Sunday, December 30, 2007

Happy New Year

And what a glorious year it's been too. If you haven't noticed, (and really why should you?), I've been on a bit of a vacation lately. Almost as long as the one I'm taking from work. I might go back for a couple of days next week, but not more than one if I can help it. And the only reason I'm doing that is to meet some arbitrary deadlines so that my supervisor's life will be easier, thereby making my life easier.

In the meantime, I've been occupying my time in a variety of ways, from making the kids quit playing XBox and going outside, (then getting on XBox for the next two hours myself), to getting the wife out without the kids for a dinner that does not involve pre-wrapped food, to staying up until 3 am and getting up at 11 am, (you get your 8 hours when you want them, and I'll get my 8 hours when I want them), to pestering the judiciary in states thousands of miles away from me to keep gay people from getting married, to growing sea-monkeys, to replacing dead fish with identical fish so my daughter doesn't know about the dead one, to dealing with a balky furnace, to having the following conversation with my son:

Son: "Dad, what's sex?"

Me: "About $100. Now go away, I can't watch the Cowboy game through you."

Alright, two of those things may have been somewhat exaggerated, like me even remotely giving a shit about what two consenting adults do with their relationships, and also my response when I was asked that question by my son this past week. My actual response was to take a deep breath and then, because his mother wasn't home, thereby preventing me from my preferred parental strategy known as "passing the buck", sitting him down and explaining what sex is. It's kind of awkward deciding on the fly what to include and what to leave in. I'm pretty sure a 9 year old can handle the whole "penis+vagina=baby" discussion, but I'm also almost positive he doesn't need to know what a rim-job is. Everything is else is kind of a grey area.

Oh, well, that's what the internet is for.

More regular posts to resume when I get back on a more regular schedule, including the resumption of our tour of Limpy's 50 states.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas

I sincerely hope that you all get what you want.


Thursday, December 20, 2007

It's Like Hannah Montana, Only If Hannah Swallowed

So we're taking a break from our trip through our 50 states, (plus maybe DC, Puerto Rico and/or Guam if I got really bored), to comment on the latest bit of schadenfreude, which is a word that a)I'm sure I misspelled but don't care, and b)means taking delight in the misfortune of others.

Jamie Lynn Spears, 16 and the sister of the very stable Britney Spears, is apparently knocked up. She's the star of a show my kids watch called "Zoey 101". She's Zoey. As I recall my school days, "101" was an introductory class where the basics of a subject were explained. Apparently "Zoey 101" could have done with spending a bit more time in "Biology 101". The news stories, (that I looked up after hearing about this on the news, and watching an episode of "Zoey 101" to see if there were any tell-tale signs, like "next week, on a very special Zoey 101, Zoey learns why she should have paid more attention to the lady putting the slimey rubber dohickey over the banana in that health class"), say that the father is her 19 year old boyfriend, who she met in church, and who now may be facing statutory rape charges, except they're going to move to Louisiana, where I believe it's OK for a 19 year old to knock up a 16 year old as long as they both consent to the sex and are the same species.

Obviously, 16 year old girls getting pregnant isn't really funny, but the news articles are priceless. They quote Jamie Lynn as saying that she and her boyfriend were really surprised that this could have happened. Yes, any time someone gets pregnant after having sex, it's a shocker dearie. This is what happens when you date naive people you meet in church. I met my wife in a bar and we had our first kid three years after we got married because we knew how to have sex and not get pregnant, and I don't mean anal either. While you can't get pregnant from that, good luck convincing your wife that's reason enough to go for it.

But the best part was Jamie's expressed desire to raise the kid in Louisiana, where she grew up, so the kid could have a "normal" life. Because that's worked out so well for the Spears sisters so far. At least they're rich.

So for now, I guess I'll have the kids just watch "Hannah Montana" at least until we get to the episode where Hannah does a bunch of Ecstasy and then bangs three roadies.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

No, You Don't Have Crabs, You're Just In Maryland

Chapter 4 in "Know Limpy's States"

Maryland was the 7th state admitted to the union, ratifying The Constitution on April 28, 1788, and putting to lie the expression "lucky #7".

The most fascinating fact about Maryland, to me anyway, and therefore by extension and unfortunately, you, is that the girl who took my virginity hailed from Maryland. It's a sordid tale, and you can find it here. No sense reliving that experience. Truly, a moment to be cherished and one to be forever thankful to "The Old Line State".

Because that indeed is the nickname for Maryland, "The Old Line State". One might reasonably expect that the nickname is derived from the perfectly straight northern border with Pennsylvania and the accompanying lack of imagination inherent to Marylanders, but you'd be wrong. Apparently the nickname is culled from George Washington's, (apparently he was important to the nation's early past; his name's all over this book), praise for the "troops of the line". Which actually rang a bell with me. As I recall from some of my history books on the Revolutionary War, a) we won, and b) in most battles everyone else would run away as soon as the British showed the slightest inclination towards forward movement, but the Maryland troops could be counted on to at least try to shoot a few redcoats before scuttling off like crabs. Apparently they were the bloodthristy psychopaths of the original colonies, and judging by my experience with their women, that trait hasn't disappeared.

The most well known geographic feature of Maryland is Chesapeake Bay, which pretty much takes up the center of the state. Well-known as a recreation area and the soruce of all those goddamn crabs Marylanders will shove down youur throat at the slightest excuse. the Chesapeake is widely loved state-wide, so much so that it is now so full of pig-shit run-off and so overfished that it's in danger of dying. But Marylanders are trying to save it, and they've got license plates to prove it. I, for one, hope they save the bay. That way I'll feel less guilty the next time I pee in Long Island Sound.

Maryland is also a leading exporter of wicked cool librarian/children's entertainer/song maker-uppers.

Maryland's state bird is the Northern (Baltimore) Oriole. I believe that the actual birds prefer it if you refer to them as "Northern Orioles", as there are very few species that would want to be associated with the hapless American League laughingstock, baseball's Baltimore Orioles.

The state flower is the black-eyed susan. There's a name that would never pass muster these days. The Preakness, the second of horse-racing's Triple Crown races, awards a wreath of black-eyed susans to the victorious horse, who then probably eats them. The Preakness is held somewhere in Maryland.

The highest point in Maryland is Backbone Mountain, towering 3,360 feet high along the border with West Virginia, and presumably heavily fortified to keep those hillbillies on their side of the mountain. It should not be confused with "Brokeback Mountain." But it probably is.

There are 5,508,909 people in Maryland. 638,614 of them live in the largest city, Baltimore. Which, if you believe the great HBO show "The Wire", has a population that drops by about two dozen a night. Great show, highly recommend it, but I've gotta believe the Baltimore Chamber of Commerce doesn't like it. I imagine the orioles just flap their wings, not realizing they share a name with a town nicknamed "Bodymore, Murderland"

IF YOU'RE IN MARYLAND YOU SHOULD: Apparently stay the hell out of Baltimore. If you're into the Civil War, and hey, who isn't, relive those golden days of yesteryear by strolling the fields at Antietam and ponder how exciting it must have been to be there during the dealiest battle of the deadliest war America's ever been involved in. So far. If you're a baseball fan, plan a trip for when your team is playing the Orioles. It's a guranteed win, and I'm told the area around the stadium is a lot of fun and reasonably safe, due in part to a police presence similar to the Green Zone in Baghdad. And don't even think of leaving the state without getting crabs. In fact, I know a girl...


MARYLAND'S FLAG LOOKS LIKE THIS: I just think Maryland has a cool flag. Other people think it looks like someone threw up on a tablecloth. Both arguments have merit.

LIMPY'S CONNECTION TO STATE: Other than the rather sordid connection noted above, not much. I have driven through it a couple of times, and I would like to hit Camden Yards, and I watch "The Wire". That's really it.

HAS LIMPY GOTTEN LAID IN THIS STATE: I've gotten laid because of this state, but never in it.

That concludes chapter 4. Tune in next time when we'll discuss Massachusetts, home of those goddamn Red Sox.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Maine: You Can't Get There From Here

Chapter 3 in "Know Limpy's States"

Before we describe Maine in all of its inbred glory, I want to mention that this series is based, (very, very loosely), on the National Geographic book "Our 50 States", by Mark H. Brockenhauer and Stephen F. Cunha, both of whom are surely fine, upstanding men who would be horrified to learn of their connection to this project. Their connection to these posts is primarily the order in which the states appear; that's why Connecticut came first and why we're sort of hopping all over the place. They have no sense of order. Also I get a few facts from them, but mostly I just make shit up or substitute my own opinions as "facts". I hope that clears that up.

At any rate, you can in fact get to Maine from here, wherever here happens to be. The people in Maine like to say "Yuh cahn't get theyah from heyah" however because virtually without exception they despise people from out-of-state, and would like you to leave as soon as possible, but only after you first buy some over-priced lobster-themed tkotcke from them. And after all, if they tell you how to get where you want to go, like say, Vermont, the odds are you won't buy it from them. They may hate foreigners, (i.e., residents of Canada or any of the other 49 states), but those Maine Yankees are damn shrewed business people.

Maine got a late start on things, probably because no one thought to go up to that godforsaken wilderness and ask, and was the 23rd state admitted to the union, entering on March 15, 1820. Maine was actually admitted to the union as part of the infamous Missouri Compromise of 1820, (coincidentally), in which Missouri entered the union as a slave state but Maine was admitted as a free state to keep things in balance. The fact that people were actually living in Missouri, while Maine was principally populated by semi-literate fur trappers who were on their way to Quebec seems to have escaped Congressional notice, thereby inevitably leading to the Civil War battle-cry "Remember The Maine!"

Maine is known as "The Pine Tree" state, based on its primary source of income, the continual rape of virgin forests to make toilet paper. Lately, however, the paper companies have been selling "huge tracts of land", (ten points extra credit for getting that reference), to private owners, thereby increasing the chance the Maine will soon be known as "The Get-The-Fuck-Off-My-Property" state.

Maine's state bird is the chickadee, which is an even bigger pussy than the robin. Seriously, this is a state with loons, hawks, eagles and herons and they picked the chickadee???

The state flower is apparently a "white pine cone and tassel", which I think technically is actually a tree seed. But horticulture isn't my strong point. I'm not sure anything else grows in Maine anyway, besides potatoes, and those are technically tubers and not flowers.

The highest point in Maine is Mt. Katahdin, clocking it at an impressive 5,268 feet abvove sea level. It also rises out of a fairly low elevation, so you'll be climbing most of those feet. I have made this climb, taking the steepest trail up, The Cathedral, because my father thought "it would be more of a challenge". Dad clearly forgot to factor in that he was climbing with two idiots, as both my brother and I went off the trail and nearly plunged 2,000 feet to what is really a very attractive Chimney Pond. Mt. Katadhin is located in Baxter Park, which I highly recommend backpacking through.

There are 1,305,728 people living in Maine. 1,305,000 of them live along the coast. There's a lot of room in the middle, and as a result some people fuck trees.

IF YOU'RE IN MAINE YOU SHOULD: Try the lobster. It's usually fairly fresh. Just don't pull up any of the colored buoys in the water to look at them. This ain't the supermarket, it ain't "pick your own lobster", and you will get shot. And no Maine jury will convict the lobsterman. If you get lost and wind up way up the coast in a town called Machias, try the scallop stew at a restaurant called Helen's. Get a side order of onion rings, which are probably the best rings I've ever head, and fuck the diet and get the strawberry pie for dessert. Get the whole pie too, you pussy, you can bring the leftovers home. Then say good-bye to an artery or two, but it's so worth it.



LIMPY'S CONNECTION TO STATE: Moderate-to-high. I've done a fair amount of hiking through The Pine Tree State, and I can attest that they do indeed have a lot of pine trees. My family also took a yearly vacation to Beals Island, which is way the hell up the coast and very closeto "can't get there from here" status. In college my favorite ex-girlfriend was from Maine. Very attarctive blonde who chewed tobacco and worked construction in the summer.

HAS LIMPY GOTTEN LAID IN THIS STATE: Surprisingly, no. Not even with a tree. I never did go to Maine with the girl, although I met her father once when he came to visit. He was roughly the size of your average black bear and could have pulled my arms off without breaking a sweat. For that matter, she probably could have as well. My brother did get a blow-job from a former "Miss Something or Other" during our last vacation up there, so I'm counting that as half credit.

Next up is Maryland and perhaps another boring story of how I lost my virginity.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Turn Around, You've Just Missed Delaware!

Chapter 2 in "Know Limpy's States"

Delaware was the first state admitted to the union, ratifying the Constitution on December 7, 1787, which means two days ago was the 220th anniversary of the start of the United States of America. I celebrated by working late. The people of Delaware more than likely celebrated by getting drunk and yelling about how "we were the first state" this and "Delaware ratified the Constitution first" that, just like they're required by law to do every week anyway. Smug-ass Delawarians.

The chief fascinating fact about Delaware is that it's gone from being the first state to being a wholly-owned subsidiary of DuPont Co., a company primarily known for blowing shit up, something that comes in handy when you share a border with New Jersey. Picking up on this fact, many other companies have taken advantage of Delaware's corporate-friendly atmosphere to register as being based in Delaware, even if their only physical presence is an agent for service and a PO Box. Spend any amount of time in law school studying corporate transactions and you'll hear plenty about Delaware. If you're lucky, four years later you won't remember a goddamn thing about it. I think corporations are allowed to rape and pillage the area around their PO boxes every other Tuesday, but I may be mixing that up with the movie "Meatballs"

The state bird of Delaware is the Blue Hen Chicken. Which, when you think about it, is really, really gay. They also named the sports teams for the University of Delaware the "Blue Hens", leading to a massive inferiority complex before games even start. Actually, according to the book ("Our Fifty States", from National Geographic), the name in truth derives from a company of Revolutionary War Delaware soldiers who amused themselves by staging cockfights with blue hen chickens. The name is supposed to demonstrate fighting spirit, rather than a bunch of assholes with nothing better to do than molest poultry when they should've been fighting the British.

The state flower is the peach blossom. Delaware being known for its peaches and all.

The highest point in Delaware is an unnammed spot towering 448 feet above sea-level! I'm pretty sure I top that when I walk upstairs at night. There is a group of people who try to reach the highest points in all 50 states. I would imagine this is one knocked off while having lunch between New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

There are 817,491 people in Delaware.

IF YOU'RE IN DELAWARE YOU SHOULD: Ask someone who lives there what they do for fun. The book says Delaware has nice beaches and is a leader in conservation. Of course, one of it's shoreline wildlife refuges is bracketed by Slaughter Beach and Broadkill Beach, so it seems like there's a good chance you'll meet a guy in a hockey mask and wielding a machete if you do hit the beach.


LIMPY'S CONNECTION TO STATE: Slim to none. I've driven/ridden shotgun through it, both ways, twice, going to a softball tournament in Virginia. Granted we were cutting out the northern half, but "blink and you missed it" doesn't seem much of an exaggeration in Delaware. I will say that the local state troopers were nothing but polite when giving my friend Julie her speeding ticket after she blew through a speed trap at about 85.


That concludes Chapter 2 of "Know Limpy's States" Next up is the pride of the downeast, Maine. What are the odds I'll mention lobster?

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Listen Up Fuckers!!!

I've been running low on things to write about here, and I've been putting out what I consider to be half-assed entries just to sort of fill space and keep Tysgirl from slapping me, and not in a good way. Well, that's going to have to stop. So I'm starting what I hope to be a regular feature that should take up the next, uh, well, at least 47 entries.

It's called "Know Limpy's States" and will be based on all of the states in the country and my relationship to each one of them. Sound like a lame-ass idea? You bet it does, but I don't care. I can't think of anything else and someone we know just gave me a big glossy book about the states, and that gave me an idea and that means you're screwed.

Or you could just go read Soozie's blog, except she's quitting, so you're really kind of stuck. Plus I'll post nude pictures in some of 'em.

Anyway, to kick this feature off, we start with, well, whatever the hell one is first in this book, let's see here,

Connecticut? Really? Whay the hell would anyone start a book about the states with Connecticut? Oh well here we go.


Chapter 1 of 46 in "Know Limpy's States"

Connecticut is the 5th state in the union, attaining statehood on January 9, 1788, a date now routinely ignored statewide. The capital is Hartford, a city widely known to be devoid of almost any nightlife that does not involve the active exchange of gun-fire. The current governor is M. Jodi Rell, who succeeded the former governor, John G. Rowland, after he got 9 months in the federal penitentiary for corruption. The largest city is Bridgeport, at just over 140,000, at least 127,568 of whom wish they lived anywhere but Bridgeport, a city in a state of almost constant "urban renewal", none of which, unfortunately, involves napalm. Bridegport's current mayor hasn't been sworn in yet, since he's being sued by the guy who lost the primary, said guy being in his 30's and living with his mother, the last mayor not running for re-election after, among other things, admitting to using cocaine while in office, (although if I were mayor of Bridgeport, I'd be mainlining heroin at the inaugeration), and that mayor having taken over from the previous mayor after he got 9 years in the slammer for corruption.

The state bird is the robin. As far as I know none of them have ever been arrested for corruption.

The state flower is the mountain laurel. Every year in June I hike up Bear Montain to try to catch the laurel at its peak, because it is a beautiful sight and because I am a huge homo. Most years I miss the peak. The one year I caught it made up for it.

There are just under 3.5 million people in Connecticut. Most spend their time complaining that there is nothing to do and how much cooler New York and Massachusetts are.

Connecticut is generally in the top two in the "richest state" category, depending on how well the mob is doing in New Jersey at any given moment. Most of that money is based in Fairfield County, and most of that money is in a town called Greenwich, which is mostly populated by incredibly rich assholes who declare a state of emergency whenever the Powerball lottery gets really big and the town has to deal with Negroes from nearby New York, (hey look, racist alliteration), who cross state lines and then stand in lines outside Greenwich stpres to try to buy lottery tickets so that they can someday live in town and bitch about people just like them. That actually happened a few years ago. Powerball went over $200 milion and New York didn't have it, so folks from NY came over the border in droves to buy tickets. Greenwich called out the cops to maintain order and actually asked the legislature for money based on a "state of emergency". I believe they actually got some.

The highest mountain in CT in Bear Mt., at something over 2,100 feet. But the highest point in CT is on Mt. Frissell, the peak of which is actually in Massachusetts. The state line is on the shoulder of the peak, so the highest point in CT isn't even a mountain top, but a spot on a hill "marked" by a rusty metal pole and from which there is no view. God we suck.

Connecticut is called both "The Constitution State" because it was once governed by something called "The Fundamental Orders, which later served as the model for the US Constitution, and "The Nutmeg State", because, well, no one really knows why, but it may have something to do with CT merchants being infamous for cheating in the nutmeg trade.

IF YOU'RE IN CONNECTICUT YOU SHOULD: Check your ticket to see what time your connecting flight leaves. If you're here, God help you, on purpose, you should check out:

Pepe's Pizza in New Haven. The white clam pizza is incredible, and I'm not just saying that because it sounds sort of obscene. New Haven is also home to Yale University and wandering around the downtown area is a lot of fun. Wandering around outside the downtown area is a really bad idea.


LIMPY'S CONNECTION TO STATE: Huge. Couldn't be huger. Born and bred in CT. Educated in CT, mostly because all of the out of state schools rejected me, except two that wait-listed me and one that said I could go but then sent us a tuition bill that looked like a budget for a eastern european country. So I went to UCONN, which at the time was easier to get into than Britney Spears' pants after a narco-lollipop bender, and about as cheap. Now, thanks to the basketball teams winning about 8 national championships between them, UCONN is neither cheap nor easy to get into.


That sums up Connecticut for now. Tune in next time when we discuss Limpy's connection to the alleged state of Delaware.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

It's Like My First Dance, But With Rythm