Monthly Archives: October 2012

Good lord, its Mrs. Kravitz

You gotta respect old school, batshit, don’t know no better, crazy.

It has a certain power all its own.

And coffee isn’t even involved.

Because its a known fact that nothing scares crazy out of hiding than cheap Chinese food.

Panda Express, the USA’s contribution to the fall of Asian culture as we know it.

So when China pony’s up the complaints about Western culture destroying tradition, we can point to Panda Express.

Your welcome.

So I am in line at Panda Express, going multicultural.

And then I see her.

Beige elastic waisted pants pulled up high, like to the base of her bra high.

The shirt might have once been a tablecloth at an Italian restaurant, because red and white never go out of style.

The hair is black, like black that came out of a bottle black, and not hair dye, but like India ink type black.

Skin like the decades old, sunbaked dash of an old Chrysler.

Sensible shoes. I haven’t seen Earth Shoes in about 30 years, but I am sure they are comfortable.

At first I thought she was drawing on the glass separating her from the food with her nose, like you used to do on a foggy window as a kid?

And then I realize that she is just looking intently at the food.

All of it.

I am not even sure she is in line at this point, she is just darting back and forth.

And, I am not sure why this makes it better, she is a mumbler.

Here is the top three things she said during the whole time I was in line:

  • “The pan’s empty, how the hell am I supposed to order it if its empty? Is the fat Mexican guy making more? When?” (This is not said to the counter help, just to herself.)
  • Moo Shoo Pork? Why would anyone eat that? I like pork, but you don’t even know whats in Moo Shoo.
  • $9.20? Why $.20? Thats how they get you. I don’t carry dimes.”

At the end of most sentences there is a flutter of her fingers, almost like she is shooing away a bug.

Perhaps she see the bugs and we don’t, that doesn’t mean they’re not there.

I just realized that she doesn’t have a name yet. I will call her Mrs. Kravitz, from the really old show “Bewitched”. (She was loud and really annoyingly busy.)

But I think the highlight of my whole encounter with Mrs. Kravitz, was when she noticed the Chicken Egg Roll tray was empty.

One of the kitchen guys was walking by behind the counter with a dirty pan and a filthy apron.

“ExCUSE me!” (Only one syllable of one word was louder and screechy than the rest.)

“Que?” In Los Angeles, this is the secret code word that means the conversation should switch to Spanish if you want participation.

“Are there more egg rolls? In the back? Are they making more? Is there a wait? How much are they? What if I get 3 of them?”

All of these questions were delivered rapid fire, with no chance for the guy to answer. Not that he was going to, because, unless I am totally wrong, his facial expression and lack of any sort of affirmative facial expression

means that he understood none of it.

Thats ok, I don’t think she is that interested in answers, just questions.

But I did help her count her change, because she thought the cashier had short changed her.

She counted it five times, each time muttering a different amount.

And then she turned to me and handed me her money.

“Count this. I think she’s stealing from me.”

I counted it, and then I counted it out loud, showing her the count.


Finally, she believed me, and took her money back.

And then, eyeing me like the sneaky dude I am, she counted it to make sure I didn’t take any.

And then she grabbed her stuff, glared at no one in particular, and stomped her comfortable shoes out the door.



Posted by on October 31, 2012 in Uncategorized


I didn’t invite you to get all up in my business.

Nosy Rosy is all up in your business.

The line in Starbucks is long and slow.

A new cashier can effect you like constipation.

Annoying as hell and takes forever.

And, adding to that general sense of annoyance, is Rosy.

Nosy Rosy.

Nosy, because I have so far seen her but into 2 cashier/customer conversations in order to offer suggestions about how to make the drink better, or offer advice on how to write it up.

But an interesting dynamic has come over the line. Its a lot like that scene from the Helen Keller movie, where the little blind and deaf girl roams from plate to plate during a meal, and nobody says a word.

Same thing here.

No one is really talking to her, but for the most part they are just tolerating her.

I have dated women like that.

It becomes a teeth grating ass-clench of a pet peeve for me.

Like now.

I am kind of lost in my revery when a voice cuts into my thoughts.

“What are you having?”


The line has looped around and Nosy Rosy has pulled even with me in passing.

I was hoping to avoid this.

I almost bite my lip in anticipation.

I know that no matter what I say, she will pony up something else under the pretense that I will like it better.

I just want my coffee.

I also toy with the idea of giving her some gibberish like I sometimes do with the crazies I run into.

But that could backfire.

Best to just be confusing.

“Who are you?”

“Huh?” She hesitates for half a second before jumping back in. “You look like a straight coffee guy.”

Ok, she’s accurate, but still annoying.

Unrelated facts are almost as good as crazy in this case.

“All the coffee here is free trade, thats important!” I pick up a 1 pound bag of coffee beans and hand it to her.

People have this automatic reflex when you hand them things.

They take it.

I am beginning to see the gears turning in her head.


The moment her mind makes the conscious connection with the idea that I am wasting her time, you can see it in her eyes.

And then, its just like a cop at the scene of the crime, shooing away the tourists.

Move along, nothing to see here.

And just like that, she’s gone.

Gonna be a good day.

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Posted by on October 30, 2012 in Uncategorized


Take your crack pipe and go back to New York.

Halloween is always on a cold, drafty night at the end of October.

Except if its Halloween in Southern California.

It was low 80’s today, blue skys, and the beach looks awesome.

I saw on the news that the East Coast is bracing for a terrible storm.

Sucks to be you, just saying.

You can argue how awesome NY is compared to Southern California all you like, but that sort of thing never happens here.

New York’s biggest issue is envy.

Heres what I mean.

If you talk to 10 separate New Yorkers and tell them you are from California, half of them will launched into a wholly unasked for list of why they feel New York is better.

Try the same thing with Californians.

Tell 10 people from Los Angeles you are from New York and all of them will say more or less the same thing.


Back to the beach.

There is some sort of event going on in Hermosa Beach today involving an organized walk from the Manhattan pier to the Hermosa pier and back.

Not sure what its about, does it really matter?

It is Breast Cancer Awareness month, maybe its for that.

I didn’t sign up, but I am wishing I did.

The shirt rocks.

Its all about the shirt for me.

And when I saw that everyone participating got a little medal, I about shit myself.

I love medals.

At least the kind you get for silly stuff like 5K’s.

The other kind usually involve dying while doing something heroic, thanks but no.

I have the utmost respect, but I figured out a long time ago, that is not my place in all of this.

Nobody was ever awarded a medal for a 5K posthumously. (After you’re dead.)

Despite the fact that running a 5K in beach sand can make you want to die. (I hate running.)

There are two types of people that do these events.

Well, three, but let me get to the first two.

The first is the serious competitor.

This guy is a runner, but a 2nd tier runner.

What that means is he’s not ready to do a marathon, but he is serious about his shit.

The Nike’s are new and expensive.

The heart monitor on his wrist is taking pulse, BP, and God knows what else and uploading it to a website real time.

He not just hardcore, he’s expensive hardcore.

And here is why he will never run a marathon.

Because there is some penniless exchange student from Kenya that will kick his ass and spit him out in a marathon and he knows it, expensive shit or not.

So he will always be the slightly big fish with all the expensive shit in the small pond.

But he does get the medal.

Damn him.

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Posted by on October 29, 2012 in Uncategorized


Bittermac and the blustery day.

Kind of like an edgier Winnie the Pooh.

And who doesn’t love Pooh?

Pooh was the shit when I was little.

Sunday night, dinner, bath, footie jammies, and then lay in front of the tv and watch Pooh get his big ass stuck in a hole.


Few things in life are that basic and innocent.

And that whole phrase “Innocence lost” is kind of a tough one to get, right up until someone asks you, “When was the last time you watched Winnie the Pooh and the blustery day”?

And then it makes sense.

Having kids is a great excuse to watch.

But what do you do when your kids grow up?

Now you have no excuse.

And Winnie is the epitome of the simple mind having a simple life.

No brains, no headaches.

In fact, he is so uncomplicated that he was used as the example of Taoism. (In a really simplistic nutshell, living an uncomplicated life.)

I read the book 25 years ago, but the tagline of the book is incredible and has stayed with me throughout the years.

“While Eeyore frets …
… and Piglet hesitates
… and Rabbit calculates
… and Owl pontificates
…Pooh just is.”

I try not to get too weepy touchie feelie here, this is just a crude little blog after all, but this is one of those phrases that you can read a few times and come up with something more each time.

I honestly miss those nights in front of the tv in my jammies.

Walt Disney was the MAN back in the day.

What started as a grainy black and white cartoon of Steamboat Willie, has become the worldwide giant of DISNEY.

The Mouse is powerful.

Do NOT anger the Mouse.

No more on that subject, A) Not looking to offend the Mouse. and B) Some of the Mouse’s minions are blog fans.

All good here.

I am glad Disneyland moved away from the ticket books.

Pay your entry fee and your done, its all inclusive after that.

Where as, with the tickets, you never had enough E tickets, and you always threw away a lot of A tickets because they never got used.

They should make it like a cruise, include the food as well.

Speaking of cruises, Disney does a cruise now too.

And if my kids were young enough, I would book it today, and I don’t even know what they do on these cruises.

The brand name is that strong.

And who doesn’t love that?

Knott’s Berry Farm, thats who.



Posted by on October 26, 2012 in Uncategorized


No, you can’t sing.

Karaoke is considered cruel and unusual punishment in some countries.

Amnesty International may have a file on this.

But it truly is a cruel thing to watch someone humiliate themselves publicly all for the sake of the base entertainment of the crowd.

Ancient Rome made gladiators fight to the death for the same reason.

What makes people do this?

Jaeger bombs.

It is not just a “Lucky accident” that the drink specials crank up several notches on karaoke night.

Drunk equals karaoke magic.

There is no other way to get a thoroughly untalented housefrau from the burbs to belt out a teeth grinding version of Patsy Kline without enough alcohol to knock out a corps of marines on leave.

But it happens nightly, if you follow the circuit.

Karaoke is an odd phenomenon brought to us by the Japanese.

But keep in mind, these are the same people who brought us 2 girls 1 cup.

I include that just to put it all in the right perspective.

Top 5 Karaoke songs of the night:

  • Baby got back, by Sir Mix a lot. (5 times? Are you shitting me?)
  • My way, by Frank Sinatra. (The man is dead, let it go for God’s sake.)
  • Bohemian Rhapsody, by Queen. (Also dead, but still an incredible song.)
  • Dancing Queen, by Abba. (Seriously, they are not dead. And that is a damn shame.)
  • Satisfaction, by the Rolling Stones. (Mick Jagger can barely pull this shit off. The fact that he has been making it happen for almost 50 years is damned near unbelievable.)

I have no singing ability, this is a known thing.

And yet, here I am.

I am not sure who Lady Antebellum is, but I am somehow involved in singing a duet.

This is so wrong.

Damn you Jaeger bombs.

For those outside the know, a Jaeger bomb is a shot of cough syrup with a higher alcohol content, dropped into a glass of beer.

The beer cuts the harshness off of the Jaegermeister, and kind of makes you drink it a lot faster.

That means two drinks consumed faster than one drink.

Recipe of disaster.

Disaster equals karaoke.

How bad is Jaegermeister? There is a funny commercial that shows a guy sitting on a bloody bed spread with pieces of a body behind him and a garter belt hanging out of his mouth.

“Did I eat a stripper?” He asks as a Jeigermeister logo fades into view above.


That is a fairly accurate commercial, sick as it is.

But people seem so happy when they do it.

So do meth heads, by the way.

So maybe karaoke is a way to indulge a really stupid part of your brain, without the risk of jail time or losing your teeth.


Posted by on October 25, 2012 in Uncategorized


It sucked then, it sucks now.

Adam West was and is a creepy dude.

There was never a more compelling reason to accuse Batman of being gay than Adam West.

I mean, the whole premise is a little suspect to start.

Rich batchelor, lives alone, has a young man living with him, not a relative, and they run around in tights, dealing with all sorts of capers.

There was a Digital Short on Saturday Night Live called the Ambiguously Gay Heroes based on this whole premise.

It was funny as hell and more than a touch creepy.

But the Batman show in 60’s was what was known as “Campy” and “Tongue in cheek”.

And then you add Adam West.

If you were ever to watch a kiddie porn film, Adam West’s voice is the announcer for that film, and that includes creepy way you feel listening to him speak.

All of this came about because of that new TV channel I have mentioned before.

They show non-stop old shows.

And thats awesome when it all my favorite shows.

MASH? I can watch forever. Andy Griffith? Done deal. Dick Van Dyke? You had me at hello.

Batman? Hmmmmmmm. Really?

Its the type of show that defies any sort of logic or common sense.

And Burt Ward didn’t help.

He played Robin in the old series.

He was so peppy and exuberant and just plain ol dumb as a stick, you almost felt sorry for him.

But only to a point.

You got the feeling that he could have shown up at the rehearsal for that weeks show and found out that Batman was going to strip Robin naked, tie him up with duck tape, and then be tortured with a cattle prod for a half hour.

And I would bet you he would be okie dokie fine with it.

Ok, things have gotten a little creepy here.

I have a point to todays blog, so lets get to it.

The Batman show got hideous ratings for its entire fun in the 60’s, not even one good year.

So why show it now?

Mash on the other hand, in addition to being my favorite show of all time, was number one in its time slot for most of its run.

That is what we call TV gold.

So why is Batman on more often than MASH?

Like anything that makes no sense, I assume there is a conspiracy going on.

I have a theory.

Adam West has naked photos of the program scheduler for cable TV, that is really the only explanation I can think of.

Although Burgess Meredith as the Penguin was a stunning casting move.

One of the only bits I liked from my failed stand up career was an imitation of the Penguin working at a gay phone sex line.

Which explains a lot of why I don’t do that anymore.

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Posted by on October 24, 2012 in Uncategorized


By the way, your cat hates you.

Cat people are basically delusional.

They are convinced that their cat loves them.

That is just so cute, and really naive.

And keep in mind I am just telling you this because I care.

Here is the brutal truth.

Your cat hates you.

You might think that your cat naps a lot.

Not so.

Your cat spends all of its spare time thinking about how to kill you.

And be warned if you have children.

Because they especially hate children.

Furry minions of evil.

Some of you are saying, “No, not my cat”, yes, your cat too.

Plus, I am allergic.

There is nothing more annoying than to visit a friend and have a nice weezy visit because their himalayan is shedding its winter coat.

“He never climbs on a stranger’s chest like that, he must like you.”

Bullshit, a cat can spot an asthmatic from a 100 feet away.

Pop quiz.

What’s better than the best cat in the world?

Any dog.

Dog’s are loyal, friendly and affectionate.

All throughout history, dogs are depicted as protectors.

It is a documented fact that if there is a fire, your dog, will not only wake you, but drag your unconscious body out of the house if need be.

Cats will silence the alarms and quietly sneak out the back.

Its true.

So is it any wonder I am a dog person.

And yet, for a short, Twilight zone period of time back when I was married, I had a house full of rescued cats.

How can you do that? You might ask.

No clue.

I came home from work and they were there.

So, I did what any man might do in a tense household when cats are suddenly sprung on him.

Shut the hell up and ate my dinner.

Which is the wise thing to do.

Because women fall under the spell of these furry succubi in the blink of an eye.

Women will tell you that cats have all sorts of traits that they really don’t.

They are elegant, playful, affectionate, caring…blah, blah, blah.

Don’t fall for it.

They only reason they think that is because, late at night, when you are asleep, they crawl up on your pillow and whisper in your ear.

They lie to you, they say things only a child would understand.

They are especially bad for senior citizens.

Mainly because they sleep more.

That is why rich old people leave their fortunes to their cat, because they are brainwashed.

There is also an old legend that they will rob you of your soul while you sleep, but I am willing to admit that one is a bit far fetched.

I think I have made my case well enough, but lets recap.

Dogs? Selfless guardians of your children and your home. Man’s best friend.

Cats? Soulless minions of evil. Not to be trusted around grandma or your kids.

You’ve been warned.

Bad kitty.


Posted by on October 23, 2012 in Uncategorized


Here I come to save the day!

I believe that children are our future, teach them well and let them lead the way.

Whitney Houston sang that and made it a household phrase.

The sentiment is a solid one, but Houston did overdose, so her common sense was a little suspect.

Or at least her sense of self preservation.

But kids are kind of an important thing, in the long run.

Kind of the whole reason we are here.

And why am I mentioning this?

Because Roy is an asshole.

I am on a mini vacation, kind of.

I got the hell out of town and fled to the apple orchards, more of less my fresh fruit happy place.

A picnic in the middle of an apple orchard isn’t heaven, but its in the same zip code.

And this is where I first saw Roy.

20-something, good looking, baby papoose strapped to his chest with a blanket over it.

We will assume for now that there is a baby under the blanket, otherwise it seems kind of creepy.

Surrounding Roy, is his rather frantic wife and 4 screaming kids.

Anyway Roy and the clan are in the wrong area.

If you want to go into the orchards, you have to pay and get a hand stamp.

Roy and the rest of the unwashed had no hand stamps.

Rules are rules, don’t like it, start the Occupy Orchard movement.

Roaming the orchard, seemingly at random, are the orchard rangers, here to serve and protect.

“Sir, I’m sorry, but you all can’t be here without a hand stamp. You will have to leave.”

Professional, straight forward, slightly bitchy in that official manner.

The classic part of this whole thing is Roy’s reply.

He is holding the baby papoose with his arms underneath, bouncing the papoose in a soothing manner.

And here is his reply.

“Fuck off, we’re just looking.”


What an awesome learning moment for Roy’s kids, two of whom are standing right next to him.

They must be proud.

The ranger asks again for Roy and his gang to leave and Roy begin’s a little dancing, mimicking her voice like a little kid bullying a smaller kid.

And then another Ranger comes up and asks them to leave.

Roy seems to slid into his rude little niche of being a total ass to complete strangers.

It isn’t until the ranger supervisor comes up that Roy straightens out and flies right.

And denies everything that has happened for the last 5 minutes.

In the end, the supervisor allowed them to come into the picnic area and eat.

Based on what I know about management, the rangers and the supervisor, who all went into the ranger shack, are writing up their reports.

There is a good chance that the rangers will get reprimanded, because Roy is a denying shit and the supervisor didn’t witness.

I am a good samaritan on occasion.

Today is one of those days.

I head into the shack.

The supervisor is friendly, but when I mention Roy, she gets serious and closes the door to the back room.

She thanks me for vouching for the rangers, but there will likely be a reprimand for them.

However, the video quality and audio pick up for the Iphone 4S is fairly awesome.

And the freeze frame on Roy sticking his middle finger into the ranger’s face was clear as a bell when I froze the frame.

No reprimands today, pal.

I am a fricking super hero.


Posted by on October 22, 2012 in Uncategorized


Because some of my best friends have been dogs.

I try not to get up on my soap box that often.

Mainly because I am short and a fall from a height like that could break my ankles.

But this is a decent rant that deserves some air time.

Why is the government killing dog’s?

I normally don’t get involved because I have come to realize that as a carnivore, I have accepted killing animals at a base intellectual level.

But the state of Cali has decided that, due to all available funding going to out of control entitlement programs, they have to cut money somewhere, and now the dog pound is having their funding reduced and have to euthanize strays earlier.


We live in a state with one of the most bloated state governments in the entire nation.

But the first they cut HAS to be schools, cops, firemen, and keeping the dogs alive.

Meanwhile the state legislature just voted themselves raises.

I shit you not.

We are in the middle of some of the toughest economic times of the last several decades, and our state representative decided they did not make enough money.

There are times where I feel kind of like a bad person, capable of terrible behavior.

But even at my worst, I don’t think I could be a politician.

There is something that happens to someone when they become a politician.

Like some sort of mental shift over into the dark side.

And things you would never condone in your personal life become the focus of a “Fact finding committee.”

Now, I realize that any politician with any skill at all can give you a letter perfect reason why this is either good or bad, depending on if they are running for reelection this year.

I have a few friends that are in the somewhat thankless business of saving the dogs.

I don’t know that I could deal with the heartache that has be there.

Because it never ends.

That is a nightmare that would even make Stephen King shudder.

More power to them, they are fighting the good fight.

But that has to eat away at you, doesn’t it?

I mean, eventually, do they become like burnt out Viet Nam vets with that 1000 yard stare?

But, it being a cause that not even I can turn my back on, I am getting into it.

I am working to secure a pooch for my folks.

Cause who doesn’t love a dog?

Probably the politicians.

If this were a really bad animated movie, we would find out later that the politicians are really cats and this is all some sort of clever conspiracy.

But, that is animated films and this is real life.

For the longest time, I would delete the save the dog posts on Facebook.

Didn’t have the time and didn’t want to feel bad.

Out of sight out of mind.


Maybe I need to make time.

Maybe we all do.

You may now return to your business.


Posted by on October 19, 2012 in Uncategorized


Let’s assume you’re right….

Clarity comes to me at the oddest of times.

And when that happens, you can do one of two things.

You can either let it wash off of you like water off a ducks back.

Or, you can look at it and try to absorb it, taking what you can learn from it.

So here it is.

I am not a nice person.

That sounds so much worse than it is.

You have to apply my perspective to it.

I had a conversation the other day with someone whose opinion I value.

And I value different people for different things, but valuing an opinion is a rarity for me.

Its a based on experience kind of thing.

I almost never value someones opinion unless I have some sort of insight into what they have done in life.

So, when one of these people gives me something, I listen.

Except politics, but that is a different story. (One of the most valued opinions I know is just a mess politically. Otherwise, he saves lives daily. Props to you, you know who you are.)

Anyway, the problem starts with me being a rotten bully at times.

To the point that, pretty much only strangers will toe to toe it with me, mainly because I get nasty, or at least they think I will, which is kind of the same thing.

And when that happens, you tend to get further and further down that rude and surly road.

So, other than strangers whose opinions hold no value for me, I occasionally get something from someone special.

It seems I am mean.

The opinion was, a recent blog had an underlying tone of mean and sad.

My first reaction is defensive, can’t get around those defensive instincts.

And then, like with most things, I begin to analyze the shit out of it.

And this is what I have found.

She’s right.

The tone of this blog, by intent, by accident and by chance, has always been snarky and sarcastic.

In the beginning, it was reporting on the nasty, awkward behavior of others.

But then, the whole Bittermac persona kind of took on a life of its own.

Someone I was dating during the first year of the blog regularly made the comment that I needed to apply a filter to myself.

Its like, even when I was done writing tomorrows blog, I am still Bittermac, preying on those around me like a writing weasel in the henhouse.

But what do I do about that?

That is the other thing I have been chewing on.

I don’t want to stop writing this blog, for reasons that I will not share, but are not what you would guess they are.

So I won’t.

I think the idea of a filter is not such a bad idea.

But not with the idea of muzzling myself.

More like filtering to remove the shit from the mix.

And since it took more than a year to get to this place with the blog, its going to take time to get somewhere else.

But the journey is sure to be interesting.

Thanks for listening.


Posted by on October 18, 2012 in Uncategorized