Insomnia Friday – Thoroughly Random Thoughts

2 July 2010

Insomnia’s been intermittently kicking my ass for the better part of the last 20 years. I cannot recall a stretch that has been as bad as the last few months.

…in other news, Netflix on Demand has been a friendly and faithful companion lately.

…in still other news, the movie TAPS somehow has endured the years quite well.

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My Week in Bars…

To the lovely barmaid with the pixie cut who kept me in good beer at Fat Heads in Pittsburgh, you’re the kind of restaurant professional who makes me wish that I still ran a restaurant just so I could hire you.

To the blowhards sitting next to me at The Uptown in Chicago, I appreciate the very strong feelings you so loudly expressed about illegal immigration. By the by, I wonder who picked the avocados for that five dollar guacamole you were eating?

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So here’s a question for you all…

Recently I found myself in the company of a woman whose professional acquaintance I had just formally made after several email exchanges. After the business portion of the evening, she invited me to join her and several others for cocktails. The preponderance of the others were men, and it was evident that most of them had a more substantive social relationship with her than I, and I also suspect that most of them were quietly interested in her. At a certain point in the evening, this woman began to be less than delicate in concealing her knickers given the length of her skirt. I presume that the booze was the primary factor.

How does one discreetly tell a woman that she is being less than discreet?

How does one discreetly tell a woman he does not know well that it might be time for her to go home… especially given that she is surrounded by closet suitors who have known her longer?

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Get well soon, Tracee Hamilton. You are my favorite WaPo sports columnist these days, and I will miss your voice.

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The One Question Meme: if you could create a version of Netflix that would enable you to have short term rentals of something on a revolving basis, what would it be?

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Something you should know about drinks…

If you’ve ever had a Bellini, chances are you’ve not had a good one. The Bellini is perhaps the simplest of all classic cocktails with only two ingredients, prosecco and white peach puree. It is also one of the most commonly mishandled where people substitute fresh peach puree with something from a can or even worse – fucking wretched Peach Schnapps. Invented by Giuseppi Cipriani in 1948 at Harry’s Bar in Venice, Italy, the Bellini, when made with fresh and honest ingredients and poured into a proper champagne flute, immediately evokes elegance and sophistication.

  • 3 white peaches peeled and diced
  • 1 bottle of champagne
  • In a blender, puree the peaches. (If you’re like me and sensitive to pulp then run the peach puree through cheese cloth after blending.) Pour 1 ounce of pureed peach into a flute and top with 4 ounces of champagne.

I have also made variations on the Bellini with pears, green apples, and mangoes. The most import thing is to get good and in-season fruit.

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This post is tacit acknowledgement that there is a small chance that I am going to participate in NaBloPoMo for July… I gotta do something to get myself above my non-writing / non-blogging rut.


Winter Meme – A Baker’s Dozen on a Lazy Friday

5 February 2010

Most of the questions in this meme were derived from a series of old letters written between me and one of my favorite people (you know who you are.)  I wish truckloads of happiness for you, my friend.

I am off to go do some snow-watching/drinking by a fireplace.  Have a good weekend all, everybody please be safe, Go Saints! And click me to see the funniest Who-Dat video ever.

  1. If you had to move away from your current city, what two or three cities you’ve never visited would top your list of choices?
  2. What was the last thing that stayed in Vegas?
  3. You are about to be snowed-in for two days and can pick any non-spouse, non-romantic partner, non-one of your children to be with you.  With whom would you like to be snowed-in (real life friend, and/or person you’ve never met)?
  4. What song should be kept in case that reads “break glass in case of emergency or [insert your name here] is really depressed or being a raving lunatic?
  5. What was the first book that changed your sensibilities?
  6. When meeting someone of the gender to which you’re oriented (professionally, socially, casually, on a train, wherever,) what’s the first thing that you notice about them?
  7. If you won a $1,000 today – assuming that today is not the day of snowmageddon and you have all of the flexibility you could want – how would you spend it?
  8. A great first date must involve ____________, and how does your answer change when in a relationship and it’s a date night?
  9. Upon a final edit, I realized that this question was a duplicate of #5.  Given that I have about three minutes to publish before leaving, and all of the art and everything else is labeled with Baker’s Dozen meme, what question do you wish I would have asked?
  10. What was the worst job you’ve ever had, and how much money would you have to be paid to do that job again for a year?
  11. If you were guaranteed honest responses to any three questions, to whom would you direct questions, and what would you ask?
  12. As you’ve gotten older, to which list have you added more items: list of romantic deal-breakers, or list of romantic must-haves? What was the latest item added to either list?
  13. What is your most frequently occurring day dream?

I Survived NaBloPoMo

30 November 2009

It feels rather anti-climactic to conclude NaBloPoMo with a post about… well nothing really; but that’s all I have left.  In the last 30 days, I’ve emptied my drafts folder of every post worth posting, and even recreated an old idea or two.

I will leave you with a mini meme, just so you don’t feel like I didn’t give you anything today.

        1. What picture is the wallpaper on your phone?
        2. Putting on my chef coat makes me feel a bit like a superhero; what gives you that feeling?
        3. I am most looking forward to ____________________ in the new year.

The One Question Meme

14 November 2009

One of my favorite blog posts* from one of my favorite bloggers mentions getting a phone call from the bank to inquire about her credit card.  It seems that some shopping that she did was so far outside of her normal spending patterns it tripped the fraud alert.

She’s a sex-kitten rockstar type, so for her, buying groceries sent the algorithms aflutter.

What could you buy that would be so unusual that the bank would call to ask WTF?

 

*I would have linked but couldn’t seem to find the specific post.


Fill in the Blank Friday – A Baker’s Dozen – My Answers

3 October 2009
  1. If I was on a first date with someone and s/he ordered a White Zinfandel or as evidenced last night, a Redheaded Slut (please don’t ask) I would probably end the date early.
  2. When I’m sick I really want someone to bring me Peppermint Patties & Chicken Soup, and then leave me alone to be miserable.
  3. I know that some people really love Stamp collecting but I don’t understand how they spend so much money on it.
  4. I know that some people think I’m crazy for spending so much money on antique watches, pens, lighters, cufflinks – take your pick but I really love them.
  5. I’m so glad that I’ve out grown gloves and Shoes?  or more seriously the need to fight every rhetorical battle no matter how small since high school.
  6. I am living proof that the stereotype about left handed people isn’t always accurate.
  7. I know that it is a made-up word; but Screwvenir is a permanent part of my vocabulary.
  8. I can’t wait for the charity Rat Pack night I am hosting at one of my favorite bars.
  9. The most common misconception about me is that I am a raging snob
  10. I wish I wouldn’t feel the need to try so hard sometimes but sometimes I just can’t stop myself.
  11. If I never heard the word (or phrase) Florida State wins* again, it would still be too soon.
  12. I have a hidden talent for Identifying only by sound the exact amount of change dropped on the floor that no one would ever expect of me.
  13. I am not a fan of extraordinary rendition; but if it were to take place for crimes against entertainment and people of color then Tyler Perry should be the first person on the place to Guantanamo.

* I know that this revelation causes great pain to my dear blog friend and fervent Florida State fan, Elle Dubya. Sorry, Elle.

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p.s. I am adding in this picture because who doesn’t love shoe porn?  Terrorists, that’s who.  christian louboutin shoe porn


Fill in the Blank Friday – A Baker’s Dozen

2 October 2009
  1. If I was on a first date with someone and s/he ordered a _________________, I would probably end the date early.
  2. When I’m sick I really want someone to _________________.
  3. I know that some people really love _________________; but I don’t understand how they spend so much money on it.
  4. I know that some people think I’m crazy for spending so much money on _________________; but I really love it.
  5. I’m so glad that I’ve out grown _________________ since high school.
  6. I am living proof that the stereotype about _________________ isn’t always accurate.
  7. I know that it is a made-up word; but _________________ is a permanent part of my vocabulary.
  8. I can’t wait for _________________.
  9. The most common misconception about me is _________________.
  10. I wish I wouldn’t _________________ but sometimes I just can’t stop myself.
  11. If I never heard the word (or phrase) _________________ again, it would still be too soon.
  12. I have a hidden talent for _________________ that no one would ever expect of me.
  13. I am not a fan of extraordinary rendition; but if it were to take place for crimes against _________________, then _________________ should be the first person on the place to Guantanamo.

Sunday Afternoon Soundtrack

25 September 2009

I received a most flattering email from the author of the Skrinkering Hearts blog.  My virtual friend and Good Hair connoisseur, Megabrooke, is looking for new music for the Fall and Winter.  I was assigned to make recommendations for a Sunday Afternoon Soundtrack that would move her a bit outside of her Indie comfort zone – ten songs or three albums. I went with music that I am guessing will be new to her if not the market place.  All of these songs are available as singles through Amazon, Kazaa, or one of the other music joints.  I included links to free versions though YouTube wherever possible.

  1. Tito Puente’s version of Lush Life is not the best version of the song – that can only be Coltrane & Hartman.  His version, however, is a most danceable and romantic rendition of the classic.
  2. Gil Scott Herron’s tribute to Billie Holiday and John Coltrane, Lady Day & John Coltrane, is perhaps overshadowed by the more famous and equally compelling The Revolution Will Not Be Televised.  But the homage is, to my way of thinking the best example of the spoken word/jazz hybrid movement.
  3. Not being from DC I doubt that you’ve had much exposure to my city’s homegrown musical genre, Go-Go.  The style was created by Chuck Brown who cobbled together the remains of discarded jazz and left over funk, infusing heavier percussions and horns and the music was born.  His rendition of the jazz standard Stormy Monday still rocks my world and makes me look for a dance floor.
  4. I know that I’ve mentioned my love of the movie The Thomas Crowne Affair and its soundtrack before.  If you missed the prior superlatives or I was insufficiently articulate to propel you to listen or purchase, I hope that repetition will tip the scales.  The first song on the album is Windmills of My Mind by Sting, a song which was never released on any other album and might be the sexiest song he has ever recorded…
  5. …the third song is Everything by Wasis Diop and words fail to explain the silken rhythms that will caress your ear.
  6. I fell in love with Cassandra Wilson’s music at a 1996 concert at the 9:30 Club.  She was awash in a faint blue light and played with a quintet that was equally compelling.  After listening to her version of Time After Time, you might fall in love with the richness of her voice too.
  7. Most jazz & hip-hop fusions tend to be dominated by one style or the other and create a generally shitty rendition of both.  Guru’s first Jazzmatazz album is an exception to that.  Listen to the track Trust Me and perhaps you will take the title’s advice about music.
  8. Prince & George Clinton did a duet.  Could it be called anything other than We Can Funk?  Does anything more need to be said?
  9. I once wrote in this space that it is one of the great mysteries of the world that Eva Cassidy dies at thirty-five but Sick (typo but I’m keeping it) Cheney lives.  Her version of Autumn Leaves is, in my mind, the definitive version of the classic.
  10. Montreal’s Jazz Festival is arguably the world’s best (sorry Nawlins, your festival is more blues these days) and George Benson’s recording of Take 5 at the festival is one of the most electrifying examples of jazz guitar ever recorded.

The Fall Meme – My Answers

16 September 2009

This is my third attempt at crafting my own meme – eventually, I’ll get one really right and it will go viral… right? No?  Whatever, I’m going to keep trying until one does or I get bored.  So this is the official Dirty Dozen Fall Meme, I won’t tag anyone; however, should you choose to participate, I’d appreciate the courtesy of a link back.  Feel free to tag people if you wish.

  1. It’s not fall in DC (or your city of origin) until _____________? It’s not fall until I can wear cashmere, the mosquitoes are gone, and I’ve switched to a Manhattan as my drink of choice.
  2. Kelly Preston’s character in the movie For Love of the Game expresses her need to escape NYC because “Summer’s almost over, and I feel like I missed it.”  What do you need to do in the waning days of summer for it to feel complete? I need to feel some sand between my toes, eat some crabs & drink beer, and have one more picnic.
  3. The person I know is wrong for me but about whom I frequently think after a break-up is _____________? For me it isn’t one particular woman who keeps coming into my head when I am in a romantic doldrums.  It is usually a revisiting of many failed relationships that I can’t quite understand why they failed.  This is particularly problematic for me if I encounter one of these women.
  4. The US Tennis Open, one of four Grand Slam events in that sport, is currently in the quarterfinal round.  If you could only attend one major sporting event what would it be? I needed to do some reductive thinking to answer this question.  After eliminating all contenders, the last event standing was March Madness – preferably the first two weekends.
  5. Assuming that you write an anonymous or partially anonymous blog, by what non-physically identifying characteristics might you be identified in a bar? If you notice a seemingly overdressed guy who is scribbling in a journal or pecking on a computer, that might be me.  If that guy is wearing antique cufflinks and smoking a cigar, then the odds get much better.
  6. Most blogs cover some sort of niche – personal, political, dating, culinary, etc.  What topic, if any, would you like to address on your blog but doesn’t fit into your niche? I am extremely passionate about politics and would love to write more about it.  I do know that I lack the discipline and patience to research and document all of the things necessary to write about that subject in a manner that would be satisfactory to me.
  7. If you could manipulate the time space continuum and give as many as three pieces of advice to a younger version of yourself, what advice would you give and to what age of you? To the eight year old Refugee, don’t try too hard to fit in with the kids at that school; they will never accept you and neither will their parents.  You will have more fun without them.  To the twenty year old Refugee, there really is no need to rush through undergrad.  To the twenty four year old Refugee, please take that job at AOL; you can deal with the commute and will retire in four years.
  8. Who among your friends do you really wish had a blog because their stories, or perspective on something ought to be shared? One of my favorite bartenders would be a terrific blogger.  She is insightful, funny as all hell, and works behind a bar on Georgetown Saturday Nights which I am know leaves her with plenty of stories.
  9. If you were to take an e-cation (vacation from the trappings of our electronic world,) and assuming that employment obligations would allow it, how long of a break could you take? What would you miss the most, the least? If the e-cation occurred at the same time as an actual vacation, I could last at least a month.  I would miss the late night emails from clients the least and I would probably miss my relationships to the blogs I read the most.
  10. On September 11th of this year, I will be attending a couple of parties and am somewhat conflicted by the fact that this ignoble anniversary shall pass with it being just another day in the eyes of many (and in some ways my own eyes as well.) Thoughts? I think I answered this question within the question, however, to expand a bit more… I did what I could to embrace the Day of Service concept by volunteering some time with one of my favorite charitable organizations.
  11. How high are your walls?  Who was the last person to scale them? What tools should would-be climbers have on their belt? My walls are tiered and have increasingly sharp barbed wire the higher one climbs.  They have gotten higher in the last year and that is not a source of pride for me.  The recommended tools for scaling them: patience, optimism, a well turned phrase, a love for rainy Sundays with Coltrane and Neruda, an appetite.
  12. The sexiest thing a wo/man can say to you (or has said to you) is _____________? This tastes amazing.

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Other Lovely Bloggers Participated:

Just A Titch

Hannah Just Breath

Dorothy’s Not Dead

Life of Planet Dan-E

Skrinkering Hearts

Elle Dubya

Was It for This

The Kristen Chronicles

Are You Really Interested

Is There a Doctor in the House

Seeking John Galt

I There a Dr. in the House

Bikram Yoga Chick


The Fall Meme

9 September 2009

The Fall Meme

This is my third attempt at crafting my own meme – eventually, I’ll get one really right and it will go viral… right? No?  Whatever, I’m going to keep trying until one does or I get bored.  So this is the official Dirty Dozen Fall Meme, I won’t tag anyone; however, should you choose to participate, I’d appreciate the courtesy of a link back.  Feel free to tag people if you wish.

  1. It’s not fall in DC (or your city of origin) until _____________?
  2. Kelly Preston’s character in the movie For Love of the Game expresses her need to escape NYC because “Summer’s almost over, and I feel like I missed it.”  What do you need to do in the waning days of summer for it to feel complete?
  3. The person I know is wrong for me but about whom I frequently think after a break-up is _____________?
  4. The US Tennis Open, one of four Grand Slam events in that sport, is currently in the quarterfinal round.  If you could only attend one major sporting event what would it be?
  5. Assuming that you write an anonymous or partially anonymous blog, by what non-physically identifying characteristics might you be identified in a bar?
  6. Most blogs cover some sort of niche – personal, political, dating, culinary, etc.  What topic, if any, would you like to address on your blog but doesn’t fit into your niche?
  7. If you could manipulate the time space continuum and give as many as three pieces of advice to a younger version of yourself, what advice would you give and to what age of you?
  8. Who among your friends do you really wish had a blog because their stories, or perspective on something ought to be shared?
  9. If you were to take an e-cation (vacation from the trappings of our electronic world,) and assuming that employment obligations would allow it, how long of a break could you take? What would you miss the most, the least?
  10. On September 11th of this year, I will be attending a couple of parties and am somewhat conflicted by the fact that this ignoble anniversary shall pass with it being just another day in the eyes of many (and in some ways my own eyes as well.) Thoughts?
  11. How high are your walls?  Who was the last person to scale them? What tools should would-be climbers have on their belt?
  12. The sexiest thing a wo/man can say to you (or has said to you) is _____________?

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By the by, there is a new post over at my Recipe Blog dedicated to the essentials for the kitchen.


The Summer Meme – Answering my own Questions

7 July 2009
  1. You’re about to get into the Cash Cab in NYC.  You can choose any two or three people (from your actual life) to be with you.  Name the people with you and why? I would want my friend Uptown J who merits inclusion as the one of the smartest people I know and the only person who routinely beats me at Trivial Pursuit.  The Professor would balance the team with incredible knowledge of history and literature.  I would also take those two people because you have to really like the people who are going to help you drink away the winnings; and they’re both excellent drinking partners.
  2. The TV gods have appeared before you in the form of a burning remote.  They instruct you to select any canceled television show to be returned to the airwaves.  You do, however, have to make your case to them.  What show, what’s your argument in favor? Sports Night had brilliant writing, nuanced acting, and intriguing plotlines that didn’t lean too heavily on romance – requited or otherwise.  It was one of those shows that was too smart for enough of the public to embrace and too clever for the suits at ABC to support.
  3. It’s not summer in DC (or your city of origin, or your favorite city if you wish) without _______________? A concert at Wolftrap, movie night at Screen on the Green, late night at the museums that stay open for the residents to enjoy after tourists have bedded down for the night, Shakespeare in the Park, Crabs on the Bay.
  4. The best summer accessory in your repertoire is? My picnic basket.
  5. It took you a while to get on board with the _______________ trend but once you did, you don’t know how you lived without it. I can’t believe that I lived so long without an MP3 player – I got my first one two months ago.  Ten years ago I was also the last guy in my company to get a Palm Pilot and have no idea how I lived without that for so long.
  6. The song to which you are embarrassed to admit that you know all of the words is? Brtiney Spears – Toxic
  7. Your favorite memory of summer is? The last summer when I did all of the things in question number three was also the summer when I grilled with friends just about every night and took six weeks vacation.  It  was far too long ago, but I recall that summer with great fondness.
  8. The memory you would love to create this summer is? I need another beach memory; it’s been far too long since I have spent some time with sand in my toes, and a Mai Tai in my hand.
  9. According to Confucius, real knowledge exists in the understanding of what one doesn’t know.  What don’t you know? I don’t know much about physics.  I know enough about certain genres of art to enjoy them (classical music, opera, impressionist art, etc.) but not always enough to explain why.  I can do all manner of things in the kitchen, but don’t know how to make a decent pot of rice to save my life.  I don’t know how to deliver truth to attraction but not interest.  I know that the universe of things I don’t know will never be smaller than that which I know, nor will I ever stop trying to shrink it.
  10. What question do you wish were included in this meme? This question is not really applicable since I wrote the meme, however, I will say that I wish that the meme had been just a bit lighter.  As I write my own answers, I realize that it is harder than I anticipated it to be.

The Summer Meme

6 July 2009
  1. You’re about to get into the Cash Cab in NYC.  You can choose any two or three people (from your actual life) to be with you.  Name the people with you and why?
  2. The TV gods have appeared before you in the form of a burning remote.  They instruct you to select any canceled television show to be returned to the airwaves.  You do, however, have to make your case to them.  What show, what’s your argument in favor?
  3. It’s not summer in DC (or your city of origin, or your favorite city if you wish) without _______________?
  4. The best summer accessory in your repertoire is?
  5. It took you a while to get on board with the _______________ trend but once you did, you don’t know how you lived without it.
  6. The song to which you are embarrassed to admit that you know all of the words?
  7. Your favorite memory of summer is?
  8. The memory you would love to create this summer is?
  9. According to Confucius, real knowledge exists in the understanding of what one doesn’t know.  What don’t you know?
  10. What question do you wish were included in this meme?

I’ve Got Five on it Friday Volume VII

29 May 2009

Four lies plus one truth = Five

  1. I sucked my thumb until I was in high school
  2. I had to go to summer school after the 8th grade
  3. I rejected an offer to work for AOL in 1994 because I didn’t want the commute
  4. Despite all the trash I have talked/written about Starbucks , I wrote this from one of their locations
  5. My senior prom date stood me up

 

Five things I would do if I won the lottery

  1. Save Screen on the Green
  2. Endow a scholarship chair for students who finish #2 in their class at Princeton, because, according to many on the right, that is not an indicator of intelligence
  3. Fund the introduction of breathalyzer technology on cell phones in America – or at least mine
  4. Provide subsidized transport back to Gotham for all displaced and disgruntled New Yawkers
  5. open a restaurant/lounge with an explicit No Khakis & Polo shirt dress code

Bonus – host a Summer Solstice Party for the ages but I might do that anyway.

 

Speaking of the Solstice – Five Lovely Things About Summer

  1. Linen, linen everywhere and not a thread of wool
  2. Have you tasted the Anderson Valley Summer Solstice Ale?
  3. That perfect moment when the sun retreats  behind the landscape and the horizon is ablaze
  4. Sundresses, sarongs, and the beautifully silken summer legs that accompany them
  5. Maybe, just maybe, people take themselves just a touch less seriously

 

Five Overrated Fads I am Completely Over

  1. Low riding jeans
  2. Molecular Gastronomy – when it comes to food give me soulful over scientific everyday of the week and multiple times on Sundays
  3. Game, the people who espouse it, expect it, embrace it, and the horse they all rode in
  4. Empire waistlines – unless you’re pregnant
  5. Bar “Chefs”

 

Five objectives for the summer

  1. Play more tennis than I did last summer
  2. Avoid the intoxicating lure of the computer
  3. Find my missing pool game
  4. Make the perfect strawberry and basil soup
  5. Rediscover comfort in my own skin

 

Five best pieces of advice I have ever gotten,

  1. 99.5% of all free wedding advice is worth exactly what you pay to receive it
  2. Happiness is never overrated
  3. Candy bars only make you hungrier when you’re starving
  4. Cologne (perfume too) should only be noticeable by those close enough to hear you whisper
  5. It’s impossible to be over-dressed in a room full of the under-dressed

 

Finishing with Five Fill-in the Blanks aka the Mini Meme

  1. _______________ is the new black.
  2. Thunderstorms are ______________________.
  3. Everyman should know how to __________________ and have ____________________ in his closet.
  4. ____________________ is the perfect accessory to a great cup of coffee.
  5. Life is too short to ____________________.

 

Prior Editions:

Not Quite Five on It but I Include It Anyway

The Official Volume I

Also Not Quite a Five on It but I Include It Anyway

Apparently I Don’t Count So Well Because This is Volume III

Volume IV – Just Go with the Wacky Counting

Volume V – In for a Poorly Counted Penny, In for a Miscounted Pound

Volume VI – I suppose I could just correct it at this point, but this is more fun


Answering My Own Meme

10 February 2009

The Facebook 25 Things Meme was so frustrating to me that I wrote my own – yeah, that was a humbling experience.

Most people have at least heard Rene Descartes’ elegant cornerstone of philosophy “Cogito Ergo Sum” which translates from Latin to “I think, therefore I am.”  One of my favorite magazines, Automobile which plays the role of New Yorker to Car & Driver’s US Weekly, uses a derivative phrase to encapsulate its existence – “Cogito Ergo Zoom, I think therefore I go fast.”  What would your derivative be? Cogito Ergo ____________

Cogito Ergo Soufflé – I think, therefore I cook and love food in all of its forms.  Yes, I am taking some liberties with the implication of Soufflé in this case but so did Automobile with Zoom.  To a large degree, my life revolves around food, its service, and the libations that ought accompany it; and I refuse to resist the gravitational pull.

 

I find 99.99% of all Employment Applications to be disrespectful of the tree that gave its life for the printing.  Canned questions with even more practiced answers yield no useful information that could not be gleaned from a resume.  If you were able to add one substantive question to every standard application what would it be?

If you won the lottery tomorrow, how would you fill your days?  Life is too short to work a job that doesn’t fulfill; and if a person’s answer is completely unrelated to the job for which they are applying that is a telling indicator.  I am not suggesting that an unrelated answer is wrong or has been a barrier to employment with me, rather, I want to understand that which moves a person and learn how this job is connected to that motivation or how it furthers their cause to reach that goal.

 

I think that the manner in which people treat restaurant service staff is among the truest measures of character.  What unconventional behavioral norm or standard do you use as a personal tape measure?

Though I sort of answered this in my question, I will give another answer.  I measure a person’s use of their Sundays.  I think that how one spends this karmicly holy day of rest is a true indicator of their priorities/philosophies etc.  No answers are inherently right or wrong, all are simply information that may or may not be useful to gain an understanding a person’s measure.

 

2009 hands you an unexpected, wrapped gift with a large bow. What is inside? You then have to gift this box anonymously to someone else. To whom do you give it and what is inside? 

Katertot gave an answer to this question better than I could ever pen, however, I would want a magic pen.  A pen that could write every thought in the manner I wish I could.  I would want a supply of cash that would enable me and those I love to pursue all of their passions ala question #2.

 

You recently witnessed a Mob hit.  After testifying, you entered the Witness Protection Program.  Where would you like to be sent?  Who would you miss the least?

I have had the good fortune to see a decently sized chunk of the world, and DC is still my favorite city.  If I had to leave her, I would opt for San Francisco, London, Chicago, and Toronto – not necessarily in that order.  What do those cities have in common? An insanely exciting culinary landscape, a very urban feel, and none would force me to learn another language.  Which would seem an apt moment to disclose that I wrap too much of my self-worth around my facility with language and I am too insecure about the amount of time it would take for me to learn a new language sufficiently to bend it as I want.

The people I would miss the least is a more difficult question than I thought it was when I originally wrote it.  I wouldn’t miss the workaholic, self-important (mostly carpet bagging) waste of their parent’s fuck that are over represented in DC.  I wouldn’t miss all of the refuse-to-have-a-good-time ex-New Yorkers who love to hate DC.  I wouldn’t miss all of the people that don’t regard restaurant work as the noble and honorable profession that it is.

 

The Johari Window is a decades old personality test.  Four panes of a window are used to represent the self that is known to you and others, the self only known to you, the self that is known to others but not you, and the self that is unknown. Two part question: What are the rough percentage sizes of your window panes, and how has blogging changed your window?

johari_window5This is another question of which I thought highly when crafting but as I answer, recognize its difficulty.  I would guesstimate that the Arena is 70% of my world, the Blind Spot, Façade, and Unknown are 10%, 15% and 5% respectively.   I hypothesize that the reasons for my relatively small percentages of the latter three is mostly attributable to introspection, therapy, and hubris too.  The degree to which it has changed because of my blogging life is only relevant to the small number of friends I have made through this life as they surely know more about me than most but in a limited context.

 

Opposite ends of the Bell Curve: name something you do so poorly that you are an outlier to the left and something you do so well that you are an outlier to the right – assume a normal distribution; therefore the outliers represent the worst 2.5% and the best 2.5%

I think that I have an ability to interview people better than most others.  This is not to suggest that my style is one that would work for all people just that it’s highly effective in determining the characteristics of people who will work with my management style.  Among my most proud career accomplishments is the extremely small number of employees I have had to terminate (relative to the number I have hired.)

In addition to my difficulty with complex math, I am horrible speller.

Gimmie a couple truly Pet Peeves – nothing grand like intolerance or people who kick puppies; list something rather trivial that irks you way more than it should.

Among my more eccentric peeves: Gum chewing in public or dignified spaces, people who play their music at intolerable volumes on public transportation, talking too loudly on a cell phone, television commercials for things I consider unseemly, The Real Housewives of Anywhere.

 

The rules:

I still ain’t tagging a soul – this is a purely voluntary gig.  If you wish to respond in the comments, or on your own blog, that would be nice.  


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