I’m not expecting to grow flowers in the desert

Today I rode Bear Creek with my friend Javier. We met at Morgan Stanley. We went through the Series 7 and sale training together. He’s over at Oppenheimer now and I’m one of the Undead. Bear Creek is an 18 mile course that has three ridiculous hills at the end… the three bears. Back in the 1970’s this course was used by the Olympic team for time trials. They had to do three laps. Last time we did this I couldn’t get the last two hills without a break. This time I got it but I’m pretty sure I will be unable to move tomorrow morning. If I could solve the problem where my arms go to sleep I’d be the happiest little cyclist, powerlifter, dog whisperer in the world. But I can’t so I just hope and pray when we’re going 35mph on the downhill that my numb fingers will remember where the brakes are if I need them. There’s another broker that we knew from Morgan Stanley that he still works with. He cycles too. Ron told Javier not to flutter his brakes. His reasoning: they ain’t no difference in crashing at 28mph or 35mph so enjoy the ride. Wheeee! Afterwards we stopped at Peet’s in Orinda. Yesterday I hit Peet’s in Clayton. Any weekend with two trips to Peet’s is a great weekend. We sat there had a cuppa and talked bicycles. I miss working with Javier, he’s one of the smartest people I know. Here’s a little talked about secret. The Series 7 has a 70 percent pass rate. Of the 70 percent most of the brokers score very close to 70%. Not the Wine Dog, I got a 92 on that bad boy. Yeah, smoked it. I’d be ridiculously proud of that, but Javier got a 96. And he speaks like five languages.

Photojournalism

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What’s great about this picture is what you don’t see. Noticeably absent are RITA’S RIBS. She still has ribs, they’re just properly covered by body fat. You can still see the last two, as you can with Beauregard, who thinks she smells funny.

When I got home from the ride, I didn’t have time for my post Bear Creek nap so I went to Yardbirds got some more compost and higher quality soil and finished the vegetable beds.

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While some of you have asked about the two graves in my back yard, (contrary to popular belief that is not the hole I dug for my career) they’re actually planters and they now have broccoli and tomato plants in them. Seeds that were planted include just about every kind of hot pepper under the sun, four kinds of squash, cantaloupe, watermelon, lettuce and cauliflower. The big mystery will be to see what makes it. I’d like it all to make it but I realize that’s really shooting pretty high. I sure hope the scotch bonnets make it.

Now, I spend a lot of time pontificating about real estate investing and making business decisions and not using emotion and all of that. I’m pretty good about it myself. However, the actual decision to offer on this house had nothing to do with anything except this rose bush.

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I know, I’m a jackass.

Somewhere between raising Hell and amazing grace

This is Crossfit’s workout for yesterday

Back squat, 1 rep
Shoulder Press, 1 rep
Deadlift, 1 rep

I didn’t do that. I did this:

  • Deadlift till knees 115 (4X1) 135 (4X2) 160 (3X2) 175 (3X4)
  • Bench press 115 (5X1) 135 (5X1) 160 (4X2) 175 (3X2) 185 (2×2) 175 (3×2) 160 (5×2) 135 (7×1) 115 (9×1)
  • Flat dumbbells “flies”10×5.
    Deadlift 115 (4×1) 135 (4×1) 160 (3×2) 185 (3×5)
  • Leg Curl 10X5

Usually I do kettlebell swings with that workout, but I forgot yesterday morning. I was hustling to get through my workout, shower, etc. and out to an open house I was doing for a friend. It’s amazing how you can get somewhere on time where you care to and can’t get to other places when you don’t care.

Today, I’ve got a four mile dog walk. I’m trying to decide if they both go or not. Rita has just started playing with toys. That’s not something she did when she got here. She didn’t play with toys or things she wasn’t supposed to, with the noted exception of the bicycle pump. She hasn’t done too much destruction, but she did get the dog brush yesterday, I caught her and saved it. I think compared to the amount of destruction Xica did, I’m in great shape. Xica, got into my desk drawers once and had a field day. She was relegated to the bathroom while I was at work. She ate all of the moulding off of the walls in there and finally one day chewed through the pressure hose on the toilet. She flooded my place and my landlord’s place, as he lived downstairs. This was before cell phones so I had a couple of frantic calls from him ending with, I need to go into your place. I got the first and second message and had left the office and headed home. Upon my arrival I found my landlord standing in four inches of water and Xica soaked standing there next to him wagging her tail, thrilled that I was home early and water shooting out of the pressure hose and running down the wall. He made me get all wet and turn it off. I can’t remember who rebuilt that bathroom, it was before I started doing that sort of work myself, possibly The Brother, he’ll remember for sure. The landlord was actually pissed that I did such a good job and he had to give me back my deposit.

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That picture was probably taken in 1992 at the Marin Humane Society’s Canine Games. Xica owned the tennis ball toss. The purpose was to have your dog catch the tennis ball when you threw it to them. Xica never missed a tennis ball thrown to her. Ever. She was part Border Collie, part Pit Bull and part Mastiff. Her tenacity was unmatched. I’ve got a good throwing arm so I could almost always throw her a perfect strike. We never missed because of her, always me. The longest distance we had to do was the width of the Humane Society’s barn. Xica and I always practiced with the length of the barn, just to mess with the competition. We won all but one year. She was a great frisbee dog until she blew out her ACL. Put a pit bull brain in a border collie body and you get one screaming intense little dog.

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She was all about throw the ball throw the ball throw the ball, like a border collie, but in her case, that message was followed up with throw the goddamned ball. She was one intense little dog. Before she blew out her ACL she was a rock hard 80 pounds of dog muscle. She scared the crap out of passers by. Then she blew out her knee and I took 10 pounds off of her. She was still scary looking to strangers, just not as big. When she passed away, she was 60 pounds, but she was also more than 15 years old. It’s been three years and I miss that dog every single day.

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This was taken two weeks before she passed away. She was one great little dog. Rita is wild like Xica was. I’m hoping that Rita develops the same way Xica did, (having the same trainer and all). I see the potential for her being as great a dog as Xica was.

There’s a whole generation with a new explanation

I love this time of year in San Francisco. The sky is such a shade a blue it’s hard to imagine another metropolitan area in the world that is this beautiful. (Paris can be) Today was one of those days, beautiful blue skies, ambivalent clouds, warm sunshine and the things that make the City, the City. Like the crazy guy doing some sort of expressionistic ballet at Front and Market. The shoe shine guy laughing at the face I made trying to duck the dude. I wonder what happened to my old shoe shine guy Randall. He would always talk about the Giants and he loved him some Barry. Barry’s gone, so is Randall. And then there’s the guy with the sax at the BARF station. He probably doesn’t play it non-stop…oh hell maybe he does, but I always catch him playing “Take Five”. It just makes my evening.

dolphyngyrl just loves getting me wound up. Today’s offering. What’s funny is I had a rant formulating regarding the internet and how people feel that they can cross all sorts of lines on the internet because it’s what? Anonymous? It ain’t. Some ass clown on another blog responded to the British safety advert with the moonwalking gorilla by saying that he (and I say he because I really think it was said by a 14 year old boy with wet diapers) “laughed when cyclists died”. I thought “you little peckerwood, I ought to come to your house and make you change your stained underwear you’ve been wearing for a week”. But I never stop thinking there. I keep on thinking. I think about what makes people think it’s ok to say something like that. Would it be okay if his brother was hit by a car? Would you laugh then? How about if he were hit, but didn’t die? Maybe if he ended up being the dude with a drool cup, would he laugh then? And why be so mean and hateful? That always gets back to the same thing. It’s Reagan’s fault. This country didn’t used to be as mean as it is now, and it’s a result of the go go go 80’s, the lax regulations, the dialing back of government and the part where everybody takes whatever they can for themselves the rest of y’all be damned. (And the firing of the air traffic controllers) But that’s not how I was raised. Anyway, at the end of the day, a lot of folks rose up and defended all the people who rode and condemned those who act like asses, and good and right prevailed.

Little drips of title news, cut backs at Dinty Moore. I can’t even give those guys a bad time when you look at their executive compensation. I feel bad for the guys out on the street right now, things are tough. I highly recommend spending this time getting your paralegal cert if your book of business has up and died, or if you never had one in the first place. My other suggestion is to look at being an asset manager for one of the lenders who are taking a bath in their own blood right now.

Speaking of baths. When Rita is done drinking water the house looks like a bird bath.

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Then she tracks it through the house, luckily, she’s heading out the door which is behind the photojournalist.

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Then her skinny butt can be found on the wrong side of the new half fence hunting for squirrels.

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But at the end of the day, no matter what a punk she is to Beauregard, he still acquiesces to her female demands…(I’m cold.)

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They’re both currently playing alligator jaw in the front room. I’ll save y’all pictures of that, it’s kind of scary for the uninitiated.

with the barkers and the colored balloons

Yesterday I ran my ass off and finished the half fence. I had to do all the work as the day laborers that I got down at the Home Depot spent all their time taking siestas. Evidence:

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Lazy bastards sleep with their eyes open. Anyway, I did manage to get the fence complete in spite of my dead beat helpers. The gate is hung, but not complete.

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The problem with manuel labor is what it does to my hands. They crack like cement workers’ hands. I’ve tried L’Occitane shea butter, Udderly Smooth, (the instructions admonish you to wash udder and teat parts throughly wth clean water and soap before each milking to avoid contamination of milk) and Zim’s Crack Creme. And my hands are still cracking and hurt like hell. My middle finger broke open on the golf course today and bled like I’d been playing a contact sport. While it is a good idea to wear a helmet and a cup when golfing with me, golf is not a contact sport.

For what it’s worth, I love where I live. As much as I hate BARF, every night as we pull into Walnut Creek you can see Mt. Diablo casting it’s shadow on all of Contra Costa County. I live about a mile away from Mt. Diablo. I couldn’t be happier. Yesterday I went for a beautiful bike ride and only spent about a third of the time on city streets. Today I played golf about a mile and a half from my house. The course (which is now a little bloody) is on the edge of Mt. Diablo State Park. I don’t spend enough time taking advantage of this park, it’s gorgeous. Last time I took Beauregard out there some cows followed us up to the cattle grate. Beau wasn’t too sure about the whole bovine thing. Rita hasn’t seen a cow yet. It should be interesting. She has some serious prey drive. Sonofabun’s rat terrier bit me yesterday. I told him that next time he sees me, I’m bring Rita and telling her he’s a fat squirrel. That SOB has bitten me once before and broken the skin and snapped at me numerous times. Yesterday he couldn’t break the skin because he’s only got one tooth let, that snarky old smelly little bastard.

I was fooling around with the camera this weekend and got this shot:

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Doesn’t Beau look a lot like a realtor in this shot? Sans the Photoshop. He was so disinterested in the fence construction and the squirrels in the tree that occupied every moment of Rita’s time and every ounce of her attention. He’s really kind of an old lady at time. He really just couldn’t be bothered with either of us yesterday.

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Yesterday, the attitude was free. He was pissed off that I came home smelling of Sonofabun’s dogs. He didn’t know that the ‘Toine had tried to gum me to death again, and that my job was simply to let the little snots out and get them some food and water. Trust me Beau, they got NO LOVE. OK Bogey got a little, but ‘Toine is just a bitch.

I will explain Body for Life in a day or two, today I’m more interested in Hayseed Dixie.

And here’s a little test for y’all.  I caught up on some Law and Orders this weekend.  They had to one where the guy was the Foreclosure Consultant and was taking $50k outside of escrow and running.  (I’m sure the old Title Officer in me didn’t mean to grin when they hooked up the EO on a murder rap.)  He was getting the property through Quitclaims that he told the people were just until their credit was cleaned up.  Now, I know this is a typical scheme in these times, but usually they base things on real cases.  Anybody know what case this was? I know Financial Title had a problem in Hayward or San Leandro or something like that and they hooked up the EO, but I suspect this case happened back East.  Anyone?

By the way, contest is open until the 28th to name the 4th quarter loss for FAF.  I’m at 48.6 and dolpyngryl came in at 68 mil I think…grab your chance to win absolutely nothing!

Tach it up, tach it up, buddy gonna shut you down

The State of California likes us to smog our vehicles. I’m good with that, I think it’s a good idea. I’m just not so good with what it costs to get it done. Especially since the BMW registration comes up the first week in November and the truck registration follows in December. With the holidays and everything else and then paying the registration, sometimes paying the smog too is just a little more than the old budget can swing. So I’ve learned to pay the fees and wait to get the smog letter back and then go smog them. I have never had a vehicle fail. I’d like to think that it has to do with the fact that I do keep my vehicles in good working order. When something gets hinky, I get right on it. I change the oil regularly and do regular services. I should probably wash them more often, but there comes a point where you have to draw the line. That’s where I draw the line. If I have time to get the oil changed and get the 35 empty water bottles out of the back seat, that’s a good day and the actual act of applying soap and water to the exterior can be waived that weekend. It’s particularly stupid because my gym membership allows full service the local car wash for $10 instead of $20. It should be a no brainer, but by the time I remember again (again because it’s 6:21am and they aren’t open for another 99 minutes) it will be 2pm and the line will be out into the street. So it’s strangely complicated for me to wash a car, or two. Anyway, I got both vehicles in yesterday and $250 later, they both are now smogged. The original plan was to take the truck to the place on the corner and walk the Hounds of Hell to the pet store for bathes. But that place was a something and something and not a Test Only and there’s a difference and I had to drive clear down to Heather Farms to get it done for $80 more than a regular test would have been…because it’s a 1994 truck and anything before 1995 has to pay more. Dear State of California Department of Motor Vehicles, that was a rip. It passed, just like it’s done on every other every other year since 1994. Thanks for giving it to me up the ass yesterday. There was nothing else I could have done with that $80 yesterday. I wouldn’t have bought dog food, or people food for that matter. I wouldn’t have paid a bill or put it in the bank because I just didn’t need that extra $70. $160 to smog a vehicle is a rip.

Unfortunately the Test Only place was no where near a dog bath so I had to take them for a walk instead. They did great. They’ve actually always walked well together. It was the first time I’d walked Rita with Beau outside of our neighborhood. She was a little leery of some of the people we passed on the walkway (we were at Heather Farms). But I used her “leave it” command and she did great. We stumbled upon the Heather Farms dog park. I stood there for a few minutes considering letting the Hounds of Hell off leash to play with other dogs and then remembered Rita protecting Beau from Loki (protection Beau didn’t need but Rita was hellbent to provide) and decided that any dog that chose to play with Beauregard might be in for a long morning and thought better of the whole thing. Upon arriving at the Test site to get my truck there was a guy there with two Corgis. He wasn’t a very smart dog owner. His Corgis were acting up and talking dog smack at my dogs. I moved back so that a car blocked my dogs view and the Test Site guy came out to me. Then this jackass with the Corgis moves so his dogs can see mine AGAIN. Well, my guys have something to say now. Now I have not one, but two Dobermans barking back, talking their own version of dog smack. The Corgis now look like two Pepperdine students that went to East LA to prove they were cool. And my dogs are Jimmy the Nose’s enforcers. So I move again and tell the guy to please keep his dogs out of the sight of my dogs. (not mentioning that his little delinquents started the whole mess). So he does, for just then. I sign my papers, get my cert and head back to my truck. As I’m giving my guys the command to get up into the truck, Beau’s head starts swiveling around like Linda Blair in the Exorcist. (Yes, I did ask Linda Blair to “do that head thing” one night when she came in and sat down at the bar I was tending) This makes Rita’s head start whirling around and this Ass Clown with the Corgis is now walking his dogs over towards where we are. Dude, could you have just pulled your head out of your ass long enough to let me get my dogs into my truck and drive away? And I’m sure it would be my fault if something went hinky, even though your dogs were jawing at my dogs from the get go and you thought there was nothing wrong with that and didn’t attempt to correct your little munchkins.

Began career at the Continental Baths

On the way back up the hill, I stop at the dog baths and there are two Doberman already there. I stopped by the register to pick up a couple of towels and said to the gal “Have you ever had this many Doberman Pinschers in here at the same time before?”. She didn’t think so. As it turned out, it was this guy Frank, who I had met at the Lafayette Street Fair. He’s got a beautiful bitch and a rescue boy. The boy is floppy eared and skinny. The bitch is being shown today in San Jose. His daughter will be handling her. Frank took a look at Rita and said “Worms”. I told him I’d wormed her, and he said that yeah, they were dead but it would take a while to get the weight back on her. He asked if she was flighty and she is in constant motion. He said it’s from the worms. Their tummies are still damaged and it takes a while for that to heal and when it does, she’ll put the weight on. He said she’d never have the nice mass the Beau or his bitch does, but she’d eventually fill out like his boy had. I enjoy running into this guy, he’s a good guy. Two dogs washed, priceless. Their coats are so gorgeous and all the mud from the three weeks of raining is gone.

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You can see here that she’s got some musculature but just isn’t carrying an extra ounce of fat. And not one squirrel came out of the trees yesterday. You can also see how beautiful her red is when she’s clean.

I also spent some time out at Lowe’s (my home away from home). I got the wood for the fence. After some mathematics I determined that pre-cut picket stakes was the most economical way to go. It looks pretty good too. I’ll finish this off and hopefully build the gate today.

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Busy keeping less never getting more

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I dug a shallow grave for my career today.

Actually, the hole is now much larger.  It’s 10X 4 and it’s the basis for my first of two raised gardens.  I’ve got the fence framed and even the terminal poles for the dog run gate installed.  I even did my neighbors a favor and pulled some of the weeds in the front yard.  They’re really nice people who have been dealt a couple of really tough cards.  Her mother has Stage IV some kind of vicious cancer, his sister is fighting some other nasty cancer and the daughter has a brain tumor.  That’s the shitty end of the stick.  The least I can do is keep my weeds from giving him more headaches.  He’s running the house while she’s taking care of her mother.  Tough on a young family like them.

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Rita stand guard on her tree stump.  You can see how boney she is.  I feed her the same as Beauregard.  He weighs 76, she weighs 49.  But she never stops moving.  Ever.  Never.  She’s now finally sleeping and Beau and me couldn’t be happier.

Red flag, bull, charge!

One of my gentle readers forwarded me the following link from the LA Times. I guess he wanted to see my head blow off first thing in the morning. It did.

Still, at least half of what Americans pay for title insurance can be attributed to illegal referral payments, said J. Robert Hunter, insurance director for the Consumer Federation of America.

This guy clearly has no clue as to what we do. I give him credit for getting after the casualty guys after Katrina. They needed it. Oh it’s wind damage, not covered, oh it’s water damage, not covered, oh it was cause by the…blah blah blah. Too many wiggle words, too much bullshit. But title insurance is a different beast. We keep huge reserves. Yes, over 70%  of our customers will never need their title insurance. HOWEVER, I pitty the poor schmuck that doesn’t have it when something gets sideways.  That $2500 is going to go a long freaking way buddy. That number won’t even get you a retainer with the class of attorneys that a title company will hire for you. We’re pretty damned cheap when it’s all said and done with.

Half of the premium to illegal kickbacks? He ought to look at a title company P&L. I’ve seen a few in my time. Not so much Bobby. I know Alliance maintained a department that was questionable, but it wasn’t half of our budget. Tops and I do mean tops 3 to 5 percent. It also generated a lot of pieces that were specifically designed for the end-consumer. That’s right Steve, the guy who paid for the policy. Buyer’s guides, seller’s guides, borrower’s guides, all explained the process to the end user. Objectively. So I’d say even 3-5% is generous. They also generated our marketing campaigns. We did not give away sporting event tickets or anything else that could not be tied directly back to the consumer. We did not pay for bus trips to Pebble Beach. Promotions I was involved with involved candy canes, candy bars, valentines with candy hearts, home made cupcakes with babies and mardi gras beads. (and maybe our babies had mohawks) Cost per customer: around .50 cents. Not 50% of our operating income. So what this shows me is a clear misunderstanding of what we do for a living. Now, part of this is our fault. We should not be outsourcing to Bangalore, and on some levels we deserve what we’re getting now for allow that. On some levels, it reminds me of Martin Niemöller’s poem. (Not to detract at all from the horror of the holocaust, but rather to point out the inaction on our part, which in general can be compared to the inaction by the German intellectual community)

…When they came for me,
there was no one left to speak out.

There’s no one left to speak for us. Our jobs are gone and we’re the only ones that care. The government is bickering on who’s going to build a ridiculous wall between here and Mexico and our jobs are already gone. Maybe we can get jobs building the Wall.

And I have incredulously ask “What does $500k get you in Iowa?”

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Lot is 22210 sq. ft., Year Built: 2007, Central air conditioning, Basement, Fireplace(s), Dining room, Den, Laundry room, Hardwood floors, house is 3246 sq. feet. It’s a 4/3.5. Forced air heat. Central air conditioning. Interior features: Dining Areas, Eat In Kitchen, 1st Floor Family Room, Mud Room, Pantry, Unfinished Basement, 1st Floor Laundry, Carpeting, Tile, Maple Trim, Painted Trim, Dishwasher, Microwave, Stove And the basement is 1745 feet.

You want to know what you get for your money Mr. Washington DC Ass Clown? Ask the guy with World Savings who got the $40 million dollar check from Title Insurance of Minnesota. TIM wrote the check, that day. Zev ben Simon ran a pyramid-esque scheme. I don’t think he meant to in the beginning, I think the market moved against him and finally it became apparent what was going to happen and he ran. I’ve got to ask, sit in a US jail or an Israeli prison? He probably could have gone to Lompoc (Club Fed). Don’t know if Israel has that sort of hook up.

Title Insurance professionals actually review the records Bob-O and good ones find stuff like finding the forged notary that brought down a local company. They were renting space from a guy who was on the Board of Directors of the company. He was coming into the branch late at night and using the Escrow Officer’s notary stamp (that sat in her desk drawer) to forge reconveyances on his properties. He robbed Peter and paid Paul until I called the Escrow Officer and asked her to verify her signature on the recorded reconveyance. She was horrified, the FBI was called and he did 9 years. That’s what your premiums pay for Bob. That kind of expertise.

Or the guy who I threw out of ORTC. I wouldn’t do his deals because all of the vesting deeds were uninsured and he wouldn’t let me call his “aunties” who gave him the property. Next thing you know, dudes on the front page of the Oakland Tribune for stealing houses from old ladies. I sent that article to the Escrow Officer who was upset that I 86ed her client. That’s what title professionals see. That’s what we do, and that’s our value, Steve. Now what’s your value?

In a cap she looked much older

Life with a puppy is always an interesting place. Rita obviously went to the School of Hard Knocks. That’s ok, I did too. This morning, I’m running around trying to get out the door to get to work. Part of my Body for Life regimen is my breakfast of oatmeal and fat free cottage cheese. (by the way I’m 8 pounds toward my 50 pound goal) I put it all into a bowl and stir it up. It’s a lot less disgusting if I take the cottage cheese and put it in the blender and whip it. So I dump two new cottage cheese containers into the blender and spin them this morning. Then I put one up and the other I leave on the counter to put in my oatmeal, which is in the microwave. Then I think to myself “grey slacks, white shirt, pink stripes” and dash back to the bedroom to pull that out of the closet for work. When I get back to the kitchen, Rita is licking her chops. There’s a white foam all around her mouth. I look on the floor, nothing there. Look in the dining room, nothing there either. Hmm. I don’t know what she got into. Ding! The microwave is done, I pull out the oatmeal and set it down next to the now empy cottage cheese container on the counter. RITA!

Lobbing cannonballs

I don’t know who this guy is, but he sure makes me laugh. And think. He’s sure got his shorts in a twist over the Bloodless Empire. There may be some truth in it, but I’ve got to wonder, Dude, where’d you get that ax and why are you still grinding it? Still, they bowed out of Financial Title Company and have been replaced with their pricey bretheren at Untied Generally. As for the Bloodless Empire filing new rates, aren’t they filed? Shouldn’t have been that big of a mystery. It’s not like all the other companies don’t fall lock step into line.

And hot hot tip! A little bird told me there’s a Ginormous lawsuit filed in Alameda County yesterday against Alliance Title Company and Mercury Companies on behalf of the employees. Not sure how it all goes together. Stayed tuned for the Karl Rove email trail and 18 minutes of missing tape. I was walking the dogs tonight and I thought “I wonder if Patty Hauptman is feeling the heat?” It’s the same kind of heat we all were feeling up until the day she shit canned each and every one of us. How’s the Manolo Blahnik fit on that other foot?

There’s monster in my pants and he does a little dance…

Some spam just makes me laugh. Today’s offering:

The trophy can now be in your pants…

That was it. It said nothing more. And you just know that came from some toothless guy in some godforsaken butt crack of a third world country. And you know they paid him in washers.

Beauty school drop out

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Click me! Click me! Click me! I’m a thumbnail!

Poor Loki. He’s the greatest little dog. In two months my brother has done amazing things with him. He came and hung out why The Brother was driving Miss Daisy on Sunday. The three of them played great and Loki minded as well as Beau does. (In spite of himself Beau minds). He’s a great dog. Well, the SF SPCA and this parasitic sorry ass excuse for a dog trainer (one of the Bay Area’s premier dog trainers? Bullshit!) had the gall to write the rescue where Tom got Loki and told them that he hit Loki in class. Not only did she have her facts wrong (Loki did not get hit) but she thinks she knows how to train dogs. Give them more treats, give them more treats. NO, that just makes them fat chowhounds who do what they want. Correct the undesirable behavior and reward the desirable behavior. I’m a fan of the Monks, and the Dog Whisperer. (not the same style but parts of both theories make for a good dog IMHO). This horseshit that they practice at the SPCA is why people keep getting bit in San Francisco. What a bunch of wankers!

Here are some fine examples of Mullett Haiku.

Drunk at 3 p.m.
Requested AC/DC
Hootin’, hollerin’.

‘No smoking inside’
Save the butt behind my ear
Can’t kill the rooster.

Shirtless, beer belly
Judas Priest, ‘Breakin’ the Law’
Pissed off the neighbors.

Take her to Wendy’s
No shoes, no shirt, no service
Wait in the car, smoke.

No motorcycle
Tape player busted again
One teardrop tattoo.

Spent the night in jail
Super Lotto scratch-off win
Drunk, disorderly.

Let’s go to Wal-Mart
Need cheese puffs and wine coolers
Damn, the house won’t start

Now, I first saw Mullett Haiku on the Beer Church website. They had the finest selection of Mullet Haiku on the internet. It seems that they’ve taken in down. I’m very sad about that. Since the SF SPCA are such a bunch of pompous self absorbed ass clowns with (to steal a quote) a stick up their ass, we’re going to do some SFSPCA Ass Clown Haiku. Remember gentle readers 5/7/5.

Supposed to save lives
Forgot the Mission Statement
Now drinks bath water

Have at it!

Cocaine don’t make me lazy, champagne don’t make me crazy

 

Cocaine don’t make me crazy,
champagne don’t make me lazy.
Ain’t nobody’s business but my own.

Candy is dandy, but liquor is quicker.
You can drink all the liquor down in Costa Rica.
Ain’t nobody’s business but my own.

OK, because we aim to please here at PBE, a little about what to drink on New Year’s Eve…from a plastic tumbler. Hurricanes. There’s only one bar on Bourbon Street that the locals go to. I found it by sticking to my rule of avoiding places that had neon signs that proclaimed “Hurricanes”. I think this was good practice. The one place the locals go has no such sign and the day I found them a guy was sitting in there with his German Shepherd Dog laying at the foot of his bar stool. I thought “Who drives to New Orleans with their dog to go drinking? This must be where the locals hang out.” And it was.

My personal choice for champagne is Moet & Chandon. Unless I’m going to take it up a notch, in which case I would check out the Piper Hiedsieck or the flower bottle. After that you’re pretty much getting into a bunch of French words that I don’t understand. OK, you can’t go wrong with the Grand Dame. Actually, you can go wrong, very wrong, but that’s another story, kind of like Fight Club. And fergodsakes, stay away from the Asti Spumanti…unless you’re 19 years old, and in Italy. As for American sparkling wines, stay away from Cook’s. It’s a headache in a glass. Gloria Ferrer is making some decent offerings. Roederer Estate is also making some nice sparkling wines. I like Schramsberg’s Blanc de Noir, but I think that might just be a character flaw. The J Schram is very good for a higher end California offering. As I rule though, if I can’t afford the good shit, I just drink beer. Dutch beer.

Photojournalism

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Here we have the Old Man making the traditional Christmas cheeseballs (these are not the nasty ass kind, these are the THEY ROCK version) under the watchful eye of Executive Chef Pierre Beauregard.

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Here we have The Brother working diligently on his Beef Wellington, or possibly doing something with cheese, once again under the watchful eye of Executive Chef Beauregard and his attentive assistant Loki.

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One of my favorite ball players was Jeffrey Leonard. Here Loki does his best 1 flap down in honor of the Giant’s slugger.

But wait there’s more!

Apparently Patty Hauptman sent out a missive to her minions at Financial Title Company affirming her commitment to the Financial Title brand. Patty, is this commitment in the Liz-Taylor-I’m-trolling-for-my-8th-husband kind of way or the Owen-Wilson-I-need-a-big-time-out sort of way? Don’t all of your FTC folks feel all warm and fuzzy? I would.  Really.  OK, not.  So Patty, what’s the shelf life on this commitment?

But you can’t cut a chicken!

I think we need to write a list of New Years resolutions for Patty Hauptman and John Harritt. Gentle readers, have at it!

The Return of Photojournalism

Every move has it’s share of lonely dryer socks. You know, those things you know you own, but can’t find to save your life. You know, when the Hometown Mafia breaks into your house and says “Give me all of your flashlights and nobody gets hurt”. And you know you own 35 flashlights and can’t lay your hands on a single one and your house is now the scene of the most horrific crime in the nation. And CNN and MSNBC and Geraldo are all parked in their buses on your street and they’ve all got those giant satellite dishes, all because you couldn’t locate a flashlight? Or a corkscrew? Or the charger to the digital camera, which is why there’s been no photojournalism for nearly a month. Here I come to save the day! Underdog! Just as the information left my head it returned yesterday. I would not lose my laptop bag, so the digital camera charger would go with the laptop in the lap top bag. So without further adieu, allow me to present:

Dog who loves his new house:

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actually, what he loves is the new Trader Joe’s treats I’m teasing him with.

Bobby Flay is my bitch

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That is boneless, skinless chicken breast, barbecued over a gas grill with some Cajunland seasoning. Check it out it’s in the background on the left. I will slice that up onto some whole wheat bread and there’s your Body For Life lunch.

And the kitchen works too

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The kids across the street came over yesterday and dropped off a bowl of salsa that they had made from the tomatoes in their back yard. It was some kick ass salsa. I’m sauteing a chicken breast, then adding that kick ass salsa and wrapping it up in a whole wheat tortilla. Add a salad, perfect Body for Life dinner. Dear knees, help is on the way.

Disorderly conduct

This weekend featured dinner at Metro Lafayette. The place is owned by a sommelier and his wine list is impressive. Not in a let-me-stick-my-nose-up-in-there-air-so-that-when-it-rains-I-die sort of way, but in a how-the-hell-did-you-get-over-half-the-list-under-$50 sort of way. We both had the duck confit that was on a bed of black lentils with mango and pomegranate. It was so good that when the guy came to ask about dessert we both asked to have the duck again. We ended up with lemon cheesecake and an apple huckleberry crisp. The crisp was off the hook. The cheesecake was good, but a little bit of a let down compared to everything else we were brought that night. Drinking a 2005 Carpe Diem Cab, worked great with the duck. Tonight I hit the BevMo nickel sale and with some help from The Sommelier I came home with a Serabel Cote du Rhone. I know, I promised no French wine, but it was such a deal. It’s a good drinking wine too. Excellent at 2 for $21.99. Drink up mate!