Friday Fives – pets and relocation edition

If you could move anywhere in the world and be guaranteed a job, etc, where would you go?

Italy. Not Rome, mind you, but a little seaside village. A close second would Barcelona. Third place? Right here in Colorado.  That pic up there is the ‘Sagrada Familia’.  It is a church being built in Spain.  Look closely at the crazy architecture.  It’s like a combination of a cartoon and a hallucination.  They have been building it for about 100 years, and they expect it may be another 100 years.  Wanna work there?  You can.  It doesn’t pay, but if you show up they will teach you a trade because they (the family carrying on Gaudi’s work) needs all the help they can get.  That is the kind of society I want to live in.  Even though I am super atheist, I will gladly give my days and nights to see such a marvel come to life.

If you had a time machine, and could witness any one event without altering or disturbing it, what would you want to see?

Easy, the Kennedy assassination. Not necessarily to stop it, or even solve it. But, I have a LOT of questions that have never been answered sufficiently by the Warren Report. In fact, I wouldn’t mind a loop – Groundhog day style – of being there 30 minutes before it happens. I wanna do that 5 times. I could just be a ghost and not interfere. I wanna be behind that car, then I wanna be on the grassy knoll, then I wanna be in that room wit Oswald.

Which do you prefer: cats or dogs? Why?

Both I love very much. Obviously, a dog’s love and loyalty are extraordinary. I am still trying to be the person my dog thinks I am. However, there is something to be said for the independence of a cat.

I just envy their life. They serve no master but themselves. They live in the moment, and still seem to have a sense of wonder about life that the rest of us (dogs included) lose over time.

How many animals do you have?

Gosh, a lot. 2 horses, 2 dogs, 2 cats, and some fish.  I wish I could have more.  However, it is already just about impossible to leave town on vacation.

Does this dress make me look fat?

God no, you look great! Wait, what the hell are you talking about?  We were talking about traveling, and love of animals… and then this?  You are a mess!

Friday Fives

1. If you could suddenly speak one language fluently (that you don’t currently speak) what would it be?

       Italian.  It’s beautiful, like Spanish and French.  Really, they are all the same.  Look at the word roots, they are almost identical.  There are just pronunciation differences.  They are called ‘indoEuropean’ and/or ‘Romance languages.  Here is the deal, just learn one.  with one, you can pick up on the others.  Like… I speak Spanish.  So, we were Italy last year.  While I didn’t necessarily understand people speaking fast to me… I could totally get the gist of a menu and signs.

2. If you were to suggest a foreign film, that you really enjoyed, what one would you suggest?

one of my favorite films is ‘Like Water for Chocolate’.  It’s in Spanish (Como Agua para Chocolate).  It is the stirring and awesome and perfect love story.  Tita teaches us food tastes different when it is made with love.  See it.  That is an order.  It has English subtitles.  The subtitle thing seems annoying at first… but you don’t even notice it after a bit.  it’s like those old letter box movies.

I should add that I have no second or third place here.  Generally, I don’t much like foreign movies.  I don’t want to work to see a movie.  I don’t want to read, or get subtext… I just want to be entertained.  This film is a grand exception, though.  Honestly, buy a bottle of wine and watch it.

3. If you had to call another country home (other than the one you currently live in) what one would you choose?

Italy.  I have been a bunch of places around the world, but Italy was the best.  Why?  Well, everything in Italy was made in Italy.  So, they created a sustainable culture.  The plates, the clothes, the jewelry, silverware… everything I found there was made in Italy.  Look at EVERYTHING you own.  Everything you can see, it is made in China or somewhere in Asia.

Also, they love coffee more there than even I do.  Every third business was a ‘Bar’.  But, bar means coffee bar… not booze.  The wine is plentiful and cheap…  and also local.  In closing, the food.  The food was wicked good, and also very reasonably priced.  Here is something interesting about the food there.  At ZERO restaurants did we find salt or pepper at the table.  There was no condiments anywhere, ever.  Why?  Because their food was really good, and they knew it.  So, they won’t let you fuck with it. I dig that. slobs, they had pride in how they looked.  Plus, like everyone on earth… they feel their government is totally fucking them over at all times.

I just dug the culture.  People seemed nice, and happy.  and they dressed well.  People didn’t go out looking like fat slobs.  They looked good, and dressed up.  I like to see that kind of pride and style.  We could use that.

4. If you went out to buy an import music CD, what one would you buy?

In England, they are obsessed with ‘B’ sides.  Extra recordings that never get put on the full album release.  See, let’s say there is a single of  “rolling in the deep” and you want to sell a ton of singles.  What can you put on the other side?  you can’t put “someone like you” on the other side.  Why?  Because you could get that from buying the CD/Cassette/Album.  They want to sell you the single AND the CD.  How?  Because if you bought the single, you would get a ‘B’ side single that is otherwise unreleased.  So, catalogue releases are more thorough in England.

5. If you were to chose an ethnic dinner, what would it be?

mexican?  I don’t think i understand, or like, the question.   but, I want to go to bed, so I will not over think it.

Friday Fives

Good morning team.  Last week’s Fives was half hearted.  I was writing from Rome.  Very tired, and likely a bit liquored up.  House wine costs about the same as water, so you can guess which one I chose.


1. What exciting things are you doing this weekend?

well, I think I am having a birthday something or other Saturday night.  Also, hopefully meeting up with the terrific Chris Michas of Michas Guitars and get started on my custom guitar.  Also, will do a few hours of work at the dog shelter and maybe knock out the first disc of the madmen series on DVD.

Update – this happened.  Got the guitar, and it is stunning.  Take a look.


2. Share with us some travel wisdom

This is from the great Rick Steves, who is a European travel guru… ours at least.  “Be flexible. When traveling, if you find things are not to your expectations, change your expectations.”  The whole experience of traveling, the highs and lows are all beautifully summed up by that one sentence.  Rick Steves is the bomb!  We used to be Lonely Planet devotees.  In fact, I contributed to a few of their Mexico books.  However, Rick is our new guy.  Free podcast audio tours, the works!

3. Ever gone to Spring Training?

No, because I don’t care about baseball.  However, I have done the football equivalent:  training camp.  When I was a kid, my uncle would take us to the Bills training camp in Fredonia, NY.  In AZ, the Cardinals would practice at NAU, where I was going to school.  So, I would watch them.  When I moved here (to Denver), I go see the Broncos every summer when I can.  Now that they have moved camp to their HQ, they are only 3 miles away!

4. Where is the most exotic place you have traveled?

That would be a toss up between Barcelona, Spain… and Rome, Italy.  Italy was amazing, and it is everything you imagine it… but better and grander and older.  However, Barcelona was covered in architecture by this dude Gaudi.  He is AMAZING.  Ever felt passionate about building?  Check this stuff out.  He is worth traveling the world to see his work.  Imagine, quite seriously, if Salvador Dali were an architect instead of a painter.  That is what you have here.  Oh, and Dali was Spanish too.

Bonus, after spending a week at Rome, I am churched out.  Jesus, they have a church there every 20 feet.  There churches have churches.  We did the Vatican and all that.  However, this is the greatest church on Earth.  It was designed by Gaudi, and is still under construction.  It’s called the Sagrada Familia. It looks photoshopped from a Scooby Doo cartoon.  No sir, this shit is real!

5. Where is your most recent travel destination?

are you even paying attention?  Just got back from Rome.  It was amazing.  So beautiful.  So simple.  and the food changed my life.  I have never had such sumptuous food and really good cheap wine in my life.  We ate like kings, and dirt cheap, too.  Some pics are here.  By the way, in case there is any question in your mind, after spending a week in Rome, the Catholic Church is the biggest for profit racket in history.  At the Vatican, I was in some of the holiest places on Earth… and they were pushing crap everywhere.  It was also the most expensive thing we did.  They are nuts, and none of this has to do with Jesus’ message.  It’s big business, plain and simple.  If I am going to shell out money for crap, let’s just go hog wild and follow Xenu.