Monday, February 15, 2010

Fireworks, part one

First of all, no one was hurt in this entry. That is pretty amazing on the face of it. It is a questionable idea, in my opinion, to put gigantic fireworks warehouses right by the highway where anyone with a car and maybe a license can just tell themselves "Cool, fireworks!" and pull in and buy some. The mighty NDI never postured ourselves as deep-thinkers, or responsible, so it is extra-questionable to put gigantic fireworks warehouses on the highway right where we could see them in Charleston, West Virginia in 1991. This is right around the time we began to see some profits from our musical stylings. So in addition to eating at restaurants with names on the front, we also began investing in entertainment-grade explosives.
The first awesome idea we had came about after we found a deal on some very basic "bottle rocket" fireworks. These are just re-tooled firecrackers stuck onto a stick about a foot long, and instead of exploding they shoot up and into whatever is overhead, like powerlines or the ceiling. We found a deal on these little guys at a fireworks store that was really just a huge tent open all night and where we staggered in at about 4 in the morning after a massively loud dose of chaos at a club called The Hammered Miner (I think). We strolled along under the buzzy fluorescent lights and tried to find the most potential damage to fit our budget, which was about 5 dollars. We were about to give up when as luck would have it Skipper tripped over an infant and fell right up against a HUGE bargain, a pallet of these bottle rocket things for $2.99. It took two of us to lift it into the van.
Our first idea was to see if we could build one of those backpack lift-off thingies that guys have in spy movies. The answer to this was "NO," but it was completely awesome watching GT screaming and running around the parking lot looking like he had fire shooting out of his butt. We had to admit that, as usual, we were being waaaay too ambitious.
So the next idea was to turn our van into a space attack warship vehicle. For this all we needed was a van, which we had, some bottle rockets, which we had, and a roll of ducktape which we were pretty sure we had somewhere. GT emptied the entire van and swore a lot before we found it in the pocket of Skipper's tux coat.
Here's why we needed the ducktape: it seemed reasonable that we could fasten empty beverage bottles to our side mirrors in such a way that they faced forward, and then load them with rockets and fire them like missiles as we traveled the late-night back roads of rural West Virginia.
At this point in the story I need to have a quick consultation with a lawyer friend of mine. Hold on just one minute --

He says I should insert the url or Earl or whatever of a site I like: Junior High is COOL!

Monday, February 8, 2010

The Big Noodle

Hey hi howdy! I have been away from my desk for a few weeks but now I have found it again and I am ready to wail on your sense of decency with another tale from the funky-smelling vaults of memory. I am speaking of today of one of the two subjects the mighty NDI is at all familiar with -- FOOD. I know I already talked about mullet so don't get all worried that I forgot I already told you that one and you will have to sit though me telling it again as if you were hearing it for the first time, and fake laugh. No kids, today I have a double handful of new delicacies that I hope you find as horrifying and tasty as I did!

The Big Noodle

This item was encountered on a trans-hemispherical airplane ride to I think Holland, a fascinating and real country where we found out they have tiny horses called "Shitland Ponies" roaming around in the fields. They are about the same size as sheep but they are horses and therefore somewhat cuter. Holland also has honest-to-god windmills here and there. If you are planning on going into a windmill, WATCH YOUR HEAD. There are no signs to that effect like there would be if the windmill was somewhere in America -- these Hollanders just trust you to realize that there is a ridiculously huge wood and canvas propeller headed for your bean and that you should get out of the way without being told. So although Skipper's injuries were not life-threatening they were, in my opinion, preventable.

Also in Holland they have "The Netherlands." We never went there but everyone kept telling us how beautiful they are so okay, they are beautiful.

On the plane, though, it was time to eat. The menu and all the signs were in some language that was impossible to figure out just by looking at it real hard and sounding out the syllables, so we were pretty much at a loss. I was sitting a few rows behind Goodtime and Skipper and there was the usual drunk German between me and the aisle so I couldn't even ask those guys. Skipper has traveled a lot and eaten a lot, or so he claims, and I would have liked to ask him what "Skhasr Brodtgaarvid" meant before I ordered it. But I couldn't. But it had the word "brodt" in it and that sounded like "brat," and the stadium sausages in Finland were pretty tasty, and Holland and Finland both have "land" in the title, so I just ordered it.

Some of my readers of a more recent vintage may be confused when I speak about ordering from a menu on a plane. But it used to be that you could get an actual meal while you were going 500 miles an hour 7 miles up in the air. The good old days!

So I ordered Skhasr Brodtgaarvid and settled back to wait. The drunk German ordered another triple-sec and cane liquor. The hum of foreign-language muttering filled the airplane air.

Then the feeding cart was on its way! I was pretty hungry but also a little apprehensive because once in Brussels I ordered something based on a hunch and it turned out to be tiny birds in sauce. Then the feeding cart was at my row! The drunk German got his booze and I got my Skhasr Brodtgaarvid. It was under a fancy silver lid thing which was HOT so using my napkin I grasped the handle and picked up the lid and beheld my meal.

I could tell right away that it wasn't a brat, or probably any kind of sausage. It looked like a good-sized cod filet, floating in a kind of buttery pool and sprinkled with bacon bits. The German looked at me sideways and grunted and took a long pull from his cocktail. What was this odd food item? I wished desperately that Skipper was within earshot so that he could identify my meal before I bit into it. I am not crazy about fish of any kind (except for mullet) and anyway it seemed possible that this dish was actually land-based. Was it veal? A big slab of congealed oatmeal? Marzipan?

I was really hungry, though, and a good sport, so I wielded my knife and fork and hacked off a good-sized chunk. Into the pie-hole! And then I knew -- it was a noodle. A big noodle! A noodle the size of a slipper! Never had I encountered a dish that was one noodle, and never had I encountered a noodle of such epic proportions. I contemplated slicing it into many small noodles and thereby converting my foreign dish into an American one like spaghetti, but that sounded like too much work.

So I dove into that big noodle. And do you know what? That big noodle was delicious! Thick and gluey and endless, but delicious! It made me wonder why we even bother to divide up our noodles into rotinis and rigatonis and so on in the first place. It all winds up in the same place!

I thought about going to tell my band mates about the awesome noodle, but the German was entering the first phase of passing out and I knew from experience not to touch him or interact with him in any way. Besides, they would never believe me. So I just sat there, full of Skhasr Brodtgaarvid, secure in the knowledge that there was a noodle out there that didn't need to be broken into little pieces, that could stand united, solid, a weighty reminder of how semolina flour and water and maybe an egg could be formed into something huge and edible and just left that way.

When we got to Holland we rocked them out of their socks. I like to think the big noodle helped.

And that is that, kiddies, the actual story of an actual meal at 500 mph. There are more food stories to come, only maybe not at such high speeds. Stay tuned! And another thing -- if you have a lot of time that you are contemplating wasting, why not waste it here, reading my entertaining articles: Pigtail on!

Wait -- I keep forgetting to tell people to sign up as a regular member here. This is so I won't have to spend valuable time spamming all of my friends -- it will just happen automatically!

rock on!
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