Saturday, December 31, 2011

Waddling Through December and 2011: The Results

At the risk of rubbing it in, I'll zoom out and remind everyone that I waddled around Hawai'i for a while in December.

Here's a more realistic view of what I accomplished. Not bad, but vacation does not lend itself to racking up the miles. Still, a respectable 254.57 miles (could you be a little more precise, Jack?) for the month.

Here's what my 2011 Stumptown waddles look like. Total mileage for 2011 checks in at 2,432.16, or the distance from Stumptown to...what the what? New York? Fort Sumter? Fernadina Beach and Gainsville? Acapulco? Unalaska? Chicoutimi and Québec City? Jeezu, Jack!

It's been a good year for waddling. And, I checked out of the year short 2.72 pails of LARD! from where I started in August, 2010. Take that Professor Javier Boleyn!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, 2012!

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 Pennsylvania's Capital City; to The Best Location in the Nation, Ravenrock Ranch, Whidbey Island, Washington, the Redwood Forest and the Gulf Stream Waters; to the Vale of Glamorgan; Kodiak Island, and the tropical paradise of Hawai'i

A Very Merry Christmas and Best Wishes for a Healthy and Happy 2012!

A Night Out in Stumptown: Poutine at 15th Avenue Hophouse

Blower. Kitty. "Yallow, Jack's on the line. D'Mestiere Investigations. We make your trouble no trouble at all..." "It's Kitty." "I knew it was you 'cause of that gadget Dolly-girl put on the blower so as we can tell whosit before we decide to..." "Old technology, Jack. Called Caller ID. Been around for years. Anyhoo, look, I had my thinking cap on my bean and a GE flashed that said maybe we ought to mosey on down to that new hop house on 15th and Brazee and tie on a feedbag." "You mean the 15th Avenue Hophouse?" "The same." "I'll check." I looked around the room and saw lots of up-and-downs seeing as how I was using other new-fangled technology--a "Speaker Phone"--and Dolly-girl, Dania Inebriata-Beech, Cuco O'Macka, T. Anthony Kavanaugh III, and Libretto all knew what Kitty had been pitching. "We're on."

Turns out the FAHH (that's what I'm gonna call the 15th Avenue Hophouse as it's easier to type and I'm typing this myself 'cause Thelma has the day off and I type slower than cement erodes according to Dolly-girl) is the partner of the Hawthorne Hophouse and they both got the same whatchmacallit. Also turns out that if you want a beer, it's a place you ought to go to, but then that wasn't a surprise to me (or to any of you that know about the fact that I like to waddle from joint to joint).

Where was I. Oh, yes. So we all piled in a couple roadsters and headed down there. It didn't take Missy anytime at all to fill some glasses and set them down in front of us. "You all look like you think you've come to the right place and I'm here to tell you, you have. Just have a pull on those brewskis and a look at the whaddayawant, and I'll be back in two shakes."

"I'll tell you one thing you could bring us from the getgo--some of those sweet potato fries. Kitty knows what Kitty likes and I'd like it if you'd put them down right in front of me." I guess Kitty might have seen the inside of the joint too. And, what the? They were a quarter gone before I could even get the Kodak focused. And it wasn't a couple minutes before that plate looked like a scene from Exodus 10: 1-20. Jeezu, those folks were famished, I guess. I looked around the table and six sets of mandibles were masticating and six sets of vocal chords were purring. Make that seven.

Missy was back, and none too soon, if you ask me. "What's it gonna be, Jack?" How is it people always seem to know my name? Is it that billboard that Thelma talked me into putting up around town to try and increase business? "I'm a little cautious seeing as how we are a long ways from Québec, but hows the poutine?" "Me, how would I know, do I look like I eat that?" I had to take her point. Professor Boleyn's advice was wasted on her... "Well, I'm gonna a chance it. Une poutine, s'il vous plait, et un plat des Oeuf de Diable a la wasibi to back that up, just in case." "Vous l'avez!" I looked around. Everyone else went for the pretty standard fare, but no one seemed like they were jumping on my wagon. But one thing was for sure, everyone was finding the suds that washed their dishes, if you get my drift.

Missy put the cacklefresh down in front of me and they looked like there were gonna make me stand up and pay attention. Sparks were flying off those henfruit and the hash slinger had thrown a little red on there in honor of the season, I guess. It hit the spot. But ah, the piece de resistance...

Missy set the plate in front of me. "Voila!" I dug in quick. It was the real thing--crispy fires, tasty gravy and curds--wait, the only chink in the armor, no squeak in the curds--even this far from the vaisseau-mère! "C'est bon, Missy!" "Heureaux vous l'aimez..." My blower sparked. Without even looking, I gave it the "yallow." "Jackie-boy, what is THAT in front of you? Have you lost your mind? A pile of fried potatoes, smothered in gravy and cheese curds? In what universe is that part of the 2-Step Duh! Diet? It's going to be the one-million steps for you tomorrow diet..." "Professor Boleyn? How did you find me? How..." "Jackie-boy, the Red Alert warnings were going off through the entire Boleyn Sky Cluster. You can't make an order like this sous le couvert dde l'obscurité. But, you know what, enjoy your poutine and I will speak with you tomorrow. Randall, put an early morning scolding for Jackie-boy on my calendar..."

I felt lower than a pill bug in the cellar with my tail between my legs. Dolly-girl put her hand on my arm and shot me a smile through the wave. "Forget him, Jack. It's the holidays, we're with friends and family, and even you deserve a night off." I gave her a peck on the kisser and went back to my poutine. Ha! Pill bugs don't have tails! Wait, that's no pill bug...

Friday, December 16, 2011

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Punaluu, Hawaii VRBO Listing 229721 Blue Ginger Beach House

I hate to do this. I only do this because of the email my wife received from the owner in response to my review and her response on the VRBO web page. I believe the owner is disingenuous. I gave, I thought, a very fair review on VRBO. She responded. I can't on VRBO. But I can here. I would not have responded if she had left it alone. Most people rated her property a five; I rated it a two. A simple, "I'm sorry you were disappointed," would have been fine. But, we received an email transferring all the guilt to us after we paid over $1,000 for a week that promised something that wasn't.

The place is well equipped and comfortable, and I stated as much. I never said it wasn't a good value. I brought to prospective renters' attention that there is road noise and construction until February. It is not "landscaping" as the owner responds, unless "landscaping" to you includes large excavators, dump trucks, etc, starting at 7 AM or before. They are in the process of removing concrete and steel that was part of the temporary bridge. This is the beach view I observed and below is a little movie of the "landscaping." I realize it's not her fault, but let's be honest. It's not "landscaping."

Maybe most all beach view places on O'ahu are on highways. Not all are. You might want to rent one that isn't. All I pointed out is that there is traffic and a lot of it. What I didn't put in my review--a couple nights we counted over 30 buses in a single hour going by the house.

I do not question the comfort of the place. In fact, I was quite complimentary in my review. I just wish the owner had been forthcoming in her ad. I did not say in VRBO that the ad was misleading. I did not ask for a discount. I did not ask for a refund. I only believe that an honest review is an honest review.

Monday, December 5, 2011