Monday, December 31, 2007

2007..I knew you well.

I've been roaming the myriad halls of Bloggertown,and all the really cool kids are doing some kind of "Year in review" post.
A popular format is to post the first sentence,from the first blog of each month.
A memey kinda thing that I've been able to trace all the way back to lorraine's Spouse Eric,over at Behind the Camera.

I like this idea,and I like my friend CS's method of putting all this stuff into a single paragraph..So I'm going to steal it..
I haven't been back to even look at what this is gonna turn out like,but given my habit of drinking and blogging,I think it will probably resemble the fuzzy recollections I have of the entire decade of the 70's...or was it the 80's?

I've been up and down in Bloggertown today,and everything seems just fine.
...mouse hover HERE. I'm pretty sure Anna-Nichole had more fun this week than I did..what with her all expense paid trip to the Bahamas and all. After my last big rant,I thought it would be nice to share something heartwarming with all of my dear friends in Bloggertown.Overheard at the Park.."The time has come",the Walrus said..
.."to talk of many things".Today is Canada day(formerly known as Dominion Day).Or so I'm told. O-Town is in the news! You know how you're nearsighted as Mr. Magoo,and on top of that you're severely night blind,and you go out to have a cigarette,and hear the neighbor's sweet tempered dog at the fence,so you walk over to the fence and reach over to pet her,only to discover that she's in heat,and the neighbor has imported an ill-tempered male to breed her to,and said ravenous stud takes a HUGE exception to your blatant intrusion on his territorial imperative,and you end up frantically counting your digits to ensure that you still have all ten?I spent much of the weekend helping my neighbor set up his new laptop. I like to fall in love at least once a day.. and then maybe run away with a violinist..Winter landed smack dab in the middle of O-Town on December first!..

Yep..Definitely the 60's.

You know,after reading through the past year,it suddenly occurs to me that the truly amazing thing about '07 is that not only was I able to maintain prior friendships I had made through the miracle of blogging,but that I was able to garner some great new friends as well..

Happy New Year to every one of you!


Saturday, December 29, 2007

Drunken Blogging...Episode XIXth nervous breakdown: Arnie's New Years Resolutions

Beginning January 1st,2008,it will be illegal,and punishable by $100.00 fine to commit the following heinous acts of fuckery in the great state of Cal-I-For-Ni-A;

1) Smoking in an automobile with a minor child in the vehicle.

2) Using a cell phone,or any wireless device while driving..UNLESS!'s a hands free device.

Plus!) If you are 16 or 17 years old,you may not use any wireless device while operating a motor vehicle,..hands free,or otherwise...

Here's the thing..(tip o' the lid to lorraine).
By my way of thinking,all this stuff strikes me as totally bitchen,(or beefin'...or groovy,or the cat's pajamas..what do I know?).
I mean,anyone with an ounce of social grace would have to agree that these directives only promote the responsible,and conscientious behavior of the public.
Trapping innocent children in a rolling nicotine chamber is just bad form.
Why not just drop a few canisters of Zyclon-B in their lunchbox,and send them tidily off to school?..
And lord knows I'm gonna feel a helluva lot safer riding my bike to and fro,without having to worry about some self absorbed twat on her cellphone,blathering endlessly to the person she just talked to 3 minutes before,or will talk to 3 minutes hence,running my ass down in the crosswalk when she should have been..I don't know,..PAYING ATTENTION TO DRIVING HER TWO TON FRIGGIN' VEHICLE ON CITY STREETS!!..where myself,sundry other pedestrians,and small animals like to traverse.

This is common sense people!!
...wait a minute?..


Why,..we really don't need to waste time and taxpayer dollars passing ONE MORE FUCKING PIECE OF USELESS LEGISLATION RESTRICTING THE RIGHTS OF OUR CITIZENS!!..
..not to mention pulling the local constabulary away from their precious donuts,and regularly scheduled nooners to enforce these fascist "guidelines",when all it really takes is for everyone in this country to pull their heads out of their asses,and THINK FOR THEMSELVES FOR ONE GODDAMN INSTANT!!..

Did I mention that bicyclists will be required to have headlights while riding at night?..

..don't get me started.

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Friday, December 28, 2007

To those of you that stop by on Friday..

What the hell are you thinking??..

You know the music is gonna be sappy,and melancholy,..probably sans vocals*,..and should never be taken if you are pregnant,may become pregnant or have any expectation of ever getting laid.


*except in this case,where the music and vocals are sappy,and melancholy..I love this stuff!

"Red is the Rose"


Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Christmas Wrap..

Christmas in Sling's Domain was,yet again,wondermous!!..
So was my birthday!..Yes,I turned 54 yesterday.

*Note to self:
Next year,try to drop hints of an entirely less subtle nature...

Of course,everyone was understandably busy with their holiday celebrations yesterday,so feel free to smother me with hugs,kisses,and hearty handshakes today!..I'll wait....

Moving right along..Let's get to some pix!

The Lizzard King's family,which is very much my family here in O-Town,spent the day with us,bringing along the little kidlets.
Who can argue that having children around on Christmas morn isn't simply the best thing in creation?..Nobody.
From left to right;
LK's Mom,little A,The SIL (Who made me the most wonderful chocolate birthday cake!),Young Matt,and Brother B.

Mom and Aunt C...Aunt C always gives me my favorite long sleeve shirts on Christmas..Little Newt,helping his cousin open a present...Young Matt has seen this sittin' around for days unwrapped,but appears genuinely surprised by his new rolly ball-bell ringing-whirly-thing'a'ma'jig....A handy skill for any young man to possess! I forget what this is,but it has to do with the movie Cars..Newt is well pleased. ..not so much with this nerf dart weapon of mass destruction.
"Crap!..How many of these damm things am I gonna get??"..
"Two!..get over it".

I can see by the bottom of my empty glass,that it's time to get a refill,and make the rounds of Bloggertown...

Oops!..One more thing...
The charming and effervescent Hat sent me a beautiful compilation of her wonderfully soothing piano compositions,which I received last Friday!!..It didn't get lost in the mail Sunshine,but it seems my e-mail response may have..(okay,'s probably sitting on her desk,under the crystal and pewter statue of "Pan")..In any case,..Thank you Angie!..I.LOVE.IT!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Call it Tradition..

This is a reprint of the post I did last Christmas.Many of you have read it,but this past year I have been blessed with many new friends that I wanted to share it with.....

"First Christmas"

"Little Sling..Wake up!..Santa Claus came!"...

I adored my big sister.She was,after all,the source of all the the important life skills I had acquired to date.
Things like,it isn't polite to snatch bees from the flowers,and I needn't fear the gentle daddy-long-legs,because he makes ice cream.These things had served me well enough to trust that it would be wise to follow.I shuffled after her,rubbing the sleep from my eyes,piggy-toes peeking out from the tattered feet of my flannel PJ's,into the living room to meet this "Santa Claus".

I had met Grandma and Grandpa.Aunt Doris,and Uncle Maurice.
They smelled like candy,and were always eager to sit me on their laps and tell me stories,or rock me gently to sleep.One can't have too many acquaintances of this nature,I surmised.
Nothing,not even the dutiful counsel of my big sister,had prepared me for this wondrous apparition..

Santa Claus was a giant!
The twinkle-twinkle-little-star he wore for a hat brushed the ceiling.
He wore a miraculous coat of multi-colored baubles,shining silver 'basketti,and softly glowing lights that bubbled lazily, just like dad's beer!..and he brought things,..marvelous things.

My eyes were too small to open wide enough to take in the bonanza of satin wrapped packages,and I couldn't tell you today what treasures lay within..Save one.
Circling Santa's feet,amber headlight shining,and grey smoke puffing from it's engine,was a REAL choo-choo-train!

These memories are what remain, a half century after the fact.It's my very first,and most enduring recollection of Christmas.Which,as my all-knowing big sister was later to inform me,was also the occasion of my third birthday....A blessing on all your houses..


Friday, December 21, 2007

Beatles and Bluegrass

It's Friday Jukebox Video time boys and girls!..
Today we bring you something original...Well,..original in that it's my own interperatation of a classic Beatles' tune.
I like to say "interperatation",because I have never been able to play anything that sounds even remotely like the original.
This video only took about 12 takes...

..this is so not gonna happen again!..hope you enjoy.


Thursday, December 20, 2007

Apparently,Fall stops at the corner of Stafford street,and 2nd avenue..

In addition to being shamelessly hooked on American Idol,I watch every science,history,discovery,and otherwise trivia packed production of useless esoterica I can lay my eyes on.
This may not turn out to be such a good idea,because now I'm becoming convinced that the end of the world is at my very doorstep!

If we don't get ourselves pulverized by an errant meteor the size of Texas,then surely some remote island who's name I can't think of right now is gonna slide into the Atlantic,creating a mega-tsunami that will come roaring over the Sierra Nevada's with a vengeance that would make Noah go,"DAMM"!!..

Failing that,then certainly a bazillion acres of Yellowstone will erupt in an apocalyptic,lava spewing ,hellfire and brimstone catastrophe not seen since..well,..ever.

Colliding galaxies,black holes,continental drift,and pandemic diseases that make the Black Death look like a mild case of the "sniffles" are all potential candidates for the annihilation of our planet in general,and our species in particular.

In all of these scenarios,the narrator du jour cautions us that it's not a question of if,..but when!
..and lest we forget,..there's always the ever present threat of global warming.
I submit,for your edification,the following proof.
I stood on my own very street corner,and captured these subsequent photos;

This is the view looking North.You can see that these trees have,according to nature's plan,lost all of their foliage..I find these seasonal silhouettes comforting..

However!..This is the view facing South...Now,these are decidedly deciduous trees (wasn't that delicious?) yet they simply refuse to acknowledge that the Winter Solstice is but 2 days hence..

..You just can't argue with photographic evidence!

...Under the cicumstances,one can only hope that the inevitable,"Great Dark Night" is postponed at least until after January,when the new season of American Idol begins.


Monday, December 17, 2007

A brief pause..

I once saw Jose Feliciano bust a "B" string on stage,and never skip a beat.
I watched James Taylor walk on stage with his guitar in one hand,and a tiny amplifier in the other hand,and proceed to bring down the house.
And I got to hear Dan Fogelberg tell my whole life story in melodic verse. ..Cool.


The 411..

..the skinny,the scuttlebutt,the info,and what's really goin' on.

This is the very predictable time of year,when business slows down.
The housing market is going down the crapper,people are trading in their dollars for pesos so that they can buy euros,and everyone is squeezing every last drop of simulated copper outta their pennies so they can afford I-Phones and WII's,in the hopes of having a little bit left over to purchase things like gasoline,and maybe some food. <-------(I think I just broke my world's longest run on sentence record!).
I know what you all are thinking.

"Holy crap!..How is this gonna affect Sling?"..
Only just a little...Really.

We had a little pow-wow this morning,and Mr. K laid out the strategy.
We have jobs lined up,but many of them won't be ready to do 'till after the first of the year..It's all about cash flow in a small business like ours,so 2 of the fellas are going to get laid off next week.
Neither of which is me...

Does that sound mean?..It's really not.I've been on the short stick of seniority enough times to understand the situation.
They are recent hires,single guys,and Mr. K has assured them they will be qualifying for unemployment..They seem content with that.
The rest of us are encouraged to use this lull in production to full advantage.

I have no problem taking off early a few days a week,and even the occasional midweek day off until things pick up...It's up to our own discretion at this point,and my needs are few.

Once again I need to sing the praises of the K's.
I've never had an employer that actually sat down with the employees,and gave them a face to face heads up under these circumstances...Let alone try to work out a program that takes everyone into consideration.

So if you spot me lurking around Bloggertown at odd hours,it's a good thing!

It's Monday,..and life is semi-retired in Sling's Domain...

Friday, December 14, 2007

Friday Jukebox Video..

Whenever The Lizzard King and I go to "The big City" to stock up on all the stuff we can't get here in O-Town,,things manufactured in this century,he usually plays one CD in particular that has one song I've always liked..
I never knew who sang it,because I don't have the patience to bother remembering anyway.
Still,..I got into the habit of asking him to ,"Play that song by that guy"..
Tonight,in honor of FJV,I asked him,"What's the name of that song by that guy?"..
Turns out,and as everyone in the Western Hemisphere but me probably already knows,it's the love theme song from a popular television show...
I pretty much like everything about this song.The guitar,the voice,and especially the tag line,"..and I don't know why,I can't keep my eyes off of you".

..I like remembering having felt like that.

"You and Me"


Thursday, December 13, 2007

Around the shop...

Our humble cabinet shop,along with a few other small businesses,is located in what must be O-Town's version of an "industrial complex"..

This amounts to ourselves,a worm farm,(this Summer Dennis sold over 1,500,000 worms!),a fence company,and a small auto parts recycling operation...not really big enough to call a junk yard,but still.

Having nothing of consequence to blog about this midweek,I took a few minutes during lunch break to snap some pix..Some Photoshopped for fun,some,..not so much.

What would Freud think? The '08 model,4 sparrow bird feeder!..The little beggars went through 5 lbs in 2 weeks.
..a watercolor.
..something optimistic.
And my favorite!

See y'all in Bloggertown!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Comfort Food Recipes for Bachelors..

The Lizzard King and I have a pretty good working arrangement.
He does the cooking,..I do the dishes.Mostly,we barbecue...Lots of beef,and chicken and great greasy sausages around these parts!...Yesterday morning,we awoke to this!..
..Notice the huge gaping hole where our propane tank used to was?..I know,I know..If you've been reading this blog for awhile,you might think that we are getting ripped off every five minutes around this neighborhood,but it's really not like that at all..We have lovely neighbors,and a generally quiet atmosphere 99% of the time...We also have a population of homeless peeps that live down on the river,which is only one block away.This time of year,it's not uncommon to lose your ill-guarded propane tank to someone that is just trying to stay warm on these freezing nights...LK and I decided they are welcome...damm.
Still,and under the circumstances,we decided to actually cook dinner in the kitchen..An activity usually reserved for Sunday breakfast...Last night's fare?

As with any well planned supper,we enjoy having an appetizer..In this case,Ruffles Potato chips,Onion Dip,and cheap Red Wine..Now when I say cheap,I don't mean lousy.This is wine country after all.
We acquired this bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon for a buck eighty-nine!..Full bodied,with great legs! ..and the main course?..

***Bachelor Meatloaf***
3 lbs extra lean hamburger
2 eggs
About a dozen Ritz crackers
A buttload of chopped Red Onion..we love red onion.
8 0z can of Tomato Sauce
Garlic Salt
Chili Powder
black pepper

Cooking Instructions:
Put the burger in a huge bowl.
Add eggs,smashed up Ritz crackers,a couple handfulls of Red Onion,Garlic Salt,Chili Powder and Black Pepper to taste.
Squish all that stuff together for a bit,..But not too much!..Otherwise it will turn out all hard and compacted,and totally unsuitable for leftover meatloaf sandwiches.
In a Pyrex baking dish,shape all this into that shape that meatloaf always comes in,and pour on the tomato Sauce...Cover with aluminum foil.
Cook at 400 degrees for about 55 minutes,or until you're too hungry to wait any longer.
The end result will look something like this!

Okay..This shit was so good,that I even had seconds!..Something I almost never do.
For a side dish,we had gourmet scalloped potatoes!
Whatever comes in the box
Cooking Instructions:
Whatever it says on the side of aforementioned box.

..and for dessert!..
Cupcakes!...again with the box deal.
Serve with more Cabernet,if Lizzard King didn't already drink it all..bastard..


Friday, December 07, 2007

The Census Inquisitor distracted me..

..It's Friday Jukebox Video time!

I'm told that this is a Welsh lullaby..I'm told that by people that have never been anywhere near Wales,or even so much as ridden a Welsh pony..But still,if Wales is anywhere near Heaven,this is what it must sound like to visit.

Thank you Hat!

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"Just one more question..Do you still beat your wife?"..

I guess it was about 3 months ago,that we received a questionnaire from the census bureau informing us that we are required to complete the form,and send it back.
Well don't ya know that the Lizzard King and I looked at each other momentarily,and shit-canned it...
Some few weeks after that,we received another letter..

"The Census Bureau chose your address,not you personally,as a randomly selected sample.You are required by U.S. law to respond to this survey(Title 13,United States Code,Sections 141,193,and 221).We estimate this survey will take about 30 minutes of your time."..

Allow me to count the number of wrong buttons these motherfuckers just pushed.

  • You chose my address,and not me personally?..Well you can ask my address any goddamm thing you want Sparky,but I most decidedly DO take it personally when you roll up in here with a list of invasive,none o' yer business,like you're someone I owe money to queries!
  • I'm required by law to respond??..Let me just pull out that copy of the United States Code I keep stuck up my ass,and look up the part where I gotta say anything without a lawyer present..or that I even need to open my mail to begin with!..How do I know yer not Canadian spies,trying to gather logistical information as a prelude to invading Fresno?..I'm not falling for that again.
  • A 30 minute survey you say?..That's not a survey..That's a friggin' interrogation!..Is that a waterboard in your pocket,..or are you just glad to see me?
I decided not to throw this letter away,..choosing instead to burn it.

So guess who comes a knockin' at my door this very eve?..
A very polite and apologetic representative of the Census Bureau,of course.

"I'm sorry to bother you,but we haven't received your response to our questionnaire,and I was wondering if this would be a convenient time to go over the survey?"

"No..It's not a good time for me right now..Can you return next Monday at about the same time?"..

"Next Monday will be fine sir..Have a nice evening".

In truth,I really do understand that they use this information as a means of allocating resources to our communities,and that,as a good citizen,it's my civic duty to participate.
I just think they could have asked nicely...just sayin'.

So..Next Monday I'll sit down with young Mr.Suit,and answer his questions.
I imagine the conversation will go something like this...

Young Mr.Suit: "This won't take long Mr. Sling.There are only 135 questions we need to go over..Are you ready?"

Sling: "Fire away Sparky!"..

Sparky: "Fine then,..question number one..How many people live here?"

Sling: "You call this livin'??..Good god man,..look around!..The plumbing's shot,the windows don't seal properly so the wind comes whistlin' through like a friggin' bat outta hell!..Did you see the foyer on yer way in??..Lemme tell ya somethin' Sparky,...when I was your age..."

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Tomorrow...Part II

...which I guess is actually Today!..You know,I really didn't think this whole title thing through.
I guess I was all twitterpated about all the marvelous things that happened;..

***Today In History!***

In many parts of Germany,and Austria,today is "Saint Nicholas'" day.
Traditionally,Sinter Klaus leaves gifts in the stockings of all the good little boys and girls..
This is cool on so many levels!..Also..

1768- The first edition of the Encyclopedia Brittanica was published.

1865- The 13th amendment to The Constitution was ratified,..banning slavery.

1933- U.S. federal judge,John Woolsey,rules that the James Joyce novel,Ulysses,is not obscene.

2006- Photos taken by the Mars Global Explorer suggest the presence of liquid water.

2007..11:59 A.M.- Sling's first and only Grandson was delivered,by Cesarean section,this very morn!!..Oh yes!
At an imposing 20 inches tall,and a hefty 8 lbs. 5 oz,little Jackson burst upon an unsuspecting world...He,along with my 3 lovely Granddaughters,have pretty much guaranteed my immortality...thank you Lord.
Mom and Slinglet are doing just fine!

I'm pretty sure he has my...Moustasche.

..Jackson is an old family name.
My daughter did me proud by carrying on that little bit o' tradition!

..speaking of Jackson..

It's Thursday,December 6th,2007...and life continues to come full circle in Sling's Domain.


Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Tomorrow...Part I

I've noted in passing,that if you live long enough,you can pick any day on the calendar and attach some kind of personal significance to it.
This is the gift that only comes with age.
That's right!..
You have to walk up and down upon the Earth,and travel to and fro in it before you can really kick back in the air conditioned comfort of,..well,..having lived.
..Not that I'm all that ancient,(reflects on image in the mirror,..oh yeah,..still got it),but I have been 'round the block a time or two,and around the sun nearly 54 times(Christ!..No wonder I'm dizzy!)...
Anybesides,..This is the time of year,when I think very many of us tend to examine our lives,and take stock of the wealth we have accumulated,squirreled away,and patiently tended in an effort to leave something of ourselves for future reference.

If you think I'm talkin' about material stuff, "Next Blog" now..
..I knew you wouldn't. ;) be continued..Tomorrow.


Monday, December 03, 2007

One for Rainey..

My dear friend lorraine is only just recently recovering from a seasonal bout of the "glumps"..

Given the selfless nature of her spirit,I can only conclude that;
a) She has some concerns about people she loves,..and
2) This too,shall pass.(By His Grace).
Happy,(sorta Christmas) music follows...

"Round and round"

..I was savin' this for a Rainey day.


Top hats and Teddy bears...

Winter landed smack dab in the middle of O-Town on December first!
Whoever (whomever?) figured out our whole calendar system,(I'm pretty sure it was the Catholics,..or the Mayans),had it nailed right to the minute!..The average temperature has dropped 20 freakin' degrees,and I've noted some fairly grisly storm clouds outside,even as we speak.

Okay,..I realize that Winter doesn't "officially" start until the solstice,but it's hard enough to make a point without having to adhere to actual facts..The Republican debates will bear me out on this.

It seems that those party animals in Sudan have pardoned Ms. Gillian Gibbons for her unfortunate faux pas, allowing the students in her class to name their little Teddy bear mascot "Muhammad"....This pleases me,..and probably Teddy Roosevelt as well.
Still,..she needs to get the hell outta Dodge post haste in order to avoid any further unpleasantness...Fair enough.

Last night,I dreamed that my best friend,GB,who (whom?) I haven't seen for 20 years stopped by my 56 room mansion to tell me that he was going to New York.
He was only 3 feet tall,including the beaver skin Top hat he was wearing.
This struck me as extremely odd,seeing as how,up to that point,I thought I only had 27 rooms.

My good friend baybay got himself a brand new laptop this weekend!
He's kind of a rookie at this whole computing deal,so I helped him set up his e-mail,and guided him through some of the perils and pitfalls of navigating the interwebs..He was all grins!

..It's Monday,..and life is cold as a witches' tit in Sling's Domain.