English Mike is the MAN

The Decade in Review

I know that this post is a couple of weeks late. I have been kinda busy and add to that Geranium has been working at my creative desk…….#herfault

So I started jotting down all the events that have occurred in the past 10 years. I was filling up a Legal Pad I realized HOLY FUCK! We have done some major shit in the past 10 years.

Without further adeau and in no certain order are some highlights, difficulties, not so great moments. I look back on this list and I see things that have defined us. I chose that certain quote about the windshield vs rear view mirror for a reason. Without further adeau;

  • CBT was “fun-employed” for a bit – Let me tell you there really isn’t much fun in that. Mind you it was 10 years ago but as I look back it was the greatest thing that happened to me. I will elaborate on this later.
  • CBT became a Carnie for Memphis in May and lived to tell about it. I tell people up here what I did that spring they still can’t believe it. It taught me a lot. Most importantly I learned that one should always have a nickname and periodically yell “Go For Robo” when answering a call.
  • Geranium went back to cleaning bedpans. I joke when I say that she was asked to come back after she came down to the river and hung out with me as a carnie. That was true by the way. This also was a good thing for our progressive movement.
  • CBT went to work for AMF/HW. Yep I needed to get off the streets and I found a little nitch for myself and we made a little money and had some fun too. In all seriousness God Bless Ernie and Lynn Mellor for taking a chance on me. I will always be in your debt.
  • English Mike/Claire, RJ/Mal-O-Rie, & Mr. 3 First Names/VQ all got hitched in the past decade. What is important about this stat is that we now have a full basketball team roster of kids. More kids to help us when we get older.
  • Geranium got diagnosed and Then kicked the ever loving Fuck out of Cancer. Let me just say that not all superheroes get to wear capes. Since then we sadly have some friends of ours join this club too. This also defined us and put things in perspective.
  • Geranium decides to not only get an Undergrad but then a Masters in Bed Pan Cleaning. I have told her that there is no reason for her to go get her Doctorate or Juris Doctorate. Her ass is done with text books.
  • Carbunkle Trumpet completed his first and only 1/2 Marathon. Again, if my knees could bend backwards I would kick my own ass.
  • After many years of owning a bar in South Bluffs we pulled off a Ponzi Scheme and moved to the core of Downtown Memphis. Yep we had to get RJ/Mal-O-Rie’s house sold, then they bought ours and we got the condo. God Bless Ponzi Scheme Pawn JL for believing a bunch of strangers at the pool that one day. *Disclaimer – I don’t have good nickname for her so this will work till I come up with one*
  • Geranium gets her a Job in New York City! What can I say, we like it up here. We probably are going to stay for a little more while. Anyway we haven’t seen all the dive bars in all 5 boroughs.
  • I get a job seeing Double Decker Bus Tickets to Tourists. Ironic that I had to move to New York to get this job.
  • New Job (again) for Geranium – She left cleaning those bed pans to working for a company that would make the cleaning solution for the pans.
  • Move from the UES to Crime-Free Brooklyn – Let me tell you, if it wasn’t for Maria we may still be unboxing those damned boxes. Moving in New York sucks!
  • Stamps are getting put on our Passports – Truth be told we chose to move to New York so that we could take advantage of cheaper and direct flights to foreign lands. We really have enjoyed this.

We look back for a moment and are very grateful for our past experiences. Some of those experiences without a doubt has made us move forward.

Always look forward folks, always forward.

4 Trips Around the sun living in the Empire State

Last week I got one of these notifications that 4 years ago that it was my last board meeting at HW/AMF. I started to think to myself that time has flown by. It was just yesterday that we were hanging at the South Bluffs pool having our Friday board meetings and the Horners only had 1 kid.

Looking back over the past year it has been a whirlwind with Tons of Travel. In no particular order;

  • St. Louis for Missy & Kristina’s Wedding (September)
  • Northwest Arkansas for Hogs/Bama Football weekend (October)
  • Geranium made 3 trips to Japan, Germany, Spain and France
  • She also has made a bunch of trips to Seattle. Either she really loves the Starbucks coffee and flannel or she has a side piece over there. Oh wait her new momma is domiciled there.
  • Memphis for Christmas
  • Northwest Arkansas for Family Christmas (January)
  • London for a Quickie Weekend (February)
  • Weekend Trip to Cryder Hollow (March)
  • Quickie trip to the Fun Side of the Wall before Geranium headed to Switzerland (April)
  • Geranium headed to the land of Swiss Army knives for a month.
  • Trip to Barcelona over BSMF weekend to see Geranium
  • Trip to Geneva over WCBCC weekend to see Geranium
  • Trip to the Redneck Rivera to hang with the Horner’s and their 2 kids.

We also made our yearly pilgrimage to Per Se for Christmas. We made a trip to Philly for a Christmas party and had some fun times with our friends over the past year too.

Back when I had longer hair and there wasn’t any grey in there either.
Barcelona!
London with this guy!
Got to see the Parade thanks to Zsquared
A little Phil Collins
Selfie at the Bridge
Swiss Alps!
Glad we knocked that one off the list. Not like Oaklawn at all.

It is still the best decision moving up here we ever did.

Pictures of the Week…And Last Week Too!

*Disclaimer – I am preloading this on Wednesday night so next week my stuff will be more current.

Hey Nice Graffiti!
We sat at the bar and watched Skillet do this for about 30 minutes. My question was – “How the F Did he get there and how did he get off?”
I took this pic because the beer was good at the Mead festival!
A Gin Tonic and a Guinness? They have Irish bars in Switzerland? Yes they do!
Meant to show this to Mr. 3 First Names on Tuesday night.
Love me this dive bar. They have The Queen on the wall!
This won’t hurt will it?
Alabama and their abortions – This is my retort.
The Half Head CBT/Geranium Selfie!
Taco Girl. I got you a bouquet of balloons.

Have a good Memorial Day Weekend!

Some Pictures of London

I have been remiss in posting these so here is a bonus Post Presidents Day entry for you 15 readers. We had a blast in London and hopefully we will be doing something like this again in the near future.

Regarding London, it was great seeing PNG Mike and Lady E as well as Lord Jimmy and his parents and seeing Vegas JD was a bonus too.

Had no idea that the Landlord has such a following here in London.
Parliament they seem to have some issues much like we do. To quote Jimmy’s father “Please don’t impeach Trump, if you do then we will be the only assholes with issues!”
I think that I have drank some Gin with picture of that fella on it
Sure you can always get a selfie of Buckingham Palace but can you get a bird to stop in mid flight for a Photo Bomb?
10 Downing Street or Number 10 depending on who says it.
Man I have smoked a bunch of this man’s cigars.
I know some people from Whitehall!
Hey Look Kids, Big Ben, Parliament….and Fucking Cold ass Rain!
Too bad we didn’t get to see Master A as we were told he is over 6 feet tall.
Driving on the other side of the street can confuse you

Oye Ceras, por favor, no te bajes la pierna. Es considerado grosero por los estándares de inglés.
I passed on the Ribs at Harrods
Always loved Peter O’Toole
As I have heard that the Angel of Darkness has fallen ill, I am wishing I saw this show while we were there.

It was a great time and we will be back!

6 Nations Rugby & Sunday Funday in Big Smoke

You might as well add another sporting event that I have been exposed to that you can drink like a fish, and cheer for the home team! I recall one summer I was down in San Pedro Belize while World Cup was being played. Mexico was playing that afternoon and the entire town came to a halt to watch the match. As luck would have it while we were in London we were going to be in town for England National playing the Irish team. You could tell that on Saturday it was game day because the pubs were busy.

For those of you who care, the teams that make up 6 Nations are; England, France, Ireland, Italy, Scotland, and Wales. To understand the game it is similar to football but without helmets or pads. Oh and unlike College or Pro the place kicker is actually the person who scores the touchdown (I don’t know the proper name) and they don’t have to rely on someone who has one job. I like it already

Papua New Guinea and Lady E met us up for some pints and we were also lucky enough to have a drink with JD from Las Vegas. We enjoyed some light fare and many pints that afternoon and had a great visit. Oh and it was a bonus as England won handily and they were chanting that they wanted Clemson next.

Sunday we headed over to China Town to see Jimmy’s Mum & Pop and enjoy some good Chinese food with questionable rude servers. After our meal we walked around and checked out some of the museums on a Sunday. Not a bad way to spend the weekend catching up with good friends. I told my boss on Tuesday “I know you will find this odd but we have some friends who live in England.”

PNG Mike took no expense and got us a nice table to watch the match.
Sorry Ladies, we are both taken.
Lady E is going to break some hearts. Of course Tio Robo and Uncle Mike will make sure that any suitors will be properly vetted
Pro Tip – Go watch this with people who know the game and it will be more enjoyable.
Hanging With Lord Jimmy and his mum. Pop is taking the picture
This one is for you Nova
He is really standing on a bar stool.
Getting ready for the New Year
Royal Academy of Arts
Anyone recall Doctor Bob. This is very similar

It was great seeing everyone and thank you for taking time out of your weekend to spend time with us. You are welcome to our joint on this side of the pond anytime.

A Trip Harrods – The Mecca of Mall Food

Sunday afternoon after hanging with Jimmy’s Mum & Pop we decided we wanted to make a run over to the local Mall of Memphis London. You know I am talking about….Recall back in the day when the only way you could get a Chick-Fil-A Chicken Sandwich was a visit to the Mall? I mean where else could you get your Hot Topic and Spencer’s crap and then enjoy some chocolate chip cookie? And if you wanted to go ice skating this place was it.

London’s version of the Mall of Memphis is a place called Harrods in the East end of London. We took the Tube over to Knightsbridge and took a visit to the food hall. If you don’t know what Harrods is all about you can read up about it here. You have seen all those signs that read “If we don’t have it, you don’t need it.” Harrods is just that store. Upon entering the hall, you realize that this place doesn’t mess around.

I am going to leave it now up to the pictures but if I ever won the lottery, I would be heading there for meals at every one of their 24 restaurants. That beats the shit out of the Mall of Memphis doesn’t it?

The Oysters weren’t bad
Salmon en Croute
Anyone for some Kobe Striploin?
Sam, I bet your buddy gets this doesn’t he
They have their own Hot Dish
The Main Floor
Not a bad day spent in the Food Court

Now show me a Mall food court that can beat this one? I dare you!

Happy Chinese New Years and a couple Milestones for us too!

Note to self, when you think that you can make a quick trip across the pond to England for a long weekend at my age it is going to hurt. If you didn’t know; I headed out last Thursday night to hang out with Mary Louise for the weekend in London. She was finishing up a whirlwind trip of her own and had a meeting yesterday with her people. I got home last night and naturally (it is 3AM Eastern Time as I type this) the jet lag is strong when you get older. Enough about me, lets get to the title of this worthless dribble.

Happy Chinese New Year as this is the year of the Pig. We were in the Chinese section of London on Sunday having lunch with friends and they were all decked out for the big party. I keep saying I am going to go down to Chinatown and see the festivities. Maybe if they are doing it this weekend I will head over there.

So Happy 3 and a half year anniversary to us for ripping off the band-aid and moving to New York. It really has flown by and even though her ass will be getting on a plane in about 2 hours Geranium would agree with me. Again, I am not dogging Memphis, but we really like living up here. We have slowed down a tad on our exploring the city we still find it great and are enjoying ourselves. I mean could I really have flown to London for a long weekend Thursday night after working and will be back to selling tickets in Times Square today? Got to love direct flights.

Another anniversary that I am particularly proud of is that 12 years ago Mary Louise and I went Tobacco Free. We decided to quit the Tuesday after the Super Bowl and we did it together. Copenhagen and Virginia Slims Menthol started losing money on us 12 years ago and even though we both gained enough weight to support another child it was the best decision that we could make. So to all of you who are battling your demons keep up the fight. People ask me if I miss dipping. Who are you fucking kidding? Sure I miss it but I don’t miss having my gums scraped or the chance that I could get mouth or gum cancer.

I will post more about the trip to London, I have a ton of pictures that I took sober(ish) and will recap later this week. Happy Chinese New Year, Happy “half” Anniversary of being New Yorkers and Tobacco Free to us!

“What Part of Texas You from Kid? Oh You are From Memphis, I have been To Nashville!”
I bet my friends from Indy didn’t draw a sober breath that night. Or the many days following that night.
Proud of this!

Have a good week, even if it is Tuesday!

Where Have You Been and What Are You Doing This Weekend?

Apologies to my 14 readers, I have been kinda busy as of late. Mary Louise and I had some friends in town and went out to ABC Cocina to have lunch with them on Saturday. We hadn’t eaten there and we had a great time catching up. That evening we went back into the city and had dinner with the Landlord at a Little Italy establishment. Sunday Mary Louise headed out on the road and is in Spain for a couple days. Then she goes to France for a couple more days. Then she finishes up in London this weekend. 

Because I am such a humanitarian I decided to head across the pond on Thursday night to hang with her over the weekend. Granted because she has her a nice hotel room in Westminster close to the Thames river doesn’t suck. As of now we have plans to see Papua New Guinea Mike on Saturday and The Thompson’s on Sunday. Other than that we are going to wing it. 

Got my teef polished last week and good news! No Cavities!
Also got the Shoes polished too! This is UWS Holly’s favorite place!
He is wearing my skull cap!
Anyone Getting ready for Lent and those great Corny Lenten Jokes
For you who are keeping score

I will keep you posted!

Bar 595 and Having Fun With Telemarketers

You probably have heard of Bar 595 if you live in Memphis. You probably have drank a beer out of one of the Coozies. You probably have seen a Bald Guy from England post pictures of the coozie all over the world. Still don’t know what I am talking about? Do a search for Bar 595 on Facebook and you can figure it out. 

It is rare that my personal foam rings. Normally when it does it is either a doctors office confirming my upcoming appointment or a telemarketer. Since I keep the 901 area code phone it is pretty easy to tell who is a real call or who is a telemarketer. I have to give them credit, they mask the number to make it look like it was my number missing a digit or something like that. 

So the other day when the phone rang I answered with my traditional “Go for Carbunkle Trumpet” and the caller was asking for the owner of Bar 595. For whatever reason I decided I would play along instead of saying that I was busy and to remove my number from your fucking list. I said that I was but I was kinda busy and to hurry it up. They were telling me about their credit card solutions and if we were interested in changing vendors.  I said I was all for it and have a rep come by tomorrow after my lunch rush. 

I bet that the staff at HW/AMF miss me and my mad Telemarketer messing with Skills
I got him back from when he gave me a shout out on the airplane to Vegas, to Belize and last years return trip to Memphis at Christmas. “They are going to be more lit than the Christmas Tree!”

English Mike I may give them your number next time. 

Man Time Flies

One of the only redeeming qualities of Facebook these days is the “On this date” part where you can see what you posted on this day for up to 10 years. On the 5th year of this past week we were across the pond for our good Friend’s wedding. Yep Papua New Guinea Mike and Claire were married 5 years ago this past week. Naturally we wished him congratulations and a text thread started with a couple of the boys. I didn’t want to remind anyone but in the past 5 years the following have occurred;

  • RJ & Mallory sell the Flophouse to Jenna
  • We sell 595 to RJ & Mallory
  • We then move to New York to drink with the Asian Fireman & Mr. 3 First Names and be an hour from Pepe.
  • RJ & Mallory go to +2
  • The Asian Fireman and the Real Estate Tycoon can’t be outdone and go to +3
  • Pepe and D3 go to +1
  • PNG Mike – MAKE SURE THAT CLAIRE DOESN’T DRINK THE WATER!!!!! Mrs. Trumpet has been drinking bottled water for the past 5 years.

734287_10151619122299928_599437964_nKegs and Eggs with the Lads. See all those Dark Liquid Glasses that are in front of everyone. That is English Coffee.

IMG_2766Right after that the Bar decided it was “Last Orders” because the Americans were swinging an invisible jump rope.

482274_10151634510739928_890101125_nIf you see this man and he says “Lets do a shot” you run like hell!

554896_10151634511129928_1783965562_nOh Look PNG Mike “Iced” down some beer for us.

526799_10151634511054928_1136011644_nMike and Clarie’s English Garden – We will put in an outdoor bar at the fenceline!

555064_10151634511259928_589787889_nI am only posting this so that the Asian Fireman and his wife can save it and we can torment Wee Fiona when she gets older and starts to date.

10554965_10152729330539928_1140361562_nBack when all 3 of these boys weren’t procreating.

I think that we need a return trip to Big Smoke soon. Anyone up for a field trip?