PATRICK MCVAY

WRITER

My Musings

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Talking Mustard

How long has it been since we last talked mustard?

Too long, that’s for sure. It’s like mustard isn’t even part of my life anymore, the way I never bring it up in any serious discussion on the future of human beings.

But trust me on this: it’s a huge part of my life. Rarely does a day go by when I don’t think about mustard. Or consider when I might next use mustard. Or have little droplets of mustard floating around deep down inside my subconscious mind, such that I don’t even realize I’m thinking about mustard until months pass and the media start to get all over me: Hasn’t Mentioned Mustard Yet This Year! and so forth.

Sorry, but I have mentioned it. Maybe the media just aren’t receptive to hearing it. I’ve said things like, “How come we have so damned much mustard, honey?” And the response, invariably, has been “Costco.”

My parents used to have too much mustard in their house as well, but that’s because they entertained. Needless to say, if they were entertaining, they were serving mustard. Roasted mustard, creamed mustard, baked mustard. Not to mention that some people requested it as a condiment (!).

Bear in mind that I’ve actually been consuming my fair share of mustard during this so-called “period of silence.” What, I’m going to go to a Red Sox game and not eat the free mustard they have? It’s just sitting out there in gallon-sized tubs with attachments that squirt out as much of the golden goo as you’d like! How foolish it would be not to take advantage of that.

Heading to the ballpark tonight with mustard on my mind.

 

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Bonehead

You may be a young reader unaware of the living, evolutionary quality of the English language, but I’m not so young any longer, and I remember when a person who removed the bones from a chicken would be said to be “boning” the animal. Back then, when I was just a kid in the late 1800s (or so), I used to think: How odd, that removing bones is called boning. Shouldn’t it be called unboning, or deboning?

Then, the other day, I had to prepare my newest favorite dish called sarde in saor (sweet and sour sardines – but you knew that!) and was directed by Jamie Oliver in how to “debone” the sardines. Dear old dad, a debonafide glossophile (Iook it up), is turning in his grave at the thought of deboning replacing boning in common parlance.

Interestingly, m-w.com (Merriam Webster online), which defines the transitive verbs “bone” and “debone” nearly identically (“to remove the bones from”), calls a person who debones meat as a “deboner” but makes no mention of a person who bones meat as a “boner.”

This also makes me wonder if ever, in the history of English literature, a character has been referred to as a “debonair deboner.” Will ask the people at Google to scan their databases for that pairing of words.

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Dust In The Wind

I’m sure you’re wondering how my brewing life is going these days, so let me tell you: it's going tremendously well! Did you know that I’ve been voted “homebrewer most likely to believe he’s going to brew commercially in an old barn?” And no, I don’t own a barn. (Yet!)

But I do own a Grainfather. If you don’t know what one is, would you believe that it’s a new, consumer-level brewing device that enables you to make fantastic beer just by sprinkling magic beer dust into fresh water, and then bottling? Hopefully not, as that would expose your gullibility. I’m told that the technology to concoct magic beer dust is still several years away. Needless to say, I’m working on my own version of magic beer dust in my beer laboratory. I think we can all agree that America can’t be made great again without a drinkable version of instant, powdered beer.

In the meantime, there is the Grainfather, a device that steeps grains to extract sugars and then boils the wort, all in one chamber, before pumping out the precious liquid gold through a chiller and into a fermenter. It’s practically like magic beer dust!

I suppose, actually, that the closest thing we humans have to magic beer dust is dry malt extract, which certainly is dusty, and, when mixed with fresh, clean Quabbin Reservoir water and inoculated with a dose of dry yeast, is magically transformed into beer.

(But the grainfather is still much better).

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Little Nipper

You’re at a meeting at 10 in the morning, and your colleague suddenly pulls out a flask and takes a haul. What do you do?

What does anyone do? None of you on staff in your combined 300+ years of office experience has ever encountered a co-worker flask-nipping in a meeting during normal work hours. Everyone looks at each other with consternation. Brows are knitted furiously. Is someone going to confront this guy about his drinking issues?

But no one has the guts. And so he keeps on doing it, even in meetings with The Big Boss, who is too nonplussed to know what to say. It goes on and on, with the co-worker drinking from his flask at all hours of the day, at his desk, at lunch, before heading home on his donkey-rickshaw (environmentally friendly, you think? Do you have any clue how much methane each mule and donkey produces each year?). He’s such a goofy dude that on those rare occasions when you all get a drink after work, a beer or two doesn’t seem to make him any looser than he seems during a regular day at the office. But generally speaking, beside his taking regular hauls off the flask and following up with flamboyant, Doc Holliday-esque tubercular coughing fits as he chokes down the liquid, the slugging doesn’t seem to negatively affect his performance. There are even clandestine sobriety tests, as office mates drop papers in front of him to see if he’ll stumble when helping to pick them up. He doesn’t.

The colleague dies one day and his desk is cleaned out, whereupon the flask, hidden in his bottom drawer, empty, is available to be analyzed. Advanced assays are run, whereupon it’s discovered that there is no sign of moonshine inside the flask, but instead ultra high-test French roast coffee (cold brew).

If you're willing to play the flask nipper, I'll outfit you with the means of surreptitiously recording people's reactions at your office job. It'll be a riot! Then, we'll project the recordings onto the west side of my house from dusk to dawn every day so that people walking down the street after dark will be treated to performance art.

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Trumpian Tweetage Haiku Continuum

“Caravans” coming

Must go nuclear option.

NO MORE DACA DEAL!

 

We don’t have a wall

Not going to have a country

FUND THE BORDER WALL

 

Trade Wars are good and

Easy to win. They get cute?

Don't trade; we win big!

 

Gun-adept coaches

Weapons-talented teachers

Instantly Shooting

 

Promote the Fake Book

Mentally Deranged Author

False Information

 

Now that collusion

With Russia: a total hoax

FBI/Russia

 

Kim Jong Un, I too

Have a nuclear button.

And my button works.

 

Tax cut/Reform bill

Massive Alaska Drilling

Incredible Year

 

United Nations

Sanctions on North Korea

World wants Peace, not Death

 

False Accusations.

Women I don't know. FAKE NEWS!

Collusion. Russia.

 

Army Navy Game

COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF'S TROPHY

Congratulations

 

Pelosi/Schumer

He's bad on Crime, Life, Border.

Vets. Guns. VOTE ROY MOORE!

 

Time Magazine Called

Prob'ly "Person of the Year"

I took a pass. Thanks!

 

The Christmas Story

Mother, Father, Baby Son

Jesus Christ. Bahrain.

 

Matt Lauer just fired

When will top executives

Be fired for Fake News? 

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