Poll: If Life Hands You Lemons…


If Life hands you lemons …

  • Reckon that’ll come in handy. This scurvy is a bitch.
  • Oh well isn’t Life a regular fancy lad, swanning about handing out lemons like he’s the King of Citrus.
  • I don’t have room for another damn thing. Get ’em out of here.
  • Lemonade? Like I’m just sitting on a mountain of sugar like some kind of sugar baron?
  • Are they GMO free? Organic?
  • Does Life even have a permit to distribute fresh fruit?
  • Got a nice piece of fish here. Little olive oil. Little salt. Little lemon juice. Bing bang boom. Doesn’t get any better than that.
  • Make lemonade. I guess.

Le Choo Choo: Cannes to Paris

CannesStreetSceneBonjour from France, yall.

I’m typing this post out while hauling ass through the South of France on a TGV train, the arid, hilly countryside and villages filled with sandy-colored houses topped with red-tile roofs. It’s the sort of region in which you could film Western movies and the audience wouldn’t know the difference. (Just ignore the fact that if you climb the next hill, you’ll be faced with the blue waters of the Mediterranean.)

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Barbecue: Seven Stops in Kansas City


Nicholas and I have just wrapped up our barbecue tour of Kansas City. Between arriving Sunday evening and Wednesday, we hit the following seven places in this order: Fiorella’s Jack Stack Barbecue (Freight House location), Arthur Bryant’s, Joe’s Kansas City Bar-B-Que, Danny Edwards BBQ, Q39, L.C.’s Bar-B-Q, B.B.’s Lawnside Blues & BBQ.

The Short Version
Before I get into the details, some of you might just want to know the answer to the following question: If I only have time to hit one place in Kansas City, what should it be? That’s an easy answer. Joe’s Kansas City. Some people might say it’s touristy or mainstream, but these are the sort of people who start hating a band simply because it becomes popular. Joe’s is popular for a reason. It’s got perhaps the best ribs I’ve ever eaten, the pulled pork was delicious and the beans weren’t sickly sweet like they were at a lot of places.

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Memphis to Kansas


Payne’s Bar-B-Q, Memphis

I’m writing this from Kansas City, Mo.

My son Nicholas and I are celebrating his graduation from high school with a barbecue tour. Three years ago for his birthday, we did the Austin area. I wrote about that in fairly exhaustive detail shortly after the trip. Short version: Blacks, Stiles Switch, Franklin (where he fainted), Louie Mueller, and Salt Lick. (I’ve sense been back to Austin and tried Lambert’s, Freedmen’s and Iron Works.)

Last year, for his birthday, we went to Memphis. I didn’t write about that. It wasn’t because I prefer Texas cue to Memphis cue, though I do. It wasn’t because we didn’t have a good time or didn’t have interesting stories. We did. I just had a circus going on at work last year and the thought of looking at a computer during my off hours was more than I could stand.

But long story short, between Graceland and the Civil Rights Museum and one non-barbecue detour to Gus’s Fried Chicken, we hit Tom’s Bar-B-Q and Deli, Central BBQ, A&R Bar-B-Cue, Germantown Commissary, Payne’s and Rendezvous. We went to Cozy Corner, but it was closed because someone broke into the place the night before and stole all of the meat. Sad!

Anyway, I just wanted to mention Memphis in hopes that it’ll prompt me to write up the current trip. We made the 11-hour drive from Opelousas, Louisiana today and walked over to Fiorella’s Jack Stack and availed ourself of burnt ends, ribs, sliced beef, sliced pork and some of the sweetest baked beans you’ll ever eat.

My First Post – An Unexpected Problem in the Yucatan

One of my oldest friends has started to share his travel stories and he starts out with a series of unfortunate events.

Star Wars Super Bowl Trump

PuppyMonkeyBabyIf that headline doesn’t win an award for best SEO-optimization, I don’t know what would? The only thing missing is Kardashian and “You Won’t Believe What Happened Next.”

Anyway, one of the reasons I hadn’t been blogging much is, as stated last time, bandwidth issues. When I took on the new job, I didn’t give up writing the column at work, so, well, it’s sad really. I remember back in the day when James Lileks wrote a daily 6-katrillion word piece for his own blog, did some sort of radio stuff, wrote a column for work and more (actually, I’m pretty sure he still does it). Here I am bitching about getting a column out every other week. In my defense, I totally kick ass at going to meetings, though.

Anyhoo. So the column. What have I been writing about? This week I wrote about the Super Bowl, as one would expect. But I did not do the ad review this year. No, I just wrote about surviving your $4.8 million hangover if you were a marketing executive who bought an ad in the game and, perhaps, it didn’t go so well. Also: PuppyMonkeyBaby.

I wrote about Coke’s new marketing as well, but that might be a little TOO focused on marketing for anyone outside the industry to get into it.

One of my favorite ones of recent vintage was when I piled on Hasbro and others for leaving Rey out of the toy lineup for their Star Wars merchandise. “Blah blah blah, we couldn’t be sure … logistical something … blah blah blah.” SHE’S THE HERO OF THE MOVIE, YOU IJITS!

I even took some time out of my busy schedule to write about Donald Trump and his political campaign, such as it is. This was well before Iowa. And, as you can imagine, I got an earful from his supporters for daring to suggest that his marketing efforts, while great for him, aren’t replicable for anyone else, much less real companies that have to sell actual things to actual people. (Try to imagine Coke or Procter & Gamble, straight-up calling people smelly ugly losers … rather than just implying you could be one if you don’t use their products.)

So, yeah, that’s what I’ve been up to.

Oh. And Happy Mardi Gras.

10 Alternate Slogans for (Horrible) Bob’s Furniture


Here there be dragons

All I wanted was a recliner.

Now, some of the ex-suburbanites who dwell in New York are already laughing, because they’ve convinced themselves that a recliner is something to be scorned rather than a technological marvel that deserves a place in the annals of history right up there with the air conditioner and television. But you go right ahead and pretend you scoff at the recliner because of your impeccable taste in design rather than some deep-seated daddy issues that we’d rather not get into. I’d tell you to “enjoy” the discomfort of your Modern furniture, but you probably don’t notice what with the stick up your ass.

Where was I? Oh. I wanted a recliner. We now have plenty of room and the couch and ottoman thing has been killing my back. I wanted something cheap, functional and not completely ugly. Cara thought it was all quite cute until she sat in a recliner and I saw immediately we’d be fighting for whatever I purchased. So we got a loveseat with two recliners built in because, like Charles Manson said, if you’re gonna do it, do it witchy.

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