Ner (djner) wrote,

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the blast furnace travels onward devouring 96 pieces of cake

Deal with the screwy subject and read on, this entry is classic. It actually relates to the topic matter contained in this novella.

I just got in from going out and its downright hot. I don't have any idea how I actually dealt with living here for so long, most of my life. I guess I just got used to a blast furnace and that was that.

I wonder what temperature it is right now in centigrade. I would have to get a calculator out to figure it out but I know in Fahrenheit, it's about 111, maybe about 50 C or thereabouts, who knows, I just calculated it and it's47.4 now. I am sure that Fiona was happy that she didn't have to get out in it, though I'm sure she wanted to "get out" I'm also sure she wouldn't appreciate her feet melting to the pavement as I'm sure they would have done upon walking onto the hot asphalt. Not only was it hot, but there was a tinge of humidity hanging in the air as we went out and about, and there was also a hot wind blowing up over the desert, not carrying the hope of much needed rain with it.

Last night's performance of Stomp was absolutely amazing. It's a dance group that uses normal objects, very normal and junky in some respects, and amazing that they could do so much with so little. They danced with such things as mops, brooms, and buckets, and while dancing, made different percussion noises with these things. Though they had lots of pantomiming and comedy that I would miss without description, the whole show was centered arond percussion and the fact that each bucket, each gas can, each broom sounds just a bit different. You never would think that 12 brooms can make so much noise, but some of the sounds that the Stompers made were absolutely amazing. Things that I will remember forever were the part where several people had Zippo lighters and opened and closed them rhythmically. You could hear the little clinking of the opening and shutting and, since the lighters still had fluid in them, could see the flashes as they came on and off (this is because the stage lights were off). There was also lots of junk hanging haphazardly on the walls. We just thought this was part of the decor, not so. The performers put on climbing harnesses after using the lighters and hung from ropes off the wall. While swinging across the wall on these ropes, they hit the various pieces of junk and made beautiful music. I can only imagine how it looked. If you haven't seen it, do it as soon as you can or when it appears in your town. It was well worth the $45 that it cost to go, very much well worth it.

I stayed in Grandma's house which is close to my Aunt Carol's. Fiona seemed to enjoy it, and Grandma was very happy to have me. I slept well although Fiona didn't want to sleep on the bed with me, and so I got up at about 7:30, later than I usually have been doing here. I had three cups of tea this morning, somewhat of a record for me as of late, and me and Grandma had a great time reminiscing about Australia, and as I knew would happen I've been having fleeting feelings about how I'd really like to go back to Australia some time either to visit or to stay. Its the lifestyle, its my heritage, it's amazing.

My mom and Aunt called, and I decided rather then staying at my Grandma's and getting sadder that Wasn’t in Australia, that I'd make the mad shopping trip of the century and pick up some stuff for tomorrow's party. We went to several stores, and spent a lot of money on various as sundries including baby Quiche, shrimp, lots of fruit, and other things which I can't remember. We even went before we went to pick up the cake to Starbucks where we picked up a kick ass travel coffee cup which I've wanted for a while. Since they don't have Starbucks in Little Rock or at least close to where I live, we had to make the Starbucks run like we make the Mexican food supplies Run in Arizona.

Here's the classic part of the story. We went to Sam's Club to pick up the cake for my Grandma's party. It's an awesome cake, I hope to post a picture of it tomorrow. It has all kinds of flowers on it plus its a picture cake, a cake with the picture that was on her invitation frosted on it. Carol and Faye ordered it thinking that they'd feed 48 people with a full sheet cake. They thought that a half sheet would be hardly enough to feed the 35 or so people that are supposed to show up tomorrow. After counting the pieces of the cake in the display window, they ordered the cake "we may have a bit left over but we'll just throw some of it away", and we then came along today to pick it up. What they did not realize was written on the sign above the cakes. What they had ordered was in fact a full sheet cake, but what was displayed and what they counted as 48 pieces was a half sheet cake. Consequently, our cake will feed 96 people rather than the 48 people that we hoped to feed. So whoever wants to come over to my Grandma's party, come on, we have lots and lots and lots of cake to share / feed to the dogs / feed to the cats / give to the homeless shelter :). I sincerely doubt that Carol will stop reading signs again, but we'll see just how big of a surplus we have. I did figure out that we'll have about 4 square feet of cake, too much let me tell you.

We're currently waiting for Dianne, another Aunt, and her boyfriend Bill to come. My Grandma's made this really good Mexican casserole and we'll be hanging and having a great time with the rest of the fam. Carol's having too much fun with her memory scrap book and is using all kinds of freaky scissors to cut out pictures and paste them into a collage.

Well, so ends the longest entry I think I've ever written, coherent or not I hope its informative and easily readable. I am not sure if I have ever written such a large entry but I hope you read it, its worth it if you haven't, I think. I'll write about my Grandma's party tomorrow, as I'm sure it will be memorable as always these family things are. More Later, and stay cool for gods sake.

I'm putting this here just for entertainment purposes. It's always memorable too and I like it :P.


SINCE 1981, Philadelphia has been the nation's fifth-largest city.

But as of tomorrow, the City of Brotherly Love may be nudged from the Top 5 by, of all places, Phoenix.

That is, of course, if you consider Phoenix an actual, you know, city.

Phoenix is more of a loose accumulation of crummy vinyl-sided houses occupied by sun-burned retirees who happen to share a ZIP code. It is a bland spread
of chemical-fertilized lawn in the middle of the desert, criss-crossed by smog-filled freeways and chilled with central air.

It doesn't make anything but overpriced hardware for the Pentagon. It has no local traditions, except the ones it stole from Native Americans before chasing
them to the reservation. Its most distinguished leader, Barry Goldwater, was the loser in the nation's biggest presidential landslide.

Phoenix a city? The place is 475 square miles, more than three times the size of Philadelphia. If we used those geographic standards, Milton Street would
be getting city contracts in Downingtown.

A city? The burg wasn't even a part of the United States till 1912. We've got parking meters older'n that.

A city? The tallest building is 40 floors, about 150 feet shorter than City Hall.

A city? The only professional sports team that ever won a championship won't even use the city's name, instead preferring to call itself the Arizona Diamondbacks.

A city? Ha!

National rankings

• No. 1 in high school dropouts.

• No. 1 in bark beetle infestation.

• No. 1 in stolen cars.

• No. 1 in unsolved rapes.

• No. 1 in delayed airline flights.

• No. 1 in no-shows at NFL games.

• No. 1 in percentage of kids without health insurance.

• No. 3 in teenage mothers.

Phoenix Hall of Fame

1. Bishop Thomas J. O'Brien, beloved leader of city's Roman Catholics. Though he confessed to covering up countless allegations of sexual abuse by his priests,
it took a fatal hit-and-run to finally drive him from office.

2. Fife Symington, rich-guy governor elected twice by clueless voters despite history of suspicious financial schemes. It took a federal conviction on fraud
charges to finally drive him from office.

3. Charles Keating Jr., holier-than-thou civic booster. While preaching anti-smut sermons and promoting Phoenix as America's next great city, Keating's
fraud led to the collapse of his bank, sparking the S&L scandal of the 1980s and costing taxpayers $3.4 billion.

4. Beau Duran, popular talk-show host. Showing off typical Phoenix courtesy, Duran called the grieving widow of St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Darryl Kile
and asked her if she had a date for a playoff game against the D'backs.

5. Valinda Jo Elliott, trailblazer. Lost in the woods, she set a fire to signal a television news helicopter for help. The wildfire scorched nearly half
a million acres and cost $43 million to extinguish.

Valley of the SUV

• No. 1 in red-light running.

• No. 3 in aggressive driving.

• No. 3 in traffic fatalities.

• No. 3 in pedestrian deaths.

• No. 15 in ozone pollution.

Civic boosters

Ten years ago, Phoenix was named by some consulting agency as the "Best Run City in the World."

How'd it celebrate?

First, it erected signs smugly patting itself on the back.

Then, it bought a new stadium for D'backs owner Jerry Colangelo by enacting a sales tax without a public vote.

Average summertime high
107 degrees.

Zoned out

"I love California, I practically grew up in Phoenix."

- Dan Quayle,

former vice president

"I'm so excited over your rodeo. How do you say that, 'rodeo' or 'rodayo?' "

- Marilyn Monroe,

during her one visit to Phoenix, in 1956.

"To insist on strength is not war-mongering. It is peace-mongering."

- Barry Goldwater,

former U.S. senator from Arizona

Home of mediocrity

• Lynda Carter

• Wayne Newton

• David Spade

• Mare Winningham

• Stevie Nicks


Travel & Leisure magazine declared that Phoenix has the "worst cultural attractions" in America.

21st century yokels

• Phoenix does not believe in daylight-saving time.

• Phoenix is the world's largest city without Sunday bus service.

• In 1990, voters turned down a referendum to make Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday a state holiday.

• Favorite local restaurant: Applebee's.

• The city's hottest bar features live bull riding.


These guys abandoned Philly for Phoenix.

• Ex-Sixer Charles Barkley

• Ex-Eagle Buddy Ryan

• Ex-Phillie Curt Schilling

• Slugger Reggie Jackson

• Cartoonist Bil Keane

Phoenix Suns starting five

• Jason Kidd, 2001. Arrested for domestic abuse, struck wife in face in front of 2-year-old son.

• Stephon Marbury, 2002. Arrested for DUI, blew .180 percent blood alcohol.

• Penny Hardaway, 2000. Arrested for threatening girlfriend with a gun.

• Cliff Robinson, 2001. Arrested for DUI, blew .146 percent blood alcohol.

• Cedric Ceballos, 1994. On the night his team was knocked out of the NBA playoffs, he and Charles Barkley allegedly hosted a sex party where center Oliver
Miller, aka Pig, was accused of assaulting a woman. No arrests.

This is the end of the article. I don't agree with it all but I do think that just the size of Phoenix should not make it great or a place to live. I find it sickening, opressive, and depressing that the city that I grew up in is so huge.

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