Monday, July 25, 2011

If The Cops Show Up It's A Good Party

Never let a biker's girlfriend tend bar. That's the take-home lesson I learned this weekend.

We had our annual summer lawn party on Saturday. About 35 or 40 guests, friends, family. It was a "luau" theme and there were weeks of preparation. Rented tables and chairs, hired a band, invited neighbors so they would not call the cops (someone across the valley did, anyway, but the band turned it down a bit and we weren't bothered after that), put tiki torches around the yard, set up small charcoal hibachis on tables and provided skewered meats and veggies for folk to cook. Guests were encouraged to wear their tackiest luau outfits. Some were very tacky. I chose "Creepy Old Guy Who Thinks He Is Much Younger Than He Really Is" for my costume. I think I pulled it off very well.
That creepy old Jack Elliott with two daughters-in-law.
Reid of Dump City Dumplings setting up to provide
appetizers, behind. 

I bought wine (three bottles each of two reds, two rosé's, and two whites), and a pony keg of Trumer Pils beer. Also the makings for Mai Tai's: rums, orgeat, Triple Sec, simple syrup, limes, cocktail straws and umbrellas.

We hired a bartender with an OLCC permit to do the mixing and pouring. While setting up I learned that her boyfriend was a Harley biker dude without a job. Her income pays for him and his bike. This is something I never quite get about women, why some find that life so attractive. Just look at the men and women in a biker bar and you are looking at your future--but hey her life and all that.

She mixed up the first trial Mai Tai and gave it to me to approve. It was tasty.

Shortly into the party the bartender announced that we were running out of rum. A neighbor volunteered to made a rum run.

Now, I don't normally make or consume cocktails and had figured that 1.5 liters of golden rum and 750 ml of dark rum would be sufficient for this group, that most people would drink wine or beer. Alarm bells should have been going off at this point.

But instead I had a couple glasses of wine, another Mai Tai or two, was barbecuing a skewer of shrimp when the world came crashing down on me. I was plastered and it was all I could do to get upstairs and fall onto the bed, humiliated. That would have been around 8 pm.

I missed the entire second half of the party. I woke up at dawn, feeling pretty miserable, not just physically, but mentally: I was ashamed and angry with myself. We worked so hard on this party and I passed out halfway through.

I reviewed how much I remembered drinking and it just wasn't enough to explain what happened to me. But I did drink on an empty stomach and I was certain that was what I had done wrong.

Mrs Elliott with same two daughters-in-law.
Fortunately, when an exhausted but happy Mrs Elliott got up she said that everyone had a great time, the band had folk up and dancing, and that I wasn't the only one who got pretty drunk. Several people had to be sent home in cabs.

So this morning I got an email from Paul (the Computer Guy) Spencer and he tells me that he saw the bartender pour at least six shots of rum into a Mai Tai and hand it to an unsuspecting guest.

So -- two things that don't mix well:

1. Empty stomach, and
2. Mai Tai's mixed by a biker's girlfriend. 

Next party--and there will be a next party and I plan to be there the whole time--there will be a discussion with the bartender about how much booze to put in the drinks.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Hey I Got Rope

I was camping last week at a sweet spot near Twin Lakes Resort. I decided to clean out my rope bag.
Big rope, little rope. Lots of colorful rope!

After some consideration, I decided to get rid of the cheap blue rope with the yellow and red checks. The others I kept.

I like rope.

The weather was variable. This shot was taken on Friday afternoon:

My decorative camping flags were blowing in the onshore breeze. That's a waterproof waxed cotton canvas tarp covering some of my gear in the foreground. Not a body.

I gathered up several sharpened sticks I found in the campsite and leaned them against the tree. Maybe the previous occupants were expecting trouble.

My son joined me on Saturday. He brought his little dog, Peanut.

Jim liked the retro look of this photo.

Here's Jim's Jeep. He's very proud of it.

I have heard that some are satisfied eating beans out of cans when camping. I do not belong to that school.
Shrimp Kabobs. Picture's a little fuzzy, was working under low light. 

Mrs Elliott has started to express interest in going on a camping trip or two . . . I think I can manage another trip. Or two.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Pizza Mondo is apparently the Heart of Bend

I asked Google Maps to chart a course from here ("Bend, OR") to the Vandervert exit off the 97 below Sunriver.

It started the route from Pizza Mondo.

I'm cool with Pizza Mondo being the default center of Bend. Anyone got a problem with that?

Yeah, I'm a Simpleton

My Stupidity Index usually surpasses my Competence Index.

Earlier this week, the household sink's garbage disposer packed up. Sounded like it had chewed a piece of metal, and it would not budge.

"It's a goner," I said, with male confidence. Purchased a new disposer from Home Depot (who are very nice to their employees) and brought it home. Fancy piece, 3/4 hp, over $200. Well-reviewed on Consumer Reports.

Plumber guy came over, peered into the thing's maw with a flashlight, probed into it with a magnetic retriever and fished out a screw. A #8 X 1/2'' pan Phillips sheet metal screw with a black finish.

"Well, there's your problem," he said. Fired up the disposer which ran as sweetly as a $12,000 record turntable on air bearings.

Mrs Elliott looked at me. I felt somewhat cretinish.

I have no idea where that screw came from, or how it got close enough to the kitchen sink to fall in. But I am 99 and 44/100ths sure that the screw wasn't part of the disposer. And I suspect that it came from me. I mean, how many women typically wander about with loose #8 X 1/2'' pan Phillips sheet metal screws in standard steel with a (could have been oil or wax) black finish?

I did it and I are a nitwit.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Garden's Wrapped Up So Pet Parade and Freedom Ride Snapshots

The final work on the garden wrapped up on Saturday: colorful annuals planted, mulch spread, final drip irrigation emitters installed. A job well done and it looks swell.

So we went to the Pet Parade then the Freedom Ride. Four random shots, two from the parade, and two of Mrs Elliott and me waiting for the Freedom Ride to get underway:

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