Saturday, March 28, 2009


Better headlines are seldom written.

Let's see... a bobcat walks into a bar and tries to mark its territory. Nothing happens. Parched, it asks the bartender for a jug of beer. "That'll be fifteen bucks", says the barkeep. The bobcat throws down a bunch of change and starts to drink. "Not so fast," the bartender tells the bobcat. "You're still short a scent."

Now it's your turn.

Prize is Dinner for Six. (Or a two dollar cash equivalent.)

Okay, so a bobcat walks into a bar and says


Friday, March 27, 2009


I remember when selling a story or a poem to a magazine used to validate my life.

I sold a story today.

I might have an extra beer tonight. Unless I fall asleep on the way to the fridge.

Sad, huh?

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


Kee-rist. I just logged in and saw a message that (I thought) read: Scheduled outrage at 4:00 PM PDT on Thursday (3/25).

And I'm thinking, hell, I enjoy a good outrage, but I'll still be at work. And then I realized that 4:00 PM PDT is 7:00 PM EDT. So I can still make it. And be outraged.

And then I realized it simply meant that Blogger will be down. An outage. For maintenance.

And then I forgot what the fuck it was I was going to post in the first place.

Oh yeah: and then I realized that Thursday will be the 26th, not the 25th. And I was outraged all over again.

Help yourselves to some nachos and beer.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Man, it was tough to return to school today (mainly because I buggered up my back putting in a new bathroom floor over March Break. I think I need a truss for my truss.)

In other medical news, I've been practicing deep breathing and relaxation responses. I am now so fucking mellow I'm nearly comatose. And don't think the kids haven't noticed. One boy even asked if I was feeling okay. If I get any more chilled out, I'll probably stop breathing altogether. (Maybe I should have taken Andy up on his offer to leave me his defibrillator.)

Quick: Heart paddles!

Below: Today, I took the class to the beach to practice relaxation techniques.

Saturday, March 21, 2009


My son and his friends returned home on Thursday evening after spending eleven days in Italy, Sicily and Greece. He took over a thousand photos -- and most are brilliant. Needless to say, they had the time of their (young) lives.

I've added a piece on the Sidebar that links to a new Photobucket album I've started. (I tried to download some pictures here, but they are simply too large. Hell, for a while, it looked as though Blogger was trying to pass a kidney stone.)

He brought home some cool stuff, including a small hunk of volcanic rock from Mt. Aetna. Apparently, there are lots of dogs in Sicily... and wild, roaming pigs. Adventures included: climbing the Dome of St. Peter's; seeing Vesuvius, the Sistine Chapel, the Coliseum (and the way cool catacombs), the Parthenon; ordering calamari (and getting more than they bargained for); sharing a bunk on the ferry -- which made the 'Stateroom' from 'A Night at the Opera' look expansive; making friends with a wild pig; attending a wine-tasting and partaking in a liquor-guzzling exhibition; treading on oodles of history; getting an eyeful of renaissance art; eating french fries with mayo; getting soaked to the gills tramping around rural Greece; and having the best dinner ever, at the hotel in Athens.

The photo at top (amazing -- it fits on the page) shows one of the school groups in front of St. Peter's. This was posted to the Trip Diary by one of the Tour Guides. Anyway... I'm glad he's home. (Well, actually, he's out with his friends again tonight. But you get the idea.)

Friday, March 20, 2009


This is a nice story. Chess is a great teaching tool and every school, every teacher, should find the time to work it into the curriculum. But I am a little troubled with the author's (and teacher's) stated salary. Sixteen grand a year before taxes? You must be kidding me. Kids working at McDonalds make nearly that much. What teacher works full-time for that tiny wage? There's something fishy here. Sounds more like a fly-by-night daycare centre than a school. Hell, most Education Assistants take home three times more money than that. (I should know; I've done the job.) Before you sign on to your next teaching gig, ask to see the cheque, mate.

Question: Does Barry actually have time to play chess? Seems that bowling is his new extra-curricular game of choice. He told Leno he bowled a 129. (And that is laudable beginner territory.)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


I'm going to celebrate tonight by quaffing a few Heinekens.

Which is kind of ironic.

'cause Heineken is a Dutch beer. And the Dutch (read William of Orange) handed James ll's ass to him at the Battle of the Boyne.

Still, the beer comes in a green package.

And besides, I'll probably have a Guinness on Orangemen's Day. (I am a non-demoninational/non-sectarian celebrant who will hoist a pint to damn near anything.)


Monday, March 16, 2009


My son flew on Lufthansa out of Toronto a week ago tonight. So far, I've caught sight of him five times in the pictures posted to the trip blog. But it took until Day Four of the trip before his image surfaced. You can imagine my blood pressure readings for the first three days.

Funny things, those pictures.

He's a young man. But still a kid. And in one shot, he looks for all the world like a little boy. The little boy I took to Junior Kindergarten... and left there, in the care of someone I did not know. As now. In the care of people I do not know.

But he's a young man.


And I'm still a father.

A father who is learning, bit by bit, that his job is nearly finished. Or perhaps, closer to the truth, I'm re-learning that -- sooner, rather than later -- the child really is father of the man.

Still, I liked it better when I had all the answers. Or thought I did.

Sunday, March 15, 2009


I'm a slow writer. I just put the finishing touches on a story I began nearly eighteen months ago.

I like to let 'em sit on the back burner and simmer.

I'm a lazy writer. More often than not, I'd rather dink around with punctuation than cut to the chase.

I'm beginning to see a pattern here.

And still I wonder why the cheques have stopped arriving.

Then there's the novel.

Like a slow, almost imperceptible suicide. Done in ink. In the near dark. And the narrator's voice, angry, saying get the fuck on with it.

I can spend an afternoon sharpening pencils.

Saturday, March 14, 2009


The older I get, the more at peace I am.

With everything

but people.

* * *

If I ever wanted to do anything, now is not the time.

* * *

Were I a contortionist, would I be able to see for myself just what it is that has my proctologist so concerned?

* * *


* * *

Does this arthritis make me look fat?

* * *

Reincarnation. Okay by me. As long as I'm packing venom next time.

* * *

I hate the past.


the beer takes me there

every fucking weekend.

I need a better dream.

Friday, March 13, 2009


What is it with religious imbeciles? Why can't they keep their so-called 'Good News' to themselves? Why, like stunted, modern-day missionaries, do they feel the need to intrude and masturbate, yanking their ingrown dicks to deposit a teaspoon of rancid, holier-than-thou cum into an otherwise intelligent conversation?

Visit any science-oriented website and marvel at the comments they feel impelled to leave. From particle physics to paleontology, these zealous dickwads are out in force, exclaiming the latest discoveries to be fresh 'clues' that Jeebus (and his likewise invisible -- though thoroughly omnipotent -- wacky old man) have left for us flawed mortals to decipher.

Please. Just fuck off. And leave the thinnin' to the grownups, Queeksdraw.

Yours truly,

Baba Looey

P.S. To the free-thinkers, the Heinekens are on the house. Others need not apply.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Despite the two recent incidents of cowardice and senseless bloody murder, the people of Northern Ireland have held more than their breath. So far, they have held fast to the promise.

And the sooner the bastards who wished to eviscerate all sense -- and every positive sensibility -- are found, tried, convicted and forgotten, the better.

If the lunacy of the past threatens to ooze from the gutter, kick in the throat. And the nuts. Blind it with light. Mock it. Starve it. Then bury it. For fucking good and all.

Monday, March 9, 2009


So I'm covering the Kindergarten lunch today. And a kid comes to me and says another kid just plunged a spoon down his pants, in the cloakroom. I asked why. The kid tells me: "He stuck the spoon up his bum, pulled it out, and told me me to sniff it."

Sure enough, in the cloakroom, there's a kid with a spoon up his ass.

I passed this one along to the Executive Branch.

They make the big dough. Let them deal with it.

I'm serious, folks; you can't make this stuff up. (Well, I guess you could. But I daresay, you'd either be super prescient... or you'd have a problem we're ill-equipped to deal with here at The Lunch Counter.)

Now... I really gotta get me some sleep.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

JIGGERY POKERY (and Time Theft)

Fucking Daylight Saving. I can't afford to lose an hour.

Last week alone, I lost an hour picking up after the dog on our walks. Two hours vanished whilst standing in line at The Beer Store, returning empties. And I lost a good forty minutes when my dick got caught in a zipper. (I was trying on new trousers at Sears.)

In an effort to stave off the theft of another sixty minutes, I started drinking early tonight. (Won't even notice it's missing tomorrow.)

Llewellen... tap us a keg. And make it snappy. Time's awastin'.

Friday, March 6, 2009

I can pretty much see the finish line from here. That being the case, I'd like to say:

I'm beginning to think free will was never free (there's a huge fucking cost no matter which way you turn);

I wish I had been more selfish. This was my time, and I gave a hell of a lot of it away -- to dickheads, cretins and assholes -- for free;

If I had to do it all over again, I wouldn't even bother to suit up (that free will thing to the contrary notwithstanding);

The music was good, the beer was cold, and fuck the rest.

Yo, Llewellen: bring some peanuts, a frosty Heineken, and press B6 on the jukebox. There's a good lad.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Political correctness. We all know what that is. But how about grammatical correctness? It's all around us. It's in this sentence. As a matter of fact, it appears no less than six times in the paragraph you're reading right now. And I had no say in the matter.

What am I talking about? I'm talking about the fact that the traditional double space after periods (and question marks, too, I suppose) is no longer acceptable. In fact, it is so unacceptable that the word processing apparatus right here on Blogger automatically renders a double space (after a period) into a single space. From this point forward (i.e. from saved Draft to Preview to Publication) my double spaces are automatically changed to singletons. I mean, What The Fuck? When did all this shit go down? It's everywhere. Double spacing is kaput. And it has likely been kaput for decades. Except I never knew about it. Until tonight. Until I realized that Blogger was doing what publishers have been doing for years -- fucking with tradition.

Jeebus, I must be old, man. Double space.


Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Rome. Sicily. Greece and the Aegean Sea. That is where my son is off to -- for eleven days. This trip is supposedly 'educational' -- planned by the Art and History departments of his high school. (Hell, the only trips I took in high school were down to the Principal's office.)

He has worked and paid the freight for the trip (over the past two and a half years). He will see places at eighteen I will likely never see in (what's left of) my life. I'm proud of him. And I hope he has the time of his life.

Nick: remember to pack toilet paper, Imodium, and Gravol. (And keep some brass handy for tips.)

I'm looking forward to seeing the daily group pictures your teachers post on the tour site. Have a blast, man. It will be the trip of a lifetime.



Sunday, March 1, 2009


I remember a few of the mind-numbing jobs I took to make ends meet. The custodial stuff was the worst: cleaning shit off toilet seats (and mirrors, if you can imagine); unplugging johns; toting out the garbage; washing and waxing floors. At the end of every shift came the sinking feeling that you'd be back at it again the next day, performing the same tasks, accomplishing little and taking home less.

Although I'm a caretaker of a different sort now, the end product of both jobs seems virtually the same. A spiffed up toilet is every bit as useful as a child who can't be taught -- more so, my colleagues might say. (And I daresay the porcelain will have a longer lifespan than some of these kids.) On the plus side, the pay is much better.

The toilets and the mirrors had no say. The kids do... but they're saying no. (Actually, they're saying 'fuck you' and throwing chairs. But you get the drift.)

Still, there are a few who take a coat of wax and buff up just fine. They're mostly girls. The boys are in the dumper writing shit on the mirror.