Thursday, April 25, 2013

Fear of Latitudes: Session 3

Awhile back Pat was brave enough to admit that he had a fear of latitudes (the post can be found here and/or here). After calling him a lati-pansy I decide that I wanted to help him conquer these fears. We learned it had something to do with some gibberish about something or something but we also learned that a picture of Jennifer Connely had a calming effect on Pat that helps him deal with this fear.

We had a second session that began with a picture of Jennifer Connely - that can be found here and way over here - during which we learned that Pat’s latitude phobia may have had something to do with a sexy Swedish au pair named Inga that Pat stayed with for a bit while visiting Sweden in the second grade. But that’s where we left things off.

I figured it’s about time we check in again to see how Pat is doing with conquering this oddball fear of his. But of course we first need to start with a picture of the star from the hit show Friends and and the new Hunger Game movies Jennifer Connely, so that Pat feels comfortable and safe before we dive in.


Christian: So Pat, how have things been since our last session?

Pat:  Pretty good, but I’ve gone nowhere near any northern latitudes. Well, I had to teach students about countries like Russia and Canada and Finland and Denmark--did you know that they own Greenland? Crazy!--so I guess I got kind of close, but it was mainly just with maps.

Yeah, pretty good. But now you have me second guessing something else, which is kind of bringing up some new feelings. I never said that Inga was an au pair. She was a friend. That’s all. But now I’m wondering if you saw something in my words that gave you insight into what she REALLY was, and I’m wondering why I might have had a Swedish nanny for a while and why my parents didn’t feel comfortable telling me.

So...yeah. Other that completely questioning everything I thought I knew about my childhood, I think I’m good.

Christian: Here’s a quote by you from our second session:

“I don’t remember much of Inga, except that when she stayed with my family (exchange student? Au pair? Mail order sister-wife?) we had a lot of dinner parties...”

So the thing I saw in your words that made me think she might have been an au pair was the part where you say au pair.

I’m starting to get greatly concerned about you. Seems like you are really suppressing this sensuous Inga woman. She must have made quite an impact on you. Continue.

Pat:  GOD! I HATE it when you use my exact words in quote form to remind me of what I said. I’ve told you lots and lots of times (I think) that I’m not aware of a good 70% of the words that come out of my mouth....or fingers.

And please don’t use the word “sensuous” anymore. I think Inga might be, like, 70 now. I feel like I need to apologize to her for the image that just popped into my head. And I WOULD, too, except that she lives so damn far north.

Christian: I did a google image search for Swedish au pair and this was the first image that came up so I’m assuming this is Inga:

Definitely Inga

So this sensuous sensual Inga woman seems to be stirring some strong emotions in you. Tell me about your earliest memory of her. And what she was wearing.

Pat:  Wow...that could nearly be a spitting image for Inge/Inga. That, or for one of the many many girls I remember fantasizing over noticing on the beaches of Lake Mälaren in Stockholm. Y’see...I was all of seven years old, and Sweden is a country where the women are HOT!!! strong and confident enough to sunbathe topless, even in the face of completely mesmerized interested and curious young visitors from foreign lands.

I think I could maybe be encouraged to travel to higher latitudes now.  

Christian: Yes it sounds like you might be cured now. However we still don’t know from what.

Perhaps you are afraid of beauty. Maybe you have been projecting your fear of beauty onto latitudes because of their association with all those sensual northern bound Swedish au pairs you saw as an impressionable youth. I guess that would mean you are also suppressing them while projecting them. Projeppressing them? Either way you’re doing something wacko with them.

Is it really beauty you fear?

Although, if so, how is it that you’re not afraid of me then? Weird.

Pat:  First off...duh! “Beauty” and “sui generis” are two COMPLETELY different things. Apples and oranges, buddy.

Secondly...duh! I can totally tell you what it is I’m afraid of--and by the way...NOW who’s losing their memory? Pretty sure I already explained this in one of the earlier posts (but please don’t go look, ‘cause I’m usually too lazy to go back and look--I just have a really good feeling about this one--and I HATE it when you prove me idiotic in public, and I REALLY hate it when you do it twice in the same post!), but it is the completely rational fear that as you move poleward you lose the balance and ability to stay fixed on the earth that comes with relative proximity to the equator, or its cousins the tropics.  Simply put...I’m afraid of either falling over or falling off, or worse yet, BOTH!

Christian: Yes but the question still remains as to why you are afraid of falling as you venture away from the equator. I still think it might have something to do with sexy Swedish au pairs. But I’m getting kind of sleepy so  it looks like our session is over for today. I’ll go do some more research on sexy Swedish au pairs and we’ll pick this up in our next session.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Blogging is SO 2011!

It’s probably clear to our readers by now which one of us possesses the master technology skills and which one is devastatingly handsome. And, might I add...thank you!

I admit to not being very adept at the latest technological trends. Christian did have to tell me that I didn’t need a “fancy phone” (my words) in order to follow his Twitters. He also is the person solely responsible for making sure that these words I type make their way onto the world wide web.

But what you may not know is that, while a bit slow with techie trends, I tend to be VERY hip to all other trends. For example, I know that Paula Dean is kinda’ on the outs now, and that the cooks in the little artisanal vegan deep-fry gluten-free food carts are the new chef-ebrities! And I know that Duran Duran is on its way back. Just you wait!

So...I heard about a little something developing in the world of mass media and communication that I wanted to run by Christian:

Pat:  Hey buddy--have you heard of podcasts? I think we need to do one of those. I heard that blogs are out, and that we really should be using our voices instead of our fingers to say words to one another.  

I heard some younger people at a coffee shop talking about them the other day, and, from the sounds of it, I think these podcasts are poised to be about as revolutionary as CDs were a couple of years ago.

Whaddya’ game for trying something new?

Christian: I don’t know. I know about podcasts and their popularity but I don’t know if that format would work for me. I know you’re able to just toss out your portions of these posts in mere seconds without having to put much time, thought, or any effort into them but for me it’s a long painstaking process.

Every word is thoroughly thought out and chosen specifically for succeeding in its purpose. If we did a podcast I would feel rushed and wouldn’t be able to hold myself to the high standard of word choosing that I uh... hold myself to. Artists can’t be rushed. People didn’t rush da Vinci or Tolstoy or Rush.

Pat:   Good point...hadn’t thought about that. Indeed, how many masterpieces would we be WITHOUT if Alex, Neil and Geddy had been hurried through their 12 minute long opusses? Opusi? Opus’?  

Not sure who those other two guys are, but I trust you. Were they Canadian too?

I have an idea, though! What if we put a new spin on this whole podcast “fad” by making ours the slowest podcast ever, in order to truly honor the craft? That way people could experience, firsthand, the agonizing energy and thought it takes to create such brilliance. You in?

Christian: What do you mean by slow? Because my concern is that the majority of the podcast would just be silence or me repeatedly saying “Ummm...”.

Pat:   Yeah...just like that. But I could fill in the silences between your “ummms” with my own annoyingly verbose attempts to guess what it is you’re thinking of saying. Like this:

Christian:  Ummm...

Pat:   Oh, I know, you’re thinking it’s like when you eat that last part of a banana, the part that’s kind of hard and makes you gag a little and then yo-

Christian:  Ummm...


Christian: Sure, in written word that sounds pretty captivating. But I’m guessing in a recorded sound medium that might come across as ummmm... boring.

Are you thinking that we would prepare a script ahead of time and then read from it? Because I can read. Or were you thinking about improvising it? I’m not good at improvising. I once tried to improvise a eulogy I was giving and it just ended up with me showing everyone pictures of my cats from my phone.

Pat:  See, that’s not going to work, because I think on a podcast you can only make sounds. So people wouldn’t be able to see the pictures of your cats. Scratch that idea off the list before we forget and try to get people to hear the pictures.

Well, everyone knows that improvisation is the source of all truly great comedy. But if it’s hard for you, then maybe we can try scripting your part and leaving my part for the impromptu stuff. I bet I could fill in the gaps between your ideas really easily. You’ve never been that hard to figure out.  In fact, I bet I can predict what you’re going to say right after this sentence, so I’ll go ahead and respond in advance AFTER you’ve said it.


Pat:  Really? That’s funny, ‘cause I’ve never really liked them. Something about warmed tuna with melty cheese kinda’ grosses me out. (Psst!  How’d I do?)

Christian: Hah! See, you put me on the spot there and my mind went blank. Granted I may have been distracted by this amazing tuna melt I’m eating but I don’t think you could come anywhere close to predicting what I might say.

For now, I’ll think some more about diving into the podcast realm. Especially if you think they are going to be the next CDs. I don’t want to miss out on “cutting any edges off of technology”, as the technology edge cutting people say.

But damn this is a good tuna melt. Although to be honest I could eat tuna melts everyday.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Which Historical Event to Visit?

Pat, if you could go back in time and witness any historical event you wanted and then come right back to current time which would it be? Keeping in mind you wouldn’t be able to change the event at all. You would just be an invisible ghost observing the situation.

Pat:  Can’t we go forward? I’d kinda’ like to do that. Less troublesome. I just sort of want to know more about the ground rules before we play this game. That okay? a little teaser, I’m thinking it’d be cool to witness something BIG, and I’m kinda’ thinking the wheel is where it’s at. Whoever did that must have been REALLY psyched at the progress they’d made. And I bet they sounded a lot like this guy:

Listen to my sheer bliss here

Christian:  I guess you could go forward but how will you know ahead of time if the event is historical or not, since it hasn’t happened yet?

Pat:  Ooh! Good one. Umm...I think it’s more like I’d be leaving near-history and venturing forth into history-yet-to-be. Y’ when Scrooge got visited by all those ghosts. It’d be like that.

Christian: Can you give me an example event?

Pat:  Duh! No...hasn’t happened yet.

Oh, I get to invent an event to go to? Is this like that “actualization” stuff they do at new-age retreats? Okay...I’ll play!

I want to go forward to that time when, my body having become perfectly toned, I’m elected “Prime Model of the Human Specimen” by every citizen on earth.

Christian: OK, you are completely missing the point of this so I’ll go.

I think I would want to witness the discovery of fire. Imagine how excited they must have been. Although most likely they immediately tried to eat it but I bet they were still pretty excited.

It would be interesting to see if they discovered it by accident or was there some thought put into it. Was it a man or a woman that discovered it?  And how many people were involved? Was it one person or a group effort? If it was a group, I bet they all had a blast celebrating afterwards. Except for maybe that one guy that tried to eat it.

Plus they probably thought wizards were involved or something so it would be fun to laugh and point at them because of that.

The invention of the wheel is an OK choice but that probably just consisted of some dude tripping over a log and noticing it rolled. Big whoop-de-doo.

Pat:  Okay, now I think I get it. And I kinda’ want to play. Is it too late? It was always too late when I finally wanted to play whatever was going down on the playground. That is, until someone told me about the game, “Throw-The-Ball-At-Pat”.

Umm...along the lines of your wheel event, I think I’d like to be a witness to the precise moment when the first ever SHOE was invented. I like the idea of someone saying, “Oh, I just never thought to put anything THERE! It feels so much nicer now!”

Christian: That seems like it couldn’t be any more boring.

You realize the first shoe was probably even more primitive than this:

The person that “discovered” it probably just got their feet tangled up in some vines and decided to leave them on their feet instead of going through the effort to untangle them. It was probably the same dude that tripped over a log and “discovered” the wheel.

I think you need to pick another event.

Pat:  Well, I think that shoe looks kinda’ something I might wear to Burning Man. Totally carbon neutral, yeah? Leaves no footprint, yeah? Well...aside from the actual footprint.

Fine. Another one? about going back to when porn was invented? But not if it was first found sketched roughly on the inside of caves. I bet those drawings weren’t very precise. I think I mean porn that was painted on canvas or drawn on paper.

Christian: And what exactly are you expecting to see during this historical moment? I think best case scenario all you’re going to see is some guy sitting at a table drawing. The worst case scenarios are probably going to be pretty bad.

Pat: Such a dude, Christian. So limiting. Don’t you think it COULD have been a woman who invented porn? I doubt it too, but at least I haven’t written it out as a possibility. Geez.  

But you make a good point. Porn-invention could get kinda’ icky.

Indoor plumbing? I bet that was a pretty exciting time in history.

Christian: But that probably includes them testing it out. Nope. Try again.

Pat:  Yeah? What’s wrong with that? I think testing all sorts of indoor plumbing prototypes sounds pretty fun.

Hey--thinking back, did you and I have trouble finding common interests in high school? I didn’t think so, but now I’m kinda’ wondering if maybe we had absolutely nothing in common.

Christian: I do recall not being nearly as interested in toilets as you were in high school so that might explain some things here.

I guess we could just agree to disagree but I disagree with that. We’ll let our dearest cherished readers decide. Which would be the best historical event to visit? The invention of fire or the invention of indoor plumbing. Or perhaps another event? Hmmmm?

Thursday, April 4, 2013

What Kind of Noodler Are You?

One of the sticky issues we love to tackle here at P-CPPP central is food. Well, not sticky foods. No, that’s not right. Controversial foods, maybe. No...that’s stuff like veal and fois gras. Ah, shit...we just like to talk and argue about trivial stuff, and sometimes that stuff is food. And the food I want to talk about is noodles. Pasta, specifically. Thus the title.*

(Psst!  Christian--you usually start these things off, and now I see why. It’s hard. Hat’s off to you man!)
Pat:  Hey buddy. I’ve been struggling with something really important lately. If you could only have one kind of noodle for the rest of your life, what would it be? I’m curious, because in all of this talk of influenza and zombies and Justin Bieber, I kinda’ wanna’ stock up, and I want to make sure I get the right one.

Christian: Why? Are you planning on having me over if/when the apocalypse happens? If so, to be honest, I don’t know how much of a mood I will be in for pasta. Seems kind of heavy for an end of the world type meal. Is there something else I could order instead?

Pat:  Nope, you nailed it. I’m calling it the A-pasta-lypse! I’m gunning for orrechiette. Did you know it means “little ear”? How cool is that? I think I wanna’ serve it to my vegetarian friends and freak them out.

Them: “What?! I’m eating little ears?!”

Me: “No...that’s just the name of the pasta”

(But what they don’t know is that the sauce is simply pureéd steak. Hah hah! Suckers!)

Christian: Well, isn’t the reason why there are different pasta shapes is because of the different kinds of sauces and whatnot that goes along with them? For example, your more curly type pastas were designed to hold onto more sauce and flavor while the long skinny ones were designed to drive you mad with frustration while you try to wrap some around your fork.

So for me to chose just one pasta I’ll need to know what you will be putting on them. Apocalypse or no apocalypse I’m not going to be caught dead eating cappelletti noodles with a clam based sauce.

Pat:  Right. Again, you’re spot on, buddy. See...I think in the apocalypse, sauces are going to be kind of hard to come by, what with the unclean water and such. So which shape do you think makes the best UNIVERSAL noodle, good with any sauce or even--gasp!--sans sauce?

Christian: Wait, you’re not suggesting we are going to eat noodles without anything on them are you? Just because it’s the apocalypse doesn’t mean we have to start living like hyenas.

Pat:  Well, I certainly HOPE not. I AM one sixteenth Italian, remember. And in keeping with that hope, I’m just curious which noodle has the best potential for pairing well with the greatest number of sauces or sauteés. the unfortunate event of a sauceless world, it might behoove us to spend a moment considering a noodle whose shape is so delightful that it does not need a sauce to bring about a small amount of joy.

Christian: To be honest all the noodles taste the same to me when they are sauceless. I think the real question here is, would we really want to go on living in a sauceless world? I think the obvious answer to that is no.

So with that settled, let’s assume there are still sauces in the post-apocalyptic world. Although at this point I would imagine sauces would be the new currency.

“Be still my dog of war. I understand your pain. We've all lost someone we love. But we do it my way!
We do it my way. Fear is our ally. The sauces will be ours. Then you shall have your revenge.” - Humongous

Thus since we would now be living in a violent world with day to day power struggles over who would rule supreme over all the sauces, and I can only choose one noodle, I would probably pick whichever noodle has the most square area of scooping ability so that it could hold as much sauce as possible. So I don’t know, I guess cannelloni?

You should stock up on cannelloni.

Pat:  But cannelloni is usually filled with stuff, isn’t it? That kinda’ makes the sauce irrelevant. Right? So listen, little buddy, I’m nothing if not amenable to new ideas. What say we turn this into a discussion of the ideal sauce, then? Hmm?

What say you to that? And I defy you to come up with a better all around sauce than the Argentinian chimichurri. Done. There...see? That was a nice discussion.

*Not to be confused with Okie Noodling. Honestly, I didn’t even know that shit existed. Is it real?