Tuesday, December 23, 2008

the death of wonder bread

ok,so I am sitting in our local brewpub...the evolution of which has in itself been a bit of an epic.  Before it was the brewpub it is now it was an upscale brewpub.  One that tried to pair the elegant meals with the beer.  You know,no thanks.  I want nachos that aren't made with birch parlor smoked venison and hot house tomato based gilroy free range garlic salsa,and organic habeneros.  Give me the frickin cholestorol bomb...i mean really.  And pairing the beer?  PBR baby.  (I"m actually kidding,I like microbeer...a lot).  And these mountain biker people,really nice, are talking about some food, and they say "It reminds me of the bread they used to have..Wonder Bread...oh,remember that bread?  Red,blue,yellow circles on the package.  Really,remember that?".  
"Wait?" i say,outweighing them by twice.  "They still make Wonder Bread."
'Oh,no way>  No."
"Absolutely."  knowing well they were the food snobs...they were just waiting at the bar for the venison to age slightly.  They were waiting for the other bar to reopen.
These are the people that drive me crazy.  We have a bunch of friends who don't have t.v.s.  Ok,that is fine.  I never watch mine...but I mean,you're living in the world,ya know.  Open your eyes.  
I was at a party...ok,the party was at my house, and my friends were talking about the new simpsons movie.  This guy says"  The Simpsons....are they still on?"
So these people who decry wonder bread....they are the ones who have a secret stash in their closet(it never goes bad) and after they feed the kids the bean sprout filets,come on,we know it,they go to the closet ,pull out the wonder and the velveeta and make grilled cheese sandwiches.  Ok,you know that sounds good.
Allright,we could eat healthier,for sure....But when we throw a party the first thing to go is the mac and cheese.  This is not box,it is homemade,but it is not some whole wheat pasta,guyere and blanched goat milk thing with capers.  It's macaroni,and cheese,and butter,and milk,and bread crumbs(probably the dreaded wonder).
and it's so fun to see these women who feed their children oat bran cookies just mainlining the mac and cheese.....and taking the spray easy cheez and sucking it down like it's a bong.
  so i went to the wonder bread website.  Still exists.  Still exists.  It will be here after you homesprouted spelt bread has bit the dust.  and ,hey!!!!they have recipes.

So there is this guy at the brewpub who decided the salsa wasn't hot enough,brought his own peppers and gave them to the kitchen.  He sits there and sweats,and eats all this stuff the special make just for him.  What do you think they would do if I brought my own wonder bread...or better yet,a recipe for cheesy puffy cassarole from the wonder website...and then,after the sat the creation in front of me I asked them for a beer pairing.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

a coupla my favorites

so, here are a couple of the people who live in my county...or who used to.  An entirely new blog could be written about the eccentrics who live there....guys who wear long gowns and ride skateboards through town,long bearded and yelling "Mahalo" like some Waikiki Messiah(good band name,I think).  In ols school Mill Valley,before the the bad money element rolled in, we were taught to be respectful of the eccentrics,of the men who told you we were being taken over by aliens,sticking out their tongues and teaching people how to taste the metallic mind contaminent in the air...respectuful of the artists who spelled out a giant grilled cheese sandwich with slices of velveeta.  Respectful of the retarde man who wansered downtown telling everyone to have a nice day.  We even knew his name...George Grant.
           In one of my last blogs I wrote about the musicians who live in our area....One that I forgot about was Elvin Bishop.  Now frankly I am not the biggest Elvin Bishop fan,and know he was a blues player who had one cross over hit,"fooled around and fell in love",which was the ballad of my senior prom...really,the one slow dance the band knew....played it twice.  Well Elvin Bishop is a local guitar player.  One night I was at a high school music project,and Elvin Bishop sat in....with freshmen....and they all just acted like he was anybody.  Some guy said "Hey man, wow these kids don't even know he's fucking Elvin Bishop"   >  I wanted to yell"Fooled around and Fell,Elvin...take me back to the prom..".
Oh,and we had this other musical icon named Chuck Day.

Chuck Day played the local bar scene in Fairfax...And we have a pretty good bar scene.  We have five bars in two blocks.   And everybody here plays music.  You know how in l.a. all your waiters are actors....here your auto repairman fronts the local blues band.   Your waitress sings for big brother and the holding company...seriously.
Well Chuck Day died,and  the whole music scene went from bar to bar,ala new orleans,musicians singing,and bands playing.  I popped in to 19 Broadway to hear a band,and I saw a guy I once worked with,,,
"Hey Man?"
"Hey Joe"
"Chuck was the best"
"(trying not to imply I am there for the band)  Oh,for sure,Man"
"I loved Chuck,Man.   Quite a history"
So,I tried to find out the history.  Ok,remember that Johnny Rivers song "Secret Agent Man" .  Chuck Day created that riff.  Even if you haven't ever heard the song,you've heard the riff.
Chuck Day played guitar on "California Dreaming" and was the second guitarist with the Mama's and The Papas.
Chuck Day fathered Cass Eliotts baby.
Chuck Day lived in Fairfax...wait,what?  Let's go back...
ChuckDay was Mama's baby daddy?
That is pretty frickin cool.

For me,that is the pop cultural element....not even the "who did who" but the fact that who got done in a time and a place of vitality and incredible exploration.  And in someways our county is probably jammed packed with that kind of info.
I was sittin next to a guy in my local brewpub.  He was talking about the reunion of the summer of love,how he did some acid there and it was ok.  I said "Do alot of acid in the 60"s?".  "Oh, i was probably responsible for a million hits".
Ok...a million hits.
I've done acid three times...and sometimes my little finget turns into a snake...Not really...
   a million hits.
Well,turns out he made it and sold it.  Now I have already told you that in Marin County you can't seem freaked out by any of this.
"Yeah,I made and sold acid"
"(HOLY SHIT!!!!!!) Oh,wow.  Really?"
"yeah..I served my time"
"(WHAT THE F....)Really?(I hear someone calling me over here)
"  Yeah,I was in jail""  Yeah,man.  Stick it to the man"  .  Nope. didn't say that.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Buttey Lewis

My friend Monica tells me that Huey Lewis lives in Montana and was in the broadway production of chicago...

The zombiest place on earth

ok,so what is it with the whole zombie thing.  Is it that we have become zombie like,with our Ipods and computers...that we are one step from George Romero Land...George Romero made Zombies really popular with night of the living dead.....I just have to stop for a moment and divert on how weird disneyland is.  I mean,it's a park named after a guy.  Well,what about Romeroland.  I mean George Romero has a following like Disney did.   Romeroland might fly.  Zombies of The Caribbean ,The Zombie Mansion....Peter Zombie...Zombie Mouse.  If I keep playing this game I will realize that substituting Zombie for things might lead to confusion.  I realized that when naming Zombie Mouse, so I guess his wife would be Minnie Zombie,and they could hyphenate their names  Minnie Zombie-Mouse and Zombie Zombie-Mouse...but what about their pet Pluto and friend Goofy.  They both would just be named Zombie.  
This reminds me of the time that my friends and I were sleeping over at Scott Weiss's house, and we substituted part of a t.v. series with the word "ass".  Oh the things teenagers do, except that I am not sure we were still in high school.  So Voyage to the bottom of the sea became Voyage to the bottom of the ass...  and Then The Dick Van Ass Show, Dragass (or assnet)...and then the coplication arose when Steve wanted to do Bonanza and all he  said was "Ass".
And problems arise when  naming rides....do Splash Mountain and Space Mountain become both Zombie Mountains...or I was thinking Splash Zombie and Zombie Mountain.  Maybe you could ride a car shaped like a zombie on Splash Zombie.
and Maybe instead of Mickey ears, you would have Zombie Zombie Mouse ears that are rotted on the edge,with a piece of exposed brain in the back.   Hey,this is really taking shape.  Maybe I can use some of my bailout money to greenlight this baby.
and since the newest disney thing is shooting things ala carnival style video games,toy story style, I think Pixar should do a Zombie Story ride where you can shoot them,and they collapse.  Zombie Potato Head,Zombie Slinky Dog.  Buzz Zombieyear and the cowboy, Zombie.
I am not going to transfigure Jessie the Cowgirl,because frankly,she's my favorite...I have had a crush on her for awhile now.  So she would just be the scream queen who runs partially clothed through the ride....like in the movies of ...Rob Zombie.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Huey Lewis and The News

I live in Marin County. To other people I say San Francisco....it is just easier. I had a roomate in college that was under the impression that Mill Valley was a farm town. Mill Valley. Well,he was from Beverly Hills,so maybe to him Dubai is a farm country. Marin County is home to many stars. It isn't l.a. where my friends kids get bullied by Tommy Lee and Pam Anderson's son....but it does have it's share of celebs....of course,many of them are old rockers,really old rockers. When we moved into our house somebody told us that Janis Joplin had hung out at our house. On our first party,when adults were hitting the walls literally,I began to believe that maybe Janis's spirit hadn't left...either that or the evils of teaching take its toll. Turns out Joplin lived in Larkspur....but her drummer, Dave Getz,is our neighbor. I taught his daughter.he seemed ok.
This has become an actor haven. Fucking Sean Penn lives around here. I love him as an actor,partially because I see what a reclusive miscreant he can be. His wife, Robin,came into a bagel store where I frequent. She seemed ok.
I saw Jerry Garcia once. Bonnie Raitt was having coffee. No better sighting has taken place than George Lucas who is a local,who has a fairly modest home up from us,and loves Marin because he can blend in. The trick to living in expensive paradise that we pretend to afford is that if any mega-celeb walks by you can fall apart privately,but you aint some housewife from Toledo who falls apart at the mention of sylvester stallone when he is mentioned at universal studios. She was next to me,and she was like Meg Ryan in When Harry Met Sally....but see,I was raised in Marin,so I can be "a chiller".
so george lucas walks into our local mexican restaurant,and is waiting for a table. It's Marin,so we all pretend he isn't important,and he likes it that way. Nobody steps up and says "I am your father, George" or " Wow,George...I think the dialogue in part 2 is wildly overated". He is just waiting for a table, MIles says "Wow,I wonder how he became a filmmaker. " and I,breaking the cardinal rule, said "why don't you ask him?"....and he bounded off...'don't mention jar-jar" I say.
I keep my head focused on the appetizer platter saying to Erika "I mean,he's a kid. He's not asking for some rare script to be autographed,or a picture to be taken"...and I expect him to come back several seconds later...and he doesn't come back...I look up from the taquitos to see my savvy ten year old chatting with George Lucas...then he comes back.
"What did he say"
"Well,he did short movies when he was young...and he went to film school at usc...(insert George info here)."
Hey,I don't care how bad his dialogue is...and how many nerdy jabba the hut fanatics he has spawned....George Lucas is allright with me.

Now, another Marin County dynasty is an alumni of my high school. Hugh Craig. You weren't alive in Marin County or the 80's and not exposed to Hugh and his tam high alumni friends. Huey Lewis and the News. I loved them...I once saw them at the OAKLAND COLISEUM. THe
crowd was nuts. They booed the opening act...a mexican based accordian rock band....The lead singer said "Oh,you don't know real music"...and considering the band was Los Lobos,one of the great longstanding bands,he was actually right. HUeY CAME DOWN IN A HUGE CABLE CAR TO THE STRAINS OF HEART OF ROCK AND ROLL. SF's premier cable car bell ringer came played a bell solo to heart of rock and roll. It was amazing.
But Los Lobos has become the worlds most respected band of musicians and Huey...well I haven't seen him in years. Occasionally he would come into where I got coffee in the morning,looking like he was still living that rockstar life without really having much fire behind him. Huey and he News played our county fair two years ago. Gone the way of kc and the sunshine band and Peter Frampton.(Ok,for the storytelling element I will ignore the fact that Los Lobos has played there too)...Fame is fleeting.
but wealth can still be made. Huey and the news play corporate gigs for like Apple at 150,000 dollars a pop. They can play at the bankruptcy parties.
now lets finish up by playing the PANDORA game. Pandora is internet radio that you type in an artist and then it creates a radio station based on the characteristics of your artist. I just typed in Huey Lewis...and this is who I have heard while writing this piece
huey lewis
reo speedwagon(keep on loving you.eeeeeeek)
Huey Lewis
zz top(what?)
Kenny Loggins(footloose...see blog called bloggins and messina)
phil collins
billy joel
men at work(I"m sure they are playing at a county fair in australia somewhere)
journey(I saw the lead singer drunk one day at the cantina...now bought by carlos santana...whose father was a mariachi there)
j geils.