Painting With Shotguns XXI

Clickety-clack, bluh-boom!

Ahem. Or something.

What I’m trying to say is, hey, look, it’s another edition of that thing where I paint the walls with the brains of many topics, and see what pieces of information stick.

I do it every week, c’mon. You knew it was coming.

Though it’s really starting to smell in here. All these flies. Phew.

Slowly, I Gain Power

The Mantid Tangle See that photo? Right there? C’mon. Don’t make me point. The one with the little baby mantis buglets. Right.

Well, if you click here you’ll see a book, and that book is called The Field Guide To Insects, Explore The Cloud Forests, and it represents my first official photo credit. A while back, the author said, “Hey, I’m doing this book about insects, and if you let me put this photo in it, I’ll give you a bunch of copies of the book,” and I was like, “Sure, whatever,” and I get emails like that all the time and they never really manifest into anything.

Except, boom. I got a box the other day, and in it sat three copies of what is genuinely a holy-fucking-shit beautiful book. It’s all pop-up and thick pages and lovely book odor. You can open these little pockets and build your own paper insects. It’s rad as fuck.

So, I’m happy to be in that book.

Thanks to the author, Paul Beck.

Speaking Of Awesome Power

Photochop: Messy Hipster Hair I’m warning you.

I’m totally going to do a blog post about my beard.

Beards are fucking powerful, and I want to instruct you on the ways of harnessing your beard to be successful. And don’t think I’m talking just to the men. Oh, no. Ladies, you can steal power from the beards of your lovers, or you can wear killer fake beards, or you can grow your own with proper application of intense hormone therapy. Or, I mean, you just might be Italian.

Boom! Snap! Sick burn on the Italian ladies.

Sorry. Don’t get mad.

Breathe easy.

Try to hurt me, and my beard will protect me.

Anyway. More on Beard Power soon.

Work It, Yeah, Nnnngh, Work It In And Out

The Pen Work is equal parts “awesome” and “terrifying” right now.

It’s awesome because I feel well-placed for future awesomeness. Even if one out of the three things I have cooking finishes up and is launched into the world, I’m good. Novel is getting shopped. TV show is in the “pilot scripting” phase. Film script is looking good. The other elements on that are jostling for position.

Problem is, I don’t have any fresh projects that will pay me right away. Or even soonish. I just got paid for a project, and I’ve a couple payments still lining up. I don’t want this year to become the “feast or famine” year, though.

So, again goes the clarion call:

I need work.

You need something written, you contact me.

Send up a flare. Shoom!

Slap me in the face. Crack!

Fire a tranq dart in the meat of my cheek. Thwip!


Whatchoo got, Internets?

Chicken Borbey, The Time-Traveling Meal

Alcoholic Chicken, Part Two So, I went ahead and made another of those recipes out of that 1950s cookbook (Bucks Cooks: The Artists’ County, A Gourmet’s Guide To Estimable Comestibles, with Pictures).

I made a little something called “Chicken Borbey.”

I can find no mention of this anywhere else on the Internet, which is rare. It’s like I found one of the Internet’s blind spots. I could climb into that dark pocket and live there, unseen by the rest of society. I found a loophole. A cubby hole. I own you, Intertubes. I own your shit.


This, then, is Chicken Borbey:

3 cups cooked and chopped chicken, butter, 4 TBsp chopped mushrooms, 8 TBsp cream, one slice of ham per portion, paprika, 3 oz. sherry, and toast.

Basically, you cook the chicken, mushrooms and cream together.

Then in a separate pan you sear the ham (which you sprinkle with paprika) on both sides, and put in the sherry, and let it reduce into a thick sauce that covers the ham.

Then you mix any remaining “sauce” with the chicken conglomeration, and toss in a pad of butter.

I had to change a couple things. I put in salt and pepper because… well, you need to season your food, people. I didn’t have sherry, so I used dry vermouth. The toast I used (not actually a part of the ingredient list in the book, but still mentioned in the prep) was English Toasting Bread. I’d never heard of such a thing, but it tastes unmercifully fucking delicious. It’s like soft pizza dough formed into a bread loaf. Procured from Fresh Market, if you care.

Anyway, the recipe looked pretty dismal on the plate, but I must say, it did taste pretty spectacular.

The one real issue? It’s a bitch to eat. Hard to cut, hard to pick up in your hands, just meh when it comes to the recipe’s construction. Were I to try this again, I might actually do it as a whore-derve appetizer thing. Little crostinis with little slices of ham and a dollop of the chicken and mushroom mixture. One bite. Chomp. Num.

Dear Haters, New Rule

Mister Badmonkey and the Cymbals of Doom Hey, Lost haters. I see you over there. Stinking up the place.

New rule: you get cranky about the shit I like here in my space, I’m going to walk into your house, point at the things you have there, and tell you how much I hate them. Painting on the wall? DVD on the rack? Wife? Child? I’m going to say, “I hate this,” or perhaps, “This sucks.”

And then I’m going to take a crap in your garbage disposal. Which sounds harmless, because it’s a garbage disposal. But go ahead. Turn it on. I dare you. Turn it on.

Don’t be rude. I’ll eat a lot of fiber. Prunes and what-not. I will. I’ll do it.

What I’m saying is, be a fountain, not a drain. Or I’ll shit in your sink.

Oh, and why is there a picture of a cymbal monkey?

Okay, you got me, I really dunno.

I just figure, hey, monkey with cymbals! He’ll back me up.

Ain’t that right, little guy?

Ook-ook, indeed.

(Oh, and winky smiley-face and all that, lest anyone think I’m actually going to come and void my bowels somewhere in your kitchen.)

Linkity-Links, Says The Sphinx

No, I don’t know what that means. You shut up.

Anyway. I got a ton of shit for you to look at, so, y’know, go look at it.

  • Something about this website — The Crying Wife — makes me upset and uncomfortable, even as I laugh a little. It’s just… well. Just go there.
  • Every week, I think I find a new Best Thing On The Goddamn Internet, and this week is no different. I give unto you: AXE COP. This just makes me happy to read it. Basic gist: five-year-old kid narrates a story, and his 29-year-old — brother? Father? I dunno — draws it. It’s awesome. Axe Cop. Fuck yeah. (My only complaint is I have a hard time navigating the site.)
  • Such elegance in story-building. John August. Ten things to do with index cards. Yes.
  • Godin asks: you a hunter, or are you a farmer?
  • I never linked to this because I was away, but it’s time to change that: Video Games and Boobs. Brilliant because it features talking goddamn eggplants. Eggplants. Rick Carroll has a diseased brain, and you should all have a taste before he finally succumbs to whatever mind parasite is eating his thoughts.
  • Will Hindmarch’s Escapist article is up: Curiosity Killed the NPC. I love this, because I think it takes a serious and honest look at how we actually feel about the protagonists we play, and about the choices “we” make as that character. I don’t necessarily believe that all game designers are really clued into this. Will is, though.
  • The Lost writers room before the finale, from 5 second films.
  • Doyce talks about diving back into your work after a break. Useful stuff — go read. He also has the best image over there, which involves snakes, tigers, and a train.
  • A reminder that I still rock the Tumblr page, and if you go there, you will see a particularly bad-ass trailer for Bioshock 2. There you’ll also find the Banksy image (or one of ‘em) from Park City (Sundance) when I was there.


  • As we discussed yesterday, hate is a very strong word and I abused it mightily in discussing Lost. I don’t dislike Lost anywhere near to the degree I dislike people who don’t use the lights on their cars properly. Not using turn signals, keeping lights off when it’s getting dark out, indicating a lane change in one direction before swerving in another – these are a few of my favorite things. TO HATE.

    • I don’t hate those people. I pity them. I pity them because I wonder, “How much does it hurt to have my foot lodged in their colon?” That’s sad for them. My boots aren’t long, but they’re wiiiide.

      — c.

  • The Insect book is effing cool. COOL. How proud are you right now and how many times did you squee like a girl?

    Buy some sherry. Don’t buy cooking sherry. It sucks. Buy some dry sherry and some cream sherry to have on hand in the house. Cook with the dry sherry, and drink the cream sherry. Use a tiny glass so you can feel all snooty.

    Use a Welch’s Flintstones jelly glass if you wanna feel all hipster ironic.

    I agree with Josh about the lights on cars, but I want to add my hatred of those who use their high beams and do not turn them off when approaching other cars (especially when they go around a curve. Did no one read their drivers’ ed books?).

    • Sherry hasn’t ever been in my pantry, so I’ll take a gander at getting some dry to start with.

      I will say, the vermouth worked in that recipe, at least.

      Regarding the “high-beam” fuckfaces — this is one of the reasons I enjoy driving my wife’s Forester. The thing has high-beams that are as bright as the sun. They burn the eyes out of oncoming drivers. They shear cars in half with their luminous laser light. So, if some knobcock comes driving up and doesn’t turn his beams down, I just give him a taste of his own medicine, except my LIGHT BULLETS are brighter than his.

      Pyoo pyoo!

      I make that noise as I murder their retinas.

      — c.

    • Oh! And the INSECTS book is super-cool. Very excited and privileged to be included.

      I wish I had kids so I could give ‘em the book.

      As it stands, I have to give it to the dogs and just let ‘em gnaw on it.

      — c.

  • Thanks for the link-up, Chuck. Of all the articles I’ve written, that is… did I just say up-chuck?

    Your name is rife with comic potential.

    I don’t know if it’s your thing, but I have seen a bunch of anthologies for the coming year with cutoff dates in late March or April, but I don’t know how respectable they are or what their rates are like: I don’t have the experience to know which pubs are good and bad yet. After I get my tender butthole loving plunged by money-eyed suitmonsters, I’ll know. I think I am losing track of the point, though.

    Congrats on being a published purveyor of picturesque peculiarities, partner!

    • If you have links to said anthologies, I’ll take ‘em. If I can’t use them, other writers here might be able to!

      Short stories are a tricky market. They rarely pay well enough to be worth the time, much as I wish they were. Further, because you get so few eyeballs on them (in my experience), they’re not great audience-builders either.

      And yet, they’re good to hone your craft.

      — c.

  • One, that book is going on my wish list, beautiful!!

    Two, WTF is it with people feeling the need to tell you how the things you like suck? I get that ALL the time. Like, sometimes multiple times a day. That’s why I wrote up a list of rules for how to be a dude, not a dick.

    Thanks for the links – that article by Doyce is timely for me today. And crying wife? holy crap, I almost don’t think that can be real. Then again, I’m that rare woman that eats babies and laughs as their pure blood runs down my jaw, dripping onto my teats, their young flesh stuck under my claws.

    • Points for that Facts of Life reference in your post, Stoney.

      Big points.

      In fact, imagine that I am in return singing to you the theme song to Golden Girls.

      And Doyce is frequently timely with awesome motivational goodness.

      — c.

  • Chuck? Can we just “rap?” you know, break it down to the basics? I just want to thank you for being a friend. I mean, we’ve traveled down the innertubes and back again. Your heart is true, you’re a pal and a confidant.

    But don’t think I’m going to go crazynuts on a gift at your party, because have you not been paying attention to this economy? Then again, it reminds me of back in the old world. Picture it: Sicily, 1922!

    (I think I just had a stroke…)

  • Here ya go Chuck, a link to a 2010 speculative fiction spreadsheet thing I found

    Thank you for being a friend. It’s not many people that would take the good, take the bad, and travel down the road again. You’re heart is true, you’ve got the world in the palm of your hands. All you’ve got to do to get you through is throw a party. Invite everyone you know. You would see the facts are life are all about you.

  • Thanks for the link, there, sir. That article could be way better.

    John August’s note cards post came just in time to tell me I was doing it right, as I’m using them on the script I’m writing right now. The confidence boost that came from that, silly as it may be, was super valuable. “I did it right!” (In other words, “Whew!”)

    • All articles could be way better. Stories, too. Films. Games. Etc. Few things achieve Truly Great status, but that article is Truly Good, or perhaps Great but without the Truly. Or something. I’m just saying, I liked it a lot.

      And I plan on putting the John August Notecard Brilliance into play next week, when Writing once more becomes Rewriting.

      — c.

  • Congrats on the insect book – looks pretty darn neat! And more 1950’s cooking! Yum. (Feel free to send some over at anytime. :P)
    Hope to watch LOST episode tonight!!!! Woot! (Hubby dislikes it so I wait to see when he’s gaming online with the buds. :P)

  • February 4, 2010 at 4:01 PM // Reply

    I promise not to spray man-hate all up in your business from now on. It was hardly my intention to anger the Gods of TV land to begin with. Please except this imaginary fruit basket as an offering. Gratz on the book! I’m going to go cry in a corner, now, and cut myself. (Also I have an urge to install a shit-guard on my disposal unit…)

  • Don’t listen to him: when it doubt, McGyver it.

    D-I-Y Shitgard Mark VI:

    Materials Needed:
    1 Ripe Grapefruit
    2 Dozen Marbles
    1 Tea Strainer
    8 Knee-High Socks with Weeping Willow design
    1 80mb MFM Hard Drive
    2 Issues of American Cinemetographer from the ’80s
    1 Roll of Blue Duct Tape
    18 feet of Charmin (2 Ply)
    1 Thermonuclear Device

    Process: Set up one small-yield thermonuclear device near your garbage disposal. Set the dial to the “KABOOM” position. Gather the other materials to keep yourself distracted during the countdown. Void where prohibited.

  • I stepped away from Lost after (spoilerish?) John in a Box season ender.

    I fully plan to return, just when it’s over. My Lost watching partners were steeped in the hate. I remained intrigued, but decided to step away until the series ended for the sake of my marriage.

    Oh, and word-up to the bearded! Beards, of course, rule.


Speak Your Mind, Word-Nerds