duck-shaped pain

Where I Let The Archetypes Speak Through Me

Hunting woodpeckers one day, ordering $2000 in plastic 3-ring binders the next.[1] Some people claim that what they love about their jobs is that "Every day is different you don't know what's going to happen." Not me. Some days I'd just like something sort of predictable. Not as much as I'd like a desk and chair of my own, of course, but knowing what I was in for would make each day a lttle better.

For the first time in recent memory, I don't have anything work-related to do at home (or, to be truthful, anything work-related to bring home, leave on the table, and occasionally think about during Relaxing Beer Time). The overworked middle-aged guy deep down inside of me would claim, "Hey! I don't know what to do with myself!" The rest of me, desperate and hellbound for sloth, feels like beating the crap out of Inner Middle-Aged Dad, I tell you. I plan to bathe and drink beer and read and stay up late. I could do so much more, I suppose, but I'm sort of broke.

Here's a complete mystery, at least to me. Maybe someone out there can explain this behavior. Last year, I bought my dad a shirt at a yard sale. A nice, heavy, long-sleeved polo shirt with the Colorado Avalanche (my dad is a huge hockey fan) logo embroidered on it. It had never been worn someone received it as a gift, it didn't fit, and they weren't able to take it back and, in fact, still had the tags on it. I thought he would like it, but it's been sitting there, hanging up in the laundry room for a year. All he wears are a) long-sleeved polo shirts and b) hockey t-shirts, so this shirt isn't some brave experiment for him.

I get the idea that he hasn't worn it because it has that "used" aura about it. I don't understand it myself, but I've been assuming he didn't want to hear anything secondhand. That is, until the other day. He found a shirt laying in THE MIDDLE OF THE ROAD near the college he teaches at. It was a green sweatshirt which had been run over a bunch of times, had tire marks all over it, yet he brought it home, proclaimed it to be perfectly useful, washed it and has since worn it a bunch of times. Unbelievable.

Damn, I make fine chicken. Personal meat-eating issues aside, [2] you cannot beat my chicken. I take a chicken or disembodied chicken parts, place them in a roaster pan, cover with foil, and place in a 350-degree oven for 90 minutes. Meanwhile, I chop up some garlic (2-3 cloves), mash it with salt with a mortar and pestle, and then gradually add into the garlic mush some dried thyme, dried basil and black pepper (dried handles the mashing/grilling process better, I've found). When all ingredients are mashed together well, place in a small bowl. Add good olive oil to cover. Light up your favorite grill. I use a gas grill, but I bet a charcoal grill or stovetop grill would also work okay. Remove chicken it should be done and nearly falling apart. Place on grill, brush skin with olive oil/garlic mixture, and cook just long enough for skin to become crispy. Devour. This is one chicken dish where taking off the skin is completely unacceptable, sorry.

I continued to listen to more Songs About Fucking today, on the wya to work and everywhere else I drove today. I didn't listen to all of it, because I got stuck listening to "Precious thing" over and over again. I was trying to think of ways to write about how much I like that song, but the only phrases that could make their way through my caffeine-addled yet foggy head were things like "It's rockin'" and "Niiiiice." - the things you generally only hear when listening to someone else describe periods of intense adolescent Van Halen appreciation. I felt like an eejit.

[1] I know you're not really asking, but that's about 100 really big, heavy-duty binders. I don't know what they're for, either.

[2] Not your personal meat-eating issues, mine. I keep wavering in the breeze on this issue. I'd like to tell you it's because of some ethical dilemma on my part, but the truth is: a) I don't always like the way meat tastes, b) vegetables are cheaper, c) chicken aside, I suck at cooking meat and d) vegetarian cookbooks are more fun, except for the ones that lecture you a lot. But since I'm cooking for others who do not share my dilemma, meat it is.

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