Monthly Archives: February 2012

The New York City Subway. A Brief Rant

Today’s Music: The Police – Every Breath You Take
Days Til Spring: 20

This is just something I wanted to get off my chest, and since it isn’t what I usually do, I thought I’d throw it in on the extra day we get this year.
I ride the NY Subway system every workday. I take the train in, I take the train out. Sometimes in the course of my day, I need to take the train Uptown. Then, to get back to the office, I need to take the train Downtown.
The J, M, 4, 5, 6, 7, E, F, R, G, 1, 2, 3, 9. Even the D. I’ve ridden almost every line in the system.
Sometimes it’s a freaking nightmare.

Sardines have it easier

The NY Subway has around 7.5 million riders per day. They go down to the platform, get on train, get off the train and back to the street.
So what I don’t understand is why two things happen every day:
– Someone holds the doors for more than the 15 seconds we all expect
– How some of the train crew manages to keep their jobs.

Yeah I've ridden with this guy.

We’re all in a hurry. That’s why they call it rush hour. And you don’t want to wait five and a half minutes for the next train. Because you’re special. So you race for the door and then hold the door for your slow friend.
But at the next station, when some other pez-head does the same thing, you explode in righteous rage. Because they aren’t special.

Generally conductors are nice enough. Some of them throw a little something extra into their station announcements. Mostly, they know their way around the system, and are happy to give directions.
But sometimes, they don’t care. Or even more likely, they don’t like you.
Seriously, I’ve seen conductors stand with a smile on their face waiting for someone to race to the bottom of the stairs before yanking the door close lever.
While smiling.
And I’ve seen it a lot.
Sure, I whined about the door holders above, but the conductors? Dude, we have to be someplace. You’re probably going to get stuck in the tunnel because of traffic or a bad signal anyway.
Have a heart.
I don’t think there is deliberate ill will in the subway, but there sure is an awful lot of random ill will.
And it all seems designed to piss me off.

K, that’s it. Rant over. I still think it’s one of the best mass transit systems I’ve ever been on.
The best is London’s Tube.
Now for a fun subway moment.

Trifecta Challenge – Wretched

Today’s Music: Echo and the Bunnymen – The Cutter
Days Til Spring: 22

I have absolutely no idea how often I’ll participate in these. but this one just sort of developed itself.
Honest criticism is welcomed in the comments. Seriously, if it sucks, or you have issues with it, let me know. It would be nice to actually be good at writing…
(Oh, and for those of you with no interest, click the Friday Foolishness tag above the picture at the top, and check out last Friday’s earworms. But don’t share them. Really, that’s just mean.)

The Monday Friday Challenge from Trifecta:
wretched adjective \ˈre-chəd\

1: deeply afflicted, dejected, or distressed in body or mind

2: extremely or deplorably bad or distressing

3: being or appearing mean, miserable, or contemptible (dressed in wretched old clothes)

Again, please use the third definition in no less than 33 and no more than 333 words. Have fun.

So here’s my entry. At 333 words. If Hotspur gets extra points for the 333, then I want em too. Even if his is better.

His suit didn’t fit. Too long in the sleeves, too wide at the collar. The seat crept up his ass.
He didn’t care. He shuffled along as the clouds slowly crept up on the sun. He could feel the air cooling as they devoured it.
He didn’t care.
Wet hit his misshapen nose. One drop. He tilted his head skyward. Another drop. Another. The beginnings of a torrent. He looked around for shelter. Maybe a discarded newspaper or plastic bag. There were none.
The deluge started, pouring from the sky, dousing him, overwhelming him, drowning him. Water poured in down the too wide collar, down into the seat of his pants. Rivulets streamed down the too long sleeves, dripping off the ends of his fingers, to be lost in the flash flood at the curb.
He didn’t care.
He slouched along through the cold wet, one of his shoes squeaking with the water it absorbed at every step…
At the corner he turned into the small office building where he worked. He trudged across the lobby to the elevators. Reflexively, he pushed the button and waited.
Nothing happened.
After a few minutes he looked up.
Out of order.
He sighed and turned to the stairs.
Squish. Squish. Squish.
He labored his way up the steps, the coolness of the conditioned air making him shiver inside his wet, sopping clothes. He pulled open the door to his floor, made his way into his office, found his way to his desk.
He took off his coat, sleeves dripping on the page of the report he’d been working on all week. His silk tie was water-stained and rumpled, the rain ruining that too…
He sat down, turned to the small window next to his cubicle for a look outside.
The clouds were rolling back away, sunlight streaming again.
Of course, now that he was sitting at his desk.
He could hear the weather forecast come from another cube. More rain for the afternoon.
Another wretched Monday…

33 Word Trifextra Challenge

Today’s Music: Sebadoh – Skull
Days Til Spring: 23

From the Trifextra Challenge:
“For this weekend’s Trifextra Challenge, we are asking for a 33-word response to the picture below. Make what you will of it; there are no rules. Poetry, prose, comedy, drama–just give us 33 words, on the button. Have fun with it.”

“I tell you about how much I loved this man, and you say a bowling ball?!?”

“Of course! If I just file this down here, can you imagine how well it will roll…”

I’m probably posting this too late to get in on it, but hey, it’s the internet. Who pays attention to details like deadlines anyway…

Tag and Release

Today’s Music: The English Beat – Save It For Later
Days Til Spring: 24

We know who you are, where you are, and what you had for dinner.

Ok, El Guapo sucks at these. He has been blessed with nominations for a bunch of awards from bloggers he respects. So far, The Guapster thinks he has acknowledged two. But Guapamole got hammered all of a sudden with tags. Seriously, it’s like a drunken WWE brawl in the ‘sphere right now. Plus, two of the taggers asked Guapowitz very nicely to do this. Translation: They said they’d do things to GuapWithoutWits you wouldn’t do to the neighbor’s cat.

So Count Guapula is responding to a hideous stack of questions. And Guapatine has enjoyed answering them. Some of them really made him think. And some of them really made him think the questioner was insane. But in a good way. So, if there’s anything else you want to know about the GuapTart, send an email, or put a question in About or Adminisilliness. SmashingGuapkins will answer. But he probably won’t do many more of these. Unless the threat is particularly entertaining…
So here are the answers. And you should check out the blogs of them that asked. They are all a lot of fun, and GuapoBell is honored that they all chose to burden me tag him!
If Count Guapula has missed someone that gave him this award, he is sincerely sorry, and he will do his best to make up for it if you let him know.
(Questions are in bold, which is the only place in this post you will find 1st person singular nouns.)
Adair You
1. Die a bit younger with all your facilities or, die at a ripe old age, having no idea what is going on.
Dying with his facilities intact might be nice for a change. Lord knows El Guapo has lived long enough without them…
2. Have you ever eaten gefilte fish?
Eaten and loved. With horseradish. But not the jelly stuff. Guaparoni doesn’t know what the hell that is. (Gefilte fish itself is a compressed loaf, generally made of whitefish bits)
3. Your perfect companion. (Yes, LiC and Guap, you may just post photos of your beloved).
In the interest of anonymity, TheGuap’s girl won’t let him post a pic.
4. Do you still write real letters?
Guapola photographs and arrange pieces of Alpha Bits for all his correspondence. If it’s important, he tapes the cereal to the page.
Honestly, Guapowitz thinks birthday/holiday cards are the only non-bills he mails anymore….And the occasional t-shirt (you know who you are).
5. Movie or play or book?
Book. Though El Guapo really enjoys all three media.
6. What have you done you’d prefer your parents not discover?
You know, after GuapTart turned thirty, he pretty much admitted everything. Turns out it was all pretty funny. After the fact…
7. Do you/Did you like your inlaws? (me Nope.)
Mostly. El Guapo loves his girl’s Mom – she is an incredible cook.
8. Regular coffee or the fancy schmancy stuff?
Regular. El Guapo has yet to stand in a Starbucks and ask for a Grande. It’s a medium cup of coffee, dammit.
9. One thing on your bucket list.
Not dying.
10. Biggest surprise you’ve had.
That his girl picked him.
11. Pick an ethnicity other than you own. Why?
Iroquois. El Guapo doesn’t know near enough about the First Peoples, but from what he does know, they have the best philosophies around…

LizzieCrackecd (not broken)
1. What’s the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?
African or European?
2. How do you feel hearing everyone has a water buffalo… And you realize you don’t (if you DO have a water buffalo, skip this question and answer the bonus I have a water buffalo question)
Guapanese doesn’t need to accessorize himself like everyone else. Just because the cool kids have a water buffalo doesn’t mean GuapAndRoll needs a water buffalo. He knows Timmy in the fourth grade said he had to have a water buffalo if he wanted to be cool, but Timmy’s an idiot. Even if he does have a signed Tito Puente lunchbox. (Wap-Bop-Guapoloobop wants a water buffalo!)
3. Who is your favorite cartoon character?
Pinky. NARF!!!
4. Who is you favorite super hero?
The Most Wonderful Girl In The Universe. And you, lizziec – the most awesome Naked Scissor runner ever.
5. IF I had the power to confuse you as my super power, what would you think about frogs?
El Guapo thinks fro- Wait a minute – TheGuap sees what you did there. He thinks…
6. Which is more fun… pulling teeth or tea in China? NO wait..I think I got mixed up…
Guapola likes pulling tea off of teeth in China.
6. What does that have to do with the price of tea in china ?
El Guapo doesn’t know. Does anyone ever expect the Spanish Inquisition?
7. How old are you mentally ?
No idea – it’s hard to do math with the alphabet blocks. Though El Guapo thinks he just answered your question.
8. If you could go back to any age what age would you choose?
The age of enlightenment.
Or the age of Beets. Whatever…
9. If life gave you lemons and tequila was unavailable what would you do with them?
The Guap would wait for the first person who said “Make lemonade!”.
Then he would squirt lemon juice in their eye.
10 How much wood can a woodchuck chuck.
Sadly, they only chuck when GuapperWithCheese is trying to sleep, so he has not been able to count.
11. How do you get rid of those pesky woodchucks anyhow?
Guapunzel hopes you don’t think he’s overreacting, but he likes nuclear weapons for that job.

Bonus I already have a water buffalo question:
are you happy with your water buffalo or would you prefer a Cebu?

HEY YEAH! Guaparoo will get a cebu! That’ll show Timmy!!!

More Zen Now
1. What would you do if I sang out of tune?
Join in, probably making inapppropriate animal noises. Or change the lyrics.
2. Coffee or Tea?
3. Soccer or Rugby?
4. Liberal, Conservative or Nunya Beeswax?
Right now, Disgusted.
5. Love or hate Stanley Kubrick?
Generally love, but really can depend on the flick.
6. What is your favorite era, where and why?
Favorite ERA would be the 28th amendment (if it passes before any other amendments).
7. If stranded on a desert island who would you most like to be with?
El Guapo’s wife. And someone with a boat.
8. If you have children do you sometimes hate them a little? (Yes , I loves my chilluns but…)?
No kids, but El Guapo is frequently not a fan of those of his friends.
9. What is your favorite novel and why?
Tough one. Maybe The Old Man and the Sea by Hemmingway. It’s a very moving story, told very directly. Not a wasted word in it.
10. Sonny or Cher?
Chaz. Wow, that’ll stop you for a sec, won’t it!
11. What is your preferred method of de-stressing?
Whatever happens to be the first thing The Guap does after all these questions!

1. If you were stuck in a burning building with no possible means of escape but had a bag of marshmallows….. Would you toast them over the fire or just eat ‘em straight?
Guapowitz would melt them just enough to make some clever Macgyver type marshmallow based contraption to escape, then get a job as the Marshmallow Lobby spokesman.
Oh, and toasted.
2. The funniest knock knock knock you can think of
Knock Knock
Who’s there?
Interrupting Cow.
3. Weirdest thing you’ve eaten.
Weird is relative. El Guapo has yet to be given a food option that he has flat out declined, untried.
Did once eat a fish eye. Gelatinous on the outside, hard and plasticky core.
4. Tell me what you’d do if a bird excreted on your head.
Happened to GuaperBell in France. He cursed the French. In English.
5. Stupidest thing you did while you were sober
Dude, there ain’t enough space on the internet for El Guapo to list every stupid thing he’s done that is tied for number one.
6.Can you run 2 miles if I kick you out of bed at 4am…. to chase me down ….. Theoretically. In reality I won’t make it the first mile.
No. But Guapola can wait for your tired ass to get back.
7. How many quarter pounders do you think you can eat in a sitting?
If memory serves, about a dozen. Now? Maybe 9.
8. Bacon or Beer. You must decide!
El Guapo decides yes.
9. Can you tell me, an exact use for a rubber duck?
Yes, The Guap can.
10. in your dreams….. Are you on top?
Upside down, frequently.
11. Rosie Huntington-Whitley or Megan fox? You Must Decide!
The entire internet and those are the choices?!?

1. What is the most exciting thing you have ever done in your life?
GuapingtonBear will go with letting go of an airplane in flight. But honestly that probably isn’t the most exciting thing…Actually, he can’t pick one right now…
2. How would you wear gasses if you didn’t have a nose?
If El Guapo somehow lost his nose, would blurry vision even be something he was worrying about at that point? Or Guap would just get a Navin R Johnson Opti-grab.
3. Doesn’t expecting the unexpected make the unexpected become the expected?
The bitter voice of experience says no. It just means leaving a little extra in the checking account to pay for the consequences.
4. How do you know if you have fallen in love if you don’t have any bruises?
well, if you have to ask…
5. You want to have sex with a tampon?
El Guapo doesn’t know. Is it cute and disease free?
6. If you had to come up with a Major sports team name what would it be?
7. Are redheads good in bed?
Redheads in general, or is there a specific one to be investigated?
8. What is your favorite book and why?
K, El Guapo answered Old Man and the Sea above, so now he’ll go with John McPhee Looking For A Ship. It’s an account of life on a Merchant Marine ship, published in 1990. It’s a favorite, that he has enjoyed re-reading…
9. Do fish get thirsty?
Only if they haven’t been drinking enough.
10. How come when socks come out of the dryer, there’s only one of each?
Because the other had to report back to the mothership to provide intelligence to our alien overlords.
11. Do you believe is fairies?
As Shakespeare said, There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in your philosophy…
El Guapo thinks that covers it.

1- What do you think happens when you die?
The maestro will be decomposing.
2- Creation vs Evolution?
Evolution. And don’t go waving that “banana shape” argument at Guapalooney either.
3- Will there ever be an end to suffering?
Shortly after the first question happens.
4- Do you believe in global warming?
Yes. And don’t go waving that “banana shape” argument at Guapalooney either.
5- What would be your dream job?
Guapski would like to test adventure gear in the field for a living. And beer. He would like to test beer too.
6- What’s your ideal vacation spot?
The Guapster has a serious weakness for the tropical islands around the Carribean. he would like to rent a barebones sailboat and cruise around El Mar Caribe for a month, visiting the best ports and bars, as well as uninhabited islets.
Ah, what a way to spend some time…
No, he has never done that before. Yet…
7- Are you content with the choices you made in your life?
El Guapo was aware of the consequences of some of the stupider things he did in his youth. That being said, the bastard is singularly unrepentant. He also thinks that if it hadn’t gone that way, he never would have found and married the most wonderful girl in the universe. That’s how it went. He ain’t gonna worry about it now… He just wishes he hadn’t drank all that cough syrup this morning…
8- If you knew you’re going to die tomorrow, what would you do?
Leave the water running.
9- Are you adventurous?
Ha, really? Guapowitz is quite possibly the most fearless (read: stupidest) attempter of shennanigans ever to stomp the earth.
10- Have you ever tried yoga or meditation?
Guapalocious believes the unexamined life is not worth living. He also thinks that ignorance is bliss. he ponders the paradox of these two perspectives every once in a while.
Also, he tried yoga twice. And is relieved he doesn’t get embarrassed like normal people.
11- Whats the best meal you’ve ever had?
In his youth, Guaptastic once sailed in the Around Long Island Regatta. At the end of the race (about 3 am), hte crew was invited to grab a meal at the hosting yacht club’s dining room.

The Guapster will not tag anyone, but if he were to (or if anyone just wants to answer), these are the questions he would ask:
1- What did you do that you never thought you would?
2- Mustard or Ketchup?
3- If it were that much fun, would everyone really be doing it?
4- What is your online name based on?
5- If you are above legal drinking age, do you still have a stuffed animal? If you are below legal drinking age, do your parents?
6- Finish the sentence: The quick brown fox jumped over __________
7- Would you rather go into battle with an attack penguin or a carrier mole?
8- Greatest golf movie ever made?
9- What bad movie have you seen that could have been great? And how would you have fixed it?
10- Why does everyone else seem to want to strand you on a desert island?
11- What one thing never fails to make you smile?

For those of you that are wondering what the hell is going on with the 3rd person pronouns, El Guapo blames The Hobbler. It is totally her fault. and he believes First person pronouns in the questions themselves are acceptable.
Also, El Guapo sincerely thanks Ginger Snaap, Old Dog, New Tits and LizzieCrackecd (not broken) for spending a day on twitter and giving all these @Guapowitz variations he could use.
If someone would like to thank them by taking all this free time off their hands, El Guapo would sincerely appreciate it.

Friday Foolishness – Evil Edition!

Today’s Music: Talking Heads – Psycho Killer
Days Til Spring: 25

*A note: Today’s poll is evil. Really, it is insiduous and may very well scar you for the greater part of the afternoon.
You’ve been warned.

Yes, Van Halen rocked.
No, I have no idea why I went to Indianapolis to see them.
But I did have a blast. More on that to come…

Her’s a few posts that caught my attention from around the ‘sphere this week:
SightsnBytes told us about his friend Josh. Brian Westbye threw up another great short piece, this time mocking hipsters.
And Eric Murtaugh embraced the nervousness of his first time.
You should check them all out, then mosey on through their blogs. It’s all good stuff!
But not right now.

Because what you really want to know is the answers your fellow commenters came up with for last weeks poll, Who should be honored on President’s Day.
Well ask no more! Here are the other answers. (Comments in italics, as always, are mine).
John Q. Shopping…that’s why everything is on sale.
(With the amount of sales throughout the year, he’s got to be the most honored man in history!)
Thomas Crapper…for bringing all the crap inside. Red.
(Thanks Red – I had him confused with WC Flushington)
Me, of course! Mrs. Cap’n Firepants, future President of the United States
(How would you direct the Secret Service to respond to Wonderbutt?)
Masterchief. Nuff said.
(Cortana would still be the woman behind the man.)
Charles Nelson Riley — LindaV
(I should have known you were a Matching game fan!)
Add Thomas Jefferson and James K Polk because they had the most BRRAAIIINNSSS!
(Wait – had as in “possessed” or as in “ate”?)
Guapola – for his coolness…whitelady
(Thank you whitelady! but there’s no way I’d survive the background checks.)

Captain James T Kirk
(Sure, he’ll get the green woman vote, but how does he do with the rest of the population?)
The Brain (No, not BRRAAIINNS, but The Brain, from Pinky and The Brain. Alex A.
(THE WINNER!!! I wish I’d though of this!)
Congratulations Alex! And from the list of answers in the poll,the most popular was Zaphod Beebelbrox. Just more proof of how cool you all really are.

But now it’s time to move on. I’ve talked several times about my girl on this blog. But the reason I love her and think she’s so fantastic is summed up in today’s poll. Because it was her idea.
And again, I have to say that if anyone has anything even remotely productive they want to do today, don’t read any further
There is no “Other” answer this week. Leave your choice in the comments so everyone can suffer enjoy them without having to wait.
You’re welcome!

And until next time (when I do the concert review), here’s a song I don’t mind having stuck in my head.
From the show I was at. Seriously, most of the concert is on You Tube…