Thursday, April 26, 2012

Mad Men and a Sentimental Journey

The Old Howard Johnson's

Sunday night's Mad Men episode "Far Away Places" brought back some fond memories of my childhood.  Several scenes in that episode took place at a Howard Johnson's restaurant. It made me think of the times my grandparents would take me back to Greensboro after spending time with them in Raleigh. The trips back to Greensboro was always sad for me. I loved Raleigh and being with my grandparents; I didn't particularly like Greensboro.

About a mile from my old home, a Howard Johnson's stood off of S. Elm-Eugene St near where it crossed over I-85 (I-40 at the time ended a mile away by Randleman Road). When my grandparents pulled off the interstate onto S. Elm-Eugene, I knew the party was over and the jig was up. I had to return to reality.

But sometimes a miracle occurred. My grandparents would ask me and my brother if we wanted to have dinner at Howard Johnson's. Of course we said "yes." By doing so, we extended our vacation and were able to spend a few more moments with my grandparents.

I don't remember much about the food there. I still hear people look back with fondness about some clam dish they had, maybe a clam sandwich. I liked their hot dogs with just ketchup. I was a finicky eater as a kid. I do distinctly remember love eating dessert: a brownie with ice cream and fudge on it.

I heard there are only one or two Howard Johnson's restaurants still operating. I know it's not the one near my old house. That placed closed around 30 years ago. I think the old building is now a Mexican restaurant.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Mad Men
Don Goes Proving Me Wrong Again

Just when I thought Don couldn't be a bigger dick, he goes proving me wrong. I won't give a synopsis of the recent Mad Men episode. I will say, though, that Don was a complete ass leaving his wife behind at a Howard Johnson's. The man has to be one of the biggest control freaks.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

The Dog Park

On my way to school, I pass by a dog-park. I see the babies, smile and then start to miss my own babies that have left me. Some of the dogs are so cute that I want to pull over, stop, and ask the owner if I could squeeze the shit out of his/her dog. Unsurprisingly, I don't do it. It wouldn't be socially acceptable.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

The Internet Has Corrupted My Grammar

For a non-literary and non-humanities type of person, my grammar wasn't that bad, that is until I started using the internet. Now, I have an overwhelming compulsion to put apostrophes at the end of every word ending in "s."

I can't explain it.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

I've Never Been Cussed Out at a Wal-Mart

But I have at Whole Foods.

 I went to Whole Foods during Thanksgiving 2008. Life was pretty glum since I had been laid off a couple of months before that, my LSAT practice scores were miserable and would most likely have to move far from NC while my dad got sicker. Getting yelled at and cussed-out at a Whole Foods gave an exclamation point to an overall shitty year.

For some reason, my cousin wanted a turkey from Whole foods. Since she lived in Knightdale and I lived in downtown Raleigh closer to that store, my family commissioned me to go get a Whole Foods Turkey, a place I rarely go.

I went to the butcher area, saw two employees behind the counter talking, laughing and giggling. They asked if I had been helped and I asked for a turkey. Unbeknownst to me was that in an aisle perpendicular to the butcher counter was a table staffed by Whole Food workers handing out numbers for customers getting turkeys. I didn't know because I approached the aisle parallel to the butcher's counter.

The butcher-staff pointed me to the number-table and instructed me to get a number. I turned right and saw a table staffed by two Whole Food employees doling out numbers: there were also two people in line waiting to get numbers.

Soon after I got in line, the first person got her number. I was now second in line. The number-giver called "next." The woman first in line stood there, still talking on the phone. Moments pass and the call of "next" goes out again. The woman still stood motionless, planted to the floor. The Whole Food workers looked puzzled and a little frustrated.

After 30 seconds, I step up beside the woman and ask her "Are you next in line?" She is livid. She was one of those big-fat woman who are the "large and in charge types." She says "What? You want to go next? Go ahead." She yelled some more and cussed some. She told the person on the other end of the line she had to go. She snapped her phone shut in a huff and stepped up to the table.

I'm glad I wasn't 20 years younger when I was super high-strung. No doubt, I would have cussed her ass out. Instead, I stood there and let herself look like an idiot. Even though I was middle-aged, I still wanted to argue with her. My better judgment told me not to. First, she was a woman. Second, she had a baby with her. There was no way I'd come out of that situation looking good. She was a nasty abusive type woman. I've seen the type many times over growing up. I felt sorry for that kid. Oh well, the kid will have  issues 20 years from now. Mothers like that keep psychologists appointment books filled.

I finally got my number. The number-givers apologized. I wasn't the only one who thought that woman was a loopty-loo.

I was reflecting about this story and thought of the irony. I've never been cussed out at a Wal-Mart but I have at a prissy place like Whole Foods. For those not in the Raleigh area, the demographic of the typical shopper there votes Democrat, listens to NPR and watches PBS religiously. In the parking lots are bumperstickers with "Coexist" or "Yes We Can".

These are the types of people who roll their eyes, snicker and look down on Wal-Mart and all things associated with Wal-Mart.

Well, the typical Wal-Mart shopper may not be the urbane and dainty types such as these Whole Food shoppers , but I've never been yelled at or cussed out in a Wal-Mart.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Impersistence of Memory

The other day, I heard some fellow students say things like "I haven't started studying yet" or "I only have a week to learn all this."

While they said this I thought to myself "If I haven't learned this by now, I'm never going to." By now, I'm fine-tuning what I do know. There is no way in hell I could cram for a law school final. I have to study at a steady drip instead of a torrential deluge.

Their young minds are like little sponges , readily absorbing everything. My mind is like an over-packed suitcase before a 2 week trip to Cancun that needs someone to sit on it while a second person zips the thing shut. I'll get it all in there but it will take more time and effort than my younger counterparts.

Put another way, their minds download  info at GHz: mine at kHz.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Archie's a Hero

Archie most likely saved Dixie's life last weekend. My brother came up from Atlanta to visit my mom for Easter and brought Dixie, the puppy I gave him for Christmas or at least 3/4, my mom paid the rest.

Archie can swim now but Dixie cannot. She sinks. My mom said she probably doesn't have her undercoat yet and subsequently gets waterlogged when she gets in the pool.

My brother had let the two babies out to play while he stayed inside. Sometime later, my brother could hear Archie barking like mad. Archie has a big-boy bark now. He no longer yaps or whines like a puppy.

Archie kept barking and barking much to the annoyance of my brother. When he went outside, he saw his girl clinging for dear life to the edge of the pool. Not only can Dixie not swim, but she does not know how to get to the pool steps to get out. My mom had trained Archie to go to the steps in the times he has fallen  in the pool. A lesson he learned well because during that time, Archie had gotten in the pool but had made it to the steps and got out.

Dixie may have drowned that day. That little boy is a hero!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

3L and Still Gunning

I was in administrative law the other day and overheard some 3L's talking about grades at length. They wanted to know if the class was graded on a curve. They were discussing Order of the Coif, cum laude and other grade related stuff.

I mean, these guys were talking about this shit like it was really important. One guy even made an implicit reference not to just his GPA but to what his overall GPA was.

I couldn't believe these guys were gunning with such intensity this late in their law school experience. My god, what were these guys like two years ago. Unbearable comes to mind.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Archie Broke My Mom's Arm

Last week while my mom was on a stool getting something in the kitchen, Archie somehow knocked by mom down. She fell on her left arm and broke it. She might need surgery. We'll have to wait a couple of weeks to see how it's doing until we know for sure.

I don't know what to do about Archie.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Apple Brought Down a Peg or Two

The other day, the news reported that over a half million Apple computers were hit by malware. That should wipe the smug smiles off of their faces. Every time a virus hits someone's PC, a Apple user will gleefully chirp "You should get an Apple."

Well, now I'm smiling.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Phone Calls During Dinner

It's amazing how indignant people get when someone calls around dinner time. They act like the caller had intruded during  the holiest of holies.  Or that the intrusion was forcefully imposed for which there was no recourse. It's as if the caller had peeked in on the couple having sex.

There is a simple remedy: DON'T ANSWER THE FUCKING PHONE!

This is especially true nowadays when technology has afforded us with caller ID, *69, answering machines and voice mail.

Screen your damn calls and keep eating.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Crossing Paths

The other day in Administrative Law, we read a case: Lujan v. National Wildlife Federation. A couple of days later in Trademark law, we read a case that cited National Wildlife Federation. How fucking awesome was that?

It reminded me of when I was a kid seeing a guest on The Love Boat show up later that night on Fantasy Island!