SHOUT OUTS BABY!

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.

But Did You Die?

A couple of weeks back I kept on seeing posts about it being cold by my friends in Belize. Scoop had posted that she was freezing to which I responded that she was number one. Mind you it was a ball shrinking 30 degrees in Manhattan and we were getting some snow/sleet and it was miserable. She fessed up that she was in sweat pants.

Now before I really piss off everyone on Ambergris Caye I guess I better come clean. I too have been on the island during a ‘cold’ front and have even donned a light jacket. Mind you I was still wearing shorts and if you think for one second I had socks on under my flip flops…..awe hell no. To my buddies down there I get it, when you are used to temps in the 80’s & 90’s anything cooler and you are cold.

It all comes to what you are conditioned and used to. Back when we lived in Memphis during those lovely high humidity summers it wasn’t a big deal for us to vacation down in New Orleans during Swamp Ass summers. We moved up here and sure I am not thrilled about Nor’easters but we have gotten used to ‘brick’ cold days.

I recall when Florita A. would come to Memphis as a kid. The only time I would ever see her wearing socks was when she came to see us. Naturally she would get a summer cold and we would have to take her to the pediatrician but I get it. She wasn’t used to Southern Summer Air Conditioning going 24/7. Now she lives in Colorado and I bet her little ass is wearing more than socks!

I used to wonder what was up with Kitty and LuLu when we would meet up with them at Dale Hollow Lake. Here we are on the boat, the sun is shining and both of them are wearing bathing suits and sweat shirts. Once you get used to a climate your body acclimates to it.

So I will let it slide this time San Pedro, but I will still call you wimps when the temps get below 80.

Like I said, my nose was itching! That white stuff on my hat, that’s sleet.
That is funny!

So here is to hope that you guys down in San Pedro get a real snow storm or temps in the mid to low 60’s.

2019 in Review – What Did We Do Again?

On the back of the door in our apartment we have one of those old school calendars. We use it for scheduling shit and to make sure that we keep the dog alive with our schedules. I took a look at it this morning as I was getting the Black Eyed Peas and Greens on the stove and here is what we had to show for with Trips;

  • Geranium was away 151 days in 2019. Mind you 31 of those days were when she was in Switzerland/France. That actually made us both appreciate our time together more and take stock in our relationship which made it stronger.
  • We saw Elton John and his Farewell Tour at The Barclays
  • Got to experience The Rock And Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony. That was a killer event.
  • While Geranium was away Mr. 3 First Names & Lady Lawyer and I went to see Jose Andres at his book signing.
  • Got our Southern Redneck on thanks to BK and saw Hank Jr and Skynrd at Forrest Hills.
  • Rang in the New Year at the Barclays Center with The Strokes.
  • Oh and we had dinner at Per Se too.
  • And so that I am not a complete prick I am going to end this list that we also did some horse gambling at Aquaduct Race Track.

Regarding Trips Away, I am kind of embarrassed to divulge this to you dozen readers. I mean this list is somewhat obscene. Mind you we were able to take advantage of Geranium’s international trips and my ability to fly stand by.

  • Hung with PNG Mike, Ellie & JD in London and watched 6 Nations Rugby with them.
  • Visited Northwest Arkansas for Family Christmas
  • Made a trip Upstate with Vivian and Stone
  • Made warm weather trips to; Cancun, Belize, Fort Meyers, Gulf Shores, and Dale Hollow Lake.
  • Went over to Philly for a BBQ at Pepe’s house.
  • Got to experience Barcelona for the First Time. (Got to go back)
  • I did 48 hours in Switzerland to see Geranium and imagine that..it was raining!
  • Made it to Memphis for Thanksgiving and for a work trip in September.
  • Got to eat some low country cooking with the ChoHo’s in Charleston South Carolina.

All in all it was a good year for us for doing the fun shit. Granted I wondered why our bank account has been low but now I know why I haven’t been able to see my feet in months.

Photo by Toria of Blue Water Grill down in Belize
Charleston South Carolina with these two!
Thank God Geranium is Fluent in how to Speak Randy!
We got to go back one of these day!
I booked a whole week with these knuckleheads and I loved every minute of it!
I love this man!
Lausanne Switzerland and the snow topped alps
The rain does happen in Spain!
Oh Maya had a blast while we were away too!
Thanks Viv and Stone!
Rain in London….how odd

It was a good time for trips and shit that we saw in 2019.

Pictures of the Week – Its beginning to look a lot like Festivus

Busy time here in Gotham. The Double Decker Tour Bus business is blowing and going and all of us Ticket Sellers are busy and are ready for the madness to slow down a tad. Geranium is done with her traveling and she is going to be Brooklyn bound for a couple of weeks. I hope we make it, this could be tough for us. 🙂

We are going to stay in New York for Christmas this year since Christmas is on a Wednesday and we are not really wishing to spend over 1500 to fly home for a couple of hours. We were home for Thanksgiving and it was really a lot of fun seeing everyone and we didn’t really have to rush that much.

Anyway with that here are the pictures of the week and a couple from 2 weeks back.

So great to see Windy City Pool Buddy when she came into town.
We Decorated for the Holidays!
And we have a Tree too!
Carbunkle Cares!
Happy Birthday Ba! Thank you to all those who helped Text her and wish her a Happy 70th. Even you one sick bastard who said she deserves lots of wine for having me as a son. That shit ain’t funny Former Neighbor.
Seasoned Greetings!
The Tree at The Lott Hotel
Happy Hanukkah RAB and S(Squared) By the way it starts on Sunday at Sundown.
Rest in Peace Chuy. We will miss you!
Got us a plant that we don’t have to water and apparently it will grow on its’ own. We will kill it, I bet it!
Sister Cathy taught me 8th Grade Religion. That was 35 years ago. And she is still Rocking and a Rolling.
I know that everyone is bashing the Peloton girl but wait till Geranium opens this on Christmas Morning!

I will probably post a couple more next week so hang in there folks.

So I Hear You Paint Houses?

If you are a fan of The Godfather, Bronx Tale, Good Fellas, Micky Blue Eyes you may want to pay attention. About 2 years ago I was visiting with a client whose last name also ended in a vowel. He asked me if I had seen the new trailer for a movie set to come out in the fall of 2019. The name of the movie was “The Irishman” and the cast was going to be kick ass.

Directed by Martin Scorsese the cast includes; Bobby DiNiro, Al Pacino, Joe Pesci, Bobby Cannavale, Ray Romano, Harvey Keitel, Steven Van Zandt, Anna Paquin and many others. I mean this cast demands some serious attention. This past Easter we went over to Vivian & Stone’s house for brunch and met Welker White and her husband Damien. Welker plays John Gotti’s wife. Naturally we didn’t’ want to chat shop but she told us in so many words that it was going to kick ass.

So the movie like many movies there was a snag in production. Pretty much the backer of the movie pulled out and Scorsese sat with a half written movie for about 6 months. Then Netflix comes in and says “Blank check but you got to go with us.” The finish the movie and the plan was to have it in theaters for about a month then it will be on Netflix. Trust me because this movie is a long one.

Well the Movie Theaters get pissed so they don’t show it. What does Netflix do? The rent out the Belasco Theater off Broadway and show it there. We went this past week and it kicked ass! When it comes to Netflix watch this!

Thank you to Vivian and Stone for inviting us.

I am sorry but seeing a movie in a Broadway Theater is kick ass!
The Marquee!
Nipped from Welker’s Instagram Page
Some Movie Props in the Lobby
How cool is that!
I got a friend here who wants to talk to you!
Jimmy is Missing?
I want a bumper Sticker!
Dial that Number!
Bev Naps!

Like I said, go see this movie!

Bonus Pictures of Belize (borrowed from The Windy City Brit aka Toria)

I can’t recall all the times I have been to Belize over the years. I probably have in my storage unit in Memphis over 1000+ pictures of the island over the years. I know this is going to sound somewhat calloused but I take a lot of what Belize has for granted. Obviously there is nothing better than sitting on the dock or patio smoking a cigar while the sun comes up over the reef. I can’t get that view here in Manhattan. But I notice that I put my blinders on when I am going around town and never stop to appreciate the little things.

One thing that I always enjoy is looking at pictures of the island from other people’s perspective. You stop to glance at them from your phone and it brings you back. You remember that view of the reef from a palapa. You remember the sheer terror you had as a child when Manuel tells you to get in the water at Hol Chan while the nurse sharks are circling the boat. You then pee yourself a little when you later realize that Manuel snuck some cut up sardines into your bathing suit pockets and the yellow snappers are swarming you like mad bees! I am still not happy about that Tio Manuel. I discuss this with my shrink on a regular basis.

So this past week The Windy City Brit aka Toria has been uploading pictures to her facebook page. Let me tell you that when you are suffering from a Sinus/Upper Respiratory infection those pictures bring it all back.

I asked her if I could swipe a couple and I wanted to give my 11 stalkers some bonus pictures. @Marty Casado – Feel free to post on the Pic of the day if you like. Thank you Windy City Brit, your pictures put a smile on my face this past week.

Old Rubys on the left and the Belize Chocolate Company.
I recall when Legend’s was the place to go north of the cut. Thank God some guys said “Lets put some sea containers on a plot of land on the lagoon side. Lets make it bar and food court with a stage.”
10 years ago you were driving at full speed because the mosquitos were going to lift you off the golfcart. Now there is a great place to watch the sunset and have a beer.
I want to go back. How perfect is this?
You can almost hear the reef from here.
I can never get bored of these pictures.
Little Bungalows at Secret Beach. It has been about 4 years since I was there last
Such great people who run this joint. Oh and the food is pretty spot on too!
This was me going to the store to get food for Friendsgiving today. Do I look like I am fucking happy?

Again, thank you Windy City Brit for posting the pictures and it was great meeting you and The Movie Star.

Pics of the Week Live From Belize!

Too Many Good Pictures not to post somewhere.

You Coming or Going? The Old Veteran Jet Holland!
Oh He is getting Bouchy!
Slow Your Role Tropic! It isn’t even the 15th of November and The Tree is UP?
Such a great addition to the island. Great Staff and Owners!
If you have to have a sign then there must have been an incident.
Over Achievers!
Good to See the Bronx Representing!
Note To Self – Only get on Boats that Have Bars on them!
View North from CV
The Famous Shrimp Sticks from Blue Water Grill!
Catching Up with CNN Belize Felipe!
Geranium – Please take a picture of that for me.
Me – Ok, I will but may I ask why?
Geranium – I want to make that my signature on inner office emails.
Me – Good Call
Did you know it was his birthday?
And that he is the same age as Belikin only makes it better!
View of the Pool from CV

It was a great trip!

The “Otter is 100BZE/50US” Birthday Celebration

As previously mentioned in last weeks worthless dribble post we just returned from a quick 4 night trip to Belize. Now that I have ridden the subways with my mosquito bites and sunburn a couple of times I am ready to give a proper description of the shenanigan’s that went on down in Belize. Hate to say it but if you are one of those Lurkers I am going to disappoint you. What goes on down in San Pedro stays in San Pedro. Sorry that are the rules.

Now before you think all are safe, I am not going to lie one bit. I swallow hard every time I see that The Windy City Brit posts some pictures to the FB page thinking she took pictures of that drunk guy on Friday night. But she is a good soul and would not do that to me the person who got overserved. Small bills right T?

So let me give you some back story to this Great weekend extravaganza. About 2 and a half years I get a notification that there will be a celebration down in Belize for Otter’s Birthday. I go to the calendar to circle those dates. The dates don’t match up. I recall that Otter and I are close to the same age as we are more of the junior members of the ACMB. Then I realize that he is inviting me to an event 2 and a half years in advance. What an asshole!

That is kind of brilliant if you ask me. This way you can start saving up, schedule the dog/child sitters and look forward to a weekly update by Otter on the page. I am kidding, he would send updates for those of us who have never been or for those of us who forget a lot (Pug I am not looking at you) and it was fun to bust Otter’s chops. Granted he saw a tweet that I sent to Joe Belize that I was going to be on the island for his birthday celebration and didn’t realize that we had RSVP’d in the yes. We always wait till the last minute to book airfare and hotel accommodations.

Here is where Otter gets Mad Props;

  • He arranged for hotel accommodations at one of the resorts south of town.
  • Scheduled a boat/Snorkel/Booze Cruise for all members.
  • Arranged a mid day afternoon activity for those who needed to watch College Football.
  • He talked a 6 person band from Columbus Ohio to come down and play 2 nights and a split off band to play 2 shows. Oh and he was able to coordinate getting drums, PA and sound boards handled down there on the island.
  • He not only was able to bring some of us older (well not so much me or TravelQueen) ACMB members, Friends from Ohio and those who have never visited San Pedro before.
  • I am not even going to harp on his mad spread sheet skills. (Love ya Otter)

Here is what I appreciated from the weekend plans. Other than the Friday 8:30AM call to be on the dock for the Booze Cruise (you can’t drink all day if you don’t start early) that was really the only formal plans that you had to do. Trust me when I say that I have been places where you have to follow a ridged schedule and if you have ever hearded cats before…..

The other part that we really enjoyed and I mentioned it in an email to TacoGirl was that it was so much fun experiencing San Pedro thought the eyes of someone who has never been there. That I knew of there were threee couples who were first timers to the island. To watch them experience the island like we did made this trip even more memorable.

Happy Birthday Otter! You magnificent Bastard! I am so happy to have been able to share your 50th birthday celebration with friends and family.

This was a fun time on Friday!
Great Views with Great Friends. Also this is the “Before” picture when Mrs. Otter arranged for the deck chair that we were sitting on was to fall off the deck. Thanks to my cat like reflexes I was able to prevent falling to my demise.
The Fabulous Johnson Brothers *Photo Credit to Windy City Brit
Me to XXXX – You happen to be drooling, pull yourself together there XXXX
Funtimes at Camo Cantina
Not only is he 50 but he can sing a song or two too!
The Band on Saturday Night!
Broke my heart when they said they have menus and we didn’t have to order from the board.
Us and the Windy City Brit and the Movie Star
Love that I don’t have to look at high rises to see the sky!
We get it Otter, you are with the Band!
My Favorite Dancing Jewelry Designer
Wait, what does this mean we have an excuse to go back to the island with the same group? Congrats you two kids!

It was a fun long weekend and I am so grateful for the friendships that we already have and those that were started last weekend!

Would the Alumni Members of the Ambergris Caye Message Board Please Stand Up (if they can)

I have to start out by giving mad props to Otteralum (I know that is a rather strange code name but he gave it to himself) because that magnificent bastard just pulled off one helluva ACMB Reunion. Pugwash quit swearing at the laptop, your time will come….

So, we just returned from a trip to Belize, but let me go back in time for some of you younger stalkers of this worthless dribble. Before Tic Toc, Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, even Myspace and Friendster there was a thing called a “Message Board” Here people could come to it and ask questions about a vacation place or rant about their favorite sporting team. In this case the Message Board was for Ambergris Caye down in Belize.

For those of us who had visited the island a number of times we would chat on either threads or in mini chat. Like I said, Social Media hadn’t launched yet and there was not a lot going on. As with any group of child like adults (much like on social media) you had some ball busting, some fights, some got kicked off and so on.

I met the bulk of the ACMB (Ambergris Caye Message Board) on one of the Boogie’s in February. I want to recall it was a poker run that TacoGirl put together and IsleNutt made bracelets with everyone’s name. Needless to say it was a great trip and then Myspace moved to Facebook so sadly the message board lost steam.

So about 2 and a half years ago Otteralum put out a “Save the Date” for his 50th birthday in Facebook. I saw it was in early November and went to put it on the calendar. But something wasn’t kosher. First of all I thought that he and I were closer in age. Then I noticed that the dates didn’t coordinate with the days of the week. Did he start drinking early and forget his birthday? Nope he sent out the invite 2 and a half years in advance. Talk about an over-achiever.

Anyway a total of 42 folks came down from the US and a good number of them were from the ACMB. It was good to see some faces that I haven’t seen in a couple years. Even as Pugwash and I spoke at breakfast about todays agenda he remarked that it was probably the first time we ever were civil to each other. I told him it was because we were both still sober but Tim knows I don’t have a beef with him. He is just a big ole hairy Teddy Bear. But with a funnier accent other than mine. Love ya Pug and Jane!

I must have been in the bathroom when they took this picture. Pretty much the whole gang!
Me and Reaper (who technically doesn’t live in the States but in Costa Rica)
Me and Tia Chocolate – (the nose above picture is a staple Carbunkle Trumpet Selfie method) Nobody wants to see my whole face.
Me and Travel Queen
Me and Muppets Go Wild
The Birthday Boy aka Otteralum (his handle is a mix of his college and that he is an alum)
Fucking Spurs and Mr Spurs! – This picture automatically put a smile on my face when I saw it. It was so great to spend time with you and Bobby. Love ya Kid!
Yep even he was amongst us too.
For those of you wondering that is a shark vertebrae anklet and it was worn by KC Jayhawk. It was gifted to me by his wife because we lost Colin 4 years ago. Oh and we all still miss the big goof he was one in a million. I am not crying, you are crying.
I got you Bro!
Travel Queen and Dita
Two Former Memphians sit at the same table on a Sunday night. What are the chances.
For those of you who don’t know this is Elbert Greer and he owns the White Sands Dive Shop. Every morning he posts the weather report for San Pedro. It keeps my sanity when we are having Cold Ass Nor’easters.
She wasn’t on the island but as I am having my last beer I notice the picture of SweetJane with Jet. We got to throw her into the mix!
Love these two! Isla this summer?
Who has two thumbs and has two beautiful women by his side as we are heading in?
This Guy!

Like I said, This was a magical trip and I am so thankful that Otter invited Geranium and I to this event. Between this group of malcontents along with Otter and Mrs. Otter’s group of friends it was one helluva party. To those who couldn’t make it, you were missed.

Pictures of the Week and a Word of Pause for you Tiger Fans on Saturday Morning.

So Game Day is coming to Beale Street. Congrats to the Memphis Tigers on becoming a relevant and respected football program. Hey I recall those Larry Porter days…yikes! But seriously I am proud of those fans who have braved empty stadiums and shitty teams. You guys have earned having Game Day tomorrow and I hope you make this former Memphian proud and roll out for this!

Now for you handful of rummy’s that I may or may not have slung a beer with in the past 10 years. Game Day, if you have never seen it live, is going to be a bit boring. They will have some spots where they will interview the coach. Do a feature on Memphis and make it a tear jerker but in a good way. The Guest Picker will come out which peaks a lot of noise, and then by the grace of God Corso better put on a Fucking Tiger head. Sad to say – The rest of the show is going to be boring. Now read my words you select few – JUST BECAUSE IT IS BORING THIS ISN’T THE TIME TO GO DO IRISH CAR BOMBS OR SILKY SULLIVAN DIVERS! You are an adult now and this isn’t BBQ fest. You have a full day of football and the game is going to be late so unless you want Liberty Bowl Stadium to resemble Death Valley down in Baton Rouge…..lay off the booze till the afternoon.

You can have a beer or two in the morning. Tio Trumpet isn’t going to chastise you for having a Bloody Mary to settle the nerves. I mean you are on Beale waiting for the team pics but please add pause to your game folks. Also do us a favor and come up with some good signs for us folks who will be watching from the Cigar Inn? My buddies will be busting my balls if we give a bad look.

Seriously have fun and when the Tigers win Saturday night make sure you avoid any TV cameras. I still have vivid memory of Didi getting on the news after the UT game. He was wearing a blue pom-pon on his head saying “We kicked their ass!” Then my dad called me the next day and asked if that was him.

You got this and I expect to see some familiar faces on TV. I will actually be going to the Memphis Watch Party on Saturday night. Hey @pcolinjr – where are we meeting again? @jensized you want to get out before the marathon? Who am I kidding they don’t read this dribble. I am excited for Memphis and am happy that those friends of mine who have been enduring the Chuck Stobart years now have a day in the sun. Can you tell us hog Fans what that feels like?

Now the pics of the week.

JamFoodie and Mr 3 First Names – What was the name of this place again? I dig’d it!
Have you gotten your San Pedro Scoop Book Yet? *Shameless Plug because I expect to not have to pay for an autograph or a selfie*
And yes RC – That is a “Immigrants Feed America” T-Shirt I am wearing!
I am glad that Baseball is over. I hate Joe Buck worse than Sean Touhy
My Football Season is over so I might as well follow a winner!
Like I said, our football teams suck!
This spoke to me!
I saw this and just laughed. Could you imagine the conversation these two had. Talk about a dual headline!

So in the words of Rocky Kasaftes’ beloved Mother – “You boys don’t get into much trouble and remember my words…Nothing good happens after midnight!”

Go Tigers!