Tuesday, July 31, 2007

KG To Boston

After 12 years in Minnesota, it appears that KG is going to Boston. The Wolves would in return receive Al Jefferson (young future all-star F/C), Gerald Green (young G/F with all-star potential), Theo Ratliff (center with expiring contract which will free up 10 million in cap room next year), Sebastian Telfair (former top 10 pick at PG with talent), Ryan Gomes (young foward with good potential) and two future 1st round picks.
Dealing KG will hurt the team in the short term, but in the long run it looks like a great deal. My prediction is no more that 40 wins this year, but within the next 2 or 3 years the Wolves will be one of the top 5 teams in the Western Conference.


What The Poet Said To The Sea

Quick hits, broadcasting live from the new MacBook at the Brainerd Public Library (wireless Internet, don't you know):

1. Poppy is pregnant like a pumpkin.

2. I'm worried about my cat. He's getting pretty old, and he's starting to show it.

3. Gumshoe 4 should be out any day now.

4. I have a Northwestern assignment: read Utopia. I think I'll do it in a coffee shop while wearing a turtleneck. Oh God, does Sam Walker own a turtleneck? If not, it's only a matter of time.

5. According to a letter I recieved the other day, I will need a 4000 cubic inch backpack for my Northwestern hiking/camping. I don't think my current one is big enough, so I might need to buy one, along with some hiking boots for the 5-7 hours of daily hiking we'll be doing. Maybe I'll bond with the dude who has to carry me up the side of the mountain.

6. I need to check Northwestern's policy on knives. I hope it's like the U of M's: if the blade is 4 inches or less it's fine. I started using a knife this summer, and it's turned out to be quite useful. I'm definitely bringing one on the camping trip and I'd like to have one around for opening, prying, whittling, juggling, and other knife-based activities. Perhaps the student handbook can answer my questions.

7. You know who I haven't seen in a while? Matt Capelle. Capelle, I gotta get that Lord of the Rings radio show from you again.

Also, Andrew Kubas, it's been too long.

8. The Crow Wing County Fair opens today. This is my year to find the medallion. I can just FEEL it.


Sunday, July 29, 2007

Age Of Consent

I had a rather pivotal night of work tonight.

At about 8:20 p.m., I had one inside (staying at the resort [jack shit for tips]) table of 8 who were grumpy about their bitchy kids, and one outside ($$$ if you play your cards right) table of 8 who seemed to really dislike me. I was feeling down; the outside table just seemed totally dissatisfied with me. Motherfuckers called me "Mike" about an hour into service. They seemed to want a super-professional, elegant, graceful, French-fluent ballerina for a waiter, not dumpy old Max Kuehn. I was strongly considering my alternate summer job options for the future, such as the blue-chip ditch-digging racket Sam and Josh are in on.

Someone at the table made a little joke, I joked back, and they started to warm up to me. I got a sweet bit going; one dude kept talking about how he was paying the bill, so I was pandering to him in an outlandish fashion ("Can I get you anything else? Especially you?"). The capper came when I brought out the bill and gave it to the guy, and he said "I've been lying to you Max, I'm not actually the one paying the bill!"

I stood up straight, sighed deeply, and said "Well, to Hell with you then."

And they LOVED it. They were applauding, hooting, rolling in the aisles. After their meal, they took a picture with me in the lobby.

In conclusion: apparently, there is a place at Lost Lake Lodge for an ironic asshole waiter. If you get the people in the right mood you can basically stand there and insult them and they pay you for it. Kinda like Al's Breakfast, but with better tips and fewer health code violations.

P.S.: I hit 40 hours tonight and I'm working a double tomorrow. Delicious overtime gravy.


Wednesday, July 25, 2007

The Sharing Is For Cool Kids

Today at work I had a little kid ask for a pancake with a chocolate syrup smiley face on them. I, being the helpful fellow I am, complied with his request. He was away from the table when I carried the pancake out, but he hurried over when he saw the food. He stood over the plate, looked at his mom, looked back at the pancake, then threw up all over it.

It was very straightforward, not at all dramatic. He might have just been saying "hello," except instead of words coming out of his mouth, it was barf. His mom was flipping out, but the kid didn't seem too worried about it:

Mom (concerned): What happened, honey?
Kid (matter-of-fact): I threw up.

Amused by this ad at the Credit Union the other day:

Bank advertisement, or Yeerk recruiting literature?


Monday, July 23, 2007


i recently turned 19. i really wanted to splooge and buy myself a fun present...

i've known for awhile now that guster was coming to apple valley on july 22/23. unfortunately, they sold out for both shows months ago. so this got me a little down/depressed.

that moment has passed.

i just noticed that i still have a solid $11.53 on my itunes account. i've been struggling to decide on a quality album to purchase. part of me wants to buy ben kweller's latest album, but it's about a year old and i kind of want something fresh. i've also kind of wanted to buy rufus wainwright's "release the stars" album but i kind of want his old-school "poses" cd. any suggestions?

also: i've been working at arby's. the co-workers are quite interesting...all of them are really nice...but not very educated. i have really fun conversations with one of the managers named amanda. she uses words or phrases like "tooken" or "i seen yesterday"...and i just find it hard to take her seriously.

then there is my man dan. he is (i'll ballpark it) about 70 years old. and kind of hard-hearing. he usually runs the fry machine thing and it is fun.

kubas: "hey dan, we need more chicken tenders down."
dan: "more jalepeno poppers?"
kubas: "no, more chicken tenders."
dan: "more popcorn chicken?"
kubas: "chicken tenders."

by this time my other manager, kim, (she is easily my favorite) pipes in...

dan, nonchalantly: "coming right up."

welcome to the real world?

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Two Ships Exploding In The Night

I have received my MacBook.

I'm on chapter 13 of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, whatever those turn out to be.

I have tomorrow off from work.

Half past nine, and all is well.

P.S.: To anyone who reads this blog and is a facebook friend of mine; sorry, bras. My facebook account is tied to my now-defunct i_shall_avenge_my_uncle (a smart, long-term choice in email addresses, that one), and it therefore rarely occurs to me to check it. I will search for some way to rectify the situation and move over to a more happenin' email. And then, then friend you all again I guess?

I'd love to say "Fuck facebook, if you corporate groupthink sheep want to talk to me you can call me, on my ROTARY TELEPHONE!", but honestly, facebook is a nifty way to keep sort-of in touch with a wide variety of people. Although I'd love to say that I call up every one of my friends every day, I'm just not that socially conscious of a person.

P.P.S.: I was reading the ridiculous Time article about lolcats earlier today, and I thought "Well, at least Tirth is in on the phenomenon now." What I should have been thinking, however, was obviously LOLPUGS.

So it's come to this.


Tuesday, July 17, 2007

The Thing About Transformers Is, You Don't Have To Choose Between A Car Chase Or A Robot Fight, Because The Cars ARE Robots

I saw Transformers with my Pa the other day. I walked into the theater with high expectations (the Strib doesn't just hand out four-star reviews, you know [and unlike John Hansen's four-star selections, I usually enjoy the Strib's), and I gotta say: they were fulfilled.

In a movie with this many sweet robots, all the actors really have to do is meet a few basic requirements:

Our hero, Shiite LaBouferino or some such nonsense, was an acceptably underdog (and yet not too uncool) protagonist--check.

The dad stayed out of the way, and the mom was unexpectedly hilarious--check plus.

His love interest was a hot babe who managed to pose provocatively by a car hood for about six minutes straight--check.The army dudes were heroic-ish and said badass stuff like "Bring the rain!"--check.

John Voight brought a commanding screen presence to his role as some government guy, while reminding me of a pudgy Christopher Walken--check plus.The hacker subplot was kind of unnecessary, and the female analyst was deadly dull, but the black hacker dude was sweet ("Lemme work my magic!")--check minus.

John Turturro got peed on-excuse me, had coolant drained onto him-by a robot--check plus plus.

Now that that's out of the way: man, those robots were sweet. Not only did they look great (I'm sure the money spent on CG could have fed the entire continent of Africa for about a week), they had ATTITUDE. Plenty of movies have sweet robots--how many have sweet robot banter?Plus, they were all GM products. Clearly, alien robots know quality technology when they see it.

Final review: better than Armageddon, not as good as Independence Day. Man, now I'm just imagining how much better Transformers could have been with Will Smith in it.
Look at that soulful son of a bitch

There would have been no need for him to replace any of the other characters. He could have just parachuted in during the finale and punched out Megatron himself. But he'd have to have just said (pluskwam perfekt mit Sub II, oh snap) something like "Boo-yah! or "Ya heard?!?" or "Wasssup?!?" first.


Friday, July 13, 2007


30 Bonus Points to whomever figures out this post's title's meaning first.

P.S.: Despite the Apple Corporation's repeated efforts to stop me, I'm extremely close to actually purchasing a computer.


Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Ain't No Party Like A Drug Free Party

Sorry it's been so long since I posted, although I see Tirth has been keeping up the ol' mustache blog in my absence. Good show, Tirth.

2 things:

1. The treasure hunt is tommorow at 5 p.m. I requested the day off a month ago. I got my schedule for this week yesterday (due to my Canadian voyage), and, what do you know, they had me working 8 to 4. I was unable to get it off on such short notice.

You might imagine that with such a schedule I'd be reluctant to participate in the hunt, but I'm feeling pretty sanguine about the whole thing. I've packed up the van with a variety of supplies, and I've come up with some entertaining little secret agent gadgets that will blow all your minds. I plan to drive carefully, call everybody, and make a party out of it.

I'm still a bit concerned, though, especially about the working alone part. One of the nice parts about previous hunts was that if you ever lost enthusasim, or had to concentrate on the road, or were stuck on a clue, there was always somebody else to drive the car and carry the team for a while. If I'm flying solo and I get tired or dispirited or bored, I'm just not sure if I'm going to have the energy to keep going, you know? I won't be able to say "Okay John, run across this field in the blistering heat" or "Okay Sam, scurry up the side of that building." On the other hand, I'm under the impression that in this hunt skipping a clue or two won't be a dealbreaker, especially not for the informants.

Just got to keep my hopes up, I suppose. Just drink some Gatorade and call Mattson to insult him--you know, the usual pick-me-ups.

2. Larry Wilmore, the Daily Show's "Senior Black Correspondent" was staying at Lost Lake Lodge last week.

I considered going up and asking for his autograph, or at least asking him about the show, but I realized that I didn't remember his name, and I was too embarrassed to say "Hey, aren't you the black guy from the Daily Show?"


Sunday, July 08, 2007

"Honestly, It's a bloodbath"

I am a pretty staunch Harry Potter fan, although of course not as fanatical as the folks who are planning to camp out of bookstores eons before Deathly Hallows is released on July 21.I took the easy way out:I ordered a copy from B&N, and I am promised that the treasure will be delivered on the day it is released in bookstores.

I've been browsing through a myriad - a word faithfully despised by Mrs. Niemi - websites who have devoted their time and energy to the exalted existence of Harry Potter.Here's what I found:

1) Amazon.com features a customer discussion forum, which as of last count, has about 27182818284590 topics ranging from "None of the characters ever poo" to "Snape is a Riddle" to "Mr.Monk meets Harry Potter."
Suffice it so say that most of these topics are the "brilliant" productions of equally brilliant and productive minds that have a lot of free time at hand.
Access the forum here

2)Mugglenet.com has been the most satisfying experience so far.The webmasters have diligently decorated their homepage with a really good HP theme, and the homepage features recent HP events like OOTP (for non-Harryies, Order of The Phoenix, the movie) premier in England, JK Rowling's interview on the Jonathan Ross show.The links on the left side of the page lead to many interesting things both about the movies and the books.It was Jo's interview with Ross that prompted me to write here.Poking out from the glib formalities of the interview is this memorable snippet:

Ross: So, we've heard that two people die in the book...
Mighty Gal Jo: Actually, more than two people die now.[Pay close attention now]In fact, I think it is an absolute bloodbath...

Oh yeah!Bring on the bloodbaths, Jo!

3)HP-Lexicon.org is an uber-geeky HP fan site that specializes in formulating very complex and painstakingly accurate timelines of the entire HP series.For instance, they punctuate their discussion of individual chapters with dates, (and whenever possible, even time) when each event is supposed to be taking place.
Thinking of majoring in "The symbolic relevance of timelines in the Harry Potter universe and its impact on the psyche of the series as a whole", anyone?

4)JKRowling.com is an authoritative source on debunking all foul-smelling HP rumours (sample:Luna is Snape's daughter).Don't expect to find those cheesy discussion forums.However,the graphics are very sublime.

Anyway, all this exhausting sleuth work made me think of one important character that everyone has so cruelly overlooked: Remus J Lupin (Professor Emeritus of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry).

The poor bloke has seen nothing but misery his whole damn life:he was bitten by a psycho werewolf when he was a kid;he was rejected from Hogwarts as a student until Dumbledore became Headmaster;he was shunned by the wizarding world because of his er...problem;he was unceremoniously ousted by the handiwork of Severus Snape at the end of book three.

But here's more:the guy is now absolutely alone in the world.He has to painfully suffer the death of two of his best friends, Sirius and James, and also the betrayal of his third best friend, Peter.And now (that is, by the end of book 6), he has to suffer the death of Dumbledore, his figurative stepping stone in the wizarding world.

Maybe Jo should cut this miserable fellow some slack, you know?


Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Hodgkin's Law of Parallel Planetary Development

My mom and I were channel surfing at about 10:30 the other night when we came across the second half of an episode of Star Trek. Both my parents, my mother in particular, were very big fans of the original Star Trek series. I haven't watched too much Trek, but a very entertaining half-hour television experience has me thinking that I really ought to watch the whole first series some time.

According the the "episode description" thing from the cable, the show concerned Kirk and Spock's mission to stop a rebel Starfleet captain who had violated the Prime Directive by using advanced technology to help a primitive society, the Kohms, in their war against another tribe known as the Yangs.

My mom and I arrived just in time to see Kirk punch the evil captain a few times, then vault over a low wall to avoid a phaser blast. Eventually, the whole group was captured by the Yangs, who resembled a bunch of blond white guys in fur shirts, talking like American Indians. At this point, Kirk and Spock made the astounding deduction that for some reason, humanity on this planet had followed a path almost identical to that it had on Earth, save for the fact that the Cold War had been won by the Commies. For you see, the Kohms were in fact Communists, and the Yangs were Yankees! At this point in the show, a tan fellow, naked to the waist, stepped through a doorway carrying OLD GLORY and the dramatic orchestra suddenly played the first few bars of the Star Spangled Banner in a menacing minor key. It was sweet.

A little later in the show, Kirk and the evil captain were both attempting to convince the Yang cheif of their own innocence and their rival's guilt (I think the preceding sentence may be grammatically unsound, but it gets the point across, don't you think?). At this point, the following exchange took place:

Chief: We have a way of telling good from evil.

My mom: Thunderdome

Chief: You will speak the sacred words. Surely the tongue of the evil one will burn when he...(blah blah blah, long shot of Shatner looking pained and confused, drama drama drama)

Kirk: Wait! Is it not also written that good is stronger than evil?

Max: Thunderdome

(Cut to next scene--Kirk and the evil captain are bound together at one wrist, standing in a circle of sand. The chief sticks a knife into the ground a few paces away.)

Max & mom: Thunderdome!

Then there was a very entertaining fight, then some inspiring patriotic mumbo-jumbo, then Shatner looking very pleased with himself as he speaks some final line about "helping them to discover their freedom" or something.

Very appropriate for the 4th of July.


Monday, July 02, 2007

Busy, Busy, Busy

In the unforgettable movie The Untouchables, there is this memorable scene that goes like this:

Robert De Niro, who plays Capone, is hosting several of his goon-cronies in an elaborate dining.The cronies, ala kindergarteners, are sitting obediently around a lavish dining table, their heads stooping low.

Then Capone,with a smug smile on his face, jauntily asks something to this effect:
"What is it that pleases me the most?"
"What captures my imagination?"

His faithful cronies trip over themselves to please their boss:

Capone dismisses all of them regally, and then, boisterously proclaims:

He proceeds to pick up a finely crafted baseball bat from a silver platter and...Well ,the rest is not relevant to this blog.

I invoked this scene specifically to pose my own rhetorical question.In this magnificent, lethargic summer vacation, what is it that gives me the most joy?
I found out that answer last night, and being a magnanimous blogger, I shall share my joy.

Here is that little nugget:

The following AP Exams have been received by UCLA:
Exam Score
Biology 5
Chemistry 5
Economics: Macroeconomics 5
Economics: Microeconomics 5
English Language & Composition 5
Government & Politics: United States 5
Math: Calculus AB 5
Physics B 5
Psychology 5

This is a very pleasant shock for me.I was thinking something entirely different about a couple of subjects: Chemistry ( I took the exam without taking the class) and Physics.
But anyway, as Blong would say, "All's good, Life's good"...

However,the best part about this whole affair is that I didn't have to fork out, as Maxwell Kuehn would say, Eight D's to call AP phone service.My overly meticulous and diffident college UCLA took care of this.They assiduously keep track of all the valuable documents they are supposed to receive from their students and then they post these documents on the students' online account.

Last night, I happened to - or, as Bokonon would say, was meant to - browse around my account on UCLA while devouring Jack Nicholson's performance as Joker in the 1989 hit Batman, and that's how the Grinch stole the Christmas.

P.S. I am proud of myself for three accurate citations in this post.