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Monday, May 19, 2014

I Am An Uncertainty Of Multiple Choices

Really, I don't know where he comes up with shit but my son can drop some mad science.

We were watching TV when this commercial comes on with a platypus and a jackalope. The spot cracked me up.

"Why are you so hyped on that?" said my son Cole.

"Because I'm kinda platypussy," I said immediately realizing this didn't sound too good.

He giggled and shook his head.

"What I mean is, people don't know what to make of me. Just like people don't know what to make of a platypus," I explained. "Or a jackalope."

"Ah," he said.

"I am an uncertainty of multiple choices," he concluded.

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

A Student of Life

I preach to my kids all the time that nobody knows it all: there is always something new to learn.

And I tell them that even at my age (and even being their dad) that there are still things in life I can learn.

I tell them you should never stop learning. I tell them you will always and forever be a student of life.

Several years ago, I decided I wanted to learn more about my surroundings. I grew frustrated that people could easily identify Adidas shoes or a Corvette but don't have a clue as to what bird is singing or what type of tree they hang their hammock on.

So I bought National Audubon Field Guides to birds and trees. Trees it turns out can be tricky to ID because there's blossoms, bark and leaves to take into consideration.

Living in North Carolina, there plenty of trees. Especially pine. Hence the name tarheel.

But the eastern redbud always stands out to me. It's the tree for me that signifies spring has officially sprung. And it is also a reminder of my ties to be being raised Catholic. You see, it is also known as the Judas tree because, as the story goes, it is the tree he hung himself in after selling Jesus out. Its flowers are also said to be imprinted on the Shroud of Turin, which, in turn, gives a seasonal time to Jesus' death.

Ever since I read that little bit of info, I have always noticed that the eastern redbud tends to bloom right around the time of Easter regardless of when Easter falls on the calendar. And I always make a mental note of it.

Until this year.

The trees are in full bloom right now.

Yet Easter is almost two weeks away.

What does this mean? I have no answer. Global warming? Religion is a farce? A cooling sun?

But I do know one thing it means and that is that change is in the air...

Monday, March 31, 2014

Chip Away

My 10-year-old is a bit of a potato chip connoisseur.

And he is quite proud of the fact that he knows his way around the land of chips.

"I love potato chips," he said the other day as he snapped open a pack of Miss Vickie's Original Recipe Sea Salt that I had leftover from a lunch meeting.

"So what is the best potato chip?" I asked.

"Depends on the brand," he said while tossing a few in his mouth.

"Okay," I said. Then I bellowed out a brand and he would counter with his answer.

And this is how he broke it down…

Pringles: Sour Cream and Onion
Kettle Brand: Sriracha
Lays: Honey BBQ
Utz: Old Bay

The best he's ever had?

"Some I got from a friend in third grade. He had them at snack," he explained.

"And what flavor were they?" I asked.

"Bacon, egg and cheese," he said.

"Huh? Say what?" I retorted.

"They were some Asian brand," he explained.

"We need to hit up an Asian market and see if we can find some of those," I said.

"Definitely," he said.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Are You Experienced?

Have you ever been experienced?

I have.

I've been to over a dozen beer festivals in my day but yesterday was my first Bull City Food & Beer Experience.

The concept, in its second year, is to pair the area's craft beer scene with our locally acclaimed culinary world. It's a match made in heaven and one brought to fruition by DPAC, Tyler's Taproom and Sam's Quik Shop

Some of my favorite pairings was Saltbox Seafood's spicy mussels dish with Founders Brewing Co.'s All Day IPA.

I sampled far too many food vendors and beers to go on a mention all my favorite pairings. I was too engrossed in sampling the pairings that I never got to hear the panelists speak. But I did make it down to the Cask section and enjoyed some Heavy Seas Winter Storm Imperial ESB and Starpoint Brewing's Weaver Berry Stout infused with ginger and lemon zest.

Of course Sam's Quik Shop serving up Founders' KBS and Backwoods Bastard couple and that special bottle of North Coast's oak-aged Old Rasputin imperial stout in the VIP section. Yummy yum. 


Tuesday, January 28, 2014

That's Just My Smokin' Soul

Romanticized memories
jog ear to ear for days
then sink back into destiny

appropriated by syn-
apses and sunsets. Loathing
and fear of celluloid truth

and pixel love. Man's inner
resources are shish kabobbed;
burnt, stabbed and marinated to taste.

*from 1992 chapbook Bridging The Gender Gap.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Gotcha Covered

Cold sweat
and teeth-grinding chirp
awaken me.

The grizzly's gone now
not gnawing
on the arm anymore.

I wriggle my fingers
to see if they're
still there                      they are.

When I was a boy
I'd hide under the covers
from the monsters.

Mom said they couldn't
get me there.
I don't think she meant
to lie to me.
It's just that the monsters are bigger now.

Thursday, December 19, 2013


my 10-year-old son wrote this poem in class based off of a poem called "Identity" by Julio Noboa Polanco...

Let them be as poodles,
Always pampered, cared, loved, admired,
But harnessed to a rich lifestyle.

I'd rather be a wild, dangerous wolf,
Howling at the moon like a warrior
Yelling his battle cry in war.

To have broken through the
Cages of humans, to live, to feel
Free of the open wild in nature.
To be swayed by the scent of carcasses
Carrying my soul, my legacy,
Running through the woods of time
or into the wilderness of the bizarre.

I'd rather be unseen and
If then be hunted by everyone
Than to be a small helpless dog,
Being dyed a different color every day.
Where they're raised, pampered, and decorated
By wealthy human hands.

I'd rather smell of bloody rotten stench
than of sweet, dainty dog.
If I could stand alone, strong and free
I'd rather be wild, dangerous wolf.