Sunday, August 26th, 2012

image of religious theoremA guy shows up at the farmer’s market every week, sets up a table with lots of pamphlets and a backboard heavy with illustrations of dinosaurs and cave men, and props this sign on the sidewalk. I really don’t want to talk to him about evolution because I’m not an evolutionary scientist and, even if I was, I don’t think I would usually go to the farmer’s market carrying armloads of my published work, looking for a debate with a creationist. Assuming he’s a creationist.

But I’m perplexed by what he’s trying to say with this sign. It seems to start out with the first two posits of a theorem: “Evolution is religion. Evolution is science fiction.” If this is a theorem, then the last line should read: “Therefore, religion is science fiction,” right? Which would be true in the case of L. Ron Hubbard’s followers, but this guy doesn’t seem to be preaching Scientology. He seems to want to debunk evolution.

If debunking evolution as science fiction were his goal, then wouldn’t it make more sense to say something like, “Evolution is imaginary; Science fiction is imaginary, therefore, evolution is science fiction.” Even if he left off the final line and left the rest up to the reader, it would make a little more sense that what he’s got there now, don’t you think? I guess the part that confuses me is, how does the first line, “Evolution is religion,” even make sense? How is evolution a religion? Is Darwin supposed to be a god or a prophet? Does he think evolutionary scientists pray to Darwin? Is Darwin supposed to save us for ever and ever, amen?

I’d ask, but I want to be able to keep going back to the farmer’s market, munch on scones and people-watch without being drawn into yet another conversation about religion, because that would get old in a hurry.

| 8:18 am CDT
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Saturday, October 1st, 2011

It has been a day.

Everything was fine to start with. Morning coffee with the morning news, one sucked, the other didn’t. While B got ready to go to the farmer’s market, I threw a load of dirty clothes into the wash machine and cranked it up, then went about the rest of my morning chores: Filling the magical cat food machine that automatically dispenses kibble three times a day, then tromping down stairs to sift the crap out of the kitty litter, my favoritist job in the whole wide world! Yeah, not really, but I have to say that because I’ll blow my brains out if I ever admit to myself that I’m going to spend the next ten to fifteen years of my life sifting cat poop. So I don’t admit it.

The wash machine happened to finish the first cycle and drain the wash water while I was in the basement. The water runs down a pipe that fills up the sink in the basement, and I noticed that the water wasn’t draining. At first I thought it was draining slowly until I went back five minutes later to check on it and found the water hadn’t gone down by as much as a half inch. That’s as bad as not draining at all. Great.

But we had a trip to make to the farmer’s market, so I put it out of my mind and enjoyed walking around cap square with My Darling B. I am her bag bearer. My job is a lot easier since we bought a little cart to hang the bags from. Bag bearing used to pull my arms off but now I just drag the cart around and help her arrange the bags from the hangers. And eat scones. One chocolate chip scone is the price I ask for dragging the cart around all morning. Seems fair to me.

I set to work unclogging the drain as soon as we got back, because we couldn’t wash clothes or use the kitchen sink until it was draining again. I tried the usual tactic of shoving a garden hose down the drain and flushing it out, but that didn’t work very well this time around so I went to the garage and got the sewer snake. I hate using that thing, mostly because of the gunk that’s stuck to it when I pull it out of the sewer. It washes off, but yuck. And yet, even though I jammed twenty feet of coiled stainless steel down the sewer and gave it a good thrashing, the water still backed up in the drain. I don’t know what else to try. It may be time to finally call the professionals. That’s gonna suck.

After I got that mess cleaned up I stripped off all my mucky clothes, then stood in a blistering hot shower for about twenty minutes. I don’t usually go for ultra-hot showers, but after I’ve been splashing around in sewer water I’d like to be boiled. Since that’s not possible, I crank the temp up as hot as I can take it and stand under the shower head until my skin is bright red.

My Darling B had lunch ready when I came out, so we sat down to pulled-pork sandwiches. I had worked up enough of an appetite to wolf down two. Then I napped. I felt as though I deserved it.

My nap reminded me of the time when I was sick and trying to get some sleep in our bedroom while a woodpecker was hammering away at the side of the house. When I woke up, I tromped down stairs again to fetch a can of wood filler from the work shop, went out to the garage to grab an extension ladder, and when around to the side of the house to see about patching the gaping hole the little bastard made in the siding. It was an impressively large hole for such a little bird. He must have been working on it most of the summer. I scooped quite a bit of wood filler into it, patted it flat with a putty knife, filled in a few smaller holes and generally smeared plenty of wood filler all over the patch of siding he appeared to find so tasty, hoping the epoxy would be the ultimate yuckfest that would discourage him from ever coming back.

I had to visit the hardware store to buy some wire staples for a future project, stapling a ground wire to the back of the house where it runs down from the attic to the electric meter. I don’t know what it’s for but I pulled it off the siding last summer and had to yank another part of it off a window frame when I painted all the frames this month. I’m going to staple it back on tomorrow or maybe next weekend, unless another plumbing emergency swallows up most of a day.

And then I played with my toys. If the Justification Police had come around to see what the heck I thought I was doing, I would have pointed at the mucky sewer snake in the pail under the basement sink. I’m still laying track around the return loop at the very end of the Lost Continent Railway, but I’m nearly done. It’s a three-track around a half-circle six feet across. There are six switches and a crossover I had to build myself. In other words, there’s a lot of tiny little fiddly bits to piece together.

Today, for instance, I pieced together several bits of track leading up to a switch. Each bit had to be precisely cut to length so all the bits would fit snugly together. I bought a specially-made tool like a wire cutters that’s supposed to cut through the track easily and leave a flat, clean end, but the one I have does neither. It’s gone dull and I haven’t been able to sharpen it no matter how long or how carefully I work it over with a file. Old-timers used to cut track with a razor saw, but that’s always been a chore for me. One day, when I was desperate to cut some track, I grabbed my Dremel power tool and fitted it with a cutoff wheel. It cut through the rail like butter. I’ve cut rail with the Dremel every since. The only downside is that the friction from using a high-speed power tool makes the rail hot enough to sting my fingers.

The bits of track are held together with track joiners, inventively-named clips that must be tight enough to hold the track ends but loose enough to slide into place. They are, in fact, always, always too tight or too loose. They’re also too long. I usually cut about a third off the end, then trim the tongue off the other end so both ends are flat. I’m not sure what the tongue is supposed to do, but what it ends up doing is pushing the track ends apart, resulting in a lot of cussing. I’m not against cussing, but I am against wasting time.

I cut the track joiners with the Dremel tool, too, and that’s why I have blisters on my fingers tonight. The cutoff wheel makes the tiny track joiners so hot they burn. I’ve tried holding them with pliers, or in a vise, but I can’t make the cut as quickly that way. Speed trumps comfort. Blisters don’t change that equation.

blister | 7:52 pm CDT
Category: daily drivel, entertainment, hobby, LoCo Rwy, Our Humble O'Bode | Tags:
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Saturday, July 2nd, 2011

When the Dane County Farmer’s Market is on capitol square during the summer, every street is lined with stalls where the farmers sell their wares, but every corner is crowded with folding tables where everybody with a petition or an opinion is making their pitch.

This year there’s a new table on the corner at King Street where a devotee of Ayn Rand doggedly makes his case under the hand-lettered sign, “Who is John Galt?” The question I’m dying to ask this guy is, What makes you any different from, say, a guy in a Star Trek uniform touting the genius of Gene Roddenberry, or anybody else who models his whole freaking life on a work of fiction?

fiction | 12:56 pm CDT
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Saturday, April 9th, 2011

Next week, the Dane County Farmer’s Market returns to cap square, so this morning was the last time we could go for breakfast because they only serve while they’re in their winter quarters at the senior center on Mifflin Street. I was sort of hoping for waffles or a big pile of pancakes, but I would’ve been happy with a thick slab of ham and some scrambled eggs. Something simple, filling, and very much plain old farmer food.

I guess they wanted to go out with a bang, though, because they served cheese blintzes, a big pile of greens and veggie hash made from carrots and yams. The cheese blintz was way outside my system’s capacity to handle dairy. They were stuffed full of so much gooey cheese that I could’ve gobbled down a whole bottle of lactase pills and I still would’ve exploded like thousand pounds of gunpowder drenched in gasoline. B tried to save it for later by wrapping it up in a napkin. I forgot to check on it when we got it home; I’m pretty sure it’ll end up a wad of cheese and dough and paper toweling at the bottom of the kitchen wastebasket.

The veggie hash was surprisingly good but the one little dollop I got didn’t make much of a breakfast. Luckily there was plenty of salad. I ate every leaf and stem and wanted more, but there are no seconds, so I tried to satisfy the last of my cravings by wolfing down the dry little cookie they gave us for dessert. Didn’t work. Had to supplement my breakfast with a cookie from Batch Bake House on the way home.

The Last Breakfast | 2:40 pm CDT
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Saturday, March 19th, 2011

Our Saturday morning routine has altered slightly. For months it was: farmer’s market for breakfast & shopping, then co-op for groceries, then book store, then home. But for the past few weeks it’s been: farmer’s market for breakfast & shopping, then march to capitol square chanting “Recall Walker!” and “This is what democracy looks like!” with hoards of angry protesters, then stop at the co-op for groceries, then home. It’s a subtle change, but it seemed significant enough to mention.

I’m impressed that they’re still marching and rallying, to tell you the truth. The rally today wasn’t as big as last week’s, so the rally organizers, whoever they are, don’t seem to have been able to keep the amount of enthusiasm at the levels we’ve seen before. The crowd today filled up the corner of the square facing King Street, but when we walked around the square we didn’t see many people anywhere else on the sidewalk or along the terrace. There was a small knot of people at the top of State Street, but that was it.

My Darling B and I marched with the parade of veterans that gathered on Library Mall at the UW campus up State Street to the square, up Carroll Street and Main Street to the King Street intersection where the rally was held. We wore our old fatigue jackets because we got the impression there’d be a lot of veterans there, and there very well might have been, but only a handful of them wore anything that looked like uniform jackets or fatigue shirts. We sort of stuck out, so much that I was approached by a reporter from the Wisconsin State Journal who wanted to ask me about my impressions of the rally. I was going to tell her no comment, but then I reconsidered and answered her questions. Maybe she’ll quote me accurately and maybe she won’t, but if she doesn’t I’ve got her business card.

Saturday Morning Rally | 4:22 pm CDT
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Sunday, March 13th, 2011

image of rally in Madison WI 3-12-11

My Darling B and I spent all day yesterday in downtown Madison and all we saw was a lousy two hundred thousand union supporters rallying around the capitol! Man, did we feel ripped off!

We started off the day normally enough, washing up and heading into town to stock up our pantry with various and sundry items from the Dane County Farmer’s Market and, while we were there, we filled our bellies with a delicious breakfast: burritos, hash browns and a few leafy greens. Leafy greens might sound a little unusual to those who have not eaten at a farmer’s market. I thought they were at first, too, but after you’ve eaten breakfast at a farmer’s market for a couple years you not only get used to it, you feel a little guilty if you don’t eat your leafy greens, like maybe you’re cheating. “Hiding your leafy greens under the table mat again?” “No, Mom, honest!”

While My Darling B was shopping I had to run down the street to get first aid for an eyeglass emergency. At first I was just going to duck into Dorn’s Hardware to see if they had any of those little screwdrivers you can attach to your keyring. That would’ve been the quickest and easiest way for me to fix my glasses, if Dorn’s had been open, but they were not, so I ran shuffled on down to State Street to an optometrist’s shop on the intersection with Gorham Street. I’m going to give C. G. Schanel & Associates a plug because not only was he the most pleasant optometrist I’ve even dealt with, he didn’t just hand me a screwdriver and leave me to fix it myself. Instead, he took my eyeglasses over to his little workbench, made sure everything was put together and lined up correctly, cleaned off the glasses and handed them back to me at no charge. “Just come back to me when you need glasses,” he said with a big smile. And I will.

State Street was a steady stream of people walking up to capitol hill and by the time got back to the neighborhood where the farmer’s market is held I was starting to worry that I would never find My Darling B in the crowd. I milled around for a bit in the parking lot, then went into the market itself and looked around, but eventually had to admit to myself that I was never going to spot her and, as it turned out, I was right. She was going to spot me. She came out of the ladies’ room just a fraction of a second after I came out of the men’s room and chased me down. So we didn’t have to wade into the mass of people congregating around the square.

The first time we showed up there it must’ve been about ten o’clock. There were already quite a lot of people crowding the sidewalks around the square, so many that they were already filling the street as they walked around in the customary counterclockwise direction. I wonder who started that, and why? Anyway, we milled around for a bit, collecting pro-union buttons and checking out the signs before we were swept up by the crowd and marched hand-in-hand up Carroll Street to the top of the hill where Hamilton intersects at an angle with the square in front of the Inn on the Square. That’s where we backed up to the curb to wait for the tractors.

This was what My Darling B was most interested to see this morning. Farmers brought about two-dozen tractors (and the inevitable manure spreader — that was sort of required, wasn’t it?) to parade around the square. Real farmers. We knew several of them from the farmer’s market. The parade was headed by an old green fire truck and I’m pretty sure I saw Dan Nichols in the bunch that stood on the back shouting, “This Is Grassroots!” The crowd quickly took up the chant and amped it up to a deafening roar.

As the tractors came up Hamilton Street one by one and turned to head down Main Street at a slow crawl the crowd raised a cheer to each one of them, and when a farmer raised a hand in salute or otherwise acknowledged the crowd they were rewarded with a round of “Thank! You! Thank! You! Thank! You!” from the crowd. It was quite a moment.

After the last tractor turned down Main Street the crowd closed in behind it and marched along in the road. I don’t think we got any farther than halfway down the Pinckney side of the square in a half-hour of marching before we decided to mill around some and see what was going on. What we found was mostly a hundred thousand or so people milling around to see what was going on. Various people were making speeches from the platform set up near the base of the stairs on the State Street corner of the square, but we were too cold by that time to stand still and listen to them, and when My Darling B suggested we pop into Merchant’s to warm up a bit I eagerly agreed.

Merchant’s is a relatively new restaurant on the high-visibility corner of Pinckney and Doty, right across the street from Johnny Delmonico’s. We snagged two stools at the bar and, a few moments later, the attention of the bartender to beg him to fortify us against the cold. B was somehow hungry already, and as soon as she said that I was, too, so we split an open-faced sandwich and chased it with our favorite libations, a Hopalicious from Ale Asylum for me and a glass of Malbec for B. With a fresh supply of antifreeze coursing through my veins I was able to take my coat off … thirty or forty minutes later. I was really cold.

While we enjoyed our brunch, demonstrators streamed past the windows, most notably a long line of bright yellow cabs from the Union Cab Company, honking their horns in syncopation with the chant, “This is what democracy looks like!” (an earworm that no one in Madison can get out of their heads these days) and waving hand-made signs from the windows. When the red light at the corner of King Street stopped traffic, cab drivers would pop out of almost ever cab to take photos of the line. You can google “union cab madison wisconsin” and come up with any number of photos of the cabs lined up in the street yourself right now.

As our brunch came to an end we had to decide: go home, or stay to witness The Return of the Wisconsin Fourteen? The wouldn’t make their appearance until three o’clock, so we would have to find something to do for a while. We debated for a little while longer over another round of bellywarmers, just to keep the juices flowing in the cold, don’t you know, then wrapped ourselves up and headed back up to the square. After a quick stop at a book shop where My Darling B searched but was sadly unable to find just the right kind of journal she was looking for, we plowed back into the crowd to see what we could see.

Not much, as it turned out. It was about two-thirty and by this time the square was packed shoulder-to-shoulder with people. I’ve read estimates of the crowd at about one hundred thousand. Pssht. If it was anything less than a quarter million, I’m a greedy union thug. Oh, wait. I am. Well, I still say it was closer to a quarter million, but maybe that’s my uncontrollable need to collectively ask for too much.

And while My Darling B and I were standing on tippy-toe trying to see who was at the podium, the lady next to me nudged me with her elbow and said in a conspiratorial whisper, hooking her thumb at the gentleman standing in my way, “Do you know who that is?” He looked maybe a few years older than me and wore plain denim work clothes. Could’ve been anybody from anywhere in Wisconsin. I turned back to the lady and shook my head no. “That’s Tom Barrett,” she said. Barrett ran against Scott Walker in the gubernatorial election and lost by a narrow margin. I wouldn’t have recognized him if he’d turned around and introduced himself, but many people in the crowd reached out to shake his hand and give him their regards, and after that happened a couple dozen times the crowd itself turned their cameras from the podium to Barret, snapping away and shouting, “Hello, Mister Mayor!” If you can find any of those photos on someone’s Facebook page, you’ll probably see My Darling B and I standing right behind him.

When the Wisconsin Fourteen finally returned, they were literally welcomed by the crowd as returning heroes. The crowd was signing a hymn to their return. I swear I am not making that up. To the strains of God Bless America they marched up the stairs, took their place at the podium, and one by one thanked everyone for everything.

And of course there was Jesse Jackson. I think he stops by every Saturday now to say a prayer. This Saturday he asked us to pray for the people in Japan and even I ducked my head to thank goodness that the friends I had in Japan were okay.

Tony Shalhoub was the Hollywood star this week, a good pick, I thought. You can’t get any more native to Wisconsin than Green Bay, but I say that with a touch of bias, having grown up in Green Bay myself. He brought his sister Amy along because she’s one of those overpaid teachers you keep hearing about.

We began to make our way off the square at maybe four o’clock, cold and exhausted but happy we stayed. Being part of a crowd like that will be a memory that will stick with us for a while.

Oh, just one more thing: Cows.

Tractors. Cows. 14. A Monk. | 10:42 am CDT
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Saturday, January 8th, 2011

Our Saturday morning ritual included breakfast at the farmer’s market, the first one this winter after they moved to the senior center on Mifflin Street. Scrambled eggs, breakfast sausages, toast, mixed vegetables and fresh spinach. We took our trays upstairs where the crowds wouldn’t be so bad and it would be a lot warmer. The ground-floor entrance was pretty much open all the time with the steady stream of people traipsing in and out, allowing the Merry Little Breezes to come in and play, and temps outside were in the teens all morning. If we’d taken a table downstairs, my scrambled eggs would have gone from hot to stone-cold in about three minutes, and my feet would turn blue.

We found a table with a few empty chairs upstairs and the people who were sitting there were just finishing up, so in a few minutes we had the whole table to ourselves until the people who had been in line behind us showed up and asked if they could join us. One of them was from Hawaii.

“You came here from Hawaii?” I asked her. “In January? What were you thinking?” She allowed as to how that wasn’t the very best planning, and that if she were ever to come back it would probably be later in the year, like June.

Another woman in the party told us she came to the farmer’s market every week, same as we did. She was from a bit closer than Hawaii: Middleton, just on the other side of town, and said that she used to ride her bicycle into town every Saturday, spend the morning at the market, then ride back. “That’s about a six- or eight-mile trip, isn’t it?” I asked her. “Pretty good ride!”

“Well, I was a lot younger then,” she noted.

We rounded up some fresh veggies and other food stuffs after we finished breakfast, then stopped along Willy Street on the way home so we could complete our Saturday morning ritual: B ducked into the co-op to pick up a few things for tonight’s dinner, and I cleared an armload of books off the shelves at St. Vinnie’s thrift store.

Instead of going straight home after that we put the shop in Shopko, detouring to the South Towne Mall to see if they sold DVD players. Ours went on the fritz last week and we like watching movies enough that we decided to bite the bullet and buy a new one, figuring we could find a cheap-o model for about a hundred bucks as Shopko. Shows how long it’s been since we’ve bought any kind of electronic gadget (about ten years, we figured out later). DVD players started at about forty bucks, and even those were pretty good. And tiny! “Look at how little it is!” B squealed as if she were cuddling a newborn puppy, holding up a model no bigger than the plastic cases that DVDs are sold in.

Home again, home again, jiggidy-jog, I watched Moon, the Sam Rockwell movie about a guy who’s been working alone on the surface of the moon for three years and is either going crazy, or the victim of a corporate plot. It’s never really clear, and I’m not sure whether or not I liked it. But I finally watched it, a week after I rented it from Bongo Video! After all the late fees I knew I’d be stuck with, I was determined to watch every damned minute of it, even if it sucked. I don’t think it sucked, but I’m not sure what happened and I don’t like that kind of uncertainty. I like my movies a little more blunt. Like almost to the point of trauma. I need to be hit over the head with a plot point in order for it to sink in. Maybe I’ll wake up tomorrow morning and it’ll be a little clearer.

Oh, hell, might as well just spoil the whole thing for you. It’s my blog, and your free will. Stop reading if you don’t want to know what happens.

Rockwell plays Sam Bell, who is working alone on the far side of the moon. That right there seemed pretty improbable to me, so I had trouble suspending disbelief from the start. How would anybody be expected to work alone for three whole years? Not just alone, but on the far side of the moon, cut off from everyone else in every way, physically and emotionally isolated. Utterly. Cut. Off. It just doesn’t seem likely.

Bell had a robot sidekick named Gerty, voiced by Kevin Spacey. I have to say it would be just plain awesome to have a robot voiced by Kevin Spacey in my house, but if all I had to talk with for three years was a robot, I’d go completely ga-ga in very short order no matter whose voice was coming out of it. A robot companion is the most sure-fire way I can think of to drive a guy batshit crazy in a movie about working alone on the far side of the moon.

The movie opened showing Bell with Charles Manson hair and a beard, just in case you didn’t get the idea right off the bat that he was a little crazy. His one job is to get in a truck and drive out to one of four automated mining machines whenever they gather enough helium-3 for him to send back to earth. Everything else about the operation is automated. All he does it drive up behind the mining machines through a hail of rocks, like that makes any sense, drive his truck up on to the machine’s tailgate, hop off, pick up a tin can full of helium-3, take it back to base and put it on a sled that’s launched into space on a rail gun. The Kevin Spacey robot even tells him it can do the job but he does it anyway. So why Bell is there, I don’t know.

One day, he sees a woman in the space station. Obviously she shouldn’t be there. A day or two later while he’s driving out to pick up some helium-3 from a mining machine, he sees the woman again standing on the surface of the moon. This is obviously a little distracting and while his mind is wandering the mining machine runs over his truck.

Bell wakes up in the infirmary. He doesn’t remember the crash so he doesn’t ask the robot, which hangs from the ceiling on a steel pipe, how he got there, but it was the first question that popped into my mind. In the next scene he catches the robot talking to his corporate overlords using his video phone, when all along he’s been told that the direct satellite link is down because of a solar flare. Since this is a crucial plot point, I have to ask: Why would a robot talk on the phone with a human? Doesn’t it have a wireless card or whatever they’re using for a direct router connection in the future? Why would it say anything aloud instead of, I don’t know, texting? It doesn’t make any sense … unless Bell is crazy and imagines this part.

Eventually, Bell is well enough to get back to work, but the robot won’t let him go outside. Bell orders it to let him out and the robot tells him he’s not allowed to let Bell out, so Bell plays a trick that is so obvious that nobody, especially not a robot that presumably knows everything that’s going on everywhere in the station, would fall for it. The robot falls for it and lets Bell out.

Bell drives his truck out to the wrecked mining machine and finds another Bell trapped in another pickup truck. Bell One brings Bell Two back to the moon station and puts him in the infirmary. For the middle third of the movie they nervously pace around each other, trying to figure out if this is craziness or what. At this point the movie was still an interesting psychological drama about how a person goes crazy in isolation, especially when Bell Number Two started jabbering about a bizarre corporate plot to run the helium-3 mining project using cloned human slaves.

But then the story seemed to take a wide left turn and became a story about a bizarre corporate plot to run a mining project using clone slaves! Bell One and Bell Two discover a vast underground room with thousands of cloned Bells! And the robot confirms that he’s a clone with implanted memories. Of course, this could all have been a paranoid fiction made up by the crazy mind of Bell … until Bell Two hatches a plan that involves waking up another Bell clone, which he does all on his own, isolated from Bell One.

Once Bell Two and Bell One are acting independently, it’s not about being crazy any more. Bell One watches Bell Two escape the station by using the rocket sled that delivers helium-3 to Earth. Bell Two is show escaping. Bell Three is still on the station.

So he wasn’t crazy! Oh, maybe a little, but the Manson beard was obviously a case of classic misdirection! The imaginary girl was a red herring! He wasn’t crazy at all … or was he? Well, shit, I don’t know, and by the time the credits rolled I didn’t care much anymore, to tell you the truth. So I guess the movie sucked after all. I would’ve liked the psychological drama, but the crazy clone conspiracy wasn’t all that interesting. Too bad, because I like Sam Rockwell.

Speaking of which, how many movies has Sam Rockwell been bare-assed in his movies? He was absolutely buck naked in Confessions of a Dangerous Mind, again in Charlie’s Angels, and once again he shows off his ass in a shower scene in Moon. Were there any more that you remember?

Eggs For Breakfast | 11:38 pm CDT
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Saturday, July 17th, 2010

image of pizza on bicycle seat

Pizza on a bike seat. Just in case you were hungry.

We’ve seen plenty of oddities on the way to the farmer’s market, but every so often we see something just a notch above the usual weirdness that we have to stop, look and think about it for just a few moments longer than we normally would. This was one of those times.

This slice of pizza was still waiting on the bicycle seat when we walked back to our car forty-five minutes later, so it wasn’t something the owner set down for just a sec while he ducked into the nearby Gotham New York Bagels store (Shameless plug: try the sausage & egg bagel!) for a cold soft drink to go with his early-morning snack.

We had to assume it had been left there quite some time earlier, perhaps even the night before, although now that I think about it the squirrels probably would have gotten to it by morning, so forget I even suggested that. But it had clearly been forgotten. There was no one around, and it was there for at least an hour.

I really wanted to grab it, take a bite and put it back on the seat, just to see what would happen. Would the owner pop out from his hiding place to ask me what the hell I thought I was doing? Would a passer-by flip open his cell phone to report me to the police for erroneous consumption in the first degree? Would the pizza turn out to be made of rubber, and I’d end up in a YouTube video compilation of dozens of random dopes just like me biting into a slice of left-behind stale pizza?

It was a momentary impulse that passed rather quickly. I’m thinking the only reaction I’d get would be a violent case of food poisoning, and I didn’t want that very much, so I contented myself with snapping the photo and continuing on to the farmer’s marked with My Darling B.

Pizza on a Bike Seat | 5:08 pm CDT
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