But it's not necessary

The biggest sucker deal in retail.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006


When you decide to write about writing, you've definitely crossed into new territory. Whether it's a move up or down depends on where you started at, and what you write, but it's definitely not the most creative topic. If you're new to this particular blog, it's very random, and almost never too personal. I don't talk about my children, or my sex life, or my every waking moment. It's not a Daddyblog, or a sexual conquest blog, or a diary. In short, it's a "Blahg". A lot of people (that don't write or read blogs) don't like the word blog, but it really suits what I do here, especially if you spell it with the 'blah' in there. I write sporadically and erratically about whatever suits me, sometimes trying to be informative, most of the time just to amuse myself and people like me. What I mean is, I'll tell a story like "The Punchline" because it makes me chuckle inside every time I think of it. All I hope for is that a few people with similar humor sense will enjoy what I have taken the time to write. (... and spellcheck and then re-edit five times because Blogger has different ideas about line breaks than I do.)

I'm not saying there is anything wrong with the Mommyblogs, the 'dear diary-type' blogs, to the contrary; some of my most favorite bloggers write exactly those types of blogs, it's just not for me. It really depends on the blog-writer, if you can write about daily minutiae and hold your reader's interest for years, then you either have a very interesting life or you tell it very well. Usually it's the latter, and my favorite reads should know by now that they are dear to me, even if they don't read this. (They don't and won't.) I take tips from the layout and content of other blogs, but I don't use most of them. For example, I tried putting a cut into the longer posts, went to the trouble of learning how to do it, and then I realized that it didn't make a lot of sense to truncate my posts. If you are here and get bored, move on. Why should I make those interested in reading the whole thing click another link, just to make each post a uniform size, or whatever the reason might be? I don't think you should feel obligated to read the whole post just because it is all on one page, I have certainly clicked away halfway through a few posts, lemmetellya! (all smart alecks should click away now.)

While I enjoy reading other blogs, commenting from time to time, and getting feedback, I'm not interested in joining any blog-gang organizations, it seems very counter-intuitive to what I want to do. I belong to forums for television, politics, and technology, I don't want to carry on conversations via each other's comment box. I want to accumulate only those readers that find me amusing and/or entertaining, not because they get x number of Bloggin' Bux for visiting associated blogs or what-not. I'm not a hit-count whore, and I don't want keyword hits; if I talk about Op.rah or MyS.pace I always break it up. I don't really see the point in dragging readers in by the mouse if they're going to be disappointed when they get here. Again, nothing wrong with it and no offense meant towards the exploding rent-a-blogs, or those that drop keywords for attention; I just don't think it would work too well for me.

What I try to do here is a hit-and-miss proposition, sometimes I rewrite subjects that have gotten good responses in forums, IRL, and a lot are from reply-tag email conversations. I wrote about the nasty healthnut cookies because it happened exactly as it's written and it still cracks me up. I wrote about finding someone on MyS.pace that made me sad because it did. Other times, I don't even know what I am trying to do until halfway through, and if you've read a few of the entries here you may be surprised to learn that I don't publish everything I write about. Don't scratch your head too much, I actually do junk things that I write that don't gel. I wrote a parody of a recipe after seeing Monique on the Tony Danza Show talking about her hideous Macaroni and Cheese recipe, and the fact that she was pushing a cookbook. It occurred to me that cookbooks are readily available on the cheap, and recipes are free and abundant online; so what is the appeal of the celebrity cookbook? The elaborate, personal detail-laden recipes. Nobody really wants to know what Monique ate to get so fat fabulous, if anyone is buying her cookbook it is for the filler more than the recipes. So I wrote a parody recipe that to this day I don't know if anyone got it. If you have to explain it, it ain't funny. More importantly, if you have to explain it, then it didn't work at all, I think that is what happened with this particular post. (But that sauce is friggin' great!)

At the end of it all, after pouring a small portion of my heart into a few hundred words, I usually feel guilty about possibly wasting some people's time; so I started putting up links to other sites that are more likely to entertain. These "Duty Freebies" are my way saying; "Thanks for stopping by, now for something completely different." The name "Duty Freebie" comes from the tagline. That tagline, "The biggest sucker deal in retail"; is from a Seinfeld episode where Kramer and George are on their way to the airport, and Kramer wants to stop at the 'duty-free shop'. George informs Kramer that 'duty' is a small amount, not much of a savings at all, "[duty] is the biggest sucker deal in retail; it's like sales tax!" This makes very little sense as the tag for a free-to-view webpage, that is precisely what I found so fun about using it. I called it "But it's not necessary" because I really wanted to say "You might think, but it's not necessary", which were my feelings towards a lot of the weblogs I had witnessed up until that point. That was a little on the long side, so I decided to split it up, and I think it holds up rather well. I chose 'part-time thinker' as my identity because I knew even in the beginning that it would be something I could only do part time, I couldn't possibly update as often as a lot of the blogs that I read. I have a full-time job that is completely off-line, and I do have a life outside of the cybersphere that I need to stay in touch with ... so I'll have things to blog about.

So, over a year after starting I have an 'about me' to point to, right on schedule. I really never thought I would still be doing this, but I'm still amusing myself, which should be everyone's most important reason for blogging.

As promised, your Duty Freebies:

Since this entry is all about me and blogging, I now present the blogs that I have been reading the longest.

I have been reading "And another thing" since January 2003. Eva blogs about random stuff as well as her family, friends, and the goings-on at the call center where she works. She inspires me to persevere. Really.

I have been reading "Illyana DeLorean's rockin' journal" since January 2003, and I admit having forgotten to visit for months at a time. Whenever I go back though, she is still very cool and much hipper than she seems to think.

I have been reading "Stefispice" since June 2003, she writes about her life in the cynical yet hopeful way that only a young woman with the world by the tail and her whole life ahead of her can. I forgot to visit for a while in both 04 and 05, but have made up for it by personally annoying her on more than one occasion.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Hobo lifting aroma

  I know this lady, well, that's a reach, I don't know that she's all that much of a lady, but she showers regularly and dresses up to go out, so you know, six of one. That part, the 'six of one' part, you knew what I meant, right? I short-handed a cliched old saying because I could save space since everyone knows the rest, and what it means. No? Okay, the saying is, "Six of one, half dozen of another", and it is supposed to mean that there is no difference, just semantics, describing the same situation with different words. The same thing, or the same difference, I have trouble with that too, but I'm getting further off track.

  Basically, you say you have a bag of granola and I say you have a sack of crap and some interloper will pipe in, "Six of one, half dozen of another." Ya, fascinating. That might be why they cut it down to 'six of one', see? Anyway, I would like for people to stop doing that, shortening well-known phrases assuming they are so damn well-known. I heard that six of one nonsense several times before I had any idea what these hillbillies were trying to say, and I'm reasonably coherent, really.

  Back to the lady, she married my Uncle and became my Aunt Tinky about 30 years ago, and she is as country as collard greens and backyard dentistry. She is constantly dropping these abbreviated gems of hokum wisdom, leaving me wondering do I even dare ask for the English version. The one that got me the most confused is "He wouldn't take a job in a pie factory." The literal meaning was lost on me, but by context I knew the intended meaning, she could just as well have said "He wouldn't himqua toda flim-whap." She was trying to say someone was very lazy, and specifically that this someone suffers frequent, long-lasting bouts of self-inflicted unemployment. She said this about one of her step-sons, not Jebediah's Dad Flem, but Flem's younger brother Angus. ( He is as bone-idle as a corpse but that's neither here nor there.) The phrase is intended to convey that the person shuns work to such an extent that even a leisurely, lucrative job would not be good enough to keep the person interested for long. Unfortunately, I couldn't figure out how a factory would be such a great place to work, especially a pie factory. Heavy sacks of sugar, flour, and kidneys to lug around, loud, dangerous machinery putting that wavy crimp in the crust, hobos flying all around, I don't think so, not for me thanks.

  Eventually I asked someone else what this botch was saying, and I got the original: "He is so lazy; he wouldn't take a job in a pie factory tasting pies." Oh. Oh! Yeah, that might be a pretty sweet gig! I imagine pie-tasters make pretty good kablinky, seeing as how they have already convinced someone that they deserve full time pay for something that really only requires a mouth, which most of the other workers in the factory probably possess. Not pretentious and sanctified by society like those wine and cheese sniffing snobs, but steady work to be sure.

  All that trouble just because she wanted to save three syllables. I counted, tast / ing / pies. Now that's lazy.

Duty Freebies:

Gallery of the Absurd is summed up in the title, mostly celebrity related paintings, have a look even if you've had enough of Paris Brit J. lohansen Twinaguilera. Bonus points because I loves me some artist that works in different mediums! Known only as 14, she does some incredible work, check out her take on Jessica Simpson's Dad!

Art of Mark Bryan is also a descriptive title address, his work is political and socially relevant, and most importantly available for purchase! Posters, prints, and some of the originals are available, just go by to stare for a while and buy something if you like it well enough!

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

By any other name, would a twat give you money for name-calling?

T-shirthell.com owner Aaron Schwarz is no longer happy being Aaron Schwarz. No, he's not suicidal; he's decided to change his name. People change their names all the time, what makes soon-to-not-be-Aaron's story newsworthy is that he wants you to help him decide on his new name. Not just out of the kindness of your heart, mind you; he is offering to pay the author of his new moniker $25,000!
  Submissions will be accepted for 60 days, after he chooses his top ten there will 30 days of public voting, at the end of which, Aaron will walk into a government building of some sort and walk out with a brand new name. The submitter of the winning name will receive a cashier's check for $25,000! At his website givemeaname you can read about him, see the submissions made so far, and most importantly, submit your idea for his new name for your chance at the kablinky! Just so you know, I have already submitted 'Aaron Schwartz', tough luck, slowpoke!

Duty Freebie: I'm all for new reads, and The Hue and Cry is an excellent read, much more thoughtful than even my regular reads, which I think it has now become. Politically slanted towards honesty, Bushies beware!