Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Midnight Radio

There are 3 SuperLowBudge Radio shows on YouTube right now. More to come.

Please enjoy.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Recipe: A Very Good Vegetable Soup

"Baby, this soup is outstanding."

"There's a secret ingredient."


"...okay, TWO secret ingredients."

Michelle & Joe's 5th Annual HollyDaze

If you're "new" please message for the address.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Worrier Pose

Image: sent to me, don't know who drew this!

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Everything's Darker

Monday, November 14, 2016


The I Want You is playing Charlie's tonight.
Yeah but look at my husband's ass in them pants.

Oh, Nini...I get you, little pig

No Facebook for me, as of late, so what was the first thing I saw when I logged in today? Cynthia's post about her pet pig. Nini is a real life pig in the city! But she still forages. Will you look at the satisfied smile on that pig? Thought you'd all love this pig the way that I do. That'll do, Nini. That'll do.

Sept 29 Update:
I came back to tag "New York." Cynthia von Buhler is a gifted artist, writer and illustrator, and she produces and performs on various stages with bands and immersive theatre shows. 

If you have the means, by all means, do see/hear/experience something Cynthia.

Saturday, November 12, 2016


I figure I have more or less reached the age when it's time to contrib my version of the Tree of Life.
(Pastels on paper and digital paint)

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Reason #452

He's playing along to his favorite movie: Sixteen Candles.
I love him so much.
I can't believe I gave my panties to a geek.
I wish I were besties with Molly Ringwald just so I could text her and say "look what you did."

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

You guysz

I don beel so guh

Monday, November 7, 2016

Recipe: "Leftover" Chicken Pot Pie

This is only "leftover" chicken pot pie because I use the chicken soup from earlier in the week. 

This is a fast prep, and 45 minutes to bake. When you make a chicken soup, use ingredients that you think you'll like in a pot pie later. For example, I love to put a big bunch of spinach in my chicken soup, but if I'm planning on converting the leftover soup into a pot pie, then I won't add the spinach to the whole pot. I don't like spinach in a pot pie. So when you put the pot of leftover chicken soup in the fridge, know that you'll be converting that beauty into pot pie in a few days. It's kind of like you're cooking two meals at once.

Open Letter: The Night Before

Dear Friends,

I voted early. Tomorrow, November 8th, I've got sinus surgery to correct what's apparently been the root cause of my recurring troubles throughout my adult life, including sinus headache and ear infections. Put simply, I'm all jacked up in there. Since I'll be sleeping through the whole thing, that means that I won't be on hand all day for the election coverage. This is probably a gift to me, from the universe. So. Some thoughts on the eve of what will surely be an insane Tuesday.

First of all, I know I'm not the only one flat-out astonished that it's come to this. That Donald Trump ever became the actual real life Republican candidate. Do people understand the whole Trump...thing? I guess not. I guess just the fact of being on TV people? Maybe so, I mean parents are triggering new outbreaks of measles and mumps because some rando hair-do on TV told them to, so...USA! USA!

Look. I grew up in Connecticut, the part that's pretty close to New York. Here's the thing -- that part of Connecticut is a kind of woodsy enclave what they call a "bedroom community," meaning close enough to the city so people could drive or take the train. There, you talk about going into "the city" and doing some shopping. It's the Connecticut that roots for the Yankees (not the Sox), and we'd go to baseball games. Get some Italian ice in Little Italy, my parents saw a ton of Broadway shows and sometimes took us to Saturday matinees. I saw West Side Story with Rita Moreno as Anita. We listened to Howard Stern every morning before school. A lady named Liz Smith wrote a gossip column where "The Donald" and Ivana were always in her column for some glitzy reason or another. I'm saying this dude was around a lot, for us, and you know something? He was always a joke. There was never a time when Donald Trump represented anything smart, charming or admirable. He was this tacky society idiot that showed up on Howard Stern and tried to be funny. We cracked up, but if memory serves, Howard was just egging him on so we could all laugh at him.

New York in the 1980s: 
Howard Stern was a king. Donald Trump was a fool.

My working class family happened to be friendly with a number of rather affluent people. Very wealthy. Sprawling homes and land. They had homes in New York. They traveled the world, spoke several languages, played tennis and kept horses and that kind of thing. Lovely people who were nice to us, who seemed just comfortable and I guess what you might, today, call "woke." I have stories. But let me tell ya, I cannot recall knowing a single affluent person in my life that ever looked, sounded or acted like that crass, crude, blowhard Donald Trump. Money cannot buy grace. Dollars do not equal class. Plenty of people have money and gravitas. You can become obscenely rich without becoming obscene, but not that guy. And now he's running for President? How the f...?

And that is the primary problem that I have with Trump supporters. What exactly are they supporting? He doesn't know anything about anything. "He's a business man" is the top thing I hear these people say, and that is dumbest thing ever. First of all, what does that even mean? When I hear the "businessman" crowd cheering, I want to ask for a specific list of actual skills. Secondly, even if Trump were in possession of an outstanding business mind—he isn't, in fact it's well known that he's a straight-up crook—that quality does not meet the minimum requirements of the damn job. That's like saying your garbage man would make an excellent baker because he gets up early in the morning. There is no correlation.

Next problem I have with Trump supporters is more personal. You see, Hillary Clinton wasn't my favorite a year ago. I've got essays here in my blog that say as much. But over the past six months or so, I've done deeper digging, into her record, but truthfully, digging mostly into my own reasons for disliking her. I came up with dick. Nothing, zero. Just a vague feeling. So basically I was being ridiculous. I was an idiot.

You Don't Have To Feel Warm Fuzzies About Your Representatives

Without going too deep into a whole litany of findings, I'll just say that through a combination of research and contemplation, I'm all in for Hillary now. I'm with her. The fact is that she has been working her entire life since law school towards this day, and her record is stunning. Outstanding. More qualified a candidate, I don't think we have ever had, and I mean that sincerely. It isn't up for debate. Put her CV side by side with any other candidate. It's a fact -- she's the right person for right now. She might be the best POTUS we've ever had, flaws and all.

Finally, I want to make a point about the difference between conservatives and liberals. Being liberal means unconditional acceptance of, and empathy for, and if possible fellowship with people that aren't the exact same as you, thoughtful attention to preserving the planet's natural resources and limiting and repairing the impact of our our human footprint, and warmth and charity to shore up those less fortunate. That's the "liberal agenda." But this litany of hopes and dreams for the people of our country is what gets you the moniker "libtard." A brutal insult, and for what? For learning? For trying to be a decent person? I don't understand how it's bad to want everyone to be safe, educated, have enough food to eat, a home, clean water, clean does decency and equal rights and sharing become the evil thing, while people are applauding and supporting corrupt billionaires and politicians out for personal financial gain with no regard for anyone or anything? I guess if you, I'm sorry, I'm having a really hard time understanding, and I have tried and tried. I think that the reason these deplorable haters have been so far able to keep waving their signs and spewing just terrible, awful things is because "libtards" keep right on supporting their right to write those signs and say those things. We say hey, we may not agree with what you're saying, but we defend your right to say it. We say this even as they're calling us nasty libtard bitches. "Hang the bitch" and all the horrifying chants, and we're over here saying well, that's free speech. You know what? It's hate speech, actually. That's different. And I, for one, am done tolerating this hate. I retract my support. So I suppose I need to accept the label: I'm a libtard bitch, hi, how are you? Is it just me, or can I invite to go fuck themselves anyone who can't understand what's really going on here?

So, in sum, I'm pretty angry right now. Really, really angry. They've called me and my sisters nasty libtard bitches long enough now that, congrats Trumpers, you've summoned the seether, who is all in for Hillary, and I'm all done tolerating your ignorance, racism, misogyny and blind faith. Just so you know. That's where we're at, here. Because my bucket came up dry the last time I reached down for tolerance for the Trump fans, the 3rd party people, and the "anyone but Hillary" and "never Hillary" peanut gallery. This is important and you are blowing it. So say "Benghazi" or "emails" to me one more goddamn time, I fucking dare you.

Friends, good luck to you tomorrow. Good luck to me. Good luck to all of us,



Related: What Did I Miss?

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Michelle and the Very Odd Fellow

I approached his cab from behind, so I didn't get a good look at the driver. Given the unseasonably warm day, the driver's side window was down, so a friendly "hallooo, are you free, sir?" was enough to get a wave from a meaty hand attached to a hamhock of a forearm. I climbed into the back seat with my haul from Trader Joe's."Thanks! I over-bought. These bags are too heavy for walking home." I told the cab driver my address, just about two miles away, and he started the ignition and nosed the cab into Boston traffic.

He did not look into the rear-view mirror, he did not turn his head to check the blind spot. I did, reflexively. "We're good," I offered, though I got the distinct impression that he didn't care for my opinion on the matter. That's when I noticed that he couldn't turn his head more than a couple of inches. He was slumped in the driver's seat in an unnatural, off-kilter position with his bald head jutting forward, so it looked as though he'd leaned over to check the radio at some point and had stuck that way. He was a big fellow, in a big yellow polo shirt. All I could see from the back seat was yellow cotton-encased flab billowing into the center console, and that fleshy head the size of an overturned bucket seemingly fixed in place to look out the lower third of the front windshield. Scoliosis? Arthritis? Spina Bifida? I'd never seen someone drive a car in that position before. How odd. But whatever his ailment, he didn't seem to make it an issue, so no biggie. Homeward bound was I, with this very odd fellow at the helm, me in the back seat, hoping that he could see where he was going.

"Do you know how to get there?" I asked. Everyone knows my neighborhood, but it's thickly settled with a lot of one-way streets, so it never hurts to ask. He said that he knows the way, and added that he's been driving a cab for 20 years. Wonderful. But then he made a sudden turn, without signaling, in the completely opposite direction. Oh dear.

"Is this...a shortcut?" I asked. That's how you handle it when cab drivers go the wrong way, just in case they know something that you do not know, like a closed road ahead or construction. When he answered, I realized that he did not even remotely know where we were going at all, despite his confidence in turning that wheel and utterly despite my having just told him my street name very clearly. I asked "Is this...a shortcut?" He replied by saying the name of an entirely different street that is located way across town. He wasn't even close. I mean the street he said didn't sound even a little bit like what I'd just said. It was as though he'd made up, on the spot, where I lived without consulting me or something. So I repeated the name of my street louder, carefully enunciating. For good measure,  I spelled it, too. There was traffic, so it took a bit to get us turned around going the right way. Okay. That was quite odd. But maybe he can't hear very well, I reasoned. and figured that since he didn't see me, he can't read my lips.

No sooner did we get going the right way, the odd fellow told me that he did know a shortcut. Another sudden turn of the wheel, and then we were locked into taking, well, a longcut.

At This Point I Wanted To Say Some Shit

What I wanted to say: What the hell, man? You are terrible at this job. I've been in your cab for two minutes and you've already been wrong twice. Why don't I just direct you where to drive so we can end this whole thing quicker?

What I said: Nothing.

The radio was tuned to a talk show, the volume set very low. When he grunted in approval at something the radio host said, that's when I realized there was nothing wrong with this fellow's hearing. I recognized the radio host's voice. "Is that Howie Carr? Wow," I said. He said, "Yeah. Republican radio. Well, I call it Republican radio." I took a moment to ponder what he meant by "I call it..." since Howie Carr has been a nationally popular Republican radio host, columnist and author for decades.

What I wanted to say: Everyone calls it Republican radio. That's what it is. This is a Republican radio show that's on right now.

What I said: "I used to listen to Howie Carr every day on my commute. He's super-conservative, but he's also well-read, humorous and gives good radio. I haven't heard his show in years."

I left it at that. I could have said more. I did listen to Howie Carr during drive time for years, and I remember being entertained and sometimes even informed. But there were times I had to turn him off, for my own safety and that of other drivers, because he made me need both fists to be angry at the air with, plus some steering wheel pounding.

"I like this station," he said, then he called it the wrong call letters.

What I wanted to say: "No, this is WRKO."

What I said: Nothing.

"On weekends they have sixties music, oldies. I like that. You wouldn't think, on a Republican radio station, they'd play that music, but they do, I dunno why."

What I wanted to say: What the hell are you talking about? A listenership of old white people? That's the primary oldies demographic. "Oldies" is both what it is, and who it's for, at the same time.

What I said: "Well. Seems about right to me."

Now we were within sight of a big building and a car dealership. For some reason, he decided to inform me that New Balance owns that building, that dealership, and all of Braintree Street down from the Stop 'n Shop.

What I wanted to say: No, they do-fucking-not own that building. That building, and that dealership, have been owned by the Ciccolo family for decades. Two brothers run the whole thing. I have met them. And the new Braintree Street construction isn't New Balance, either. And the old building at the end near the Stop 'n Shop is owned by this lawyer whose office suite is on the 5th floor. I've been in his office dozens of times.

What I said: Nothing.

As he negotiated another left turn in our unnecessarily lengthy journey to my house, I guess he wanted some kudos. "Is this the fastest way you seen? Pretty good, huh?"

What I wanted to say: This is the dumbest route and you're an idiot.

What I said: "Well. Ya know. There are a number of ways to go. I gave up my car about 12 years ago, so I'm out of practice on the roads. Now my brain is rewired for walking and the bus."

He told me again that he's been driving a cab for twenty years. "Around here?" I asked. A less...confident...person would have heard the unspoken implication tacked to the end of that, to wit, "...because it doesn't seem like you know this area too well." But, quite sure of his rightness in all things, this fellow said, "Here, Roxbury, Dedham, all ovah." He asked if I remembered some business that had closed down about 15 years ago. I said no. He said, "What are you, about 65?"

What I wanted to say: "Are you fucking kidding me right now?"

What I said: "I'm 46."

"Oh," he said. "I figyid when you said you gave up yer cah you musta been in yer sixties." Since he can't turn around or look in the rearview, he hadn't seen me. I'm just a voice, to him.

What I wanted to say: That's quite a leap in logic. I have no car, so I'm 65? Is that the same Nothing that you use to reach all of your Nothing conclusions in Nowhere land?

What I said: "That's quite a leap in logic. I gave up my car because I no longer have to drive to work, I live in the city now, cars are expensive, it's hard to find parking here, and ultimately I don't need it. It had nothing at all to do with my age."

Howie Carr was still on the radio, introducing a guest, and the topic was, of course, the election. The very odd fellow said, "There is only one clear way to go. Trump can do no wrong, that's what I say."

What I wanted to say: Well, you could not be any more wrong.

What I said: "Well, you could not be any more wrong."

Because I'd had enough of this wrongness. This fellow was the wrongest person I had ever met, and my husband's parents think Paul Ryan is "an inspiration."

Finally, finally we reached my one-way street. I paid this very odd fellow who was blatantly, unequivocally wrong ten times within the span of a fifteen minute cab ride. I gathered my things in an awkward double-armful, and got the hell out of that cab. On the porch, I re-organized my bags to get a better grip for the climb upstairs. I dug out my keys, I got the mail out of the mailbox. As I stood on the stoop flipping through the envelopes, about to go inside, here comes the very odd fellow again, driving down my one-way street. He'd turned right, into another one way street that comes next after my street. Turning right is wrong. It just loops around.

"Guess I'm goin' the wrong way," he called out as he drove off. I still didn't get a very good look at him. Just the awkward lean of a sloping head, loose lobular ear flesh and a fleeting impression of close-set, droopy eyes.

I said to no one, "What an odd fellow." Yes. You are definitely going the wrong way. The wrongest possible way. Best of luck to you, sir.

Best of luck to all of us.∎

You may also like: Mass Transit 


Thursday, November 3, 2016

Throwback Thursday: 1994

I don't always "throw back" on Thursdays,
but when I do it's because I found a photo of Joe at 23.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Love My Committee Work. Hate The Bus.

I can never get back from my BU committee meeting in less than an hour and a half.
I hate the fucking bus. 

Currently Reading

Forged: Writing in the Name of God
it was amazing
tagged: currently-reading