Friday, 30 September 2011

Lagavulin 16

So.  Lagavulin.  A little background on this one.  I tend to go through a lot of electronics.  My last-gen stuff usually ends up getting donated to my sister or niece or nephew.  This time, when my friends Schmeck and Kate mentioned they were looking for an mp3 player, I was quick to bring up my dust-collecting, 1st gen iPod touch.

They were happy to get an mp3 player, I was happy to help out some friends, and Jen was ecstatic to get one more item removed from a counter top.  But when I dropped off the iPod, they seemed a little confused.  I think they were thinking I was talking about my old nano and not the fancier iPod touch.  Schmeck started insisting on payment.  After all, this iPod was a purchase that nearly gave Kate a stroke when she found out the sticker price back when I bought it.

I eventually relented and suggested a bottle of scotch for payment.  At least it would be something I could share with Schmeck.  A little while later Schmeck e-mailed and apologetically explained how he had just purchased the bottle in question but totally missed that he had picked up an Islay malt.

Islay malts are not my favourite.  In fact, I've only ever had one bottle from the Islay region that I've been satisfied with.  And that was a Lagavulin.  And that was also received in payment for another obsolete piece of equipment.  So, I was game.  I admonished Schmeck for picking up a bottle that far exceeded the value of a 5 year old iPod with a cracked screen but I still went along with the trade.

Memories of Islay malts past still haunt my memories so I was prepared for the aroma.  It is the smell of a sweaty gym sock that somebody has used to mop up some spilled rubbing alcohol.  I wasn't deterred though.  I remember my previous Lagavulin as easily overcoming that smell with a full-bodied, smooth burn followed by a crisp and clean finish.  And this bottle matches that memory for the most part.  It's just that there's a lot more gym sock than I remembered.

The other thing I like about Lagavulin compared to other Islays is that it doesn't seem to have the salt content that the others have.  I think that lack of sea salt and the super clean finish is what really sets a quality Islay apart from the standard fare.  I may find the aroma and taste challenging and not entirely agreeable but I appreciate that neither hangs around to remind me of those facts.

So, Schmeck, drop by any time.  There will be some left in the bottle I'm sure.  I'm interested in your take on it.

As good as an Islay gets.  3 shots.

Wednesday, 28 September 2011


"Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self-esteem, first make sure that you are not, in fact, simply surrounded by assholes."

- William Gibson


Thanks William Gibson!

Sunday, 18 September 2011


Who would I like to punch in the face this week?


Yup, the whole network.  For ruining what was once the best pre-game football show, my fist needs to meet their face at rapid velocity.

NFL Countdown is now 3 hours long. So what?  More is better right?  That's the same thinking that grew the list of commentators from 4 to every retired player and coach that ever played professional football.

It's just too much.  You were already an hour longer than every other pre-game show. Now you're two hours longer. Congratulations. What are you going to fill that extra hour with?  Touching tributes, emotional stories, and, please, as much Kenny Mayne as humanly possible.

It's fucking ridiculous.

Thanks for listening.

Thursday, 15 September 2011

TBone's Stolen Movie of the Week - Bridesmaids

Man, so much good buzz about this movie this summer!  EVERYBODY loved this flick.  EVERYBODY!  Can't miss, right?

Oh, man, did it miss.  I laughed out loud twice.  That's it.  The rest of the running time, I spent cringing.  This is a movie about awkward social situations from start to finish.  I didn't like the main character and I didn't like the supporting characters.  It was fucking horrid.

If somebody tells you that this is just as good as The Hangover, punch that person in the face.  It is a lie.  So glad I didn't pay for this travesty.

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

What's TBone Watching?

Project Runway...




Who would I like to punch in the face this week?

Seriously, fuck this guy.  Fuck his prolific passing.  Fuck his accurate arm.  Fuck his stupid fucking hair.  Fuck his fucking five hundred yards.  I watched the first three quarters of the first Monday night football game of the season last night and all I heard was Ron Jaworski verbally lick Tom Brady up and down all night.  It was fucking ridiculous.  He wasn't THAT great.  He was still missing receivers.  Only a couple in 3 quarters, but still... not perfect.  So, apparently he lit it up in the last quarter.  And apparently the Miami defense can't handle heat and humidity and overbearing handsomeness.  As a Fin Fan, I can tell it's going to be a long season.  I'm out 5 bucks too as my Dad Brady-baited me into a bet on the game.  So, again, fuck this guy.

Monday, 12 September 2011

Wedding Windup

At the start of this year, we knew of 5 weddings we would be attending this summer.  Ended up that 2 of those were scheduled for the same day.  Freaking engineers, the date of September 10, 2011 (9/10/11) was irresistible to their numerical brains.

Rob and Andy were first to the post office though so were going to their wedding and the plan was I would drive up to Ottawa for the next day BBQ with Ash's new in-laws.  Not ideal but the only way I could figure out to show my support for everybody.

Rob and Andy had organized their wedding around a harbour cruise in Toronto.  I've recently described how my blood pressure spikes while being in Toronto so I don't need to go over it again.  But this time, Jen and I were in separate vehicles and that seemed to double my stress as I attempted to drive one car with my hands and feet and a whole other car through the power of my mind.

We eventually made it to the right parking lot and I even lucked into a very truck-friendly spot.  We made our way out to the boat and once we sat down, I could feel all the stress leaving my body.  Being on the water is so relaxing.  I really should have brought my fishing gear.

The ceremony was great though I didn't have the best view.  Emotional but with a definite sense of humour and a beautiful setting out on the harbour.  I was truly honoured they had asked us to be part of their day.

After the ceremony, we made our way back to the dining deck.  People were asked to make speeches if they were so inclined.  One person accepted that invitation.  An individual who stood about 6'6" in what looked to be about 4" heels and a sleeveless dress that showed that this person had spent at least some time in a gym.  I can only assume this person is a professional who rents out his services for anyone who wants a wedding to contain an embarrassing wedding speech like the ones you see in Hugh Grant movies.  There were many threats to reveal parts of Rob's history that some may deem inappropriate for a wedding ceremony.  But details were thankfully in short supply.

Rob seemed to be doing a good job in steering the speaker off the microphone but then, to my utter horror, Andrea started heckling the speaker.  The drag queen's attention was then square on our table and she was coming over.  Crap.  I'm a fight or flight kind of guy and since this individual looked like he could easily introduce me to an emergency room I was doing a survey of the windows behind me and whether I could fit through one of them.

But it was too late.  He was at our table and while he and Andrea traded witticisms, I stared directly at my bread plate.  And I stared hard.  I'm surprised the plate didn't shatter under the weight of my gaze and my desperate wish to be anywhere else.

Eventually things settled down and I was able to make a run to the bar.  Rob, Andy, if you happen to read this, I really did have a good time, thanks again for inviting us and congratulations on a memorable day!

The boat docked around 11:00 and after some back and forthing and saying goodbye  to Jen, I was on the road heading to Ottawa at 11:30.

The plan was to drive for an hour to get out of Toronto and find a hotel for the night.  When I hit Bowmanville though, I was feeling pretty good.  I figured I'd grab a Monster and make a run for Kingston at the very least.

The Monster didn't last long.  By the time I got to Kingston, I was struggling.  So I pulled off at another service center, found the darkest corner I could, cleared out the rear bench and curled up for a nap.  This was about 2:30.  The last time I'd slept in my car was a couple days before Schmeck's wedding when I drove out to St. John.  I was driving a 2 door Civic back then.  I was a little skinnier back then but not much.  The F150 is quite a bit more comfortable.

I woke up around 4:30 and thought I was ready to hit the road again.  I wasn't.  I drove another half hour and then pulled off in some small town and had another nap in an LCBO parking lot.  One more hour and I was ready to make the final leg up to Ottawa.

I had to make it.  I had to put in some kind of appearance even if it was a day late.  Ash was a great friend through high school and stayed one throughout all my relocations.  He and Jim and Sean and Nuno made sure I didn't disappear into a self-imposed shell during my less than historic high school years.  I'm ashamed to say that I probably would have lost contact with these guys if it wasn't for Facebook.  But Ash was always on the ball and made sure we always had up to date contact info.  When Ash is your friend, you have a friend for life.  A stand up guy and I was very disappointed I wasn't there for his big day.

But I made it to the BBQ.  Not in the best of shape but I seemed to fit in alright with the hangover cases that were on display there.  Missed most of the guys I knew from Manitouwadge but was able to shake Ash's hand and congratulate him at the very least.  I still feel like I missed out on contributing so I'll be picking up the bar tab in Sudbury for years to come until the guilt dissolves.

So, that's it.  No more weddings this year!  Seriously, I'm always happy for those people that find each other and want to make that commitment to each other and all the best to those couples who tied the knot this year but weddings are stressful ventures for all involved and I've had enough to last for quite a while.  So no more this year. And there is nothing in the foreseeable future!

Or is there?


Saturday, 10 September 2011


Who would I like to punch in the face this week?

Every single perky, upbeat teenager who wanted to wash my car this morning.  Yes, I appreciate your skimpy attire and I ordinarily would be more than happy to help out the CF charity, but I'm in my car and I have places to go.  Get in MY face and I will run you down and THEN punch you in YOUR face.   Set up your little operation off in the parking lot and wave your little signs but come up to me at a stop sign like some hobo with a squeegee and you can expect some attitude.

And what fucking adult is organizing this venture and thinks it's okay for a dozen kids to be getting in motorists faces while standing on the median separating 4 lanes of traffic?  Yah, that guy needs a punch in the face too.

What's TBone Watching?

X-Men: First Class!

Yah, pretty good.  Definitely redeems the series after the horrible dive it took with X-Men 3 and Wolverine.  I'll take a shit on Wolverine: X-Men Origins all day and all night, BUT, Wolverine stole THIS friggin movie with his 15 second cameo.  Freaking hilarious.  Actually the sense of humour ran throughout and really helped the movie along.

Not great, but definitely worth a watch.

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

What's TBone Watching?

Something Borrowed.

Not a movie I borrowed.  The movie's title is Something Borrowed.  You can google it.  I don't want the imdb link to dirty my blog.

I knew that Jen and I had different tastes in movies.   I'm your typical white-male-angst type movie fan (Platoon, Fight Club, Seven, early Tarantino) with a bit of geek thrown in (Batman, X-Men, MST3K).  Whereas Jen is your typical girl (Dirty Dancing, I don't think I need to list any more, that about sums it up).

So Jen picked tonight's movie.  And she picked Something Borrowed.  And I lasted 20 minutes.  Buh.  I either had to leave the room or start yelling at the TV.  Brutal.

Tomorrow I get my revenge though.  I"m thinking X-Men: First Class!

The Kijiji Rush

Sold my first item on Kijiji last Monday. What an experience. My trusty trailer had to be sold. I bought it 6 years ago and it has seen me through a basement renovation, 4 moves, a couple piano relocations, several camping trips and countless fishing trips. It was a fantastic little tool. But with the truck, it just didn't make much sense.

So, I posted my first ad on Kijiji.  Several people I know use Kijiji on a frequent basis and shared many stories of rapid sales.  But I was hesitant.  I'm not a fan of people in general but people who buy used items really creep me out.  I just hate the bartering.  Look, this is the price, either pay it or move in.  I'm not interested in continuing this relationship beyond the price I've asked for my item.  You think that price is too high?  Fuck off then.  The first people that came to look at Jen's car were the worst example of these type of people.  It was all "Oh buddy look at the scratches" and "Oh buddy did you hear that noise?" and "Oh buddy is that an oil leak?" and "Oh buddy I couldn't possibly go any higher than a $1000 less than the ridiculously low price you were asking for this car".  I was so happy when a sensible Northener ended up outbidding that prick by $500.

But back to my trailer.  Six p.m. the ad went up.  6:05 came my first inquiry by e-mail.  And it was a steady stream after that.  I don't know if people set up alerts for trailers or what, but it was kind of spooky how quickly people were finding out about my trailer.  I had priced the trailer at $600, hoping to get $500.  I know, I know, what happened to "This is my price or fuck off" stance?  I just wanted the trailer gone so I decided to play the game.  Sure enough, those that didn't have technical questions were all stating "Would you take $500?".  People from all over Southern Ontario were contacting me but there was one guy who lived about 10 blocks away who said he could come right over.  He came over, looked at the trailer, gave me my $500, and drove away with it.


8:00 p.m.!

Two freaking hours and I had completed my transaction.  Amazing.  What's more, when I came back inside, there was an e-mail from a guy saying "DON'T SELL THE TRAILER! I'LL PAY ASKING PRICE!".  Felt kind of bad.  But not really.  I was actually feeling kind of exhilarated. My brother had described his first Kijiji sale and how he then went on a selling rampage, listing pretty much everything his wife and kids would let him.  I wasn't going to go overboard but the thrill of the quick sale does get the adrenaline going a bit.  Ah, the sad little highs of suburban life!


Tuesday, 6 September 2011

TBone's Stolen Movie of the Week - Fast Five

I gotta be honest, this isn't a movie I would ever pay for. I watched the original The Fast and The Furious many years ago and haven't really paid attention to the three sequels that came inbetween. So I was kind of shocked when I heard rumours that the latest installment in the series was supposed to be pretty good.

I still wasn't going to pay for it though. So, when Jen said she was in the mood for some cinematic beefcake, I sparked up the bit torrent.

And, I'm sorry, but this is a terrible fucking movie. The big selling point for this sequel is that it is no longer about the street racing but more of a heist movie. And this is a good a heist movie as the first one was a racing movie. As soon as Paul Walker says "We're going to need to get a team together" I had had enough of this flick. It tries pretty hard to be Ocean's Eleven and fails at every point.

The "team" is a bunch of people I assume I'm supposed to recognize from previous sequels. But I don't know who they are therefore I really don't give a shit about them. Besides it seems that they rewrote their characteristics whenever it suited this particular sequel.

And just a special note about Paul Walker. He is a terrible actor. Terrible. He makes Keannu Reeves appear expressive and emotional by comparison. I can only assume he was doing some special "favours" for the producer that got him starring roles in each of these retarded films. You have Vin Diesel and the fucking Rock in this flick, what the fuck are you doing putting Paul Walker in there? It's like bringing a hamster/poodle cross to a rottweiler convention.

Ugh. Anyways, Jen seems to be enjoying the beefcake. Meanwhile I've yet to see one boobie. Total waste. Skip it.