30 June 2011


Alison Brie plays Annie Edison, sexy nerd girl on NBC's Community, and it isn't hard to imagine her as younger Liz Lemon, which is to say Ms. Brie seems a younger Tina Fey to me.

I don't know if that's why she hopscotched over Ms. Fey into the #2 spot on my Laminated List this year, or if it's because none of this actually matters.

Hotcha! Hank

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28 June 2011

Tuesday's Fortune: 28 June 2011

MEAL: 2 Roast Pork Egg Rolls + 1 small order Szechuan Pork = $6.45 + $1.55 tip

Hotcha! Hank

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24 June 2011

Something 4 The Weekend # 209

Angel: On Earth As It Is In Heaven: "Cast The First Stone" [mp3]

KISS was my favorite band when I was 9-11 years old, so when their label, Casablanca, signed Angel, I started listening to them. Such were the powers Gene Simmons had on my young and impressionable mind.

So, I was into Angel for a year or so, but then another Gene Simmons discovery, Van Halen, captured my curiosity and became my favorite band for the next 2-3 years...


By the time I was listening to Frank Zappa with regularity, I didn't give a shit about Angel anymore , so Zappa's song, "Punky's Whips", about drummer Terry Bozzio being in love with Angel's guitarist, Punky Meadows, was riotous to me...

Maybe that'll be next week's S4TW...

For now, bask in the glorious bombast of this sword and sandal epic, and take a look at the band's logo. I still think it's one of the greatest band logos ever, and certainly made me dig this band more than a stupid 10 year old kid really should.

Hotcha! Hank

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23 June 2011


In an effort to shake things up on this year's Laminated List, I've decided to drop Tina Fey down to the #3 spot for no reason whatsoever. If you need a reason, let's say it's because she is currently 5-6 months pregnant, and quite frankly, pregnant women don't "do anything" for me.

If nothing else, it's a reminder that she's married to someone else, but more to the point, that this whole Laminated List thing is rather ridiculous.

Hotcha! Hank

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21 June 2011

Tuesday's Fortune: 21 June 2011

MEAL: 2 Vegetable Spring Rolls + 1 small order Pork With Hot Garlic Sauce = $6.95 + $1.05 tip

Hotcha! Hank

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17 June 2011

Something 4 The Weekend # 208

Thin Lizzy: Jailbreak: "Cowboy Song" [mp3]

I usually play CDr's full of random MP3's on my car stereo, and this was the song that was arbitrarily playing during the five minute drive from my house to the veterinarian Wednesday morning.

As I wrote yesterday, Eno the cat had died earlier that morning, and I was taking him to the vet for cremation.

So, I sat there in the parking lot, cold rain pelting my car, and I half-sang, half-sobbed along to the final chorus of "Cowboy Song", staring down at Eno, wrapped in an old Minutemen t-shirt. What Makes A Man Start Fires? was his favorite album.

The wistfulness of this song, mixed with a free-spiritedness, seemed appropriate not only for my final moments with Eno, but his life and personality in general.

"It's okay, amigo, just let me go..."

Rest in peace, Eno-beeno.

Hotcha! Hank

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16 June 2011

R.I.P. Eno The Cat

Eno the cat, the younger of my two cats, died yesterday, after 15+ years of fun and companionship.

I got him as a kitten in the spring of 1996 from a farm in Lake Mills that had more cats than it wanted or needed. When I saw him for the first time, he was walking on the back of a cow laying in a barn stall, and I was smitten. My pick of the litter was made for me, because really, how can anyone deny a cat who walks on cows?

Eno was a large kitten that became a very large cat - 21 pounds of cat, in fact, when he was weighed at the veterinarian earlier this year. He was large, but never fat - fairly tall, and rather long, with plenty of muscle underneath his long and luxurious black and white coat. Despite his size, Eno never lost his tendency to climb big, dumb animals. I don't think a day went by that he didn't climb all over me. Half the time I found this quite hilarious, half the time I found it annoying, quite frankly. You ever try reading Lem novels with a 21 pound cat trying to balance on your shoulder while pawing at your hands and the turning pages?

Eno was a vocal cat. Every evening when I got home from work he and I would talk about our days while I washed the dishes or prepared dinner. I have absolutely no idea what the fuck he was saying, but he always sounded happy and rather pleased with himself, so I always figured he was cool, I was cool, and we were cool. He also liked to sit on the back of the couch and watch the world outside the living room window. More specifically, he liked to "chitter" at the birds and rabbits. Yes, the birds and rabbits, and even that groundhog that took residence next door for the better part of 2007, but never the fucking squirrels. Eno understood the score with the squirrels, and he feared and loathed them with the same kind of passion that I do. He did. I know he did. Yes.

I won't recall to you the details of Eno's last day, except to say that it all happened rather fast. He went from sick to gone in less than 24 hours, and when he took a sudden turn for the worse at about 2 am yesterday, I knew that he wasn't long for this world, and the best I could do was be near him, talk to him, and hope he wasn't in too much pain.

He took his last, labored breath at about 6am yesterday morning, and it was heartbreaking to actually witness. The finality of it, his sudden absence, was and remains surreal to me. Less than 24 hours earlier he was headbutting me awake and crawling on my back.

15 years together that started and ended with him crawling around on the back of a big, dumb animal that just wanted to sleep.

It was a fun and interesting 15 years, and I will miss him more than I thought I could, and more than he'll ever know.

Rest in peace, Eno.


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Kat Dennings just turned 25 on Monday, so...Happy Birthday, Ms. Dennings!

I'm not sure if 25 is age-appropriate or not. She's young enough to be my daughter, and more to the point, she's at the age where I would have helped conceive her my freshman year of college. Thinking back to my Hazeltine House days, yeah, that definitely could have happened...

I suppose Kat Dennings is the bombshell on this year's Laminated List - the Reubenesque stunner with the big blue eyes, impossible to miss or ignore.

What's best, however, is that Ms. Dennings will be playing one of the two leads on a new sitcom called 2 Broke Girls, premiering this fall on CBS. Considering CBS' success with sitcoms, I expect to get a weekly dose of Kat Dennings for several years to come. Will it be enough to keep her on this list of mine? Who knows.

Hotcha! Hank

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14 June 2011

Tuesday's Fortune: 14 June 2011

MEAL: 1 order (8) Crab Rangoon + 1 small order Moo Goo Gai Pan = $8.00 + $1.00 tip

Hotcha! Hank

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11 June 2011


I don't know what to make of this. He looks like a perverted Bert, so I call him Perbert.

Hotcha! Hank

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Something 4 The Weekend # 207

Cults: Cults: "Bumper" [mp3]

Last night I went to a house party over on Jennifer Street. It was hosted by a friend of a friend of a friend named Dean, and his girlfriend and/or wife (I'm not sure), Sara(h). A dude named Clive was playing disc jockey, manning a laptop hooked up to an appropriately sized PA system, and for the most part, he did alright.

Being a friend of a friend of a friend, I knew pretty much nobody at this party. Being a slightly older outsider, the soundtrack of the evening wasn't necessarily my cup of tea, but Clive's song selections, a mix of mostly modern (from the past decade) R'n'B and Hip Hop, with some Indie Rock thrown in, seemed to make most people happy, so who am I to complain?

At it's height, there were about 60-70 people at this party. I spent half of my time in the kitchen, where conversation is easier, away from the speakers, and out on deck in the backyard, where smoking was permitted and the conversation liveliest. Down in the basement a group played poker. Most of the people I met were young professionals, less than a decade out of college. They were mostly smart, fairly funny, and somewhat arrogant in that cute way that 20-somethings often can be. Life hadn't kicked their asses yet, but things were definitely starting to get real. Adult real. Talk of impending marriages and first kids, and buying houses floated freely around the party, but I was one of the few at the party standing on the other side of all that - my peer group mostly has all that, and some of us have already had it and lost it - divorces and custody battles, and going back to renting one bedroom apartments to start all over again. But for these people last night, there was hope and promise in all these things, and that in turn, made me feel good, and younger.

For his part, Clive did alright. At some point in the first half of the party, he played this song, "Bumper", by Cults, and I remember sitting at the kitchen table thinking that I should make this song this week's S4TW, and here we are. I'm not really hungover right now, but I was drinking gin and tonics last night, and today I'm slightly queasy, and just feeling weird.

Hotcha! Hank

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09 June 2011


Is it weird, or even creepy, that a middle-aged guy such as myself posts an annual Laminated List on this stupid, pointless blog of mine?

Would it help if I said I feel young? Would it help if I told you that three of the five women on my Laminated List are completely age-appropriate?

Connie Britton, for instance...She's 44 years old. Under completely different circumstances, we could have dated in high school.

As it stands, she's simply a gorgeous redhead playing what I believe is the best female character on network television (Tami Taylor on Friday Night Lights), and giving one of the best performances as well. It's impossible not to adore and admire Tami Taylor, the no-nonsense high school guidance counselor, mother and wife of the school's football coach - the character I believe is the absolute center and anchor of the entire show. And human psychology, being what it is, it's difficult not to imagine that Connie Britton is a similar kind of awesome woman in real life.

Whether she is that kind of cool or not, I still find myself transfixed by her beauty, and with this being the final season of Friday Night Lights, an excellent TV drama that I'm sad to see going, I've been thinking more about her and her character these past couple of months, and I realized just how attracted I've been Connie Britton over the years, going all the way back to Spin City, which debuted in 1996.

This Laminated List, being what it is, will probably not include Ms. Britton next year, but for now, for 2011...

Hotcha! Hank

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07 June 2011

Tuesday's Fortune: 07 June 2011

MEAL: 2 Vegetable Spring Rolls + 1 small order Beef Chow Mein = $6.65 + $1.35 tip

Hotcha! Hank

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03 June 2011

Epic With A Little Parmesan, A Little Oregano, A Little Red Pepper

The word "epic" is tossed around rather liberally these days, but Jon Stewart's takedown of Donald Trump whilst paying heartfelt homage to New York's pizza greatness is nothing short of EPIC (bold, all caps, italics). It is easily, hands-down, the funniest "thing" I've seen in a long, long, long time, and the kind of performance that wins an actor and a writing staff Emmys.

I apologize for the probable advert at the start of this embedded Hulu clip, but the 7+ minutes that follow are well worth the wait. The way Stewart slips effortless into his goomba "act", the way he lovingly and enthusiastically talks about great NYC pizzerias, the eating lesson, all the while blasting Trump (for pretty good reason, I'd say), it's absolutely epic. Completely over-the-top, and yet this is about authenticity and class.

And then the final shot at the end about citizenship, the twist that not only makes The Donald look even more inauthentic, but just plain foolish. It's a brilliant piece of comedy and a pretty high wire performance.

Hotcha! Hank

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Something 4 The Weekend # 206

I swaggered up to the checkout at Best Buy tonight with the new Tyler The Creator CD in hand, and the black college dude working the register kinda looked at me like he might've dropped a deuce in his drawers, like "what's this greybeard doing with some Golf Wang shit?".
For some reason it reminded me of the time a few years back when the black college dude and his friends next door heard me pumping this album through my living room windows while they were shooting hoops. The next evening when I came home from work they called me over, asked me about it, and in quick order we were talking about Hip Hop and playing a loose game of H-O-R-S-E. I actually schooled their asses a bit about Hip Hop, but I couldn't hit from downtown to save my life.

Anyways, after that night I drank and smoked and played dominoes with those guys a few times in their garage, but Luke moved to Minneapolis a year or so later, and that was that. It was fun while it lasted.

A Filipino lesbian lives there now, and she seemed pretty cool the couple of times I've talked to her. I don't know if she likes Danger Mouse & Gemini, or Hip Hop in general, and I'm not gonna guess.

Hotcha! Hank

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02 June 2011

Sideways Casino Maneuver

Modulation - check it out... Ain't this boogie a mess?

Hotcha! Hank

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USA Sideways Maneuver Aftermath

Here are the Drive-By Truckers, doing a song called "Aftermath USA", which sounds less like an American approximation of the Rolling Stones and more like an approximation of Wilco doing their approximation of The Rolling Stones.

So much white boogie!

Hotcha! Hank

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