Ten Songs For When You Are All Out of Bubblegum

It started a week ago when Dan Swensen (@surlymuse) posted the song Anvil of Cromm from the Conan soundtrack to Google+.  Jeff Couturier (@JeffCouturier) said he was going to add the song to his “All Out of Bubblegum” playlist. Inspired by the concept, Dan, Random9q (@random9q), Jeff, and myself started building the ultimate All Out of Bubblegum Playlist.  A portion of what we came up with has been bashed into a YouTube playlist by Jeff.

We all kick ass in our own special way… you did realize that is what an ‘All Out of Bubblegum’ playlist is, right?  It is about ass-kicking and letting someone else take the names.  It is no holds barred, take no prisoners, total annihilation.  Some do it through physical force and others do it through careful calculations.  There is no single right way to kick-ass.  It is the ultimate bit of pragmatism, actually.  So long as ass is being kicked, literal ass or figurative ass, then that was the right way to do it.

This means the music people want to kick ass to isn’t all the same. For me, I tend to prefer orchestral elements, because when I kick-ass I imagine I am doing it in the most epic way possible.  I also like short bombastic punk rock elements, which I see as for those brief but intense moments of ass-kicking.

Before I give you my Top 10, I want to give out a freebie, one of the original ass-kicking songs ever, just to set the mood.

Flight of the Valkyries

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Six Spots to Get Shawarma in Chicago

Ever notice there is a lot of talk about going out for Shawarma lately?  I have no idea why…

My first question when I heard about Shawarma was – what is shawarma? Isn’t a gyro?  It looks like gyro…

Shawarma is not gyro! Gyro is normally a blend of beef and lamb and shawarma is normally never beef and only occasionally lamb.  Wait, now I’m more confused.

From the Go Mideast website they say –

Most shawarma is made with lamb or chicken, though I’ve also had a lamb/beef mixture, and goat.

What else goes inside is a matter for the restaurant. The best shawarmas I’ve had were in Abu Dhabi and were made in small pita breads which were sliced open and included tomatoes, garlic sauce, pickles, tabouli, and french fries…. (gomideast.com)

So really, shawarma is like the American hamburger, it has some core fundamentals but what makes it a hamburger is going to change from region to region and cook to cook. Continue reading “Six Spots to Get Shawarma in Chicago”

Keeping Record of Your Accomplishments

A co-worker made a mistake at work last week.  It was admittedly a dumb mistake, but in the grand scheme of things, it wasn’t a big mistake or anything that couldn’t be fixed.  No one got hurt, no laws were broken, and really the only thing affected was ego.

I could see he was beating himself up and I realized this was the opportunity to say the things I want to hear when I screw something up.  So I told him, “Of all the mistakes you are going to make in life, this is the smallest and least important of them all. Don’t waste energy dwelling on it.”
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My Mom’s Gift to Me

Every day I go to the same coffee shop and order the same thing. It is one of those constants in my life. I’ve written about it often because honestly, it is sometimes the best part of my day.  This morning I was running late and there was a line at the counter that was moving REALLY SLOWLY (probably not, perception is weird) so I stood and shuffled my feet in the line until it was my turn.

They know my order:  medium house coffee to go.  Yes, it is a coffee shop, not a Starbucks. No fancy names.  I noticed that right before she took my order the woman behind the counter filled the thermal carafe with cream.  She then asked me if I took cream in my coffee, which I thought was weird since it wasn’t part of the normal ordering process. It took me a second to realize that she was going to give me the cream and have me take it over to the table where that stuff is kept.  I then offered to do just that for you. Continue reading “My Mom’s Gift to Me”

Strangers Live Here Now

Canyon Ferry Lake

I own things in my heart that I don’t actually own.  Yes, that is as weird as it sounds.

I grew up on a lake in Montana.  It wasn’t a private lake. It was shared with all sorts of people with cabins who lived there during the weekends on the summer, but only a few families lived there year round. This is one of the reasons why I claimed the lake as mine. I was there month after month. I was there when the lake was too cold to use. I was there during the intense storms, all the bad moments.  I was there saving neighbors’ docks that were pulled free from southerly storms. Continue reading “Strangers Live Here Now”