearing winter clothes? And us locals because it's 70 degrees and it's February!

a beautiful 70'ish year old woman with platinum hair, engrossed in a novel, on a big blanket with a basket, four hardbacks, and beside her sniffing the air, a very content Corgi.

Four british teens wishing their friend from Leeds were here with them. I think she said Leeds.

The most handsome couple practicing, with precision, for what seemed to be an upcoming flag football game.

A full rugby team, gearing up for something, with all equipment, uni's, gear, fans. Colorful cleats, cool, typical striped jerseys, they looked like a real european team all the way.

Two japanese girls flying a kite.

Five GW students throwing and catching a football and loving the fact that they couldn't throw or catch a football.

A beautiful young german couple and their young daughter taking a picture for an american couple and their new puppy.

About 10 Czechlosovakian teens, I could tell by the flags,.. running somewhere, laughing and yelling, their guides were directing them.

And what's better than watching foreign tourists devouring an american hot dog, and they always have trouble with it,.. they always put too much stuff on it, napkins end up really being of no use, but their having a small, great life experience. You can see it in their faces.

To the right was the Capitol building, and to my left was the Giant Pencil. The air was cool and there were brief whiffs of grassy moss. I didn't really want to leave but I thought someone could really appreciate my parking spot, and besides my pets at home were probably very hungry.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Mark Ryden





In my opinion Mark Ryden is an american artist that has no equal. He stands alone in vision and content. Since his debut exhibit "The Meat Show" in california in 1998, there's been many artist that have cropped up producing work that look suspiciously similar to Rydens. Knock-offs. They've just replaced Rydens iconic constances,... meat, numbers, catholicism, grotesque fictional animals and little girls and boys, with their own symbols seemingly pulled out of a hat,.. with no rich dualities and simple horrors that are a constant in Rydens work.

His 2007 debut of his exhibit "The Tree Show" was as I remember, accepted as masterpiece. I read The Los Angeles Museum Of Modern Art purchased a Ryden piece for 800k before they had seen any of the new exhibit. Quoi? They can and do anything they want in LA that's why the LA art scene is the LA art scene I guess. "The wonder that is a constant in the content of his newer "Tree Show" pieces, was possibly upstaged by his vastly improved technical skills." -BLENDER. His work was thought to have been much improved technically, and he was noticed then by galleries from New York to Europe.

There are tiny swirls of horror, innocence, and disturbing curiosities in every corner of his pieces. His web site MarkRyden.com (I urge you to visit) has a partial collection of his works but you can find much more by just surfing the www. Everyone writes about him, he's talked about in pop-culture circles daily, and there are a million blog posts about Mark Ryden, mine is just one of a million more to come.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Elevation Burger



Have a "Higher Burger" at Elevation Burger in Falls Church. The meat is 100% organic, grass-fed free range Virginia Kobe beef. It tastes alittle more like steak, a bit firm but very lean, there is little to none of the fatty juice. The burger at first looks small, wrapped in the paper pocket, but they pack it tight so it expands in size when out of it. They will also stack as many patties as you ask,..I saw a picture of a ten patty burger on-line! All the veggies are crisp and new. A really good simple tasting burger. They cook to order so there's a small wait.

The french fries are cooked in olive oil, and you can definitely taste it, which is a nice touch, and healthier,.. a few of them were soggy but no big deal, their shakes are a favorite so I tried the chocolate. They are thick, and they are thick. Served to you with a fat straw and a tall spoon. It takes a while and a little work to get that first bit of it to the top of the straw and into your mouth. And did i mention it's pretty much the best shake I've ever had?

They have veggie burgers on their small menu, and they also have what's called a "1/2 The Guilt Burger" which is one veggie patty and beef patty. That's hilarious and nutritous. If your into the protein thing they'll also wrap your burger entirely in lettuce instead of the bun.

Anyway, the place makes sense, it's almost Zen in it's simplicity to serve you a burger. A fresh tasting burger is all it is. It was packed for lunch. For me the best burger experience I've had so far in this town. It sucks I live so far away or else I'd be here a few times a week.
,$$$$$
,10 min lunch wait
442 S. Washington St.
Falls Church Va
703.237.4343

Friday, February 15, 2008

LEO



This is my cat Leo, I adopted him from an adoption agency at 4 months, and on the way home, he slept the whole way. I had him in a carrier that was way too small for a cat his size, but he didn't care, he was pooped. You would think,... a cat,..going to a place where he actually doesn't know what from where,..it's eyes are darting, nervous,.. there was none of that, he was crashed, and whatever I was doing or wherever I was going, whoever I was, he knew when he woke up, he would deal with it.

He eats when he wants to, he sleeps wherever he wants, he walks around like he's king shit,.. but he never disrespects my older, larger cat Katie.

And he never leaves my side. He looks directly into my eyes for long peroids of time. Every morning when the sun comes up, he makes it a point to quietly position his face an inch from mine, then proceeds to lick my head, until I'm up. Like clockwork. I don't mind that he ruins my sleep. He's fiercly loyal and intelligent. And he always walks along beside me.

gratuitous FARGO dialogue

                        CARL
... Look at that. Twin Cities.
IDS Building, the big glass one.
Tallest skyscraper in the Midwest.
After the Sears, uh, Chicago...
You never been to Minneapolis?

GRIMSRUD
No.

CARL
... Would it kill you to say
something?

GRIMSRUD
I did.

CARL
"No." First thing you've said
in the last four hours. That's
a, that's a fountain of conversation,
man. That's a geyser. I mean, whoa,
daddy, stand back, man. Shit, I'm
sittin' here driving, man, doin'
all the driving, whole fuckin' way
from Brainerd, drivin', tryin' to,
you know, tryin' to chat, keep
our spirits up, fight the boredom
of the road, and you can't say one
fucking thing just in the way of
conversation.

Grimsurd smokes, gazing out the window.

CARL
... Well, fuck it, I don't have
to talk either, man. See how
you like it...

He drives.

CARL
... Total silence...

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Congratulations UNO!



Making history at the 132nd Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show this year is the UNO! His birth name is Ch. K-Run's Park Me In First. He's also the first of his breed to win Best In Show in 131 years. A BEAGLE has never won?! He grabbed a huge standing ovation. And he is handsome! Every year I love watching this show, what's better than watching the best dog show there is broadcast from Madison Square Garden. It's comfort, I always like to get a big bowl of popcorn and sink into the couch.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Eco-Shape





I drink mostly Disanti water but this Deer Park brand Eco-Shape bottle uses 30% less plastic. So I switched for a couple of cases, and I found with the least effort of any other bottled water out there, they can be collapsed into a tiny space leaving a lot more room in your recycle bag.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Chinatown Express



Pedestrian in name, but not in food. It's Chinatown Express. Whenever I'm down D.C. and I'm in Chinatown, I make my way here to eat. It's quick and it's cheap, The food has an authentic, uniquely regional taste,..it's upscale flavor for bargain basement prices. For this reason, eating there is somewhat of a chore,.. it's busy. Most of the time it's elbow to elbow, the waitresses can be rude, and you can hear the conversations of everyone in the place. But it's all a good time and good eats.

Their noodles are their specialty, they make them on the spot, there's a tiny open side kitchen at the entrance where it's prepared, along with the duck chefs. It's a well known hang out for the Verizon center staffers, and on game day if you don't have press credentials around your neck, you feel out of place.

The chopsticks are a foot and a half long, the tea pot looks like a relic, but as soon as your seated and you start on the menu, you can't help but to pause, look around and feel the pleasant cultural experience of it all.

Pictured is the fresh seafood noodle soup I ordered for $6.
,$$$$$
,15 min lunch wait
746 6th St. NW
Washington DC
202.638.0425

some mad grass







i don't know much about orchids but other than kate beckinsale, i think they're one of the most intriguing things we have here on Nebulas 4. this annual driveway weed spectacle is going on down at the U.S. Botanical Garden Conservatory in Washington DC. and what do i do? i show up there with my 7 mega pixel toy, it looked like a digtal SLR convention was going on at the same time, i have never seen cameras like i saw today, these guys were serious.

i thought i would check it out, a friend had said besides Tokyo, the U.S. show here at the gardens were pretty comparable. oh, and whatever the germans are doing. not only are the gardens spectacular, the surrounding exhibits were too, this place has an absolutely different feel than the other concrete museums in the city, very calming. it's huge, and it's about 95 degrees and humid inside. about every 15 minutes, a wash of mist floats down from the 50 foot glassed ceiling so bring your shower cap.

anyway, there are unbelievably strange types of the orchid, all over, you won't believe their intricacies, so get your ass down there and check out these weeds. thru april 13.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Vinh Loi



There are many Vietnamese noodle houses and I've been to alot of them. This one to me stands out. It's the broth.

The obvious blunder made by many is first, the unecessary pile of flank and brisket meat in the soup, little is best,.. after adding the vegetables and lime, there is an array of other flavors present to enjoy. Next is the fat content in the broth, better ingredients and care should reduce the said amount. You know immediately what went into the preperation when the soup is placed in front of you and you see the murky, fat-laden broth.

There is none of that at Vinh Loi in Falls Church. I spoke with the owner and she pledged to me MSG has no place in her style of cooking. Just a tiny bit of Vietnamese brand sea salt. The result is obvious,... light, clear, flavorful, and delicious. The use of the word "homemade" in recipes can, and is, thrown around generously, but her broth is so stripped of peripheral flavors,.. when she says it, I believe her.

What I don't see is a noodle cook in the streets of Saigon, making a quick soup for lunch, taking a break from serving passers-by from a make shift table, then adding any other ingredients other than what she picked up at the market that morning. Fresh and simple. It comes through here.

Vinh Loi is tucked away in a busy retail area near Bailey's Crossroads, and if it wasn't, there would of been more than the five people in front of me this morning waiting for the doors to open at 10:30am.
,$$$$$
,5 min lunch wait
5811 Leesburg Pike
Falls Church Va
703.379.0988

Friday, February 8, 2008

Martin Ramirez



Martin Ramirez, pictured right, is an artist that has moved me through his work and his life. I first saw his art in San Francisco, where in certain groups and even sub-culture circles, his work is beloved. I recently came across an article on his exhibits in Chicago, I looked around and found this segment from CBS Sunday Morning. I think his work is a wonder. Under any circumstances, true artists must create.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

laughing out loud



When I watched the NY Giants celebrating like crazed champions on the sidelines after an assured victory in this years Super Bowl, Michael Strahan put on his victory cap,.. you know the ones that say "Champions" or whatever, and I took a pause and thought.... THEY ACTUALLY MADE THOSE?! ones that say "GIANTS Superbowl XLII Champions"?! really?

Who made those? Are they real? or are they the ones from their last Super Bowl win,... "the Norwood". Who's bright idea was that to go into the marketing meeting and propose they probably should start thinking about the design of the championship shirts and hats. Who thought the Giants would win?! Only the gerbil that lives inside Eli Mannings head.

But what about the NE Patriots victory stuff! Holy shit, they probably went so far as to construct 20,000 limited edition Patriots 19-0 Superbowl XLII Championship bicycles. 50,000 cans of limited edition Patriots 19-0 Superbowl XLII Championship soup.

A million articles of shiny, glittery, fancy, awesomely designed T's, hats, scarves, 19-0 this and 19-0 that! Perfect this,... I heard mom and pop sporting retailers in the area will lose like an average of $8,000 in revenue within the next month. I never would of guessed the 2007 NE Patriots squad would be responsible for the recession. All theses goods going to waste and hitting the recyclers. But not really. Huh?

I read today that 90% of it will go specifically to Nicaragua. The charity organizer said it will probably be the first new article of clothing they have ever had in their lives. That's pretty cool but I would love to own this stuff! I mean, if the Pats won, credit to where credit is due, In my mind they would be the best of all time,.. but they didn't and I'm a Cowboys fan and a poor sport so...I would wear these things till they were thread-bare.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

E.E. Cummings

i like my body when it is with your

i like my body when it is with your
body. It is so quite a new thing.
Muscles better and nerves more.
i like your body. i like what it does,
i like its hows. i like to feel the spine
of your body and its bones, and the trembling
-firm-smooth ness and which i will
again and again and again
kiss, i like kissing this and that of you,
i like,, slowly stroking the, shocking fuzz
of your electric fur, and what-is-it comes
over parting flesh . . . . And eyes big Love-crumbs,

and possibly i like the thrill

of under me you quite so new


if you're ever in Hagerstown Maryland....



...and you're hungry for a sub?, check out Hartles Subs, often prepared by numerous, friendly, 70+ yr olds. fresh ingredients, freshly baked bread, they pile on the veggies,.. (pictured,..i asked for less veggies) a tasty homemade vinaigrette, and a secret homemade mild pepper spread that you'll drive 2 hours for.
,
$$$$$
,
10 min lunch wait
1301 Marshall St
Hagerstown Md 21740
301.739.5483

my 7 questions on heaven and hell

1. will there be steamed crabs in heaven? if not let me know now.

2. in hell is there going to be an actual "lake of fire"? and if so, will the lake be made entirely of flames? or will there be really hot water with the flames on top or along the banks.

3. can god at any time, forgive someone from hell and then bring him into the kingdom of heaven?

4. can we see hell from heaven?

5. how will we be able to make intricate decisions and express complex feelings in the after-life without an actual working brain? wait, we have that now and most of us can't do those things, nix that.

6. in hell, is there an actual, physical devil? and is he right now in Iraq?

7. in heaven, how can i enjoy the feeling of eternal salvation if i knew a relative or friend was elsewhere and burning. and when those feelings come up, will we have the option of expressing "remind me later".

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

It's Amazing.


click image for full size.

A.I.

video

This is Warner Bros. 2001 trailer for the film A.I., to me, still holds up today, great John Williams score, one of the better trailers of the day,..showed promise of something that could of been groundbreaking...

Kubrick, collaborator, died before shooting began. Spielberg went on to write, produce, and direct. At the early stages, Kubricks screenplay had many many more layers to the storyline even incorporating elements from Pinocchio. Juicy. The end product for me was a disappointment, and after important screenings , and as we know now, the industry didn't generate much interest either. Larger hi-res.

Monday, February 4, 2008

SPIROGRAPH!





I was just surfing the internets and I came across SPIROGRAPH! If your near the same age as me, you will remember SPIROGRAPH! A great time-waster, in the 70's it was a refreshing break from
playing with sticks and flashlights outside. Oh and the occasional discovery of pornography in the woods. In the 70's, if your were a kid and at some point you didn't inadvertently find porn in the woods? , you were..pretty unlucky.

Anyway, SPIROGRAPH! made cool patterns and designs for about 7 minutes. About how long it took for the expression of mild amusement on your face to change to a half frown, why? because it was the 70's! Pen technology was at it's infancy and at any given moment, when the direction of the SPIROGRAPH! wheel would change, the chances of ink build up on the ball of the pen being released onto the paper was about 100%. Basically creating horrible spots along the hairline pattern. It looked like shit.

There are some online interactive SPIROGRAPHS! but it's not the same and it doesn't look like anything good.

The Office Pool



1st Q: NY 3, NE 0 2nd Q: NY 3, NE 7 3rd Q: NY 3, NE 7, 4th Q: NY 7, NE 4

Super Bowl XLII final score: NY Giants 17 - NE Patriots 14.

That's me winning $125 for the final quarter, that means I'll have enough money to keep this blog operational for 3 more weeks.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Just a hunch

My boss received this e-mail on Fri.....
http://www.votechooser.com/

from a friend, and then forwarded it to me and my co-worker, it was a typical poll,..this one having to do with 10 questions that determines the commonality between you and the current (or not so current, now) presidential candidate.

I'll cut to the chase,......as a result of our answers, all 4 of us had Barack Obama as the "candidate we should vote for". To some this could be just what it is, a poll, but send out a million of these e-mails and if 80 % of the pollsters have the same result, would it be something useful to your candidate? Would it be something that is definitely not useful to another? Just sayin.

I've shown my colors, I would have to admit, I would not be posting this if I was to agree with Barack Obama and his ideals.

CONSPIRACY ALERT: Obamas thumbnail pic has his head 50 % larger than the other candidates, and the banner ad has him first.
4 out of 4?

FIVE GUYS laughing



My FIVE GUYS meal today, the standard cheeseburger combo. That's diet soda in the cup so anyone who says that I'm not trying looks like a real idiot right now. Also I'm almost certain the last time I got this combo meal I paid $7 dollars.

When the hell did it get to $9? The cashier was laughing as I handed her my 10 spot. And they didn't put the mushrooms on it like I ordered.

the first catch of the day


My apartment, 3:17pm, living room, outside: over-cast to partly sunny, Tabby/Coon mix, named: Leo.

..look, there's that guy..



I'm a cat lover, and I'm a hetero male, I love dogs too, big time. But once you utter those words..."I'm a cat lover" and your a single male,......I don't care if your a captain in the Yakuza, your finished, banished, the looks, the sneers, then comes the whispering, and then the rock throwing. There is a quote from the late Heath Ledger to Jake Gyllenhaal from the film Brokeback Mountain:

"....bottom line is, if were around each other and this thing grabs a hold of us again, at the wrong place, at the wrong time,....were dead..."

Few people know that that quote directly has to do with the subject of the urge to own cats.

And then there is the other side of the coin for the cat lover - all cat lovers,...we buy worthless crap. Anything with anything that has to do with the subject. But heres something I found that I might get a little mileage out of because the lady's find it adorable. Cat Butts Magnets, and of course the handy Field Guide, containing helpful hints on spotting cats butts and visually documenting them.

excerpts from the Field Guide:

...Siberians are not only rare, but they are able to leap great distances. So getting a good "read" on their butt may be difficult. A common Siberian anus, when found, tends to be flying through the air.

...it is not recommended to touch a Siamese on the anus directly...


...to make a positive identification of a Himalayan, you will need to push the fur aside to have a look-see....


chuck the magnets, keep the Field Guide?
Online or at Borders Books $7

Drive-Thru Movie Reviews


There Will Be Blood - Director: Paul Thomas Anderson
There Will Be Blood?...There Will Be Oscar! Brilliant,.. go see it. Take Daniel Day Lewis' hypnotic performance in Gangs Of New York and transplant it in this thing. Minus that get-up.
8 out of 10 jesus tortillas.

Juno - Director: Jason Reitman
Did juno this movie is pretty good?,.. go see it.
7 out of 10 jesus tortillas.

Sweeney Todd- The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street - Director: Tim Burton
Looks great,..but the music? ugh.
5 out of 10 jesus tortillas.

Well here we go...



This is my cat Katie. My veterinarian's summation of her health at her most recent check-up was and I quote,..."she's overweight".