Monday, November 29, 2010

Horny Whoosa-what??

One of the things I like about Scruff is that it's not all about local hookups. Sure, that's still an attraction -- or distraction -- depending on what you're looking for. I enjoy chatting with guys all over the world; watching over the course of the day as the different continents wake up, get horny, get off and fall asleep.

Before bed last night I woofed a hot guy from the UK. This morning I found he left me a message...
"Hey man, liking the bod you horny git"
What the...? I'm hoping from the context it's probably positive. I pop open my dictionary app.
git [git]
1. British Slang. a foolish or contemptible person.
Yikes! Is this some sort of abusive cockney dirty talk? Next stop, the Urban Dictionary. Pretty much the same thing, but with more detail. That's where I learned in modern colloquial use, "git" can be used as a term of endearment. Well alrighty then!
"Thanks, you hot biatch!"
Still waiting.

Postscript: Just found out he's Scottish, wears a kilt and can call me whatever he likes.

Sunday, November 28, 2010


Leave it to Microsoft to launch an advertising campaign aimed at convincing consumers how non-compelling their product is compared to the competition. Do iphones really render you gay?

It just so happens I know which app this guy is using...

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Here's To Peckers

Craig: Happy Thanksgiving.

Pac: "As long as I know how to peck, I know I'll stay alive!"

Craig: I think one of the secrets to a long and happy life is a strong, active pecker. :-)

Pac: I'll drink to that!

Friday, November 26, 2010


Thanksgiving Day was sunny and unusually warm in Atlanta. Like shorts and a T-shirt warm. One of those late autumn days you want to make the most of because you know the piper will be invoicing any moment. So while the Jumping Bean was busy in the kitchen making the house smell amazing, I puttered around outside. I started by going down to our storage locker to fetch Christmas.

Of course I first had to take out the stuff which was on top, all part of our annual crap rotation ritual. As the earth rolls around the sun, our Rubbermaid storage bins churn in sync. It made me sad we didn't use our tent this year. With at least two plastic bins full of camping supplies, not to mention folding chairs, sleeping bags and an inflatable mattress, we're well outfitted. Even with zero vacation days, there's no excuse for not finding at least one weekend to spend in the north Georgia mountains. Next year, definitely.

One big crate of Forth of July supplies. We're usually all about celebrating the Red, White and Blue since JB's birthday is on the third and and we always enjoy participating in the annual Peachtree 10K on the Fourth. The race ends at the park so our house has always been the unofficial post-race gathering place. But this year the applications came out while JB was in the hospital for take two of his hip replacement, and getting the forms submitted in time just wasn't a priority. To make up for the income lost while on leave, he ended up working over his birthday and the holiday anyway. Next time for sure.

Finally extracted several boxes and crates labeled XMAS in thick black Sharpie and brought them upstairs just as JB took another batch of his chocolate bourbon pecan pies out of the oven. I set about untangling strings of lights and hanging them from our balcony railing. It was warm enough that I worked up a sweat. JB brought me out a cold beer as I plugged in the last string.

During the night a cold front rolled through. This morning is cloudy and cool with the forecast calling for rain all day. And that's perfect. Today is all about the indoors. College football, yummy leftovers, more of that delicious pie, maybe even some hot cocoa. I think we still have some of those little marshmallows left from that god-awful-yet-mandatory sweet potato dish.

If JB wants to go shopping, more power to him. If he wants to put up the tree today, I'll be happy to supervise. If he wants to watch the game with me, I'll make room on the sofa. I might even share my slanket.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


I remember discovering the International Male catalog in my teens. Goodbye forever JC-Penny catalog! Somewhere along the line they became Undergear, which I guess makes for a better URL. It looks like they're fully embracing their role as pornographer for the closeted and repressed along with their gig as circuit party outfitter. Yesterday I found this in my inbox and even I was embarrassed. What is it they sell again?

"WTF?? Dude... I swear I was just having
 sex with Cinderella a moment ago."

I don't know if underwear models have changed since I was a kid, or if I was just too young to have the whole twink/jock/daddy/bear distinction solidified yet in my gay mushy brain. This ad makes me want to give the Penny's White Sale flyer another try. I remember those guys having body hair. And dignity. And thick, meaty stems.

I really hope this is not the Pumpkin Cheesecake I've been hearing so much about.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Midtown Sounds

My partner and I have lived in our present location for over eight years now. Before that we lived together in an apartment for four years. The decision to buy a place together was logical and made good financial sense. Quite a contrast from our decision to first move into that apartment together, which seemed impulsive and terrifying.

We wanted a condo in Midtown near the park and this place just kind of worked out for us. It's in an older, established complex, a rather small building compared with the boxy steel and glass high-rises which have sprung up around us. Places with self-important names like Metropolis, Spire and Luxe. To be honest, I never noticed the three story stucco building until our agent showed it to us, even though my commute took me past it twice a day for years.

Our unit faces inside, away from the street. I believe the listing called it a "courtyard view". It's a parking lot. But aside from the comings and going of our neighbors, the occasional late-night car stereo turned thoughtlessly loud, the morning bang of the sanitation workers collecting the trash, the twice-weekly buzzing leaf blowers of the landscaping crew, Sebastiano from New Jersey adjusting the timing on his Corvette engine at the oddest hours, and of course, somebody's touchy car alarm which is triggered by all of these activities -- it's much quieter than facing the street.

Sure, I can hear the occasional police siren, traffic helicopter, and the engines from the fire station three comfortable blocks away. But when it's late and I find myself unable to sleep for some reason or another, the predominant sounds at night are the freight trains. I have no idea exactly where these trains are, the closest tracks are miles away but I can hear them clearly. Right down to the faint blaring of the the train horns. It's not a disturbing sound at all, on the contrary. It's relaxing and evokes a feeling I can't really describe in words. Something between loneliness and the progress of daily life. And I drift back to sleep.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Team Building

My department got to leave the office early Friday. My boss organized a "team building" event. Well, he authorized a team building event and delegated the work of organizing it. That's what bosses do. A vote of possible activities was taken, with the opening of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part I in IMAX getting only a single vote.

Those who are familiar with Atlanta know the terms "ITP" and "OTP". Defined by the boundary created by I-285 which circles the city, you're either inside the perimeter or outside the perimeter. I'm definitely an ITP guy. My office and my dentist are technically OTP but as they cling to the perimeter I barely know I've left my comfort zone. As long as I'm in earshot of the traffic buzzing around 285, I'm okay.

So Friday afternoon, with my GPS set to it's sexiest accent, I navigated to the far, far OTP bowling alley. I definitely knew I wasn't in Kansas. For the next several hours six Indians, a Russian and I bowled, drank beer and lemonade, ate a variety of deep-fried items and built our team.

It's been years since I bowled with anything heavier than a Wiimote controller. I used to bowl in college and it took a while to get my form back. I'd like to say I let my boss win, but he kicked ass. My consolation prize was learning I had bigger fingers and shoes (by two sizes) than the rest of my coworkers. And thats what team building is all about.

Oh, and I learned beer and bowling alley carpet don't mix.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Utility Belt

Lots of meetings at work yesterday, but one stands out. Most of my department is Indian. The new guy is Russian. I like the new guy, he's smart and has just the experience we need. That's why after a long and exhaustive interview process, he was the one I recommended above the other applicants.

I strive to be 100% objective and professional when it comes to hiring. So I like to think it wouldn't have mattered one bit if Vlad would have worn his fanny-pack to the actual job interview. How a man caries his smokes, smartphone and snacks has no bearing at all on his skill as an engineer. Just the same, it was probably still a good idea to leave the bum bag in the car that day. Good judgement is another quality I look for in a candidate.

Vlad's been with us almost two months now and he's really doing a great job. And I'm starting to become accustomed to the strap-on purse he wears front and center like a business-casual codpiece. Sort of. As far as I can tell he has just the one, and it really doesn't go with much. But I think I'd be way more alarmed if he had a coordinated collection.

So in a meeting today, it was interesting to listen to a group of my Indian coworkers start razzing Vlad about his geekaroo pouch. "Is that not what a tourist would wear? Are you lost and needful of directions to somewhere?" and "Is that how you carry your rubles? Why do you not convert them and carry a wallet?"

Indians are the happiest, friendliest, most polite bullies I've ever met. I actually get a little depressed if I come home with any extra lunch money. But in this case I was glad they were the ones to say something about the black leather strap-on elephant sack in the room.

As the sole American representative, and knowing full well what it's like to spend time in the cross-hairs, I kept my head down pretending to attend to an important email. (In other words, Scruffing.)

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

He's A Giver

Found these here.
I say this every year, but I'd really like to get my holiday shopping done ahead of time. I'm a horrible procrastinator. Scratch that. I'm an excellent procrastinator. I can rationalize putting anything off until later. You might not even see this blog post until 2011. If I put it off to 2012, I may not have to do it at all.

This is one of those times I envy my friend, Joe. Joe is anything but average. He was pretty much finished with his shopping a year ago. When purchasing a gift for Joe, you only need to remember this simple test:

If Joe can't eat it, drink it or fuck it, Joe doesn't want it.

More than a life philosophy, it's a clear and simple instruction he's made loud and clear on many occasions. And you should ignore it only at your own peril. Case in point:

Beverly: "What a beautiful and unique sterling silver chafing dish."

Pac: "Why thank you! It was a gift from Joe."

Beverly: "Yes, I know. I gave it to him last year."

When you get a gift from Joe, you can be reasonably sure it's a re-gift. When you buck the guidelines when buying a gift for Joe, no matter how well-meaning or extravagant, it's going unapologetically and unceremoniously into the re-gifting closet, probably already with a lucky re-recipient already in mind.

Don't bother getting offended. You knew the rules.


Monday, November 15, 2010

Stone Mountain

I find geology fascinating. The idea that the continents have been careening around like bumper cars, forming oceans and mountains over billions of years boggles my brain and puts our individual microsecond on this earth in perspective.

Saturday we visited Stone Mountain, a large granite outcropping just east of the city. It was a beautiful day and we decided to get our Saturday exercise by climbing the mountain. It used to be a more strenuous climb for me back in my heavier days, but now it's a leisurely hike that I can easily make from the base to the summit without stopping to rest.

What made it more special was that it was the Jumping Bean's first climb with his new hip. He easily made it to the top, pausing only to snap photos on the way. Knowing such a hike would have been impossible for him a year ago, it was wonderful to see.

JB taking in the view of Atlanta from the top of
Stone Mountain.

Happy Belated Veterans Day

Thursday, November 11, 2010


Another Hipstamatic snapshot the JB took yesterday
 from Atlantic Station coming home from the gym.

My favorite time of day is when the sun is setting and the lights of the city are just starting to sparkle. This time of year I'm lucky if I get out of work early enough to enjoy this moment on my commute home. I don't like having to spend the whole of daylight in an office. But the long nights usher in the new season which, to me, contain some of the highlights of the year.

This year I'm consciously resolved to savor these moments. We each have the ability to make our own light. There's no need to fast forward life to next spring, or hibernate like a bear.

Although spending some time curled up in front of the fire with a bear is definitely something to look forward to.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Santa's Little Helper's-Comp Claim

I posted a photo of my cat on Facebook this weekend. Don't worry, my feline misadventures will be well documented in future blog entries. (Right up there with my vacation slideshows, I know you can't wait.) Suffice it for now to say a house with two cats and a dozen cameras is bound to have tons of cat photos.

So I decided to post this one to poke a little fun at those who are already chomping at the bit to get their curbside holiday extravaganza on:

Pac: No Aggie, bad kitty! It's WAY too soon to hang the lights.

This must have struck a nerve, because someone shot back with the prize-winning caption of the week:
StevieB: Poor cat fell from the ladder when the staple gun hit the wire. Why oh, why didn't you turn the power off first Pac? Poor cat probably flew 15' across the room, what's wrong with you?
Pac: Oh he's okay. Walk it off pussy! You've got eighteen more strings.

First, no animals were harmed and there's nothing "poor" about that cat, least of all his appetite. Second, this defensive random stranger does raise a very good point. People need to be careful out there. Electricity, ladders, staple guns, slick icy roofs, catnip... it's a recipe for mayhem folks.

So... (you knew this was coming) to do my part to promote a safe and happy holiday season, I'm using a portion of the the vast Pad resources to endow the creation of the first annual (drumroll, please)...

This first Sparky will be presented to the elf who spreads the most neighborhood photonic cheer with the fewest debilitating accidents. The winner will be determined by this simple formula:

bulb count (lit only)
blood loss (in ml) +
bruising (in square cm) + 
cranial lumps (max 20) +
pinched or smashed digits (max 20) + 
shocks (in volts per zap) +
whacks to the ulnar nerve +
(fractures * 10)

Staple and nail punctures will count under blood loss, and broken fingers will count under both fractures and smashed digits.

Humorous and/or embarrassing anecdotes not resulting in permanent scars will not be counted against the contestant and may instead result in bonus points at the judges' discretion. The idea behind the bonus is not to reward jackassitude, but to acknowledge the value of sharing your mistakes so that others -- even complete strangers -- may learn from them.

Remember, just because people are laughing doesn't mean they're not learning.

And finally, the Sparkies are a safety awareness prize only. There is no consideration for the perceived quality of the final presentation. After all, one person's fabulous quasi-religious electroluminescent masterpiece may be his neighbor's epitome of tacky light pollution. And Sparky don't wanna get into that.

Monday, November 8, 2010

The Legend Lives On

In college we used to have an Edmund Fitzgerald memorial party every November 10th, a tradition my roommate and I continued for several years after graduation. While any excuse to have a party would have served equally well, for us yoopers, the Fitzgerald was our Titanic. But unlike the Titanic, the Fitzgerald came with a cool song. (I'm not counting anything by Celine Dion.)

My grandfather worked for a time on a Lake Superior ore carrier. A dangerous profession, for sure, but a relatively safe and important one considering World War 2 was raging.

I made a ringtone of The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald and it makes a good alarm clock song. It's been waking me up for a few weeks now. While looking for other covers of the song, I found this album. The sample clips are swapped between "The Wreck of the Edmond Fitzgerald" and "You've Got a Friend". Stop laughing Pac, it's not funny.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Bird To The Third, Part 1

When I heard StevieB was stuffing ducks into things, I immediately thought, A) Stevie must be making turducken for Thanksgiving and B) how can I wrangle a dinner invitation?

I've been fascinated by turducken ever since I first heard such a delicacy wasn't just the stuff of urban legend. It sounded like comfort food for Doctor Frankenstein. And ever since I've been dying to try it.

One day I spotted two boxes stamped "TURDUCKEN" in the freezer section of one of our local Publix supermarkets. Each time I shopped there I'd check that freezer to see how fast this particular stock was moving. And each time I saw two boxes. It could have been the price tag, which also never moved.

I personally was never tempted to splurge on one of those crates. For one thing, I need a picture on the packaging of any food product I buy. I don't care how misleading or downright fraudulent it is, my imagination needs help putting that meal on my plate. For another, I'm not spending $80 on generic meat. If I plop a white box with bold black lettering on the checkout counter, it had better be half the price of brand name turducken. Or less. Before coupons.

One day the turducken crates were gone. I imagined some big spender fanning $160 as he proudly purchased everything required for a quadruple meat party for fifty. An even happier idea was the probability we'd passed the expiration date and imagining the beneficiary of that dumpster dive.

I once watched Paula Deen whip up a turducken in between commercial breaks ("You need to really involve your butcher on this one.") right in front of her panic-stricken pet cockatiels with time to spare for a poker game. That was the day I realized even the Food Network offers nothing more than pure escapist fantasy, same as Disney, Lifetime, Fox News and the History Channel.

But I have all the confidence in the world that Stevie can stuff a spectacularly succulent tri-foul. Only 21 days left to prepare and I need to get busy... I have no idea what to wear to a bird orgy.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

More Hipstamatic Prints

I realized after I got to work yesterday that the photo I posted of my eggs in a basket not only wasn't a good example of a Hipstamatic print... it wasn't even a balanced breakfast. So here are some other pics I snapped this weekend with my happiness app.

Sasquatch is just off-frame, telling me my exposure
is all wrong and I should be using a flash.
I'm going to try to sell this one to the National Enquirer. It's the Lock Ness Monster watching a low-altitude UFO flyby.

 Fooled you, didn't I?

It's really just an alligator watching ninety-nine luft balloons go by.

At my local watering hole, Joe's on Juniper.
So I guess it's really a "Gaytor".
See? There he is on the roof. I told you everything has a logical explanation.

I took these on my block last Sunday.
No Photoshop. It's just how Hipsty sees things.

And finally... my favorite:

No, it's not a PSA for Reefer Madness. It's a sexy collage®.

Taken right at my table here...

Six Feet Under, Westside. Yum!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Hipsta Love

I've been playing with my new Hipstamatic iPhone app, probably excessively if you were to ask any of my Facebook friends. What I really enjoy about it is the nostalgic spin they put on even the most mundane of my everyday photos.

I remember digging through the boxes of photos my parents kept, along with my cub scout badges, 2nd Place science fair ribbons and humdrum report cards. (Why did all my elementary teachers seem to think every checkbox required a follow-up essay? Doesn't Needs Improvement speak for itself?)

My favorite photos where from the unimaginably prehistoric days before my birth. Childhood portraits of my parents, snapshots from their courtship, their incredibly detailed documentation of my brother's first year. It was like they predicted with Arthur C. Clark-like prescience the invention of the Ken Burns Effect. Seems their passion for photography waned substantially by the time I came along, only to reestablish itself with a Polaroid vengeance when my little sister was born.

My Hipstamatic app makes me nostalgic for other things too. Like the way my mom used to cook my eggs...

Lens: Lucifer VI
Film: BlacKeys SuperGrain
Flash: Off (Like I have a choice.)

Monday, November 1, 2010

What scares Pac?

Okay, I had a fun weekend. Turns out the Jumping Bean had to call in sick because he finally caught my sniffly, messy cold from which I've mostly recovered. We stayed home Saturday night and watched scary movies. Well, we watched one move which scared me and then I went to bed with my iPod turned up while JB watched some sort of chainsaw massacre.

Aside from the idea of senseless dismemberment, what scares Pac?

Yes, Baby Jane scares me.

JB joked about my movie choice. Said it reminded him of when he was recovering from his hip replacement surgery and I was forced to do the cooking.

I remembered that too. It was last Halloween. I gave him a buzzer to call me if he needed anything. Unlike Blanche's buzzer, JB's was wireless and sent text messages if I wasn't at home. You know, "Help I've fallen and I cant get up!" (As much as I try to be polite and use proper grammar at all times, my 911 transcript will probably read "YES I fell Einstein, now will you send me some goddamn help already!")

Unlike Jane, I wasn't downstairs forging checks for liquor deliveries. (We have a joint Amex.) And while I couldn't rip the buzzer button out of the wall, I did consider once or twice removing the batteries from the walker I pimped out for him. (Seriously, that thing had handsfree calling, a headlight and remote control of the A/V system, the HVAC system and every light in the house. Not to mention his "OnStar" panic button. The only thing missing was navigation, a cup holder and LED accent lighting, but that was only at JB's insistence of enough already.)

Fast forward to this past March when JB was finally back to work, I looked at that walker which had now become a rack for my laundry. "Time to put you, and your pals 'shower chair' and 'bedside commode' in storage while we try to find you all a good home," I thought. The last thing I expected was for JB to return home from his third trip back on the job unable to walk.

He had been complaining of pain in his groin and knee for months. The surgeon and therapist reassured us it was part of the normal recovery process. Not having a frame of reference for such things and knowing JB's tendency toward hypochondria, I regretfully admit siding with them. Already having extended his sick leave once, JB decided to suck it up and get back to work. But I could tell he was afraid. He was in Dusseldorf when his acetabular implant dislodged.

Fortunately the revision surgery and subsequent therapy couldn't have gone more smoothly. The pimped out walker was back on laundry rack duty only a week later. And JB was back in the kitchen on his first day home. After being briefly reacquainted with hospital food, he wasn't in the mood for further surprises delivered on covered plates.

Found this and more on
OOAK Barbies Blog.
Reflecting on this Halloween, I realize what really frightens me. It's not witches or clowns or hockey-masked maniacs with chainsaws. Rather, I'm afraid of the inevitable to come. Watching my partner, myself, my pets and all my loved ones decline with age. Painfully remembering the last six years of my mother's life. Thinking about my dad in his nursing home. Remembering and missing the best of us who were taken way too soon. Wondering, when the time comes for me to press the panic button, who will be waiting on the other end?

And this All-Hallows morning I'm once again resolved that, while life may be fleeting, I'm not going to just bend over and let Time make me his bitch. Not without an extended, extravagant courtship process where I'll play hard-to-get as long as possible, then demand a pre-nup.