Balinese Eats that Will (Probably) Not Result in a Spider Body Possession

17 Oct Babi guling

When I came across this article about Bali, I had to click on it, even though I knew I didn’t really have the “stomach” to do so. (PUN INTENDED) Also: (Heads up: the article I’m referring to involves an Australian tourist and stomach-burrowing tropical spiders. Soooo….yeah. Nothing fun there.)

You see, we went to Bali a few months ago. Actually, we went to Bali exactly two weeks after this event and stayed in the exact same hotel. (Heads up: the article I’m now referring to involves a daughter and her boyfriend murdering her socialite mother and stuffing her in a suitcase. You’ve been warned.)

Anyway, the coincidence of that event and our trip timing was incredibly creepy and weird. Creepy because, well, there had just recently been a murder in what I would positively call the least murder-y type place ever. I mean, seriously, the St. Regis in Bali is amazing. Wonderful. Tranquil. Everything and everyone is peaceful and cheerful and willing to help you with absolutely anything. If you even mentioned, for example, that you liked a particular fruit, that fruit would then appear every damn day nestled in a beautiful wooden bowl, just especially for you.

St. Regis beach

See? Totally peaceful and gorgeous. Not at all murder-y.

Weird because we spent a good part of everyday wondering if any of the staff we were encountering had known or waited on the victim and her murderers. When we saw a sign in the lobby about the area being monitored by cameras, we wondered if those signs were new or if they had been there the whole time. We suspiciously eyed every single heavy decorative object in our bungalow as a potential bludgeoning device. It was all very at odds with a vacation mentality.

Anyway, I’ll talk about the St. Regis in Bali a bit more in another post. Well, probably a lot more, since staying there was one of the best vacation experiences we’ve ever had (We flew a kite! We released a sea turtle! These are not euphemisms! These are legitimate activities we participated in!).

But for today, let’s just explore some of Bali’s best eats in pictures and be glad that no one got invaded by tropical spiders. Also, no giardia, so nothing but unicorns and rainbows as far as I’m concerned.

drinks and sambal

Sambal – This is the first thing we ate in Bali. It was served in a small dish next to these amazing peanut crackers. Sambal is sauce typically made from a variety of chili peppers and secondary ingredients such as shrimp paste, fish sauce, garlic, ginger, shallot, scallion, sugar, lime juice, and rice vinegar or other vinegars.

Nasi Goreng – I had this for brunch one morning at the St. Regis in Nusa Dua. It’s a fried rice dish, with shrimp crackers and sliced up omelet, and a side condiment of spicy red paste.

bubur ayem

Photo not mine. I was…well, you know. Click on photo for link/credit.

Bubur ayam – This was another St. Regis brunch special. It was like congee – a non-sweet porridge, with shredded chicken, green onions, sambal and eggs, I think. It was ok, not my favorite.

Satay – The Balinese love their satay. It’s exactly what you think it is: skewers of grilled meat slathered in a peanut sauce. We even ate these on the dive boat lunch (along with a variation of nasi goring).

Babi guling

Babi guling – The Balinese national dish: roasted whole pig. I really wanted to try this, but never got to. We hired a driver to take us around the island one day and he had his own agenda. When I asked about getting babi guling, he said the place he goes to was too far out of the way. Meanwhile, we must have passed about 50 roadside places specializing in babi guling over the course of the next eight hours. I really should have been more insistent. Especially in light of our own Porktober event.

pomelo salad

Rujak jeruk bali – Pomelo salad. Actually, I’m not sure this is a Balinese dish per se. I think it’s Thai. But we fell for it hard. We had it at breakfast and it came in these little glass jars at the W Hotel in Seminyak. A pomelo is like a grapefruit on steroids, and it’s cut up and combined with cilantro, peanuts, green beans, carrots. So refreshing and not unlike green papaya salad, only more citrus-y.

snakeskin fruit

Salak – Snakeskin fruit. It is indigenous to Bali and is related to the palm tree, somehow. It had an easy to peel, flaky outerskin. The inside fruit was segmented, and had a firm flesh similar to an apple, and a small dark pit in each segment. In fact, it tasted a lot like a cross between an apple and a pear, but much neater (less juicy). We loved them and ate a ton of them. Our butler at the St. Regis made sure we were well stocked.

Rambutan - the hairy, scary Balinese fruit

Again, not my photo. Click on image for link.

Rambutan – This hairy, scary-looking fruit was in our fruit bowl, but we didn’t even attempt to eat it.

Bitang - Balinese beer

This one, totally is my picture. Amazingly.

Bitang – Balinese beer. Nuff said.

There was one other dish that I ate twice and loudly declared them to be the best I’d ever had: nachos at the St. Regis. Usually at lunch, by our pool, after drinking many Bitangs and/or glasses of wine. At first, we ordered them out of morbid curiosity, certain that there was no way they’d be any good. But they were. They were delicious. Then I had to order them a second time, just to make sure. They had shredded chicken and a cheese sauce made out of béchamel and they were actually really, really good. I guess sometimes a girl just wants a taste of home.

St. Regis nachos. The. Best.

Amazingly, I stopped shoving these into my mouth long enough to take a picture. Note glass of rose in the background.

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Reality TV Time: Euros of Hollywood

14 Oct

During the last year that this blog has been dormant (almost one year to the day!), I’ve been on some fabulous trips that I have just been dying to talk/write about. I can’t tell you, gentle reader, how many times I’ve been witness to something and thought: Man, this would be great for the blog.

For example, we went to South Africa in March (with a super sketchy layover in Nigeria that I cannot wait to tell y’all about), spent a long weekend in Copenhagen (where I discovered my love for open-faced sandwiches – genius. Pure genius), revisited Costa Rica, and most recently, we went to Bali, where we worked extra hard to avoid all references to “Eat, Pray, Love” (spoiler alert: we failed).

In fact, I was working on an oh-so-clever Bali post when I saw the most amazing thing ever: Euros of Hollywood.

Meet the Euros: Bleona, where are your pants?

Meet the Euros: Bleona, where are your pants?

“Euros” (which I’ll call them for short) are on a new reality show on that most amazing of networks, Bravo. I swear, that Andy Cohen is a national treasure and no one can convince me otherwise. He should get a Nobel Prize just for his general programming greatness.

“Euros” is like that other great Bravo delicacy, “Ladies of London” but in reverse. “LoL” followed the lives of a mixed group of women comprised of Americans and Brits, so it had just a touch of that “fish-out-of-water” storyline that folks find amusing but then it also had the added fabulousness of the reserved Brits reacting to the American “fish.”

But “Euros” is all in on the fish-out-of-water storyline. And unlike the Americans on “Ladies of London,” these Euros haven’t even the slightest interest in fitting into their new pond. In fact, they seem quite determined to make America conform to their Euro-standards.

We start the show by meeting Bleona, an Albanian pop superstar with a name that sounds like an over-the-counter diuretic. Looks wise, she resembles Angelina Jolie. But then she opens her mouth and it’s more like Nene Leakes. She’s brash, loud, diva-esque, rude, opinionated, and sees slights where none exist. I, of course, love her, and want to sit and chat over a plate of sheqerpare cookies, and be her very best friend in the whole wide world. She’s gorgeous and she’s crazy and I’m pretty sure we’ll be seeing her in Playboy very, very soon.

Bleona being choked by net neck brace.

Bleona at 2012 Billboard Music Awards. Also: WHAT IS THAT AROUND HER NECK? I think she’s being attached by a tulle caterpillar.

Unfortunately, there is trouble brewing in Euroland because Bleona isn’t the only chantreuse in the cast. A little later on, we meet Fawni, a boobilicious blonde Austrian who has had a number one single in Japan, which, as we all well know, is practically a gateway to American pop chart greatness. Fawni, however, has informed us that she’s in America to be a great painter, and Bravo kindly shows us a few of her paintings. They’re…..ok, I guess. OK fine, they’re not horrible….but since I’m firmly on Team Bleona, maybe I’m a bit biased. I will say that they’re definitely much darker than you might expect from an Austrian Barbie doll. Although, there is the ubiquitous Marilyn Monroe tribute piece.

Aaaandd, I love that Fawni’s Bravo page says “Sorry, nothing here yet.” Indeed.

Fawni with one of her paintings. Also: WHERE IS HER ARM??

Fawni with one of her paintings. Also: WHERE IS HER ARM??

We also meet Sascha, a German entrepreneur/DJ/music producer who owns what appears to be a very successful clothing store in LA (where I presume all the Euros get their too-tight, deep v-neck t-shirts, button up shirts that start around the navel, elaborately embroidered skin-tight jeans, and unisex scarves). And yet, Sascha’s wife and two children are still in Germany and he only sees them every couple of months. Now, listen, I know that the United States has a somewhat difficult immigration system. Believe me, I KNOW. Eight years of writing for the nation’s largest lobbying organization in Washington D.C. gave me a lot of familiarity with the difficult politics of this issue. But I find it hard to believe that with all his money and having himself established as a business man in LA, Sascha can’t find a way to bring his family over. Maybe he could hire a lawyer or something to help get the wheels in motion? I hope we hear more about this issue during the season. If for no other reason than the fact that I always like to cram pop cultural references into the otherwise-dull policy debates when I can.

Speaking of unisex scarves, I absolutely cannot finish this post without introducing you to Massimo, a holder of several “slashes” – model/actor/choreographer from Italy. Massimo’s biggest credit so far appears to be in a movie titled “We Have a Pope,” which is a horrible title but an interesting premise: “A story centered on the relationship between the newly elected pope and his therapist.” Wonder if that’s On Demand somewhere. Somehow, I doubt it.

If, by some miracle you are able to resist watching all these other over-the-top wannabes trying to get a foothold in one of the most difficult industry towns in the world, you have to at the very least watch Massimo attempt an American accent. It’s pretty bad. But I have a feeling I’m going to be cheering for his success before the end of the season.

Not in the field of choreography, however. He’s really, really awful. He’s like a cross between a Muppet and someone who is dizzy from thrashing about in the final stages of a debilitating illness.

Massimo in the throws of acting. Is that a popped collar underneath a deep v-neck t-shirt? Get ready America.

Massimo in the throws of acting. Is that a popped collar underneath a deep v-neck t-shirt? Get ready America.

When Life Hands You Lemons, Use Them as Weapons

9 Oct

At work a few weeks back, we did this exercise to kick off a brainstorming session <insert eyeroll>.

We were supposed to visualize a lemon, and then write on a piece of paper all the things that you could do with a lemon.

My new boss, Tina, filled her whole page with very practical, Hints from Heloise type stuff: “use the juice to clean windows,” “use the rind on a stinky garbage disposal,” “use it to lighten your hair in the sun.”

My old boss, Kevin, also filled his whole page, but he took a more philosophical approach, suggesting that you use the seeds to grow more trees, and more lemons.

I wrote down four things:

  1. Throw it at coworkers who make you sit through brainstorming sessions.
  2. Use it as a sidekick for a nice, frosty glass of sweet ice tea.
  3. Make a tiny, bitter jack-o-lantern.
  4. Squeeze the juice in someone’s eye and rob them.

I guess the invisible ink was already on the lemon juice-splashed wall.

My employer and I have consciously uncoupled. We’ve agreed to disagree, go our separate ways, and see other people.

I’m starting a new chapter. I’m available for freelance gigs. My resume and writing samples are available on this blog. And if anyone is looking for an experienced, hard-working, smart, funny, and yes, slightly warped writer/editor/digital storyteller who may or may not have a weird violent streak, drop me a line at thepoelog (at) gmail (dot) com.

Just don’t try to pay me in lemons.

Friday Links: Shutdown Protest Edition

11 Oct

So let’s just have a little quick recap of this week, shall we? My sweet love petal XFE is out of town and my insomnia is in full force. I showed up a week early for a dental cleaning (they declined my offer to go ahead and just do it. They also didn’t appreciate it when I pointed out that since they charge me when I miss an appointment without calling, they should reward me the same amount when I show up for really, really early for appointments. )

The huge mirror over the sink in my bathroom decided it didn’t like my outfit and completely jumped off the wall (the wire holding it broke), cracking the left corner and ruining it.

I left my keys in the door overnight and had to force myself to be Secret Agent Ninja Poe the next morning looking for would-be murderers/rapists/robbers/cat hostage takers.

I finally broke down and got a work-issued phone that is about sixteen generations more advanced than my personal phone (the iLuddite, as one co-worker dubbed it) and has me totally confounded (where is the “dismiss appointment reminder button!”)

And, finally, it rained approximately 160 of the last 168 hours.

Let’s see what was on the Web this week.

Matthew Broderick Does Triple Daddy Duty School Run

  • I agree with ol’Tabitha or Marion or whatever Broderick up there. Fall sucks and leaves are mean.
  • It may seem kinda lame to say, but this risotto from Trader Joe’s was the highlight of my week.  Lick-your-bowl phenomenal. It’s made with spelt. Spelt! I’m not even sure what that is! But I suspect it’s healthy! And nutritious!
  • I finished this book, about reclusive copper heiress Huguette Clark and her fortune and the subsequent fight over that fortune, and yes, her empty mansions. Pretty sure ol’Huguette left the keys in the door, metaphorically speaking. It’s a good  (ie: odd) story, if a little short on action. OK, a lot short on action.
  • I stayed up way too late the other night watching this HBO documentary on the murder of an openly gay teen by a classmate. Valentine Road is heartbreaking, in part because of all the ignorant, homophobic adults saying horrible things about the victim. It got me pretty fired up.
  • Perfection: Jimmy Fallon helps perform What Does the Fox Say?
  • Man, I hope I never drive XFE to fake his own kidnapping in order to get some guilt-free party time away from me. My favorite quote from the Hidalgo County Sheriff: “”Well, he’s going to party in jail now.”
  • Do you know who or what an Absu is? IKEA or Death is an online game that challenges you to correctly label words as either an IKEA product or a death metal band. Even better, the game was created by a marketing agency.
  • Speaking of clever marketing agencies, this mobile ad firm Revolution Marketing has campaign called Drunk Dial Congress. Drunkdialcongress.org connects citizens fed up with the government shutdown to members of the House of Representatives.
  • Listen, I grew up around truckers, literally less than half a mile down the road from an actual truck stop. Hell, my mom even married a few of them. But truckers hijacking the roads around DC to protest congressional inaction is just not a good idea. Your cause may be noble (or, more probably, misguided), but you’re method would just punish the innocent citizens of this swampland. We’ve been through enough lately.

Maybe I Should Play the Lottery Next

10 Oct

Sometimes you do something so stupid and potentially dangerous it puts a pit in your stomach and lingers around you for a whole day.

I-SEE-DUMB-PEOPLE

I’m not talking about something irresponsible, like, say, for example, staying far too long at a happy hour and not eating anything except a couple of chips and a teaspoon of guacamole, which, as everyone knows is not a sufficient anti-hangover base for 3 top shelf margaritas and a sickly sweet shot. Just as an example.

No, I’m talking about some stupid mistake that makes you question whether you should even be allowed to walk by yourself to the metro.

And every time you start to feel comfortable or safe or push the incident out of your mind, there it is again, sending a cold sheen of sweat over your upper lip.

My guardian-boyfriend XFE is out of town for work this week, so of course, when I went to bed last night, I checked every door and window and made absolutely certain they were locked before I went to bed.

I have recurring bouts of insomnia. I’m currently in one of those bouts, I’d say for going on about 2 weeks now. My insomnia is kinda interesting. To me, at least. I fall asleep easily, then wake up around 3 or 4 in the morning and cannot get back to sleep until about 20 minutes before my alarm goes off. So….super restful, that. If there’s anything worse than waking up for no reason, it’s finally being able to drift back to sleep only to be jolted awake again. It is exhausting, and frustrating, and mystifying.

So, last night, per usual, I woke up around 4 am and tried to lie still in the hopes that I could somehow quiet my mind enough to get back to sleep. I finally started to slowly sink back into sleep after an indeterminate amount of time when I heard the very distinct sound of our front door. Our door has a pretty unmistakable sound. It has a rubber weathering seal around it that makes it sound a little bit like a suction noise. That’s the best way I can describe it, and it’s totally inefficient.

apocalypse bird

Anyway, I know I heard something because even Petunia jumped up from her favorite sleeping spot — ie: between my legs (I also have a theory that perhaps my insomnia stems from the fact that I am physically trapped by a 13 pound cat and can’t roll over to a more comfortable position — I have a lot of theories about my insomnia. You think a lot during those extra 2-3 hours of wakefulness every night).

what was that

I stayed very, very still, holding my breathe and listening; watching the cat to see if she was hearing anything. Nothing. No footsteps on the wood floor. No sound of the door closing. It must have been our collective imaginations. Time to get up and get the day going.

I went through my normal morning routine – brew coffee, feed the cat, pet the cat while she eats, pour cup of coffee plus to-go mug, pet the cat while she eats some more, escape the cat-petting session and get showered and dressed.

Finally, it was time to leave. I open the door and hear the distinct tinkle of my keys still in the lock of the front door, left there from the evening before. Just hanging there vulnerable and exposed. Tempting evil doers of all shapes and stripes to gently turn them and come in our house. I immediately felt sick to my stomach.

defencedoormat

I’ve done this before. XFE has found my keys still in the door lock on at least 2 occasions that I can think of.

I immediately put down my raincoat, my purse, my to-go mug of coffee. I grabbed my phone and a very lethal looking butcher knife and began looking in every closet, behind every door, just waiting for my opportunistic murderer to jump out. I went out back and checked the shed, and behind the shed, my heart caught in my throat.

The scariest moment was the downstairs powder room. That door was completely closed. Was someone in there? What would I do? Also, I’m right handed. So, should I hold my phone in my right hand in case I need to call 911, or should I hold my knife in my right hand, so I can swipe and stab with premium skill?

armed

 

Luckily, my stabbing versus dialing skills were never put to the test. No one was in the house. But could I be sure? I mean, really, really sure? It worried me all the way to work, all day at work, on the way home, and especially while approaching my front door.

Obviously, everything was fine and normal and as it should be.

But I’m not out of the woods yet. I still have to get some sleep tonight and who knows how that’s going to go with the state of my nerves. What fills me with most dread though, (besides the possibility of making that mistake again and not having as much luck the next time around) is how much trouble I’m going to get in when XFE reads this. He hates these kind of stories, quite naturally. He’ll be worried and exasperated and it will come out as harsh and I’ll get defensive and teary-eyed.

But I’ll try to nod and agree and understand that he’s not mad at me, he’s mad at the situation. That I’ve put myself in. He’s far away and completely helpless. He’s only concerned and sad that he can’t do anything to help me or save me from my idiocy.

 

At least this time I didn’t need a locksmith.

The World is Such a Weird and Disturbing Place

8 Oct

I went for drinks with the some ladies the other night. Not just some random ladies, mind you. I actually knew the ladies. So, don’t worry. No stranger danger.

As these things are sometimes wont to do, the talk at one point turned to dating in D.C. Specifically, now difficult it could be. Or for some of us old ladies, how difficult it had been, back in the day. Pre-XFE-fineness.

I, like many ladies in D.C., had a horrible time dating here. I went on a lot of first and last dates. The pinnacle of my illustrious dating history was an evening where a guy I brought to a party left the party with another girl. We were on our first, and last, date.

I never did try online dating, but I certainly did think about it. And, there seems to be a dating site for everyone. One for cat lovers, of course (Purrsonals.com) I’ve also seen the truly masterpiece-level commercial for FarmersOnly.com, which has the excellent tagline: “City folks just don’t get it.”

 

Into the undead? You’ve got a couple of websites to chose from. Zombie Passions is for “zombie lovers & people who have been working in a dead-end job for too long.” Zombie Singles promises “a Zombifier to create your own Zombie profile picture, then meet and browse other Zombies from around the world!” But I couldn’t get it to load on my computer.

From the people who brought you Zombie Passions, we have Vampire Passions, of course. There are actually a whole lot of vampire sites: DateVampires, Vampersonals, and the broader GothicMatch. And from the people who brought you Zombie Passions and Vampire Passions, there’s WerewolfPassions.

And now, finally, there is a dating site for ghosts seeking other ghosts. Because ghosts need love too. What, no GhostPassions? Here’s an excellent description: “Finally, a dating site for singles who know how to get a life! Well, an afterlife. Okay, maybe some sort of in-between, nether-world, ethereal existence. But if you’re looking for love, and you’re dead, Ghost Singles is the site for you.”

Considering how some guys just disappear when you’re dating them, seems like Ghost Singles would actually be a pretty good place to find someone who may or may not actually exist.

ghost boyfriend

During our Lush Ladies Happy Hour, we also discussed another disturbing new trend: Dinosaur erotica. I mean, we discussed it in between contemplating the subtleties of the government shutdowns long-term effects on the voting electorate and solving the debt ceiling crisis with sound fiscal policies that could garner bipartisan support, of course.

But back to the dinosaur erotica. Yeah. That’s a thing. Here’s E! Online’s description:

Christie Sims and Alara Branwen are two authors who have garnered lots of attention lately for their “monster sex” erotica. Mainly, woman getting it on with dinosaurs. But they’re not limited to the prehistoric period, they also have stories of women having sex with weretigers, ogres, dragons, whatever.

You know, I’m a pretty socially liberal person, particularly when it comes to extinct reptiles. But even I cringed at this passage supplied by Huffington Post:

She wasn’t sure if her sudden arousal was because of her earlier thwarted climax in the cool stream, or if she was just desperate for one last pleasant sensation before being torn limb from limb by the great, scaly beast. Either way, Azog relished the rasp of its tongue, hot and rough, on her sensitive skin.

Huffington Post also has this excellent interview with the two authors tackling the really important questions, like which dinosaur makes the best cuddlers and how T-rex’s short arms are a problem during lovemaking.

I didn’t find a dating site for dinosaur lovers, but I did find something called a “dating sim,” which appears to be some sort of Third Life, alternative online thing. It’s called Jurassic Heart. Of course.

trex11

RIP: Unknown Search Terms

4 Oct

What a week, huh? Kray up here in tha DC, y’all, what with the government shutdown and all the crazy effects of that — veterans storming World War II memorials, DC metro saying it will run fewer train cars, and, worst of all, no panda cam at the National Zoo. Then there was that whole crazy car chase/shooting business yesterday.

How can you be so cruel, Congress?

How can you be so cruel, Congress?

All of that (plus the end of “Breaking Bad” — sooooo good; and total work insanity), has distracted us from a true travesty: the end of unknown search terms.

You see, one of the greatest and most amusing features of WordPress was a feature that rounded up terms used in search engines like Yahoo, Google and Bing, that somehow led people to your blog. For example, someone found my blog recently by searching for “grand theft auto widow.”

Anyway, this list of search terms brought me a ton of pleasure and laughs. Whenever I found a particularly weird search term, I would post it on Facebook or Twitter as a Totally Random Search Term that Brought Someone to thePoelog, also known as TRSTBS for short. And I would speculate exactly what kind of person would have been searching for that term. Here’s an example from September 11: Totally random search term that brought someone to thePoeLog “rat on a treadmill videos.” Welcome, Pied Piper in training.

Sadly, the search term feature is being relocated to a nice family farm out in the country, never to be heard from again. Here’s what WordPress says:

In September 2013 Google started to rapidly expand the number of searches that it encrypts, which results in a higher proportion of “Unknown search terms” in your stats.  According to some sources, this expansion will eventually result in encryption of all Google searches.  This is being done for privacy reasons by Google when someone searches at Google.com, before a visitor arrives at your WordPress.com site.  Therefore we don’t have any way to unhide the search terms.  We recognize this means a loss of stats information for you and we will look for other ways to show you how users arrived at your site.

Damn you Google! And Edward Snowden! And NSA, who really, when you think about it, started this whole nonsense to begin with. Listen, I got nothing to hide. If NSA wants to look at pictures of my chubby cat and whatever deliciousness XFE has made us for dinner, knock yourselves out. I live my life loud and proud.

However, other people do not really feel the same way I do and like their privacy to remain intact. But now, NSA, you’ve gone and made everyone all wild-eyed and outraged and who pays the price? Cultural observers such as myself who get a snicker out of people finding my blog while searching for “Kate Middleton porno.” (Can’t you just imagine their disappointment?)

kate compares

So far, however, I do have a list of the last month’s search terms that I’ve copied and saved. So, I thought we’d have a little Irish wake here, pour some wine (one for me and one for my fallen homies) and do a little Q&A using a small sampling of those last Totally Random Search Terms that Brought Someone to thePoeLog.

What to pack for doomsday — This is a very good question. Also, quite philosophical. On the one hand, does it really matter? After all, it’s doomsday. But, maybe our erstwhile searcher is an optimist and expects to survive and carry on the human species, perhaps with the assistance of one mighty fine Matthew McConaughey, for example. In that case, you might want to pack something lingerie, a nice sturdy box of wine, a sleeping bag, and a gun. The gun, mind you, isn’t to use on Matthew. It’s to protect Matthew from other the clutches of other lady survivors.

matthewut

How to get in touch with duck dynasty — Well, shouldn’t be too hard. West Monroe is a pretty small place. Population is only 13,000. I think if you hung around the Circle K long enough, you’re bound to run into one of those long-bearded fellas. Or, you could probably start going to their church. Or just stop by Duck Commander headquarters. They say on their website that, “We would be HAPPY, HAPPY, HAPPY for you to come by and say “HEY”.  You can even pay them to hang out with you, according to the website: for information on booking the Duckmen please visit WME Speakers at ducks@wmeentertainment.com

Is hilary from love it or list it pregnant — I haven’t been watching it lately (we’ve got three episodes hanging out on the DVR), so I don’t really know. But (and no offense here), she seems a bit old to be starting a family. I would guess the answer to this question would probably be no. Now Desta on the other hand, I believe she’s fairly recently married, so that would make sense. And if Hilary is pregnant, congratulations and good luck.

When is gold rush coming back on discovery channel — The Hoffman Knucklehead Crue are back on Discovery Channel on October 25. According to this blog: “In season four of GOLD RUSH, Todd Hoffman puts his life on the line, and asks his crew to do the same, braving malaria, poisonous snakes and quicksand to set up a mining operation in a patch of hostile jungle deep in Guyana, South America.” We saw a few preview episodes on Discovery a few months back, and it looks like plenty of bad decisions ahead.

Can you get brain eating amoebas feom bath water — I believe that should be “from” and my guess is yes. Brain eating amoebas are everywhere and we should all be afraid of them. Best to just take showers whilst holding your breath. But you might want to have a chair in the shower. If you pass out from holding your breath, amoeba-carrying water will definitely get up your nose and eat your brain.

Death and danger are everywhere. A pink floatie will not save you.

Death and danger are everywhere. A pink floatie will not save you.

When men reading shades of grey — I’m not familiar with the book “Shades of Grey,” so I’m guessing you mean “Fifty Shades of Grey.”  Also, this query seems to be missing some very important connecting words here, which changes the possible answers a bit. If you are asking “When do you find men reading fifty shades of grey,” then the answer is most likely when they think they won’t be caught, so maybe when they’re in the tub enjoying a nice bubble bath? If your question is, “what to do when men [are?] reading fifty shades of grey,” my advice is to avert your eyes and calmly and slowly walk away without drawing attention to the awkward situation. The obvious caveat here is that no man should be reading Fifty Shades of Grey. Even Matthew McConaughey.

I feel nervous about an upcoming trip — Totally understandable. Travel can be exciting but scary. After all, a lot of things can happen — the plane might crash, your luggage might get lost, the car rental place might be closed, the hotel might have lost your reservation, the roads might be blocked by protesting fishermen, you might eat bad salami and be violently ill for 10 days in one of the world’s great gourmet regions. Or, you might get a brain eating amoeba from taking a bath while reading “Fifty Shades of Grey.”

That would be a highway closed by protesting fishermen on our trip to Peru.

That would be a highway closed by protesting fishermen on our trip to Peru.

But, it’s all worth it because travel provides you with an opportunity to brag about all the great places you’ve been and all the great things you’ve seen on your very own blog. See? Don’t you feel better already?

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