“Deuce” vs. “Douche”

I am the most obnoxious, butt-crazy Bruce Springsteen fan in the tri-state area. After 2.5 decades of training, my fanaticism has reached snob-and-a-half caliber.

So recently, my well-meaning colleague and friend John C. attempted to knock me off my high horse.

“Ever hear Bruce’s cover of Blinded by the Light?” he asked.

“No, I’ve never heard his cover of Blinded by the Light,” I responded graciously, smacking my palm against my forehead behind the veil of gchat.

My annoyance was two-fold. See, Bruce Springsteen doesn’t cover Manfred Mann songs, a. And b, Manfred Mann had the audacity to alter the integrity of Bruce’s original work, which has left me a little salty.

While Bruce sings “cut loose like a deuce,” Mr. Mann synthetically grunts “revved-up like a douche.” Frankly, I wouldn’t want to encounter a revved-up douche, whereas a cut-loose deuce doesn’t seem so bad (I actually live with one). So get it right or pay the price!

So the major takeaways are: 1) Don’t assume Bruce is less awesome than he is; 2) Bruce doesn’t ride on the coat-tails of shitty bands; and 3) Don’t test me on Springsteen. Ever!

[Sorry John C.]

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January is Soup-er!

While visiting my sister in Baltimore, I found my gaze tripped by the following wondrous news:

Oh, my god! No wonder I’ve had so much extra spring in my step lately. Soup is my favorite. I could eat soup for breakfast, lunch, lunner, dinner and at the movies. The Matzoh Ball variety is at the top of my list.

I was so moved by the news that I got in a tiff with my 8 year-old niece, Olivia, who swears by her unbridled passion for soup. “I love soup,” said Bird, “Way more than you. I love Chicken n Stars.”

“That is not real soup,” I said, “But it is good for you, so word.” It wasn’t really a fight, but it was passionate. Also, her mom told me she’s had soup for lunch 487 times out of 530 tries during her short academic career, so double word for consistency.

Anyway, in honor of National Soup Month, I would like to resurrect an old favorite:

Nice.

So the most appropriate thing to do over the next week is to eat a lot of potato-based soups, like Potato Leek or a nice Vichyssoise (though, when it’s cold enough outside to freeze your tits together, a cold soup is probably a “bad idea”). So let it rain, and clear it out, and three cheers for liquid dinners of all kinds.

Crocs = hilarity

[If you like that , you will love this.]

Now, Dance!

I have been trying to shed my MySpace self for almost a year now. I quit it completely for Lent last year, which was a start. But last month, I decided to buckle down and chuck it once and for all.

“Hello,” I wrote to Customer Service. “I would like to quit this shit, please and thank you.” [paraphrasing]

Unfortunately, this process has been made more arduous by an inactive email address that I use for logging in purposes. In attempting to wrap its virtual head around the idea of my dead email, MySpace has revealed itself to be the Web Platform of the Absurd.

“Okay, you want to quit,” responded MySpace, roughly 5 times. “You will just need to click on a link we’ve sent in an email to your inactive address, and you’ll be all set.” Hah?

“But that shit don’t work, I’ve explained this!” I said. “Get me off this boat or I’m gonna jump.”

“Okay okay okay,” said MySpace, days later. “Here’s what you do…

[not paraphrasing]

“1. Create a handwritten sign that says MySpace.com and your friend ID. Your friend ID is the number between ID= and &mytoken in your profile’s URL.

“2. Take a picture of yourself with this hand written sign and reply to this e-mail with the salute as an e-mail attachment, or as an e-mail link to where it is uploaded.

“Now, dance!” [paraphrasing]

I guess quitting MySpace is like quitting the team. You have to run some extra sprints in your underwear before they let you fly the coop, or something. Only I’m still on there, and I don’t even get no fuggin complimentary Gatorade bottle.

The Genesis of Kelliann’s

KelliannsWalking home from work on Tuesday, I made a horrifying discovery:

Kelliann’s, second home to most West Philadelphians, provider of pitchers, hunting grounds for the occasional mistake, and the world’s most authentic anti-Cowboys forum, was sans liquor license. Out to lunch. Closed. No more. I freaked out good and proper.

Now, listen here: Kelliann’s cannot go.

Where else can hordes of construction workers, Penn grad students and aging Philadelphia gentlemen mingle seamlessly? Where else can a young liberal arts grad yuck it up with a 250 lb. pimp over lagers under the watchful eye of the pool table lamp? No where else, at least not in this town of towns.

The emotional whiplash was quite strong. “Forever closed?” said one friend. “Holy crap!” said another. “I hear it’s going to be an Italian restaurant,” said a third. NO NO NO. meI thought back to my first year out of college. I was 22, unseasoned in most things, and this was where I went to watch the Iggles and blow all my money on Jack and ginger and forget that, at that point, I knew next to nothing about anything. I thought, “Maybe it’ll be a nice touch of catharsis, now that I’m so awesomely in control of my life.” Eff that. Where was I going to get a beer, a shot, and hit on by 80 year olds?

AND SO, it was to my great pleasure that I noticed a neon light a-blazing in good old KCC (Kelliann’s Country Club) yesterday afternoon. After much debate in the house over whether this was for real for real, we made the three-block, 1 a.m. trek we’ve made so many times before. And it looked like this:

Kellianns

We entered into a triumphant full house. Steve the bartender said, “Sup Myrrh,” as always. Little Annie smiled and gave a little wave. Ernie nodded as we passed and said, “Hello, Miss Mary.” The familiar seediness of the place was as frothy as ever, and the booze was a-flowin after that.

Now, I don’t know what happened this week. But on Saturday night, I was blessed with the opportunity to make the three-block, stumbling walk home. And that’s all that matters.

[Some further reading for yinz]

I Don’t Know What It Means, But I Know That I Mean It

A cryptic message, c/o a church on 17th and Sansom.
Church
[One of these days soon, I’ll throw away all the things whose significance never crystalized.]

Year of the Potato

Hi hi hi. My name is Mary vO (like the booze) and this is my inaugural blog post. I am so excited.

Did you know that 2008 is the International Year of the Potato? It’s the truth (I tend to find a lot of inane information on the inter-webs when I have a deadline). To celebrate, I am dedicating this day to the Irish.

UlyssesI’ve already explained the basic premise of Ulysses to my roommate Lesley: Guy 1 refuses to take a bath and goes for a walk on the beach; Guy 2 takes a bath and goes for a walk in Dublin; and Guy 2’s wife bangs sum dood. Between pages 1 and roughly 1,100, there’s a lot of jizz, excrement and nay-saying old ladies. Ulysses could wipe its figurative ass with this blog.

Next up is the film-and-music genre. Being a great benefactor of the arts blah blah blah, I normally wouldn’t rope the two together. But I am currently obsessed with a little Irish movie called “Once,” which marries music and film quite harmoniously. I am obsessed, like I said. It’s about a “bloke,” as they say, who has nothing going for him but his balls and his guitar. Unfortunately his balls aren’t cutting it, so his girl cheats on him with another bloke. This leaves the guitar, which he uses to write songs about the ball betrayal. Here’s one of said songs-like:

So Kristin and I watched “Once” tonight. We both cried real hard. She, due to the movie. Me, due to some Indian shit she got for dinner that blew my head up. Irregardless, see the movie, like, yesterday.

So far today, I’ve learned that Irish women can’t keep their pants on. I’ve also learned about the most heartbreaking thing in the world, which happens to reside in Ireland. It’s called “Ireland’s Teardrop,” and it looks like this:
Fastnet Rock
So-called because this island is the last thing Irelanders see of the Mother Land as they sail off to the U.S. and A. Probably like seeing the woman carrying the trash bags (“The Angel,” as Mom calls her) when you leave Delaware.

So, a recap of Ireland. This little island nation has made great contributions to the arts, as we’ve seen; and to the pathos of all mankind, I find. It’s a long way to the house of Fitzcarraldo, and the Irish have made the journey with pride, song and literary sensibilities, albeit little in the way of suntan.

I’ll leave you with a little ditty that Mr. James Joyce penned just for me:

–There are great times coming, Mary. Wait till you see.
–Ah, gelong with your great times coming.

I am entirely keen on being convinced. It’s a new year. I’ve resolved to be hungover less, in a literary frame of mind more, and probably something involving exercise. And bring on the potatoes. Barmaids too. Tobaccoshopgirls.