Cherry Garcia

Ben and Jerry’s has always been high on my list of socially aware companies making good products from good ingredients to fill the high-munchy needs of the consumer market for something sweet and cold and creamy world-wide.  I’ve always been proud of the light counter-cultural echo I heard in their manufacturing, marketing and distribution.  Besides, I’m from Wisconsin and what’s not to love about dairy products?  Besides goat cheese, I mean….

But I’m writing to reassure Niek that this isn’t some kind of blog campaign touting a favorite brand.

To tell the absolute truth, Ben and Jerry’s reminds me a lot of Rob Reiner.  Rob had a lot of advantages growing up absurd in America.  Reiner’s dad was a truly funny guy and Rob was an earnest student of show business, and found a place putting out mildly funny, upbeat, somewhat socially aware (but always smelling of capital and oppression) bits of fluffy cotton candy yearning to be flambé.  If you get the butterfat right and the sugar content and the temperature for the mix, it’s hard to fuck-up ice cream.

Consider Rob Reiner.  Hard work, the right connections, a commitment to show biz, liberal sensitivity… hard to screw that up too…. sort of the Cherry Garcia of show biz when you think about it, and contemporaneous with the Ben and Jerry Cinderella story.

I don’t dislike Ben and Jerry’s.  How could I?  I have NEVER purchased any of their products.  Between Shattuck in Berkeley (Edy’s) and Grand Avenue in Oakland (Dreyer’s) I never felt a need to shop for an out of town brand during my peak ice cream eating years.  I did watch that Rob Reiner movie, you know the one, earnest liberal kid with delusions of sixties seeks only to help humnity find world peace and has a rollicking time with a fun loving free love artiste not too many years his junior but quite blonde and zaftig.

Yet strange synchronicity is afoot reminding me of that quasi-affinity of mine for B&J’s.  Consider the highly unlikely stroke of fate that put me on a Welsh bog snorkeling page (a contest sponsored by Ben and Jerry’s) at the same time that Niek was winning a pint or so of American blend.

According to the Wikipedia,

In 1987, ice cream manufacturers Ben and Jerry named one of their flavors Cherry Garcia after this musician. Since then, it has become the most popular of the Ben and Jerry’s flavors. For a month after Garcia’s death, the ice cream was made with black cherries as a way of mourning.

This little detail, the black cherries, makes me respect those boys from Vermont and their product, even if I have never bought it.   A marketing model that sells anything more elaborate than tie-dyed t-shirts and sand cast candles to the deadhead crowd is hopelessly elaborate.  I myself stand testimony to that fact.

Also, I like Häagen-Dazs, but like I said… it’s hard to make bad ice cream.

Alito Nomination… Scalia Lite?

Antonin Scalia… I always think Thomas and Scalia, and then I spit.   I don’t much think of Antonin Scalia by himself because  to me he’s a caricature, an example of what the Supremes ought not to be, a book-end, half of the comedy twosome of Thomas and Scalia. 

Now it looks like we may be in for a long run of the Three Stooges, unless the Democrats find enough political Viagra in their luggage to stonewall this thing. 

Samuel Alito, the treasonous felon’s choice.   With ANY Bush pick, the prospects for free elections in 2024 are hugely diminished.  Fitzgerald needs to come forward with the rest of the indictments soon so this thing can’t get off the ground.

Blog Value

Stowe Boyd grumbles about blog value at Get Real.  I’m with him.  The calc for Sandhill yields two results depending on whether I use or the

Naturally, it was my inclination to add those values together.  I occasionally have to ping from when I think I’ve written something just jeepers-swell.  That’s another aspect of whatever it is that typepad is doing to make me schizo-bloggic.

Let me put that another way.  If somebody links to me in a blogroll that shows last update stx and they use the address, then my updates will not show up in their blogroll unless I run a manual ping when I post.

Real techies probably have this all figured out and just add a line to their code somewhere.  Not me… I’m a do-it-the-hard-way kind of guy.

[Disclosure:  the combined value of the sandhill addresses is worth about half of Get Real.]

Leave me in, Coach…

We had guests yesterday and as part of the pre-game prep I was the designated peeler.  I peeled apples for an apple crisp and I peeled potatoes for potato-leek soup.  Midway through the first half of the peelage, I took a short stroke to the fingertip, laying bare what felt like about six inches of raw nerve at the end of my left index finger.  The right index finger was still good but I did NOT use it to dial 911. Closer inspection of the wound revealed about a quarter inch incision and a dangling flap of partially peeled skin behind that.  Manfully, I bandaged the wound and kept on peeling without even wasting a time-out.  Well, Beth bandaged the wound, but I did not whimper.  Much.

After dinner, when the guests had gone, I removed the bandage and inspected my injury.  The little flap of skin was still attached and every time I wiggled it I faced new waves of agony.  Never mind that, I told myself.  There are dishes to do, and do them I did.

All night long, whenever I moved my left hand that little flap of skin would catch on a blanket or something and fresh waves of crippling pain would wash over me.  This morning the flap was quite dried out and with a little wiggling back and forth I was able to remove it.

This must be what pro-football players feel like the day after a crushing game.   A little pain, a little anguish, but compensating for all that the prideful memory of a job well done.

Why Scooter Makes Me Yawn…

After 27 months one is tempted simply to say "BFD."  The Libby indictment is a little late to stop the war.  There are still enough witches around the White House cauldron to keep things stirred up, even with old Scoot-fruit gone.  Twenty or thirty indictments for crimes against humanity, war crimes, high treason involved in the violation of international treaties to which the US is signatory…  impeachment for election fraud and a round of Bronx cheers would begin to address some of the superficial issues that the Bush gang of felons and miscreants have visited upon the country.  One dude named "Scooter" seems too small an offering to the gods of felonious misprision.

Forbes Story

Steve Rubel blogged yesterday…

Earlier tonight I was on a four-minute segment on CNBC that largely focused on Forbes’ new cover story – Attack of the Blogs. Registration is required or the bugmenot login/password "forbesdontbug" worked for me. The article’s author, Daniel Lyons, was in our interview group.

The gist of Lyons’ soon-to-be maligned story is that blogs are “the prized platform of an online lynch mob spouting liberty but spewing lies, libel and invective.”

I read the story and – although it is one-sided – I don’t think we-the-bloggers should be too quick to dismiss it.  Issues related to libel and slander, threats and abuse are all too real.  The issue has another side, of course.  Some of my favorite bloggers write anonymously out of fear of economic retaliation.  There are dozens of overlapping communities of bloggers who write responsibly, truthfully, and bring the force of their conviction to bear against corporate and political greed and power mongers.  To the extent that the Forbes article represents an attack on freedom of expression, it indeed will soon be much maligned.  But to the extent that it describes unethical and simply abusive behaviors we should value it.  When the man said that the pen is mightier than the sword, he wasn’t yakking about using your ballpoint to poke someone in the eye… nor, is it seemly to beat someone about the head and shoulders with your keyboard. 

Tutu Tangorella

Harry’s okay…