Friday, January 12, 2018

Steppen into the Future

I have neglected The Clog with remorse likened to that of a hangman's, but still I want my fingers to hit the key with the eagerness of a race horse.  May the blog lords forever grant my soul mercy for failing to post anything in the highly revered month of December.  Ha, I jest, burn me at the stake for my insolence.  The old ways have been trampled over, and even dust is starting to gather on the dust that has gathered on the traditions once held so sacred.  Sacrilege paves the way for righteousness and new monuments shall be erected from the dried bones of those past Clog entries who gave their flesh for the new order.  I think I need to take a deep breath, brew a fresh pot of coffee, and write a book review.

 

Today I am pairing a cup of Sight Glass coffee, made from unmeasured and improperly ground beans, with Herman Hesse's novel Steppenwolf.  It should be noted that Siddhartha, another work of Hesse's, heavily influenced me during my gloriously awkward and angsty teenage years.  The damn book basically made me toss away all my petty cares and become a Buddhist, ok maybe just an antisocial skateboarder.  Steppenwolf focuses on a middle-aged man going through a spiritual crisis wherein he believes his psyche is divided between passive human tendencies and the wild animal urges of a wolf.  Am I hinting that an early onset midlife crisis is tearing my soul apart?  Is the wise and all knowing Herman Hesse going to deliver me from my plight as he once did over a decade ago?  Has The Clog overstepped its bounds and become way too heavy?  How the hell should I know, I am barely scraped past forty pages of this thing.  Steppenwolf has yet to quell my self-destructive urges, and I hardly think it will, but it makes me question myself every time I feel too complacent in life and decide to embark upon a drunken rampage through town.          

Friday, November 10, 2017

The Enemy of my Enemy is my Friend

I know it is wrong to find joy in the misery of others, and being a man filled not with spite or malice, it irks me so to revel in the downfall of the Los Angles Dodgers in the 2017 World Series.  Allow me to preface by saying I have several friends who are Dodger fans, and I wish them nothing but good health and happiness, however I loath their team.  I have been spoiled in recent years with three San Francisco Giants World Series victories, but the days of watching my beloved orange and black march confidently through October seem to be a thing of the past.  Normally once my team has hung up their bats for the season I turn the channel to football, or some obscure horror film I've watched more times than is psychologically healthy.  But with my arch nemesis making a strong run at the World Series title, I decided to succumb to my most malicious desires and cheer for the demise of my enemy.
   

With relatively similar colors as the Giants, I could root for the Houston Astros.  Orange in October just seems right.


Leaves blanket the ground, ghouls haunt the yard, and somewhere in Houston a bar is erupting with the screams of Astros fans as they become one game closer to doing the impossible.  


Yuli Gurriel not only came in clutch for his team, but also was captured on national television giving the most childish racist gesture to Yu Darvish.


The bar may be different, but the game remains the same.


Yuli is a character, one we will come to find both charming and excruciatingly annoying.  


In 2012 I could not be happier to see the once proud Justin Verlander knocked off his pedestal by two Pablo Sandoval home runs.  Several years down the road it was nice to witnes this man get a taste of redemption, at the expense of my foe of course.  


One day after Halloween, with the series extending to seven games, and myself with a malt liquor ravaged brain the Astros put the final nail in the Dodgers' coffin.  My arch rival died quietly amongst various bottles of vodka and gin.  I did not cheer victoriously, for my team did not win, but I sat easy in my chair knowing that neither did my enemy.  

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Friday the 13th

I really ought to shave, but perhaps I will write a poem instead.


Twas Friday the 13th
and all through the city,
fires rages to the north
it truly was shitty.


The casing of my sausage
had just sprung a leek,
did I even have mustard
things truly looked bleak.


poisonous fumes in the lungs
cut like a knife,
but for Brandon we know
red park is life. 


The haze starts to lift
as back nose blunts are slid,
and troubles of the week
soon shall be rid. 


Cupcakes and wine
to cap off the night,
perhaps Friday 13th
would bring me no fright.


Could I be wrong
or maybe half right,
is this the next morning,
or still the last night?

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Is your Emoji Organic?

The picture below contains an image known as an emoji.  I have been intrigued by emojis as of late because of their innocent appearance and comical nature.  They are primarily used in text messages as a replacement for words or phrases to convey a wide range of emotions.  Emojis can be interpreted in many different ways and often contain subtle innuendos, usually of the sexual nature.  No emoji demonstrates this better than the eggplant.  It is used primarily as a phallic symbolic rather than an actual vegetable.  Have we as a society lost touch with mother nature and the cornucopia of edible delights she offers us?  Instead of a wholesome eggplant we see a dick, or in place of a vitamin packed peach we envision a ripe luscious ass.  I suggest a retreat from the perverse and a resurgence agricultural awareness.     


Beware of the wolf in sheep's clothing.  Know the difference between the flesh world and the digital abyss that is your text message screen.  


It may be a little discolored and slightly less robust than its emoji brother, but this is an eggplant you can reach out and actually touch with your bare hands.  Go ahead, grasp it tightly with your hand. 


Alright enough fondling the eggplant, time to peel, slice, egg wash, and flour.


Hot oil coats the eggplant and results in crispy majestic medallions.  


All it takes is a layer of eggplant, sauce, cheese and repeat.  


And here we have emoji, shit I mean, eggplant parmesan.  Smash your phone against the coffee table and pour yourself a glass of wine, because you are now human.  

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Hugs and Afros

It was hot and hell that NBA Draft Day.  It was that type of heat that makes you shake your fist at that glowing orb of fire in the sky and curse its persistent glow.  You begin to wonder if perhaps you should have been sacrificing virgins or lambs to some obscure sun deity during the cooler parts of the year.  With neither virgin nor lamb at my disposal I sought refuge in one of the many air-conditioned safe havens near me.  Today I might finally understand the hype and fascination behind the NBA Draft, or at the very least consume a few ice cold beers in a comfortable enviroment.  
      

4th Street Pizza would surely be the best bar to witness the Draft Day crowd in full fervor.


I should also mention that 4th Street Pizza also has loads of beer, and lovely bartenders who will give you smaller samples of other beer.  Beer and Beer Jr. would accompany me on my Draft Day safari.


"The hug" appears to be the most commonly used gesture by drafted players to express feelings of joy and gratitude.

When using "the hug" in a high pressure situation be sure to designate which side you and your hug recipient will be advancing towards.  If sides are not clearly chosen "the kiss" might occur, which is not the best way to start an NBA career.


It is my firm belief that intimate words and phrases are exchanged during "the hug," but I have no solid evidence of what they are.  I assume they are too hot for television.


"The afro" is clearly the preferred Draft Day hair style, regardless of ethnicity.


"The hug" combined with "the back grip" indicates a different level of gratitude, or perhaps intimacy.


Zach Collins did not sport "the afro" or implement "the hug" during his Draft Day selection.  He instead decided to come off as incredibly awkward and unprepared.  Good luck kid.


My attention started to shift after Bam was chosen to play for the Miami Heat.  He appeared slightly drunk, and for this I applaud him.


By the end of my social experiment I concluded that televising the NBA Draft is pointless, but beer, pizza, and air-conditioning are not.  And I was also one of the only people watching.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

My Beloved Pavilion


At the intersection of Los Gatos Blvd. and Blossom Hill Road a strange dome shaped building juts out of the earth like a mysterious corporate monolith.  The inscription etched along the front once read Hollywood Video, but in recent years has regrettably been changed to Chipotle.  Regardless of what is written across its face, this ominous dome represents The Blossom Hill Pavilion and the various shops that line its painfully narrow parking lot.  Myself and countless others have roamed these premises for decades, slinking in and out of shops like lost souls in an cemetery.  The Pavilion is a warped microcosm of Los Gatos, both self-sustaining and self-destructive.  Having worked in The Pavilion for over eight years I can speak with proper authority on each business that resides here and its respective employees.



Forgive me for being slightly biased, but Starbucks is the glue that holds The Blossom Hill Pavilion together.  Maybe it is because we supply a potent drug that keeps the surrounding businesses, mothers, fathers, the self-employed, tired students, and violently hungover alert and functioning.  I also like to think that most of us working here are the type of person the average Joe wouldn't mind sitting down and having a beer with.  Come out to the The Blvd Tavern after 11:30 and find out.    


My relationship with the AT&T Store has tapered off a bit since switching over to T-Mobile a couple years ago.  And yes I assure you, when your cellphone turnover rate is as high as mine, having a relationship with a cell phone store is very much a real thing.  The employees at the AT&T Store possess a quirky dry sense of humor that is a blend of tech industry and customer service.  I have also witnessed a few of them getting loose at the bars in Los Gatos, which wins them bonus points in my book.  I dig this establishment and respect anyone who puts up with people like me, who ask to have a replacement  phone activated every other month.        


Jamba Juice is the black sheep of The Pavilion flock.  The blending of fruits is a shady business, the employees (save for a few) tend to be weirdly distant and reserved, and the overall color scheme is too vibrant for the human eye.  Jamba slightly redeems itself by carrying Franks Red Hot packets, that I pillage on a daily basis, and for this I tolerate their presence within The Pavilion.


I have a profoundly strange love for the surly chain smoking vixens who work at Pier 1 Imports, and who begrudgingly lug boxes of merchandise in and out of its mysterious blue back door.  Later on in the night you can find a handful of them on the patio at The Blvd Tavern, drinking beer, smoking deeply of their beloved nicotine wands, and complaining about the customers they had to deal with earlier that day.  These dark brooding beauties peddle generic furniture and nicknacks to the mindless hordes of Los Gatos housewives and loathe every moment.  It would behoove them to seek employment elsewhere and live more content and fruitful lives.  But then that black raincloud of despondency floating above their heads would vanish, along with part of their allure.  The women of Pier 1 not only recognize their plight but embrace it.  This acceptance is a direct reflection of the human condition and I am forever intrigued by it.      


Once upon a time, a young lad would eagerly ride his bicycle down to Hollywood Video, and peruse the seemingly endless shelves of DVDs there in hopes of finding the right film that would entertain him and his family for the night.  This was a careful process much like picking out a Christmas tree, which is probably why he was fond of it so.  Netflix would eventually collide with the entertainment world however, completely wiping out the video rental chains from the earth, much like a giant meteor did in the dinosaurs.  The space at the end of The Pavilion remained vacant for many years, until finally a repulsive excuse for a Mexican fast food restaurant named Chipotle moved in.  The boy wept, then cursed, and finally drank a corona to ease his sorrows.  Because at this point he had become a bitter old man.      

That boy waits by this no longer functioning payphone at The Pavilion to this day, awaiting a phone call from some higher power assuring him that Chipotle will eventually be replaced by a pizzeria.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Saint Big Mac's Day

Excessive partying paired with my birthday forty eight hours later are the main culprits for why I have never written a Saint Patrick's Day Clog.  It is said that Saint Patrick cleansed Ireland of the Paganism that corrupted its people, and illuminated them with the bright angelic light of Christianity.  Oddly enough, an alarming amount of Whiskey and Guinness is consumed to celebrate Saint Patrick's purification of Ireland and its heathen customs.  The stench of irony hangs in the air more pungent than stale booze.  Unlike previous years, the majority of my Saint Patrick's Day was spent participating in good clean fun.

 I started my day like any good Irishman worth salt, by bathing myself in Irish Spring Soap.  I actually no not the connection between this particular soap and Ireland.

 Guinness brownies were baked the previous night to be enjoyed on Saint Patrick's Day with my dear old Grandpa. 
 Norman has been eating McDonald's every Saint Patrick's Day for as long as I can remember.  Come to think of it, he eats it on most other days as well.

 Norm's indirect protest against corned beef indirectly inspired others to eat McDonald's throughout the day.  "I feel like this Cup Noodles has too much sodium, I think I'll just wait for my double cheeseburger," declared Mr. Shawn Fast.

 A cheeseburger looks on with envy as Trevor stylishly backside disasters. 

 When asked what type of beverage this youngster was sipping out of his Starbucks cup he replied, "It's Chardonnay."  The ingenuity of the youth at Cesar Chavez Park always astonishes me.

 Buckets by Fnan to end the day.

 Irish car bombs are the least intelligent thing to drink, which makes them the most entertaining.  And when being served by this regal chap nothing can go wrong.

I retract my previous statement.  Kiss me, I'm standing up straight.