Friday, December 31, 2010

End of the Year and 1 Pound Short!

As readers of my musings know, I believe it takes 7 steps to accomplish anything. Of course, Professor Javier Boleyn has proven me wrong with regard to the process of removing LARD! from one's body: that requires only the 2 steps that he preaches in his latest book, Body by Boleyn: 2 Steps to Letting Vanity Be Thy Name!

However, not withstanding the 2 Step Diet, for the last 5 months, on every day that I was able, I followed 7 Steps to Assessment:
1. Pull scale away from the wall.
2. Take off clothes.
3. Tap scale with toe to activate.
4. Wait for three zeros to appear on the display.
5. Suck in everything to assume the skinniest possible pose.
6. Close eyes and step on scale. Mutter a quick prayer to the anti-LARD!
7. Open eyes, observe result

Today was no exception. Damn, 1 pound short of a pail-and-a-half! But, even though I'm tremendously disappointed at not being able to post the much-sought-after one-and-a-half pail icon, I am determined to continue. My goal? Six-and-a-half more pounds by the time I have an appointment with Dr. Rachel S. Graves, MD at the end of January. She will look at me, look at her laptop screen, look back at me, look back at the laptop, then she will put her hands on the table and smile a Dr. Rachel S. Graves, MD smile and say, "Well, you have really lost some weight! Great! [Aside to herself, I don't know why he didn't take my medical advice 3 years ago] You must feel a lot better!" At which point, I, Jack D'Mestiere, will look at her and say, "I didn't feel bad before Dr. Rachel S. Graves, MD, this is all about vanity! Haven't you read Professor Javier Boleyn?" Then I will wink. Then Ryman is sitting on Fiora's head in the bed and she's telling me I have to get up and feed the damned cat. Poof! The dream always ends at the same place. I wonder what will happen? Will Dr. Rachel S. Graves, MD declare me Patient of the Year and award me a blue ribbon? I'd rather have a Tricerahops...but that would earn me a "Tsk Tsk."

LARD! is all around me, it's everywhere I go...

I'll tell you, it's not been easy this past month what with one party after another. And it's not going to be any easier this next month. So, even though the War on LARD! has become either trench warfare on the Western Front, or winter on the Eastern, I'm determined to see it through to its full 2-pail promise. This is the time, the time, I say, to stare LARD! in the face and watch it melt away like the Wicked Witch of the West! Bills, do your magic for me please!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

A Thursday Afternoon in Portland: Let's Go to the Radio Room!

Before noon, the blower sparked. It was Angela, the chiquita that runs the eatery down at the Radio Room, a joint me and Dolly-girl have been frequenting some, but not as frequently as we ought to frequent the joint. "Yallow?" "Fiora, is this Fiora D'Mestiere?" "That's who pays the phone bills. What's it?" "Angela. Radio Room. Haven't made yours acquaintances yet, but Jack gets a coffee drink on the house for having the best 'I'm gonna do it different next year, honest I am.'" "Sounds good. We were hoping to take shank's mare out for a little spin, so we'll see you in a bit. But, I've got an Edison above my head that tells me I'll be sipping the java--Old Mister Sol is over the yardarm and almost under it again. Jack will be looking for something a little different than a dose of beans if you get my drift." "Like snow in New York City. Seeya."

We hoofed it down there. The sign outside didn't lie, especially once my Dolly-girl made her entrance. There wasn't a wave in the place that matched hers. I told her so in her ear and she told me to behave. She likes it when I tell her that, though.

Seeing as how it was the happy hour, we decided to have a couple cold ones to go with the hot one and tie on a feedbag. I'm glad we did. You've heard me on this broadsheet extol the virtues of the birdseed at Radio Room. Well, Radio Room is not just for breakfast. We took a look at the whaddayawant and picked out a burger, some Radio Radio Cakes, and a bale of cowfeed. Dolly-girl made good on the free cuppa and then washed it down with a dose of the Champagne of Bottled Brewski, served in a, you-may-a-guessed-it, one of them glasses for bubbly. I totally dominated an IPA and then took a paler trip crosstown.

The feedbags found their way to us and we tied them on. Nothing at all wrong with what they load into them for you at a price that's fairer than a line drive to center field. A grilled cheese burger with ripe tomatos, wherever they came from. Mascarpone polenta cakes on a paprika cream--a sort of polenta paprikash! And the salad was yelling "Et tu Brutus?" We strolled out for about a Hamilton each--not bad considering the beers. I dropped Abe on top to keep Missy smiling and we headed out into the Stumptown cold. "Colder than a bad girl's heart," muttered Dolly-girl. Could be, but the Radio Room is always worth the walk.

Oh, what's this Face thing everyone talks about? Angela said to check them here.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

My favorite 100 photos that I took in 2010

NOW SHOWING! My favorite 100 of the 7,447 pictures I took in 2010. From Fairbanks, Alaska, to Victoria, British Columbia. via Portland, Oregon, Minneapolis, Minnesota, Chicago, Illinois, and Memphis, Tennessee, all the way to Paris, France and Bilbao, Spain...

By the way, all the images are © 2010 D'Mestiere Investigations

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year
from D'Mestiere Investigations!


Back by popular demand is our own Yule Log a la WPIX

Me and Dolly-girl want to wish all of our friends, from Stumptown to Hawkesbury; from the Rose City to the Windy City; from the Left Coast, which is the right one, to the Right Coast, which isn't; to Tinseltown, Ithaca Schmithica, the Valley With a Heart, the Heart of the Valley, Our Nation's Capital, and Salt City; to The Best Location in the Nation, Ravenrock Ranch, Ft. Lauderdale Island, Washington, the Redwood Forest and the Gulf Stream Waters;

A Very Merry Christmas and Best Wishes for a Healthy and Happy 2011!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Thursday Evening Dinner in Portland: The Divaville Party at Tony Starlight's Supperclub

About 30 minutes after the champagne corks popped, Dolly-girl stood on her toes, looked out the window over the shade, and said, "Radio Cab--saddle up!" She's getting in the mood for The Dude in True Grit, Re-dux. She also knew no one was interested in a night at a supper club minding their Ps, Qs, and car keys, if you get my drift.

We were headed for Tony Starlight's Supper Club to celebrate Jack spending another year looking down to see the grass. "We," in this case, was Kitty, Kay and T. Anthony Kavanagh, III, Juanita and Nunzio Zambone, Dolly-girl, and me, the birthday boy. Tony Starlight's is a joint we'd heard a lot about from Christa, the chiquita that puts on the Divaville show that me and Dolly-girl listen to every Wednesday on the Zenith. Every once in a whatever, Christa, and her buddy, Tony Starlight, dress up his club for a gathering of the Stumptown Rat Pack. This was no exception.

First thing you notice when you make your entrance into Tony's is that it's red. It even turned my business card red. Next thing you notice is that there's, in this order, a bar from the past, a stage from the past, table settings from the past, and a piano and projector from the future. Tony's making his way around--still in street clothes, but that will change soon--welcoming the crowd in and making sure the Missy's are making everyone feel Tony's love.

It being the holiday season, we were in for some special treats which you could see right off with a film running in the front of the house. Old Blue Eyes was batting his peepers at every chiquita in the place, even though he's dead and only with us thanks to the miracle of In-Focus and the creative genius of a Mister Steven Paul Jobs. Give it up for Mister Jobs! Anyhoo, Frankie-boy was crooning and decorating a tree with what we called tinsel back in the old days when tinsel was tinsel and icicles hung from eaves.

We were shown to our table, which was a primo spot, just in front of the stage. I'm not sure, but maybe Nuzio slipped a Jackson to the Betty who was seating us. Whatever. We parked our carcasses and quick as a Bobby Darin finger snap in Mack the Knife, Missy was there to see if we were interested in a little something to warm us up from the winter winds. Surprise of surprises, two bottles of bubbly had sparked a fire under us, but we weren't warm enough--"Drinks around, and don't let any moss grow under those slippers!" Some skidrows--rosso e bianco, and something a little stronger for the gents in the crowd. I told her I wanted to drown a grove, and the booze slinger delivered.

The Six-Men-in-a-Tub was a dandy and this is what Tony's joint looked like to me after I enjoyed the hell out of that bathtub full of the luckiest olives in Stumptown. By now, der Bingle was up on the screen and crooning song after song. Christa was working the room like Colby Lewis worked the Yankees in the ALCS--she cut a swathe through the room and left every table spinning.

Missy was back and tapping her pad while we fussed over the whaddaya-wants. Around the table we went. I knew right off: "Ride me some greens down the Appian Way and hang a beef." "Rare?" "Just walk it past a fire..." "Figured you for a rare man." That got her a wink from me. People ordered this and that along with a spinach artichoke dip plate and a baked brie. She was back in a flash with the start-us-ups and we dug in like the Allies at the Battle of the Bulge, which we would all be fighting once the night was over! The dip and cheez-whiz was as good as it gets and it got a lot of up and downs around the table. As you can see, a swarm of locusts don't pick a field any cleaner...

Kitty whistled up another bottle of rosso and, by now, everyone was in the mood for some live entertainment. The last slide was on the screen, and we saw Tony make his entrance, now dressed for action.

Just about then, Missy was back with the feedbags and the music was just starting with a fella, name of Bo, playing the 88s. What the hash slinger slung didn't disappoint and neither did Bo. Turns out, he's been around. In fact, if we'd a known that he was going to be there, and if Dolly-girl had read up on his rap sheet on the Wiki, they'd have discovered they had something in common. Anyway, turns out Bo's gal was part of the show--and a real pretty part too, follow?

Well, while we were still enjoying the feedbags Missy put in front of us, Tony, or maybe I should call him Mister Starlight, started in on his act. I was there to tell you here that he is a class act and he can croon and swoon with the best of them. I have to tell you though that he's a fan of a Mister Diamond, a Mister Neil Diamond, and I haven't been that much of a fan of his since listening to Cracklin' Rosie a few too many times at the Minnesota State Fair...but that's another story for a time gone by. I had to do the "Aw, shucks" routine when Tony led the crowd in a Happy Birthday to Me and a Guy Named Andy at the Next Table. But our crowd joined in and I was OK with letting them in on our fun.

About the time all the jaws stopped with the up and downs at our table--and I have to tell you, the heads were going up and down along with the jaws. Mister Tony Starlight knows how to run a Supper Club--it was time for Christa and Tony to test our brain power by asking a bunch of whaddya-knows about Christmas Music. Turns out we didn't know as much as we thought we did, but more than most people in the house and so Fiora and Nunzio stepped to the stage to collect our 4th Place Prize!

The time flew by, the music put us in that Christmas spirit, and we left, humming Jorgi Jorgenson's "I yust go nuts at Christmas,"
you know:
Oh, I yust go nuts at Christmas, On that yolly holiday,
I'll go in the red, like a knucklehead

Cause I squander all my pay.

I'm no Dino, but I know what he'd say. "I feel sorry for people who don't drink. They wake up in the morning and that's the best they're going to feel all day." But he'd add, "Frank, Sammy, and the boys agree, Tony Starlight's? No better way to spend an evening in Stumptown!"

Monday, December 13, 2010

Dispatch from Multnomah County District Court : Justice moves slowly

930. Been here 2 hours first jury being called. Just called my name ...
Off to do civic duty

Dispatch from Multnomah County District Court : I'm #010122

I guess I'm a peer of other 6 digit people ...

Dispatch from Multnomah County Court : Jury Duty

D'Mestiere Investigations are ready, willing, and able to serve their civic

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

The Javier Boleyn Lunch

Hope to have an update soon. Challenging time--Thanksgiving and a trip to the Valley of Kielbasa and Beer...

Lunch in Ithaca New York: Losing My Moosewood Virginity

Back a dozen years or so, me and Dolly-girl, first separately, and then together, if you get my drift, set our brake in a little town in what people from The Big Apple call 'upstate'; and what people in what people in The Big Apple call 'upstate' call 'upstate'; and what people in the real 'upstate' call 'The Southern Tier'; and what people in Ithaca call 'The Beautiful Finger Lakes Region'. Ithaca has got a rep for a lot of things and parking is one of them. Friends have a sticker on their car says 'Ithaca is Garages' instead of 'Ithaca is Gorges' which is one of those cute bumper sticker that is supposed to be a "play on words" is what I think Dolly-girl calls it. Check out the rules on the back of the parking ticket from one of the garages. Anyhoo, we lived there, separately and together, for a couple ten spots, or as Honest Abe woulda called it, a score. But in Ithaca, a score was what happened at State and Plain after dark...

The two of us had hopped a clipper to go back for Dolly-girl's parents three-score (how's that Abe?) celebration of setting their brake together. As long as we were back in that part of the world, we decided to mosey on up to Ithaca where Anna-Maria is setting her brake since she give Our Nation's Capital the cold shoulder. We decided to tie on the feedbag at a local Institution--Moosewood Restaurant. Yes, THE Moosewood Restaurant of some substantial fame, the girls tell me. In all those years, I'd never been there--a Moosewood Virgin, but then I did live in Newfield, albeit north of Route 13, for many years.

The place was buzzing on a Monday at just past when the noon whistle blows the second time. I guess people like to go there late or it takes a long time to chew all those leaves. Missy at the front door took a name and told us to cool our heels for a while while he checked out the back room. "'Bout 10 minutes--take a load off..." Dolly-girl said, "I'll just do a little shopping here, Jack--I could use some new Moosewood items." She used to go there back before I was keeping her company, and maybe after too, with some of her girlfriends.

Missy popped up from behind the counter, sort of called our name--I figured he was stubbin' his toe on the whole D'Mestiere thing as there sure wasn't going to be a decent veal in this place--and led us to a spot that suited me. I could keep an eye on the street while Anna-Maria covered the inside scene. Missy brought the whaddya-wants and disappeared. For quite a while. He was back, hemmin' and hawin' about whaddya-drinkins. "Three Bull Runs, or what ever you call the run of the tap here." "OK." Talkative. Nothing much colorful about Missy. He came back in a while, three glasses and an order pad. He looked expectantly. "I'll have the cowfeed, throw whatever Cookie mixes on it, and add the filet of curd on the side." He looked at me like he couldn't understand. Dolly-girl roller her eyes and translated, "Medium salad, house dressing, Tofu Kan." That got an up and down. She continued, "I'll have the side salad and the fish cake." "Hold everything, right there. I thought this place was the number one leaf muncher spot on the planet," I said. "What gives?" "It's not all leaves, Jack. Fish are close, you know, some vegetarians eat fish..." "Yeah, chicken too," and I rolled my peepers. Missy looked at Anna-Maria quizzically. "Hash u a greenie and stick in my pocket." She's my daughter. Dolly-girl told him the avocado in a pita sandwich. He nodded and walked away. I don't think he said a word. Meanwhile, I noticed that Mike had something strange going on. There was rice in there. Dolly-girl explained that Ithaca isn't exactly the driest place in the world, especially in the summer, and a little rice in there kept things dry. "I know that, Dolly-girl, but look at that one." "It's brown rice, Jack, organic brown rice." I needed a wave today. She would've gotten some shots...

Missy came back in a while with some food. My salad, Dolly-girl's side salad, and nothing for Anna-Maria. No talk, just put plates down. Dolly-girl munched her leaves while I waited since a trip through the garden was going to be it for me. Time passed...slowly. Another Missy stopped by and topped off the water. Our original Missy stopped by, noticed that I hadn't eaten my salad and asked if everything was OK. "Just waiting for them to get their lunches there." Another quizzical look. Then a different Missy brought Dolly-girl's fish cake. Still no greenie in the pocket. Must take a long time to cook that. Finally it showed up and we all tied on the feed bags, which were, in my case, OK, pretty standard salad, although Cookie stirred up a good dressing, I'll say that. Could'a pinned a rose on the salad though. Dolly-girl and Anna-Maria gave the up and down to theirs.

Missy came back eventually and asked if anyone had a sweet tooth. Anna-Maria and Dolly-girl consulted a "decision support system" that Anna-Maria had on her blower and decided the vegan chocolate cake would be worth the calories. I rolled my blue boys under a missing wave, but the gateaux did look like it deserved eating.

Dolly-girl picked up the tab and headed for the shopping area. I guess she tipped Missy, although I would have tipped him, "You could talk to customers, you know." That got me a shot through two waves...

We headed out and down the street to a place a little more up my alley. Jack's take? I didn't miss a thing in that score of not going to the Icon. If you're in Ithaca, stop at Moosewood, buy the cookbook, and head for the Ale House. You can make the food at home, but you can't make a Racer 5...of course, neither could they, but they had it on tap.