Saturday, January 19, 2008

Great Truffle News

Both tempering machines are now fixed. (aside to my machinist mate: the old part is on the way to you as we speak - - - guns)

Production should resume at the beginning of the week. Since we have to start from square one, it will most likely be the following Monday when shipping is accomplished.

Thank you all so very much for your patience.

The flavors of the next batch will be


all dark, of course.

White will be only in the glorious Tahitian Vanilla, and used sparingly.


Due to incredible feedback from immediate family the calvados truffles will be replaced by the Sofia's Mexicali Spice. I get it folks, now get off my back.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Friday Random Ten

Hit Random list the top ten:

Down Hearted Blues - - - Bessie Smith
Skylark - - - Hoagy Charmicheal
Love You Madly - - - Ella Fitzgerald
You, The Night, and the Music - - - Julie London
Police on My Back - - - The Clash
Let's Go - - - The Ramones
20 Eyes - - - The Misfits
Tumble In The Wind - - - Jackson Frank
Pasties and a G-String - - - Tom Waits
How Long Blues - - - Furry Lewis

Bonus Track - - -

Heroin - - - Lou Reed.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Report on the Cause of Death for Ike Turner

The San Diego County Medical Examiner's office said yesterday that Ike Turner's cause of death was an accidental overdose of cocaine.

Damn Ike, you ended a good long run with a fumble at the goal line.

On a happier note, my sincere congratulations and love go out to Missouri Mule of Blondesense, and my collegue at Big Brass Blog, today as she celebrates twenty nine years of sobriety.

I've seen, over my years in AA, that there are some folks who manage to rack up a whole bunch of years, while at the same time neglecting to rack up those one day at a times. My dear Ms. Mule, you've racked it all up. Your fellow trudgers salute you.

I like to gently tease some of the newer folks when they collect their "milestone" chips. I will give them my congratulations and ask "Do you know what comes right after you get six months (or 3 or 9 or...)? They usually will say "No" or simply give me a puzzled look. To which I respond, "Six months, and one day."

Tomorrow, when Ms. Mule gets twentynine years, and one day, I imagine that it will be much the same as today.

Still, congratulations and expressions of love and respect are well in order. Strike up the band, cut the cake, and celebrate, because a victory for one is a victory for all.


Wednesday, January 16, 2008

That Lonesome Valley

You got to walk that lonesome valley
You got to walk it by yourself
Ain't nobody else can walk it for you
You got to walk it by yourself.

Watching this election cycle become all about "change" has really begun to work my nerves. They are already frayed folks. I've been mostly without income since the writer's strike. I've been working on improving my health issues. Me, the dentist, and the blue bottle are becoming fast friends. My surgeon is whetting his scalpels while we talk now. I'm doing all the things I said I'm going to do.

A quick update though. My friend Sgt. Major Larry, with his family will be coming up to the rez with me soon. Once there he will be given an Apache name and brought into the Butterfly Soldiers. It won't make him an Apache, but we all hope that he will find some spiritual protection by going through these ancient ceremonies. He's a good man. He is my friend. That is something I don't say or give lightly. It's even tougher for me in person.

I tend to make better connections online somehow. When I'm online and begin to be washed around by my moods and general surly outlook I can be a real bastard to be around, online, I can simply step back and away. Throw in some dental procedures and it gets downright ugly face to face. There was a question of the day at Shakesville where they asked us to describe ourselves in one word, or as few as possible. Like a fool, I asked my kids. Two out of three said, without hesitation, "Moody." Luckily I kept asking and my wonderful son, featured prominently in my amended will, thought for a bit and said "Cool." That's my boy.

But back to change. It started with Obama. He talked about being a unifying force to bring the country together. That's nothing new. I remember Richard Nixon, who I met personally on more than one occaision, talking about "a young woman holding a sign that said Bring us together." Yeah, right on that one, Mr. President.

Now, Hillary is big stuff and all about change. Okie-Dokie. Edwards is for populist change. Hell, even Romney wants to change things. Mike Huckabee wants to change the constitution so that we can have our very own American Southern Baptist Taliban forming commitees for the "Supression of Vice and Promotion of Virtue" or some shit like that.

Here's what I know about change. I've been dropping hints and stuff all over in various comment threads, but I wanted to make a whole post. Both to clarify and expand some of the things that I've said, but also to blast myself out of the funk I've been in since I heard about Larry's upcoming deployment to Afghanistan. That's the way I do change.

Almost fifteen years ago I changed my life. I changed by first stopping the wildly out of control and dysfunctional drinking and drugging that I had been doing, but I soon found, that while my life was dramatically better when I was sober, it wasn't enough. I needed more than simply not getting stoned. Too much of my world was exactly the same. Just being straight and dry made me feel like I was a very sick puppy without a lick of medicine anywhere in sight.

I went to work. I got me a sponsor in AA who had been sober for a long time. Jesse Joe Vasquez became my sponsor when he had over forty years of successful and happy sobriety. I didn't have forty days under my belt at the time. He told me that it was going to be some tough sledding, but that it was the only way to make this trip.

It was the single best thing I've ever done. Taking the twelve steps changed me. It changed me deep inside. I quit focusing on the changes the world and society needed to make, and got busy changing myself. I went deep inside, I wrote about it and talked with people. Then I went deeper. Then I went deeper still. I'm still making this journey today.

Thing is, just like the book promised, before I was halfway through I noticed that my life was becoming better. It was better, because I was better. When I'm in a meeting talking about this process I will sometimes use this example:

Before my 3rdX looted my art collection I had this very cool painting. It was a French Impressionist who did it. It was small, only about 8" by 10", a still-life of flowers in a vase. The thing that was so cool about it was that when you stood fifteen to twenty feet away from it the thing looked like a photograph. It was a perfect rendering of the subject. As you drew closer to the canvas though it changed, right before your eyes. The sharp lines began to waver and move, the focus began to blur. Upon close inspection you could see the drips, and blobs. You could see where he attacked the canvas with his palette knife and smeared with his fingers. If you moved side to side while going closer the ridges and changes in the surface would throw subtle shadows which would make it come alive. It was only in sobriety, after that painting was long gone that I realized its fascination. What I saw depended completely upon where I was standing and how I was looking at it.

Get it? I didn't change the world. I changed me. I was able to begin and live a different life because I changed. I made painful, often difficult changes. My life is better because of that.

You'll just have to forgive my skeptical look when I hear about how these great folks are going to "change Washington." That's not how it happened for me. It isn't something that I've seen in my lifetime. Like all politics is local, to me, all change is personal. Like the song says, you can't pay somebody to make your changes. You can't elect them to change things for you either. . .

You got to walk that lonesome valley
You got to walk it by yourself
Ain't nobody else can walk it for you
You got to walk it by yourself.

When I hear them talk about change, my inner voice is saying:

"You best get stepping then motherfucker."


Pottersville Under Attack

Go see

Hope things improve for you JP. You're the shit dude. Snotty, glossy, shit.