iPad Pro — making it magic

I bought the iPad Pro and the Apple Pen­cil with the inten­tion of doing all the art­work for the col­or­ing book on it, that was my inten­tion at least

Ulti­mate­ly I end­ed up using a piece of Japan­ese man­ga soft­ware that has spec­tac­u­lar stroke sta­bi­liza­tion so I could use a sty­lus but get smooth vec­tor lines. Noth­ing on the ipad came close at the time. I bought it — used it for a few days and then because I had to get the col­or­ing book done, put it in a box for 5 months — on Octo­ber 1st — I took it out and have used it almost dai­ly since -

I know peo­ple who use it in place of a lap­top, but it real­ly depends on what you do on a dai­ly basis — If you do tons of file man­age­ment then it’s not great at that - but if you sketch and deal with cal­en­dars, emails etc. it’s excel­lent.

Hardware

Few things that I now know about the iPad Pro that are not crys­tal clear when I bought it

  • The Charg­er and cable they ship with aren’t USB-C — and it take a mil­lion years to charge on the pro­vid­ed charg­er and cable, the one you actu­al­ly want are sold sep­a­rate­ly by Apple here, the cable is here — they add anoth­er 100 bucks to the price, but you real­ly can’t do with­out them
  • The Apple Pen­cil charges from the firewire port on the iPad pro, mean­ing you can’t charge both at the same time — it charges rea­son­ably fast but while you have the rigid pen­cil stick­ing out of the ipad pro it’s SUPER EASY to bump it and poten­tial­ly break one or either — this giz­mo — makes charg­ing the pen­cil eas­i­er and safer
  • The Apple Pen­cil is slip­pery, i bought this, it helped a ton

Software

I real­ly only use three draw­ing apps on my iPad none are par­tic­u­lar­ly expen­sive

  • Pro­cre­ate: my main tool, it’s love­ly to work in, took about 8 hours to get ful­ly accli­mat­ed, doe hi-rez art — all pix­el based
  • Sketch­es Plus: nice tools — but doesn’t do any­thing big­ger than screen­rez — pret­ty nice for some quick ideas though
  • Con­cepts: — Odd but pow­er­ful vec­tor based draw­ing and draft­ing, can do any­thing but they kind of nick­el and dime you to unlock every­thing plus the learn­ing curve is sub­stan­tial­ly steep

Last­ly Adobe has a bunch of tools, but you need to be a cur­rent Cre­ative Cloud Sub­scriber to real­ly ben­e­fit from any of them — I’m no longer using their cur­rent soft­ware so I don’t use those tools — I’m sure they’re decent.

You’ll prob­a­bly want a way to car­ry your ipad around — I bought the apple smart cov­er with key­board because when I bought my iPad it was the best choice at the time — now there’s a ton of choic­es, assum­ing you don’t want a key­board I would prob­a­bly con­sid­er a padded pouch — The key­board is fine — I just tend to answer emails from my phone with my thumbs

If you have a use for it the iPad Pro- it’s a great tool, I love mine.

Hot cup of God

I want to start this entry by apol­o­giz­ing, in advance, if you’re of strong reli­gious back­ground, maybe some nice porn will offend you less, thanks for com­ing though

Hal­loween approach­es, a time for pow­er­puff girls, and snick­ers bars, at least I thought so, seems a church not 3 min­utes from my house has oth­er plans, see the only thing THEY know about hal­loween is that it’s a pagan hol­i­day, and there­fore assum­ing christ wouldn’t have approved, flash­back to the first Hal­loween: Christ knock­ing on doors, pil­low­case in hand look­ing for jugs of water to bring to the keg­ger down by the sphinx

Now I don’t dis­like this church sole­ly for there stand against indi­vid­u­al­ly sized milky way bars, no I have two oth­er rea­sons to dis­like them; rea­son one; they have a Star­bucks IN THE CHURCH, I’m absolute­ly not exag­ger­at­ing this at all rea­son two; The bath­rooms in the before­men­tioned Star­bucks are open to cus­tomers only, no you don’t have to be a parish­ioner, but you do have to at least buy a cook­ie, if you have to use the bath­room. so much for chris­t­ian char­i­ty.

So I’ve been a Star­buck cus­tomer a few times, hey some­times you have to go, the few time I’ve been there, I’ve made it a point to ‘test’ the bound­ries a bit. It seems com­ments like “jesus, that coffee’s hot” and “god damn that cake is deli­cious” are per­fect­ly fine with­in ‘gods’ bean­ery, but try to walk with your cof­fee, or soy lat­tee chia in my case, into the chapel, well, let’s just say the mon­sign­or has no sense of humor.

me: hey there father, how’s god today?

the col­lar: ummm yeah, you can’t bring that bev­er­age into the church. 

me: but I bought it here, did I miss a sign? 

the col­lar: son, this is house of wor­ship, a place of faith, we ask that all bev­er­ages stay in the cof­fee shop

me: father, when you say ‘WE’ does that include god?

the col­lar: I guess in a man­ner of speak­ing it does 

me: so GOD is ask­ing me to drink my cof­fee in the Star­bucks?, silence… at this point I was glad I was wear­ing sneak­ers, because I ful­ly expect­ed a light­ning bolt to roast my beans on the spot

the col­lar: I don’t real­ly appre­ci­ate your atti­tude or your tone, jesus christ I’ve pissed off a priest, I thought for­give­ness was in the job descrip­tion

me: I cer­tain­ly don’t want to piss you off

the col­lar: is the vul­gar­i­ty real­ly nec­es­sary? this is a church after all

me: father, we’re all alone here, are you seri­ous­ly telling me you’re offend­ed by the word ‘piss’?

the col­lar: We’re not alone here, we’re nev­er alone any­where [I cut him off at this point, we’d reached a line even I wasn’t will­ing to cross, I’ll not fuck with the dude’s beliefs, if he want to believe that god is tru­ly a holy spir­it with­in the church walls, and that god is the breeze blow­ing through the trees, well then, who am I to say he isn’t]

I mean I only went in to use the bath­room any­how. As I walked away he screamed after me “BLESS YOU!” … darn, I was pos­i­tive that wasn’t the verb he was going to use.

So any­way, I think I, going back for Hal­loween, maybe dressed as the Pope, stay tuned for part 2: ‘what no can­dy?

Eye don’t know

So yes­ter­day ‘T’ and myself went and had our eyes checked and pur­chased new glass­es,

I elect­ed to get a pair of black wire­frame, and a pair of geek chic black plas­tic, some­one should real­ly let calvin klein know that the dot com boom is over, because 250 bucks for two hinges and some mold­ed plas­tic is insane, or per­haps it’s me that’s insane for pay­ing it.. but I have large eyes and a apple shaped head and most frames look stu­pid on me, the frames plus my 300+ dol­lar lens­es, the hub­ble tele­scope has weak­er lens­es, put me over 900 bucks for two pairs of glass­es. I can’t help but won­der what I would do if I couldn’t afford that [Not that i can, mind you, but real­ly if I couldn’t afford even the lens­es, what do peo­ple do? Does pub­lic assis­tance pay for opti­cal care? and to what point?

dream sequence com­ing:

Mis­ter Rosen­baum, with your opti­cal cov­er­age we can only adjust your vision to 20/75 and only in one eye, So you can for­get about that fan­cy-pants graph­ics career”

dream sequence con­clud­ed

The absolute worst part of buy­ing glass­es is that of course while your try­ing on the frames you can’t see your­self in the mir­ror, at least I can’t being near­sight­ed

So your forced to trust your shop­ping com­pan­ion, or you’re at the mer­cy of the glass­es peo­ple, and if that’s the case I can only assume you’ll ALWAYS look bet­ter in the 250 dol­lar frames… sigh, I hate spend­ing mon­ey, I’m just so darn good at it.

T’ bought a real­ly hot pair of librar­i­anesqe ‘cat’ glass­es, she usu­al­ly only wears her glass­es at night after her con­tacts come out, but she looked so very delec­table in these frames I wouldn’t mind if she wore them full-time.

Run bunny, run

So I was look­ing out my stu­dio win­dow — and two lit­tle girls from up the block are fran­ti­cal­ly chas­ing a tiny bun­ny — my imme­di­ate thought is, they put their bun­ny down — and now they’ll nev­er catch it — so, being a world-class pro­cras­ti­na­tor — I hopped out­side to see if I could help catch the way­ward bun­ny — it because pret­ty obvi­ous after 30 sec­onds of talk­ing with the girls that

  • This wasn’t their bun­ny.
  • This was a wild bun­ny.
  • That the bun­ny wasn’t real­ly inter­est­ed in the car­rot they were wav­ing about — all this bun­ny want­ed to do was escape.
  • They didn’t real­ly have a plan for what to do with the bun­ny if they actu­al­ly man­aged to catch it.
  • Nei­ther was too keen on end­ing up at the emer­gency room for rab­bit bites (which I assured them hurt much worse than the shots they’d need to get)

They both agreed to let the bun­ny go — to nev­er chase wild bun­nies again — and they also agreed that the 185 lb. pig that lived next door didn’t run near­ly as fast as the bun­ny — and prob­a­bly didn’t bite.

As he ran away — the rab­bit looked back at me and (smiled?) I remind­ed him — I’m not his friend, I’m the guy who feeds the TOP of the neigh­bor­hood food chain — but if he want­ed to pitch a tent in my FRONT yard — I could prob­a­bly find him some food and shel­ter.

Sleep Number

The oth­er day I stopped in a ‘fan­cy-pants-bed’ place that fea­tures beds with air blad­ders in them so you can make the bed as soft or as hard as you like, the left and right side are adjustable inde­pen­dent­ly, so you needn’t suf­fer through the ‘goldilocks’ syn­drome just because of your bed­mates pref­er­ence.

I laid myself out on this bed picked up the remote con­trol and start­ed push­ing away…25 – 35-45 — all seemed the same to me — 50 – 55-60 – 65 okay now we’re cook­ing, the bed seems kin­da firmer, hard even, so the sales­man comes over “blah, blah, blah…digital…normal people’s sleep num­ber is usu­al­ly between 15 & 35…blah, blah, blah”

I swear I did a spit-take, nor­mal peo­ple?, I let the ques­tion hang there, “ya know, ever day folks, they’re usu­al­ly between 15 & 35”, I glanced at the con­troller in my hand that read 72,  if you were to base my nor­mal­i­ty pure­ly on my sleep num­ber I’m a lit­tle over twice as not nor­mal as those oth­er folks…

As much as I love num­bers, I think using num­bers in this instance is rather unimag­i­na­tive — why not use metaphor­ic sym­bols?

Hi my Name is Bill.. I’m a con­struc­tion work­er by day and a pro­fes­sion­al don­key wrestler at night..and everynight I sleep on a mat­tress as soft as a lambs behind.

I think that’s an improvement..don’t you?, and why 1 through 100, it only felt like there might have been 5 dif­fer­ent per­ceiv­able set­tings; painful­ly soft, too soft, uncom­fort­able, not hard enough and too hard, but then again, I’m not nor­mal.

20 years and a damn fine meal

For the past few weeks Tru­di­ann and I have been cel­e­brat­ing our 20th wed­ding anniver­sary, we’ve been a num­ber of places — San Fran­cis­co, Mon­terey, Carmel, Death Val­ley, and we’re wrap­ping up in Las Vegas — we love Vegas — it’s been our go-to spot for the last 10 years or so — we loose­ly planned a few events, bought some show tick­ets, and made some reser­va­tions at some notable eater­ies.

Yes­ter­day we had lunch at Bob­by Flay’s Mesa Grill, we’d been there for din­ner in the past — and we always enjoy it — the menu is a fes­ti­val of pow­er­ful and potent south­west fla­vor com­bi­na­tions — Mesa’s pric­ing is afford­able and the ser­vice is atten­tive but not pushy — for us it’s a no-brain­er.

As our post Elvis wed­ding din­ner we went to Craft Steak­house. Hon­est­ly, words almost escape me as to the qual­i­ty of this meal, the Craft menu is an Ala-carte menu fea­tur­ing the finest beefs (Japan­ese Waygu Beef, Aus­tralian & Amer­i­can Kobe Beef), sea­son­al veg­eta­bles, and exot­ic mush­rooms — I should note I’m not a fan of ala-carte menu’s because I like the chef to pair my entree’s with veg­eta­bles to their palettes — I dis­cov­er new tastes in the process — lucky for me Tru­di­ann sug­gest­ed we order the chef’s ‘Surf & Turf’ tast­ing menu and get a taste of all that Craft had to offer. What a great sug­ges­tion; the chef start­ed us off with 

  • Kobe Beef Tartare
  • Romaine Hearts “Cae­sar” (with pick­led anchovies)
  • Hawai­ian Prawns 

I should qual­i­fy this by say­ing up until VERY recent­ly Tru­di­ann hasn’t been what I would call an adven­tur­ous eater, tartare and cae­sar sal­ad both fall well out­side of her com­fort zone. 

All three starters where amaz­ing — the tartare (with quail egg) was per­fect­ly bal­anced, the tex­ture was smooth and the por­tion was more than enough to thor­ough­ly enjoy this rare treat (excel­lent pun if I must say) — the cae­sar  was real­ly nice, the per­fect­ly min­i­mal dress­ing clung to the leaves which were crisp and tasty — the pick­led anchovy gar­nish was a nice twist on the lit­tle fish and made the whole dish a bit spe­cial. the prawns — tasty glazed grilled good­ness, Tru­di­ann loves prawns and we thor­ough­ly enjoyed these.

Next the chef sent out the entrees & sides– 

  • NY Strip Steak
  • Kobe Skirt Steak
  • Lob­ster in but­ter and Tar­ragon
  • Aspara­gus with Rose­mary
  • Whipped Potato’s with Chives
  • A selec­tion of 5 japan­ese mush­rooms includ­ing, Hen of the Woods and Shi­itake

Now if that sounds like a lot of food„ you’d be right, Craft isn’t the kind of place that skimps on food — at this point we still had a rather siz­able bowl of Kobe Beef Tartare on the table — because I just wasn’t ready to give it up yet. The Entrees in a word SPECTACULAR, each with a sim­ple prepa­ra­tion, let the high qual­i­ty of the ingre­di­ents shine — the Skirt Steak was our favorite, it was juicy, fla­vor­ful and per­fect­ly medi­um rare- I wouldn’t be exag­ger­at­ing when I say the best piece of steak I’ve ever eat­en. The Strip was also deli­cious, but our fond­ness for the oth­er cut was obvi­ous — as we fin­ished that one first. The lob­ster was inter­est­ing, as it’s a dish we nev­er have, and we where both amazed at the var­ied tex­ture of the claw meat, and the but­tery good­ness of the lob­ster tail. The whipped potato’s where amaz­ing — I hope to nev­er find out exact­ly how much cream and but­ter were in there, need­less to say they were a rich and tasty com­pan­ion to the steak and lob­ster.

Of course what’s din­ner with­out dessert? The pas­try chef sent out an assort­ment of tasty things

  • Brioche bread pud­ding
  • Mon­key­Bread w/ Caramel ice cream (and ‘hap­py 20th anniver­sary writ­ten in caramel on the plate’)
  • Rasp­ber­ry Sor­bet 
  • Mint Ice Cream
  • Fresh Fruit
  • Petit Fours

I’m hard pressed to say what was best — but I will say that the mint ice cream was the best Ice cream I’ve ever had in my entire life — Tru­di­ann also real­ly like the mint ice cream and the Mon­key­Bread, I also fin­ished the bread pud­ding, because I’m a suck­er for bread pud­ding — it was as good as you would expect.

Over­all we enjoyed every­thing — we must have, we fin­ished most every­thing.

Ser­vice was top-notch, atten­tive, friend­ly and infor­ma­tive, the decor was under­stat­ed and classy — pric­ing, well, good food costs mon­ey — and the food at Craft Steak­house is excel­lent — I will hap­pi­ly return to Craft Steak­house on my next Vegas jaunt.

SPINNING 15480°

So yes­ter­day was my birth­day, woo-hoo, my dar­ling wife whisked me off to spend a night in a fan­cy-pants hotel, spend a day look­ing at ancient art/artifacts (I’m total­ly an art geek), and exot­ic tree-frogs (we’re BOTH wildlife geeks), it was a pret­ty great day even though the weath­er was pret­ty nasty. I even learned a lit­tle some­thing

If you see a tasty lit­tle frog (lets say he’s green) and you want to pick him up and lick him, DON’T — because he’s prob­a­bly not as tasty as he looks.

The whole day was low-key and leisure­ly, exact­ly how I like to spend my non-work­ing days — we con­clud­ed our day out with a deli­cious seafood din­ner (her: Pis­ta­chio encrust­ed shrimp, me: Seared Ahi Tuna with dark soy and wasabi) and a VERY rare indul­gence for me, dessert (her: Twice-baked apple pie ala-mode, me: Caramel driz­zled bread pud­ding) might have been the best dessert of my entire life, seri­ous­ly.

The good, the bad, the shrimps

So T want­ed shrimp for din­ner, a sim­ple request — nor­mal­ly I’d go to the one decent seafood place in Ben­salem but pressed for time I went to Acme — nev­er my first choice, ser­vice is chal­leng­ing on the best of days there. So there I am stand­ing at the fish counter — behind me I can hear a gag­gle of deli-ladies par­ty­ing like it’s 1999, but over their noise I couldn’t attract any atten­tion — sud­den­ly the fish wait­ers num­bers grew (we were 2, then short­ly there­after we formed a quar­tet of pissed off Pesc­etar­i­ans) Even­tu­al­ly I did the only thing I could think to do, I went look­ing for a man­ag­er.

10 min­utes lat­er I’m explain­ing to the man­ag­er the issue and invit­ed him to come stand with us at the fish counter, so he could ‘ful­ly soak in the full Acme expe­ri­ence’ — about 4 min­utes after that I had my order of shrimp — The man­ag­er made it very clear — he had no expla­na­tion for the bad ser­vice — nor did he make any excus­es, — I total­ly respect that.

If the expe­ri­ence had end­ed there I would have been sat­is­fied, chalk­ing the expe­ri­ence up as a stan­dard trip to the Acme — but after I paid and was head­ed towards the door — the same man­ag­er stopped me, invit­ed me over to the cus­tomer ser­vice desk — and pro­ceed­ed to ring me up a Acme gift-card for the incon­ve­nience — telling me that he’s sor­ry for my neg­a­tive expe­ri­ence and he hopes the gift-card would encour­age me to give Acme anoth­er chance. A pret­ty classy move.

Omit

My phone has been ring­ing off the hook today, it’s most­ly project relat­ed, but as I was drink­ing my loc-cal, low-carb, high-fiber, low-fat, high-fruc­tose, medi­um-sodi­um par­tial­ly homog­e­nized some­what car­bonized cof­fee bev­er­age, the phone rang, my caller-id let me know the call was from those oh-so help­ful peo­ple at ‘Win­dowWiz­ards’, usu­al­ly I would ignore such a bla­tant sales call, but I hap­pen to be in the mar­ket for replace­ment win­dows, so I picked the call up.

CALLER: “hel­lo, sir, my name is, because I made him cry, let’s just call him OMITfrom Win­dowWiz­ards, I’m autho­rized to offer you our top qual­i­ty dou­ble sash replace­ment win­dows at slight­ly above fac­to­ry cost. That’s 50% off our nor­mal price”

S: Real­ly!! only slight­ly above, who do I have to talk too, to get them actu­al­ly AT fac­to­ry prices?

O: Sir?

S: no I’m seri­ous, whom do I have to talk to, to get them AT fac­to­ry prices, maybe the per­son who autho­rize you?

O: Who sir?

S: Let’s review shall we, you’re OMIT and you’ve been autho­rized… you said that didn’t you.

O: Well, yes I sup­pose I did.

S: There MUST be some­one there who has the pow­er to drop the price TO fac­to­ry prices. Let me talk to them, I’ll wait.

O: Sir, There isn’t any such per­son.

S: But you pre­sent­ed your­self as ‘Autho­rized’ was that a lie OMIT?

O: Sir?

S: OMIT it’s real­ly sim­ple either you’re ‘Autho­rized’ or you’re not.. are you.

O: it says I am sir.

S: But your not aware of whom ‘Autho­rized’ you? Per­haps it hap­pened spon­ta­neous­ly?

O: Sir I don’t think any­one ‘Autho­rized’ me, I just am, it’s part of the job.

S: Hmm.. so can you low­er the price TO fac­to­ry prices?

O: No sir but I am Autho­rized to offer…

S: I think we’ve ade­quate­ly deter­mined that your not Autho­rized, but the script obvi­ous­ly is, click.

So there you have it, OMIT hung up on me, and I real­ly want­ed to hear about the win­dows, but I couldn’t get past the fact that OMIT was spon­ta­neous­ly autho­rized, maybe it comes from work­ing for a wiz­ard?

I am the God of Hellfire

Most peo­ple who know me now, didn’t know me ten years ago, but believe me when I tell you I was one of the evilest moth­er­fuck­ers that ever lived ‘T’ will back me up on this, I would pick a fight just to hear you scream, and then laugh in your face. But those days are long gone, I’ve embraced the zen of life and now very lit­tle both­ers me, except hav­ing to rewire home the­ater sys­tems. Occa­sion­al­ly I wake up on the wrong side of the bed, and a bit of the old saul peeks through, I usu­al­ly lock myself in my stu­dio on those days, like today, and I play music very very loud. Today, being one of those days, prompt­ed a call from a neigh­bor, tran­script fol­lows

N: Saul are you deaf? 

S: Huh?…Why?.. Who is this? 

H: It’s, name omit­ted to pro­tect the vic­tim, I can hear that music from my bed­room.

S: So?… I’m tak­ing requests… 

N: My Fill­ings are loos­en­ing, my pic­tures are falling off the wall… my dog is Sterile..for the love of God turn that down. 

S: Did you say turn it up? cause it\‘s only at half vol­ume right now. 

N: Please don’t turn it up.. I have milk in the fridge that will sour. 

S: You think?… I bet I can make it rain if I turn it all the way up.

N: Your not going to turn it down are you? S: Not even if god him­self appeared in front of me in the form of Lucy Lui and begged me to turn it down so we could make love in peace.

N: Huh?..are you high? , I don’t con­done recre­ation­al drug use, but I do love this ques­tion, well if you’re not going to turn it down, do you have any­thing by Dylan?

S: What do you have against the theme from Sesame Street…Sunny Day Sweep­ing’ the clouds away, evil laugh…fade out.

Yes darjeeling

Like Tea? Turns out I do, although I nev­er real­ized exact­ly how much, my dear friend Kim — hooked me up with a very inge­nious teapot set from Ada­gio Teas. It came with 4 sam­ple teas — I’m crazy for the black teas, so I’ve been main­ly drink­ing that one, ‘T’ is a fan of the white teas (on some things we’re as dif­fer­ent and black and white).

Is there such a thing as spicy tea? I may explore the ‘African Rooi­bos’ teas next.

ISO Buffalo wings

I’m a buf­fa­lo wing lover — I spent a sub­stan­tial amount of time seek­ing out the tasti­est buf­fa­lo wings in my lit­tle ham­let of Philadel­phia — gen­er­al­ly the wings I found sucked, but I also found some awe­some wings, and like a good wing­man — I’m going to hook you up.

IMHO buffalo wings need four things to be considered great:

  1. Meat: I hate scrawny wings, a decent chick­en wing needs more than a bite of meat on it, and the first bite shouldn’t hit bone, we’re look­ing for healthy sub­stan­tial spec­i­mens
  2. Thick hearty sauce: I’m a sauce snob, it should be thick enough that it sticks to the wings, tangy enough to make your lips tin­gle, but not ‘big heat’, I’m gen­er­al­ly not after ‘big heat’ with my wings
  3. Meat / Sauce Ratio: This may seem odd to some, but I hate when the wings are swim­ming in sauce, I want just enough sauce to coat the wings, and not coat my hands, maybe if the sauce is real­ly good a small con­tain­er for addi­tion­al dip­page
  4. Quan­ti­ty: It’s hard to eat one wing, it’s even hard­er to eat just five, I’m gen­er­al­ly irri­tat­ed when an order of wings is less than a dozen

Exceptional wings have one more thing:

    1. Accou­trements: 9 out of 10 buf­fa­lo wings orders comes gar­nished with cel­ery and blue cheese dress­ing, which is total­ly fine — but I real­ly appre­ci­ate when my wings are gar­nished with a bit of cre­ativ­i­ty.

The Best Buffalo Wings in Philadelphia:

    • Eulo­gy Bel­gian Tav­ern: Great wings, a bit hot­ter than I gen­er­al­ly pre­fer wings, but awe­some over­all. »
    • Moriarty’s Restau­rant & Irish Pub: A def­i­nite con­tenders — right amount of heat, thick sub­stan­tial sauce that per­fect­ly coats good qual­i­ty wings. »
    • The Rib Ranch: Not the best wings, but the sauce is tremen­dous, they get on this list for the sauce alone. »
    • Nation­al Mechan­ics: High-qual­i­ty wings and even high­er qual­i­ty sauce, what\‘s not to love — I licked my fin­gers all the way home, this unas­sum­ing bar on 3rd street is a hid­den gem in a jun­gle of high-end restau­rants that is Olde City . »
    • Buga­boo Creek Steak House: Yes it’s a nation­al chain, and the sauce is just good (not great) — but the wings them­selves are huge, and well pre­pared — in a pinch, these hit the spot.
    • The Epi­cure­an: tech­ni­cal­ly the Epi­cure­ans wings are Jamaican Jerk Wings, but they’re big, meaty spec­i­mens of jerky deli­cious­ness. »
    • Taranova’s Pizze­ria: The own­ers of this Ben­salem based piz­za shop are all lovers of heat, their menu has a host of excel­lent selec­tions above and beyond the usu­al pizze­ria fare — their wing sauce is thick, tangy and deli­cious­ly mem­o­rable

I’m not done yet

Oh I for­got to men­tion, I won’t be fea­tur­ing any place with the word ‘Wing’ in their name, I fig­ure they get enough press in the Yel­low Pages.

So that’s the first part of my list, I’m sure I missed YOUR favorite place, but don’t stress, I’m not done yet… but tell me, where is your favorite Wing joint?

Zero Sense of Humor

So the local police here in sub­ur­bia have no sense of humor, zero, zilch, nada. It’s about 3 a.m. and I find myself at Wawa, des­per­ate­ly in need of caf­feine, I sweep in, hit the ATM, grab 2 one liter Diet Cokes and 2 SFRBs and a Pan­tone 388 apple, that’s bright green, if your swatch book isn’t handy. Just as I was grab­bing the apple, ‘I feel good’ by James Brown start­ed play­ing over the Wawa sound sys­tem, now it’s 3 a.m. 90% of the world may be tired, but I just woke up, so I couldn’t help myself, I began to dance, but not as I would dance, but as ‘JAMES’ would dance, up and down the aisles with my hand­ful of car­bon­at­ed jet fuel and my bright green apple, shuf­fling my feet, slid­ing up and down the aisles in my own lit­tle world. Which of course I wasn’t actu­al­ly in, no I was in a con­ve­nience store in the wee hours of the morn­ing, in the mid­dle of sub­ur­bia, danc­ing like in my mind James Brown.

I explained to the police­man, that I was just hap­py, and that I would go home and dance, he looked at me like I was the per­son­i­fi­ca­tion of poor evil, some drug-crazed goa­tee wear­ing freak, so hopped up on goof-balls that I couldn’t con­tain my joy­ous feet long enough to get a bev­er­age. “Get on home, now son!” the nice offi­cer told me, “yes, sir!, going home sir!” in hind-sight, any attempt at humor with a law enforce­ment per­son, is a bad idea, “sor­ry I danced in pub­lic sir!, me and Kevin Bacon are going Home now, sir!”…why I chose to accen­tu­ate every state­ment with ‘SIR’ is beyond me, but I start­ed to gig­gle, I mean what he going to do ‘arrest me for danc­ing liked James, flash ahead to my arraign­ment

Bailiff read the charge..

Saul was arrest­ed on the morn­ing of August 5th at a Wawa, where he was being funky as he wan­na be and he was also get­ting down with his bad self both pre­sum­ably with­out a license.”

flash back to now

So this par­tic­u­lar cop wasn’t a huge ‘Foot­loose’ fan and he cracked nary a smile, but the guy behind the counter lost it, and began laugh­ing so hard I think he pulled a mus­cle, At this point the morn­ing could have gone in two dra­mat­i­cal­ly dif­fer­ent direc­tions, one involv­ing bail mon­ey and a cav­i­ty search, the oth­er involv­ing my coke and blog­ging.

I must stop going to that Wawa.

The goggles do nothing…

Well, as I often do, I found myself at IKEA again today, but not my nor­mal IKEA, but a brand spank­ing new one, 6 miles clos­er to my house. It was crowd­ed, I was alone, it was rain­ing, a recipe for dis­as­ter to be cer­tain.

So while shop­ping, I noticed, this was NOT the typ­i­cal ‘flesh’ show that I was used to, 20 some­thing females in inap­pro­pri­at­ly short tight and reveal­ing garb, show­ing off tanned, toned and chis­eled flesh, no this was 30, and some­times 40 somthings show­ing me… Truth be told there are no words for what they where show­ing.

So it got me think­ing, Do these women not own a mir­ror? or per­haps they think they look good? you would think that their tat­too artist would have told them they looked hideous, I men­tion their tatoo artist specif­i­cal­ly because obvi­ous­ly they all have one, he spe­cial­izes in blur­rly and poor­ly designed trib­al and celtic sym­bols, ocas­sion­al­ly on bellys, some­times boobs, but usu­al­ly on the fleshy back fat of 30 some­thing women. Also I’m all for tight cloth­ing… on Clau­dia Shif­fer, Pam Ander­son and Car­men Elec­tra, but Ladies, if your pants are so tight that I can see the label on your under­wear, give your feet a break, and let some blood flow, And for you ladies who insist on wear­ing stretch pants, work­out garb and bik­ing shorts, if I can tell your clit is pierced through your pants, you may want to rethink the ensem­ble a bit…

I have far less issues with boobs, which is good, because it seems every 17 – 25 year old now has d-cups and since it’s been 90° and mug­gy here in philly, Breasts are every­where…, but even they (notice the prop­er use of the plur­al) should have some deco­rum when out and about. If your breasts are fami­lar with your knees, a tank top is a ques­tion­able move, or if your wear­ing a white spaghet­ti strap tank, what pos­s­esed you to wear a neon blue bra?, are you Madon­na? is this 1986? wear­ing a shirt like that I only see two options, if you have nice perky boobs, go bra­less, or wear a strap­less bra, if your breasts are too sub­stan­tial for a strap­less bra, do us all a favor, burn the spaghet­ti strap tank.

Ulti­mate­ly you just have to ask your­self, do I look good in this? Is my ass hang­ing, am I a mess?, do I look like a cheap hook­er? If you have any doubt snap a pic­ture, send it to me, I’ll be noth­ing but hon­est

Love me tender

I’m slow­ly turn­ing into Elvis, even though I’m aware of it, the process seems to be beyond my con­trol, the sim­i­lar­i­ties are, well …sim­i­lar;

Both Elvis and I are male, we both have side­burns (although difer­ent­ly styled), we both have weight issues and are fond of white vel­vet jump­suits and large dia­mond encrust­ed belts with our names on it.(although to be fair although mine does say ‘Elvis’, I don’t recall ever see­ing Elvis wear­ing a ‘Saul’ belt, but who knows real­ly, it may have been one of those things he did in the pri­va­cy of Grace­land).

I know what your think­ing, saul based on that pit­tance of sim­i­lar­i­ties, you could just be turn­ing into an Elvis imper­son­ator, and not actu­al­ly ‘The King’ him­self.. But wait, there’s more, Elvis was very fond of his mam­ma, and although I’ve nev­er actu­al­ly met Mrs. Pres­ley, I feel I too would be par­tial to her… Elvis breathed in oxy­gen, I also breath in oxy­gen (and obvi­ous­ly at a high­er fre­quen­cy than ‘cur­rent’ Elvis), we both exhale car­bon diox­ide.. Star­tling isn’t it…

The sim­i­lar­i­ties are far from over, lat­er in life Elvis con­sumed a steady diet of Val­i­um, Ethi­na­mate, Dilau­did, Demerol, Per­co­dan, Placidyl, Dexedrine, Biphet­a­mine, Amy­tal, Quaalude, Carbri­tal, Cocaine hydrochlo­ride and Rital­in. I LIVE right near a CVS Pharmacy..creepy huh.

I’m not real­ly sure when the trans­for­ma­tion will be com­plete… stay tuned

Dear Santa

I know you usu­al­ly only do the Decem­ber thing, and that your busy deal­ing with elves, rein­deer and that foxy Mrs. Clause, but please, please, please can you find it in your snowy heart to deliv­er the fol­low­ing to me today;

  • one large box of Spree,
  • six one liter bot­tles of Diet Coke
  • a gross of pix­ie sticks, just orange, grape and lemon please 
  • six amish but­ter baked pret­zels
  • a Funion loaf 
  • some Milan­ta, because I real­ly shouldn’t eat that Funion loaf]
  • six nuts and raisin Chunky Bars
  • and six large granny smith apples

if you do that for me oh beard­ed one, I promise I’ll be good…I swear

Rounding & Cheese

Yet­sre­day for lunch I stopped at a local piz­za joint for a cou­ple of slices and a diet cola, I bought 3 slices, and told the guy that he need’nt heat them up, because I wasn’t going to eat them for ‘hours’, he put them on a paper plate and asked me…

you need a bag?,” now there was no snap­py retort, or abu­sive con­ver­sa­tion I stop in this place fair­ly often and any form of abuse is just going to yeild me sali­va on my edibles..so i chilled, at least ver­bal­ly, I stared at him and ner­vous­ly smiled, hadn’t I said I wasn’t eat­ting them for hours? did he hon­est­ly think I was going to walk around with loose cold piz­za on a ‘less than qual­i­ty paper plate’, The whole exchange up to this point was very awk­ward, but wait..it got bet­ter.

so I got my bag ‘o slices and my cup­pa­coke, and he rang me up, my total was $6.35, I tossed out a tenspot and he sweati­ly hand­ed me my change, 4 bucks??? whatthe­duece? so being me I ques­tioned it.

S: “You gave me the wrong change…”

Piz­za: “I smoothed down”

S: “smoothed?”

S: So you smoothed away 25 cents off my bill?

Piz­za: yeah, makes the change eas­i­er.

S: I see… okay, lat­er

[and I head­ed towards the door ]

S: Say, just out of curi­ousi­ty how many slices do you thing ya’ll sell in a day?

Piz­za: We go through about 50 — 70 slice pie’s a day on the week­days, and prob­a­bly twice that on a sat­ur­day or a sun­day.

S: Wow that’s a lot of pizza’s.

[and I left]

So the geek in me has to do the Math, lets assume that Piz­za dude ‘Smooths’ away any change under 50 cents, lets start with a week­day.

Monday’s Slice Sales: 70 piz­za pies x 8 slices = 560 slices;
Monday’s Slice Rev­enue: 560 slices x $1.75 = 980 bucks 
[poten­tial­ly at least]

To ful­ly com­pre­hend the impact of ‘Piz­za Smooth­ing’ we need to make an addi­tion­al assump­tion, the aver­age slice buy­er is buy­ing 2 slices and a small cola for a bill of $4.35

Monday’s Slice Sales Quan­ti­ty: 560 slices ÷ 2 = 280 sales
Moday’s Adjust­ed Slice Rev­enue: 280 x $4.35 = $1218.00

Still no change, so per­haps Pizza’s method­ol­o­gy is sound?… not hard­ly, we have to look at the impact on indi­vid­ual sales, remem­ber based on our orig­i­nal con­cept he ‘smooths’ away all change under 50 cents.

Monday’s Smooth­ing Loss­es: 280 x $0.35 = $98.00
Week­ly Loss­es: $98.00 x 5 + ($98.00 x 4) = $882.00

Now I’m not an eco­nom­ics expert, but giv­ing away almost 900 bucks of rev­enue is prob­a­bly an eco­nom­ic no-no. If you think of it in Piz­za terms it’s like giv­ing away 504 slices of piz­za for free.

They could elim­i­nate ‘Smooth­ing’ cut the slice prices by 60% and still increase prof­it, AND they’d have the bestest + cheap­est piz­za in town.

And to think, my high school math teacher thought I was sleep­ing