Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Eight words I should try to remember (eight words)

hey big dummy,
keep your fat mouth

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

how I got all over the news this weekend (eight words)

stood next to
a woman eating hotdogs.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Order of the Arrow (American Sonnet)

I can lay here in the clearing
flattening the long grasses
and not say a word

you know it's not really blackness if you are patient
but a forgotten wonder we've all got used to

somewhere tired men are turning wrenches
and babies are rocked to sleep
somewhere lovers, love
and somewhere fighters, fight
everyone else is watching tv shows tonight

i'm just wondering about the stars
excited for whatever is next

it's not that I'm unhappy to see you (eight words)

but that
really is
a roll
of quarters

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Now & Then

Thank God he's wearing pants these days.....
my baby...

cant fix ugly (eight words)

if looks
could kill,
you would
be harmless

Monday, May 21, 2007

the good news (eight words)

you're only as disappointing
as your latest

Sunday, May 20, 2007

wabbit (eight words)

"an interesting monster
should have
an interesting hairdo"

Saturday, May 19, 2007

No Child Left Behind

No Child Left Behind
Originally uploaded by cpurrin1.

No, Seriously (eight words)

everybody knows
you have the best
yard sales

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Heart of Gold

Liver of Lead

Falling Short of Brilliance, Again (eight words)

trying to
fuse Hydrogen
just burning

burning sun (eight words)

one more opportunity
to do
the hard things

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

we're almost happy (eight words)

what the
world needs
is another
Penguin movie

roundabout (haiku)

where are we going?
same, same, same, it's all the same
Big Ben, Parliment

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

OK, so I'm a bad person...

So I just walked into my office and on the computer I saw that Jerry Falwell had died, and involuntarily I yelled "YAY!!!" so loud that someone came into my office to see what was up.

Blaming 9-11 and Katrina on 'the gays' was the last straw for me. I'm glad this asshole is dead.

Monday, May 14, 2007

American Cancer Society Relay for Life

This weekend we went to a fund raiser for the American Cancer Society Relay for Life. It's held on the Athletic field of a local school. Participants get pledges and walk around a .25 mile track to raise money, many sleep over in tents and take turns so that people are walking all though the night.

At night, the track is illuminated with luminaries with the names of those who had past from cancer. There were thousands, and it was hard to see the walkers stop at certain candles and weep. It was a very powerful event.

This is the sister of a very popular teacher in our town. She lived in town as well and left behind a husband and children last month. Some of the student from school placed their glow necklaces around her Luminary. I think she was only in her Thirties.

I was not trying to be funny when I said to my friend:
"Pretty soon, it'll be our names on these bags"
"Better keep walking then" he replied.

What greater cause can we have?

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Broadway at the Beach Ultimate Eating Tournament

Originally uploaded by steakbellie.

So there I am in Myrtle Beach with a plate of shrimp in front of me. Those of you who know me probably assume it was a plate of one million shrimp, but it wasnt. It was twelve shrimp. Twelve medium-size peeled shrimp with the tails still on them.

Several hundred people are watching us, and I am listening to that large self-doubt voice that's inside me waiting for the contest to get underway.

"You know, anybody could eat twelve shrimp" the voice says.
"I know" i reply.

"You realize, that somebody could walk up to this table and accidently eat twelve shrimp faster than you"
"Yeah, I know..." I answer annoyed.

"I mean, you just drove 10 hours from Philadelphia through the night for this eating contest, and you've been awake for much of the last 48 hours. You're going to feel pretty stupid, if 15 seconds from now you are eliminated in the very first round of this eating contest because you didnt eat 12 shrimp very fast."
"You're not helping...."

"Especially since you're wearing a dress"
"It's a kilt, asshole"

"My Bad..."

Ryan Nerz
Originally uploaded by steakbellie.

The Emyce say "GOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!"
and the twelve professional eaters crammed at the table are eating the shrimp as fast as they can. I am stuck at the very end right corner of the table and have to stand in a maze of electrical wires feeding the PA system.

Everyone is yelling.

The round is over in 10-15 seconds and the two eaters to my left are eliminated. It's almost unfair, considering how little food there is, but those are the rules of this tournament. I'm a horrible swallower, and feel pretty lucky to finish in the middle of the pack. My mental illness makes me chew everything.

The long table is cleared and I feel better now that it's round two. I take a moment to notice the clear skies and warm sun. I look over to Wing Kong and Wild Bill, who drove down from Philadelphia with me. Thumbs up. We made it through the first round, and we dont look feel stupid.

Author Ryan Nerz is hosting this event, and he is deftly weaving backstory and fantasy into the monologue he is telling the assembled crowd. He makes us sound like SuperHeros, so it is appropriate that I have my Green Lantern T-Shirt on.

whats left of the wings
Originally uploaded by steakbellie.
There are ten eaters left, and the food choice is one of my strengths...12 Wings. I love technical food. The last four eaters to finish their wings will be eliminated. The wings are larger size and they are physically warm, which increases the tearing speed dramatically. I have so much wing practice, I cruise to a finish near the top without forcing anything down. I finally taste the Wings on the last wing...alittle spicy and really very good. A rarity.

An older woman in the crowd hands me a napkin and indicates that I have sauce all over my face. I feel welcome and consider hugging her..

The remaining unranked Pros have been eliminated and the bulk of eaters are middle ranked or better than my 39th National position. My two friends made the cut as well, and now I know the ride home wont be so would have sucked for the guy that got out early.

Originally uploaded by steakbellie.

Restaurant Staff bring out trays of four Johnny Rockets Hotdogs and Buns. They are even bigger than the Nathans dogs and about a quarter lbs a piece instead of an eighth. The key here is to finish in the top Four to move on. I'm feeling great, and have been hamming it up to the crowd abit in between rounds. Certainly I'm not yet full.

Ryan gets the crowd yelling again and the round starts. I'm burning through the dogs and can see I'm ahead of the Eaters next to me. Ryan announces that Chip Simpson from Florida has finished while I am halfway through, and I start forcing things down harder. Ryan announces Juliet Lee of Virginia is finnished second, on my second bite of the last dog. I get too excited and have too much food in my mouth to effectivly swallow, so I take a moment to take a few sips of water and smaller bites.

"Wing Kong has finished!"
This sets off every alarm in my head. There's only one spot left, and there are five guys trying to get it. I jam the last half of the dog and bun in and the announcer calls it. It was about 1:14. Wild Bill and Brickhouse Brauntsein were moments away from finishing. I like those guys and can empathize about not making the cut this time.

Chip is 6th in the World and a fantastic Eater. Two weeks earlier he had eaten 39.25 Hotdogs in twelve minutes in a Nathans Qualifier. He's got monstrous capacity, and is mentally a tough competitor. Juliet is a Mom from Virginia, who was discovered as an eating talent last summer at an Amatuer Pizza eating contest in Maryland. She's only about 100lbs and ate more than many of the pros that day, and has been invited to many contests since. In that short time she has beaten quite a few good eaters and I have to say...who can be tougher than a Mom???? We meet her husband and daughters, who are wonderfully cheering for their Mom and video taping the event. Wendy and Family were actually at that fateful pizza contest last summer!

Wing Kong and I are just acouple of lucky Jackasses who showed up for some fun, and possibly something to eat. (Actually we trained our asses off, but pretend all of this came easy to us)

Originally uploaded by steakbellie.

Ryan Nerz announces a rule change. For the Deep Dish Pizza Round, the two minute limit will be lifted. The remaining four Eaters will have to eat ALL 3 Personal Pizzas. (Later the chef will tell me that each was made to be 2lbs a pie)...SIX lbs of Pizza! The first two Eaters to finish move onto the last round. Now I wasnt full at this point but it was pretty clear to me that there's very little chance I'd be able to finish the pizza easily.

I'm certain Chip can finish, I think Juliet has a good chance of finishing, I know the real contest will be between me and Wing Kong....It's a long ride home.

The race starts and I keep neck and neck with Chip for two bites. I start to slow through the first pizza as it hits my stomach like rubble falling to the earth. I'm sweating from distress now and look over at Juliet and Wing Kong. We're pretty close when we start the second pie.

Chip finishes the pizzas sometime in the 4 minute mark (sorry Chip if I have that wrong) I can see Juliet is suffering, but somehow she keeps eating. To my surprise, I'm a slice ahead of Wing Kong. Everytime he takes a bite, I take one too. Julliet trudges through the third pie and finishes it when I am pretending to start it. It must be 8 or 10 minutes in when the round is over.

The crowd is very gracious to us, and I am greatful to have placed Third! So grateful, I point it out to anyone who will listen (in front of Kong)

Final Four
Originally uploaded by steakbellie.
The last round between Chip & Juliet is cruel. 5 small Rita's Water Ice (cherry) Both of them visibly cramping and grimacing from Brain Freeze. Chip wins, but Juliet takes the crowds hearts. Everyone is impressed.

This was probably the most I've ever eaten. If you ever find yourself THAT full, it's a good idea to walk around and drink some water. Dont get in a car and drive 10 hours...nope I dont recommend that....

So whats next?
Hotdogs.......well actually not for another month or so...Kettle Bells and Running...Kettlebells and Running....tired of being a fatass...

doing the simple things (haiku)

It could happen here
Doesnt have to be Charlotte
But you never know....

Monday, May 07, 2007

the creepy old man in the locker room (eight words)

doing everything but
putting his clothes back on

Friday, May 04, 2007

indistinguishable days (American Sonnet)

juxtaposed forces working against each other have bound up the works
we're still burning fuel, but nothing nothing gets done
i could turn the damned thing off and get the same result

everything groans under heavy torsion
yet the machine does not produce a thing but rust and grime

you can feel the tension if you come close
just watch where you put your fingers
teeth break from blackened gears and sudden shifts spook me

when this baby finally lets loose again
then you'll hear that old flywheel sing

i remember when it was new
and still had the stickers on it

yup, i'm gonna find that sabot

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Lagrangian Point (eight words)

just enough
to keep misery in balance

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

How I lost money in the Market

Originally uploaded by steakbellie.
Horrible Horrible Day
Things broke. Things that I thought were fixed, apparently were not. Problems on every project front, and emotional people wanting answers.

At lunch I went for a quick walk down Market St to ease my mind. The wind was wiping about in funny directions between the tall office buildings. I reached into my shirt pocket to get my ipod, and a folded ten dollar bill fell out.

What was curious was that it never fell fell up 6 feet fluttering out of my reach. A man sweeping the sidewalk watched me jump to catch it. The Ten Dollar Bill Fluttered out over the six lanes of traffic and continued to rise. I tried to anticipate where it might start to fall.

It was EXACTLY like when you're a kid and you let go of a balloon. There's just nothing you can do but wish you had grabbed the string. Within 60 seconds it was so high that it was becoming difficult to see. At this point it dropped onto the roof of the 8-story Philadelphia Stock Exchange.

I looked around me to see if anyone else had seen this fantastic event. The guy with the broom said simply "Guess you werent meant to have it."

Best thing that happened to me all day.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007