Friday Fives – a melange of fluffy content

Mandala Art For Sale Online Thailand | Royal Thai Art

What is the most beautiful thing you have ever seen?

Probably Railay beach in Thailand.  After that, maybe the Amazon river running through the jungle in Peru.  Lastly?  Your sister!   

great swimming beach - Review of Railay Beach, Railay Beach, Thailand -  Tripadvisor

What is your greatest dream in life?

To live the life I am living.  Bonus?  If was a professional writer instead being a cubicle monkey. That is nobody’s fault but my own. I didn’t hustle enough. I love writing, and I never wanted it to be a chore.

 What is the best book you have ever read?

Alice’s Adventure’s in Wonderland

*** that was not a set up to talk about Alice, I swear. But since you brought it (technically, they did.  The nice people over at Live Journal did.  I just picked up yet another edition of the book.  It is illustrated by my favorite painter, Salvador Dali!!!!!!!

It just came out a year or two ago, and I am SO tickled.  Like Steadman, Dali is the perfect mind and visionary for this sort of stuff.  I now have several different illustrated editions:  there is the one you have, which is the official one.  It was illustrated by John Teniel.  Then, I got one which is the writer himself, Charles Dodgeson Lewis Caroll..  That one isn’t too good, and you see why he hired that job out.   THEN… I knew about a Ralph Steadman one, but it was my white whale.  I looked for it for 30 years and finally found one.  The book that arrived was so very clearly a school textbook that was stolen.  It is beautiful.

You know Ralph Steadman, right?  He is this guy, the guy who does all Hunter Thompson’s books.  I have spent time with Ralph, he is a goddamn delight!

and now I have the Salvador Dali illustrated one.  I am quite pleased.  I have a big fat annotated one, too.  I prolly mentioned this before, but did you know that my first tattoo will be an Alice in Wonderland one?  I made myself wait to get a tattoo until I was 40.  That way, I would not regret it.  I picked out this piece.  It is Ralph Steadmans’ drawing of the White Rabbit

funny thing is, I am now 48 and still haven’t gotten it done, yet.  I have no wavered one second on what the tattoo will be, I just don’t where were to pit

What is your most cherished childhood memory?

I have a LOT, and they are all good.  I am too tired to get sentimental, though.  Let’s see if I can find the story about lab Maury girl almost destroying Christmas.  It’s a great story, and I am mostly sharing so I don’t have to type out a new anecdote.  Plus, the ones that a real personal?  I ain’t sharing that with you!

Found it!  This truly is a great, and 100% true, story.   Rather than embed, and make this piece any longer than necessary, here is the link.  It just takes you back to this page, but back many years when I wrote it.

A Christmas Story of dogs, disasters, and a Christmas Miracle!

Posted on

What is your best character trait or strength?

I believe myself to be kind, funny, and decently interesting.  Doesn’t mean that I am… just that I hope I am… and think I am.

Friday Fives – more free content edition

America, apparently my editor doesn’t read my emails. I sent him my idea for questions yesterday. You can see that post below. Normally, he would write back and say “great, let’s use those’. He and I both do Friday Fives, and its the exact same questions. You can find him here.

…anyhow, he clearly did not see my email and instead sent me his list ideas. I didn’t see them until today, but I like them. So… why not?

Kate McKinnon - Emmy Awards, Nominations and Wins | Television Academy
my future ex wife, Kate McKinnon

What would you do with a cardboard box?

I’d make a trap, and catch Kate McKinnon.  After she got over the initial anger, we would be great friends and in time… legendary collaborators.  It hasn’t all been peaches and herb, though.  We got into a fight on billing, me thinking we’d be known as ‘Lang & McKinnon’… or ‘Lang & Mac’.  Her choice, I am not a monster.   SHE thought since she was super famous and beloved and talented that her name should be first.

Oh, and let the record reflect, this isn’t a rape or sexual thing.  She is Lebanese… prefers the girls.  I respect that.  I just want to be her friend.

Is this going to be read back in court one day?  (ed note:  yes)

It was a fair point, after all.  Me having issues with conflict, I instead just screamed ‘who kidnapped who?’ and I hit her again with the cattle prod.  Boy is she pissed.  She won’t even speak to me anymore.  But that may be more the duct tape than her pride.  And that is what we call a Ginsburn

What are some polite ways to say “fuck off”?

I invented this wonderful and terrible word – ‘DUNK’.  I can tell ‘dunk!’ in the car with anyone and no one would be offended.  They should be.  It’s a contraction too horrible to spell out, so use your imagination as to what it stands for.  Mostly its used in driving and traffic.

Which celebrity’s death hit you the hardest and why?

Chris Cornell.  I truly don’t think he meant to die.  I think it was a terrible accident and he was very foggy and made a bad decision.  Yes, I know he had a history of depression.  Here is what I mean – Kurt Cobain really wanted to kill himself.  Remember before he succeeded, he overdosed in Rome.  My point being, had he not succeeded that night up in that guest house… he would have tried again in a day or 3 until he succeeded. 

I don’t think that would have been the case with Chris.  He was on such a career peak, too!  He was reunited with Soundgarden.  He had brought Temple of the Dog back and toured on it.  and the day he was found dead, I got the new Singles remaster box set (of sorts) in the mail.

Obviously, depression hits all hard.  Money and material success do not make happiness.  Some of the interesting details of that night – he talked to his wife after the concert.  This all happened in Detroit right after a Soundgarden concert.

He admitted he felt groggy and maybe took too many anxiety pills.  After they hung up, she knew immediately he wasn’t well.  She called his bodyguard to go check on him.  This bodyguard is a damn hero!  The bodyguard went to the lobby to get the manager to open the door to Chris’ room.  The manager walked up to the room, but explained he could not open the door for the bodyguard.  He said the person has a right to privacy and we can’t just let ourselves in.  SO… the bodyguard kicked the goddamn door in.  Hotel room doors, and we can assume this was a nice hotel, are quite strong.

No sign of Chris anywhere.  Bodyguard says ‘open the bathroom door, you have the master key’.   Manager gives same response, he will not.  Bodyguard kicks that door in, too.  That is when they found Chris dead.  It happened SO fast.

I still can’t really listen to him anymore, it upsets me that much.

Did your parents tell you their alternate name choices for you? What were you almost named?

None that I know of.  I should ask my mom that.  There doesn’t appear to be a strategy to most of our names (me and my two brothers).  Well, the oldest is a Jr of dad’s name… but I don’t know where my name or Scotty’s came from.  They aren’t family names, to my knowledge.  Just… uh… white people names:  Kevin, Scotty, and John Lang Jr.

*** we don’t call Johnny ‘junior’, though.  We call him Federal Inmate 332188695 of Canon City, Colorado.

What were some weird rules your parents had for you as a child?

None.  You trying to rabble rouse, here?  You talking shit about my mother?  That woman is a saint!  Honest, I can’t think of a single thing.  My folks are awesome and were amazing to us and raised us with unconditional love and opportunity.  There is nothing I would go back and change.  Wait, one tiny thing.  I let my dad’s girlfriend cut my hair once.  It was long, she said it would just be a ‘quick trim’, and she pretty much chopped it all.  Clearly, I am still pissed about that.  My dad was a Marine, so you can imagine he wasn’t big on my long hair look.  As for the gal, who became his wife… lets just say she is the Queen Dunk®!  I am not going to publish her name, or even speak it.  Ok, it’s Lorrie.  Don’t even remember her last name, or have any idea what it would be.

Its safe to assume she dropped our family moniker when they divorced.

*** back to Kate McKinnon. I call her the greatest SNL player, ever! NOT the greatest woman cast member… but greatest. As talented as Phil Hartman, Joe Piscopo, Eddie Murphy, Will Farrell. BUT, she is funnier than them, and her ability to do characters in incredible. She has probably done about 50. I should research that, because I take SNL super seriously. I went all the way to NYC just to see the studio.

want a taste? want to know her greatness in a single character? Watch any of the alien abductee skits. there are 3 or 4 and brilliant every time.

Friday Fives – miss manners edition

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How closely do you think good manners are related to income and social status?

It would take a sociologist to answer that properly.  However, since I was forced to take a Sociology class in college, I will say it is not related.  To quote the great Sociological mind of his time, HJ Simpson “See Bart, Elephants are just like people.  Some of them are jerks!”

Can the idea of good manners inhibit people’s natural sense of fun and inhibition?

I would argue the opposite.  Being kind and treating people with respect and equality means you will have made a connection.  You will feel more relaxed… as will they.  Its like being a safety natural disaster nut. Emergencies are the one thing I don’t worry about… because I know I am prepared.

Do people have more manners now or in earlier times?

Having not been around in times before me, I would wager people have not changed significantly in the last 100 years or more.

Do you say “hi” to people even if they are strangers? Why? Why not?

Yes and no.  To a random person passing me on the street?  No.  But to any kind of person who is serving me in any capacity (a plumber, a cashier, a waitress) I immediately greet them as a friend and build rapport.  It easy to do and you should ALWAYS do this thing:  when you encounter someone wearing a nametag, catch that name.  QUICK.  Now, as you roll up next in line at the grocery store, the clerk will say a forced pleasantry.  When you reply “Shirley, I’ll tell ya how I am… this weather is chapping my ass!  I think they are trying to kill us!  Well, maybe not you, Shirley… but they are out for me!”

You just made their day better, and made a human connection.  Now it isn’t so much a transaction as a conversation.  And it takes no longer. I know I have ranted about this before. But hey, at least we got through a single week where I didn’t rave about my bench scraper.

Do you listen to other’s people conversations on the street?

I don’t go out of my way to.  However… I certainly don’t go out of my way to not hear them.  “If it wasn’t for my horse, I wouldn’t have spent that year in college.”

*** this may be about the third time I have had content ready ahead of time. This was not supposed to go up until 11:30 pm Colorado time… as always. But, the stupid new WordPress editing interface hates me. and babies. and the smile on a child’s face.