Archive for November, 2009

A Moment with Cafe Darkness

An email exchange from the ladies of CD.  Always ladylike, we keep our disagreements civil and find resolutions that are mutually satisfying.  Except for when TLW is sweet on her cab driver and the Barista starts bitching about the meter.  Or whenever Walmart or the Black Eyed Peas are mentioned.  In those instances,  truth bombs are thrown with no mercy.

B: Are you here? 

T: I’m back from lunch now! What’s up? 

B: I wanted to go smoke at Penny Lane.  You know, for old times sake.

 T: Dang.  There’s always after work….

 B: Was going to fitness @ 5:30 and would need a shower…

 T: Well just let me know! I lunch timed fitnessed so I’m free and clear.

 B: Did you really just let my dilemma between fitness and smoking go unchecked? 

 T: Jesus Christ-what was I thinking?  Mea culpa!

 B: You should be ASHAMED of yourself.

 B: All caps usage intentional.

 T: I read that with EMPHASIS so good job. I am ashamed of myself. Promise to never speak of this again nor tell anyone? 

 B: I’m going to go blog it on the mountain.  O’re the hills and every where.  Unless…

 T: Oh dear. I am frightened. What do you require? IN MY DEFENSE I was in the middle of working on the budget-which is tedious and mathy. I know it’s not an excuse but it’s an explanation

B:  Unless you walk with me to the market and smoke one in Penny Lane.   Let’s schedule an uber urgent meeting in Outlook.  How do I access the high importance font?

PS – Nice work on the bolded caps.  I am supremely irritated.

 T: Counter offer: I will give you a donation and we smoke outside.  The reason for my counter offer is that I have a meeting at three that I just realized and need to get ready for. I can come down post haste!

 B: Deal

Exactly as the Founding Fathers Intended

Give Me Foolishness

“We should be free to eat Big Macs® and smoke cigarettes on our way to have abortions.  This is America, dammit”.

“Mother, do you think this is appropriate conversation for Sunday dinner?”

“Yes I do.  I’m sick of people deciding what’s good for other people.  Let the idiots be idiots in peace”.

Spoken by an old woman in reference to healthcare reform.  She brought a tear to my eye.

No Smoking!

For serious!

In case you have been living under a rock the past few months then you are aware that Virginia’s smoking ban goes into affect tomorrow and us Café Darkness gals could not be more excited! Who doesn’t appreciate government’s intrusiveness on business owner’s rights to do what they want in their own establishment? I mean! Loves!  Although I do wonder what people will bitch about now, the ban got me thinking about other things we should ban in restaurants and bars.  While we are it why don’t we also make the following illegal:

 

1-Screaming children and their inattentive parents.  I understand that children are our most precious resource which is why it is most troubling when this resource is clearly upset and screeching at the top of its lungs and their parents are unaware of scene unfolding around them.  I get that in order to not lose it completely parents must learn to block out a certain amount of the screaming, but here’s a special request from TLW: when you are at a restaurant (other than Chucky Cheese) and your little one is having a complete and utter meltdown because they can’t dip their French fries in chocolate syrup mayonnaise, please calm the little angel down instead of ignoring it and ruining everyone else’s dining experience. Thanks!

 

2-Time limits in the bathroom. Especially for the ladies.  Especially in the Fan.  As much as I enjoy waiting in line for twenty minutes to go to the restroom I hereby petition that a five minute rule be imposed on all bathroom visits.  Ladies, I understand your need to go in the bathroom with your five closest gal pals and gossip about how hot that guy is at the other end of the bar (he’s really not, that’s the booze talking, but I digress) how about you take that convo outside-with the smokers. Ha! Zingers! Five minutes is enough time to take care of whatever biz you should be doing in a public bathroom.  End of discussion.

 

3-Guys in Lobster Pants or Ed Hardy. Different kinds of douche, but douchey nonetheless. It offends my “vintage hobo” fashion sensibilities and hurts my eyes and soul.

 

4-“Brunch Menus” It makes me sad when I go to brunch and the menu only allows me to order egg’s Benedict crab pizza. That is foul and makes me queasy-especially on a drinking stomach.  I want a cheeseburger damn it, not an avocado hollandaise turkey bean sprout wrap. Vom.

 

5-Loud, annoying drunk girls that aren’t us.  Drunk people are annoying but drunk girls really take it to the next level. They kind of resemble unruly children in their loud shrieking and tendency to cause scenes.  Unless you’re the CD, please take it elsewhere.

Black Friday Shopping Guide Part 3

Do you love Jesus?

 

If you love Jesus then you love America, freedom and Black Friday. It’s just that simple.  You’ve already learned two of the three tips to having a successful Black Friday: preparation and optimization techniques.  You know your basics and you are 2/3 of the way there.  Perhaps the most important part of any shopping spree is getting ready the night prior. What you do on Black Friday Eve, also called Thanksgiving by some, is crucial. 
 
First and foremost you need to start drinking.  Heavily.  The amount you drink is important as you do not want to drink so much that you pass out. Instead you need to maintain a decent buzz that will last you until the store opens.  I recommend drinking whiskey or wine. Beer tends to bloat one up and causes frequent bathroom breaks.  Interperse alcoholic drinks with a Red Bull (it gives you wings!) every third drink or so.  Illegal drug usage is acceptable but not recommended.  You do not want getting all jittery before the store opens. You need to be feisty enough from the whiskey that you do not mind throwing ‘bows but level-headed enough to remember you want that Nintendo Wii Console with Wii Sports Resort Value Bundle at the unbeatable price of $279.00! 
 
DO NOT GO TO SLEEP!  If you fall asleep and get up early then you have already lost.  Sleep deprivation adds to the sense of excitement and urgency.  Pop caffeine pills to stay awake if necessary a la Jessie Spano in Saved by the Bell.  Arrive at the store at LEAST four hours before it opens.  Do not bring extra equipment (i.e propane stoves, grills, etc) with you while wait in line.  Do bring more alcohol, cigarettes and music-death metal preferably.  Bring snacks.  Beef Jerky is a good choice as are pre-cooked Lil Smokies.  Do jumping jacks to remain alert. Heckle others in line. Warn them that you are about to “bring it”. 
 
Send undercover ops into the line to feel out what they are going for and adjust your plan accordingly. About twenty minutes before the store opens take three shots of whiskey to get warmed up. Dispense walkie talkies to your Patriots. Remind them of the goal at hand. Do trust falls to increase team morale.  Huddle up and pray five minutes before it is “go time”. Ask JC to bless you and make your shopping trip successful.  He is not too busy to answer your prayers!
 
If you follow these three easy steps then success will be yours. You will have more KitchenAid Professional 5 Plus Stand Mixers for $250.00 (normally priced at $320.00!) than you can shake a stick at. 
 
 

Black Friday Shopping Guide Part 2

Do you love Freedom?

Do you love Freedom?  Do you hate freedom-mongers?  Then by transitive reasoning you need to get out there on Black Friday and wear your dollar on your sleeve.  Tell the world you are proud to be an American. Do not let the terrorists win!   They don’t want you to buy that Fuji FinePix J28 Camera, 2GB SD Card & Case for the unbeatable price of just $80.00 but this America, damn it and we do what we damn well please! 

Black Friday is in two days. Are you ready? Of course you are not ready. You have only learned the first in the trifecta of Black Friday shopping rules. Yesterday you learned the importance of preparation and the importance of deeming which items are worth your time in obtaining.  Today you will learn about store optimization techniques.   

If possible plant an undercover agent as a hired employee several months prior to learn the inside tips and tricks to opening procedures.  Who hold the keys? Who is in charge?  Do all doors open simultaneously?  Are all registers staffed and open at the same time?  Have your undercover agent tediously detail all store procedures in a notebook that may be referred to on Friday. 

Obtain store blue prints. Memorize them.  It should take you no longer .2 seconds to tell which aisle has the Yankee Candles and which aisle has the plasma screen TVs.  Once the store’s layout has been committed to memory sketch color-coded foot trails based on deal juiciness. Memorize them.  Sketch and memorize alternate routes in case of roadblocks caused by piles of frenzied shoppers. 

The Leader of the group will dispense walkie talkies to other Patriots prior to the store opening. Once the store opens the Leader needs to obtain a bird’s eye view of the store where he or she can direct the rest of the teammates’ actions.  There needs to be at least two Runners. These Patriots need to be small in stature and fast-footed. They can not be afraid to throw a punch and be a good tumbler.  Tasers are not required, but recommended.  You will also need a Shopping Cart Czar who is to be positioned at a key location in the store where they remain stationed with the shopping cart. The cart must never move its predetermined position and its placement must be equidistant from your desired items.  The Shopping Cart Czar should preferably be trained in mixed-martial arts and not be afraid to use nunchucks in extreme situations. 

All team mates should practice agility exercises in the anticipation of bottlenecks caused by narrow aisle ways. Yoga, Pilates and strength resistance training are key.  Watch nature videos of monkeys in their natural habit and learn to climb.  This is particularly important if you plan on going to Costco or Sam’s Club.  Go rappelling to get over your fear of heights. Get over any fears of enclosed spaces by getting unnecessary MRIs several weeks prior.

If you follow these simple tips then you will find you are 2/3 of the way to success.  You will get the last DieHard Wheeled Battery Charger/Start for the basement bargain price of $69.99. Trust.  Up tomorrow: Black Friday Eve Rituals.

Breaking Up Is Hard To Do

Concerned Coworker:  What’s up with your boyfriend?  I haven’t heard you talk about him in a while.

Amorous Lady:  Oh, I’m not allowed to call him anymore.

Concerned Coworker:  Why?  Did you break up?

Amorous Lady:  Well, not really.  I was told I had to stop calling him my sexy boyfriend.  I’m not supposed to talk to him again.

Concerned Coworker:  Huh?  I thought you guys had been dating for a few months.

Amorous Lady:  Right, I wanted to go out with him – that’s why I told him he is my sexy boyfriend and that I’m his girlfriend and that he couldn’t see other people.  Some woman in HR told me I’m not allowed to call him that anymore and that I have to stay away.  How stupid is that?

Concerned Coworker:  Okay….that’s..uh…wow.

Amourous Lady:  I hate Human Resources.  They always pick on me. 

Editor’s Note – I am so excited that I found Amorous Lady!  I have such high hopes that she will be as entertaining as Barefoot Coworker.  I think I kind of miss Barefoot since she left to pursue her scrapbooking dreams.

Black Friday Shopping Guide Part 1

Do You Love America?

Black Friday will here before you know it. It is the most important shopping day of the year and in case you did not know, we are in the middle of the worst recession since the Great Depression.  What better way to help bail out the banks than going out and buying a bunch of useless crap you do not need and can not afford?  Far be it from me to call someone Un-American but if you do not go shopping on Black Friday then you are, at the very least, a Communist Socialist.  

To prepare you for the shopping bonanza that will shortly ensue the CD will have a three-part series instructing you how to get ready for Black Friday.  Do not be fooled by other Black Friday shopping guides! They are all Socialist Communists trying to trick you into staying home and save your rubles…er…um…dollars.   

Today we will focus on the first step: preparation.  Before you can effectively spend money you must identify which items you want to purchase and where said items will be located.  Do you want new bathroom towels or Rock Band?  Tickle-Me-Elmo or a new lap top?  Which big box chain is selling said item? Wal-Mart? Target? Best Buy? 

Ask yourself if you are attempting to obtain the “hot” item the store is selling and weigh out the benefits and consequences of attempting to procure said item. Sure, everyone wants a $3.00 coffee pot but at what cost?  If there are only 15 $3.00 coffee pots but forty five people trying to obtain said coffee pot then perhaps your odds of getting your alternate “must have” item on your list is the better option.  Clearly I am referring to the Nash Equilibrium TheoryEveryone wants the best deal but if everyone goes for the best deal then many people leave empty handed.  Instead, pick the second and third best deals. (I.e. the Comfort Seat Cushion with Heat & Massage for the unbelievably low price of $17.49 or Country Style Holiday Doormats for the everything-must-go-bargain price of $2.99). 

If you want to really make Black Friday your bitch you will need to make it a group effort.  Enlist fellow patriots to help.  Make sure there is a clear leader of the group and delegate responsibilities accordingly ahead of time to avoid confusion.  Make it clear from the beginning that this is not a democracy. There is no time for “group think” on Black Friday.  Have a back up plan in case someone gets lost or trampled.  Bring extra body bags to prevent slippery floors caused by bodily fluids.

Plan, plan, plan. I can not stress this enough. Expect the unexpected.  Anticipate roadblocks and deal with them accordingly. Mental preparation is key.  Visualize your items and make it happen. If you follow these steps then I promise you walk out of that K-Mart with the $25.00 Martha Stewart comforter of your dreams. 

Tomorrow we will focus on store optimization techniques.

Top Five Things I Love About The Holidays!

The real meaning of Christmas!

The CD will use any-and I mean any-reason to have cocktails.  Yeah, it’s raining! Time for a ‘tini!  Whoo hoo it’s a day that ends in “y”! Wine me! You catch my drift.  Everyone knows the Holidays are all about boozing and getting in and out of awkward situations which is why I love it.  But the Holidays aren’t just about drinking too much egg nog on a school night. LOL/JK they totally are but there are other things about this time of year that make it great.  Below are the top five reasons I love the Holidays:

1-Holiday Office Parties.  Once a year the planets collide in such a way and the Universe blesses you with the best party of the year: The Holiday Office Party.  Barista and I like to skip the buffet and head straight to the bar.  Too many Lil Smokies impedes the wine ifyouknowwhatimsayin.  Last year a guy from IT said he would like to make me one of his “office girls” whilst getting handsy at the bar. The year before that B and I decided we wanted to get one of our coworkers hammer-timed but ended up getting a little too tipsy ourselves.  Later on that night I peed in a not so hidden spot off Robinson and fell down attempting to enter Three Monkeys. You guys! Classy!

2-Black Friday. What better way to celebrate American consumerism, consumption and excess than Black Friday? A friend compared it to America’s version of the Running of the Bulls and I couldn’t agree more.  It’s not a party until grandma gets trampled! If you need me on Friday I’ll be drinking whiskey waiting for Target to open. If I don’t get one of those three dollar coffee pots then there will be hell to pay. 

 

3-Christmas Cards.  There’s a rule about Christmas cards that, if violated, will result in immediate expulsion from heaven. It goes like this: if you have a child the power of Christ compels you, nay forces you, to put their picture on a Christmas card.  If you are childless, but married and have pets then you should put their picture on your Christmas card because dogs in Santa suits are cute.  If you unmarried and childless then no one cares about your Christmas cards so don’t even bother. 

4-Secret Santa.  Secret gift giving is the very merry passive aggressive way to point out one’s faults without them realizing who is gently telling them to use mouthwash or shower more regularly.  Office secret Santas only double the enjoyment.  I would give my right arm to have T Saur as my Secret Santa. I would bequeath him the following gifts: cough drops, soap, a mirror, a book on how to reconnect with your child, some beef jerky, a water bottle and some cologne that does not smell like he purchased it from a dance club bathroom. 

5-Time off. It’s not just my time off I appreciate but everyone else’s time off as well.  Starting today Steal Your Soul Inc. is a veritable skeleton crew and TLW loves!  I heart not having awkward morning chit chat, dealing with the impossibly cramped break room, spending an hour parking my gd car, seeing coworkers at lunch, talking to coworkers, being around coworkers, what have you.  Conversely I also love not coming to work and, fair warning, yours truly is off for the longest stretch I have had off since I graduated college starting December 23rd 2009.  Woo woos for everybody!

An Open Letter to Meade Skelton

Dear Mr. Skelton,

We at Cafe Darkness are huge fans.  Well, not literally huge, we’re actually kind of petite, but we’re very big fans in the most figurative sense of that word.  We are also loyal fans.  By loyal fans, I mean we discovered your music about a month ago and we haven’t been able to stop listening since!  I don’t think that TLW and I have spent so much time talking about anything ever before, except for maybe her feral cats behavioral issues or Lady Gaga.  The point is, we have chatted you up so much that all of our friends now know you and love your music too.  Your fan base grows daily!

We need to know when you are playing next.  We understand that you have declined several invitations to appear at Tweetsgving next Tuesday.  Maybe it just wasn’t enough notice to fit with your schedule.  But we have a sneaking suspicion that you may not want to play next Tuesday…if that’s the case, let us assure you that you will be playing in front of the nicest group of hipsters hipster-bloggers blogger hipsters scoooter riders PBR drinking hipsters aarrggh Richmonders around.  Everyone wants more Meade! 

If you play at Tweetsgiving, your performance may even boost the local economy!  If you won’t do it for your fans, will you do it for the economy?  We don’t want to beg, but pretty pretty please with a cherry on top of your Twinkie please please please play at Tweetsgiving. 

If you can’t answer the Tweetsgiving call of duty, please post your show schedule soon.

In awe,

Cafe Darkness

 

Cat Scratch Fever!

It's Play Time!

Recently some friends and family have expressed concern over my 24 semi-feral cats.   They claim that no one should own 24 cats and to that, I agree. I don’t trust even numbers and 25 is an unlucky number so I am actually going to need 27.  Technically I already have 27, but only if you count the dead ones in the freezer.  I hope to round out the family this weekend with some good old fashioned alley hunting. Who else is going to care and love for those helpless kitties if not for me?  They would die on the streets if I did not save them and take them home to my one bedroom apartment!

Apparently some crack pot doctors have done studies proving that cat feces can lead to schizophrenia.  I have never heard of anything more ridiculous in my entire life!  How could the droppings from my little alley treasures ever make someone go crazy?  These “studies” by these “doctors” are always proving something and then disproving the exact same thing a week later. Next thing you know we’ll hear that smoking is bad for you!  What a bunch of nut jobs.  I think they need to have their heads examined!

Honestly, I just don’t see what the problem is.  They are well fed and loved.  I feed them a mixture of turkey soup and wet cat food I prepare fresh each night. I make sure I don’t make enough for them all to eat because I don’t want them to lose their ability to hunt for food.  I toss the soupy mixture on the floor and let them fight over who gets what.  Survival of the fittest so to speak.  On Friday nights we do feeding time a bit differently and I feed them off my stomach! As for paying for the food I just use my welfare checks or just steal donations left outside of the SPCA.  The SPCA has a ton of rich people donating money to it, so I don’t feel bad grabbing a couple of cans of Fancy Feast for my Littles! 

Cleaning up after them can be hard since I only have room for two litter boxes. I used to clean the litter box up to five times a day and even set up my alarm to wake up at night but I got tired of doing that so now I just let them go wherever they can find a spot. I’ve gotten rid of most of my furniture and even sleep on a plastic lawn chair that I can just hose off every so often.  They don’t seem to mind that I only sweep up after them once every few weeks and they tend to make their business in the corners anyways.  I try to limit their water intake to cut down on that “cat pee” smell. I don’t notice it anymore but apparently it is “offensive to the neighbor”.  When it is time to clean up I just open up my back door and sweep all of their poop onto the balcony me and my other neighbors share.  My neighbor’s toddler thinks it’s Play Doh! 

And for all of you that say I’m using a “wall of kitties” to hide any personal pain I may be feeling I say you’re the crazy one!  Just because I’m thirty years old, single and have 24 (soon to be 27!) semi-feral cats does not mean I’m lonely.  Who could be lonely with 24 little love bugs around hopping up on every possible surface of my apartment?  Not this girl. Sure, it can tough to explain to guys but most of the guys I meet off Craigslist don’t seem to mind when a few cats hop on their backs during lovemaking.  Everybody likes a ride now and then! 

I sure hope I was able to clear up any misunderstandings. I am most definitely not a “crazy cat lady”. Now excuse me while I start my nightly ritual of singing “Milkshake” to Mr. Paws. It’s his favorite and he gets real bitchy if he has to wait.

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