Sunday, May 29, 2011

Haiku Mondays: CLICHE

As our esteemed winner of last week's Haiku Monday, Pam in OKC will be judging this here contest and offering up a prize. I'm hosting. Here's how it works:

1. Post your haiku(s) on the theme here, in the comments section, on or before midnight PST, this Monday, May 30th.

2. If you'd like, post your haiku, along with visuals, at your own blog and let us know that you're up. Pam is considering visuals in her judging.

2. Check in with Pam, who will post her winning haiku and prize sometimes on Tuesday, May 31st.

Simple. But a not so simple topic. So give it a good think, thank, thunk, and hit us with your best shots quick as a wink and before your creativity goes to the dogs.

* * *

Did you hear the one
about the blonde in the bar?
Joke’s on you; you bought.

Friday, May 27, 2011

It's Not Easy, Being Green

New Mexico's chile crop is in serious danger. Drought, labor shortages, and competition from foreign countries with cheap labor and inferior chiles are all threatening to put our farmer's out of business. Read about it here. Imagine New Orleans without its signature Cajun or Creole dishes, Florida without its oranges, Philly without its cheese steaks, and that will give you an idea of what would happen to this state were we to lose our chile culture. It's everything to us, on all levels—economic, social, and psychological.

So if you're a chile afficionado, accept no substitutes. Call up my buddies at Bueno Foods and have them ship you the real thing. Ask your grocers to stock only certified New Mexico chile. And if you happen to find yourself out this way, take some time to drop by one of the esteemed restaurants on the official Green Chile Cheeseburger Trail 2011.

Click here to access the map above for the location nearest you.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Haiku Mondays: Hobbies Winner

What on earth is going on with Blogger? I sure hope the fact that it's misbehaving again didn't prevent anyone from submitting a haiku. I waited a few hours after it seemed to be up and running to see if there were more submissions. But it seems we're solidly locked in at 12 players and 18 haiku, each a most excellent rumination on what it is exactly that we do in our off time. Or, if you're Buzz, don't do because in Buzzworld, there is no such thing as off time.

Anyhoo, let's get to it, shall we?

Aunty: Could it be that Aunty is a secret gamer? Or wishes she were, and if that wish came true, she would be some kind of leather-outfitted avenging angel of dominatrix-ey doom? Food for thought, y'all.

Boxer: One of my favorites this go 'round, a top contender for its air of nostalgia and the way the last line bitch slaps our low tech past with today's digital wizardry. Five miles up the hill through a foot of snow much, Moi? Yes. And I refuse to apologize for it.

Buzz: Another top tier contender. Someday soon, Buzz, you will have all the time in the world to do . . . absolutely nothing. Because when that time finally arrives, why in the heck would you want to fill it right back up?

Czar: Ladies and gentlemen, the hardest working man in the Publishing Industry. He forgot to also mention wrangling Hunter S. Thompson, kissing Jane Fonda, and temporarily assuaging Thornton Dial's mistrust of white folk.

Fishy: Ladies and gentlemen, the hardest working woman in Haiku Mondays, regaling us with no less than three snap crackle poppy ruminations on her favorite past time: playing board games. Single best line of this week's competition: Donald has been trump'd.

Fleurdeleo: Fleur hasn't been playing with us long, but she's been playing hard and fierce. This week she contributed yet another stunner, a pitch perfect ode to the beauty of making something out of nothing.

Foam: Foam never fails to make me suck in my breath with her evocative imagery, this one shrouded in mist and dripping with dew as she ponders her love for long, ambling walks. So pretty.

K9: I love the staccato simplicity of this, like a Morse-coded call to arms for the insomniacally conspiratorial set, sipping endless mugs of Morning Thunder while half eyeballing the contents of their gun cabinets just in case the revolution decides to hit at 2am.

Karl: Karl strikes me as someone with a very upbeat disposition—all of the sunny without any of the hippie. The winner of our last competition, his entry this time was a short and sweet exhortation to go ahead and do something, anything already, so long as it brings you happiness and peace.

Has camera, will travel. And take photos of what has to be my most favorite virtual kitty of all time: Sterling. Have you seen him lately? He's a contenda.

Princess: Another multiple haiku entrant, two that focus on jam and preserve-making, the other on quilting, all beautifully written and making me thankful that the domestic arts are alive and well in the hearts of many of this world's men. I also love this line: "lashings of jam." Tres cool.

Troll: One minute he's here, the next he isn't. Is he off saving the world from Rampaging Rapturers or is he secreted away in some smokey dark room paying his mortgage by outsmarting the competition in Texas Hold 'em? We'll never know. But we do know he can write Haiku, and in the end that's all that really matters.

Now, for the winner. For me, it was neck and neck between Boxer's ode to old fashioned darkrooming and Pam's cat wranglin' 'ku, with Buzz and Troll nudging up closely from behind. For Karl, it was never a question: Pamela all the way.

One cat in; two out
Two cats in; one cat garage
My life: cat herder.

Why? Anyone who's ever had to manage a multiple-animal household knows exactly what she's talking about. I also like the sing-song-ey way she structured her words to mimic the constant bustle of that management. And because we all know what it means when someone says, "That's like herding a bunch of cats." In other words: near impossible to the point of chaotic hilarity.

Congrats, Pam, on another worthy win. Now go snag yourself some pistol ice cub trays and see if you can't sneak 'em through your metal detector at work.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Haiku Mondays: Hobbies

So, what do you do for fun? Bake? Ice skate? Collect knick-knacks? Stare into space? Whatever it is that floats your boat in your off hours (or that you wish floated your boat), then now's your chance to expound upon it in a literary manner comprising the ol' 5-7-5 syllable structure of the way we haiku 'round these here parts.

Señor Karl was the lucky winner of our last competition, hosted by the lovely Fleurdeleo, but since he's having a busy spell with work and Master Basho's Ghost seems to have taken Troll with him back in time (we miss you, dude), I have agreed to host this week's challenge.

Karl, however, is offering one hell of a bang-up prize.

So come on, lil' podners, take your fingers off your triggers, place them on your keyboards, and post your best shot in this here comment box. If you're also posting at your place with images, let us know, too. You have until midnight EST on Monday to do so and Karl and I will confer via email on Tuesday and declare the winner.

Alrighty, then, Party People. The Rapture obviously passed us by, so now you have NO EXCUSE NOT TO HAIKU.

Hit us with your best shot . . .


Aunty: Do we write only one haiku? Do visuals count?

Moi: Aw, heck; if anyone is so inclined (Fishy :o) ), let's make it multiple haiku this week. Visuals, while always appreciated and fun, don't have bearing on the judging.


Moi: Nope, doesn't have to be your hobby. If you want to make fun of your neighbor's propensity for skeet shooting, have at it.

* * *


In my spare time I'm
appreciative. You make.
I wear, hang, and sniff.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Cool Thing

Guaranteed to get banned at some point from some place sometime soon, I suppose, but until then, how nifty! A lil' giftee por Moi courtesy Chickory and Boxer during their outing to Blue Ridge a few weeks ago. Made by Fred and Friends, it's a flexible ice cube tray that freezes six perfectly formed handguns of about 4" in length. Imagine the possibilities at parties.

What nifty gadget have you discovered lately?

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

American Idol Snark Station: Ich Glotz' TV

The weirdest gospel album you'll ever listen to,
but it sure beats Tina McBride.

* * *


This show just isn't any fun without Simon Cowell. But at least Gaga somewhat alleviated the over arching soap opera schmaltz. And managed to pull out of lil' ol' Hailey the night's only great, maybe even slightly weird, performance.

Long live weird.

Monday, May 9, 2011

You Must Want

Dear Southern California,

I don't really know what to write about you. Except perhaps that, after spending four days surrounded by your hyper-glossy, overly-manicured beauty, a beauty achieved solely by what must be one of the greatest feats of civil engineering (or rape) in U.S. history, I now fully understand the whole subset of contemporary pop lit and music that both celebrates and indicts everything that we covet about your lifestyle—from Steinbeck's East of Eden to Nathaniel West's Day of the Locust to the Door's "LA Woman" to Joan Didion's White Album to Hole's "Celebrity Skin."

Because that beauty is also a curse. It makes one lax and conformist. Materialistic in the worst way. Sheeple-minded, ready to plunk down a year's income on a car, the equivalent of a small island nation's GNP on a house, and God only knows what amount on a series of lifts, pumps, sucks, and tucks that is skewing our normal notions of beauty and making it suddenly acceptable to look as if one has simultaneously been run through a wind tunnel and a sausage stuffer.

* * *

Dear Bebe, the Fashion Choice of OC Housewives Everywhere,

Why, yes. My life's one true sartorial dream is, in fact, to spend my days looking like a Kar-trash-ian.


Look, dressing like a hooker in bed? Fine. In the grocery store or office? Not so much. In fact, if there were one fashion house that I would set a match to and watch burn to the ground with the glee of a first grader pulling his first set of piggy tails, it would be you, Bebe.

* * *

Dear Nissan Leaf,

There I was, trying to enjoy the high of completing my first half marathon post foot surgery, looking forward to downing an ice cold Corona light and condiment-slathered Nathan's hot dog before parking myself at the finish line to soak in the sun and cheer my husband over the finish line of his first marathon, when your chirp-voiced, balloon-chested, inexplicably school girl outfitted spokes girl decided to harsh my mellow.

"Hey there! If you have a second I'd like to introduce you to the Nissan Leaf. One-hundred percent electric with zero emissions!"


"The headlights are made from 100 percent recycled plastic! All the metal is recycled aluminum cans!"


If it hadn't been for the fact that in order to bust into the wrapping of my post race all-organic, 100 percent natural oatmeal cookie with no artificial trans fats or nitrates, I had to stop walking, and that stopping just happened to put me in front of said Nissan Leaf and its (inexplicably) school girl outfitted spokes girl, I would have walked on by without responding. Because I also needed to pee. Really, really badly.

Then, the heavens parted and drew my attention to something worth mentioning. There, located right next to the boring ass squirt of toothpaste looking automobile that no Californian in their right mind is ever going to drive down the PCH, was one of those rusted barrel-type trashcans, its contents stuffed to overflowing and spilling onto the ground. Mixed contents, let me add, including what must have been hundreds of empty plastic water bottles that were being given out like candy at the race.


Moi: Chew, chew, swallow, swallow (really small cookie). "Don't you think that's a little ironic?"

School girl spokesperson: "Excuse me?"

Moi: "Well, here you are, pitching a car made out of recycled materials, but the trashcan next to you is overflowing with paper and plastic that is going to end up in a landfill somewhere."

School girl spokesperson: Blink, blink.

Moi: Clench, clench. "Excuse me, I need to pee."

I'll bet you any amount of money that when school girl was finished for the day? She ran to the parking lot, overjoyed at the prospect of driving away from it all . . . in her Mercedes.

* * *

Dear Corona del Mar,

Ignore everything I just wrote above.

Marry me.


Sunday, May 8, 2011

Haiku Mondays: First Kiss


Toddler terrorist
sights her playground prey. Chase, catch,
kiss 'em 'til they cry.

* * *


Eighth grade kegger's Grand
Illusion: smells like leather,
tastes like Marl'bro reds.

* * *

Fleurdeleo, our winner of last week's Haiku Monday competition, is therefore the host of this week's fete. To play along for the chance to post the Haiku Monday Badge of Honor and a fabulous prize, visit her at Fleur's Pearls. This week's theme is:


Friday, May 6, 2011

What You Gonna Bring Us, Keep us from the Gallows Pole?

Former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty: No. No, no, no, no, no. In the words of S.B.: "Typical snot-slick politician."

Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum: No. Too much of a Fundie for my taste. It makes me cringe to hear the typical conservative social agenda blather trump what I consider to be more important issues. The personal is NOT political. Go. Away.

Godfather's Pizza mogul Herman Cain: Mmmmmmmm, pizza. Best line of the night: When asked about his lack of political experience, pointed out all the people in Washington with so-called experience who have been elected, and then said. "How's that working for ya?" I wouldn't mind seeing him in the White House.

Millionaire businessman and former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson: One of the best governors this state has ever had. Honest, upright, clean living dude. I've met him and he's a straight shooter, his ideas are out-of-the-box sensible, but he had a terrible showing last night. Still needs to "cook," as Pam would say. But I liked what he said about Afghanistan. That we went in for good reasons—to get Osama bin Laden and to break the Taliban's stranglehold, which we initially did until we mucked that up—and now we're building roads and bridges and schools and borrowing 43 cents of every dollar in order to do that, adding to a debt so bloated, it's literally impossible to count that high.

Texas Representative Ron Paul: I was heartened to hear that most of the audience's loudest cheering followed Paul's comments. Outside of Gary Johnson, the most common sense, libertarian-minded of the current crop of republitards. What some detractors call a nut case, I just see as justifiably grumpy. He should be. We have a LOT to be angry about. Let's do something really hopey-changey and elect this guy. Most everyone else is just a cardboard cut out that people will vote for for the same old/same old reasons, and, seriously, how bad could it be? No worse than what we've got going on now.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

American Idol Snark Station: And Then There Were Five

Will probably win it. The purest pop/rock voice of any of the contestants on the show, and although I hate 30 Seconds From Mars and bands of their ilk, he'd be the perfect front man for something like that. Make a lot of money, do a lot of drugs, waste a lot of good food in restaurants, sleep with a lot of shady women, end up on VH1 Behind the Music. And later, play the casino circuit.

Jacob: I didn't dislike his first performance as much as the judges did, but dudes, a harp on a Nazareth song? A freakin' HARP? That just wasn't okay with me.

Lauren: The girl can sing just about anything, but I think I finally have to admit it: I just don't care. She still seems, as I think Pam pointed out a while back, half baked. Unformed. In need of something above and beyond what she's been doing, so that she doesn't come off as just another carrieunderwoodkellyclarkson clone.

Scotty: For someone so young and funny-lookin', he's amazingly confident on stage and no doubt about it, he has a great, very versatile voice.

Haily: Is it wrong that I liked her rendition of "House of the Rising Sun"? Maybe. But I did. The problem with her, though, is that I think she wants to be a star more than she wants to be a musical artist. That great smoky tone that's going on in her voice could land her firmly in the alt-country genre, if only she were more than just a face and a voice, if, say she could play an instrument, write songs, front a band. As it stands, she still remains firmly in karaoke land as far as I'm concerned.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Haiku Mondays: Inspired by Favorite Song Lyric

Inland empire
ants affect affluence, but
it's all work, no play.

* * *

Thanks to everyone who played this week and to Troll, originator of this here Best Meme Ever, who so kindly hosted while S.B. and I were enjoying a weekend in Southern California to shop until we dropped (our jaws), run the OC Marathon/Half Marathon, and basically wonder at the California dream that seems at once so admirable and yet so dangerously sealed off from the rest of the really real world.

Anyway, those are musings for other posts. And, yes, I'm writing the manager of the Newport Beach Marriott to give him a piece of my mind on the internet debacle AND the fact that we paid $18 a day to park the rental, which we got for $50 for all four days. Madness, I tell you: MADNESS.

Anyway, let's get on with the judging, shall we?

I'll make this short and sweet. Everyone submitted what I can only say are contenda worthy haikus this week, so once again, it comes down to that little extra something, which, I admit, is particular to the particular judge, in this case, Moi, who tends to choose the winner based on how well something both sticks in my head and evokes emotion in my heart.

In this case, it came down to four:


Born on Iron Horse.
To the V-twin thunder roar
Be wild summer knights.

I instantly knew which song he was referring to and as much as I recall my sojourn in South Dakota during Sturgis with horror, I do love riding motorcycles. My father ran through a series of bikes (Triumphs, BSAs, Harleys) when I was in grade school, finally settling on a custom chopper he designed himself and upon which he used to take me and my brother to school. Sans helmet or any other protective gear, I ate more than my fair share of bugs and still bear the faint scar from the exhaust pipe burn, but I loved it. Great, job, Buzz.


seer of visions
a legend and martyr; shines
exposed in the light

I give Pink Floyd a lot of scheisse for their at times self-indulgent stoner-'tude languidity, but truth be told, they are (were) in many instances utterly brilliant, and this is one of my all time favorite songs, ever. If more haunting lyrics were ever written about life's complex confluence of loss, failed ambition, hubris, and redemption than those contained in "Shine on You Crazy Diamond" I don't know what they are. K9 captured the essence of the song perfectly.


"With or Without You"

It's a conundrum;
Staying would mean disaster.
Leaving, just the same.

Yup. A familiar sentiment, perfectly and concisely summed up in a neat little package in that cut to the chase, ah-hah way Kym has when writing haiku. I give U-2 a lot of crap, too, mainly because I find Bono insufferable, but they're responsible for some truly sublime songs, and this is one of them. Kym's haiku pays that sublimity proper homage and as such would have been my winner had it not been for . . .


Hitchcock cool blonde mom
fights off rage-fueled words like birds
heroine or fool?

Which I chose as the WINNER for this week, because it sums up so perfectly not only her chosen lyric—a reach back into the musical memory banks of the 1990s to Sir Mix A Lot's "I Checks My Bank"—but it astutely ponders the true motivation of one of the most ill-conceived attempts at social control to ever come down the pike in the name of protecting the pwecious chylldrun, Tipper Gore and her army of Jimmy Choo-ed Nazi Mommies otherwise known as the Parents Music Resource Center, or the Big Bad PMRC. My hatred for this and other groups like it (PETA and MADD being just a handful) is legendary and when Tipper first started flapping her mouth at the horror she felt upon listening to Prince's "Darling Nikki," which started the whole kerfuffle, I was all, "Well, then, you dim bulb of a blonde, don't let your kids BUY the thing!" and I wrote her to tell her so. Listen, Party People, it doesn't take a village; it only takes individual parents doing something that I think we have long forgotten in our misguided quest to make the personal political: their fargin' JOB.

Also, I just love the technical aspects of the haiku, everything from comparing Tipper to a cool Hitchcock blonde (an archetype that Hitchcock viewed with both admiration and derision), and the tidy alliteration of "fights off rage-fueled words like birds." Oh, and fool, most definitely fool.

So, Fleurdeleo, you red lipstick wearing, pearl casting chanteuse of the computer keyboard, congrats on your win and let me know where I can send your jar of salsa. You also get the honor of choosing next week's theme and hosting it at your place.