Monday, December 10, 2007

Okay, so I've missed a few days...

Yes, I did it. I broke the Eddie-torial Pledge.

That means that you get your money back.

Just return this blog to the place you purchased it, with the original packaging and receipt.

Offer void in Albany, NY.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Here She Comes!

Back when I worked in AIDS services, the director of our agency had a holiday tradition--every year he would dance in the hallway and sing Here Comes Suzy Snowflake. He was always kind of surprised that none of the rest of us had ever heard of the song or Suzy.

I've kind of lost touch with him over the years, but through the magic of the internet, I've found Suzy. I'd like to dedicate this post to Steve, wherever he is.




And just because, I think he'd really get a kick out of it, here's Soul Coughing's slightly more disturbing version:



So, yes, Virginia, there is a Suzy Snowflake. I hope she hasn't been visiting your area already this winter!

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Shouldn't he be called an oce-little?

Public Service Announcement to those readers I pretend to have: Cuteness Alert! Cat Alert!

This is the newest addition to the Louisville Zoo family:

So I was reading the story about it in the paper, and looking at the pics, when I something struck me as somewhat familiar: the derring-do, the exploits, the fearless attitude, and, above all, those ears!

Then, it hit me!




Chiquito's a little bit ocelot!

Monday, December 03, 2007

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Some Notes About Bardstown Road Aglow

Last night was Bardstown Road Aglow, one of my favorite events of the year. Bardstown Road runs through the heart of what is considered the most “artsy” part of town. It’s not too far from our house and is a fun place to hang out and an even better place to shop. I think it’s probably got one of the greatest concentrations of locally-owned, independent-minded businesses in town. Our music shop is there. So is the best bookstore in town. And our coffee shop hang out. And my comic shop.

I admit that in recent years, there’s been an invasion of yuppie bars and trendy clothing shops that has displaced some of the antique stores, junk shops, and cooler spots, but there’s still a great selection of places to go.

Aglow was started twenty-some odd years ago as an effort to promote shopping in local businesses for the holidays. It’s a lot of fun. Musicians wander the streets. Stores run specials and give out refreshments. Everything stays open a little later than normal. It seems like Louisville is being overrun by the big boxes and huge commercial developers more and more these days, so with the economy faltering, the local guys need all the help they can get. This is a fun way to give them some support.

I took my camera with me, intent on doing a photo-commentary, but discovered that the battery was dead the first time I took it out. Curse you technology!

So, instead of a bunch of photos, here’s some quick bullet points. Follow the links to learn more about some of our cool local businesses.

We started out the evening with yummy sushi at Café Mimosa. At least I did. Keith had sesame tofu. Which was also yummy. They have the best vegetarian sushi in town, in my opinion.

The crowds were lighter than usual, although there were still a ton of people out. I think the forecast of rain later in the evening kept folks away. The smaller shops were still packed, but popular stops like Ear X-tacy were not nearly as full as usual.

Biggest disappointment: No demos and samples at the grocery. The manager told us that they had wrapped up before we got there, which meant they ended way early, because they were our first stop. And we hit the road right at the beginning of the event.

The scary conservative churches seem to have the best cookies. No Jesus, please! Just cookies!

Cider here. Hot chocolate there. I was awash in warm beverages! Still had room to end the evening with Huber’s cider at Heine Brothers, though.

Mmmmmm! Fresh cookies from Kizito. It just don’t get any better at all.

Was a little dismayed (in a good way) to find out that Josh Ritter, Tegan and Sara, and Digby all have new releases out. Looks like 2007 still has some musical treats left in it. Guess what I’ll be picking up come payday?

Lots of costumes out: Several solo Santas, plus a whole pack of Santas of various ages, size, and genders, the Grinch and all his co-stars, and a group of Victorian carolers.

Several buskers too: We watched one guy with a bagpipe get chased away from one store, while on another block there was a mandolin player and a saxophonist. And then there was the wandering harmonica player, who latched on to people and blew little tunes at them while walking in front of them or beside them, until they either gave him money or it became obvious they wouldn’t. Then he latched on to someone else. He was especially annoying because he didn’t say anything, just tooted on his harmonica. It was like being assailed by a noisy mime.

We took a smell test at one of the New Age healing places. I seemed to like the “Male Tonic” most. Hmmm…..

As usual, I spent the most money at All Booked Up, who started their December sale last night. Everything 30-50% off. I love used book stores, and they're one of the last good ones left in town. And for the third or fourth year in a row, I passed up the hardback collection of Barbarella strips to buy a small stack of other stuff. One of these days, it’s not going to be there, and I’m going to regret not buying it.

Instead, I indulged in one of my favorite sub-sub-sub-genres of reading: books by traditional Catholics decrying everything that’s changed in the Church since Vatican II. I got one about the “tragic unraveling” of the women’s religious orders and another that pretty much comes out and calls all the American bishops heretics. Fun stuff! (Okay, I admit. I’m a little weird.)

We never did see the Louisville Bagpipe Corps or Pokey Lafarge. Bummer.

Still, Pokey or not, it was a successful evening for us. Lots of fun. Lots of cookies. And a book about rebellious nuns. What more does one need?

Remember, support your local businesses when you go holiday shopping!

Hey Pokey! Sing us out!

Friday, November 30, 2007

Another Early Holiday Gift: TMBG New York City

I need happiness, perkiness, and joy today. It's been a loooong week at work--much motion and activity, but too little accomplished. I hate the week after a short week.

So, anyway, this isn't the official video for this song, but I like it. I stay away from the amateur attempts at song videos because they can be so lame, but this one has a real polish to it. Plus, I'm nuts about typography.




Tomorrow night is one of my favorite events of this or any other season.



What it's like to thrift in Omaha.


What to get Popeye for Christmas.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Ever get one of those songs stuck in your head for days?

A little while ago, I watched a documentary that used a song as the opening, and it ended up stuck in my head for several days afterwards. Since this is the season of giving, I thought I'd share it with you.

Here is the great Marlene Dietrich singing Where Have All the Flowers Gone.




The version I heard in the film was in German, but I couldn't find that one online.

Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Have an early present on me!

It's been one of those days where I tried all day to accomplish one simple task--turning in my timesheet--but got sidetracked every single time I set out to do it. I feel like I ran, ran, ran all day without actually getting anything done. I hate days like this, and they leave me too braindead to actually contemplate anything remotely approaching coherent.

So, here, have an early holiday gift:




Because, who doesn't like the Go Go's singing the Beach Boys?

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

How I Spent My Thanksgiving Break

Being part two of a few more, each just a bit more stupefying than the last...
(At least this installment includes a video!)

By Michael Edward Mitchell, Age 43


Black Friday was really different for us this year. We’re the typical get up early, hit the stores as soon as they open types. I draw the line at standing outside places before they open, and of course we don’t frequent the evil empire.

Keith usually wants to hit a Staples or the like and a Radio Shack for their early bird deals. By the time Black Friday rolls around, we generally have 90-95% of our holiday shopping done, so we’re looking for deals and stuff for US!!!!

There’s one strip mall in town that has a Staples and Radio Shack side-by-side (it’s also got a you-know-what there, but we just ignore them). While Keith is entertaining himself, I’m a few doors down at Michael’s, finishing off my baking and candy-making supply needs. They always have an early bird deal where you get 25% off your entire purchase before 9.

Sometime between 7:30 and 8:00, we’re both finished and we meet at the car to head across the road to Shoney’s. We’ll fuel up on the breakfast bar and watch the sun come up and plot our next moves. There might be one or two more stores we want to hit, but most of the rest of the day for us will be spent in Barnes and Noble or Half-Price Books. We'll also make a point to hit some local businesses along the way too.

From start to finish, though, this year was completely different. First off, the Shoney’s closed, causing much consternation about where we would watch the sun come up. Then, Keith got an email about a special advance online sale Best Buy was having that happened to include the one item he was going to Staples to get. After he ordered that, he eliminated one of his major stops in our strip mall starting point.

Since we didn’t have to be at Staples when they opened, he decided to hit the Radio Shack in our part of town. Lo and behold, they are so off the beaten path that he was the only one in the store and was able to get all of the special sale items he was interested in. (That never happens.)

Well, the Radio Shack happens to be across from the Shoney’s in our hood, so I chowed down, while he shopped. Then we headed over to Michael’s. (Unfortunately, there’s not one in our part of town.) I only needed a few things there, so it was a quick stop. I did get a new candy thermometer, which I really needed.

After that we hit Target, for a jacket I wanted that was on sale. Then we went to the new Half-Price books, which is quite large, and quite nice. Lots of room to spread out and look and lots of comfy chairs to relax in while you browse. Good selection of graphic novels and trades, plus lots of other interesting stuff to look at. Just the kind of place we could spend several hours in, which, of course we did.

I ended up getting the first Nextwave hb, plus some CD’s, including The Age of Consent from Bronski Beat, which was really weird, because I’d been looking up BB videos on YouTube the other day. Like this one:



How's that for a little bit of holiday cheer?

After this, things took a real left turn.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Our Pledge To You!

For what it's worth, anyway...

From now until the end of the year, expect a blog post every day here at the old Eddie-torial hangout. I'm not guaranteeing that every day will be content-rich, mind you, but at some point during the day, I will spit in the face of the status quo and throw something up here.

In the meantime, if you're a Neko Case fan (and if you're not, I don't want to know about it), Bloodshot Records has her first three CD's on sale from now until the end of the year! Details here.
In my book, it's always okay to pick up a little something for yourself while you're buying presents for everyone else.

How I Spent My Thanksgiving Break

Being a long and somewhat boring attempt at a timely blog post.

By Michael Edward Mitchell, Age 43

Last Wednesday was pretty uneventful at work. With most folks in the building off, it seemed like it was a nice, quiet day. I only learned later that appearances can be deceiving.

Our regularly scheduled payday would have been Friday, when everyone is off. So, we got paid yesterday instead, but with actual checks instead of pay advices—no direct deposit. I went to the bank at lunch and put my check in and got out enough cash for the weekend.

Keith was off all last week, so he picked me up after work. We celebrated the holiday eve by going to Shoney’s for the breakfast bar, where we also finalized our plans for the next day.

We were invited to go to my mother’s house for Thanksgiving, so we stopped at the grocery to pick up the ingredients for the dishes we were bringing. My mom had also advised us to bring whatever beverages we might want, so we got some store-brand diet cola with lime. As an impulse, I grabbed a cheap bouquet of flowers to take as well.

Thursday, I got up very early to fix our corn and pepper surprise, which was the side dish I volunteered to bring. Since I’m not a fan of pumpkin pie, I also whipped up a honey bun cake as a desert alternative.

Then I got ready to do my traditional volunteer stint. Our agency operates the Meals on Wheels program for our area, and every Thanksgiving, they do a special meal delivery. For the past several years, I’ve volunteered to help out at their “command central”—getting the meals and the delivery routes together for the delivery volunteers to come pick up.

This year, the program manager asked me to also ride along with one of the delivery folks and take some pictures for them. Since she lives two streets over from me, she offered to pick me up in the morning. I got everything for our trip finished up and loaded in the car, then woke Keith up. The plan was for him to pick me up at command central after the deliveries were done. Then we’d head south to my mother’s.

I was ready at 8:40, and sat down to wait for my ride. At 9:15, I decided something was wrong, since she’s not one to be that late without calling first. I called her house and found out from her brother that she had fallen and broken her arm at the office Wednesday afternoon and would not be going to the meal delivery. Guess it wasn’t such a quiet day at the office on Wednesday after all! I was a little perturbed that this had taken place right down the hall from me, and no one had bothered to say anything about it. Even worse, I was completely oblivious to the whole thing.

So it was time for Plan B. Keith dropped me off at command central, where I discovered that two of the workers had been dispatched to pick me up. They showed back up a few minutes after I got there. Turns out they had gone to the wrong street looking for our house.

After that kind of rough start, the meal pick up went really smoothly. It was about 11 when the person I was going to ride with showed up to pick up the meals she was delivering. After we got out to the area she was delivering in, I realized that we were almost to the southwestern edge of the county—practically halfway to my mother’s house!

We delivered the meals, and I took some pictures of some very appreciative senior citizens. It was hard not to feel awkward and intrusive about doing it, but the meal recipients were all very gracious about it.

After the last delivery, I called Keith and told him where I was and told him to head on down the highway. I figured if he grabbed me where I was, then I wouldn’t be making half the trip twice! I convinced the delivery volunteers (a former co-worker and good friend) to drop me off at an open McDonalds. A little while later, Keith picked me up and we were off!

We had forgotten to put the flowers in the car, so we stopped at a roadside vendor and got another bunch. I wanted a more interesting drive, so we eschewed the interstate for the cross-country route. Several little towns and state roads later, we were pulling up into my mom’s.

She had fixed Morningstar Farms vegetarian chix patties for us, but otherwise we had the traditional meal. She also left the meat seasonings out of most of the dishes, so we could eat them as well. And it was a grand feast!

We stayed and talked for a few hours after the meal. Mom showed me some new stuff in her backyard, and we played with her dogs. When it started getting close to dark, we left.

I was so tired that I pretty much crashed out as soon as we got home. Had to get some rest before the big Black Friday extravaganza!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Theory: Low Content Mode is better than No Content Mode.

Corollary: When you don’t contribute that much to whatever sense of collective exchange the blogosphere-thingy is supposed to foster, then it doesn’t matter what you post.

Related Axiom: Sometimes, it’s good to do stuff for your own purposes, even if no one else really understands it.

In other words, thanks for your indulgence of my YouTube abuse this week. I feel better now. And, so far, the only casualty seems to be Roger’s respect for me, which I’m hoping got a bit of a boost from some music recommendations I made for him.

I know I’ve mentioned this before, but I admire folks like Mike, Roger, Kevin and Bully, who can consistently put out such amazing content day after day in their blogs. I’m just not made of that kind of stuff.

Some updates from my last pissy post:

The never-ending work project might actually be wrapping up. At least for now. I haven’t done any new drafts since number 13, several days ago. The presentations are nearly planned, and the powers that be are talking about what I’ll be working on next.

The interview was for the wrong position at the wrong time. I think I’ll be staying put for now and hoping that isn’t a mistake.

The surprise return thing at work turned out okay, with no major catastrophes. Several people told me that it was obvious I hadn’t worked done a lot of major work on the project, because it lacked the little touches my stuff usually has—the kinds of things you don’t notice when they’re there but that make the whole thing work so smoothly that you notice when they’re not. It’s nice to know my work is appreciated.

Collectively, we made 500 dollars at the yard sale. Our friend Sharron was top dog with 150. Keith and I were next with 90, which went up to 124 when we made a run to Half-Price Books with the leftover books and CD’s. All told we sold probably 75% of the stuff that was in the yard when we started, which is a pretty good sell through, considering the place was PACKED! Keith and I only brought four things back home, which thrills me to no end. I did spend 23 dollars at the sale buying other people’s stuff, but it was worth it. I got a two-albums-in-one Smurf hardcover book, every CD from the Donnas that I didn’t have, a couple of sweaters, some containers for Christmas goodies, an old Nativity set, and a bizarre cow-pig thing that I’m going to give to my mother.

Every year, I take my camera, and end up being too busy to take pics. This year was no exception. Sigh!

Fall has finally fallen here, thank god! It was still in the 90’s last week. Ugh! Today, I wore a jacket for the first time, which is awesome!

We’re going camping this weekend, so I’ll be offline until Sunday evening.

Hopefully to come: a couple more yard sale stories from the summer, a couple of concert reviews, and some other stuff.

The Library book sale is in two weeks!
Yay! It’s one of my favorite sales of the year. For the past couple of years, I’ve found several graphic novels there—some of them brand new, non-circulated, with no library markings on them. And they’ve dropped their prices some this year. Should be fun!

And one last bit of YouTubery--John Eddie:

Monday, October 08, 2007

Look! No real content! Wheeee!

Actually, this is Bully's fault. After watching the Julie Brown video in this post, I ended up doing some stream of consciousness searching on the old YouTube, resulting in this excessively self-indulgent bit of blog abuse. You have been warned.

Belinda Carlisle



Leads to Go-Gos doing the Ramones.



Leads to Kasey Chambers because there is no music post without some Americana content in these parts.



Leads to Tracey Ullman doing a song I find myself humming at all kinds of odd moments.



Leads to one of the wilder kd lang moments. I remember watching this performance with the first guy I was ever head-over-heels in love with. He didn't get it or her. I should have taken that as a sign.



Leads to my favorite lesbian folksinger Phranc singing about her favorite lesbian tennis star. The second guy I was ever head-over-heels in love with introduced me to Phranc. He talked me into buying one of her albums (Folksinger) on the spontaneous, wildly romantic adventure we took to Chicago, which oddly enough spelled the end for our relationship.



Leads back to Julie Brown. (Hi, Bully!)



Leads to the Runaways.



Leads to the Divinyls doing that song.



Leads to the Indigo Girls, a group that I introduced to the man I've been head-over-heels in love with for the past fifteen or so years. Now, I'm wondering why it's the lesbian acts that are my relationship benchmarks. You all should be glad I resisted the urge to go for the overwrought, over-blown Melissa Etheridge stuff that I used to get over guy #1.



Leads to Shivaree.



Leads to Rilo Kiley like the talking leads to touching. Soon there is no mystery left and we're all just portions for foxes.



Leads to the Ditty Bops.



Leads to Corday (and something for the super-hero fans)



And ends up with Sam Phillips, which is where I usually end up when I'm in a mood like this.



And with that, Good Night!

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Life Stinks and So Do I...

...at blogging, that is. At least right now.

I've been saddled with one of those work projects that in theory should be really simple and should have been wrapped up weeks ago, but in reality drones on and on endlessly as the people I'm submitting the work to keep changing their minds on what they want. This morning I turned in Draft 11 and this afternoon, Draft 12. Yet despite their inability to finalize anything, they want me to schedule roll out meetings and create the presentations for said meetings. The scheduling part is easy, but it's really difficult to out together a presentation about something that isn't finalized yet!

The whole thing is really getting me down and sucking the life right out of me.

I have another interview next week, but I've had so many this year that haven't panned out that I don't have much hope at all for this one.

And then, something that I thought I had gotten out from under at work popped back up in my life with a vengeance and I haven't been able to give it enough attention, which is going to make next week really difficult for me.

And since no one wants to read about me droning on about shit like this, it's probably for the better that I'm just coming home and vegging out on the couch, instead of trying to blog.

On the bright side, our yard sale is this weekend. If you're in the Louisville area, drop by. We've got tons of cool stuff. I'll try to get some pictures.

Oh yeah, and I got linked by the fine folks at Yard Sale Bloodbath, which totally made my day!

More later when I can write without whining.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Fair Week: Produce

Of course there's more to the fair than the pigs and sheep. The produce exhibits are another place we always try to go. Until we started gardening, I went because it brought back good memories of my grandmothers and their gardens. Now that we're growing stuff, I also like to compare what's on exhibit with our own.

Now, these would make lots of yummy salsa!




Some large melons. How large?



Seriously large!



I thought this pair of squash looked cute for some reason I can't quite explain.




What a lovely collection of gourds!


You may think that these are large pumpkins....


....but this is the largest pumpkin!



I'm not kidding!




It's just not the Kentucky Fair until you see the bluegrass:


And finally, I'll leave you with my new favorite phrase, courtesy of one of the category tags:


Missing Townes

We watched Be Here to Love Me, the documentary about the late Townes Van Zandt, one of the greatest songwriters this country has ever produced. (And one I can relate to a lot sometimes.) And, of course, once I get Townes in my heads, he's there for a while, so you all get to have some of him too.

This is a clip from the Austin City Limits tribute episode, which featured artists who were friends of Townes and those who had recorded his songs. This segmentt features Emmylou Harris duetting with Steve Earle and Willie Nelson on the Townes songs she made famous, If I Needed You and Pancho and Lefty. I consider Pancho to be one of the greatest songs ever recorded.

If you ever get the chance to catch this ACL in re-run on PBS, do it. It popped up here again a couple of years ago. It also features Lyle Lovett and Nanci Griffith, among others. I keep hoping that New West will release this one as part of the fantastic series of ACL videos they've been doing. They missed a truly fabulous opportunity by not doing it in January to coincide with the 10th anniversary of Townes' death.




If you haven't seen Be Here to Love Me yet, I highly recommend it. Here's the trailer:



Fair and Sales later!

PS to New West: You're also waaaaaay overdue to do an Emmylou Harris video release!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

True Tales of Yard Sales: Two Bucks!

There was a yard sale listed on Craigslist several Saturdays ago that included comics in the listing. The listing said it started at 8, so we made plans to start the weekly run of yard sales and errands there.

Having sold quite a bit of my own collection at our yard sales, I’ve gotten to know the other geeks in town who hit sales looking for comics. There are two or three of them for whom the mere mention of the word “comics” will just about guarantee their presence. And they tend to be the most annoying kind of yard salers—the early birds!


For those of you not up on the parlance, an “early bird” is one who shows up at a sale before the advertised start time—often while set up is still going on. They’re typically dealers of one kind or another trying to cherry pick the best stuff before anyone else gets there. Collectors tend to be early birds as well, and the specific mention of something like comics (or salt/pepper shakers or oven mitts or manhole covers) can bring them out. There are also folks who show up early just because they’re yard sale junkies and the thought that someone else might find something cool before they do drives them nuts.


Many times ads will say “No Early Birds” in an attempt to try and stem the tide, but it usually doesn’t work. What are you going to do? Shooting them isn’t legal, after all. Plus, they do have something you want, namely money, which they want to give you in exchange for your unwanted junk. So early birds usually win.


I find them so annoying at our own sales that I try not to be one whenever possible. Yes, I do want the money, but it’s hard to get everything set up and ready for the rest of the day when you’ve got people going through your boxes before you can get them unpacked. And I want to make money (and get rid of crap) all day, which means having a good set-up from the start.

Nevertheless, when there’s comics involved, I bend my own rules just a bit. Technically, I won’t early bird, but I will try to get there right at the advertised opening time.
Like Isaid before, it’s been a surprising year for comics at sales. This one was like the third or fourth listing that specifically mentioned having comics, and I’ve come across small lots of them at a few other sales. Granted, my collecting net is drawn so tightly these days that the chances of finding something that falls in my target range* is pretty slim, especially at an affordable price.

Still, the thrill of the hunt
is part of the game, and I cannot resist the call, so at 8:00 we were sitting in front of the house looking at a bunch of empty tables. That’s empty as in “not set up,” as opposed to “all sold out.” Not only that, there was no one in sight, and no sign of life, motion, or activity inside the house. In other words, a clear violation of Prime Yard Sale Rule #1: BE READY AT YOUR ADVERTISED START TIME!! You’re totally set up for failure if you don’t. Even the most diehard “gotta buy someone else’s junk cheap” yard sale junkie is not going to wait for you to haul your ass out of bed and start dragging stuff out. I know I certainly won’t!


On the upside, if the comic book geek-hawks had been there before me, they would have seen the same empty tables and gone on. We decided to hit a couple of other sales in the area and then come back. Which we did about an hour and a half later to find Spicoli from Fast Times at Ridgemont High slowly hauling stuff out of the house and stacking it on the tables. Suddenly, it all made sense—the Craigslist ad, the late start, everything.



At this point, it’s well after the announced start time. Stuff is still in boxes. There are no comics in sight. Honestly, I started to feel a bit sorry for Spicoli. He’s not going to unload much stuff or make much cash at this rate. Still, he’s friendly enough, so we ask him about the comics. He vanishes into the house for several minutes, during which another couple comes up and starts looking at stuff. They even ask me how much stuff costs, like it’s our sale.


Now, I’m not holding much hope for the comics. The signs are all pointing to a box full of stuff I wouldn’t touch with a ten foot pole, but since we did ask and he did go to get them we hang around until he gets back. Eventually, he comes out of the house with a long box and plops it down on the table. I take a look inside and confirm my worst fears. It’s half full of mid-to-late 90’s X-men related titles. Sigh!


In the meantime the guy that came up while we were waiting asks Spicoli how much the videos are. “
Two bucks!” is the answer. I decide to at least be polite and thumb through the box before leaving. While I’m looking, this conversation takes place: Other customer: “Will you take fifty cents** for this CD rack?” Spicoli: “I was kinda hoping to get two bucks for it!”

Well, much to my surprise, I find these in the back of the box:




That’s a few Simpsons comics, a Simpsons trade, along with an oddly incongruous pair of Silver Age comics: an issue of Mandrake the Magician and Strange Adventures 197.


Now, I’ll read the Simpsons stuff every so often, but it’s not anything I’m wild about. I got them mainly because I really didn’t want to leave empty-handed after all the wait. I figured they’d be fun reads and then I could dump ‘em at Half-Price Books and sell the trade to my LCS. The other two were right up my alley, but I was a little afraid Spicoli might be asking more for them than I wanted to pay. Nothing like a beat-up old comic to give someone visions of impending wealth, after all.***

Still nothing ventured, nothing gained. So I hand him my small stack and asked what he wants for them. He looked through them and said “How about
two bucks?” So I hand him two ones, thank him, and Keith and I turn to leave. As we are walking off, we hear the following exchange with the other customer:

Customer: “How much is this?”

Spicoli: “
Two bucks!

We get in the car, and Keith says, “Well, we know how much his favorite brand of beer costs.”


It was kind of like wandering into that Subway commercial where everything at the yard sale is $2.69 (including the cat) because that’s what the daily special at Subway costs. (I tried to find a video clip of it, but no luck.)


*Eddie’s target range=weird, wonderful, obscure, or somewhat esoteric. There’s a post in that description that’s dying to be written. Now isn’t the time, though.


**Yes, he really offered fifty cents for a nice tall CD rack that would hold at least 200 discs. Cheap bastard!

***A phenomenon that’s way too common at yard sales and thrift stores, unfortunately.

Fair Week: Piggies!


Pigs napping.


BIG pig napping.


BIG pig privates!


Poop! (Remind me not to wear sandals to the animal barn again!)

And now, here's to your health! (All these years I've been going to the fair,
this is the first time I've ever seen a sign like this.)

Must have.....

Cannot believe this slipped under my radar:



But this drops on the 18th and there ain't no way I'm missing it:


Info and some song samples available here.

This has been your Americana-booster moment for today. I'm running late, so the Fair Week posting will be going up tonight along with the Yard ale Week posting.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

True Tales of Yard Sales: I Don't Give a Damn!

A Drama in One Act

Scenario:
Our intrepid heroes, Eddie and Keith, are driving through their neighborhood one Saturday morning en route to yet another yard sale. As usual they are engrossed in conversation.

E: I wonder why there aren’t that many yard sales in our neighborhood?

K: Would we go if there were?

E:
Of course! Got to support the local folks, you know.


Suddenly, they come upon a sale not too far from their house.


K:
Should we stop?

E:
Do you want to?

K:
It’s up to you.

E:
Got to support the local folks, you know.


The yard is empty, except for tables full of stuff for sale. No one else is in sight. No home owner. No yard sale proprietor. No one.


Suddenly, from within the house, a very loud, very enraged voice booms out:
“You can’t fucking hit someone with that! What the fuck is wrong with you?"

This is followed by an equally loud, equally enraged voice:
“I don’t give a damn! I’ll do it if I fucking want to!”

A dialogue of sorts ensues.


VLVE Voice:
I’ve got customers out there.

ELEE Voice: I don’t give a damn!

VLVE:
You need to act right!!

ELEE: I’ll do whatever I fucking feel like.

At this point, a small woman comes out on the porch and says:
“If you have any questions, just let me know.”

She is apparently oblivious to the fact that our leading men are standing there with their mouths hanging open in astonishment. She goes back in the house and the drama continues:


VLVE (who is in actuality the small woman):
I said you can’t fucking do that.

ELEE:
I don’t give a damn! I’ll do what I fucking want!


This goes back and forth a few more times, then the small woman comes back out on the porch and says:
“You have to excuse her. She’s young and kind of messed up. You know.”

She’s still oblivious to the fact that our heroes have expressions on their faces akin to those people have upon landing on other planets. She goes back in, and the fun ensues once more.


VLVE:
I said I’ve got customers out there, dammit! Keep your goddam voice down! (Said without a change from the previous volume and completely without any sense of irony whatsoever.)

ELEE:
I don’t give a damn! You can’t fucking tell me what to do!


Eddie (grabbing Keith by the arm):
Let’s go before they get the guns out!

K:
I want to see how much this is.

E:
It’s broken. It’s ugly. It’s dirty. You don’t want it. We don't need it. I’ll buy you a new one. Come on, now, before they start shooting!

K: What about supporting the local folks?

E: I didn't mean the crazy local folks!


K (as they drive off): Well, now we know why there aren’t more sales in our ‘hood!

CURTAIN

Fair Week: Caped Crusader!

I'm Baaaaaaaa-tman!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

And Now....Yard Sale Week!

It’s been a fun summer for yard sales. It usually is, but what makes this one different is three things: camping stuff, comics, and practical yard stuff.

The camping stuff is probably the wildest of the three. Earlier this summer, Keith decided he wanted to start camping on a semi-regular basis. Within a month, he’d set himself up with three tents* of varying sizes, an air mattress, two sleeping bags and a ton of various outdoor cooking and other camping implements. All purchased at yard sales. All in excellent condition. And all for less than a hundred bucks total.

In terms of comics, it’s been a plentiful summer for sure. There have been more yard sale listings than I can ever remember that mention comics, plus a whole lot of sales that I’ve wandered upon with a small stack of comics on the table or a couple of gn’s for a couple of bucks. Not that everyone of these sales had something I wanted, but it’s fun to see. When I was a kid, I used to see and buy comics at yard sales all the time. It’s kind of a nostalgic kick to see so many of them this year.

The selection has ranged from the older couple with two boxes of old DC 80 page giants graded and priced accordingly to the dudes—yes, there have been more than one—with a long box stuffed with dozens of copies of one 90’s “hot” book or another. The saddest one was the dude with a long box full of Adventures of Superman 500’s still in the polybags. Judging by the sign on the box, he’d started out trying to unload them for a buck a throw. By the time we got there, he’d given up on that, tried 50 cents each, given up on that, and was down to a quarter a piece. And the box was still totally full. It was kind of sad. Not only were the things not going to put the kids through college, they're not even going to leave the garage!

My take has been some manga, a few gn’s, and a great stash of old Treasure Chests, plus a few single issues here and there. It’s not the proverbial stash of golden age DC’s some little old lady found in her attic, but it’s been enough to keep things fun and interesting. I've got a couple of stories about a couple of these finds I'll be sharing this week.

Practical yard stuff actually brings a utilitarian bent to the whole yard saling endeavor--something we can actually use around the house. In other words, it helps us justify checking out people's old junk every weekend. I've picked up some nice planters, a plant stand, a wooden chest I'm using as a mini potter's shed, and a half barrel planter, for about twenty bucks total.

Gotta love the yard sales, folks!

*Tent usage varies based on the campgrounds he’s going to, who’s going with him and how much hiking he might do.

It's Fair Week and It's All About the Animals!

Our first stop at the Fair is always the Animal Barn. Since we didn't get to go until the last weekend this year, most of the animals were gone or leaving. Still, I did get a few shots.

I took these two for Bully:






And then, it was on to the sheep:


Sheep snuggling.

Sheep snacking.

Sheep on parade.

Sheep incognito.

But why is there such anti-sheep discrimination in this world??

Monday, September 10, 2007

A Plethora of Miscellanea! (Some Happy, Some Sad)

Yesterday was National Pet Memorial Day. In honor of that, I present to you Basil (who died two years ago this month) doing one of the things she did best, namely sleeping:



And Brianna, whom we lost five years ago in July:

They're still very much missed!



I added a buncha stuff to my sidebar the other day.

In the Why Didn’t I Do This Sooner? Department, I added The ISB to the comics section, along with Batfatty, and When Fangirls Attack!

In the They’re Both Such Nice Guys That It’s Not Surprising That They Know Each Other Department, I added Joe Fludd’s new Quantum Blog, which I learned about from the inestimable Roger Green. It’s always kind of wild to find out folks that I know online know each other. If you are at all interested in the Fantastic Four, you have to check out Joe’s blog. I know for a fact that he has been officially named the world’s greatest fan of the world’s greatest super-team!

And finally, in the Dorian Wright Is My Hero! Department, I added a link to Mr. Wright’s newest project, Comics Gays.

And since there’s more to life than comics, I created a section for yard saling and thrifting links, then proceeded to add Yard Sale Bloodbath and Yard Sale Queen.

I’ve got some music links and local links to add, but I ran out of time the other day. Maybe I’ll get to that this week.








A great big hunk of slightly belated thanks to Greg Burgas! In response to a comment I left at his blog a while ago about the band The Horse Flies, he sent me a copy of their Gravity Dance CD! Many thanks, Greg, for the unexpected musical treat!



Musical news that makes me really sad: Kentucky fave Zoë Speaks has called it quits (although they will be releasing one last CD) and Nickel Creek is taking an indefinite hiatus. The saddest part of all this sad news? I just found out about it! Not only am I bummed about the music, I’m also way out of touch!



We performed a cat rescue this weekend for Zeppelin, who had taken up residence in our front yard for the last several weeks. He’s an indoor cat who had been abandoned after his owner was evicted. The new residents of his old house fed him from time to time but wouldn’t let him in and he never quite understood why. We started regularly leaving out food and water for him, so he moved into our yard.

He’s just a total sweetheart and obviously needed to be someone’s indoor cat. (For, one thing he’d been declawed.) The stress of being outdoors was starting to tell on him, especially in the heat we’ve had this summer.

As worried as we were about him, we just could not take another one in. Three is the most we can handle, and I think Bennie would have gone on strike if had we introduced another boy into the house! She just wants to live out her old age in peace.

So our good friend Sharron got an unexpected furry birthday gift. Now, we didn’t just dump him on her. We felt her out on the subject of a new cat and invited her over to meet him. We figured she’d fall in love with him, and we were right. (I told you he was a sweetheart.) I picked up food and water dishes at a yard sale to top the deal off. She says he’s made himself right at home in her place. Like I said, he badly needed and wanted to be indoors.



Musical news that makes me happy: Hoots and Hellmouth will be here in a few weeks! Also, the new Linda Thompson CD, Versatile Heart is really good. She effortlessly shifts from traditional folk tunes to honky tonk weepers to sensitive singer-songwriter stuff, all in her incredibly expressive voice. It’s just a tad on the depressing side, though, but that suits me just fine these days.








I’m going to try and expand my blogging horizons this week by doing my first ever theme week. In fact, I’ll actually be doing two theme weeks at the same time. The morning posts will be dedicated to one of my favorite summer past-times, The Fair! The good old Kentucky State Fair just wrapped up a couple of weeks ago, and I’ve finally finished sorting through my pics enough to have some ready to post.

Then, in the evenings, I’ll be adding some posts about another of my favorite summer (and spring and fall) past-times: Yard Sales! It’s been a really fun year for buying other people’s junk, including lots of comics and comics related stuff.

Stay tuned for all the fun!

Thursday, August 30, 2007

The Giant Floating Head knows the score


I'm not entering Kevin's showing, because this is a personal in-joke, but I do thank him for the opportunity to drag it out again. It's been that kind of week.


Do you really want to know this stuff????

So Lefty tagged me with that “Tell 8 Things about Yourself” meme the other day, like I’m just going to drop everything head to the computer and start typing away or something. So, just to show him a thing or two, I waited a couple of days. I’m ornery that way, sometimes. (Just kidding, Chris!)

Anyway, here are the rules:

- Each player starts with eight random facts about themselves.
- Those who are tagged need to write their own blog about their eight facts and post these rules.
- At the end of the post, choose some people to get tagged and list their names.

I don’t do the tagging thing, so I’ll be disregarding the last one, but I think I can handle the rest of it. (It seems to me that Roger tagged me with something similar ages ago too. Maybe I should check that out.)

So let’s see…eight random facts about me:

1. Foods I need to stay away from when I’m trying to lose weight: potato chips, chocolate chip cookies, pop tarts, french fries, sugared cereals, pizza, and those ice cream bars with the chocolate coating on the outside and vanilla ice cream on the inside. I find it very hard to have any of these foods in any sort of moderation whatsoever, so I have to abstain. Except, of course, for a very rare and occasional splurge.

2. When I was in college, I was a student summer missionary every year. I worked in the “four corners” of the lower 48 states: Lake Placid, NY; San Diego, CA; Miami FL; and Seattle, WA. I caught a lot of flack from my friends over the Miami and San Diego assignments, since they thought I’d be in for a cushy vacation at Baptist Student Union expense. However, I worked my butt off in both places. So what if I came back from both assignments with the best tans I’ve ever had?

3. At one time I was the news editor for a lesbian magazine. Seriously!

4. My life travels in very weird circles sometimes. When I was in college, I dropped a major in math, yet ended up working in the math department as a senior. My first job of any substance in Louisville was for a non-profit, which I left in 1990, only to return in 1997. When I left the second time, some of the folks there told me that they would be waiting for me to come back again. Taking my current job brought me back into a building where I worked in the mid-nineties. Same floor, even! Different agency, though. I’m tantalizingly close to having another of those circles happen to me again. I can’t say anything until it happens, but keep your fingers crossed for me. Please.

5. When I was a kid, I used to have frequent throat infections. When I was sick (which was a lot of the time), I had a hard time swallowing anything, so I lived on mashed potatoes and apple sauce. As a result, I was a skinny little booger. Then I had my tonsils removed when I was about eight. Cleared up the problem! And I’ve been a tubbo ever since. Applesauce is still one of my favorite foods, though. My grandmother used to keep a jar in her cabinet all the time, just in case I came by.

6. I have read over 50 books so far this year. Over the weekend, I finished three. Reading has always been a stress relief for me, so I guess that says something about the way 2007 is going for me.

7. When my mother was a senior in high school, she won the history award, which was one of the few competitive senior academic awards at her school. Everyone who wanted a shot at the award had to take a test and write an essay.

When I was a senior in high school, I won the history award, which was one of the few competitive senior academic awards at my school. Everyone who wanted a shot at the award had to take a test and write an essay.

8. I have shared various parts of my life with 16 different cats. Three of them have been neighborhood-roaming cats who made my yard one of their usual stops. (In fact, there’s one of them right now who stops by our front door every day for a hand out. His name is Zeppelin. The kid down the street named him.) One of them kind of came with a house we rented when I was a teenager. The first one that we ever had as an official pet was named Kitty. He ran off after we moved and we never found him. The next one was called Kitty Jr., because he looked like Kitty. The third one was called Black Kitty, because he was, well, black. My brother was responsible for all three of those names.

Okay, those are my thrilling and obscure eight facts. Anything else you want to know?

Saturday, August 11, 2007

It's Salsa Time!


Yes, it's another batch of yummy homemade salsa! This time it's black bean and corn salsa! Starring our home grown tomatoes!

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Eddie Mitchell Picked a Peck of Peppers!


And I did it last night.

If this heat wave doesn't break, the peppers will be about the only thing left in the garden. My flowers are nearly all dead. Record highs every day this week so far, and tomorrow's supposed to be no different. There's a TON of stuff I want to do in the yard, but it's just too hot to do more than the bare necessities.