My Last Supper

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I have to make it known that I will no longer be attending dinners that include nine or more people. I can’t take it anymore. This weekend, I went to a birthday party that included 30 people for dinner. Well, I didn’t eat dinner with all of those people. I ate with about six of them. The rest of them were so far down the table that we weren’t together. I said hello and it ended there. The only thing we had in common at this dinner is that we were at the same table and couldn’t eat for 2.5 hours because there were 30 people to serve. Enough. No more. My anxiety can’t take it. Continue reading

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Charleston Proper

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I’ve lived in Charleston, South Carolina for almost 12 years. Being one of the oldest cities in the US, it has experienced many changes and boom times. But I doubt it’s ever experienced the influx of tourists and attention that it has in the last decade. When I could still stomach watching “Chopped” on the Food Network, one year a whole season of that show seemed to feature a different chef from Charleston on every episode. By the end of that season I think the only people left off Chopped was the street meat purveyors and a Subway sandwich tech from the King Street location.

I think you get the point. Charleston exposure is nearing overkill. If there were a magazine for dogs they’d be ranking the “Top Ten Places in Charleston to take a Crap.” I’m glad that my city is popular and that people are willing to come here and spend their money. I really am. The traffic is decidedly more horrible, but progress comes with a price.

Being a “local” in a popular tourist destination puts you in a precarious position. On the one hand, you want to share your home and what you love about it with people who are interested. On the other, you want to be able to go to your favorite joints without waiting in line behind giant men in tank tops who saw the place on Rachel Ray.

I pretended to be a tourist for a day to see what it was like. I guess you could call this a “Local acting like a tourist’s guide to Charleston.” Continue reading

Unhandy Zilch

I have always been jealous of people who could work a drill. I just don’t have that talent. Both of my grandfathers did. One was a brick engineer and the other one ran a successful construction company. Well, they’d be proud of their grandson today because I just finished installing a light fixture in my bedroom and it only took me two weeks and so many trips to Lowes that I now qualify for part-time benefits. Continue reading

Dry-clean This

hqdefault-2In preparation for one of the 40 weddings I am invited to this year (always the bridesmaid never the bride…er…right?) I entered a dry-cleaner with some garments I hoped still fit. They’ve been shrinking a lot of things, lately, even stuff I never brought in. I realized, as I handed over two shirts that apparently take five days to clean, that this place hasn’t changed in thirty years. Dry-cleaners evolve like granite. I have more computing power in my pocket than they have in their whole store and yet we still pay them $4 a shirt? For what? Continue reading

Don’t Save Your Tin Foil Hat

I think we should be wasting more tin foil. People act like it’s so precious. They take care to pull out just enough. Why so delicate? Meanwhile, we use plastic wrap like it’s nothing.
Currently, there’s 800 square miles of plastic wrap floating off the coast of California, but we keep using it to cover that half of a Coke you’re saving for later. Tin foil isn’t choking our oceans but people ration it like it’s 1935. Continue reading

Fire Fireball Whisky

how-fireball-whiskey-became-the-most-successful-liquor-in-decades.jpgHalloween is a lot like going to the bar for children. You dress up, eat about 8,000 calories worth of candy and then end up on the floor with dilated pupils swearing that you’ll never eat another piece of candy again. Halloween is also like hitting the kid lottery. I filled up a pillowcase one year and seriously considered retiring. But as the days of November creep along, your Halloween candy stash begins to dwindle. You start rationing like a world war has broken out. One piece of chocolate here, a cherry Jolly Rancher there, until you start only biting a half of a Butter Finger a day in a desperate attempt to make the stuff last until Christmas. No one ever makes it. You cave like the selfish sugar addict all children are. And then you hit rock bottom. Nothing left in the till except grape anything and Atomic Fireballs. Next to the apple that one jerk always hands out, the Fireball is the worst Halloween candy. They linger like black mold in your candy basket. You know they are there, but you avoid them until you have no choice. Throw them away? Never. They are still candy. But you eat them begrudgingly, like broccoli, because you have to. Continue reading