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Entry date: 2-7-2022 - Alphonse Is A Green Weenie - Letters to My Friends

Dear Friends,

A few weeks ago, I watched a very strange movie called The Last Shift with Richard Jenkins (Six Feet Under and Wolf and many other movies). It was an interesting experience, for sure, and if you are in the mood for a long, slow burn, that’s a movie for you. Jenkins is painfully good. I’m not sure why I thought of that just now, but I did and here we are.


The weekend was good. We had some yard work to do, as I mentioned previously, and I got a head start on it Saturday morning. I have to admit that I am not a yardwork guy. I don’t enjoy it and I’m guessing I never will. One good thing is that once I get going, though, I tend to work very hard and get a lot done. It’s the getting started that is the problem.


After some yardwork, we met some friends for a hike. Because the main entrance to Dreamy Draw is closed for the big water project the city is doing, we parked in the lot south of Shea on 40th Street. I’ve never been up there before, and it was really cool and nice. We set off on the number 100 trail, which runs all over the mountain preserve up there, and did 3 miles. Tom and Renee and their son, Quentin, are among my favorite people on the planet and we had a wonderful time walking and talking.


During the hike, Quentin and I had a fun discussion about the benefits of a good label maker. I’ve been a fan for a long time due to the wonderful opportunities that label makers afford us to post somewhat subliminal messages anywhere you feel good about posting them. I shared a couple of stories with Quentin about my love of label makers.


One had to do with my time at Courtesy Chevrolet in the mid-90s and finding a label maker there one day. I started making labels and putting them around the dealership in what I thought were places that would catch the eye but not necessarily conscious attention. Little things like “Conform” or “Are you sure?” or “Finance Lies.” That sort of thing. I had a lot of fun working there and should probably tell some of those stories.


The other had to do with finding that this large glass that was in the apartment my dad and I lived in on 12th Street and Butler. It was like a huge pint glass that probably held 8 pints and the label attached to it said, “Alphonse is a green weenie.” I was always curious as to why it said that and how the label got there. Who is Alphonse and why is he a green weenie?


After our hike, which we ran into my old and dear friend, Bill, while he was out for a mountain bike ride, we headed home to get ready to go and have some dinner at our friend’s home. Jeff and Angela put out a great spread and it was nice to see them, their son, and a few other friends. The highlight of the evening, which was really wonderful all the way around, was seeing how talented our children all are in their own ways.

Jeff and Angela’s son share the love of guitar with our son, Liam, and they were jamming a lot during the night. Our friends, Lance and Amy, have a swimming prodigy, Jack, who is super talented and turning into a very interesting and intelligent young man. Between them and our daughter, Teresa, who is a wonderful writer and artist, we are so lucky. It’s really nice to know that the world will be in good hands with our kids at the helm.


We played some pool, though, and had an awesome meal. One of our favorite pastimes is making up band names and we came up with a few doozies. I’m reluctant to share as I don’t want to get cancelled yet, but perhaps you can coax it out me, dear reader. Lance and Jeff were my bandmates in Pinky Tuscadero’s White Knuckle Assfuck so we’re no stranger to interesting band names.


After a decent night’s sleep (and being happy the Suns killed the Wizards), I got up this morning and wrote a piece for New Times about the old blues band, Chuck Hall & The Brick Wall. What a fun couple of interviews that was with Chuck and their manager, Paul Dorman. I really enjoyed talking to both of those guys. It turns out that Dorman worked with my bandmate, Michael, and his band, Housequake, back in the day.


Small world.


After doing some writing, I talked to Taylor, who is the daughter of my old boss, Stephanie. We had a good chat about what may or may not happen to Casa and I assured her that I’m here to help. The more I think about it, I don’t want Casa to go away. I’ll do whatever I can to keep things going. Should be an interesting ride. The important thing is doing right by the legacy that Stephanie created during her 34 years with Casa.


I got busy on the yard after lunch and cranked it out until I had to get in the shower and get ready for our Club Placebo meeting. It was another productive meeting with the group, and I can’t wait for Tuesday when our first event at the club will be officially announced. Keep your calendars open on March 12, people.


This will be a busy week at work with parent teacher conferences happening. I also have a fair amount of writing to do, which is nice. The last month of keeping this blog has really helped with my ability to crank out the writing for other projects, although I’m getting to the point where the most fulfilling writing is what’s happening right here.


Tonight, and Tuesday night will be big nights for the Suns with back-to-back games with the Bulls and 76ers. Go Suns! Have a great week everyone.


See you tomorrow.



photo by the one, the only, the beautiful Rhondi. I love that she captured my shark.


Instead of a play list, just listen to fugazi.

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