there is water underground.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Thursday Morning, 3 AM

This might be the most random post ever, but what can you expect on a Wednesday night (actually, a very early Thursday morning)?

First things first - get the dirty thought out of my head. We ordered Chinese food for a big meeting at the office today, and one of the dishes was called "Double Happiness." Now I don't know about you, but I was mighty disappointed. My idea of double happiness lies somewhere between Scarlett Johansson and Maggie Gyllenhaal, certainly not among the shrimp and scallops sauteed in a delicate Szechuan sauce. Imagine my disappointment. (sigh)

And with the 2:30 AM television nearby, I just saw a few commercials that I've never seen before. These three, in a row.

1) Petco is advertising clothing for pets with the tagline "your pets know when they look good." Really? Pet clothing? Seriously? As if pet owners don't have enough to spend money on already. Food, health, cleaning supplies for when the dog shits on the carpet... the pets primp themselves; do they really need to be pimped ? (a-thank you, a-thank you very much)

2) Zwinky. Apparently it's more fun to create an online personality and send him to a virtual party where he can chat with other virtual chicks and get virtually rejected than to get off your ass, go to a real party, and actually get rejected.

3) Pills for restless leg syndrome. Side effects include nausea, diarrhea, drowsiness, headaches, stomachaches, disorientation, and decreased libido. But your legs will be fine. Really, restless leg syndrome? Are drug companies coming up with this shit so that they can make people scared that they have these disorders and then buy the drugs? I'm waiting for a pill that makes me forget all the drug commercials. But it'll probably give me the diabetes.

This is a great picture, courtesy of cute overload:

And I saw a concert in a planetarium the other night. One of my favorite musicians - Josh Ritter - played a surprise show at the Museum of Science for 100 people, and a few people from the mailing list were chosen to attend. Lucked out. I've been a fan for a few years now, but this concert definitely was a highlight. Great music, full horn section, inside a planetarium. The acoustics inside were kinda funky - but not bad, especially on the quieter tunes. But his new album is more rockin' than his others, so some of the tunes really sounded raucous, especially with horns. And yes, there was a light show. I also got to meet the guy after the show - spent about ten minutes talking with him. Very gracious guy, lots of energy and passion for what he does, and truly appreciative of his fans. One of the better shows I've ever seen was a concert in western Mass, when Hem opened for Josh. We chatted about that show, our mutual appreciation for Hem, and our love of redheads, and I got to ask him about one of his lyrics. Good times.

Totally not tired. Almost 3AM. Dammit. At least I figured out a title for the post that also paraphrases Paul Simon. But I'm still not tired. What's a dude to do? What would the Dude do? The Dude would probably make himself a drink. The Dude abides. I'd be a great Dude. (sudden epiphany - puts on The Big Lebowski) Ahh. Much better. If I can't sleep, then I'm gonna watch the Coen brothers destroy Steve Buscemi yet again.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

A Man Can Be Cured Of Every Folly But Vanity.

Some people do creative things while in Maine. Take Josh Ritter, for example. Great musician; he wrote a wonderful album while spending some time in a remote area of the state. Another example might be Andrew Wyeth, a great painter who spent his summers there and created such masterpieces as Christina's World.

I was in Maine today, and due to a rescheduled meeting, I spent quite some time aimlessly driving around in the surprisingly cool summer morning fog. It dawned on me that while some people come to Maine to truly be creative (see above), there are many more who live there and only think they're being creative. I say this because of the exponential number of vanity plates that I observed today.

It must be a Maine thing. Seriously, I have never seen so many vanity plates, and I have done a shitload of driving. Been to Maine a few times and I've noticed it before, but this time I kept a notepad with me. So - here are some, uh... northern creations:

PLASTCS - must be a fan of the Graduate
LUVMNMS - didn't get a look at the driver, but if you love M&Ms enough to mention it on your license plate, then... damn.
DMX 420 - I really hoped this was going to be some pot-smokin' rap-lovin' dude, but it turned out to be an older couple. Must've been a coincidence.
2FAST4U - on a minivan. No kidding.
MOMSCAR - Sure, whatever. Mom doesn't drive a fucking Hummer.
DKDKGOOS - Gotta be a kindergarten teacher. Or a hunter.
HIHOAG - This took me a while. I knew that it had to be a vanity plate, but I couldn't figure it out. As coincidence would have it, later on in the day I found myself looking at a periodic table. AG = Silver. What a nerd.
And, of course:
LOBSTAH - the driver must've killed someone to get this plate.

Now, I wasn't actually behind the wheel in Maine for that long. About two, maybe two and a half hours tops - and I was up there at the crack of dawn so there weren't that many people on the road for a good hour. Additionally, these are about one-third of the plates I noticed. Craziness. Guess there's something in the water (something in the lobster?) up there.

I'd love to find some statistics on vanity plates, like which states have more per capita, or what some of the funniest plates are. Never gave much thought to it - I don't know what I'd put on mine (something to do with bass, maybe?) - what is it that makes people want to have a vanity plate (other than vanity itself)? It's kinda like a tattoo for your car - more permanent than a bumper sticker, and there's definitely some thought that goes into creating a statement about you that can be expressed in seven or eight letters/numbers.