My Mishmash Saturday

Posted by Brandon |

I know everybody loves these weekend recap type posts, soooooo heeeeerrrre we go...

Saturday, in particular was quite the mishmash of activities. It started with Addie and I going to the University of Washington vs. the University of Pacific men's basketball game. UW won handily, 72-54, but more importantly, Addie had a great time. On Friday, we went to the women's basketball game and I discovered that she would put up with it enough to take her again on Saturday to the men's game. She watched a little bit of the basketball, watched all the videos on the scoreboard, liked the cheerleader's pom-poms and just about freaked out a couple times when she saw the mascot Harry - she actually got to meet Harry after the game and didn't like him as much up close. She did poop out by the end, in fact, at the end of both games she got super tired and restless and hard to handle and when we got in the car, she crashed hard. But I learned that it's possible for me to take her to basketball games, just difficult, because I can't do anything like go to the bathroom, have something to eat or concentrate on the game when I'm with her by myself.

After basketball and a quick stop at Taco Bell (I know, but I was so hungry and it's the only drive-thru on the drive home), we came home and met up with Death? and her friend in downtown Edmonds for the Edmonds Christmas tree lighting just after they saw a matinee of Twilight, so of course they couldn't shut up about it (kidding Death?). We saw Santa momentarily, heard some middle school jazz choir sing some carols and saw them light the skinny ass and less than impressive tree. In future years Addie will be all about the downtown tree lighting so now we know what to expect.

Then it was off to Seattle for one of the best Seattle Thanksgiving traditions, Taj Mahal at Jazz Alley. For that last ten years or so, The Taj Mahal Trio plays two sets a night all week leading up to Thanksgiving and the weekend following. This is the third time we've seen him over Thanksgiving, though we'd have probably gone every year if we wouldn't have moved to California. He's one of the greatest bluesmen alive and always puts on an amazing show and if you don't know him, here's one of his best songs...

Following an amazing, beautiful, romantic, fun show by Taj Mahal, what could we do to finish the night off and make it any more perfect? How about watching Pink Flamingos! I'd never seen Pink Flamingos, I'd only heard about it, but nothing that I heard could possibly prepare me for just how obscene Pink Flamingos is. Holy shit! John Waters is sick...awesomely sick. I don't even know what else to say about it other than....Whoa! That is one fucked up movie.

So basketball, tacos, Christmas, blues music and asshole contortions. Now that's my kind of Saturday.


Blog Culture Box Wednesday: Thanksgiving

Posted by Brandon |

If it's hard to read, click on the image to bigify

Thanks to Howard, Sizzle, Dave2 and Michelle for participating!

What about you? Please leave your answers in the comments...
  1. What's a little known fact about Pilgrims?
  2. White or dark meat?
  3. Finish this senence: Gravy goes good on....
  4. What's one thing you are thankful for this year?
And if you'd like to participate, please let me know.

Hope you have a very happy Thanksgiving!


Work, Or The Lack Thereof

Posted by Brandon |

We've been thinking recently that maybe it would be good to get Addie into a daycare so that she can be around other little kids. Being home all day with daddy is great, but she needs some socialization. An hour here and there of baby story time just doesn't cut it. There is a particularly good one close to Death?'s work that her co-workers use and love and we'd probably both feel comfortable sending her there.

Of course, that means that daddy would need to reenter the job market to help pay for the daycare and because, simply, that I would have nothing productive to do all day if I'm not watching her. While I'd like that for about a week, I'd be pretty bored after too much longer.

Problem is, I have no idea what I want to do. I've been scouring the Craigslist listings and whatnot and nothing at all has jumped out at me. We're not in any kind of rush to get me working, so I have the luxury of taking my time and finding something that is a good fit, but what's a good fit?

My last few jobs have been in the e-Commerce field - customer service, shipping, warehouse, etc. - and while I've enjoyed those jobs, it's not what I ever really wanted to do. My "career" just kind of evolved from a job that I took when I moved to Seattle. So while I'm most qualified to work in that field, I don't really know if I want to.

What I'd most like to do is work in sports or write, but each of those has problems of their own. Sports, generally, is a massive time committment for very little pay. That was the problem when I decided against a job that would've given me an office in Husky Stadium at the University of Washington. I'm not a fresh out of college kid anymore. I can't take a job that pays nothing and live at the ballpark all season long anymore. I'm not willing to give up that kind of time with Addie.

And don't even get me started with writing. First of all, I'm not that good of a writer, so finding a writing job would be hard anyway. But with newspapers failing and the few paying blogging jobs paying peanuts, there really isn't much of a market for writers right now.

Then there's the problem of having a boss. Though my last boss was great, and really all of my bosses have been great, I don't know if I can take directions from anybody anymore. Being my own boss since April has kind of spoiled me. Not taking directions from the higher ups has been amazing. Not dealing with office politics and people's bullcrap all day....so great. (Though, my current boss - Addie - has been the toughest boss of all time, and I have to deal with her crap constantly.)

And honestly, I don't know if I can deal with the prospect of worrying about my job all the time. I have been laid off far too many times and I just don't know if I want to set myself up for yet another layoff. I'm seriously starting to get gunshy about this. With the economy like it is, I've heard of a lot of people losing their jobs lately just in the blogosphere or at least companies that people I read work for. It's not fun getting yourself entrenched in a job and then having it pulled out from under you without much warning. Trust me, I know.

So what the heck am I going to do? Perhaps I should go back to school, become a student. That's kind of like having a job. But what the heck would I study? That's a whole 'nother post in itself. I have no idea.

Luckily, like I said, I have the luxury of taking my time. Addie will be fine without going to daycare and I love being a stay-at-home daddy so it's not like I have to make a decision or settle on something I'm not excited about, but it would be nice to know what I should be looking for even. It would make it all a lot easier and a lot less confusing.


We're Ready For The Apple Cup

Posted by Brandon |

Today is the annual game between the University of Washington Huskies and the Washington State Cougars - better known as The Apple Cup. Unfortunately, this season, it's being referred to as The Rotten Apple Cup or, so I just read, The Crapple Cup, since this is a football game between two of the most pathetic football teams in the country. Rivals.com has done a great job putting it into perspective...

"• The teams are a combined 1-20 overall and 0-15 in the Pac-10. The only win was Washington State's 48-9 victory over Portland State on Sept. 20. Portland State is 3-7 as a member of the Football Championship Subdivision (i.e., Division I-AA).

• Of the 120 Football Bowl Subdivision (i.e., Division I-A) teams, Washington ranks 118th in total offense, 118th in scoring offense, 111th in total defense and 117th in scoring defense. Washington State ranks 119th in total offense, 119th in scoring offense, 113th in total defense and 119th in scoring defense. Washington is 117th in turnover margin, Washington State is last.

• Washington has been outscored by an average of 26 points per game. Its shining moment was a near-upset of then-No. 15 BYU. Washington lost 28-27 when quarterback Jake Locker was flagged for a questionable 15-yard unsportsmanlike-conduct penalty on a late touchdown run. BYU blocked the ensuing 35-yard extra-point attempt.

• Washington State has lost every Pac-10 game by at least 25 points. That includes three shutouts and two more games where the Cougars' only score was a field goal. The defense has been just as bad. Washington State has allowed at least 60 points in four Pac-10 games this year and went through a four-game stretch where it allowed at least 58 points in each game.

• Washington State has allowed a Pac-10 record 533 points this season. With two games left, it's likely the Cougars will break the dubious FBS record of 566 points allowed, held by Eastern Michigan's 2002 team.

• Washington is facing its first winless season since 1890. The Huskies played one game that year – a scoreless tie at Washington College.

• Never before has there been a Pac-10 game between teams with at least 10 losses."

Wow. Even I didn't realize it was that bad. But I'll still be watching. In fact, this might be one of the most competitive, interesting, fun games to watch in Apple Cup history. Nobody wants to lose this stinker and cement themselves as the worst team in the history of the game. It might be an all our war.

Or it might be the greatest stinker of all time. A 2-0 final score wouldn't really be much of a surprise.

Anyway....Go Dawgs!


Thrift Store Fail

Posted by Brandon |

The pride and joy of the Value Village chain - Edmonds, Washington.


Blog Culture Box Wednesday: Vampires

Posted by Brandon |

Better late than never, right? But Vampires are so in right now, I had to get this one done.

Thanks to Justin, Tori, B.E. Earl and Poppy for participating.

What about you? Feel free to answer in the comments...

  1. Favorite Vampire...The Count from Sesame Street, Count Dracula or Count Chocula?
  2. Which do you prefer - to bite or to be bitten?
  3. What's the best way to kill a Vampire?
  4. Finish the sentence, "I vant to suck your...."

As always, if you'd like to participate, let me know.


From The DWP! Archives: I'm Magic

Posted by Brandon |

Did you know that I'm magic? Check it out...

Friday morning I brought a Diet Cherry Coke with me to work. I drank a little bit more than half of it before setting it on my workstation and forgetting about it. We had a leak in the roof above our area and had to move a bunch of boxes around so that our building manager could figure out the problem.

While moving these boxes I must have bumped my workstation ever so slightly and knocked my soda over. I went to the restroom and did some other work and about half an hour later I returned to my workstation and was stopped dead in my tracks by what I found...

Completely freaked out I ran into the other room and yelled at my coworkers to come see what I found. Everybody accused me of setting it up and didn't believe that it could just happen randomly.

Of course this phenomenon is easily explained. But before you start spouting off some kind of scientific crap about center of gravity and whatnot, let me set you straight. It obviously was Magic. I must be magic. There really is no other explanation. These powers that I possess are strong. So you'd best not cross me or else you might find yourself a victim of my magic just like this can of Diet Cherry Coke.


Ask The Pantless Pontificate

Posted by Brandon |

I'm really just a wannabe advice columnist. I don't know why I haven't pursued my true calling a long time ago. Kind of stupid, don't you think. I could be giving Dear Abby a run for her money by now.

I did, a few years ago, attempt to become an advice columnist with my occasional feature "Ask The Pantsless Pontificate". I don't know why I ever stopped.

So here's your chance to get some top notch advice, free of charge. All you have to do is submit your question below and I will be answering questions later in the week. You can remain anonymous, if you like, or you can give me your name or whatever. If you wish to remain anonymous, use my email address (downwithpants@gmail.com) in the email portion of the form...

E-mail Address: *
Question *

* RequiredCreate Email Forms

I can't promise that it will be great or helpful advice, but I can promise that I'll listen and tell you what I think. And isn't that all that we really need sometimes?

So please, ask away! Anything goes.


Mama Maria Kenya - 3rd Annual Benefit Auction

Posted by Brandon |

What an inspiring evening we had last night at the 3rd Annual Benefit Auction for Mama Maria Kenya! I can't thank them enough for putting on such a great event and for all the work that Peter Kithene and the Mama Maria crew are doing bringing essential medical care to the the people of rural Kenya.

Peter was named a CNN Global Hero Medical Marvel award winner earlier this year. Please watch this video to learn more about this amazing man and Mama Maria Kenya...

And thank you to Yelp for getting involved with and promoting such a great charity. Without Yelp, who gave us free tickets to the event, we may have never heard about Mama Maria Kenya. But after last night, my wife - who is in medicine herself and knows lots and lots of people with interests in international medicine, including herself - and I will more than likely continue to be involved in one way or another and we hope to be able to attend the event again next year.

We won one of the items that we bid on in the silent auction, we also purchased a soccer ball to go to the children in Muhuru Bay and a couple of pieces of clothing and we won a gift basket as a consolation prize for the 50/50 drawing that we entered. We wished we could've bid on a couple of the items in the live auction - especially the two week trip to Kenya to see the Mama Maria Kenya clinic and go on safari for a few days that, I think, ended up going for $2,500 - a steal if you ask me. But we couldn't quite swing it this year, maybe sometime in the future.

The dinner portion of the evening was delicious and might've been worth the price alone ($80 per plate). Maya Soleil played some Afro-World music after the live auction and led us all in some African aerobics out on the dance floor. You should've seen your boy Brandon breaking it down! I can really dance when all I have to do is mimic the person on stage.

It really was inspiring to hear about the selfless work that Peter and Mama Maria Kenya are doing, and encouraging to see so many people so passionate and so willing to open up their pocketbooks to support their work.

This sounds really stupid, but earlier in the day, after a trip to Alderwood Mall, I was bemoaning the state of the American people. I had been so optimistic about America the last few weeks until my trip to the mall made me question that optimism. The worst of the worst of American values are on display at a mall in the suburbs on a Saturday. But then I went to this benefit and my optimism returned. These people didn't have to give money to a clinic in rural Africa, they wanted to and for no other reason than it was the right thing to do.

So thanks again to Peter, his wife Katrina and Mama Maria, thanks to Yelp for getting involved, and thanks to all of the donors who made the night successful.


The Fatty and Four Eyes Sports Report

Posted by Brandon |

My actual real life friend, John, wants to join the blogosphere and start a sports blog with me. We talked about it a little bit tonight and decided we're going to do it, so now we need a name. In a flash of memory and brilliance, I know exactly where we need to go with this.

It was anywhere from 1998-2001, not sure exactly when, we were at the Tacoma Dome for a Tacoma Sabercats hockey game. There was a fight, there were some penalties, there was some other ugliness and all that other good stuff that goes along with hockey and it all had to do with one player. So being the fine upstanding young men that we were, and probably fueled by a little bit of alcohol, we decided to head down to where the players from the opposing team came out of their locker room and do a little spirited heckling of the offending player.

So as he came back to the ice, we gave him the business as any good hockey fan should. As he came closer and closer, he locked eyes with us, listening to every word we said. As he passed us, he came up with this very clever and witty retort said in an unmistakable Russian accent:

"Shut up Fatty and four eyes"

It definitely shut us up...until we starting laughing our asses off. Fatty and four eyes? Oh, it was too perfect. He couldn't have described us better. Zing!

So there you go. Our blog has to incorporate the infamous Fatty and Four Eyes slam into the title. It's a sign from Don Cherry himself.

What I still don't understand is this...his name was something really Canadian like Matthew Campbell. Fucker was definitely not Russian. Son of a bitch wasn't even French Canadian let alone Russian. Where did that accent come from anyway?

On another note: I miss the Tacoma Sabercats. I think I'll wear my badass 'Cats jersey tomorrow.

UPDATE 11/21 - Shut Up Fatty and Four Eyes is a go!


Blog Culture Box Wednesday: Bond, James Bond

Posted by Brandon |

Thanks to Dan, Susannah, Grant and Matthew for answering my 007 questions this week.

What about you...
  1. Connery, Moore, Brosnan or Craig?
  2. If you were a Bond babe, what would your name be?
  3. "Now put your clothes back on, and I'll buy you a...."
  4. How do you take your martini?
Feel free to leave your answers in the comments.

And if you are interested in taking part in Blog Culture Box Wednesday, leave me a comment and let me know.


Yelp Likes Me, They Really Like Me

Posted by Brandon |

If I do all this blogging and writing for just one thing, I'd have to say it's for the recognition. Not for the friends that I've made or the cheap, super fun hobby it has provided me over the years or just having somewhere to vent and let myself go. Nope, I like awards.

So imagine how happy this made me this morning....

Yep, your boy Brandon is Seattle Yelp's Review Of The Day! How you like me now? Here's my winning review of Paseo...

I really didn't think that Paseo would live up the lofty hype that it has garnered or the expectations that I have put on a sandwich that many claim is the best in the entire country. I really didn't. I've even kind of written off the Fremont location because I didn't want to stand in line for a very long time with the possibility of great disappointment.

But when I heard about the Paseo opening in Ballard, I decided that the time was finally right to give it a go. Opening day would be an event, the lines probably wouldn't be longer than a few minutes, and if I was disappointed, my investment wouldn't be that great.

Now, after my first Paseo experience, my mind is racing trying to find excuses to drive from Edmonds into Fremont or Ballard just to pick me up some delicious pork-y goodness...

"Hey, that's my old dentist. I should go back to him."
"The baby loves the ducks at Golden Gardens."
"79 cent avocados at Top Banana!"
"Gas at Safeway is $3.96"
"Perhaps Centerfolds needs a bear."

So, as you can tell, I loved my pork sandwich. So incredibly tasty. And I have waged a lifetime war against the evils of the onion. I frigging hate onions! But the caramelized sweet onions they use had me gobbling up the ones that fell off my sandwich and onto the paper. That is so against my beliefs and character, I don't totally feel like myself today.

But I do agree with Bella S., the scallops are delicious on their own, but their flavor gets lost amidst all the other good stuff on the sandwich. I'll stick with the basics next time.

Perhaps my excuse to get back down into Ballard should just simply be "ME NEED PORK...ME NEED PORK" Yeah, that sounds good.

To celebrate, I think I might have lunch there today. Anybody in Seattle want to join me?


Hired For Her Boobs, Not Her Attention To Details

Posted by Brandon |

Almost every single Monday night, on my way to soccer, I drive by the corner of 212th and Highway 99. On that corner sits Urban Blend Espresso, a drive up espresso stand that proudly features girls in bikinis - just one of the many sexpresso stands in town - it's all the rage here in the suburbs of Seattle.

And every single Monday night I have noticed that whichever bikini clad babe that closes up the place always leaves the "Open" sign on. It hasn't been off on a Monday night for eight or nine weeks now.

Perhaps I'm expecting a little too much out of a barista in a swimsuit?

Or maybe I have been missing out on "Urban Blends Espresso: After Hours" this whole time? It is on Aurora after all.


My Ikea Weekend

Posted by Brandon |

My whole weekend, basically, was spent Ikea-ing.

On Saturday, we left for Ikea at 10 AM and didn't get back to our house until around 3 PM. That's actually not that bad for a trip to Ikea for us. When we first moved to California, we easily spent five hours in the Burkbank Ikea trying to figure out what to do with our apartment. But we had a plan this time and got it done in decent time.

Too bad we couldn't get everything we wanted in the car. After dropping mommy, Addie and all the crap off at home - 26 miles from the closest Ikea - I had to go back. I left at 4:00 and got home at around 7:30. We then built all the stuff we bought until after 1 AM. Oh yeah, we know how to party.

But it was all worth it because the Down With Pants! worldwide headquarters got a major upgrade...

The old computer room/office/junk room/secret lair is now starting to look like just a computer room/office/secret lair. It's not all put together or organized and the rest of the room is still messy, but it's starting to come along, finally, just four months after we moved in.

So here's to blogging in style and comfort! Cheers! Now I'm sure this blog will take off across the internets. Yeah, the old crappy desk must've been the problem.

BLOG CULTURE BOXERS NEEDED - I need two more people for this week's Blog Culture Box. If you are interested in participating this week or any future weeks, please leave me a comment. Thanks!


An In-Depth Indiana Jones Film Review

Posted by Brandon |


The Crystal Skull ends with a damn wedding? Indiana Jones gets married?! Fuck you George Lucas. Fuck. You.



Posted by Brandon |

The plan tonight was to go to a college basketball game at the University of Washington between the Huskies and Western Washington. Game started at 7:00, Death? got home at a little after 6:00 so we hightailed it out of the house very hopeful and confident that we'd make it there on time. But rain and traffic and traffic caused by rain meant that we pulled into the parking lot five minutes after tip off and we were both already a little pissed off and a little bit stressed out. Still, after some debate, we decided to go to the game anyway, so we parked, got Addie bundled up and set off on the long, rainy walk between the parking lot and Hec Edmundson Pavilion still confident that we'd get to see most of the game.

Once we got to the arena and turned the corner to where the ticket booths are, it was already 7:15, and much to our surprise, there was a line that stretched all the way across the plaza just to purchase tickets. Ugh. But we were there already, we might as well stay the course and go along with the plan. Another ten minutes passed and we barely moved - thanks UW for opening all of two ticket windows tonight! We didn't expect to get into the game by halftime at the rate it was going, so wet, cold, stressed out, pissed off and pretty much done with the whole thing, we decided to bail out and head back to the car. Things had not worked out and the evening had come to a screeching, disappointing halt. We both were in foul moods and the night threatened to careen into some very bad places.

Addie was hungry and needed to nurse, so once we got back to the car, she sat up front with us and did her thing. Throughout the whole evening to that point, she was a trooper - she loved the rain and the crowds and the whole ordeal. But in the car, she absolutely lit up, sitting in the front seat watching the rain fall on the car, wiping her hand on the fogged up windows, playing with the steering wheel and virtually every other button on the dashboard. She had a blast just sitting in the front seat of our car in a parking lot at the University of Washington on a nasty, rainy, windy night. And all of the frustration, stress, and moodiness that had consumed us minutes before, washed away. We too were having a blast right along with her in that parking lot.

When we finally decided it was time to go, we put her in her car seat and within minutes, she was out, sound asleep and perfectly peaceful. We hightailed it up to Dick's, enjoyed a Dick's Deluxe, fries and a chocolate shake in the comfort of our front seat while we listened to a fascinating author talk about his book about politics and sports on KUOW (A People's History of Sports in the United States by Dave Zirin) and after getting an extra Dick's Special to top it all off and still with a conked out little girl in the backseat, we finally headed for home.

A few minutes into our drive, I looked over at Death? and said exactly what we both had been thinking despite still being a little bit wet, a little bit cold, having our plan go haywire and having seen no basketball, "that turned out to be a really fun evening, anyway."


Blog Culture Box: Election Day Special Edition

Posted by Brandon |

If it's hard to read, click box to bigify

Thanks to Avitable, luna_x, The Fella and Kim for their wonderful answers.

What about you? Feel free to answer these questions in the comments...

If McCain wins I'm....
If Obama wins I'm....
Sarah Palin makes me...
Give me one bold election day prediction.



Posted by Brandon |

Please, for the love of God, get out and vote tomorrow.

I want you to vote for Obama, I want you to vote for Chris Gregoire for Washington governor and I want you to vote No on California Prop 8, but who am I to tell you what to do. If you still need convincing on Obama, please watch Colin Powell's endorsement of Obama...

It doesn't get much more convincing than that. Listen to Colin Powell, please vote Obama tomorrow.