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Friday, February 26, 2010

Happy Birthday (begin ominous voice) from beyond the grave...

I was so close to my mother that even now, seven years after her death, I often know exactly what she would have said in a certain situation or what look she would have shot me. I don't know if I'm the only person who does this with someone they've lost, but sometimes I feel like I almost hear her, her voice, the intonation, everything. (She's still very clever and often quite funny.)

In stores, I'll see something and know she would have bought it for herself. I know without a doubt which room in her house she would have put a given item in. I can even pick out with ease gifts she would have bought for those she loved.

And so the last time I looked closely in my mirror and pulled my skin every which way with dissatisfaction, I clearly heard my mother's voice say, "You need to do something about that. C'mon, we'll go together. My treat, a late birthday present."

I had to go alone, of course, my mother's powers being severely curtailed by her demise, but go I did. And my skin now looks markedly better, brighter, less... well, old.

(Thanks, Mom.
Miss you.)

Van Davis Aveda

Thursday, February 25, 2010

University and Coliseum

Did you know Goodwill runs silent auctions for unusual donated items? Each auction runs one week, ending on a Monday @ 2 pm. Items are kept in a glass case to the right after you walk in. This old Fujica motion picture camera is pretty sweet, but the Green Acres magnetic paper dolls may be even more fantastic.

Goodwill Industries of Northwest NC

And I mean exact...

First person to correctly name the location of this fancy chicken in comments gets a sticker featuring the Shell station photo shown at the top of this blog.

Local Soupage

The 2 hour WSFCS delay put me at simplyummy just before lunch service began. I was tickled to wait a few minutes to get my beloved tomato soup with mini cheddar biscuit (not shown - I scarfed it). Esbette sampled my soup LIBERALLY and agrees it's awesome. She also recommends the tomato florentine soup at West End Cafe, when available, which she says is similarly delicious, with the addition of mini shell pastas. I'm adding it to my mental list of "to try"s.

In other local soup news, I received an Empty Bowls mailer yesterday. Mark your calendars for April 21st and plan to attend this awesome fundraiser for Second Harvest. Advance tickets will be available online beginning March 15th.

West End Cafe
Empty Bowls
Second Harvest Foodbank of Northwest NC

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Like Mr. Rogers, if he were all about pants

I'm in my home-for-the-afternoon attire, which is to say I'm still wearing the top half of the outfit I put on this morning, but I've ditched my charcoal gray trousers and black flats for fluffy pajama pants with yellow duckies all over them plus slippers. This is what in DC we called the TV interview look, camera-ready from the waist up but a hot mess below.

Anyhullabaloo, I've just finished watching the Oscar-nominated shorts, animated and non, and I just have one quickie announcement, and then I'll leave you to get back to your own fashion foibles and assorted other predicaments:


You might think that's unlikely, because it's easy for you to talk about a movie without letting slip a spoiler, but (1) it's a lot harder when it's a short and (2) I am a master at saying the wrong thing. Sincerely. Like a little piece of my heart goes out to poor Virginia Foxx each and every time I see her on the news, because I just know something awful has fallen out of her mouth and everyone's up in arms about it, and there but for the grace of thank God I'm not on c-span go I.

You think I'm kidding? Allow me to fondly revisit one of my most recent conversational missteps:


me: Hello?

Cousin's wife, whose father is expected to die any day: Hi! I was wondering if you wanted to take a cooking class with me! Wouldn't that be fun?

me: (thinking to self: this is an escape mechanism, much like the escape mechanisms I used when my mother was dying) Of course. Yes, that would be fun. We can take a class. What kind of class?

Cousin's wife: William Sonoma has them. Go online and see.

me: (looking at WS site) Oh, they have lots of choices. What would you like to take?

Cousin's wife: Anything, really! I can't decide. You choose!

me: (thinking to self: poor cousin's wife, she's almost manic in her escape) Let's take this Sunday knife skills class. I'm frankly not very good at using all my knives.

Cousin's wife: YES! OK, I'll sign us up. This will be fun!

me: (thinking to self: holy, she is really having a rough go of it) Oh, yes, this class will be fun!

Cousin's wife: OK, I've signed us up!

me: (trying to make a joke, because she's obviously in need of a laugh) Plus it will make it so much easier to dispose of the bodies!


That's right, I WENT WITH A BODY DISPOSAL JOKE. Because the challenges serial killers face are hilarious material to someone about to lose a loved one, right? Awesome. And my husband, who was standing next to me in the kitchen and heard the whole thing began to silently golfclap, he being well-versed in my gaffes.

Anyway it was quite the awful, awkward pause before she softly said, "I'll see you next Sunday then," and hung up. And no, we didn't take the class, because her father DIED LIKE THE DAY BEFORE, thus compounding my shame by a trillion percent.

So please do not ask me to tell you specific information about the Oscar shorts. I simply cannot risk screwing up. But they're stupendous, trust me. And they open this Friday, the 26th, at a/perture. Take your favorite faux pas-ista!

a/perture cinema

Hutch & Harris

Before we split this slice of tres leches cake, I ate gnocchi. We'll be skipping cult services this week.

Hutch & Harris

My oh my



I've just scanned the menu for the restaurant where SueMo and I are meeting for lunch and chosen my dish fluffy-rain-accordingly.

Local Sign of Spring #3

Bulky item collection starts up again March 1st!

Go here to enter your street address to find your setout date and here for the rules.

Go here and scroll halfway down to see a map of routes by date if you're a bulky item connoisseur.

City of Winston-Salem, Sanitation Division

Local Sign of Spring #2

Time to stab myself in the heart again!

Circles 4, 5 and 9 of Mt. Tabor United Methodist Church invite you to join us for our Spring/Summer 2010 Children's Clothing & Toy Exchange!

Receiving days will be Monday, March 1 - Tuesday, March 2.

Sale days will be Thursday, March 4 - Saturday, March 6.

Items to be sold will include children's spring and summer clothes, sizes newborn to juniors; baby equipment and nursery items; maternity clothing; children's and teen’s toys and games; children's and teen’s footwear; and children's and teen’s sports equipment.

Find the downloadable CLEX seller flyer HERE
Mount Tabor UMC

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Got love?

A very special home is needed for a very special doggie.

"Ben is a very sweet dog. He was found wondering a corn field all alone. He is completely blind from degenerative eye problems that cannot be corrected. He is very well-behaved and calm."

Forsyth Humane Society

Thx, peeps

I went to Edward McKay today, a list of books from your emails and comments in hand. I walked out with a hefty haul of recommended titles plus a Naguib Mahfouz* I haven't yet read.


(I was sad - but not surprised - to see new reinforcing bars on the side doors, though. I'm guessing there were afterhours shenanigans recently.)

Edward McKay

* If I were to draw up a list of my favorite authors, he'd absolutely be on it.

Local Marketing Genius

Posted on the bulletin board at Cloverdale Kitchen

Local sign of spring

Dewey’s is celebrating the return of Pink Lemonade Cake by giving away free Pink Lemonade Cake Squares all day next Monday, March 1st! Visit any Winston-Salem Dewey's Bakery location to get your FREE square; no purchase required!

(I madly love this, because I separate the seasons into 3 month increments, so for me, spring does start March 1st, summer June 1st, etc.)


Monday, February 22, 2010

Party like it's 1999, because it's time once again for...


You know how some things get better with age?? Things like wine, your ability to use words with 2-3 syllables, or George Clooney for example. Well, you can officially throw Madhouse into this category. The first few weeks of the show were a delight, but as the weeks go by it only gets better and more exciting.

Unfortunately, the show has been moved to 11pm, and since I am up before the paperboy, I go to bed before well before the clock strikes 11....thank heavens for DVR.

So my birthday is on K-Tober the 3rd, and, as any of my friends can tell you, I celebrate this day like it is Christmas. Since I have no shame in getting older, or in inhaling an entire Dewey's sheet cake by myself, I am hereby making a birthday wish list for all my readers: for my birthday I would like to spend the day in the Myers Garage. It looks like the funnest place on earth. I think I could just sit in the corner and observe and have a great time. If anyone wants to make this happen for me I would be ever so grateful. Also, as a side note....I have officially ordered my 2 new 2010 Burt Myers racing t-shirts online. Gotta be prepared for the season. You can't expect me not to support my fella.

This week Burt spent his time worrying about his rear end. No ladies... get your mind out of the gutter... not that rear end, although it's quite nice. The rear end to Burt's car has given him problems for 3 weeks in a row causing Burt to fall behind to Tim Brown in points. Burt works diligently throughout the episode and finally gets his car ready for race day.

On to Junior Miller's garage. I was excited to see that the show introduced Jonathan Brown into the series this week. Jonathan races for Junior Miller and is a new up and comer at the track. Despite the fact that he races for Junior Miller, I like the guy. He is exciting to watch race and his brother's name is Bo-Bo Brown. How can you not root for a guy that has a brother who willingly allows himself to be called Bo-Bo by everyone at the track?

Jonathan talks about growing up at the track and in Junior Miller's garage and you can see the genuine excitement in his face when he talks about racing. Plus, did I mention his brother's name is Bo-Bo??

Junior was in typical Junior fashion... walking around looking old, talking nonsensical and gumming Melba Toast. Junior made the comment, while driving down the road with a dog wrapped around his neck like a boa, that he checked the weekly racing program and discovered that he has won more races than Burt and Jason Myers combined. Hey wizard, you had a 25 year head start to your racing career... I would hope that you have won more races. Dope.

On to Chris Fleming. This man makes me laugh to no end. When he comes on I always think of that song, "You've Got to Stand for Something or You'll Fall for Anything." Well, Chris Fleming is standing for something... an effing parking space. Yup, that's right, the same parking space we all fell asleep listening to him complain about last week. He feels that Gray Garrison, the track manager, doesn't respect him since he took his parking space in the pits. Chris's problem is that he demands that people respect him. He doesn't feel respect is earned. He thinks that he is doing the track a favor by showing up each week. What's the favor?? No one cheers for him, no one wears his shirts and no one even knew who he was before this show was on. Chris, back it down a notch... no one cares if you race or not.

Chris is so torn by this parking space issue that he feels a sit down with Junior Miller is in order. I now understand where we get the phrase "the blind leading the blind." Junior and Chris go to dinner in Walnut Grove, NC which I'm sure the show's editors and fact checkers would have discovered is probably close to the Walnut COVE we all know and love. But hey, I can see them missing that important detail on account of the fact that Junior and Chris's conversation consisted of "Man, this strip is good," and "You know you do some dirty stuff out there." Mind numbing.

Chris decides to return to the track and park in his old space anyway. I think that we should put Chris in government... if he's willing to take this much of a stand for a parking space imagine what he would do for abortion, or health care or the economy... you know stuff that is really important. I'm just hoping I can hire Chris to accompany me to the mall around Christmas time. I guarantee if there's an argument over who got to a parking space first he would win it for me... while wearing stonewashed jean shorts.

Hi ho hi ho.. to the track we go. It's Saturday night and time to race. Now for all your Bowman Gray newbies I will educate you on something else. If you make your way to the track this summer you need to go on a double points night. Double points nights are the most exciting, action packed nights you can get. Chain race nights are pretty good too, but double points are the best. Drivers get double points for their finish meaning they can make a lot of headway if they are behind.

None of the drivers get a great starting position but my man Burt quickly makes it up to second place after passing newcomer Jonathan Brown. Burt gets stuck behind Brad Robbins who drives like he's headed to dinner at K&W at 4pm on a Tuesday. Translation: he's slow. Brad gets a few love taps from Burt and then Burt gives him one last tap and there goes Brad, spinning into the infield. Burt has claimed the lead of the 25 lap race. But, in true Bowman Gray fashion, Brad Robbins slows down and waits for Burt to come back around and rams hims directly into the guard rail. I've seen drivers lie in wait a million times at the track to get revenge and each time it is a marvelous thing to see because you know it's going to be a show. Burt jumps out of his car and proceeds to jump on the hood of Brad Robbins car until being escorted away by the police.

Jonathan Brown goes on to win his first race and Tim Brown finishes 5th.

Here's your Madhouse Quote of the Week (from Junior Miller while talking to newbie, Jonathan Brown): "You've been watchin' me run since Moby Dick was a minner."

Translation: I'm old.

I'm dranging

As I mentioned in the comments here, I had a meeting today. It was, as I suspected it would be, spectacularly long and pretty much emotionally draining.

Accordingly I plan to unwind this evening after the kids go to bed in my favorite way: by settling myself into a hot bath with a good read. The only problem is that last night I finished the excellent book I've been reading. I have a few more waiting, but my stack of unreads is perilously low, and I'm not really sure there's anything in it I want to read next.


WANTED: book suggestions. Anything, really, other than romance novels (sorry, not my bag).

Help put Forsyth County on the map!

HMdb stands for the Historical Marker Database, and it's "an illustrated searchable online catalog of historical information viewed through the filter of roadside and other permanent outdoor markers, monuments, and plaques."

Anyone can submit a historical marker or add photos or information for an existing entry. How cool is that!

Know how many from Forsyth County are listed?


This one. And while that's a great one, we have SO MANY MORE.

Please let's get them up. Next time you're out and see one, snap a few photos, including one that shows all text. Come home and do a wee bit of research, then submit everything; much information to guide you can be found here.

Veggie Omelet

I thought the whole "free-range eggs are soooo much better" thing was utter hippie nonsense until I tasted them for myself. I know better now.

The ones shown above come from Ward's Happy Chickens in McLeansville (336-215-6638) and were lovingly cooked up at simplyummy.


Got Mud?

Mark your calendar, round up your friends and family, and register now to participate in the 1st Annual NC USMC MUD RUN on June 12, 2010 at Jomeokee Park in nearby Pinnacle, sponsored by The Marine Corps League, Percy John Fulton Detachment 1075 (Winston-Salem, NC).

This event raises funds for the Wounded Marine Program, the US Marines Youth Foundation Program, and Toys for Tots.

The course is a 5K through wooded areas, streams, and open fields with lots of hills, with obstacles and plenty of mud. The Marine Corps creed to never leave a Marine behind will be honored, with assistance and spirit offered to competitors as needed.

There will be both individual and team (groups of four, must be dressed alike --costumes encouraged -- and finish together with locked arms or holding hands) competitions, as well as a Pollywog event (mud pit race for children under 12).

Bib's Downtown, local awesome purveyor of deliciousness, will be offering food for sale.

This Marine Corps Mud Run is in memory of Nick Ortiz, a charter member of the Mud Run Team. Nick is now running with God's cadence.

NC USMC Mud Run (opens with music)
Percy John Fulton Detachment 1075 of the Marine Corps League
Jomeokee Park
Wounded Marine Program
US Marines Youth Foundation
Toys for Tots
Bib's Downtown

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Thanks again

New local etsy finds went up in the lefthand column.

Thank you for supporting local artisans!

Friday, February 19, 2010

For the record

My giving up winter for Lent was a stroke of brilliance. And clearly responsible for the glorious current conditions.

You're welcome.

Have a great weekend, all. I'll be in my backyard reading and sighing intermittently if anyone needs me.

And I mean EXACT...

First person to correctly name the location in comments wins a Shell Station sticker.

(This is hopefully one of the few times I'll be indoors before sunset today. This weather is glorious!)

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Eventually we'll have to come inside

Today was such a treat.


I'm having a Vitamin D fest at Shaffner Park. God, I missed sun.

C: Come on Over, A: Alone...

I learned to canoe at summer camp, of course. On the upper lake, I was instructed to carry a canoe upside down, to paddle gently through the still water like an Indian princess (I was a member of the Cherokees), and to always wear one of the camp life jackets which smelt faintly of moss.

The last day of camp, we had competitions between the four camp tribes, and each summer I represented the Cherokees in at least one canoeing relay race, often made absurd by the addition of an element --- canoe half-submerged, paddlers sit backward, paddlers standing. During these events, I put the Cherokee princess aside and became a Cherokee warrior, moving my paddle with long, powerful strokes, paddling for tribal glory.


The Carolina Canoe Club, with more than 700 individuals and family memberships, is always looking for new club members and paddling partners.

River trips are the life-blood of the Carolina Canoe Club. They are scheduled for practically every weekend, year-round and run whether there is rain, snow or sunshine. (However, they do not run if there is a lack of water!) The Club also organizes extended weekend trips at Easter and Labor Day, as well as a 10-day paddling/camping experience, "Week of Rivers," at 4th of July. Most trips are for Novice and Intermediate skill levels.

The Club has significantly increased its role in education. Instruction is offered for all skill levels from beginner to advanced. There also are weekly rolling sessions. The CCC also conducts rescue and safety classes including Basic Rescue and Swiftwater Rescue. In addition, the Club offers ACA Instructor and Swiftwater Rescue Instructor classes on an "as needed" basis.

Carolina Canoe Club

Berry Nice

4-H is once again holding their annual 4-H Plant Sale, with wonderful berry plants including blackberries, raspberries, and blueberries, plus grapes, strawberries, asparagus and herbs. Nonedibly, 4-H is offering beautiful hanging baskets of Boston ferns or verbena, as well as geraniums, violas, pansies and bluebird houses.

This is the ONLY annual fundraiser that 4-H holds so please help support our local youth by purchasing some plants. ALL of the proceeds go towards 4-H scholarships and 4-H program support.

Pre-orders are due Friday, March 12th

Pick-up Dates and Times:

Thursday, March 25th from 8:30am - 6pm
Friday, March 26th from 8:30am - 6pm

More Information and Order Form
4-H of Forsyth County

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Making hay

Sorry so quiet today, but I'm busily making use of this weather by looking out the windows and sighing longingly, followed by shivering and wishing it were warmer.

Also I'm running a bakers' dozen silly errands and --- not completely unrelatedly --- contemplating sponsoring Esbette's becoming a notary. I really think she could recoup the notary licensing fee or whatever in no time, especially if she were a traveling notary who specialized in school permission slips. The name I have in mind is Notary-A-Go-Go, and now I'm just coming up with a costume concept. Rest assured it involves roller skates.

Local Migisi

"MIGISI - a term from the native american Ojibwa tribe for ‘eagle’. It is also the name of the tribe to which Mason belongs at Eagle’s Nest, one of his favorite places. Mason is our migisi man."

On Saturday, February 20th, PAVE Creative Group is sponsoring a FREE children's concert by Nashville-recording artists Eve & Mare, with proceeds from donations to benefit the family of William Mason LaVack, a local seven year old battling brain cancer.

The concert begins at 4 PM and will be held in the Cow Barn at Reynolda Village. RSVP by email requested.

After the show, Eve & Mare's two CDs, "Green Means Go" and "Daddy's Moonlight Alligator Boat Ride", will be available for purchase and autograph.

William Mason LaVack
Eve and Mare (opens with music)
PAVE Creative Group
Reynolda Village

One city over

We spent three weeks honeymooning, twenty-one glorious days on the Yucatán peninsula with only the barest of itineraries to rein us in. In my husband's hometown of Mérida, we stayed in a converted monastery and spent most evenings wandering downtown, trying cafes and restaurants, then meandering to any of the small, open air concerts that seemed to take place almost nightly. And then one evening, the crowd was larger, more expectant. We gently pushed ourselves to a place we could stand without blocking anyone else's view. On a low stage, local dancers wearing traditional Mexican dresses twirled and spun like the most beautiful toy tops imaginable. It took my breath away and remains, to this day, one of my favorite memories of that city.


On Saturday, February 20, 2010, the historic Carolina Theatre, located in Greensboro, presents the famed Ballet Folklórico of México. Show begins at 8 PM.

The Carolina Theatre
Ballet Folklórico of México (opens with music)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


The youngest is having an awesome week at school, what with all the discussion of his favorite President.

Exhibit A
Exhibit B
Exhibit C

It's contagious, his excitement, and so I've started feeding it madly, much in the same way I once fed the oldest's borderline obsessive love of construction vehicles. I've taken out picture-heavy George Washington books from the library! I've looked up fantastic George Washington websites! I even suffered ever so briefly from the madcap idea to summer roadtrip to some (if not all) the places George Washington allegedly slept!

Now please allow me to share this most patriotic germ with you.


You're welcome.

Most recently almost exclusively about daytime ones

Do we still have these, because in the nearly six years we've lived in our home, I've never heard word one of any neighborhood watch group activity, but I've heard probably 37,000 words about neighborhood break-ins, and so I'm thinking this might actually be a good idea.


Recently, the Winston Salem Police Department has seen an increase in daytime house break-ins. The suspects are ringing doorbells or knocking to see if anyone will answer the door. If no one answers the door, the suspect will breach the front or back door. If someone does open the door, the suspect will make up a story saying their vehicle has broken down, they lost their dog, they’re looking for work, etc.

(To read the complete WSPD piece, scroll down to the second item here)

And we do still appear to have a few neighborhood watch groups. However, save one, they are gasping for air and their pulses are very weak, ifyouknowwhatImean.

Cloverdale Kitchen

The youngest, tired from working really, really hard at CompRehab, waits for the traditional Shrove Tuesday meal of pancakes.

I had French Toast, and I'm not sure if it's just because I was just really hungry, but HOLY HIGH CHURCH DAY, THAT WAS THE BEST FRENCH TOAST I'VE EVER HAD IN MY LIFE.

Pediatric Therapy at CompRehab

Cloverdale Kitchen

Local Talented

At 7 pm on Friday, February 26th, Winston-Salem native and still resident Ed Southern will read from and sign copies of his newest work, Parlous Angels, described by one reviewer as "a luminous collection of stories, chronicling the life and times of several generations of a family in the North Carolina piedmont," at Gallery of the Arts (411 W. Fourth).

(If the roofline on the cover photo looks familiar, it's because it's the Single Sisters' House at Old Salem.)

Ed Southern
Gallery of the Arts
Old Salem

Local Circle of Life

"...a granddaughter, Margaret Pike and her husband, Dr. David Werle, and their daughter, Katie Pike-Werle, and a new daughter who is due next week..."
- partial list of survivors, from the obituary of the late Mrs. Opal Forrest Pike

My grandfather, my mother's father, died before I was born but when she was pregnant with me. My brother, older by three years, would show me photographs of himself being bounced on Pop's lap or sitting on a tractor with Pops, and I would pang with jealousy and run to my mother.

"But he knew I was coming," I'd say pleadingly. And she would smile painfully and say, "Yes, and he was so excited about you."

Monday, February 15, 2010


And that means it's time for another installment of...


Well, my fellow Madhouse viewers, I'm back. We had a week hiatus due to the Superbowl. Hey, did anyone else hear that the Saints won it for the 9th Ward? I'm just making sure that in case you missed the 12 hours of pre-game coverage last Sunday that you were aware there was in fact a giant hurricane in 2005 in New Orleans and the Saints winning the game was the city's only chance at rebuilding. Were they planning on using the Lombardi trophy to prop up a wall or something? Because if they weren't, I'm not really sure how a football team is going to rebuild a city. Anyway, don't get me started on that sob story... it was a football game, moving on....

So this week's episode was worth the week off because it was the best episode to date. We started out in Junior's Garage to discover that his motor was running hot and they were going to have to take it to a motor man to have it looked at. Junior was also still enraged that Jason Myers spun him out the week before, you know, as enraged as an elderly grandpa can possibly get. It's not too intimidating to hear him saying he is going to "get him back" this week when you know he is getting ready to gulp down a glass of Metamucil and eat a prune for lunch.

The motor man looked over Junior's car to discover that his motor was not the problem, the problem was that to save money Junior buys cheap car parts and those parts have ruined his car. It made me feel really safe in the fact that I sit 11 rows up from the track each week and Junior buys his pistons and carburetors from eBay... if I get decapitated because Junior's wheel flies into the stands because he bought an axle from someone who had 72% positive feedback I'm going to be upset.

Junior's team decided they would have to use his old orange car this week because his red car (also known as the eBay-mobile) was going to need more time to be repaired. As Junior and his 2nd grade reading level crew chief put the final touches on the orange car, we saw the first signs that Junior likes to be less than honest when he races. A manufactured carburetor was pulled out, and Junior explained that it was an illegal carburetor and he sometimes likes to "bend the rules." Junior has been known to race illegal parts on his cars before. He was pulled from a race at Ace Speedway in 2008, allegedly for having illegal heads on his car. Also in June 2008, Junior won a race at Bowman Gray only to have the win stripped because officials discovered he used an illegal motor. We were left not really knowing whether Junior used the legal or illegal piece on his car. So continue to call yourself "The King", Junior... I'm sure everyone says that Mark Maguire is still king after he just let us all know that he has been using steroids longer than I've been highlighting my hair (by the way... I have no idea what my real hair color is if that gives you an idea of how long it's been).

On to Chris Fleming's garageeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee... oh, sorry about that, folks, I just nodded off on my keyboard out of boredom. Chris has managed to take the most exciting, fun-filled event of the summer and turn it into 9th grade geometry.... my favorite place to nap. It's like you can hear the poorness seeping through your tv. Chris complained this week that he had gotten into an argument with another driver, Brad Robbins, over a wreck the week before. Brad's pit is located next to Chris' pit so words were tossed around and the teams were at odds. Chris made sure to tell us, "Nobody knows the sacrifices I make." Really?? Seriously? Chris, you are one blond wig away from being Sally Struthers. We know exactly what sacrifices you make. You tell us every single week, repeatedly. Chris was forced to meet with the race track director and Brad Robbins to discuss the heated exchange from the week before. Because of the scuffle, officials moved Chris' parking space in the pit. Chris was worked up about that. Let me explain, the pit area at Bowman Gray is like a CVS parking lot. There really isn't a bad space. So the self proclaimed "Showstopper" decides that he is going to prove a point and not race. He packs up his car and goes home. Guess what Showstopper....the show went on. I hope you took this week at home to try and think up a better name for yourself. Calling yourself the Showstopper is like me calling myself Double D.....ain't going to happen unless I go the Heidi Montag route.

Little time was spent on Tim Brown. He commented on how the fans hate him, which is a true statement. He is just not liked at Bowman Gray. Listening to him talk you can understand why. He is a jerk. By the way Tim, Pauly D from Jersey Shore called, he said he and Snooki loved your Affliction t-shirt.

So let's go to our happy place....the Myers garage. The boys were getting their cars ready for this week's race and they discussed the retaliation they felt was inevitable from Junior. The stage was set and finally Saturday arrives, let's go racing!

Junior pushes his orange car by the Myers' pit in an attempt to intimidate Burt and Jason. It didn't work and the boys are automatically wondering why Junior has his old car back in service this week. Qualifying begins and instead of using the fungified sock the drivers are actually qualifying this week. A 25 lap event is on the menu tonight so getting a top position is important. Jason qualifies 2nd and Junior qualifies 4th. Immediately after qualifying is over Burt and Jason think Junior is running an illegal carburetor because he never qualifies that high. Smart fellas.

The race begins and you can immediately tell Jason has the car to beat. He jumps to an early lead but the caution comes out allowing Junior to start in 2nd directly behind Jason. You knew it was coming.....yes, Junior runs Jason into the guardrail and Jason falls back to 7th opening the door for Junior to drive his ugly orange car across the finish line for the win.

Back in the pits, Jason in livid. He immediately throws down $500 to protest Junior's car. Drivers are allowed to protest another driver's car. They have to put down $500, and if the car is deemed illegal, they get their money back. If it is not illegal, the challenged driver gets the money. It was tense. Junior's crew started removing the carburetor from the car so officials could inspect it. I found it ironic that Junior's crew chief was wearing a shirt that said "Trust Me, I'm a Liar." You don't say buddy?

In the field house NASCAR officials examine the carburetor and, without taking it apart, determine it is good. Gary Myers, Jason and Burt's father, wants the carburetor taken apart but they will not do that so it is deemed good.

Here's my opinion on the whole illegal part situation....if Junior Miller knew he had a legal carburetor then why was he, and the majority of his crew hopping around anxious and chatting about how it was crazy and they couldn't believe it? If my stuff is legal and I know it's legal, I don't care how long they look over my carburetor, and I sure don't need to be all antsy waiting on the results. They looked like the final 5 at the Miss America pageant.... will they find our illegal modification, or won't they?

Cheaters. That's all I've got to say about that.

I didn't get a Madhouse Quote of the week this week...I am going to use a Madhouse CONVERSATION of the week instead....this took place between Junior and his crew chief:

Junior Miller: "You know what a diddle is? A baby chicken."
Crew Chief: "I call em' bitties"
Junior Miller: "You can call em' bitties but they're called diddles."

Learn something new everyday, huh?


Behold Charlie, newly adopted from the Forsyth County Animal Shelter, on his way to his new home with MPB!

I love him madly. And her. And him with her. And her with him. It's like someone's passing out bacon, I'm so giddy-happy.

YAY, Charlie (whom I plan to call Chick, Carlito Bandito, and a thousand other squee-filled variants) - welcome home!

(You have no idea how hard it's been to keep this mum.)

You can file this weather under

This cold rain has me feeling just so... so... bah humbug. Thankfully there are two glorious things keeping me upbeat.

(1) It's supposed to stop raining this afternoon and be sunnish (if not fully sunny) the remainder of the week!

(2) One of what I call my sister-friends is doing something SUPER AWESOME today. I'm not allowed to spill until it's a done deal, but stay tuned, because there's no way I'll be able to keep it hushed a minute longer.

(Clips spotted at Office Depot, North Point and University.)

Local AWK

You like your sign. We like confusion. Please offer.

Please join us to celebrate the opening of

“African Religion: Nothing Was or Will Be Except God”


Friday, February 19

7:00 – 9:00 p.m.

At the Museum of Anthropology, Wake Forest University

Live musical performances by ilumi at 7:30 & 8:30 p.m.

Museum of Anthropology, WFU

Vote Local Hero

America's Most Wanted is looking for the 2010 All Star first responder, and one of our own police officers is in the running.

PLEASE go here and vote for WSPD Officer Daniel Clark, who as you will all recall is the partner of the late Sergeant Mickey Hutchens, who died tragically in the line of duty during the event for which Officer Clark is nominated.

You may vote once a day beginning today through April 11th.

Winston-Salem Police Department
Sergeant Mickey Hutchens memorial page
AMW 2010 All Star homepage
America's Most Wanted

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Get your President On

Happy Presidents Day Eve!

On Thursday, February 18th, at 4 PM, a/perture cinema will run a FREE showing of Becoming Abe (A Short Film), from the creative mind of local artist Mike Foley. (Yes, this Mike Foley.)

It's short! (10 minutes, I hear.)
It's FREE!
And Abraham Lincoln will be there!

You should, too.

Becoming Abe (A Short Film)
a/perture cinema
Mike Foley

Happy Valentine's Day!

Behold the heart-shaped filet mignon wrapped in bacon being grilled with love by my husband , the second delicious Valentine in a row from him.

(I gave him a coconut, which was an awesome idea PRE-GLORY-STEALING-HEART-SHAPED-MEAT.)

[Begin faux Italian accent] Ahh, amore, she is in the air!

Great Local Minds Think Alike

The carwash lines at both this, my home Shell, and the Exxon next door are ridiculously long. We're all about getting the salt off today!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

The Buena Vista Garden, by Yarddawg


Greetings LIFer’s from the frozen tundra of Buena Vista. I don’t know about you but the recent frozen wet stuff has led me to say SnoThankYou or SnoMore please. It has not been a good time for grown ups to be “out” if you know what I mean.

So, instead of boring you with gardening stuff you’re not going to do until it warms up some, let me tell you a little story. Our beloved Sally, remember Sally?, was outside taking care of business the other day, when I noticed she was hanging around and suspected she was grazing (she’ll eat about anything) on some Burford Holly berries that had fallen on he ground. I quickly got her inside and wondered if holly berries were harmful to dogs. I Googled “are holly berries poisonous to dogs”. Sure enough a couple of hours later her berry feast was vomited up … several times. Sally is fine and she doesn’t seem to be interested in anymore berries... for now anyway.

Certain parts of landscape and vegetable plants we enjoy are not good for pets or humans to eat. So here’s a handy primer from the ASPCA on Toxic and Non-Toxic Plants to keep your pets safe and healthy.
- Yarddawg

Good morning!

It really is lovely looking. Still, I'm rather ready for spring.

This made me chuckle, though.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Northwest Barber Shop

click on image to enlarge

I read bulletin boards all over town, but the Coca-Cola machine here is my favorite.

Food portrait by SueMo -n- Lucy

@ River Birch Lodge

hair: SueMo's housemade chips.
eyes: Lucy's inability to pick one soup. On the left is the white bean chili, always a strong choice. On the right is the soup of the day, a sweet corn chowder which was totally pointheavy but so worth it.


River Birch Lodge (opens with river noises)

Local Plea

Today is One Of Those Days, wherein my schedule looks like a crazy quilt (my favorite kind, frankly (of quilt, not day)), so bear with me as posting will be very light.

But I had two minutes to check my email, and found this URGENT plea from a reader:

I have a question that I’m sure fellow LiF readers can answer- at least I hope so! I have lived in Winston for several years, since attending Wake, but I have not yet gained the wisdom of a true local. I’m looking for any and all local legends/superstitions/old wives’ tales about how to get labor started. I’m 39 weeks pregnant and ready for my little girl to be born- I’m walking and eating spicy foods, but surely there is a local solution! For example, a friend from Atlanta swears there is a restaurant in town where an expectant mother can order chicken parmesan and be assured of having her baby in the next day or two. Maybe a Dewey’s cupcake or special Blue Ridge ice cream flavor can perform the same magic?

Having gone completely nuts* at the end of my pregnancy with the youngest, my sympathies went out to her, and I decided to smoosh two schedule quilt pieces even further together and take two minutes to post it ASAP.

I'm ever so hopeful y'all can help her.


* When I couldn't sleep, I started cutting out long chains of paper dolls of pregnant women in profile, each joined to the next by her popped out navel on one side and the elbow of the arm attached to her hand clutching her lower back on the other side. I made HUNDREDS of these chains, now thankfully lost to time forever.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Local Matchtasticness

The awesome matchiness of this Ladies' Room at Forsyth Country Club is eclipsed only by the Members' Grill, where the tartan extends from the wallpaper to the drapes to the carpet. My club is really putting on a poor show in this area.

Forsyth Country Club

Local Won't you be my Valentine?

I had the pleasure of meeting Cartwright, and to say he is a sweetheart is to say the sun casts a little light. He is a LOVEY LAMB.

Someone go adopt him pronto, then bring him to me so I can smoosh him to me and make mewing noises until my heart explodes.

He's at the County Shelter, of course. (For those who have never been and are scared to go for fear it will be depressing beyond words, rest assured that it is so clean and well-run that it is not all upsetting. Sincerely.)
photo credit: FCAC

On the other hand, this is not recommended as a gift

Spotted at the post office for zip code 27106, aka Ace Hardware.

until you see what I'm giving my husband for Valentine's. I'm not finished with it yet, but rest assured it's pretty much spectacular.



Alert LiF Reader Leatherwing reminded me about this:

Google is considering communities as test markets for their new high speed internet service. There is a link where communities can be nominated.

Here is the link to Google's nomination site (they have a button for city/community officials and a button for citizens/community groups)

Go. Nominate us. It takes all of about 15 minutes.

Local Helpful Arts

Tuesday, February 16th, Art Tasting will host a fundraiser for the Make a Wish Foundation at Foothills Brewing.

Entertainment will span the gamut from live music to spoken word poetry to movement improv!

100% of the tips raised will go to realizing the wishes of terminally ill children in Forsyth, as well as 10% of the cost of each meal.

Event begins at 6 PM and runs until the (proverbial not actual) fat lady sings.

Art Tasting is an emerging local arts organization committed to "bringing art to our community and community to our art".

Art Tasting on Facebook
Foothills Brewing
Make-A-Wish Foundation

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Girl Time

Claire's Boutique, Hanes Mall

Because I have no daughter, A.D. and A.T. invited me to accompany them and their oldest daughters on one of the most momentous of mother-daughter outings, the piercing of the ears. For the record, my faux daughters of the moment did very well, with not so much as a flinch from either one. I'm justifiably proud.

Hanes Mall

"Could you sign my wine?"

click on image to enlarge

I'm also not a big hearts girl. That said, I very much like his piece called "Key West" (leftmost on second row here).

Salvatore Principe
Fresh Market #9

SPOON ME! (mad props to SueMo)

One of these ever-popular smily spoons in romantic red with a jaunty ribbon tied around it would be a splendid Valentine, I think. (I'm just not a flowers -n- candy kinda girl.)

Find them and other non-traditional yet still amazing gifts at The Golden Apple (3458 Robinhood).

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Autocall, 8:22 pm

"This is a recorded message from Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools. The Board of Education voted tonight to make this Monday, February 15th, a Student Day. This gives us one more make-up day, and if we don't miss any more days due to snow or bad weather, we will not need to use the March 30th make-up day during Spring Break."

Good call (no pun intended).


"Whiners Need Not Apply"

Esbette's been perusing the local Jobs Available listings recently and came across this tantalizing Private Investigator position.

I thought about applying for a minute, based solely on the fact that when I was ten years old, I had a very exciting Magnum, P.I. nightgown with turquoise cuffs which I liked very much.

Then I saw the line in the ad about whiners, and I realized my insistence on having use of a red Ferrari, a la Thomas Magnum, would likely render me completely miscategorized as --- and I'll use the scientific name here if you don't mind ---- a whinypants.

So I decided not to.

The End.

Case Closed Investigations

Local Shoutout


Wow, thank you, Deacon peeps!

Local Quotes

"DC has so much history. Nothing ever happens here."
- a young friend, via email

"North School lost three more students yesterday whose parents requested transfers for them on the ground that North has been desegregated.

A total of 65 students have now been reassigned from North to Lowrance School since a Negro girl started attending the first grade at North some two weeks ago."

-Winston-Salem Journal, 10/2/1962

Fact: History happens EVERYWHERE. Go connect with some local history in the microfiche in the North Carolina Room at Central Library. Read the paper from any date, because history also happens EVERY SINGLE DAY.

The North Carolina Room

Central Library

We come to CompRehab bearing gifts...

The youngest is convinced that every woman should get a box of chocolate for Valentine's.

Pediatric Therapy Center at WFU's CompRehab

I wept

Full-on wept. Great, heaving sobs, my feverish body wracked to and fro. The day before, I had skittered into the first grade cloakroom and vomited ignominiously into my cubby. Now I was home, my mother letting me sip on flat ginger ale and ring the little brass bell shaped like a lady if I needed her, both perks of sickness in our house.

(But I don't remember ever needing to ring the bell. In my mind's eye, my mother is perpetually there, smiling, a cool, damp washcloth for my forehead in her hand, a tall stack of books for her to read to me on my bedside table.)

But back to my weeping -

On the side of my sickbed, my mother sat stunned, unable to comprehend how her favorite childhood book, which she was reading aloud with great expression, had turned into my torment. And then suddenly, seeing how I clutched my beloved snowy owl, she understood.

"Oh, no, no, no!" I can still see her face, horrified at my misunderstanding. "We're not burning your toys!"

I rubbed my snowy owl's great furry wings against my cheek for what seemed like hours, until I dozed off and woke to find her, as always, standing beside my bed, a clean nightgown for me in hand.

"I'm all sweaty," I whispered.

"Your fever broke," came her whisper back.


Tickets are still available for noon on Friday, February 12th and 11 am on Saturday, February 13th for The Velveteen Rabbit at The Children's Theatre of Winston-Salem! Come enjoy the power of play and childhood fancy and the pure light of unconditional love --- timeless forces that illuminate this faithful rendering of Margery Williams’ tale of friendship and the passing of time.

The Children's Theatre of Winston-Salem

Monday, February 08, 2010

Local Fancy Almost-Chickens

Old Salem

I love the way they're just sort of wandering about. BeeVee would be a million times more awesome with meandering poultry.

The Buena Vista Garden, by Yarddawg

What Are You Reading?

I hear many stories from various people about the latest novel by some author I’ve never heard of or about a subject I’m not aware of. Admittedly my reading habits need improvement. I’ve lapsed into an old habit of reading in spurts. I tend to read voraciously for a couple or three weeks and then read nothing for months. At the moment though I’m too distracted to be remotely interested or bothered by the latest IN author or HOT topic because shortly after Christmas plant and seed catalogs started arriving in the mailbox. My inner plant geek has been re- awakened. Our recent frigid spell has allowed me to read, plan, and pray for spring. My all-time favorite catalog is, the always free, always irreverent and entertaining, and North Carolina’s own, spring 2010 Plant Delights Nursery. Read on-line, call, or e-mail these folks and get one for yourself.

Other free favorites are Wayside Gardens and Park Seed from South Carolina. The Thompson-Morgan Seed Catalog is always interesting and exotic and Burpee Seeds and Plants is always reliable. These folks will also send a free paper copy if you are interested. If anyone has further plant catalog suggestions I certainly would like to hear about them.

Oh, by the way, I will be reading two more Cormac McCarthy novels soon. First up will be the modern western, “All the Pretty Horses”. After that, the dark and apocalyptic “The Road” will be on tap. I recently finished reading Mr. McCarthy’s, not at all light hearted, “No Country for Old Men”. To catch a glimpse of the “war” taking place along our southern borders this is an interesting read. Murder, mayhem, drugs, money, greed, weird, chilling, and that frightening captive bolt pistol about sums that book up for me. Good read with plain, countrified no-frills southwest Texas language.
- Yarddawg

Dan The Man! Danimal! The Dantom of the Opera!

City Council member Dan Besse periodically sends out these amazingly informative emails to interested peeps. For example, during last week's Great Blizzard of The! Year! Twenty! Ten!, he was the go-to guy for the poop scoop on why trash trucks were seen a day earlier than expected in some areas.

Want to have some Dantasticness in your inbox? Send a subscription-request email to danbesse@danbesse.org including your name and address, and soon enough you'll be the recipient of monthly reports and other updates!


I have Esbette about 99% convinced to do a post-wedding Trash The Dress photoshoot at the Dixie Classic, scheduled this year for October 1-10.

Dixie Classic Fair

Step One

Friday, February 12th
Doors open at 6:30 pm
Show starts at 7:30 pm
Salem College Fine Arts Center - Hanes Auditorium

Change begins with "One Small Step", Local Greek Letter Organizations and High School students are stepping up to the plate to recognize small contributions in history at the 3rd Annual Scott Cares Foundation Step Show. These groups will do so through traditional "stepping", widely popular among African-American Greek Organizations.

Scottcares Foundation
Salem College

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Carolina Blue

I have lived in umpteen different places and traveled to umpteen more, but nowhere else have I ever been so repeatedly stunned by the unbelievable color of the sky. Get outside today. You won't regret it.

Saturday, February 06, 2010

New Local Etsy Love

New items went up today in the left column. I'm especially taken with the photo of the mural on Fourth Street; it's completely different when viewed in B&W.

Thank you for supporting local artisans!

Friday, February 05, 2010

Zut alors!

I have only ever seen A River Runs Through It in French, which seems appropriate because when I saw my basement a few minutes ago, I needed to pardon my French because of the river running through it.

However I have since decided that my negativity isn't helping, that what I need to do is embrace Mother Nature and revel in her unexpected treats.

Accordingly, my new -- and still French-inclusive -- position is as follows: The addition of flooding merely imbues this winter event with a certain je ne sais quoi. So fresh! So exciting! I wonder what new surprises the next storm, slated to arrive Tuesday I believe, will bring!

Speaking of slush...

We need some sort of LiF slush fund. You know, for items like this.

the best part

Friend Me!

Well, not me - I'm still not on Facebook and have no plans to be - but friend (or fan, whatever the correct terminology is) my committee!

The Forsyth County Complete Count Committee
, on which I serve and which I lovingly and awesomely think of as FoCoCoCoCo

You can also check out the billboard entries there (this one made me snort). You still have two days to get yours in and receive awesome swag!

First Thought

I'm going to show you a picture, and I want you to tell me the first thing that comes into your mind. Ready?

Because here's what I immediately thought of.

Someone please go adopt Sasha, because she is some serious shmooptastic, foozy-woozy, boosha-boo-boo-boo, shweet, wittle wolly-polly ball of wuv, yesh she ish!

photo credit: FCAC

from the Latin vermis

On Tuesday, February 9th at 10 AM, as part of the Tuesday Gardening series, Reynolda Gardens will hold a class on Vermicomposting Made Easy.

Participants will learn how to set up, maintain, and harvest a worm bin. There will also be a discussion of how worms can be utilized as an organic waste management tool.

Space is limited. Call the Education Office for further information: 336-758-3485.

Class costs $5/FREE for Friends of Reynolda Gardens.

Reynolda Gardens

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Just the essentials

Another "winter event", another grocery run...

The wine department at Fresh Market is especially booming; gee, I wonder why. I suspect I'm not the only citizen considering visiting - if not moving - somewhere warmer. Possibly Tahiti.

The Fresh Market

Anyone have a Farmer's Almanac handy?

Forgive the quiet, but I'm busily darting all over town like an over-caffeinated squirrel while I still can before the next big weather event renders us immobile again.

Esbette's wedding is scheduled for September. Do you think it will still be snowing and icing?

note to Esbette: No worries, precipitation on your wedding day is a good omen. (So is bird pooe.)

The white swirl is the cream cheese icing

Red Velvet Cake Batter ice cream, at Blue Ridge of course.

Local Reopenings

Hallelujah, after taking January off, Blue Ridge reopens at 1 pm today! Some people don't believe winter is a good time to eat ice cream. Those people, my friends, have monkey socks for brains.

Also reopened after being closed for January: Reynolda House Museum of American Art.

Set to reopen this summer: SECCA.

Blue Ridge Ice Creams

Reynolda House of American Art

also known as PEA

On Tuesday, February 9th at 8 PM, a/perture cinema will host a screening of Age of Stupid. Tickets are $10, and proceeds benefit the Piedmont Environmental Alliance, "a nonprofit organization formed to facilitate environmental sustainability in the Piedmont Triad community of North Carolina through education, networking and outreach."

Piedmont Environmental Alliance

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Porque así de loca soy*

We're gearing up for Valentine's now. Shown are the oldest's items for classroom distribution. I keep tormenting him by holding up the HOLA ones and sing-saying, "Holla!"

*Because I'm crazy like that.


Would you look at that sky? Beautiful! And the streets are great. Hooray!

update: We saw The Tooth Fairy. Relatively formulaic but also great. You know what movie I saw recently that was not great? That was in fact the exact opposite of great? Leap Year. MPB and I fantasized about throwing the female lead off one of the pictureque Irish cliffs PRETTY MUCH THE ENTIRE MOVIE.

The Tooth Fairy (opens with noise)
The Grand Theatre

Local Global

The sixth annual A Cappella Jam For Hope will be held this Saturday, February 6th, at 7 PM in the Reynolds Auditorium (301 N. Hawthorne Road, Winston-Salem).

A benefit for Haiti earthquake survivors, the concert will feature five NC university A Cappella singing groups:
There is a $5 minimum donation.

Reynolds Auditorium

"Lucy, do we put the trash out this week?"

"Yes, but a day later."

"I knew you'd know. Recycling?"

"Ditto. Oh! One more thing, trash is only curbside this week."

"Do you really know anyone our age who uses backyard pickup, Lucy?"

"You'd be surprised."

City of Winston-Salem, Sanitation Division

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Next snow day (if called) begins to cut into Spring Break

icicle remains

We've built with Legos, played board games, had Ovaltine, slept in, curled up with books, put together puzzles, baked muffins, drawn comic strips, and been generally sluggish. We've had a marvelous time, but I think we're all ready to resume our normal schedule, replete with outside-the-home awesomeness.

(That said, I just watched a car fishtail down my still unplowed street.)

Birds! Bunnies! Squirrels! (we think)

The boys thought it was very cool to find these in our yard this weekend. I did, too.

Click on any image to enlarge.

information on NC backyard wildlife

Day 47 of Captivity...

I'm beginning to feel slightly like a prisoner.

I just canceled the youngest's physical and occupational therapy for this morning. Our sloping street is still solid ice. I'm sure if I could make it to the main road, we'd be fine, but in truth, it was beyond scary getting to the main roads yesterday morning, and frankly while I'm perfectly willing to risk my own neck, I'm disinclined to risk his*.

The buses for not one but two schools stop directly in front of my house. I cannot see how a school bus can safely navigate this road before a plow, of which we've not seen hide nor hair.

Will there be school Wednesday? If so, with a delay or without? If not, at what time do we think they'll call it?

How do the secondary roads look elsewhere?

*It's certainly not helping that I keep hearing what sound like fleets of emergency responder sirens. I of course assume each and every one is going to a car-ice accident scene.

Local Potluck

As part of Dining With Friends, the annual fundraiser for Aids Care Service, the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Winston-Salem will be hosting a potluck dinner at the Fellowship on Sunday, February 21st.

Join us in the fellowship hall from 5:00pm until…

Bring your favorite dish of red food to share. Prizes will be given for the best red food.

As an added bonus, anyone attending our UUF event and giving a donation of $25 or more will receive a FREE ticket to the Dining With Friends Dessert Finale at the Millennium Center.

On Feb. 27th, celebrity designer from Project Runway, Jack Mackenroth, will make an appearance at the Finale to judge the Top 15 finalists in a unique design competition.


Dining With Friends
AIDS Care Service

Monday, February 01, 2010

It's Monday, and that means it's time for your weekly dose of...


Question: What do the following things have in common?

1. A man wearing flip flops while working on a car, in a garage, with dangerous power tools
2. A shirt that says, "Moonshine, It's not Just for Rednecks Anymore"
3. A man wearing a hot pink wife beater tank top
4. A dirty sock with poker chips (this should give it away)

Answer: What are things I saw while watching Madhouse this week?

Buckle up, it's Madhouse time!!!

I wanted it, and I got it...an episode focusing on Jason Myers. Jason is the brother of my favorite potential stalking victim, oops, I mean race car driver Burt Myers. Hiding in the shadow of his father and his big brother, Jason can't seem to find the success his other relatives have at Bowman Gray. I'm thinking the soul patch on his chin that looks like he drooled Hershey's syrup down his face might be slowing him down. Seriously Jason, you shaved all of your face except for one little strip on your chin? Did your Mach 3 go bad, was shaving postponed because Monday Night Raw was coming on or did someone (a blind person) tell you that your strip beard looks good? Come on fella, that's just lazy....shave that sucker.

Despite Jason's facial hair disaster AND the fact that I was very concerned that he was working on cars while wearing flip flops (hello, that's how the little piggy goes wee, wee, wee all the way to the emergency room in a Ziploc bag of ice) I like the guy. He wants to do right by his family and at the same time he wants to win. In my opinion I think Jason doesn't show the drive and desire to win like his brother. Maybe it's because he hasn't basked in glory enough...or, for that matter, basked in the sunlight judging by how pale his legs were in the scene where he was fishing.

I'm still going to root for Jason. He is really a likeable guy. His jokes are funny and he just seems like someone that would make me laugh. Just shave dude, and take your friend Brad Pitt with you.....he's looking like the lost member of ZZ Top these days.

Thank goodness we didn't have to see much of Chris Fleming this week. I'm guessing they couldn't film him because he was busy standing at Hanes Mall Blvd and Stratford Rd with a sign saying, "Race Car Driver, Need to Put Food On the Table. Will take money, shocks, spark plugs or even a Sloppy Joe." Here's the thing about this guy...no one likes a begger. He just seems so sad and pathetic. I keep waiting for violins. Ugh. He calls himself the "Showstopper." More like the "Heartstopper," as I feel my life completely end for the few minutes he's on the screen. Yup, that's 5 minutes of my life I'll never get back.....

Tim Brown. What can I say about Tim Brown??? He is the biggest (insert word that made your mom wash your mouth out with soap for saying here) I have ever met. Once again he was sporting his "I'm important, I work for Michael Waltrip" shirt. Has anyone been to Cana, Virginia? Do they have stores that sell shirts up there? Tim spent most of his time on the show this week yelling at his brother and telling his pit crew (his pit crew that works FOR FREE) that they were lazy, wrong, and stupid. To be more specific he said, "I'm always right. Even when I'm wrong I'm right cause I'm the one paying for everything." Does that make sense? If you're wrong, you're wrong. By the way Tim, Wink Martindale is suing you for copyright violations....he wants his hair back.

This week Tim's whole crew went to the Shazzam Go-Kart track for a fun filled event. The crew, having enough of Tim's attitude, decided to wreck him and let Tim's brother, Ben, win the go-kart race. Ben sort of reminded me of Sloth from "The Goonies" (minus that freaky looking face and the strong desire for Baby Ruth's and Rocky Road). He's this big, goofy guy who is probably sweet as can be but gets kicked around by his brother....or in Sloth's case, gets kicked around by that lady from "Throw Momma From the Train." Ben wins the race and rubs it in Tim's face. Tim is obviously mad that he got beat. I mean really mad. His face was all shriveled up in anger, or maybe it was just the sour smell coming from wearing the same shirt every day, every episode.

On to Junior. Junior, Junior, Junior. Send our state lawmakers to Junior's Garage for an afternoon and then you'll see our public schools get all the funding they need. Junior's Garage is the most backwoods, backwards, Mountain Dew filled palace I have ever seen. I honestly feel dumber listening to his crew speak. It is amazing to me that a man named "Lonnie" can take apart and rebuild a transmission but can't figure out how to use a toothbrush as evident by the fact that his mouth contained 6 teeth and a wad of Copenhagen. And we wonder how David Allen Coe got the inspiration for his songs? Junior makes it too easy to make fun of him. It's like asking Barry Bonds to be the designated hitter on your 5-year-old's T-ball team.

Race day arrives and we see the usual hustle and bustle around the race track. Burt is eyeing a victory as luck has not been on his side this season. He draws the pole position out of the old dirty sock, guaranteeing him a fungus under his finger nails and the best place in the race. It's a 50 Lap race this week and all drivers are nervous about the double file restart rule. (As a regular at the track in the summer I have to say that the double file restart is the most exciting thing to happen at Bowman Gray since they started the Chain Races) Burt leads the entire race, despite a few attempts to steal the lead by Tim Brown, and holds on for his first victory of the season. Go Burt. Jason gets his revenge on Junior by spinning him out. Go Jason.

Another excellent week at the Madhouse. See ya next week!

And your Madhouse Quote of the Week comes from Tim Brown describing what will happen when he goes go-kart racing against his crew:

"This is gonna be an ass thrashin' that they ain't ever gonna forget tonight."

Tim and Junior must have had the same English teacher. Score.