Monthly Archives: July 2011

Recipe time!

I mean, who doesn’t like saving money? (Carlos Slim Helú, this is where you raise your hand*). There are any number of off-brand products available at ye local Super-est of Markets that are, essentially, the same damn thing as the name-brand crap. Can anyone really tell the difference between “Q-Tips” and “Cotton Swabs”? I’m not talking about homemade, 100% organic, spun-from-the-fleece-of-our-pet-sheep-Larry-and-then-sold-on-Etsy shit, I mean Wal-Mart brand Q-Tips.

No, you cannot, because they’re the same damn thing.

This goes for most products, in my opinion, but in my years as a Bargain Shopper I’ve come across one glaring exception. One thing that, no matter how many times I try to convince myself otherwise, is just not the same.

Off-brand Cheerios.

great value my ass.

Oh, excuse me, I mean “Great Value Toasted Whole Grain Oat Cereal.”

Whatever. Either way, it sucks. It tastes… stale. And… old. And kind of… I don’t know… dusty, I think. And I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to pour myself a big ol’ bowl of Stale Old Dusty-Ohs in the morning.

I’ve experienced the Sawdusties multiple times, and yet, I wait a few years – hoping they’ve since honed the recipe – and buy again. My latest endeavor was a few months ago, and the box is still sitting in my kitchen because guess what? It still tastes bad. 

Because, despite it’s ickiness, I can’t bring myself to toss out the rest of the box (I did manage to force-fed myself a few bowls, some with raisins, some with fruit, some with other toppings to mask the taste but to no avail). And, based on my sporadic food-pantry volunteering, I know that donations of Half-Eaten Shit are Frowned Upon. So what to do?

Find a way to cover them with peanut butter and sugar, of course.

Today’s recipe: Cheerio Bars!

Gather ye some:
1 cup sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
1 cup peanut butter
6 cups Cheerios (or nasty substitute)

Then you’ll:
Bring sugar and corn syrup to a boil. In a saucepan. Did I have to mention you put it in a saucepan first? And put it on the stove?
Spread the WELL MIXED MIXTURE into a greased 9 x 13 pan. Make sure it’s pressed all evenly up in thurr. No one wants to be the schmuck that ends up with the half-inch corner square while Johnny gets to mow down on some six-inch monstrosity (ba-dum-ching).
Cool it. The pan, that is.
Then cut into squares. And serve.
And. Be. Delighted (James Lipton voice).

*Carlos Slim Helú, why are you reading my blog?

Oh, that’s nice.

I cannot possibly be the only dirty-minded baseball fan who watched today’s Pirates vs. Cardinals game and wondered why the grounds crew at PNC Park decided it was a good idea to mow a giant vagina into center field:

This is why the world is probably a better place without me writing “about baseball.”

And yet, I can’t think of a more awesome way I could spend my time.

Baseball, that great intersection of culture and sport and history of our great nation. Baseball, about which I could read all day, every day, and THERE WOULD ALWAYS BE MORE TO READ. Yeah, yeah, I know all professional sports are like that, in the age of the espns and the foxs and the outdoor life networks. But no one says something is as American as apple pie and Ultimate Fighting.*  No, siree – it’s baseball, friends, that so perfectly epitomizes everything that’s awesome and weird and wonderful and messed up about the United States of ‘Mer’ca.

It’s a goldmine of topics about which I could write endlessly, but for now, I’m content to just permanently scar your brain with my opening image. You. Are. Welcome.


What the heck, Trash Can?

What the heck, Trash Can?
I just bought a ninety-dozen pack of Tall Kitchen Bags and guess what? THEY DON’T FIT. You are a tall kitchen trash can, are you not? What gives?

The last batch of Tall Kitchen Bags was iffy, I know. Ironic, considering they were “Awesome!” brand (emphasis mine, though I am certain that more brand names need exclamation points). But no, seriously: I finished up that box and schlepped on over to the Target – I WENT TO TARGET FOR YOU WHEN I COULD HAVE JUST AS EASILY WENT TO WAL-MART – and picked out a fucking crate’s worth of Tall Kitchen Bags.

Don't give me that look, motherfucker.

Not just any TKBs, mind you: these had Odor Guard and Drawstrings and Stretchability-ness and possibly glowed in the dark. In short: this was some Grade A Prime shit, even if they were Target brand.

But nope. Not good enough for you, eh? I can barely fit these new fuckers around you and do they even reach the bottom? Nope. Not at all. But it’s ok, I’ll just gingerly place each individual piece of trash in the bag from now on. No sweat. I don’t mind at all.

Except I fucking WILL mind, especially next time I’m pitching the remains of what began as a perfectly good meal until I got a little heavy-handed with the onion powder or the jalapenos or the sherry and it turned to crap and I have to throw it in the trash because Mr. Garbage Disposal is such a fucking diva – all finicky and dainty and makes horrific screeching noises when it is displeased with me, which is always.

So what gives, Trash Can? Are you actually a Tall Garage Trash Can instead, masquerading in your white plastic-ness so that unsuspecting schmoes like me will blindly place you in their shopping cart, thus freeing you from the tyranny of the K-Mart?

Or did you, like, grow or something? Because we’ve been together a few years, dude, and I seriously can’t remember having this issue before.

Fine. Whatever it is I did to upset you, I’m sorry. Just – everything. Everything I’ve ever done. I’m now officially sorry. Here is my apology. To you. So can we just move on? Will you just go back to accepting my trash bags and we can forget this whole thing happened?

What do you mean it doesn’t work like that? That I should “know” what I’m apologizing for? Are you serious? Are you going to pull that crap with me? Now? Right here? Jesus, this is just like you. Let’s make a fucking scene in front of the whole goddamn internet. “Oh, look at me, I’m the victim here, Julie doesn’t care about my feelings, it’s all about her, blah blah blah waaaaaaaaah!”

Know what, a-hole? It is all about me. I own you. You see that pile of broken furniture laying next to the Dumpster outside? DO YOU WANT TO BE IN THAT PILE? Do you? Do you?

Then I suggest you shut your smart mouth.

But first tell me where to buy trash bags for you.



Julie goes to Warshington, parto uno

I’m visiting Baby Brudder next month. I am eessited.

My general understanding of the geography of the East Coast

Brother: So what do you want to see while you’re here?

Julie: I watched a show about people with a cupcake shop. It was in Georgetown. Are you near Georgetown?

B: Yeah, not too far. I’m also close to the White House, or other historical things and (blah blah blah, I started to tune him out)

J: But the cupcake shop. You know it?

B: Um, maybe? I don’t know. I guess I could look it up.

J: I must go there.

B: Oh, ok. Well, sure. We could also blah blah blah blahblahblahblahblah history history history history

J: I want to go to the ocean, too. Are you near the ocean?

B: Um, well, no, but I guess we could maybe go to Delaware for a day… it only takes blah blah blah blah blah blah


B: Um, ok. Well, we blah blah blah blah blah


B: Nah, no. Not really. I guess if you really wanted to you could blah blah blah blah


B: I… I… Well…


B: *hangs up phone*


Sometimes in the morning, after my fiftieth-or-so cup of coffee, I get GREAT BIG IDEAS that MUST BE DONE NOW.

This sometimes also happens after my fifth-or-so tequila & Sprite, but I often lack the follow-through at these times:

Julie: Hey! Ohmygosh we should totally go skydiving. TOMORROW.*

Friend: Hey! Fuck yeah, skydiving!

J: I will sooooooooooooooo  call you tomorrow morning! Shit yeah, we gon’ DO THIS.

*Friend and Julie exchange high fives*

INT: The Next Day. Julie is passed-the-fuck-out on an unfamiliar futon. She awakes.

J: Fuck that shit. Also, where am I?

Ahem. Anyway, the motivation to carry out these grand schemes comes much easier with caffeine. Case in point: I went and got myself a website this morning. Like, one for which I’ve paid. To be more precise, it’s a domain name. And no, I have no idea what I’m doing just yet.

I imagine the new site will be something like this, but with much more awesome.

The first step in my reorganization is to separate my Song of the Day from the rest of my idiotic ranting- it’s more for the sake of continuity than anything else.  I considered removing all previous SOTD posts from Current Site and transferring them to New Site but the caffeine had long worn off by then.

Suffice to say that this particular site will continue to be a hot mess until I figure out what the hay-ell I’m doing. But do stay tuned, for I anticipate it taking only a few short years to re-create the monstrosity that I’m picturing in my brain.




*This conversation kind of happened, like in Real Life.

sotd 7.18.11: Good Life

“Imma get on the TV, Mama!”
Also, this video is neat-o.

“Good Life” / Kanye ft. T-Pain (2007)

The first time ever I…

Forget you, Mr. Ewan MacColl, for writing this song. Your syntax sucks, but is unfortunately catchy – so catchy, that the phrase pops up in my brain at least once a week. But really? A person begins a sentence by saying “the first time ever I” anything and they automatically sound like Radar O’Reilly after too many Grape NeHis.

And yet, I sometimes grow misty-eyed and sentimental about Important Moments in my life and the only phrase asinine enough to describe them usually begins the first time ever I… and then the rest of the thought is doomed to sound something like this:

The first time ever I drank coffee – intentionally, and without abandon: It was Denny’s, late summer, 2004.

It was a group breakfast: a buncha new coworkers and supervisors gathering around dirty plates of hams and eggs. I’m feeling equal parts excitement and dread: six of these people will be “my” “staff.”

What? I have a staff? Server, a Malibu and Coke, please!

Server: Hahahahahaha.

Me: No Malibu? Ronrico’ll do. Or Senor Dreadloxx or whatever other shit you have gathering dust under the bar.

Server, laughing slower and with less certainty: Ha…haha…
This is… a…Denny’s.

Me, looking around: Right. Yup.

Server, confused: …with no, you know, liquor license?

Me, shocked as hell: Oh yeah? Huh.

Server, amazed: I can get you some… Dr. Pepper? Orange Juice? Coffee?

Me: Coffee! Yes, coffee! I’ll take some coffee! That sounds good!

Server, backing away slowly: Ohhh…kaaaaaay…

I proceed to chain-drink mug after mug of coffee, until I’m shaking like a junkie and talking forty-five-kilometres per hour. Surely this initial impression on those whom I would be supervising was im-fucking-peccable.

You* hear stories about people who try heroin once and they’re immediately, indeliably, hooked? Yeah. I drank coffee every morning after that.

No, really – every morning since August 2004. I’ve skipped a few mornings when I didn’t feel so hot (that’s how I know I’m sick, by the way – if I can’t even drink coffee) or coffee just wasn’t available, and some days it’s just a few quick sips before I gotta scoot, but I’m coming up on my Seven Year anniversary of Slowly Damaging My Insides And Probably Self-Inducing A Slow Growing Form Of Cancer.


*Or, say, a friend-of-a-friend hears this story and some fucked up part of his brain decides that’s why he wants to try it and Fast Forward five or six years and he’s a shriveled-up douchebag who nobody even likes enough to stage an intervention. That’s the real story, kids.

sotd 7.15.11

Sometimes I pull the title of one of my posts from seemingly thin air. Yesterday I talked about dranky-dranks, and called it “Snap Ya Fingers.” This is why.

“Buy U a Drank (Shawty Snappin’)” / T-Pain ft. Yung Joc (2007)

Snap ya fingers.

My brother drinks sidecars, a college taste he developed going to an establishment technically called a “martini lounge” but which was probably just a bar.

He ordered one once, in my presence, as we ate at a chain restaurant with a long history of disappointing me. The server was confused by the request, but then reassured us that “the bartender probably knows what you’re talking about.” She returned, triumphant, and informed us that there was indeed a “button” on the restaurant’s POS* for said drink.

A sidecar is made with cognac, triple sec and lemon juice and is served in a martini glass. Pictures I found online were garnished with an orange slice, but his Chain Restaurant drink remained fruit-free.

I tried a sip of this concoction and was amazed that a guy who drinks Everclear would also be so enamored with such a sweet libation. Never a fan of the stereotypical “chick” drinks, I prefer mine to have a bit of a burn going down. It’s harder to go overboard when you got to take it slow is my reasoning, I guess. Also, I just like bourbon.

I’m sure there are gazillions of serious psychological profiles or humorous articles about what a person’s drink of choice says about them, but this isn’t either. It’s just an observation of a phenomenon that, at the time, I found to be curious (then I realized how much a really good bottle of Grand Marnier costs and I about spit up). There we were, my brother with his sippy-drink** and me with, probably, a beer.

This Bud’s for you, brother.



*for the uninitiated, this stands for ‘point of sale’ system, but the other definition is funny too.
** sippy-drinks are those that are difficult to drink quickly. this is a term I made up. Do not feel bad if you’ve not heard it, and feel free to propagate its use.

sotd 7.14.11

So I don’t always catch on when a song first becomes popular, and instead figure out it exists months, years or even decades later. Guess this is one of those.

“Starlight” / Muse (2006)