Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


decay & ruin
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Irving housing

got that wrong

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Like my brownhouse:
   defecating in public restrooms
Friday, January 30 2015
About three inches of snow had fallen last night, enough to justify digging out the driveway. Gretchen actually did most of that digging, and I followed up later with the ice chisel to cut divots and gashes in the slick surface of ponding ice in the driveway (something we get every winter after the drainage pipes beneath the driveway fill with ice and the water backs up). I also covered large swatches of the ice with carpet fragments, which is a good temporary solution to icy surfaces, so long as the carpet is removed before it gets trapped beneath a fresh layer of ice. All of these precautions were necessary because Gretchen's teenage poetry protégé would be coming over for another late afternoon lesson.
Meanwhile I'd managed to crank through milestones on three separate web projects and thus cleared my schedule for what we'd later do tonight.
This evening, Gretchen and I left the dogs back at the house and drove up to that crazy family compound near Palenville. The wind was strong and I could feel it pushing the Prius around as I drove us northward on the Thruway. As we approached the compound, the winds had begun to pick up yesterday's snow and fashion it into a blizzard, forming small drifts across the road.
Once at the compound, Gretchen and I hung out with just E & J of the compound and Jenny & Doug from Willow. E had bought a bunch of food from New World Home Cooking, including the green beans of "Beanghazi" fame. Mostly what I want when people get their food catered by New World is tender cutlets of seitan, and there was definitely some of that tonight. There was also an enormous amount of kale.
The big news at the compound tonight was the rescue of a skinny understated elderly dog who looked sort of like a coyote. Her name was Annie, and Jenny & Doug had actually done the rescuing and E & J were just holding her temporarily, though by the end of the evening it was decided that E & J would hold onto her indefinitely.
The evening conversations was dominated for a long time by logistical talk regarding Annie the Dog, but later Gretchen told the story of how Stephen Colbert had been with us in coach on our flight to Belize. I chimed in that I'd taken a massive shit not more than 15 feet away from him, and then the conversation took a long detour as everyone talked about where they could and could not pinch a loaf. E runs a shoe store in Manhattan, and she said that she can't do numero dos in the store's bathroom because there's always the risk that a customer will need to use it immediately afterwards. Gretchen said she could drop a deuce anywhere, and Jenny had a similar attitude, but Doug & J said they could pretty much only produce brown river cucumbers at home. As for me, I have never once unburdened myself of packets of solid entropy in a public school bathroom and now I'm only really happy doing the most disgusting thing to watch filmed backwards in the brownhouse (the most private bathroom in the world). But I've gradually become more comfortable grunting myself lighter in public places. These days I have no problem birthing a one-legged no-armed eyeless child in the Home Depot bathroom, will use even a disgusting train toilet in a pinch, and will obviously make use of an airplane bathroom, especially if I don't know what other toilet options lie in the near future. But it's unlikely I will ever do anything more than piss in the toilet in the back of a Greyhound bus.
Gretchen eventually managed to finish the Colbert story and then even told the tale of the decline of Ellen DeGeneres, which was not what any vegan ever expects to hear from another vegan about a vegan celebrity.
Another brief, but unusual turn for vegan subject matter came when Gretchen and I related a conversation we'd had earlier about how her excessive loving on Celeste the Kitten is as morally suspect as the eating of honey. Both amount to forcing animals to do something they would otherwise rather not do. Gretchen then went on to admit that if there was something she could do to Oscar the Cat to make him snugglier while also taking some years off his life, she'd do it. Such quantification of our vegan ideals, at least for humorous purposes, seemed to work with E and perhaps Doug, but Jenny is too dogmatic on this subject to entertain such ideas.
It turned out that E & J had a hot tub out behind the house and it was ready to go, so Gretchen and I were all excited to use it. By this point, Doug was suffering from a migraine headache, so he and Jenny had to go. But there were robes and towels, so Gretchen and I got naked, went out into the blowing 14 degree outdoors, and then climbed into the tub. It was so fucking hot we almost couldn't get in, but once in, it felt good, at least for a minute or so. The heat was perhaps more bearable due to all the hear being lost from my face as that 14 degree air blew across it at 20 miles per hour (or whatever it was).
I'd drunk three beers and a bunch of whiskey, so it was Gretchen's job to drive us home. It was colder and a bit less windy on the way back south.

Today I'd finished burning all the wood from the front partial tiers of the woodshed, leaving me with just two fully-stacked tiers comprising about two and a half cords of wood. It will be interesting to see how much of that I burn through in the balance of winter that remains.

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