Monday, April 06, 2009

Rod isn't sleeping well.

He's been going to cider and fry bars after work lately, and it's becoming a trend with him. He and the "grips" and "gaffers" will retire to one of those late-night places that specializes in chicken fingers, gravy fries, poppers, and all other manner of golden brown grease-o-lator foods. They wash it all down with pitchers of hard cider, ordered three at a time. Sure, they love it, and it keeps them from being dizzy on cigarettes, but the toll it takes on his health is non-trivial.

When he finally got home last night, he didn't even touch the cup of cranberry water I had set out for him. He came straight to bed, snored like an apneating didgeridoo, and reeked of cigarettes and grease. It was like sleeping next to a great big farting pile of college. I don't like being so crass, but welcome to my hell.

I need to guide him away from this habit naturally. It all comes down to the production crew. The cardigan and corduroy bunch are a hedonistic culture by nature; it might serve us well if I got him involved with more of an "historical obesity" crowd. Reality shows are the bane of our existence in some ways, but I can appreciate their isolated effectiveness.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


Yes, you read that right. I'm not surprised you've never heard of Sensibilly. It'd be way off your radar, most likely, but lately it's been a real focus of my evolution as a dancer.

First, though, I have to tell you about something Rod's been up to. He's been working with Max Planter. Yes, THE Max Planter. Max is an energy healer, and in addition to being gorgeously physically fit, his on-set chemistry with Rod is extraordinary. You really need to check out the first volume of their maiden series, Proof of Exit, even if you aren't into same-sex male adult features. Believe me, you'll be amazed at how truly blurry the line can be between where one man ends and another begins. ($24.99, Hattokiri-Hydra Films)

Okay, back to Sensibilly. You've no doubt been subjected to the cacophony that is "Rockabilly" — kids having fun dressing up like cowboys and greasers and going outside. They drink, they do anatomically incorrect joint-destroying dances from the 1950s, and have horseshoes on their clothing. Nonsense. I've never had the patience for a second of it. But along comes Sensibilly.

Rudolfo Bucharini, the visionary founder of Sensibilly, wanted to create a "welcome mat" movement for kids who had grown up and grown out of the Rockabilly thing. Costumes and outlandishly masculine cars are discouraged; most arrive by bicycle or gravity-sensible skitter-cart in something comfortable and sustainably grown. We don't smoke, and we certainly don't drink alcohol. Dancing is encouraged, but those who don't wish to socialize can lounge together in the reading area — a large blanket Rudolfo spreads out a couple dozen yards from the designated "dance floor" (usually a Tiki torch-delimited square about the size of a badminton court). You wear your own iPod, so as not to disturb the other dancers, or you just feel your own way around the space's energy. The vibe turns out to be tremendous, and experimental. I find myself slipping out a new stutter-shuffle or flying heel variation in an environment of total, non-judgmental freedom. It's incredible.

The Rockabilly-disaffected are trickling in here and there, largely thanks to Rudolfo's heavy flyering around the community college. We have a low retention rate, which I'm actually really proud of, because I know this group isn't for every dunderhead ex-costume cowboy. I'm realistic. And that's why I'm underwriting our next county-wide flyering campaign. It's an angel-phase thing. You'll thank me when Sensibilly finally comes to your town. You'll owe me a big one.

Friday, April 25, 2008


As you know, one of Cornelius's many embarrassing "jobs" is transcribing adult videos. I guess it was just a matter of time before he came across some of my partner Rod Huggins' work. Let me just say that he spared no acidic, over-wrought insult in his flaying of Rod, and although Rod is taking it well enough (he is in the family room eating Christopher Elbow ganache and reading heavily-scented fan letters), I'm as mad as a lathering hornet.

Here's how my phone call to that senseless old fool went.

- - -

PAT: Cornelius! Are you responsible for subtitling Chuck Wagon Chubbies Eight: Blowdown at the Bunslinger Corral?

CORNELIUS: sounds familiar. Patrick, you sound angry.

PAT: Rod is DEVASTATED by your descriptions of him and his acting!

CORNELIUS: Rod? Rod...your partner? Goodness no! Patrick, if I had known that was—

PAT: Ahem. “The goateed chap with the accordion-like love handles and picnicky shoulders hoists his bilious girth over the corral’s top-most beam, severely testing the workmanship of the anonymous cowpoke carpenter who long ago labored to build a containment device with a far nobler—and nimbler—animal in mind...”

CORNELIUS: Goodness, that is a bit astringent. I am so—

PAT: AHEM. “...As the two suet pots bumble artlessly with one another, the viewer feels the urge to stir seeds and bits of chopped raisin into the deep, unctuous folds of their jobbly midriffs, thereby creating a nutritious place for birds to eat."

CORNELIUS: Oh dear. I regret I cannot take it all back, as I believe it is committed to a special track on all distributed copies of the title. Is Rod much distraught?

PAT: Never you mind Rod's feelings! I'm just calling to let you know that you've really screwed up THIS time!

CORNELIUS: Patrick, please let me come over and offer a proper apology to—

- - -

Too late. I'd made my point, and I didn't want to let him come over and hem and haw and pretend like this wasn't his fault. Because it was. He did that, he was rude and nasty, and now he's going to have to pay. Rod and I are going to have a dinner party for all our closest friends soon, and he's DEFINITELY off the guest list. Just his luck, because I'm breaking out my latest, labor-of-love recipe for cashew bean "cassoulet" with sumac tofuouille and Rhodac pine extract.

Thursday, November 08, 2007


Well, you're probably wondering what happened to Soytopia: An Ecological and Sociopolitical Clarity Bar. It's been a few months since the opening, and I've been so busy an update is long overdue.

After the first disastrous morning, I shuttered the place for good. I have no patience for the sort of social organism that can't immediately respond to a literal gem in its politiculinary landscape, and I didn't want to waste another dollar on Spuni grass that would never get eaten, so I did the smart thing and cut my losses. I feel great about it -- makes me feel superior to this stupid-ass town and all its wannabe thinkers. I heaved all the food into the dumpster out back but locked it so the freegan dickheads wouldn't get a gram of my investment. I'd rather bacteria and seagulls ate it than a bunch of free-loaders with perfectly functional wallets.

What have I been so busy with since then? I've been watching a lot of documentaries about South America and the damage the chocolate industry has wreaked down there. I'm getting my notes together for a project that will hopefully destroy the entire cacao production system from the ground up. You won't get chocolate any more, but you'll live in a better world.

There is no "you're welcome" on the front lines. It's not why we do what we do. So I don't expect to hear it, and I don't need my inbox filled with it. I'll fix things, you just sit and watch. That's how the system works.

Friday, August 31, 2007

Soytopia: Opening Morning!

I had started to think it would never happen! Soytopia: An Ecological and Sociopolitical Clarity Bar finally opened its doors last Thursday. Whew. I could write a book. Actually, once we get in the black, I think I will. It should be a scandalous exposé of the joke that is the private contracting industry. God, those grease-labes.

I clicked the latest, most expensive, code-compliant brass locks open at 6:59.59 AM on Thursday, and gently propped the doors into an open position (it is my opinion that my "bar" should always be room temperature, so my doors stay open all day). Things were quiet for a bit, when all of a sudden a bird of some sort dove in and started attacking the granola bar! I shooed him away with a broom, but not after he had defiled the contents of every single ingredient tray. That invasion cost me over $39.78 in product, not to mention valuable time. Fortunately, no one was in yet.

Around about noon I noticed that word had still not gotten out, so I began to hang my pièce de résistance above the bar: a recumbent penny-farthing, antiqued to look like a relic from the 1920s. I suspended the bike with twine and temper cable and I have to say it looks awfully damned fine where it hangs. Reminds me of that U2 stage with the small car, only more intelligent and provocative. Once that was done, I began to prepare a few of the various live sandwiches and lavoshes -- the ones I knew would be highest in demand during the lunch rush.

By one o'clock the town's enlightened had still failed to arrive, so I stuck my head outside to see if there had been an air raid warning or police cordon at the end of the street. The idiotic customers of the Dude and Catastrophe were spilling out onto the sidewalk, arm in arm and singing bawdy songs about maids named Mary whose nether regions could kill a canary, so I slammed the door. Room temperature be damned, I didn't want them to think they could ramble into MY establishment having that kind of time. Just to be safe, I put the CLOSED sign in the window, dropped the blinds, and turned the chairs up on the tables.

All in all, not the best opening day, but not the worst. Some time around six PM a wanderer named Michael started playing guitar on the sidewalk out front, which I took to be a good omen. He's asleep out there now - I may slip some live lavosh under the front door so that he has a snack. It would be a shame to waste it.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Soytopia a few steps closer to opening.

Soytopia: A Sociopolitical and Ecological Clarity Bar! (I'm thinking of keeping the exclamation point in the title) is three months closer to opening, and you'd think that'd mean a lot, but you'd be wrong. First, here's what's been holding off progress on the space itself:

1) Is it possible to find a contractor who won't pass judgment on a socio-homopolitical lifestyle? Every time these clowns get a clue that I'm of a certain persuasion, they start playing pranks. They whistle when I walk by, pretend to pull down their tool belts, and in some cases call me "Lucy." I've had to fire three crews so far, and every single time someone manages to quickly draw a penis on the wall before they clear out. I swear I've got my eyes peeled, but they always sneak this past me. I have to paint over it myself, naturally, so the next group doesn't get a head start.

2) What is "FOX" motorcycle racing? Is that something that people who have not heard of falafel or Europe enjoy? I swear, every one of these goons has a FOX sticker on his truck, and one dope's ice cream-shaped girlfriend ("BODY BY ICE CREAM," I laughed to myself) even had the FOX tattoo across her shoulders. Unless they have their wedding on a big dirt jump ramp, that's going to look pretty stupid come the big day. I mean, as opposed to the rest of the time, when it's a lovely statement of what she believes in (noisy machines piloted by twitchy valley trash named Jamie-Kye). When I saw that girl, I told the crew they were off the job.

I was primering the wall by the counter until 3am.

3) With forward-thinking food products, you unfortunately see a lot of brands folding before the market makes time to understand them. Daffy Dave, Pablo Ingrèsu, even Tim Fadone's "Breath of a Healer" Wicksocks™ are gone (poor Tim - I emailed him, don't worry). I've got to line up at LEAST a dozen new foods to stock, and keep a close eye on them. I hear good things about the "LiveWire" living baby kombu "papardelle" - still has the root in sand and everything. Brilliant.

4) Admittedly, my informal poll on the bar's concept resulted in a less than red-hot response. I'm clearly going to have to host some workshops and "theme nights," to keep things going during the critical first six months. It'll just be the usual suspects from around town - Tantric SkyFucking, with Melody Rain and Dan; Dr. Bert's Banjo Tuning Seminars; Tumbling for Tots with Teacher Steve. I wish I had a back room for this stuff. I'll have to close completely on those nights, draw the blinds, and hope they all come back on regular business days.

Wheesh. This is a lot of work. I'm not saying I respect other bar/restaurant owners, because I know they cut corners every chance they get, but I do at least "get" why so many of them throw in the towel before they've tried even HALF as hard as I have.


Wednesday, April 11, 2007


You thought I was full of it, didn't you? Well, once again, you've managed to be wrong. Just like I said, my uncle Bradley has a vacant shopfront not thirty yards away from the Dude and Catastrophe, and he said I could turn it into a competing establishment. Get ready to eat your own asses into the dirt, Ray and Cornelius. Business is war, and you just met the Harry Truman of sustainable, zero-impact veganism. I'm going to drop a V-bomb and your business will go up in an eco-friendly, smokeless pyre fueled by organically ruined dreams.

Whew. I'm a little giddy after that last sentence. That was good, even for me.

Aside from the usual stupid carpenters and motorcycle-weekend idiots with white trucks, things have been going AWESOME. Check out these additions to our menu (some of which are based on my chats with people from the local boards and cafés):

1) Lever Bee's Bananas Thermidor (a sweet banana substitute for an unsavory old lobster monstrosity - imported from England)

2) Pablo Ingrèsu's "Disproportionate Snack" (rough translation). This is the first Hispanic fortune cookie I've ever seen, and the fortunes are enormous. The three I've tried each ran to over five hundred words. One was even some important Central American poetry.

3) "Punk Slake." Everybody knows how committed the punk rock movement is to the Straight Edge philosophy of purity and responsibility, and now they've got a vitamin drink processed by machines that run on northeastern energy grid overstock! (One of their dads works for a company that hedges against this particular grid — it's complicated, but it WORKS.)

4) Tim Fadone's "Breath of a Healer" Wicksocks™. Wear these dense gauze packs on your feet, forehead, and wrists while you eat, and they'll normalize the temperature imbalances caused by normal mealtime pulmonary-thermal release. I plan to have a coin-operated dispenser by the front booth. If you order enough, Tim will print your company's logo on them, so I need to come up with a logo asap. Some quick thoughts are...circles, spheres...globe...carrot piercing the, too violent. More on this later.

5) Tofupia. What's Tofupia? Only the tastiest "nIce cream" sandwich around. Best part? They're raw. Yeah, good luck finding one of those at the crappy Dude and Catastrophe.

It's a little too early to set an opening date, what with all these moronic contractors who can't seem to find their rear ends with both hands, let alone their calendars (perhaps their calendars are up their asses! Hah! There's a thought). Anyhow, just bookmark this page and check back once or twice a day to see what's new.