Thursday, November 24, 2011


You're never too old to make a hand turkey.

Maybe too drunk, but never too old.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Winston's Review: Horstia Maulbeerseide-Schurwolle


It’s me, Winston J. Schmidt.

I finally got a chance to review another yarn, because Suzanne hasn't learned that I can reach as high as the top of the pub table, even though I dragged her 40-year-old Raggedy Ann down from there and, well, things happened. Look for my review of Raggedy Ann yarn hair in the future.

Squirted! Squirted right in the FACE! I like it when it's not me!

Molly? I didn't get squirted in the face, because I think Suzanne kinda wanted me to do that so that she wouldn't have to make tough decisions about her dirty, old doll. Also, you have to throw a whole bucket of water on me to get me to stop doing stuff, which makes the squirt bottle kinda useless. And she didn't catch me with the yarn, so there's no proving that it wasn't you, even though you're not tall enough to reach up on your hind legs like a velociraptor and grab stuff off the counter, and you don't like yarn. So you didn't get squirted in the face, thanks to me making it ambiguous. You're welcome.

Anyway, I got a chance to review this ball of yarn, so here's my assessment.

Yarn: Horstia Maulbeerseide-Schurwolle

Yardage/Weight: 50 grams per 100 meters

Fiber Content: 50% Silk / 50% Wool

Color: Like, um, pasta? You guys, it really did look like spaghetti, and if a guy can't tell the difference, then you can't hold it against him for trying to eat it, right?

Texture: Single-ply, and sort of shiny and squeaky, and I hate to keep saying it but it really did look just like cooked pasta when it was sitting on the floor, where it just happened to fall after I gently brushed it off of the tall bar table with my face. I watched Suzanne try to untangle and re-roll the ball, and it looked kinda like it was already getting fuzzy and felted, and I don't like that stuff getting stuck in my jowls.

Flavor: Disappointing, because it didn't taste buttery or salty. After my last review, where the yarn had notes of barnyard and grass, this one was kind of a let-down.

Mouth Feel: Silky and slippery, and a little past al dente.

Review: Suzanne really likes this yarn, I guess. She made a sweater out of some of it that didn't look like pasta a few years ago, but then she accidentally felted it, which I could have told her would happen, since I did it just by chewing on it. A few years ago, when she heard it was discontinued, she bought, like, fifteen balls of it in this mustard color, even though she thinks it's going to make her look like she has jaundice.

To me, it's just O.K. It doesn't break easily in my mouth, and it doesn't taste like much of anything. Once I tangled up the ball a little bit, I lost interest in it. If she does make something out of it pretty soon, I probably would try to eat another ball, but it wouldn't be as good as that sheepy stuff.

In conclusion, Suzanne thinks it's great, but I wish she'd let me review more angora.


Winston J. ‘Bug’ Schmidt

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Old Roses

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Ween's Dahlias

Monday, November 14, 2011

Garage Door

I saw this while I was out stomping around today. I don't know why it affected me as much as it did, but I stood in front of it for several minutes before I took the picture and moved on. As I walked away, I thought, "I am a miracle. I AM."

Sunday, November 13, 2011

A Frosty Treat

Someday soon, the foot that made this print will be wearing a sock made out of this yarn.

Lake Tahoe Yarn Company Superwash Sock in Pink Roses and Milk Chocolate. It looks more like Neapolitan ice cream to me, which makes me just as happy.

The sample in the window was simple and very stripy, which wasn't bad, but I'm thinking of something with a little more texture. I'm open to suggestions, if anyone has a thought about it. I've got one skein.

Yes, it added to my stash, but I couldn't resist it.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Three Wishes

I have three wishes you guys! The wishy thing was supposed to be yesterday, so I hope I'm not too late!

First, I wish that every day could be Burrito Monday, because that's when we get tortilla chips. I LOVE tortilla chips.

Second, I wish that I had a room full of red velvet throw pillows. I love those things!

Third, I wish everyone had it as good as I do, because you guys? I have it pretty good. I get chippy snacks, and nobody yells at me when I haul the red throw velvet throw pillows around the house, and Suzanne tells me I'm a BEAUTIFUL PUPPY, like, all the time! Yay!

Anyway, those are my wishes. Thanks!



p.s. I look all wrinkled because I'm wishing REALLY HARD.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Pieces of What

Accountant Boy with Doc's dogs - November 11, 2011 - Truckee

Thursday, November 10, 2011

SuzannaBanana's First Snowman

Hey, kiddos! Belligero Clown again. This is me up in Truckee last summer. I'm not up there with the kids right now, on account of Doc's dogs maybe seeing me as a chew toy. I'm hoping next time, though. The little chick and I never even walked on snow before, so this was the first snowman she ever made. It was cool, no pun intended.

And check out how the snowman matches me. Dig those crazy eyes, would ya? Advil gel caplets. Yeah, the kids took 'em back down when we left. No mountain creatures took any anti-inflammatories on our watch.

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Small Acts

Yesterday, I rescued a nightcrawler from the sidewalk. "Get back in the dirt, dumbass," I grumbled as it writhed away from the brittle oak leaf I was using to nudge it. It bucked away a bit longer, finally wrapping itself around the leaf's stem. I dropped it into the grass and watched it burrow down for a minute, then walked on.

Tuesday, November 08, 2011


Monday, November 07, 2011

The Great Train Caper

Hey, kids! Belligero Clown here, or, as I’m known on Facebook, “Belligero Klaun”, because the little chick doesn’t want anyone to catch on that I’m not a real goddamn boy or something and delete my account.

With all the kitchen sink drama and whatnot, you might be getting the impression that nothing fun is going on around here. It’s getting kinda morose, which is like a fist to the poly-filled jewels for a clown like me. What’s my raison d’etre if it’s not seeing people happy? Yeah, I said raison d’etre. I went to goddamn college.

Lately, the little chick’s been having a rough time, so I started whispering suggestions to her in her sleep. I might have failed to mention, but I moved up from the lingerie drawer a few years ago, and now I have a snazzy pad in the nightstand, so I’m pretty close to her ear. What? It’s not weird. It ain’t like I watch her dream or anything.

Anyway, I may have planted some ideas in that great big noggin. I’d say, “Work from home today. Haul your ass out into the sun, because that’s why laptops were invented.” Or, “Today, why not celebrate happy hour in Central time? You work with a bunch of broads from Nebraska. Who’s gonna know?” Or, “Go get that nose piercing you always wanted. You’re a wacky dame. Fly that flag, toots!”

This one is the one I’m most proud of pushing. “Jump on a train to anywhere. Drink some beer. What the Hell? You’re not driving the goddamn thing, am I right?” Damned if she didn’t do it. Here’s how it went down.

The little chick and her friend Ween were out in the cul-de-sac chatting, as dames do on a Thursday in the middle of the day…

Clown? No fair. Ween works nights, and I was on a lunch break during a work-from-home day.

…which was my idea, so you’re welcome. Like I was saying, The little chick and Ween were outside chatting about bon-bons and feminine products and, I dunno, chick stuff, and…

Hey! Knock it off with that sexist bullshit.

What? You want me to tell everyone you were having a roundtable about the economic crisis in Greece? How long’s that story gonna hold water, honey? I got the pictures.


Yeah, that’s what I thought. So the two of them hatched this plan to take the train to Sacramento the next day and wander around there. I don’t understand the appeal of wandering around a place that doesn’t have dancing girls and free booze, but whatever. It counts as travel, and I get to leave the drawer for travel, so I’m game.

They go to look at a rental house for Ween, because she and her old man are splitting up and moving out of the court. They spend a little longer than they should deciding that the place is an irredeemable shithole, and pull away forty-two minutes before the next train leaves. The little chick knows a thing or two about train travel, and she knows how long it takes to get from Hell-and-gone out beyond her old house to the train station in the next town, so it’s not like she ought to be surprised when it takes forty-five goddamn minutes to get from one spot to another. We get to the train station, and wouldn’t you know? The train’s pulling away. It’s not entirely an accident, is what I’m saying.

“Maybe that’s not our train?”

“Ween, that’s our train,” I hear the little chick say. “The trains out of this station follow a pretty accurate schedule. Trust me, we missed it. The next one isn’t for two hours. Hmmm…two hours in Martinez…and we’re not driving…”

I know where she’s going with this, so I’m not surprised when she pulls me out of the bag a few minutes later and we’re sitting at a bar.

Creek Monkey Tap House opens at eleven, and we roll in there at ten after. The place smells like Pine-Sol and dishwasher steam. Ween’s in the health care field, so she’s pretty jazzed about everything being so tidy. We set about screwing that up right off the bat.

At this point, the little chick’s had half a waffle and a cup of java, and not like she’s eating all that much anyway, because she carries all of her stress in her gut. So what’s the smart way to start off the day? With a whole bunch of samples and a pint of the house brown ale. They don’t list the ABV on her pint, and she doesn’t ask, but let’s assume it’s pretty f$%king high, based on how things go later.

They order chicken wings, but that’s not much of a lunch. Here’s a weird fact about the little chick. She was so traumatized as a child, when her mom explained anatomy and locomotion to her by making a roasted chicken “walk” across the kitchen counter, that she has a hard time eating chicken off the bone. So even as many wings as they get, delicious as they are, aren’t enough to fill her up, because she leaves a whole bunch of meat on the plate.

And orders another Creekwater Brown.Ale.

They talk with the head Monkey for a bit, getting advice on their garage beer fridges and the foam situation. Doc’s trying to buy Ween’s fridge when she moves, now that all of The Chemist’s shit isn’t in her garage anymore, on account of they split up, too. Yeah, it’s been that kind of a year. No wonder everybody’s drinking. Point being, Ween’s fridge is blowing foam, and the little chick’s taps aren’t much better, so the head monkey hands us his card and tells us to give him a call so he can come around and straighten them out. Nice guy.

Then we realize that we’re about to miss another goddamn train, so the little chick shoves me back in the bag and we run back across the bridge to the station, the two broads laughing like crazy. We make it on board right as the train’s pulling away.

Stay tuned for Part Two: Hell on Wheels.

Sunday, November 06, 2011

The Way We Get By

Saturday, November 05, 2011

Coping. Coping My Ass Off.

One positive out of everything that's happening is that I've discovered that I like walking.

I'd always considered it an activity for people who couldn't handle real physical activity. "Well, at least they're getting out," I'd smirk to myself. I'd read studies that found little difference between jogging and walking, but never really believed them. How could something so simple make any difference?

In early August, my company launched an employee wellness walking challenge. My friends in Nebraska added me to their walking team, and I took it upon myself to lead us to victory. I quickly realized that our team already had a ringer in a guy who regularly runs several miles a day, so I settled in behind him.

And then, all Hell broke loose.

Friday, November 04, 2011

The man wasn't kidding. This is fantastically aromatic garlic.

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Does the Hole Define the Donut, or the Donut Describe the Hole?

People expect this kind of thing from me, and I like to deliver.

"I don't want to give you my trash, now..."

"Anita, I promise that none of them will see a bin liner."

All three donuts were gone within five minutes. It was as though the Help Desk kids could smell them from fifty yards away.

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Keep Your Secrets, Soothsayers

I saw this sign while I was out walking the other day. I did not turn right.

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Flying Apart: One in a Thirty Part Series

This is going to be hard. This is going to be a really hard month.

Our twelve-year wedding anniversary was last Sunday. I don't know that we'll be together for another. A.B. says that we've grown apart, and I guess I can't disagree with him if I didn't see this coming. How do you spend eighteen years with someone and not notice when the wall goes up between you? How did I not notice?

Everything is changing so fast, and I feel adrift on the sea with no sign of shore in any direction. If I've never mentioned it, one of my greatest fears is of the unfathomable deep.

So, it's November, and I'm going to try for NaBloPoMo again, but I don't know how it's going to turn out. Some days will probably be funny, some days will be angry, some days will be like this one. Some will just be pictures, since I got a new phone and am crazy about the camera. Some might even be about knitting. We'll see how it goes.