Tuesday, February 28, 2006

"You may all go to hell. I will go to Texas."- Davy Crockett

The DOA management is sorry to report that due to events of an extremely personal nature, Rob has been unable to report on many of the events of the past few weeks without divulging several things that are forbidden subjects on this blog. As many of you know it is Mardi Gras in New Orleans, and when last we saw our hero, he was in a corner either weeping like a schoolgirl or vomiting uncontrolably. Still unsure which, but he was certainly not coming out of his safe little happy corner to do his blog entries. We therfore present instead, a pleasant narrative about the Webkahunah's friend, Dizzy, as told to us by some dude with a sombrero.

Dizzy's San Antonio Adventure- part 1.

It began as a day like any other for our heroine... the sun was shining, the birds were chirping, and the world was assured to safely continue spinning on it's axis for at least a few more hours. Mardi Gras was a scant five days away, and being in New Orleans for Mardi Gras was certainly worth a road trip... Or so thought Dizzy's Sidekick, "Phred" the boy wonder. And so, when Phred showed up on Dizzy's doorstep, she was packed and ready to go.

Now it should be noted for our readers that Dizzy lives in Avondale, only a twenty minute drive from New Orleans. What strange goings on is this, you may ask? Why is she packed for a ride across town? to preserve the suspense, we shall leave these questions unanswered for the monent. aw, hell... it's told to you in a few sentences anyway. Why are you still reading this? the adventure continues in the next paragraph!

Dizzy hopped into Phred's car all a-twitter in anticipation of the adventures ahead. Not a good thing, because Dizzy is...well... Dizzy. The open road whispered to them, beckoning not east, towards the bright lights of the big easy, but west... toward the cool southern Texas plains. Dizzy and Phred had decided a few days prior to get out of town this Mardi Gras you see, and San Antonio was somewhere that neither Phred nor Dizzy had ever thoroughly explored. As the car cruised through the storm battered communities of the gulf coast and made its way onto the glorious unscathed communities near houston, Both Dizzy and Phred realized that taking advantage of the long weekend to get out of New Orleans was probaly the best decision that they could have made. Though it rained, and made the driving difficult for poor Phred, they perservered until the pair finally alighted in San Antonio, at a Microtel downtown next to a haunted factory.

Both were extrmely Hungry from the long journey, and in need of some serious information about their surroundings. They went to the lobby and consulted with Issac, the Hotel's concierge that was named after that guy on the "Love Boat", but was like him only in that he was asian.

"I like Buffets" Dizzy said to Issac, "Are there any nearby?"

Issac thought for a moment. "There's a Steak buffet about ten minutes from here."

The glee on Dizzy's face was evident. Never before had it occured to her that the words "Steak" and "Buffet" could be placed together like that.

It was going to be a fun weekend indeed.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

The DOA wordcloud...



Came across this neat little image generator while browsing blogs. it'a called a wordcloud, and it generates the image based on the writing style of the blogger.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

The Power of the cartoon....

Anyone who still feels that Cartoons can’t change the world obviously hasn’t been paying attention the past few days. The recent rioting and accompanied protests about the Cartoons of the prophet Mohammed in that Danish newspaper have been pretty serious. Last time I checked, ten people had been killed.

Over a cartoon.

As a cartoonist, this worries me. I have often thought of myself as one of the first guys against the wall with a blindfold and a cigarette when the revolution comes, but I doubt most cartoonists do. I can’t help thinking of the Mocca festival Java Foo Foo and I went to the last trip we took to NYC. How many of those guys are crapping on themselves now or worse, gloating about the power of their pens?

One thing that really surprises me though, is that I actually kinda understand how the Muslims feel on this one. I don’t go into my faith much on these pages, because it’s something I’m not entirely clear on. Lately, I feel like God has dumped enough signs in my lap to confirm his existence, but I don’t feel I’ve found the right religious sect for me. I consider myself to be a Christian more often than not I guess; I believe in most of the basic tenets ascribed to the Christian faith to the point that I try to live my life by them, and over all I think that I’m a fairly good Christian.

So, anyway… about two years ago, I was also really offended by a cartoon. It was an episode of South Park where Jesus was going into Afghanistan to save Santa Claus after his sled was shot down on Christmas eve. Now, up until the offensive part, this actually struck me as pretty funny. But then, upon landing on the compound roof where Santa was held, Jesus whips out a bowie knife and guts two Afghan guards.

To say I was offended was putting it lightly. I stared at the TV aghast for at least ten minutes before finally turning the show off. It helped that the episode in question had only ten minutes left, I suppose... but I swear, I could not tell you even with my photographic memory what was contained in the rest of the program. To think that the christian embodiment of peace and god's love would WHIP OUT A BOWIE KNIFE AND GUT SOMEONE was offensive to me on so many levels that I actually stopped watching the show from that point on.

Still, I didn't go out and start a riot. None of my business that there's a special place in hell reserved for Trey Parker and Matt Stone... particularly after making Satan out to be a big pansy. Don't think he's gonna be real amused. Maybe they worked out some kinda deal with the guy... it would explain the startling success of South Park compared to Baseketball and Team America.

But I digress.

As Christians, we are continually bombarded with people mocking our faith. Generally, we tend to have a sense of humor about it. Same thing holds true for the Jews and Buddhists. Well, less so for the Buddhists, because who could mock such a jolly deity? But still, isn't one of the five pillars of Islam love or peace or something like it? and if so, exactly how do these riots figure into it? Part of Love is tolerance... part of Peace is respect for your fellow man. Lighten up and be excellent to one another, people.

Pretty deep for a Tuesday, I know. But until I can actually teach the world to sing in perfect harmony and buy it a coke, it will have to do.

Monday, February 20, 2006

My number? 328-7448.

I read this and it made me think of Drew, who I know has serious issues with the subject. Given the slow eroding of our personal freedoms in this country, I may just start refusing to give my phone number to sales clerks, just to see what their reaction is.

The revolution may not be televised, but it will be blogged. It's all about passive resistance, people.

Oh, and to anyone who actually has the number above, I apologize. You have my sympathy for what it spells out.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Welcome to the 21st century

Today, I forgot my cell phone at home. You know how it is when you are in a hurry to get to work… there’s always something you forget, be it feeding your pet groundhog, turning off the air conditioning, or pants. Well, I thought I would never feel more naked than that time with the pants, but apparently I was wrong.

I was one of the last people I know to buckle under and buy a cellular phone, and even then I did so because the necessities of the Paranormal Research job demanded it. You know, in case someone hurt themselves running from their own shadow or something, I needed to be able to call all my friends and tell them how funny it was.

Joking. Paranormal Research is serious business.

Anyway, I needed to be able to call for help if something serious happened to one of the participants on my team. I got the cell phone under protest. I had been saying for years that I would never have one of the silly things on my hip because “there are times I don’t want anyone to be able to contact me”. But like I said, I had to get one for the job. I grumbled. I griped. I allowed myself to be dragged kicking and screaming into the brave new millennium.

Now, I feel naked without it. That’s progress for ya. I sit here wanting to call (in order) Dizzy, Stacey, My Dad, My ex-wife, Ringo, Ronnie, my aunt Joann, and of course, Jennifer Aniston. (She goes without saying I suppose. Still owes me five bucks for services rendered.) But I can’t, primarily because my cell has also become my pocket phone list, and I can’t make any long distance calls from here anyway.

I realized I don’t actually dial anymore, or else I would have most of these numbers committed to memory. I just hit the proper speed dial, or look it up in the phone’s list of magic numbers. I have been making fun of Stacey for YEARS for relying on technology for keeping her phone lists, when a piece of paper and a pen work just as well, and don’t run low on batteries. Yet here I sit, equally dependant on that magic little bundle of circuit boards and transistors. It scares me that this little gadget has become so indispensable in my life.

Sometimes I long for the simpler time I grew up in, when you still really “dialed” a phone, and the best source of information about the world outside your window was the ten year old encyclopedia.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

And the job of directing "Dogs of Atlantis: the Rob Cerio story" goes to:

Woody Allen
Your film will be 59% romantic, 39% comedy, 34% complex plot, and a $ 32 million budget.

Be prepared to have your life story shot entirely in New York City -- though lately Woody's been loving shooting in London. Also, your music soundtrack is all jazz from before 1949. Filmography: Annie Hall, Manhattan, Stardust Memories, Everyone Says I Love You, etc. Woody has released one film per year consistently for the past 35 years. For the past 15 years he's been trying to make films like his older, funnier ones, just like characters in his Stardust Memories film suggest throughout. Regardless of his personal life, his films are American classics.

My test tracked 4 variables How you compared to other people your age and gender:

You scored higher than 73% on action-romance

>You scored higher than 76% on humor

>You scored higher than 24% on complexity


You scored higher than 26% on budget

Link: The Director Who Films Your Life Test written by bingomosquito on OkCupid Free Online Dating, home of the 32-Type Dating Test

And here I was hoping for Kevin Smith.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Ahhh... the beauty of a hallmark holiday...

Been working the overnight shift, 11pm-7am... It has my inner clock set on "tango".

If that seems a little random, try getting up at 2:30am and writing something... I doubt you would do any better. On the bright side, only one week to go before the freight train of life switches tracks again. I have decided that the whole hotel thing just isn't working out, so I'm going to work at a local Auto store.

But more about that when I actually start the job.

I went to Walgreens before coming to work today with the intent of picking out a Valentines gift for a special someone. It never occured to me before stepping through the door that this was one of those shopping situations that men should just avoid.

I know of a few others, mind you... The Mall on Christmas Eve, The supermarket the night before Thanksgiving, A pizza place on super bowl sunday, the local Hallmark store the day before mother's day. There are others, but I think you get the point. These are occasions of pure, unbridled consumerism at it's worst. Little old ladies fighting grown men for the last "world's best teacher" figurine... Two linebacker types brawling over the last "molly wets her pants" doll... six or seven soccer moms screaming at each other over the last box of "Stove top stuffing". These scenes may now officially include the local Drugstore at 10pm Feburary 13th.

I walked into the store and it was absolute red and pink chaos. Anything with a heart on it was fair game, and god help you if you wanted a rose of any kind. There were mylar balloons everywhere, held by men with contorted experssions that conveyed every bit of dissapointment that their signifigant others would heap upon them the next day if all they only showed up with this stupid balloon. There were empty cases of chocolate hearts strewn all over the seasonals aisle. There were soccer moms frantic on cell phones trying to figure out if "finding Nemo" valentines were still cool at their kids school.

Like I said... pink and red chaos.

I braved the storm and shoved my way into what was left of the beautiful valentines day display aisle that had been there just a day before... now only shredded cardboard and mylar wrapping. I had intended on getting this special someone a chocolate rose, but there were no roses anywhere, much less the chocolate variety. I gazed around, knowing that she would neither know of this nor probably care, (this was a bit of an afterthought, after all) but I still felt like the Dad who got mugged on christmas eve outside toys R us.

Then I saw it. On the top shelf of the aisle, pushed all the way to the back was an intact case of Whitman's heart-shaped samplers.

Being 6'2" has it's advantages. No one else around me had seen them yet. I stood on my toes, hooked my arm over the edge, and pulled a box down with satisfaction. I walked away, feeling like I had just dropped a litre of blood into a pool filled with hungry sharks. The others around me pounced on the rest of the case, and I think I was lucky to leave with my fingers intact.

Sure... she reads my blog, and i've just ruined the surprise... but to me, Valentines day is a silly invention anyway. Real romantics don't need a special day to show the people that matter to them how they feel after all; those that are romance-challenged tend to forget about it anyway.

Me... I'm somewhere in the middle. The main reason I participate in this holiday at all is to let that special someone know that they are indeed a special someone to me. I think that's something we all need to hear once in a while.

Monday, February 13, 2006

CHEVRON 7 LOCKED!

I cannot tell you how happy this result made me. Stargate SG1 is one of my all time favorite shows. I may have to base a bit of fanfic upon this.

You scored as SG-1 (Stargate). You are versatile and diverse in your thinking. You have an open mind to that which seems highly unlikely and accept it with a bit of humor. Now if only aliens would stop trying to take over your body.

FBI's X-Files Division (The X-Files)

94%

Serenity (Firefly)

94%

SG-1 (Stargate)

94%

Moya (Farscape)

88%

Babylon 5 (Babylon 5)

88%

Enterprise D (Star Trek)

75%

Andromeda Ascendant (Andromeda)

75%

Bebop (Cowboy Bebop)

75%

Millennium Falcon (Star Wars)

50%

Galactica (Battlestar: Galactica)

50%

Deep Space Nine (Star Trek)

44%

Nebuchadnezzar (The Matrix)

38%

Your Ultimate Sci-Fi Profile II: which sci-fi crew would you best fit in? (pics)
created with QuizFarm.com


Culled from Drew's Blog. Oddly enough, the tiebreaker response was "To hell with the future! let's explore other worlds NOW!" Otherwise, I probably would have wound up on Serenity with Drew. I am such a geek sometimes. My prediction as to how my remaining friends will score on this:

Java Foo Foo will find herself on Serenity with Drew.
Ringo will be on the Bebop.
Dizzy will wind up on the Seaquest. (probably feeding the dolphin. Oh, wait... not an option? then she'll be on Moya)
Dave will serve aboard the Enterprise D. (only because the 1701-A isn't one of the options)
Stacey will turn up on SG1 with me. (Just follow my lead and don't trust the guys with the glowing eyes, toots.)
Melinda will be a war correspondant on Deep Space Nine.
Ducky will find himself on the Nebuchadnezzar.
Ronnie, of course will wind up on Boston Legal as William Shatner's law partner.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

The Duality of the blogger...

I was having a conversation with a friend the other day when she pointed out to me that sometimes it seems to her that these pages are written by a different person than the one she knows. “This is true.” I said, not really thinking too hard about it… I have enough to think about to give me headaches for weeks after all. “There is Rob, and there is the Webkahunah.”

“Well, isn’t that a little odd, Rob?” She said, (mind you I’m paraphrasing here) “The Webkahunah sounds like a totally different person than the one I see from time to time.”

I should have just agreed and moved on at this point, but being the glutton for punishment I am, I said “How so?”

“Well, the Kahunah is confident, funny and charming.” She said, “And he’s never the sensitive, caring type. He says some things I could never imagine you saying.”

“Well, it’s easy to be confident, funny and charming when you have an hour to write a few paragraphs.” I said, my ego totally not bruised by this, “I liken it to Clark Kent and Superman. There is Superman, and there is Clark. The real man that is Clark Kent is actually somewhere in the middle… both personas, yet neither. Unique for being both.”

“Rob, I hate to break this to you, but Superman is a fictional character. He’s not real.”

The conversation broke down a bit after that… (I do take the whole Superman thing a wee bit seriously) But an important point was made to me… Is the Kahunah a fa├žade that I put up as a defense mechanism? Maybe… but fortunately, he’s apparently a funny charming defense mechanism, and I think retreating behind him is a lot healthier than some of the defense mechanisms I could have.

I like to think that the “real” Rob writes these pages, but I know that there are times that the Webkahunah persona takes over, and these are generally the funnier entries. It’s a lot like the Comedian taking the stage. I don’t write all that much about things that are really happening in my life, (I mean the deep, psychological stuff that makes us who we are) because these events don’t make for good reading most of the time (welcome to dullsville. population: you).

Would you really care about Andrew Clay’s take on life? Of course not… but back in the eighties, people paid good money to hear the Diceman go on about how women suck. Robert Goldwait probably has a few ferns and a cat named mittens… But the Bobcat is raunchy and funny enough to make you juggle kittens.

There are exceptions in these pages (Times when it’s nothing but Rob). Y’all have heard quite a bit about my ex-wife, my divorce, my ex-mother in law and how hurricane Katrina affected me… but y’all hear the Webkahunah’s opinion a lot more often. I have to admit, I kinda like my “alter ego”. He’s a great guy, if a little crude when it comes to the ladies. I’m kinda proud that he’s rattling around in the infinite morass that is my brain, and I enjoy his approach to the myriad events of my life. I am him… he is me… and we’re both equal parts Hero, Rebel, Lover, Fighter, Comic, Mechanic, Salesman, Scientist, Handyman, Boy Scout, Geek, and just a smidge of goofball.

Does this make me nuts? Nope. It makes me normal.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

More about the love life... You wish!

As many of you know, I avoid posts about my love life in these pages. There are a number of bullshit reasons I give for this… “a gentleman never tells”, “my mom reads my blog”, “gotta keep the PG rating”, etc.

As I say, all absolute bullshit. The real reason that I don’t post anything about relationships in my blog is because women confuse the hell out of me. I know, nothing new that the war between the sexes is misunderstood by both sides, but hear me out. Women REALLY confuse me. And I’m not talking the “lost in a crowded shopping mall near the orange Julius” kinda confusion. I’m talking the “lost in outer Mongolia after taking the right turn at Albuquerque, New Mexico” kinda confusion.

That, and all the women I know read my blog.

For example: Let’s say “Bob” starts dating “Cindy”. He posts it on his “bobspot.com”, cause he’s happy he’s dating “Cindy”. Little does “Bob” know that his sharing of said happiness sets in motion a chain of events. “Bob’s” psycho ex-wife, “Faith” is reading it and plotting ways to kill his pet groundhog, “Ted”. “Bob’s” close friend, “Margie” reads it and starts getting inexplicably jealous. “Cindy” reads it, and is pissed at poor “Bob” for letting the world know that they even know each other, much less are involved. “Trixie” calls “Bob” to chew him out a bit for not telling her before putting it on the blog, “Linda” calls and asks if “Cindy” has a sister. “Bob’s” mother calls and asks why hasn’t she gotten to meet this “Cindy”, even though she lives 1500 frickin miles away. “Louise” reads it and doesn’t let “Bob” ask her out because he is “taken”. In the chat rooms, women stop flirting with “Bob”, and word spreads like wildfire across the globe to women of all races and nationalities that “Bob” is now taken.

Meanwhile, the torrid affair between “Bob” and “Cindy” lasted all of three days, and “Ted” died suspiciously after failing to see his shadow, or the cross town bus right behind it.

Now, dear reader… where does this leave “Bob”? Lonely, and with no way to safely dispose of a rotting groundhog carcass. He considers a pet cemetery, but remembers what happened in the movies, and the last thing he figures he needs is a Zombie groundhog.

The above story is pure fiction of course, (I have no Zombie groundhog, I assure you) but it illustrates my point. Blogging is not without its risks… dating a blogger doubly so. I liken it to being friends with a comedian. Sooner or later, you’re gonna do something stupid, and it’s gonna wind up in his night club act. Now, if the Comic is sensitive about this, he winds up telling jokes about airline food and the price of gas, and never mentions his relationships at all.

Guess I’m just that kinda Comic.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Robbie Gras Report take 2... Superbowl sunday

The DOA management apologizes for the excessive length of today’s entry. A hint for anyone in the market for an Electro Convulsive Therapy machine… make sure it has a “stun” setting, and don’t mix it with someone taking Alka-Seltzer or Pepto Bismol. Still, it’s fairly funny, and we hope you will enjoy it.

Okay, so yesterday I was in a less than spectacular mood despite the efforts of Dizzy to make sure I had a happy birthday. Today, while I’m still not at 100 percent, I am at at least 89 or so, so that should be enough to write a much better account of my birthday than I did last night.

To start with, I’ve been sick. Not just your typical, run-of-the-mill, under-the-weather type sickness either… I’m talking the why-is-my-body-making-these-horrible-sounds, don’t-stray-too-far-from-the-bathroom, did-I-do-something-to-offend-God kinda sickness.

In short, for all my maudlin crapola, the “state of the Rob” was sick.

Not to say that there aren’t a few nuggets of truth in there… I am in need of a change. The job has me a little down, (if one more guest compares me having no vacancies in our hotel for them to there being no room at the inn for Mary and Joseph, I swear I’m gonna belt em!). Also, I’m hearing the passionate whisper of the open road in my ear again. It happens from time to time to those of us with the heart of an explorer… I guess you just get used to ignoring it after a while. Still haven’t decided exactly what it is I need to change, but y’all will be the first to know when I do.

Anyway… throughout history many great people have made many great mistakes. Captain Smith sped up in iceberg filled waters… Napoleon had a hankering for borcht… Mama Cass needed that second ham sandwich… And of course, I still went out on Robbie Gras Eve like I had planned to, despite the fact that my stomach was doing a more than fair impression of the rhythm section of a samba band. So I didn’t drink a lot. Did try to. (everyone see mistake number two here?) I was bummed. Nobody but Dizzy showed up.

Now, an aside… I know things happen. Many of my friends are still scattered about the countryside, and those that aren’t probably had very good reasons for not being there. Hurricanes suck, as it has been pointed out, and lives aren’t back to normal and won’t be for a very long time at the rate it’s going.

So there I sat in the bar, my gastrointestinal tract sounding like Custer getting reamed by the Indians at little Big Horn, making small talk with Dizzy about this woman on the end of the bar who looked like she was about to fall off her barstool.

If she had… and I’m sure she eventually did… well, it would have made for a much funnier blog, but I didn’t have the intestinal fortitude to see it through. Dizzy and I went back to my place and watched TV. Dizzy did invite me over to her place for a barbeque and super bowl thing the next day, and so I said yes.

The super bowl, for those of you not from America, is the championship game for American football, which essentially involves large men in polyurethane armor throwing around an inflated pigskin and running into each other like drunk goats with commercials shown every five minutes or so.

Americans take this VERY seriously. We plan parties around it, even if we have no love for the teams involved, the commercials shown, or the poor dead inflated pig. It’s a big deal, right up there with American independence day, and even if you don’t care about the sport, the players, the pig, or even the color scheme of the uniforms you MUST pick a side to root for. To not do so would be grounds for torture, or worse, being forced to read bad poetry.

So I picked a side. Dizzy’s Brother picked the other one, exclaiming “even though they’re flurshuginer YANKEES!” (Now, of course he didn’t actually say ‘flurshuginer’ but what he did say would make a sailor blush… well, a sailor that had been sailing around with a bunch of nuns, at any rate.) Now the funny part of this is that Dizzy’s Mom, standing next to him descreetly points out to the Brother that I am a “flushuginer Yankee”, and by discreetly I mean with broad pointing gestures and bulging eyes while elbowing him. At halftime, Dizzy’s mom also did the most amazing air guitar solo I have ever seen a 75 year old do to the Rolling Stones “satisfaction”. Apparently, the old gal has a thing for Mick Jagger...

I hope I still have women lusting for me after the next 36 trips around the sun.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Robbie Gras 2006- the annual state of the Rob address

Warning: The DOA management feels obligated to point out to our regular readers that Rob isn't feeling quite himself today, and that the following post has a much darker tone than we normally encourage here on Dogs of Atlantis. We sent away for an electroschock machine last week, but the post office isn't delivering our mail properly yet since hurricane Katrina, and our experiment to simulate the effect with the car battery and jumper cables merely resulted in explosive diarreah. We tried, folks.

My fellow Americans, and assorted worldwide denizens.... I sit here in my meager apartment at 11:49 on my birthday unsure what to write in this post. 36 years and twelve hours ago (give or take a half hour or so) I began the first of the 36 trips I have taken so far around the sun. That's a score and 16 for all you Lincoln afficianados.

I went back to my post from this time last year, hoping for some inspiration, and read a cautiously optimistic post written by a guy who, coming off a divorce, was cautiously optimistic about his life in general.

What a difference a year makes, my friends.

It's not that i'm not still optimistic, you see... it's more that there's only so many catyclismic, life altering kinda things that can happen to you before you start to think that maybe the problem isn't so much with the world, but in the decisions you make in response to what the world throws at you.

Maybe I'm just getting old.... Maybe it was the fact that many of my friends are scattered to the winds... maybe it's just the attitude here in my hometown since Katrina... but I'm thinking I need a change. A real one. An extreme one.

Further updates as events warrant.