Author Archives: Had a Few Beers

Wunderbar super-rare Bavarian bier actually available right down the road … internet proves, again, I’m retarded.

Here’s a deep-dark secret about me that only you and the rest of the English speaking world know. I named this blog, “Had a Few Beers” because I’d had a few beers.

Radical stuff.

I like beer and when I’ve had a few, sometimes the shit I think about during those moments seems funny or interesting to me and I want to share it.

Other times when I have a few beers I go straight for the porn, but that really limits the blogging topics doesn’t it?

Deutsch: aktuelle Markenlogo Bitburger

Mmmm good old predictable Bitburger, no surprises here! (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

But the thing is, when it comes to beer, I’m boring.  I have Plebian tastes. I’m like a person in a restaurant-sampling club that constantly wants to go to McDonald’s.

Restaurant Club member #1: Next week we should sample some Malaysian cuisine.

Restaurant club member #2: That sounds fun, but I’d really like to try that new Somali restaurant everyone’s talking about.

Me: You know the fries at McDonald’s are always fucking delicious. We should totally go there.

When it comes to beer I’m a creature of habit. I want that redundant experience. I want the same taste, I want the same flavor. I’m not looking for the next great summer wheat ale brewed in a virgin’s slipper high atop Mount Beeralvania.

No way, fuck that shit. I want my shitty, redundant, predictable beer experience thank you very much.

That said, much like wine (which I never drink), it doesn’t stop me from learning a bit about different beers or from wanting to understand the differences, the nuances, the complexities and varieties out there. I’m interested.

I know I’ll never be anything close to an expert, and who cares.

Which leads me to Germany and the multitude of different beers this part of Europe offers. They got everything from boring pilsners, to smoked beers to the strongest strongest beer in Germany. I’ll give them all a try.

We moved here in 2007. Almost immediately upon arrival I began to hear about something magical brewing in Bavaria. A beer that was only available in certain parts of the region. It was dark in color, yet somehow light in taste. It left you refreshed while somehow seeming to be thick. It cured cancer, blindness and, if applied directly to the genitals, could issue in an era of world peace.

It was good stuff, or so I’m told. I’m a lazy fucker when it comes to my taste in beer remember?

Winkler Bräu it's made from the tears of beautiful virgins or something ...

Winkler Bräu it’s made from the tears of beautiful virgins or something …

It’s called Winkler Bräu and among a certain set of Americans here in Germany, its a legend.

Soon, among almost any group of Americans I worked with, a business or pleasure trip to Bavaria automatically meant you were obligated to bring back Winkler Bräu. It was as if you were mandated from a higher-power. Should you make the 3.5-hour trip one way, it was your job to return everyone’s empty racks of Winkler Bräu and bring back full ones.  Failure to do such was an affront to all that was good and just in the world. 

I’ve literally stopped on the way home, tired after a long business trip, and Googled the nearest location that carried it. Sometimes I would end up driving miles out of my way to secure the many racks of beer I was expected – nay, mandated by God – to return with.

Bringing back Winkler Bräu is just that important. Forgetting a rack of 20 beers for a buddy can end friendships, wars have or should have been fought over it. You just don’t fuck around when it comes to bringing home the golden nectar.

Because my wife loves it too I picked up a case for her when I was there last week and when I heard a friend was going this week, I dutifully passed on the EUR 20 necessary to purchase another case.  Because apparently you just can’t have enough Winkler Bräu in stock.

And again I don’t even drink it, I just understand that people love it.

Turn to this week. One of my co-workers has something called the “internet.” I don’t really know what that is or what it does, but he seems to have a fine command of it.

During the exchange of euros with those fortunate enough to travel to the promised land in search of Winkler Bräu, he belts out the following:

“Hey, you know that they sell that shit right down the street right? Look right here on Google. You just punch in your address and it shows you where they sell it. They sell it right next to my house, why do you all drive four hours to get it?”

Jackpot still doesn’t allow me to take this job and shove it

I used to think the following fact about me was weird: I gamble and when I win, — win big mind you —  I give the winnings to my wife.

I used to think that most dudes (even ladies) when winning large pots kept their mouths shut when it came to their spouses. Hell, maybe some do, but the more I hear gamblers talk, the more I realize that we tend to share our winnings with our loved ones.

Think about every lottery winner you’ve ever heard talk about what they plan to do with the money.

No one ever says, “Fuck everyone else, I’m keeping all this shit!”

No one does that. It’s all “I’m going to buy my mom and dad the house they’ve always wanted, my wife’s getting her dream vacation and I’m totally having sex with three strippers.”

At least that’s what I’d say.

I bring this up because of two things. First I had a good night conning a bit of luck out of lady luck and second because my wife is insane.

Ding, ding, ding ... yet I'm still moping floors ...

Ding, ding, ding … yet I’m still moping floors …

I was $40 into my bet when I won $630. That’s what I call a “walk away moment.” I don’t care if my drink is still fresh. I don’t care if I just arrived at my game of chance,. I don’t care if the lady next to me is hot, naked and offering me a hand job if I’ll just play a bit more. A return like that is one I have to cash out immediately.

Makes sense right?

I gamble. I enjoy it. Like all gamblers I also have days that I don’t win. Those suck. My rule is pretty simple. Never lose more than $200 and any winnings of $200 or less don’t get reported to the boss.

Actually it’s simpler than that. I play until I’ve had one beer and then quit. Up or down, my rule is one beer and out.

So, there I am Monday $40 into the bet and a half a beer left and shit got real. I was suddenly $630 ahead. Clearly, it was time to quit.

Quit I did.

As I still had half a beer to finish, a fat wallet and time to kill I texted my wife, with a photo of the winnings. Prior to this, we had a deal that I would mop the kitchen floor when I got home that night and I asked, along with the photo of my winnings, if I still had to mop the floor.

She asked how much I had won.

I told her.

She said, “It’s not a grand so yes you do.”

Quickly I queried three female friends of ours about this dilemma. One replied, “You would not have to mop the floor tonight.” One said she, “I would mop the kitchen floor naked for that kind of cash,” and the third wisely ignored me for a while and mocked me several hours later.

In my head I was stuck. Dagmar, as I’ve mentioned before, likes to squirrel away in shoe boxes (despite a robust and healthy banking infrastructure) cash for vacations, rainy days and emergencies.  This bounty would be a hefty addition to her 1930-era investment plan.

Also, I didn’t want to mop the fucking floor.

I called her on the drive home.

Me: Hey, that was a nice win, huh?

Her: It was, awesome.

Me: I can give you 630 reasons why I shouldn’t have to mop the floor tonight.

Her: Whatever, look I’m busy.

Interestingly I could have hired someone to mop my floor naked. Next time.

Interestingly I could have hired someone to mop my floor naked. Next time.

We hung up and I took that to mean that at least for the next 24 hours I was mop-duty free. I mean, $630 has to count for something.

Assuming you’re still with me on this tirade, however, you may have already guessed the outcome.

No, I didn’t mop the floor, but the second phrase out of my wife’s mouth after, where’s the money, was “Why didn’t you mop the floor?”

Ariel Castro won … we’re idiots for thinking otherwise

Let me just start off by taking a very bold stance.

Ariel Castro was a bad man.

Next week I’ll go out on a limb and say Adolf Hitler was kind of a dick and that I’m fairly certain Charles Manson didn’t like cute kittens because he was also a dick.

This, as you have guessed, is about Castro’s suicide in a Cleveland prison Tuesday night. It’s also about why I’m not happy about his suicide, why I’m tired of hearing “Christians” say “rot in hell” about how why his suicide wasn’t much a tax savings after all.

It’s about all these things because I really, really, really wanted that asshole to rot in jail for the rest of his life.

So I’m not happy he’s dead.

You see, I’m a filthy atheist.

So, according to my beliefs (and that’s all they are, no one really knows after all) dead means you cease to exist. No more thought, no afterlife, no internet porn, no beer, nothing.

You simply no longer exist. With that in mind I think Ariel gave us a final “fuck you” before ending the suffering he deserved. I’m shocked the Ohio state prison system didn’t keep a better watch on him but I understand not every prisoner can be monitored 24/7.

Still, his suicide was a final middle-finger salute to each and every one of us. Make no mistake, it was. There are also three young ladies out there that it might be more of an issue with as well.

There seem to be two crowds commenting around this asshole. The “Rot in hell crowd” and the “Tax-dollars saved crowd”.

Both are fucked and here’s why.

The Rot in hell.


… or don’t. Whatever

OK, you Christians have it a bit easier when it comes to this after-death stuff. For us atheists it’s pretty cut and dry. Not for you folks though. And that’s pretty cool. You way of thinking is if you’re good you get to party with Jesus and all the angles, and if you’re bad Satan forces you to watch reruns of Malcolm in the Middle or some shit (I’m not up on my modern interpretations of hell I admit).

So let me just propose a hypothetical to you. I think we can all agree that Castro died of asphyxiation right? There’s no way that jail cell had enough room for him to snap his neck. Asphyxiation takes a bit of time? Up to six minutes, it seems, three of which you are likely to remain conscious. So what if, as he slowly suffocated, his last coherent thought was, “Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, I accept you into my heart even though I am unable to reverse the sin of suicide I repent my actions throughout my life,” or whatever.

My point is — what if at the last moment he accepted Jesus into his heart truly and he regretted what he had done.

He’s in heaven then right? Admit it, if the above is true he’s there with the lord right now.

And you’re not, neener neener.

Again, I don’t believe in either heaven or hell but you’ve got to love a system where a last minute “Sorry I fucked up,” thought is a get out of jail free card.  Try that with your boss at work and let us know how it works!

Let’s say that didn’t happen or maybe it did and Jesus looked on Facebook and Twitter and saw all the rot in hell comments and thought, “Nope, fuck this asshole. Off to hell you go.”

Well isn’t the bible littered with shit about judging? Isn’t that shit kind of shitty, according to the big man? He’s all like, “Look humans I’ll do the fucking judging ’cause I made all of you so you all just chill, OK.”

Christ, even delivering the wrong pizza can send you to hell.

… see, it’s in a cartoon!

No really, that’s what it’s all about … don’t fucking judge people. When a person’s immortal soul is on the line and you weigh in with “burn in hell” well you’re fucking judging. You are. Saying someone deserves to rot in hell is judging.

Look I don’t believe in an invisible-omnipresent person in the sky, but if I did I’d fucking leave the judging to him for fuck’s sake. He, she, it knows everything! I can’t fucking figure out how they seal up a can of beer. Maybe you’ve got it all figured out, but me, I realize I’m not even half as smart as something called “God” and leave that eternal damnation shit to it.

Tax dollars saved.

Lots of folks are saying, “I’m glad he killed himself. He’s saving us tax money.”

That make a bit of sense, or cents, as it is.

Let me ask you this. We’re all friends here, right? If we were both in line for coffee and I asked you for a nickel you’d give me one right? Hell, I’d flip you one if the situation were reversed. It’s a nickel really, and at the end of the day, what’s a nickel?


I think my tax dollars should be used for this type of prison! (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Ohio’s budget in 2011 was about 26 billion. That’s a lot of money. The cost to house a lifetime inmate in 2012 in Ohio was … wait for it … About $20,000 per year. That’s way less than the average family giving me a nickel once a year.

Yeah I know! Look it up, it’s true. It’s the state budget equivalent of your family budgeting my needing a nickel for coffee every year, once a year, for the next 40 years. That’s basically like you and I paying $2 dollars over that amount of time to make sure the fucker suffers, and let me tell you, I’m in on this one. That’s a good use of my tax dollars. Hell, I’d proudly pay that just to make sure that fucker rots. In a cell. Forever.

But it’s too late. He’s gone.

Not going to do it … diaper duty explained

You’re never too old to learn something new about yourself.  If that sounds like some retarded Facebook meme about women’s empowerment or something,  good, it was meant too.

I’m shocked this happened because I’m not 23 years old anymore.  I mean if you’re 23 years old and, if Facebook is any indication at all, you’re learning new shit every moment.

What the fuck does this even mean?

What the fuck does this even mean?

The last thing I learned, before this new thing, was that beer is good.

Really, that’s the last new thing I learned.

But now I know a new thing. Want to know what it is? I’ll tell you.

I don’t ever, ever have to change a baby’s diaper.

Shut up, that’s an awesome thing to realize.

My wife has to change diapers.  You likely have to do it as well, but I don’t ever have to. I never have and I’m pretty confident, I never will.

Suck on it baby diaper changers! Wallow in your human-excrement wiping and look upon me with awe. My hands have only touched my own filth and someone else’s filth during that brief experimentation with scat in the early … well let’s not talk about that.

So I can hear you asking how? How did you do that! How have you never changed a baby? I can hear it even if you aren’t actually asking that and/or have stopped reading already.

It’s easy — I never had children.  In my mind this means I never have to change a diaper, ever.

Stay with me here.

After having recently spent some seriously-awesome time alone with my wife and my 2-year old nephew it dawned on me, “I don’t have to change him, or any kid, ever.”

Despite repeated sexual shots in the dark throughout high school and repeated games of penis-Russian roulette in my early 20s, nothing happened. There isn’t a little half me out there … Anywhere

This qualifies me to look you straight in the eye and refuse, point blank, to touch your little bundle of poo!

IMG_0800I had this epiphany while in the presence of aforementioned toddler nephew who was doing his best impression of a 40-year old man drunk on vodka and full of Mexican food. He smelled like an Port-A-Potty at a Phish concert. He smelled like dog vomit and beer farts kept in a jar for a week. He smelled like teen spirit that’s been left in the hot sun. It smelled like Thai food and bad dreams.

Can I do one more? Thanks.

He smelled like a family in a one-room hut that only ate cabbage, beans and cheese for a year who finally came into a windfall of pork and then stayed around to really sniff their farts.

He smelled bad.

The conversation about changing him went something like this.

Dagmar: Hey your nephew smells kind of ripe.

Me: I know you should change him. Hurry, it’s grossing me out.

Dagmar: Why me? Come on, I’ll help you.

Me: Oh (laughing) that’s never happening. You go ahead. I’ll guard your drink.

Dagmar: What the fuck asshole, it’s your nephew.

Me: Doesn’t matter you’re far more qualified than I am. I’ll only be a hindrance in there. Maybe even a liability. Kind of like the security guys on the first season of Star Trek.

Dagmar: So you’re not going to help me?

Me: Nope, I never had kids. I think that qualifies me for immunity from diaper


Not in photo, ever, me.  (Photo credit: ‘Scratch’)

duty. Even if it doesn’t, it should.

Dagmar: You’re being an asshole; help me find the diaper bag at least.

Me: That’s the maximum amount of effort I’m willing to put into this.

Thankfully my sister-in-law showed up moments later and saved the day, but the point is you should all realize, I was fully prepared to toss my bride under a bus filled with poop.

My logic is this: Because I never had a kid and most of you have, each and every one of you is vastly more qualified to wipe excrement from the nether regions of the “unpotty trained.” This very fact means I’ll never have to do it. Ever! And kids, that’s awesome.

My nephew can ask me for help when he’s 16 and needs to buy a car and let me tell you, checks will be written. If he has problems at 19 that he can’t turn to Mom and Dad with — call Uncle Todd, I’ll be there with sage advice and discreet assistance.

Wiping poop off your 2-year old balls? I get a pass. And I’m cashing that pass in now.

Five vaginas and me… a tale of one man’s woe

My penis is smaller today. I haven’t measured it but I’m fairly certain it’s actually shrunk over the last 48-hours. But I’m also oddly, more in touch with my inner beauty and that’s got to be a plus right? If anyone wants to talk about how they “feel” today just leave a note in the comments section. I’ll be sure to respond.

I’ve just spent the last 48 hours or so with five vaginas … err ladies during a road trip to the Poconos so they could visit Camelbeach Mountain Water Park.

Nails – 1=asphalt nail; 2=asphalt nail with br...

Not number seven!. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I can happily report that none of them killed each other and that I’m basically unscathed.

If you haven’t been following along, and why would you have been honestly, I have just returned from a two-day trip in which my wife, her daughter, her daughter’s partner, her partner’s daughter, her partner’s daughters friend (Jesus Christ that was hard!) and I went to the Poconos to visit a water park.  I’m 43 years old. I don’t have kids of my own and the only thing I’d rather do less than visit a water park is to put a nail up my pee-pee hole.

If you had a gun to my head and was given the option, “Water park, or briefly put a this nail in your pee-pee hole,” I’d have to think about it. I mean the nail shit would be over in moments, right? That’s an hour of being uncomfortable at best.  Really it’s a no-brainer when you think about it.

But no one had a gun to my head nor did anyone offer up the nail option so off to the Poconos we went.

While the three-hour drive there and back was basically uneventful (why do you fucking people insist on doing the speed limit in the passing lane for fuck’s sake!) I did learn a few valuable lessons about the female psyche.

For example, how much fucking aspirin do you fucking chicks need in a given 24-hour period anyway? Why the constant discussions of dosages too? Just take the fucking pill and swallow it. If it’s too much — who cares — and if it’s too little — take more. Also, why does someone always have to not feel good? Why is someone always mad at someone else in the group?  What the fuck is that? Is that some kind of female-pack mentality thing those of us with a penis don’t have the genes to understand? I sure don’t.

Anyway, thanks to the invention of smart phones and head phones no one talked much anyway. Someone in the back of the car would giggle or laugh outright and Dagmar and I would be the only ones to hear them.  Maybe the headphones are a good thing, If they had talked I would have shushed them because I planned on torturing everyone the entire way with NPR talk radio.

Upon arriving in the area I was a bit shocked. I thought the Poconos was some posh place? Why did you lie to me America? I would have settled for, “It has a lot of cheap hotels and tourist-trap bullshit.” Really, I would have been just fine with that. It’s all gaudy bullshit and cheap tourist crap. Which is fine, really, I just thought — hell I don’t know what I thought.

Poconos Heart Shaped Tub

It’s this … (Photo credit: TunnelBug)

If New Jersey ever successfully invades the French Riviera I know what the result will look like,  is all.

The lighthouse of Nice, on the Mediterranean c...

… not this. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’d like to say the water park was a nightmare of epic proportions, but it wasn’t. I was allowed to act as the automatic cash dispenser for the ladies when it came to the bar. In a development I never expected, the water park had a bar right in the middle of it. I was allowed to park my boring ass right at the bar for the duration. I rode not a single vortex o’ pee, nor a “flow of kids screaming like idiots” ride the entire time. In fact, I didn’t even get wet.

It was perfect really.

If you’re above the age of 40 and still enjoy those rides good on you. Really I mean that. I could just not give a fuck is the issue. Call me a killjoy, call me boring, I’d just rather sip cold beers and people watch. All five vagin … I mean ladies … I was with understood that and left me in charge of towel-watching while they frolicked about the park and I put away $6 Corona beers.

I came to find I had company though. I wasn’t the only stick in the mud. More than a few parents confessed they had gone on not a single ride and were happy to let their respective kids run wild while they nursed their alcoholism beside me.

Some asshole, and by asshole I mean a really funny dude, made a point that we had to remain clothed at waterparks in ‘Merica during last week’s blog update.  Which, yeah, I had that coming.

Two last points about the place. America, you’ve lost weight haven’t you? Really you look a bit thinner than last time I was here 18 months ago. What’s your secret? Not all of you of course,  and there could be some confirmation bias going on here, but on the whole, you look thinner. I’d say in another 24 months you’re going to fit into that dress you bought because you don’t, overall, look as fat as I remember. Then again, it was a water park and maybe fat people don’t go to them.

OK, I’m done with the fat jokes.

Point two.

When the fuck did smoking outdoors become regulated? Land of the free indeed. This area had two smoking areas, while outdoors and you couldn’t smoke anywhere but … OK fuck it, Europe is doing that too now. Trouble is in Europe I can’t understand the jeers. Here I can.  “Honey come back here you don’t want to walk over there, that’s where the people smoke, you don’t like smoke do you,” and such. Can you leave us to our coffin nails with a bit of peace, is that too much to ask?

Next up farm country, cows and lots of deer. Dagmar and I are going to kick it into low gear with a quick trip to upstate New York starting tomorrow.

‘Merica! Day one, take two … dispatches from The Seasoned Mariner

After more than 14 hours of constant flights I’m back in ‘Merica! While it’s been less than 24 hours back on the Yankee side of the pond I’m not going to spend an entire blog update bitching about life in the states (yet) but I am going to say it’s always so fucking weird coming back.

While it's not a good view, it's an interesting view.

While it’s not a good view, it’s an interesting view.

Currently I’m at a bar/restaurant called The Seasoned Mariner overlooking, well I’m not really sure what this particular body of water is, nursing a few bottles of Rolling Rock beer.

My wife and her kid are out doing ‘stuff’. Really just stuff, boring stuff that I won’t bore you with because it’s boring, to me at least. I asked them to drop me here, hell they kind of asked if they could drop me here so I’d be less of a pain in their ass and I of course happily agreed.

With the exception of a party of five, having some sort of business meeting turned bull session I have the place to myself.  All in all not a bad deal, it has Wi-Fi, the waitress helped me find a table with power and doesn’t seem to mind serving up endless rolling rock beers to a dude that was overly concerned about having Wi-Fi and a table with power while fiendishly pecking away at a laptop without expressing any interest in ordering food.  Seriously, while I can’t speak to the food, if you’re looking for a place with atmosphere, you could do a lot worse than The Seasoned Mariner in this neck of the woods.

This serves as a great reminder that perhaps my mind does get a little over active

Dagmar said specifically when I was dropped off, don't pick up any hookers and don't get crabs.  So that options out.

Dagmar said specifically when I was dropped off, don’t pick up any hookers and don’t get crabs. So that options out.

when I imagine returning to the U.S. from Europe even if it is only for a quick two-week vacation. American perhaps isn’t as draconian and weird as I remembered after all.

Still though there are some of the things I always find strange upon returning. I can understand every literal word of the business meeting-turned bull session across the room. Sure on base in Germany that’s perfectly normal but anywhere else it’s more the very-rare exception. It’s been a constant eavesdropping session since I cleared customs yesterday. I can’t help myself actually. As a dear friend once told me when we flew back to the U.S. for work after I remarked that we could understand everything anyone was saying he replied, “that’s true Todd and no one is saying shit.”

So prost to that m’friend, prost to that!

So I don’t have too much to say yet about this trip yet. It’s too new, less than 24 hours old as I said.

On Monday we take an overnight trip to a, I hope you’re sitting down, water park! Much like that last time I posted from America when you leave decisions to teenagers, as my step-daughter and wife are keen to do, you and by you I mean I, suffer the consequences.  If there’s a foul mouthed diatribe that endlessly repeats the phrase “MOTHER FUCKING FUCK FUCKERS!” posted sometime on Tuesday you’ll know that trip was a success.

There are few things in America I wish to do, apart from visiting friends and family I mean. Someday I’d like to see Yellowstone National Park and Mount Rushmore. I would, with great enthusiasm, tour any historical civil war battlefield. Alaska, you might be shocked to learn, has an allure to me and maybe someday that’s will be checked off the list.

Water parks, with their throngs of screaming children, are almost literally at the bottom of the list. Truthfully they do not even belong on the list at all. They’re near the top of the list of shit I don’t want to do anywhere in the world, ever. But that’s a different list all together isn’t it?

But I know, I shouldn’t be such a selfish bastard and I won’t be. I won’t be such a selfish shit because, and thanks to the internet this has been confirmed, the park has a bar which I’ve been assured I can have full and unfettered access to. Seems even America has the compassion to be merciful to dipshits such as myself.

Well anyway the business meeting is breaking up and heck, I’ve learned a lot listening in. One of them knows someone that has an antique chair in their basement that’s worth $300. One of them thinks the water bills here are too high and another is married to someone that works for “an agency” on Ft. Meade. He’s so mysterious.

A pleasure boat also just docked and two men are enjoying a corona while a 3 or 4 year old girl plays in some sand nearby. It look utterly peaceful, that’s an afternoon I would enthusiastically embrace if I moved back here.

More in a bit, this rolling rock isn’t going to drink itself.

Packing for a trip with a beer buzz … doesn’t everyone?

When I pack for a trip I like to have a bit of a beer buzz going. Am I the only one who likes doing that?

Packing for Sardinia trip/what's in my bag

I hate this person (Photo credit: miss_yasmina)

  I don’t think women would like to have a buzz when they pack. You ladies put far too much thought into your everyday appearance to even begin to fathom how fun drunk-packing is.
But it is. There’s nothing like arriving at your destination, opening your suitcase and finding out your drunk self totally forgot socks came in pairs. Or that drunkyou thought a collection of plaid shirts with striped pants was a … OK, that’s hyperbole, but you get the idea.
Packing when you’re drunk creates little magical surprises for you on the other end of the trip.
Either I like packing while drunk or I hate traveling so much that I drown my sorrows. Or maybe its both. I’m never really sure if its both. I guess that’s  because I’m normally drunk while packing, and traveling, and pondering which I hate more — but that’s a shitty blog intro don’t you think?
So yeah, we’re headed back to the United States in a few short hours. The flight is officially less than 24 hours away and I can’t tell you how excited I am to become reacquainted with my love-hate relationship with flying.
From the agony of security, the absolute joy of customs and the encouraging fact that every airport has a bar open somewhere no matter the time or … oh wait, that’s not true in America.
I just love cross-Atlantic flights.
From the weird antiseptic smell of the international lounge in Frankfurt, to the germ-filled aluminum flying tube, to the unprepared customs pods on the east coast awaiting our flight, I am fucking pumped. By pumped, I of course mean I need another drink, which I think explains why – as the departure clocks ticks away – I‘m still staring at unpacked bags.
Airport Security Playmobil

This is really a thing? (Photo credit: nedrichards)

I’ve had the opportunity to fly a lot for work. A couple of years ago I flew so often that in just a few short weeks I had racked up more frequent flyer miles crossing the “pond” than any sane person ever could have. It was literally a week in the states, a week back in Germany, two weeks in the states, a week in Germany … you get the idea. I racked up tons of miles back then. Most of them are gone now, but I was able to parlay the last few measly ones into an upgrade for my wife and me on this flight.  Barring another gig that requires frequent cross-Atlantic hopping, it may very well be our last.  

She doesn’t fly much. When she does it’s always with me, on vacation and short. She doesn’t understand what a pure and divine blessing this upgrade is. First-world problems I know, but fuck you I’m writing this you’re not.
I’d write more, but fuck, I’ve got to go pack.

How much do you pay for your pussy . . . cat.

How much is your cat worth?

If you answer that by adding the cost of ammunition with how much time you’ll spent cleaning up the mess, you’re simply not helping.

And if you’re wondering what a skinned cat goes for on the open market, you’re also not helping. You’re also kind of a sicko. For the record the answer to that question, assuming the skinned cat is average-sized, is 18 cents. I’ve asked that very question myself.

I mean what is the fucking cat’s worth in dollars and cents if your wife loves the


Total value of all parts, 18 cents (Photo credit: @Doug88888)

fool beast with all her heart? Then what’s it worth?

I was actually just ripped away from writing this piece by my wife so I could go to the window to watch the cat do something retarded in the backyard.

That retarded something was watching the idiot beast roll around in dirt. Yeah, I know, it’s a natural defense mechanism many creatures on our earth participate in to defend themselves against skin irritants, but my wife found it cute.

We don’t have our own penis-in-vagina-made kids, and we certainly don’t have any actual children in the house, apart from myself I mean, so I think she dotes on the mouse catcher a bit more than most.

Or she’s just easily amused, who knows?

So I again ask the question, what’s that particular cat, in my set of circumstances worth — its well-being, its continued existence, its quality of life — what is that worth, if you were in my shoes?

Putting further parameters on the question: What’s all that worth over a two-week period when you’re gone? How much would you pay, in hard-earned cash to ensure that the beast is at least fed, watered and kept clean? Tack on the additional love and attention and what’s that cat sitter worth to you, dollars and cents wise.

I said $200, and that apparently means I’m spending all my money on hookers and heroin, because I think $200 is an insane amount to pay anyone for such services.

I bring all this up because that’s exactly what I recently paid a college kid visiting her parents here in Europe for the summer. The way I calculated that sum is described as this. Poor college kid, kid needs money, kid had to come to my house to perform the duties, we’re not poor (we’re not rich but really, we’re not poor), and don’t be a dick.

Mr. Burns

Not me. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Seriously, the kid had to come to our house. Meaning they have to borrow mom or dad’s car or be driven by a parent in order to complete the task each and every time. It’s also Europe. Europe is expensive. I realize it’s not my duty to fund a kid’s free-time activities while visiting mom and dad in Europe over summer vacation, but I’m also not going to turn into the Simpson’s Mr. Burns character either.

We’re faced with a similar situation in that we need help with the cat duties again. But this time we’re asking a friend watch the cat in her own house. So literally, all she has to do is not kill it. Not killing a cat, unlike the assholes that answered the lead of this blog with, “How much do bullets cost,” is the easiest thing to do. The person watching our cat while we fly back to the U.S. for vacation could, I know for a fact, not feed or water the beast for the entire two weeks and the little flea bag would likely survive the ordeal. Sure, Abby the cat (I think that’s its name) will have to drink toilet water, but who hasn’t done that? Everyone’s done that, right?

Here’s the part I can’t make up in a million years — the agreed upon price for cat sitting in her own home is  $100 bucks and a carton of Marlboro Lights (really the bar isn’t high with this person). If you don’t smoke, let me help you out with some basic math, a carton of name brand cigarettes here is about $45 on post.

So let’s add this all up. For a week college kid has to drive at least 20 minutes one way to feed, water, poop scoop and play with the retarded skin bag of claws my wife calls “her baby.” Two hundred dollars is a crazy fucking amount that no sane person would pay. Paying a person $145 to watch a cat for two weeks that she has at her home while she’s unemployed anyway, is totally, however, completely reasonable.

On top of all this lets all reemmber that the pussy was in fact free.

Here’s another fun married fact that cracks me up because it’s so very 110 percent the kind of thing my wife does.

This morning Dagmar called and mentioned she was going to the bank to get a money order for $3,500. This struck me as odd because I had no idea what the money order was for but it sounded like something I should know about.

I pressed her for more information. It turns out that she, throughout the last 12 months or so, has been saving up money on the side. On the side as in not in


Tons of change (Photo credit: spcbrass)

the bank, but in a shoebox or some shit, for our trip to the U.S. This fact alone cracks me up because, well, we’re not children of the depression and she could have easily just deposited it in the bank every time there was a decent amount collected. She saved this amount by, a yard sale, endlessly vacuuming up my loose change and who fucking knows what else. But shit, $3,500 is a nice amount Bella, good job!

But why the money order? I asked this question and received a sane and well thought out answer if the year was 1956.  She wants a money order because she would be crazy to carry that much cash with her back to the U.S. Which, technically is true. It would be crazy, more crazy than having $3,500 just lying around the house anyway. When I suggested that she could — and this is a very radical idea — deposit it in our joint account and then withdraw it via ATM once we’re in the states — she replied that I was a genius and that I was the greatest … well she just agreed that I might have a point.

A friend that I’ve long since lost touch with once told me that couples don’t argue about how much money there is (or isn’t), they argue about how the money is allocated. But they were likely quoting Dr. Phil, so fuck them.

Thing is though, I always looked back on that statement during times like this and thought, holy shit, that’s a good call. Dagmar and I do this all the time.

I think, like a lot of couples, we tend to divide the roles up when it comes to money. If we were a corporation, I’d be in charge of the long-term financial strategy and she’d be CEO of day to day operations, watching what’s being spent on the here and now.

It’s just fun to occasionally poke the CEO of the day to day operations in the eye. But if she ever blogs about the long term CEO investment strategy, I’m screwed.

German, American community yard sale fun and by fun I mean misery

Dagmar called me Friday and asked, “Do you want to sell your golf clubs?”

“My golf clubs are a collection of failed titanium dreams and but they are something I love. Don’t you dare touch them, they are sacred to me,” I replied in a panic.

She asked this question because she was cleaning out the house in order to participate in a community yard-sale.  This yard sale is in Germany, on the economy, and she’s doing it because she hates weekends.

yard saleIf you’re unfamiliar with Germany let me lay it out for you. Its got rain, cold, snow, cold, more rain, occasional hail, sleet, rain and cold. Basically, the weather in Germany is attempting to destroy your soul for 10 months of the year. So, when there is sunshine and warm weather I want to be on the beach soaking up sunlight and drinking beer.

For the love of all things sane, I don’t want spend those precious days selling crap at a yard sale.

Dagmar disagrees because she’s insane.

She heard about the yard sale during her furlough day from a mutual friend who I plan to kill soon for that indiscretion. I knew from the moment she called me with the “suggestion” about the yard sale that I was “husband fucked” and that I was indeed going to have to do it.  Any plans I had otherwise for the weekend were destroyed the minute our mutual friend said to my wife, “You know they’re having a community yard sale this weekend?”

We’ve only had one other yard sale in our lives together and that was in the states in the late ’90s. During the brief time I was left alone during that yard sale a person asked me if I was willing to sell something for $5. Dagmar had marked it as $10. I told the man, “Dude if you don’t buy that I’m literally going to throw it away.” Never tell a yard-sale person this because, yeah I ended up giving it to him for free. Don’t tell Dagmar.

Fast forward to last Saturday. I resigned myself to my fate, what else can you do? She trolled the house for salable crap we owned and Saturday morning at the ungodly hour of 6:30 am, I loaded up the car and off we went into whack job land because German community yard sales are insane.

When we arrived we were accosted by several people of questionable sanity/nationality asking us in broken English, “Do you have gold, do you have computer, do you have shoes?”

This was moments after we arrived and we were just getting out of the car. I hadn’t even had coffee yet. I was confused and annoyed at the same time, I was confannoyed, which is something I just now made up!

These people I was later told are “resellers.” And fuck them, they’re annoying.

The next surprise, at the lovely hour of 7 a.m. on a Saturday morning, was that the organizers were completely baffled by the fact that a parking lot next to a hotel had mysteriously been filled with cars, during the night! I should point out that this community yard sale was organized by Americans on a part of an American installation in Germany open to everyone. Anyone can, and apparently does, drive and park in the area. So despite the best efforts of seven parking cones, the “plan for the setting up of tables” had been thwarted.

If you haven’t already gathered, Germans don’t just chuck their used shit on their driveway and call it a yard sale. No they do it as a community, which makes sense if you think about it. More sellers mean more buyers, or something. I’ve never really thought about yard sales but that’s the basic idea, I think.

But a yard sale of that scale has to be organized, I mean fuck, we’re in Germany after all. They’d organize chaos if they could and I think just have.

So entering into the yard sale area we approach the American organizer and discover he’s an idiot. Maybe idiot is too strong a word. He has the lot planned out, with space for all the participants but the cars have really fucked his plan. This is when I learn that yard sale people are really, really picky about their spots. See you had to sign up for a spot at this yard sale. For the low cost of $20 you get a spot and a table, not a bad deal. Only some people, as I said, are really fucking picky about their spots.

“I paid for these two spots, right near the entrance!” and “I paid for this spot because …” I tried to zone these insane yard sale monsters out.

English: A Stack of 1$ Bills with 100 on the o...

English: A Stack of 1$ Bills with 100 on the outside (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Look Mr. Yard Sale manager, I paid for this spot and could give a shit less. Just shove me in somewhere so I can unload my filthy bunch of crap and make a step toward ending this day,” I told him. With a sympathetic sigh he shoved us in a corner and went back to dealing with the monsters.

Once the crap was unloaded and set up on our rented table Dagmar, thankfully not me, dealt with a crowd. I’d already had enough.

This particular yard sale attracted early shoppers that want shit for free, as in “Can I have this for free?” If I had my druthers, I would have weighed the “pain in the ass of having to cart that item unsold back to my house,” against the fact that, “I hated being up and out of the house at 7 a.m. on a Saturday,” against the fact that we “hadn’t used this particular piece of shit in years,” and concluded that if I just gave it all away I could be home in approximately 45 minutes.

Dagmar, not so much.

As the day progressed I was given attitude-adjustment medication in the form of beer. She knows me so well.

I also made an important discovery about my bride — she was a fucking third-world merchant in a previous life.

“Have a look at these purses ma’am,” she squawked at a passerby as I sunk into my folding chair and tried to hide. The purse she was hawking was hideous. I think someone who grew up in El Paso spent a little too much time at the markets in Juarez, is all I mean.

As the day wore painfully on, the crowd thinned and I broke out the kindle. I was reading something deep that, for me at least, took a bit of concentration. I had to read a sentence, think it through and then move on. Dagmar had nothing to read. Do you see where this is going? Yeah it was all: Read the sentence, Dagmar asks a mundane question, read the same sentence again, Dagmar asks another mundane question, read the same sentence again … you get the point.

All said she made $380 bucks. I would have gladly paid $380 to not have to make $380 bucks, but she’s awfully proud of the $380 bucks and I guess that’s what matters at the end of the day.

Furlough fun day! A blog post with 20 percent fewer jokes

Hi and welcome to the first installment of Furlough Fun Day!*

I guess I could have called it Furlough Monday but it doesn’t have the same ring to it. Come to think of it, federal employees who are furloughed on Fridays have all the good names.  Furlough Friday people get all the breaks.

Anyway, this is the first in a series of what I hope is only one blog written on my furlough day.

If you haven’t been following along with the news let me bring you up to speed.

FurloughDepartment of Defense employees are being forced to take a day off every week, which is awesome. We are also being forced to take this day off with no pay, which is not awesome. All told it equals a 20 percent pay cut.

As a result, this blog is going to be 20 percent less funny. (Math jokes are tough to write. That was the best I could do.)

I think technically during the furlough day, I’m not legally employed by the government. I can’t get another job during that day, but I’m not “technically” not a federal employee on furlough day either. That fact opens a lot of creative windows actually.

*Cough* Is it just me or does Gen. Dempsey look just a little bit like Gollum from

I'm just saying if you were viewing a line up could you tell who stole the elf bread?

I’m just saying if you were viewing a line up could you tell who stole the elf bread?

Lord of the Rings?

There. I’ve committed an act of civil disobedience and I feel awful.  Gen. Dempsey is a great man and a great leader.  I suck at civil disobedience.

Anyway, it would have been great if Dagmar and I had the same furlough day off but we don’t. She has Fridays off and I have, as you know, Mondays off. At first, the lizard part of my brain thought, HA! This is awesome, PORN PARTY on my day off. But after some rethinking, it kind of sucks because three day weekends together would rock harder than even the best porn party. Actually porn party sounds really, really pathetic.

But, as I said, we don’t have the same day off. This fact highlights a basic difference between us. She spent her day off in productive productivity and I spent my first day off curled up on in a ball of “damaged-dignity-hangover-smell” on the couch. That’s why I didn’t write this last Monday.  Between dry heaving into the toilet, crying and fiendish masterba … well I was really hung-over.

I did wash the windows though. She told me that was my chore and by-god I did it. By contrast she did five loads of laundry, the dishes, dusted the upstairs, mopped upstairs, ironed four of my shirts, extensively cleaned the cat litter box (extra hard because I had neglected it), changed the bed linen, called her daughter and purged the bar of old and no longer drinkable spirits.

So I’m feeling pretty good about my accomplishment.

Anyway I think the only thing from this point forward is to have a contest between Dagmar and I. Call it: Who used their unpaid day off the wisest. I’ve taken the liberty of drawing up a quick score sheet for everyone reading so they can keep track of who is winning.

Category Todd Dagmar
Hours of Porn Viewed 2 0
Windows washed All of them 0
Windows rewashed because of the shitty job done the first time 0 All of them
Episodes of Family Guy viewed 7 0
Episodes of Family Guy not viewed because of napping 3 0
Naps 3 0
Legs shaved 0 2
Episodes of the Today show about summer flip flop fashion   viewed 0 1
Number of dry heaves in the toilet 8 0
Crying silently 4 0
Video Games played 3 0
Number of balls scratched 2 0
Poops 3 1
Floors mopped 0 5
Beds made 1 1
Beds changed 0 1
Shirts ironed 0 4
Cat poop cleaned 0 All of them
Retarded decisions 7 0
Total 4,659 14

So clearly, as you can see (math doesn’t lie friends) I’m winning the furlough fun day competition.

*I’m really, really not smart enough to comment on the politics of furloughs. I’m not. I know my wife and I can weather it and be OK. I know a lot of my friends can, and will. But I also know that a lot of my friends and co-workers out there are seriously affected by this and I hope they don’t take offense to what I just wrote. Furlough and sequestration is, at the end of the day, not very funny at all. To a lot of folks, a 20 percent pay cut is no laughing matter. At the end of the day, it isn’t to us either. If I’ve offended anyone, I’m sorry.