Cock-A-Doodle-DON’T!

I was flipping through the channels last night and found Ghostbusters on Nickelodeon. I hadn’t seen this movie in years, and I have a well-professed admiration for Bill Murray, not to mention a fascination with ghosts, so my immediate reaction was, “Score!” Unfortunately, we’d missed the first 37 minutes, so after watching for a little while I switched channels. Audrey informed me at that point that she had never seen Ghostbusters before.

Have you seen a TV show or movie where the character is drinking a beverage, and is so shocked by something he hears that he ends up spitting the liquid from his mouth in a comical, exaggerated spray? That was me last night! Or, more accurately, it would have been me, if I had been drinking something when she uttered those words. Fortunately, I was not, so crisis (or wet carpet) averted. Still, I was both surprised and dismayed over this revelation. How is this possible? I wondered. My daughter will be eleven years old in less than a month…and she has never seen “Ghostbusters” before?! Clearly, I have failed in my parenting duties. Watching the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man wreak havoc on the streets of Manhattan is a rite of passage. It ranks up there with learning how to ride a bike and your first kiss. And there are so many classic lines. “We came. We saw. We kicked its ass” was an anthem of mine in high school. After a particularly grueling math test, my best friend and I exited the classroom uttering those lines, hoping our false bravado would result in high test scores. (It didn’t work, but that’s neither here nor there).  How could my youngest progeny be unfamiliar with one of the classic movies of the 80s?? You know how everybody was afraid to go in the ocean after Jaws? I swear, I tiptoed around my refrigerator for days after watching Ghostbusters, afraid that the demonic beast Zuul might call to me from behind the mayo jar in all his fire-breathing ferocity. I realize Ghostbusters is a comedy, but man alive, that scene freaked me out. I added the movie to my Netflix queue immediately. We’re watching it the next time they’re here, and Audrey had better prepare to be slimed.

Speaking of ghosts, a while back I posted a poll asking the question, do you believe in ghosts? The results surprised me. A whopping 71% said yes. 18% were skeptical but open to the possibility, and 12% answered no. I realize this adds up to 101%, so obviously there’s some margin of error, but I expected – if anything – there would be a lot more nonbelievers out there. Hardly scientific, but interesting.

It turned out to be a pretty busy week for me. I had an opportunity to do some paid copy editing for Portland Book Review, a new experience for me and quite fascinating to be on the other side of the table for a change. I felt flush with power, and understood what a teacher wielding a red felt-tipped marker grading homework must feel like. Or God. OK, more like the teacher. My problem was, I found myself wanting to rewrite every single review, and there were gobs of them. In case you are unfamiliar with a “gob” it is a very difficult equation that looks like this when written out: y = √(x+7) y^2 = x+7 x = y^2 – 7 and the answer is 46. In any case, it was a lot of reviews to edit, and after awhile I just learned to leave them alone and make sure the punctuation and spelling were correct and all the paragraph breaks were in the right spots. While not quite as satisfying as writing, I could see myself being an editor and enjoying my work. My monthly Rose City Unwrapped column was also due, so I wrote that up and turned it in. And that’s when I had an epiphany.

The day before, we’d watched an episode of Kitchen Nightmares, and on relaunch night Gordon Ramsay notified the staff that a food blogger who had trashed the place online was back to give them a second chance. They were tripping all over themselves trying to please this rather mousy-looking woman who was blogging and tweeting right from her table. Seriously, they were treating her like a celebrity, and I thought, hmm. I’d kill for that sort of royal treatment. Teacher/God complex, remember?

I’d been toying around with the idea of spinning off my column into a Portland-centric blog, developing it into an online guide chock full of  reviews. Not ordinary reviews, but more in-your-face, no holds barred critiques. What you would sound like if you were talking about a restaurant experience with a friend. And thus, Rose City Unwrapped: An Insider’s Guide To Portland was born. It won’t supplant this blog; it’s more of a side project and a labor of love for my adopted hometown. There’s a lot of work still to be done, but it’s fun and gives me something to do. I don’t really need another writing project, but I swear this blogging thing is an addiction.

No harm, no fowl, Bud. (Courtesy of 541radio.com).

Then Audrey had an orchestral recital and Rusty wanted to practice driving, now that he’s got his permit. That’s a separate post unto itself, but let’s just say it’s borderline terrifying handing over the car keys to your teenage son. I just changed his diaper yesterday! OK, not literally…but it seems like it.

Tonight I am committing fowl play and making a Beer Butt Chicken on the grill (I’ve linked to the recipe I use). The first time I tried this it felt like I was sodomizing a bird, but the end result was delicious. If you’ve never shoved a beer can up a chicken’s rear cavity before and cooked to tender and crispy perfection, then you are totally missing out. The beer steams the chicken internally, making it moist and juicy, and the jokes you can crack during the whole process are reason alone to try this out.

Hmm. I wonder how a Beer Butt Chicken food cart would go over in Portland…?

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18 thoughts on “Cock-A-Doodle-DON’T!

  1. Ghostbusters is such a classic movie. I watch it all the time when its on and may or may not own it on dvd and put it on on occasion. Its a good “I dont feel good so I’m going to watch this” movie.

    Also, hooray for paid copy editing. :D

    And I love Kitchen Nightmares. :)

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  2. Funny–the post came up in my inbox with a different title.
    Gordon Ramsay IS the Awesome sauce, with a side of mean.

    funny post–I will have to try the chicken!
    blessings
    jane

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  3. OMG, reading this post and watching that clip brought back a TON of wonderful memories for me, Mark!

    Yes, I remember when Ghostbusters came out and exactly where I was and what I was doing in my life. I think Ghostbusters was the most popular movie that year. In fact, they played it during the summer Olympics in Korea!

    And about your Beer Butt Chicken…..

    “The first time I tried this it felt like I was sodomizing a bird, but the end result was delicious. If you’ve never shoved a beer can up a chicken’s rear cavity before and cooked to tender and crispy perfection, then you are totally missing out. ”

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! HILARIOUS!

    Hey, your new food review blog sounds AWESOME!

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  4. My sister and brother in law made beer butt chicken a couple summers ago and one of them caught on fire and blew up. I heard it was still delicious. lol.

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  5. I am very familiar with beer-butted-chicken (sounds kind of horrible when I put it like that). Delicious! Also? I think they make people watch Ghostbusters to pass their citizenship exams these days. Never seeing it is considered unAmerican.

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    1. Oh and I sent my comment too soon, without saying how excited I am for you with all these opportunities. Your new blog sounds awesome! You are really doing great work to get out there. I’m rooting for you!

      Like

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