I was making something in the oven yesterday and I needed to give it a quick baste, you know the usual, and so I opened up the door to the oven and did what I always do–stick my face right in there. I get blasted back the heat. My glasses fog up, I get flustered. I usually make some sort of unintelligible noise–“Dahhag.” This happens every single time I check on something in the oven. I have two theories. First, when I was a youth I had an oven that was eye-level for me so you could open it and look in while keeping your distance and the heat didn’t rush up into your face. So, I never learned. The second theory is that I’m an idiot. So dumb that I’m not sure I could learn to use an invisible fence, which is a skill that can be easily mastered by most dogs. And, speaking of blasts of heat…the mailbag.
Q: If you had to fire someone, how do you think you would do it? Give them the full song and dance about how great they are, or just go short and sweet? Dawn Sized, Gainesville, FL.
A: Assuming it wasn’t a hostile situation, I think I would try to let the person down as easy as possible while also keeping it short. In my opinion when someone is getting canned they don’t really want the full explanation right there (if there is one), they mostly just want to get out of the room, the situation–whatever. Later, they’ll be pissed off and demanding of answers, but right at that second they are probably dealing with some shock. Of course, I’ve never really fired anyone. The closest I came was back in my caddy supervision days. The course I was at was hosting a fairly significant local women’s event. It was big enough to attract some loopers from some other local courses. It was my job to assign these caddies to the players. A hit-or-miss process if there ever was one, but I had a fairly good match-making percentage. There was one exception. After the second day (of three) a player came up to me and requested that I did not give her the same caddy for the final day. Her reasons? “He talks too much AND SMELLS WEIRD.” Oh boy. That’s a double. So, this guy shows up for the last day–big grin on his face and drops the whole, “I’m with so and so again? I didn’t get her tee time.” And, that’s when I had to break the news. She’s going in another direction, Cowboy. He guessed that it was probably because he “fell on the 16th green yesterday.” A whole other problem, but NO, that wasn’t it. I just gave him the old, you know those women golfers look and sent him back to Llanerch or wherever he came from.
Q: Seeing as how Andy Reid is coming back to Philadelphia on Thursday (along with Donovan McNabb), can you go over the scenarios in your mind where it is acceptable to boo? Throaty Pipes, Ardmore, PA.
A: Let me start with a contradictory statement. I’m not going to take away anyone’s right to boo. If you want to be the person that boos–go ahead. If you want to scream “sucks,” after every player’s name in introductions–I’m not going to stop you. I won’t be there with you, but I won’t get righteous. That said, neither McNabb nor Reid should be booed on Thursday. The fan base has already proven it will likely receive McNabb in a somewhat friendly manner. Some boos will sprinkle, but it won’t be like David Stern at the NBA Draft. As for Andy Reid, there won’t be a great moment to boo him, so it’s likely that fans will continue to just be happy he left town. If Andy Reid ever appeared down the road, after his coaching career, I’d expect a McNabb-like reception. Mostly cheers. So, when to boo? I don’t think you should boo people who aren’t involved in the game. So the mayor shows up and you hate his politics? Not the time. Booing should mostly be reserved for the officials and the opposition. Bad calls, hated rivals, anyone on the ’86 Mets–all fair game. Is there a statute of limitations? Probably. I think we can stop booing Chipper Jones now that he’s retired. The booing of Scott Rolen probably should have ended when the ’08 team won the World Series. At some point, you start to look deranged and desperate. As far as your own players, I think it has to be effort based. Nate Allen really shouldn’t be booed. He’s just terrible. But if a player quits, or says something stupid about the fans? Fire away.
Q: If you started a brewery, what would you call it, and what would you name some of your beers? Samantha Addams, Boston, MA.
A: Is Sierra Nevada taken? I might call the brewery 3-Putt Territory. Look how well that name has served me here. And, it did take me a while to think of that name. It narrowly won out over, “Mike’s Blog,” and “Grossy’s Ha-Ha Hut.” I think I’ve gotten one solid compliment on the name over the years, and really how much more do you need? In terms of naming the actual beers, I have a question in response to the question. Have we gone too far? Should the brewery name and the style of beer be enough? Does calling something Monkey Astronaut IPA really spike sales? I guess the answer to that is it does, because the names of the beer keep getting stranger. More COLORFUL. So, I’ve got to come up with some names here. Putting a guy on the spot. Luckily, this is not unlike thinking up trivia team names, so I should be OK. Rapid Fire:
- Alimony ESB
- Beer Pong Lite
- No Tan Lines Summer Lager
- Placebo (Non-Alcoholic)
- Call a Cab Tripel
Q: Now that school has started back up I’ve seen multiple times the elated sprint off the school bus. First, were you this happy to get home and second, does anything in adult life compare? E.Z. Lyamused, Coatesville, PA.
A: I imagine that people with kids would say that putting the kids on the bus is pretty MAGICAL indeed, but I’m not at that point. I’ve definitely seen kids run like crazy off the bus and I’m trying to think back in time to see if I ever possessed so much GLEE. When I got home school there were only a few things that could be on the agenda. Eat Pop Tarts, play Nintendo, pretend I’m in the NBA and dunk on my 8-ft rim, watch A Different World in syndication–all of these things should have had me at a dead sprint, but if I remember correctly I didn’t have that much heart. I mostly walked. Our driveway was upwards of 75 yards. That’s a long way to HAUL IT with a Lands End on your back. And some of the time I got dropped off down the street (and downhill) from my house, so forget that. I think the really young kids run because they are actually happy to see their parents. Then things change and you are praying no one is home when the bus drops you off so you can BE ODD AS SH*T at your leisure. What do adults gain that type of simple pleasure out of? I’m not sure. Making good “time” to work? Finding cheap gas? Having your carry-on bag fit through the damn slot? There’s plenty out there to be JAZZED about.
Q: Some people like designer bags, or have to have a certain brand of sneakers, but I think name brands are most important for the little things. Ever try to use generic aluminum foil? Whon Ply, Sarasota, FL.
A: This is a true statement. Generic Aluminum foil has the consistency of tissue paper. Exhale with greater than usual force and you could tear a hole clean through the stuff. Are we even sure it’s aluminum? It may be an illusion. When it comes to foil, you’ve got to go with Reynolds Wrap. That’s the only brand of foil I am aware of? I’m sure you can buy a roll at Williams Sonoma that’s made entirely out of recycled cans of Shasta for $34, but that’s probably going a bit too far. Reynolds will serve you fine. And, with kitchen items, it doesn’t stop with the foil. Paper Towels? Generic paper towels are great if you want something to decorate your paper towel holder. God forbid you need to use one. Trash Bags? Please throw the entire box into a Hefty or a Glad. That’s all they are good for.
Q: I have a friend who consistently keeps magazine cologne samples in his pocket. Open. It’s one of those things that is out in the open, but you still can’t talk about it. Should we just be glad that he smells like cologne all the time? Is he hiding something? Where does he get them all? Tenzing Nosegay, Frankfort, KY.
A: That is very odd and also admirably frugal. Why commit to a full two ounces of one cologne and pay those exorbitant prices when you can simply go to the nearest news stand and rip your way to a different fresh scent every day. Wearing a scent is a tricky thing. I prefer to smell clean, rather than to walk around with a noticeable aroma. Do I always accomplish this? I DON’T KNOW, but that’s the goal. To me, a lot of cologne hints that you are trying to hide something. It’s like if the dog lets one happen on the rug and then you rain down Febreze, I don’t care what the commercials say it’s going to smell like Febreze AND dog grumper. So, if you are rocking a steady cologne, I might think–still in 7th grade, OR has a BIT of a B.O. problem. Either one. I don’t want to be known by a smell, good or bad, really. I’ve worked with people who you know are in the room before you see them because they APPLY GENEROUSLY. That’s not for me. As far as the samples go? I don’t really know what to make of that. I have rubbed these on my shirt in moments of desperation, and I’ve seen people use them as de facto air fresheners in their dressers or between sofa cushions, but to use one as a part of your outfit seems a bit out there. My best guess is that he can’t afford to do his laundry.