Category Archives: Humor with an h

Hey Matt You Slacker! Gotcha!

Leave an innocent comment on my blog and next thing you know… You are the story. So here is to you, Matt, just because… Ever since I added you to my blogroll, you haven’t produced a single post. You let me down. I don’t like to be let down.

Hotel Halloween
Hotel Halloween

The Shining
The Shining
Family portrait with Rosemary\'s baby
Family portrait with Rosemary’s baby

HanniMatt Lecter doll

Hannimatt Lecter Doll

Matt the Dragon Slayer, I think
Matt the Dragon Slayer, I think

Now Matt, I understand you would like to dedicate your time and grey matter to higher intellect endeavors, but come on, nothing could ever be as much fun as blogging! Whom will you taunt with your usual obnoxiousness?

One last one… For the road.

Now THESE look like tracksuits!
Now THESE look like tracksuits!

Sorry Allison! Before enrolling your help, I should have stipulated you were fair game too.

Carte Blanche? To moi? Are you NUTS?

Fair warning to potential clients: if given carte blanche, I might come up with something you had not quite expected!

On a very fine morning, Mr. Shinn bestowed upon me the honor of designing a surprise birthday gift for his lovely wife. After meeting him and his hilarious 22 year old son Blake, I quickly realized the word “conventional” would be stricken out of the thesaurus for this specific project (oh twist my arm!) Compelling all funny and outrageous synapses to come forward and volunteer for the mission, I decided to create a Funky Blake Calendar.

Some of the most “daring” concepts were discussed prior to execution, then the photographs of Blake were taken.

The Shinns nicely agreed to let me share with you some of the different months, so here we go:

Absolut Shinn

January

Le Cri

February

Blake Rockwell

May

Faberge Egg

June (with girlfriend now ex-girlfriend. Oops.)

Nenet

September

Statue de la Liberte malade

October

Yoko and Blake

November

For good measure, the month of December featured the infamous Mr. Shinn himself:

Psycho

December

This happened four years ago. Mrs. Shinn was GREATLY amused. I am told the calendar still lies prominently on the living room coffee table.

Mon six word memoir… or epitaph?

The problem with blogs is that you never know with whom you are dealing. You think your new blogpals are really nice. You exchange a few innocent comments. Then suddenly, wham, you are memed. Just like that.

My memor was Matt who got fired but they forgot to tell him. I take the poor thing under my precious little wing and all I get is friggin’ homework. So I’m tagged. Here are the rules of the game:

So many rules, so few words:

  • Write your own six word memoir.
  • Post it to your blog including a visual illustration if you would like.
  • Link to the person who tagged you in your post and to this original post if possible so we can track it as it travels across the blogsphere
  • Tag 5 more blogs with links
  • Don’t forget to leave a comment in the tagged blogs with an invitation to play

Here is my homework:

Shooting the stars

Now the memee becomes the memor. Here are my chosen victims (should they accept the challenge…):

  • Artist Extraordinaire Pat because she does not have enough projects going on,
  • Monsieur Turkish Prawn traveler fabuloso for his super high silliness quotient,
  • Painter Bonnie Luria my favorite Croatian on the whole earth and whom I knew before knowing her,
  • Traveler Epicurienne because she has a Monsieur therefore good taste and has promised to adopt me,
  • English Rose Nezza because she needs a visual project and shames me into mowing my lawn once in a while.

Voila. Don’t hate me. See it as an expression of your profound moi.

El Altar de la Muerte – A dog’s artistic vision

Living with two Jack Russell Terriers ain’t for the squeamish. Peyote did not get his nickname “The Alligator” out of thin air. He earned it. Sadly so. Dead birds. Dead opossums. Dead rats. Dead cats. Dead “you name it”, it has been brought into my house with pride and enthusiasm to thank me for the deliciousness of all the canned food.

Peyote The Alligator

The Alligator exhibiting his usual reptilian smugness

Peyote’s killer instinct apply to non-living things as well. Sadly so. Carpeting. Window ledges. My talking PeeWee Herman doll, my Pinocchio with retractable nose. All is fair in love and war.

He obsessed non-stop over a minuscule stuffed lamb doll my mom had sent me for Easter along with life-sustaining Belgian chocolate. If that doll laid on a high table, Peyote would sit and bark and whimper at it it for hours. He drove me NUTS.

One early morning, as I walked into the living room, I noticed a black mass on one of my leather seats. I turned on the light. There was a dead black bird stuffed head first in the corner of the seat. Nice!

Joyful Morning Discovery

Then something got my attention on the adjoining seat. Something white. Stuffed in the corner.

The Whole Picture

There it was. The Easter Lamb. Jammed head first in the corner a la black bird.

An artistic vision by The Alligator. Mirror images of death. The virginal lamb and the dark raven. Good and evil. Passing on the Cantoni furniture. Talk about a statement…

That previous week, I had switched to “the more expensive than that you die” Cesar cans and I guess he felt compelled to show more appreciation than usual. We have since reversed to the cheap cans. For obvious reasons.

I’m a soccer for love!

“Wayne Rooney? Oh yeah. Manchester United right? That’s the brat who stepped on Carvalho’s testes during the last World Cup.” And that’s how you leave a man flabbergasted by your awesome knowledge of soccer!

I once dated a soccer nut. One of the few things he left me (besides an irreparable crushed heart) was a collection of random sport facts.

He lived in DC. I lived in Dallas. Probably not the best premise for a love story nevertheless we tried to keep it entertaining (which meant a lot of efforts on my part and a lot of cheating on his…)

On a dreary winter day, a Saturday, a bummed out D. had to spend the whole day at his office. Working on a Saturday feels great when you are a photographer, not so much when you are an investment banker! So I decided to open up and tell him about my previous career as a famous soccer player.

This is what I sent him (because I’m silly and hardly ever take myself seriously.)

“I have a big confession to make and I hope you will forgive my secrecy. I have not always been a manager, private investigator, interpretor, voice-over, photographer… I was actually a VERY famous soccer player. I could not tell you before because I did not want you to like me for my sport abilities. I wanted you to see the woman in me, not the athlete. Yes, With an H, that was me. Great career. Over many decades. Then I had to retire my European career amidst scandal. I’m not proud of it. I’m sure that right now, you are somewhat hesitant to believe me so I will pepper your day with many proofs.

This is the first proof. A picture of me as a proud soccer player, with my favorite ball. Forgive the quality of the photograph, it is quite ancient.

A proud soccer player

The following is a photograph with Zito from Brazil (I played for Brazil sometimes) when I made a pass at him and he scored against Czechoslovakia! We were elated!

Goal with Zito

Playing for France was a great opportunity for me. They bought me from Brazil. Muito dinheiro!

Playing against Brazil

Playing for Brazil one day, against Brazil the next…

Equipe de France

Playing with France gave me the opportunity to study their great players’ weakest points. When years later, I played against Capocannoniere Michel Platini, I knew exactly what to do to divert his attention from the ball.

Against Platini

This brilliant move got me knee-deep in trouble!

Carton Jaune

My methods were modern. They were not always very well accepted by my peers.

Pants grabbing

This move also was a tad innovative for the period. After my yellow card from last time, they gave me a bright red one this time. I protested. Vehemently.

A sit-in

Check out the idiot referee! Threatening to pull something out from his pocket. What was he going to give me this time? A purple card? Anyway… It would be a fair assessment to say that things went south for me after that game.

The scandal

I recognize now that this move may have been just a tad ahead of its time (even if soccer rules do not specifically prohibit the use of a Tintin umbrella on the field.) The European clubs wanted nothing to do with me after that scandal. I had to move to the States.

Training with the US team

Now I have tea with Beck and Vic. My life is more peaceful.”

The things we do for love…

Gege, Barbecue Warrior

The other day, I discovered my cousin Gege from Brussels was a barbecue warrior. I had never met one before. I feel honored we dispose of such hidden talents in the family.

Barbecue Warrior II

Concentration

Barbecue warrior attack

Attack

Barbecue warrior salute

Victory

And just to show that the apple did not fall far from the tree as far as emoting goes, this is the son of the Barbecue Warrior, Nicolas:

Son of Barbecue Warrior

We are a family with character.

Polyamorous Jenny

Never was I better reminded not to judge a book by its cover than when I met Jenny Block in St. Croix. My first impressions of her were conservative, conservative, and ooh how conservative! Married, one child, a regular collaborator to the Dallas Morning News, low heels and skirt under the knee, Jenny exemplified in my mind the typical middle class conservative working mom from Texas.

During a visit to Sonya, a well-known jewelry store on the Island, Jenny got surrounded by a flock of charming gay men vying to advise her on her bracelet purchase.

The Advisors

The Advisors

They inquired:

“Is the bracelet for you?”

“One is for me, the other for my girlfriend.” She replied.

“Your girlfriend-girlfriend?”

“Yes, my girlfriend-girlfriend.”

Sensing a monumental misunderstanding, I volunteered:

“No, no, not a girlfriend-girlfriend! Just a girlfriend. She is married.”

And Jenny turned to me and very calmly pointed out:

“Yes I’m married. I have a husband… AND a girlfriend.”

Jenny Block’s new book on polyamory, “Open: Love, Sex and Life in an Open Marriage” hits the bookstores in June. She has also just landed a Blog spot on Huffington Post. As for me, I’m humbled and after meeting this force of nature, feeling pretty conservative these days… What can I say? A husband AND a girlfriend? That seems like an awful lot of work!

Jenny Block in St. Croix

Bill Clinton’s sabotage

“Bill daaahlin’, I decided to surprise you with a nice long vacation in the South Pacific. It’s really pretty in Moorea this time of year, and you can repair our relations with the French while you are there and that should take you at the very least two months.

Here is some money for a pareo and pina coladas with little umbrellas. If you send me a postcard, I’ll make sure to frame it. Au revoir!”

If I were Hillary, I would have exiled the man a long time ago.

Clinton photo montage

Ever since January when Bill Clinton re-injected race into the campaign despite recent party bigwig pleas not to do so (the Jesse Jackson comment), I have been wondering about his motives (incidentally, Ted Kennedy endorsed Obama a few days later.) Does Bill Clinton really want to be the spouse of the Decider-in-chief? Does he really want to run the risk of his spouse turning into a better president than he once was?

Bill sitting on Hillary - montage

When during a speech, Bill Clinton not only disinters the subject of Bosnia, but also brings up the fact that Hillary is sixty, and that “when they (the reporters) are sixty, they will forget something when they are tired at 11 o’clock at night too”, what logically comes to mind is the question of what happens to a sixty year old at 3 am if she can’t handle 11 pm. You know: that phone call.

I just don’t buy the whole white knight in shining armor routine. I think he is out to get her. Consciously or not. Not that I care one way or the other, but I can’t help but question.

Glutton for Punishment

My friend Mike either assumes his past really well OR he belongs to that group of folks who thrive on self-inflicted pain. Either way, if you dig up pictures of yourself in the seventies, dressed like a clown, and duly mulleted, you should consider not sharing this information with your friends. A twisted mind like mine might just swipe the photograph and distribute business card-sized refrigerator magnets to all your buddies.

Mike Daniel, a business card

How could I possibly resist?

Coming to America (Eddie Murphy will forgive me)

The Wall of Berlin fell and I moved to Arlington, Texas. While these two events appear in no way related, it just proves that timing is everything, and that I truly have no sense of good timing.

Fresh out of college, a communication degree in my pocket, I surmised that my academic knowledge of the English language, the very fine distinction between shall and will, and the proper use of who or whom, would no doubt open the golden doors of the corporate world. I was not expecting the Mayor to deliver the keys on a red velvet pillow but, still, I was not prepared for a trial by fire and I ended up roasted like a Cuban piglet on Christmas eve.

So I ask: how does America prepare its naïve French-speaker emigrants for life in Texas? Well, first of all, America lets you buy a car with no A/C (proper tourist etiquette would dictate the posting of warning signs all over DFW airport informing you of the dangers of life without A/C in Texas) then America sends you to Olive Garden to learn that new exotic language, English with a twang and never-heard-off-before weird expressions, by singing birthday songs to garlic breadstick hungry patrons.

My (translated) diary entry for Thursday, March 21, 1991 reads:

“Had interview with Mister Pineault (sic), the director of Olive Garden, an Italian restaurant in Arlington. Wore the shiny black plastic suit with the silver heeled patent leather boots. Mister Pineault (sic) said he had never seen anyone dressed like that before but I think he liked it. I could not understand much of anything he said but I think he will give the job.”

They hired me. Big mistake. One would never associate Olive Garden with a bastion of progessive fashion but there you have it. I am the living proof. BUT I know in my heart I turned out to be to worst waitress to have ever graced the soil of Texas. It even took me months to realize there was more than one Olive Garden Restaurant. You should never pick a waitress based on her funky outfit, especially one who does not respond well to the English language.

First Performance Evaluation. First and Last.

Today, the shiny plastic suit is a distant memory (which pretty much belongs in the same shameful bag as mullets and leg warmers.) The suit was recently found in a corner of my garage, a sticky pile of gooey mess which looked as if “someone” had given it the dryer treatment. With fifteen years gone by, I can look back and smile at the whole Olive Garden experience, forgetting about the six months I reeked of tomato sauce, the nightmares about being the only waitress working the floor on a Friday night, all the times I brought out the wrong dishes to customers who nasally challenged my comprehension of the English language, and the multiple occasions where I happened to drop red sauce entrees on unsuspecting patron’s laps. Actually, come to think of it, it remains frightening.

Still I smile at the good times: wonderful Monsieur Pineault who ended up leaving the restaurant with a pregnant waitress half his age, the legendary Richard who may or may not have dipped his nether parts in an obnoxious client’s cocktail, my first bachelorette party at Le Bare (quite enlightening on many levels), and Mysti, a funny red-head and a very dear friend whose pregnancy, years later, magically opened the doors of private investigation for me (but that’s another story.) Anyway, the minute I mastered the usage of y’all, all y’all, and fixin’ to, I left Olive Garden.

The other day, I drove by the restaurant on I-30 for the first time in 10 years. The building was razed. I unexpectedly felt overwhelmed by a wave of melancholy. Still, I am not planning on ever eating another garlic breadstick in my life.