26 and fishy

Thanks to Petit (soon to be a father of two), Kate, Jason, Pat, Larry, Grandad, Marge and Burt, and the family in NC for the birthday wishes yesterday. I'll be much more gym-ready with my new gym bag, lock, and a more fully-loaded iPod, among many other gifts.

On an unrelated note, this weekend Jill and I became the proud (foster) parents of four fish- Penguin Tetras named Jim and Pam and Red Something Tetras named Orlando Cabrera and Philip Seymour Hoffman. All three have lived for 48 72 hours in their new home, a monumental achievement in fish longevity. Jill wants the aquarium teeming with fish, so expect more updates in the near future.


State Stereotypes

While I haven't been south of Houston Street in almost a year, my past American travels still make me the leading expert in US geography and sociology in the range of my home wireless network. In this era of tension and animosity between red states and blue states, stereotypes about the residents and terrain of our fifty great states have grown out of control. I'm here to confirm and dispel some of these truths and misconceptions. Below, I'll include one fact and one myth about each of the 38 states I've visited (or laidover in, or marked my territory on).

Fact: It's hot. Seriously, cactuses and shit.
Fiction: Randy Johnson is 6'10". (he's 6'9 7/8")

Fact: The locals refer to it as "our Kansas".
Fiction: Someone knows what a Razorback is.

Fact: We stopped drawing state lines in 1849 because no one was paying attention anymore.
Fiction: Ain't no party like a west coast party 'cause a west coast party don't stop. (they stop)

Fact: At any given point, most Colorado residents are standing at a 45 degree angle.
Fiction: The air is thinner in the Rockies. (you just feel fat because everyone else there is in shape)

Fact: Every gorgeous housewife in the state packs her insurance executive husband's lunch at 7:41am, drops off her 2.2 children at soccer practice, and takes her minivan to the tanning salon before lunch at Panera at 12:10. Seek alternate route.
Fiction: The second C is silent.

Fact: The Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel recently raised its toll to $446.50
Fiction: Delaware is actually a state.

Fact: The 2000 election was rigged thanks in part to Jeb Bush.
Fiction: The state speed limit is 7.

Fact: Every male resident looks like either Michael Stipe or Andre 3000.
Fiction: It was ever on Ray Charles's mind (or Willie Nelson's, for that matter).

Fact: Anyone who reads this state's name is indeed da ho.
Fiction: People live in Idaho.

Fact: Despite the name, illin' takes a backseat to chillin' as the state pastime.
Fiction: The state nickname, Land of Lincoln, is justified.

Fact: Larry Bird was the offspring of a pitchfork and a bale of plutonium-laced hay.
Fiction: "Hoosiers" was filmed in Indiana.

Fact: The state's primary export is wind.
Fiction: One can drive across the entire state in a single week.

Fact: The Cincinnati airport is located in Kentucky for some reason.
Fiction: A bathtub mint julep can be made in a shower stall.

Fact: Home to the homeliest people in America.
Fiction: Moose are dangerous. (most moose are actually two people in costume)

Fact: Maryland is the northernmost state in which Mr. Pibb outsells Dr. Pepper.
Fiction: 80% of Maryland restaurantgoers have crabs.

Fact: There are no inhabitable towns west of Newton.
Fiction: All Massachusetts residents are rich, tree-hugging, gay-marrying liberals. (our governor is a rich, conversative scrotbag)

Fact: Along with Hawaii, this is one of two states my dad hasn't visited, despite having gone to college in Indiana.
Fiction: Ford still manufacters automobiles.

Fact: Sweet Christ, it's cold.
Fiction: Lots of lakes, all of which are perfect for family-themed boat cruises.

Fact: McDonald's suspended construction of its marquee Golden Arches when a mysterious river impeded the completion of the second arch.
Fiction: The state's "show me" attitude welcomes exhibitionism at WalMart. (be careful)

Fact: Native American teenagers in overalls will inquire about the "East Coast poontang" with no introducion.
Fiction: The sky in Montana is actually bigger.

Fact: The state's buffets are quite affordable.
Fiction: HBO films 85% of its latenight programming in Nevada. (it's 84.3%)

New Hampshire
Fact: Despite its location far north of Hell, people here enjoy NASCAR.
Fiction: There was an old Hampshire.

New Jersey
Fact: Jersey shore beaches are popular vacation sites for Manhattan stockbrokers, needles, used condoms, and bodybags.
Fiction: Paramus has both north and south borders.

New York
Fact: Lake Placid has hosted Olympic Games; New York City has not.
Fiction: Utica, NY, is often referred to as The Big Apple, or The City That Never Sleeps

North Carolina
Fact: They loves their Jesus in Carolina. And their college basketball.
Fiction: Tobacco, before market, is pronounced tobacky.

Fact: Alleged octaroon Warren G. Harding is LeBron James's great, great uncledaddy.
Fiction: John Lennon, Robert Johnson, and Jim Morrison would approve of Cleveland's Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame.

Fact: College athletes in Oregon are all Beavers and Ducks.
Fiction: Pro athletes in Oregon are all stoners and thugs.

Fact: Every county smells like the feces of a different animal.
Fiction: Like all northern cities, Philadelphia has indoor plumbing.

Rhode Island
Fact: Roger Williams divided Connecticut into two states after a three hour basement summit with Samuel Adams and an ounce of Maui Wowie.
Fiction: Rhode island is an island, and is paved with rhodes.

South Carolina
Fact: Schools, golf courses, and bowling alleys in South Carolina are still racially segregated.
Fiction: More than one person actually voted for Strom Thurmond more than once.

South Dakota
Fact: God effectively rigged the 1788, 1800, 1860, and 1892 elections by carving four future presidents' faces into a mountain in South Dakota.
Fiction: Pending state funding, a second mountain will display the likenesses of modern American heroes Condoleeza Rice, George Clinton, Sammy Sosa, and 50 Cent.

Fact: The second M in Mormon is silent.
Fiction: After discovering Utah, Lewis and Clark each tried to name it after the other, then agreed on "hate U" backwards.

Fact: In 2005, Ben & Jerry's Phish Food ice cream outsold razors in Vermont, 212-1.
Fiction: Howard Dean's backwoods upbringing would have proved detrimental against George Bush's Yale grooming anyway.

Fact: Great scholars and leaders such as Thomas Jefferson and George Washington are inspirations to every piece of hick trash born and raised in this great state.
Fiction: Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.

Fact: People in Washington like coffee.
Fiction: The entire state is our nation's capital.

West Virginia
Fact: Most West Virginia bars serve miners.
Fiction: West Virginia third graders learn to play "Dueling Banjos" on the recorder even before "Hot Cross Buns".

Fact: On particularly cold days, Wisconsin babies are often breast-fed cheese.
Fiction: Favre can be pronounced by the human tongue.

Fact: Brokeback Mountain is beautiful in the summer.
Fiction: Wyoming residents are proud of the state's most famous child, Dick Cheney.

For good measure, I'll list one stereotype about each of the twelve states I haven't visited. If you can confirm or deny these rumors, please let me know.

Kant Komment Kandidly

Cold and oily

Good weather, plentiful lei jokes, lots of vowels

Lots of corn

Entirely below sea level

Everybody moves to the back of the bus.

Again, corn

New Mexico
Not all that different from old Mexico.

North Dakota
I think this is the Dakota where Lennon was shot.

The wind goes sweepin' down the plains.

Decent music and great ribs

Steers, queers, and soulless, born-again, egomaniacal, ultraviolent, ex-cokehead leaders of the free world...


Things I like about Framingham

1) It's above sea level.
2) In the year I've lived here, Ive been neither robber nor murdered.

end communication


Live from Maconia

I'm coming to you live, for the first time, from the O'Connor family iBook G4, where "delete" means "backspace", "right click" means "click on the other part of the same button and try not to punch anything when Windows commands don't appear to the right of the cursor", and "pay bills online" means "give Bank of America the same information 47 times, download Mozilla Firefox, give the same information 19 more times, and then give up and write a paper check for your cell phone bill".

My Mac exploits so far include putting all my music in one place for the first time in months, synching up my iPod with my Honda TTS software (and being only somewhat disappointed with the results), and downloading four new albums: Kanye West's last two, Talib Kweli's "Quality," and Supergrass's "Road to Rouen," all before Jill warned me that I'm not to purchase any new music this soon before my birthday.

Speaking of birthdays, Jill bought me a new overcoat yesterday, one whose sleeves are at least eight inches longer than my last one, and which extends a solid two feet lower, covering not only my ass, but my newly thawed thighs and knees. This will come in handy when I go back to work tomorrow through the foot-and-a-half of snow that God dumped on us today (though I'm not complaining, as I stayed in bed with my iBook, my iPod dock, and my other lover until after four o'clock this afternoon).

We spent yesterday in Worcester, watching the Holy Cross basketball team blow a big lead against Patriot League powerhouse Bucknell with Jill's dad and her cousin's son Riley. Every trip to Holy Cross reiterates my regret over not going to a school that cared about its basketball team. Holy Cross's high school-sized gym has two student sections, one of which wears purple "Tim's Tribe" t-shirts in honor of center Tim Clifford, while the other side wears "MVP Kevin Hamilton" t-shirts. They stagger their "let's go 'saders," "defense," and "asshole" chants for maximum penetration and wield signs like "Don't Panic," with a life-sized picture of Bucknell's Piniella-complexed head coach screaming at a ref, and "Classy Abe," with a picture of Bucknell guard Abe Titmus with two white girls (I'd love to know the story behind this one). The air was let out of the gymnasium gradually, as Bucknell mounted a comeback over the last eight minutes, during which time a horde of rowdy Pennsyltuckians made their presence felt.

On Friday night, we hosted Kate and Matt, enjoyed Jill's top-shelf cooking, and played three rounds of a DVD music game they brought called "Riff". Not a bad weekend.



Congratulations to the NFL referees, who changed their minds after the Colts lost and successfully handed the Super Bowl to the Pittsburgh Steelers. I watched the first half with several Jeffreys and a boatload of loud white trash at Marc Anthony's in Ashland, and the second half with just the former group back home.

After deciding against spontaneous trips to Pittsburgh, Baltimore, Washington, Staunton, New York, and Hartford, Jill and I sauntered up to Portland last night, where Byron and Alyssa showed off their new house and I showed off my new car (complete with a full bottle of wine spilled in the trunk).

Just before the trip to Maine, Jill informed me that our iBook arrived at her office. Had the weekend involved less Maining, Superbowling, and insulating, I'm sure I'd be intimate with it by now.

On Thursday night, a cop knocked on our front door to tell Jill that a neighbor had complained about her car blocking part of his driveway. Of course, this neighbor has only lived across the street from Jill for 21 years, taken on a tenant who had previously lived with Jill, and fathered Jill's prom date. Only in Framingham.

On Tuesday night, I broke my right index finger trying to steal a pass minutes into my weekly basketball games. Unwilling to give up the best exercise I get all week, I played three more games and taped it up the next day. I have close to full motion in the finger now and its purpleness has faded to a pinkbrown not unlike my natural finger hue.

I'm sure last weekend was full of blogworthy events as well, but I can't remember back that far. To be honest, I'm not sure why I keep this blog, but I'd feel like a jerk if I just gave it up.