Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Waddling Around Ashland: Is There No Escape?

"Jack, the roadster is packed, now would you shake a leg and get it in gear? We gotta a lotta ground to cover today if we're going to make it to the wedding party that starts tomorrow, you know, Dania's little Dot is getting hitched down there in wine country. Now, get it going!" "Alright, alright, Dolly-girl. Just let me get my heater and my Luckies and I'll be ready to roll. You know it takes me a while..." "For Sam's sake and the love of Mike, you are the slowest. And leave that damned gun and those smokes at home. You sure don't need the gun and you don't smoke." "Anymore..." "What's that mumbling?" "Mumble mumble..."
Me and Dolly-girl were taking off on a little adventure and, how shall I say it, it was starting off on the il piede sinistro, if you get my drift. I just don't know how she gets started so much faster than I do...

We eventually got out the door, into the Chevy, and down the road to Red Bluff, California, where we pulled over for the night. Dolly-girl had found us a roadside hotel--what they call a motor hotel--where we could rest our butts after a long day of doing nothing. I spotted a road house where we could tie on a feedbag and knock back a couple cold ones. Dolly-girl went for a vino bianco. It was a coupla IPAs for me. Surprising when it comes to drinks the two of us are not, I guess. We had a nice relaxing time sitting outside along the river. Something felt real comfy about this town, but I couldn't put my finger on it.

The next morning, shank's mare and I went out for our morning constitutional and I found what made me have that kinship feeling. Turns out Red Bluff must have a touch of that unsavory element. Either that or the 24-hour bail bond place has the same sort of bottom line that D'Mestiere Investigations has. Let's just say that it's a good thing Dolly-girl sells a poem from time to time to keep beans on the table back in Stumptown!

Skip ahead. The hitching was about as much fun as you can have, especially when it takes place near Santa Rosa and you get to make a coupla trips to what Beluga Slim calls "The Mothership of IPAs", the Russian River brewery. I'll tell you, those boys know how to brew them some beer that will make you spin and lucky for us, there was plenty to go around. And you know, a beer at breakfast just isn't that bad a way to spend time on a little vacation get-away. Of course, it earned Cuco and me a round of tsks tsks from Dolly-girl and Dania, mostly 'cause they couldn't quite buy our "what are time zones, really?" argument.

The following Saturday, found me out and about in Ashland, you know that spot where her and me go each year to see the live action plays that she likes so much. I'm pretty sure I've given you the straight talk on this before. It's the weekend-a-year when she goes all nerdy on me. The rest of the year she's only nerdy during the week, but hey, Fiora wouldn't be Dolly-girl if she weren't like that.
Anyhoo, I decided to get up with the chickens and get out on the streets to see what Ashland looked like early and to wear off some LARD! as I knew back at the old Blue Moon B&B, the joint where Dolly-girl, or as they call her there "Fiora, dear", likes to set our brake, Dino would be cooking up a storm for birdseed time. I couldn't wait to just enjoy a meal in peace. In fact, given that the War on LARD! was going so well, I might even cast caution to the wind and eat my fill!

Sure enough, Dino rolled out a frittata that would make a hen proud of where her fruit ended up. As I mentioned, I'd decided to throw caution to the wind and I put what looked to be a delicious home-fried potato on my plate. "Jackie-boy, just what gives you the idea that you can hang a "Mission Accomplished" banner on your bridge and act like you're King of Whatever, prancing around in your flight suit?" "Javier--I mean Professor Boleyn?" I looked up looking for the Boleyn's Eye View Sky Cluster (® Boleyn Enterprises) that had found me. It must be in the umbrella..."Jackie-boy, look down."

The voice didn't have the usual booming Voice-of-God quality--it sounded right-in-the-room, if you get my drift, even though we were outside. "That's right, Jackie-boy, in the flesh." Sitting next to Dolly-girl was, OH MY GOD! PROFESSOR JAVIER BOLEYN (® Boleyn Enterprises). I gulped, gasping for air. My breakfast was ruined. "That's right Jackie-boy..." "Professor, must you call me Jackie-boy here in front of strangers. It's not like when it's Bar-Am and you are talking through the Tap-Cam (® Boleyn Enterprises) or on the LARD! app (© Boleyn Software, Ltd.) on my iPhone (Galactic © Steve Jobs). "Yes, Jack, I must call you Jackie-boy. It's part of the humiliating Demean-o-talk that's a key ingredient in a new strategy outlined in my latest book, Respect Weighs Heavily: Lose it in 2-Steps with Professor Javier Boleyn (Pre-orders are now being accepted on (© Steve Jobs and I must leave you now, as enjoyable as this is. I'm here as a consultant. You see, Falstaff has been 2-Stepping and now needs to don a fat suit to play the part. I'm here to perform my patented Hip-No-Therepy (USPTO 7,932,457) which will allow him to wear the suit without imagining that he's a hefty hog again. Ta ta. I'm off."

"Go ahead and finish your breakfast, Jack. Don't let this chance meeting spoil your vacation." "I can't do it, Dolly-girl. The Professor is correct. I have no business trumpeting "Mission Accomplished" just because I've shed 61 pounds of LARD! Osama bin LARDEN may be dead, but another LARDorist will rise to take his place. Eternal vigilance is my fate." "You're right about that, Jackie-boy." The professor popped out of the doorway as he was leaving. "And oh, Fiora, dear, I've autographed your copy of Polka the Pounds Away: 2-Steppin' in NEPA with Professor Javier Bloeyn on the table inside. I depart!" Fiora blushed. I didn't even know she was thinking about 2-Stepping!

The solitary home fry remained on the plate and I left the table, not quite sated. The next day I was determined to walk enough before Dino filled the feedbags that the good professor would not be able to interfere with my full enjoyment of a savory meal. Well, it turns out it was sweet day, not savory day, at the Blue Moon, but you get my whadda-ya-mean, right? I got an early start because I knew it was going to be a long road before I got back and could settle down, smug as a bug, and render the professor speechless. Hours later, I arrived at the table, exhausted, sweaty, and ready to carbo-load. The world famous oat flapjacks were being flipped and I eyed a fresh blue-berry something or other that was fixin' to be poured over those griddle cakes. And was that the smell of, yes! Bacon!"

"Good morning, Jackie-boy." The professor had beat us all to the table. He was looking at the screen of a gadget the likes of I'd never seen before. He noticed."Oh, this, just a little iSomething (USPTO All Parallel Universes Patent Pending, oh what the hell, just give it a number, you know it will be patented, Steve Jobs) that Steve lent me. I've connected it to the Sky Cluster and used it to track you this morning. Good walk, Jackie-boy, and at a brisk 4.5 mile-per-hour pace, as well." "What the? Pit tags? Do you have pit tags in me?" "Oh, never. Don't need that old technology. Steve and I dreamed up something new (USPTO patent pending Javier Boleyn and his new best friend, Steve Jobs) that uses a satellite acquisition to identify and follow the spectral emission of your perspiration." "You track me by my sweat?" "Yes, indeed, Jackie-boy. As long as there's a single bead, you are in my bead...I'm proud of you, too, Jackie-boy. You walked by the Morning Glory and stayed on the other side of the street. You know you gain weight when you walk by places like that." "Wail and whoan." "Stop your sniveling and eat breakfast."

Dino set my breakfast and I couldn't believe my eyes. An entire flapjack, some of the wonderful blueberry stuff, whatever it's called, and bacon!" "Jackie-boy, I didn't want to completely humiliate you, so I instructed Dean to serve you this modest breakfast. Of course, you can't eat it. I used the Boleyn Enterprises Carbo-Carver (® Steve Jobs--I sold it to him...) to cut your allowable portion. See it there, by the cantaloupe. Enjoy!

No comments: