Rich Koslowski: Writer, Artist, Genius
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I'M GOIN' TO TEXAS!

"Warm winds blowin'...

Heat an' blue sky...

And a road that goes forever...

I'm goin' to Texas!"

Chris Rea, Road To Hell album (buy it! unbelievable album)

Just got back from a 10 day vacation to good ole Austin, Texas. Went down for my cousin's daughter's wedding where Stella was the beautiful flower girl in a dress that mama made for her. Stayed with our good friends Wayne Beamer and his wonderful wife Sandy Travis where they did their very best to uphold the fine southern tradition of hospitality. Not only did Wayne-o act as our own private chaufeur and drive us all around Austin but he also "cowboyed up" when it was time to put on the feed bag!

One week before leaving on our trip Sandy (my wife Sandy not Wayne-o's) and I were up late watching tv and I came across the Travel Channel's Man vs. Food program. I asked Sandy if she'd ever seen it. Nope. I said it was a good show and showcased a lot of restaurants that I myself would love to eat at. So what city do they highlight on this particular episode on this particular night? Yep, you guessed it...Austin, Texas! Serendipity!

So we watched and drooled as the "man" took on the finest cuisines and we also took notes determined to get to at least one of these places they highlighted. And yes we did my friends.

Yes we did.

The Salt Lick. One of the world's most famous barbeque joints that features one of the only open woodfire bbq pits left in Texas (if not the only). You walk into the most amazing smell and the first thing you see is the meat on the pit sizzling and popping away. Instantaneous mouth-watering begins. My stomach actually lurched with anticipation. I was giddy! I was happy! I frantically searched for the waiter to find us a freakin' seat!

We quickly ordered up our food with me and Wayne-o and cousin-in-law Dave ordering the all-you-can-eat option.

The beef brisket is evil. I ate about 1 1/2 pounds of that alone. And as the host of Man vs Food suggested I ordered the "burnt ends" of the brisket where the flavor is at its most concentrated. And just like he did on the show when he bit into it I had "a moment."

Best brisket I've ever had. Period. It made me cry.

The sausage was also outstanding and this is coming from a guy whose dad is a World Champion German Sausage Maker, folks! I ate about 3/4 of a pound of that. Nice smooth smokey flavor. Robust but not overly so. Juicy but not greasy. Very nice.

The ribs were good. Not great but very good. A couple pieces were a little on the dry side but I'm sure they were downgraded in my opinion after being so overwhelmed by the brisket. If I probably only had the ribs not knowing how delicious the brisket was I'd've probably been very pleased.

The BBQ sauce is a family recipe and very unique. It gave the meat a nice carmalized glaze that was a bit sweet, a bit hearty and just a wee bit vinegary almost...but vinegary in a good way, trust me.

We pretty much ignored the filler...the potato salad, cole slaw, bread, etc. I mean really, what's the point? I nibbled on those items just to clear the palate between meats.

Best BBQ experience I ever had. And the severe weather that rolled in almost killed the trip. Man, when Wayne-o gave us the weather report the night before I was bummed. I actually could not get to sleep I was so disappointed. This was to be the highlight of the trip (aside from the wedding of course.) and now he was telling us it might not happen as the roads literally get flooded out during severe rainstorms and become unpassable! But it worked out. We fed. And fed. And fed. I was home. Oh god, here I go...I'm crying again...

The Bat Bridge is also a highlight of Austin. Unreal. 1.5 million bats fly out every night from under a downtown bridge where they nest. You get there with the throngs of other onlookers just before dusk and you wait as you start to hear the chirping get louder and louder. Then you start to see them drop. One by one they start dropping. then dozens. Then hundreds. Then you witness a stream of thousands and thousands of bats just pour out in a line out into the southern sky. And it goes on for 20+ solid minutes! It was one of the coolest things I've ever seen.

Wedding was great. Margaux and Aaron had a beautiful wedding, reception and dinner. Great fun was had by all.

We also got to stay with my older sister Karin up in Chico for a few days before the wedding so getting to visit her and her kids also made the trip an all-around wonderful experience.

And Oh Yeah! If you're ever down in Austin you'll also want to visit AUSTIN BOOKS & COMICS on 5002 N. Lamar Blvd. Owner Brad Bankston has one of the most impressive stores I've ever set foot in. Loaded with comics and one of the largest selections of TPBs and graphic novels I've ever seen. I wish I could have spent hours, nay, DAYS looking through every rack but, alas, time was not on our side. Austin Books & Comics also had a nice selection of my own books. I happily signed up the copies they had, bought a hefty stack of books, and vowed to one day return to that store!

And so we're back in WI. We knew we were officially back when our teeth started rattling. No, not from the cold (although it was cold when we got back), from the friggin' freeway! We have the worst roads in America. Bar none. The whole drive was smooth other than in Wisconsin. And yeah I realize our severe weather fluctuations cause the damage but come on, they're constantly repairing and repaving these damn roads. You'd think by now they'd come up with a better pavement, right? Methinks they have such a pavement but choose not to use it.

And I kid you not, we were but a mile across the border of Illinois and the big orange construction cones started! Yep, they're gearing up for another road construction season. Yippee!! Three years from now they'll be out there on that same stretch repaving it again.

I may be Goin' To Texas again soon. Chris Rea forgot to mention in his song that those roads that go forever were also pretty darn smooth.

Word.

R

FOR THOSE WHO LIKE TO ROCK!!!...

Greetings fellow headbangers!

It is with great delight that I now pimp my bro-in-law's band SPIRAL TRANCE's new cd release, "All In Due Time." Paul's band has been bangin' away for over a decade now and I can't begin to tell you have proud I am with, not only their tenacity, but how they've continued to improve and improve over the years and have become one of the most polished, tight rock bands around. They're so good that Summerfest, the "World's Biggest Music Festival" invites them back every year (for well over 5 years now) to be one of the featured acts on the famous Rock Stage! They've also been nominated and won numerous industry awards. If you dig good old ass-kickin' head-banging rock you will love their stuff.

And right now they've got a Pre-Order promotion running for the new release "All In Due Time" for only $9.99. And they're also offering 2 other packages that include signed posters and their rare 6 song EP. Here's the link which also has some samples of their music... www.ratpakrecordsamerica.com/spiraltrance

In other news...

I am just so tickled that the Yankees and one Mr CC Sabathia lost their first game today. And that Mr Sabathia in particular really STUNK IT UP after his $160,000,000.00 signing. Yep, in case you live on the moon and didn't know, I have the correct amount of zeroes there.

They Yankees continue to make me vomit with their unfair spending sprees and CC cashing in is understandable but, is it just me or doesn't it make everyone sick when these guys never just come out and admit when they're asked why they signed with the Yankees that it was because they dumped sick boatloads of cash in their money-grubbing laps! Come on! Everyone knows that's why you friggin' signed with them. Don't give us the old "It was the right fit for me" "I felt signing with them gave me the best chance to win a championship" blah blah blah...Ya know, just like the steroid cheaters, if they'd just come right out and tell the truth I'd respect them a lot more. Well, at least a little bit anyway. Well, at least for admitting to that one particular thing. I'd still despise them with every fiber of me being.

Okay, thassit for this week. 'S all I got.

Word.

R

CARDINALS WIN SUPERBOWL (that's right)!

Hey all,

Well, I was rooting for the Cardinals. If my team's not in it I usually pull for the underdogs. It's my way. I've got to say that the game ended up being very exciting after what looked like was sure to be another boring blowout. That 4th quarter was outstanding! Man, if not for that turnover going into the half I think the cards would have pulled off the shocker...and even so they still almost did. Gotta give 'em credit for coming back like they did. They could've easily folded going into that 4th quarter but they did not.

Just like me! Yes, there is a parallel, just gimme a second here folks. What I'm trying to say is that I'm not a quitter. That's right, ain't got no quit in me. I been knocked down, sure, but i get my skinny ass right back up. Sometimes it takes me awhile, y'know, like when I have my achilles removed to get at a bone spur or have my eye poked out and can't see straight for 8 months, but I'm going to come back, man. WHAT DOESN'T KILL YOU MAKES YOU STRONGER as the Native Americans would proudly exclaim.

I've been stabbed, shot, run over, poked, concussed (many times and in some very brutal ways), insulted, stolen from (lawsuits pending), and ignored. Still here. Still standing. Just gets me more pissed off...more determined. And I will get you if you're one of those who've stole from me or slighted me. Rest assured. I will.

So I identify with the underdog. With those who have been dissed. And, yes, I realize you're out there saying, "Hey, man, we've all been dissed at one time or another, man...get over it." Nope. Not my way. I use it. It is my fuel. I have been dissed. Many a time...I do not like it. I have a motto...a mantra...and here it is...it is my code..."I'M ALL ABOUT FAIR AND REVENGE." It works for me. I am as standup a person as there is. You do right by me and you'll get right right back atcha tenfold. You screw me over and watch out. I will get my revenge. It may take some time but I do not forget.

So to all you "Cardinals" out there (and I'm speaking metaphorically here. And yes, I realize that it's not a perfect metaphor cuz those dudes all make sick money and most of us don't but just let me friggin' finish here alright?), you've got a simple choice...You can let the "getting knocked down" get you down and give up or you can get back up pissed off and do something about it. You're a winner or you're a loser. It's simple. And just hoisting that trophy doesn't always make you the winner, folks. Sometimes it's how you handle the loss. Sometimes it's your response to that loss that proves you to be the biggest winner of them all!

So, yeah, right now I'm a "Cardinal," man. But don't feel sorry for me or my Cardinal brethren. We're gonna fight and you have not heard the last from us!

word!

r

p.s. See you at the New York Comic-Con this weekend! I'll be signing at the Top Shelf booth and Archie booth and strolling around.

p.p.s. THE 3 GEEKS: SLAB MADNESS #2 shipped out from my printer last week so it should be in the stores very soon!

THE GREEN BAY PACKERS 2008

Yup, a pretty craptastic season for The Pack. But for those out there blaming it on the Favre trade, forget it. Grow up. Aaron Rodgers was not the Pack's problem nor was the offense. The did enough to win at least 9-10 games all on their own. The blame goes directly on the defense this year and moreso even on the pitiful Special Teams!!! The Special Teams performance was consistently horrific this season...was it just me or did it seem like every time the offense had a terrific long drive for a score--a very IMPORTANT drive for a score--late in the game, the Special Teams kicked off and the opposing team was instantly at mid-field??? Then, BOOM! BOOM! BOOM! Three plays later they're in the end zone! How many games did we see this this year?!

And, once again, versus the hated Bears this past Monday night they did it again. Pack sustains a great drive to put them up in the score and the ST and defense give it right back on 3-4 plays. THEN, the offense gets us back within field goal range with just seconds left in the game and the ST eff it up by having the kick blocked.

'Course it goes into overtime but by then the outcome was a foregone conclusion wasn't it? Especially when the Bears won the coin toss and elected to receive. You just knew it was a matter of 3-4 plays again and game over.

And, yep, sure 'nuff, exactly what happened.

So to all you "See, they shouldn't have traded Favre!" guys out there, again, I say "grow up."

I also say you probably know nothing about football.

Thassit for this week. Had a decent enough holiday--Stella was in heaven.

New 3 Geeks comic hits the stands in January and has an all-new cover! Different than the exclusive and slightly different than what was shown in the Previews ad.

Bet you're just tingling with anticipation now ain'tcha?

word.

R

ALL ROOFERS SUCK TOTAL @$$!

As you may have surmised from the title of this particular blog, my dear friends, there is currently no love lost between me and anyone in the roofing profession. Nay. In fact,I think it's safe to say that I hate every last one of the mother******s.

As some of you may know we've had a nightmare of a summer dealing with our roof. To be specific the contractor, Skip's General Contracting, owner one Mr. Skip Kubiak, completely effed up our house in June when they tore off the old shingles on the day we had record rainfalls here in Wisconsin and then, to the utter disbelief of anyone containing more than one brain cell, neglected to tarp the roof as the pitch black rainclouds thundered in! Even though I myself, our tenant, our neighbor and good ole Skip all separately at different moments, told his knucklehead crew the major storm was coming and they should tarp it up and hightail it outta there!

They did not.

Yes, this is old news. You read about the massive damages to our home that totaled $22,000.00 dollars in damages and 8 weeks dealing with repair crews and the insurance agents. Yep, that's the old news.

So, here's the update and why my previous loathing of roofers has now turned to utter hatred.

Skip Kubiak's crew did eventually "finish" the roof )Note the quote marks around the word finish. This'll come into play again later). Yep, they shingled it all up and got the Hell out of our lives, right? Sure. And we paid them--had to to get the insurance money--and they slithered away.

Couple days later it rains again and we get dripping water on the third floor.

We call good ole Skip Kubiak again and tell him. He sends crew back to fix. Crew caulks around dormer on third story and says, "Ees all good, now, mang. We feex." And they slither off.

Couple days later it rains. Yep, you guessed it, we got dripping water on third floor where they just "feexed" the leak. I call good ole Skip Kubiak again. He says he'll send back the crew to feex. I say, "Um, at this point would it be okay for me to ask for a different crew? This crew hasn't exactly done what I'd call a bang-up job...y'know? And, if it's not too much to ask could you send a crew I can actually communicate with?" He says yes, he will now send a different crew.

New crew arrives a few days later. They speak english, which is good, and go up and fix my dormer. They explain how they found one gaping hole one guy could fit his whole hand in! They're aghast at how the prior crew could've missed this. I am too. Who wouldn't be, right? So, they fill it in and we're all good! Whew! "At last!" we say! A gaping hole up there. That must have been where the water was coming in. But now it's filled in and we can finally get some peace. And the crew that's doing the interior fixes is nearing the end so our nightmare will soon be all over. Oh thank God...Thank god.

Couple days later it rains again. Yep, you guessed it, we get dripping on the third floor. Yep, same exact spot.

At this point in time we've got painters now working on the exterior of our home. You see, the whole "getting the roof redone" and "painting up the exterior afterwards" were all part of our big masterplan to fix up the house so we could sell it!!!! Good plan, eh? Yeah, right!

So, anyway, the exterior painting crew is out there and they've got a guy up on the rooftop painting our dormers and I ask the chief if he can have the guy look at our dormers and see if he can find anywhere the rain might be coming in. He says, sure, and that the guy's his brother and that he's a ROOFER! He's just helping out with this paint job. SWEET! The guy's a roofer so he'll know what to look for, I think. He comes down a few minutes later and tells me there's a lot of bad things going on up there. He tells us, now get this!, that Skip Kubiak's crew NEVER FINISHED THE JOB!!! That's right. Never finished the job.

What do you mean? We ask. He informs us that the top of our roof which is flat and supposed to have been newly "rubberized" was, in fact, NOT. Apparently they did half of the flat portion and then, y'know, just kind of stopped. Yep, what the hell...why not? Already caused this poor family all kinds of hell so, heck, why would we do our best to salvage any kind off pride and/or respect in our work and/or ourselves and just finish the job we were paid to do? Yeah. So the guy says give him a camera and he'll take pictures for us. Yeah, we look at the pictures. Yeah, unfinished roof.

Now keep in mind this is 8 weeks since Skip Kubiak's (am I using his name enough so you'll all remember?) crew supposedly finished the roof. And also keep in mind this is the top of a 3 story roof. It's not like I could climb up there and check that they ever finished. I was also in a cast on my foot so I couldn't even if I had wanted to.

So, I call good ole Skip Kubiak again. He cuts me off before I can say anything saying that he's done and it's in the insurance company's hands and it's not his fault and so on and so on. He finally needs to take a breath and I inform him that his crew never finished the job. This stops him in his tracks. What do you mean, he asks. I tell him of this new information I have just found out about the rubberizing. He says, "So now you're telling me that they never finished rubberizing the roof?" I tell him that that is what I am telling him, yes. He tells me he'll be to our house Monday morning as he is currently out of state. This was a Thursday.

On Wednesday the following week he arrives. He calls me from outside and tells me he's checking to see what he'll need in materials to finish the job and finish it this week.

Days pass and no Skip.

I call him the following week.

Days pass, no Skip.

I call him again.

Days...You know the drill.

It has now been months and, yep, I've had enough. I call the local news channels--you know, they all have their investigative reporters who go after losers like Skip. Within minutes of calling "4OnYourSide", one of the local news stations, they call me back saying that Skip told them "Stop bothering me! I'm talking with my insurance company and we're going to get it fixed!" and then hangs up on them.

Later that day I get a call from one Levi Nolte of Lake Park Builders. He says that he's a friend of Skip's and that he'll be taking over the job for Skip. Okay, I say. Levi tells me that he'll be over the following day to assess and then that weekend, if it's alright with us, he'll finish the job. Is it alright with us? What the F**K?! I very politely and appreciatively thank him and tell him "Yes" please do it as soon as he can and whichever day he gets the chance. No need to call us the day before and ask. Just do it as soon as he gets a window in his schedule.

He tells me he'll do it on that Saturday, 7 am.

Saturday. No Levi Nolte. I call him. He tells me that Skip didn't pay him what he said he would yet so he's not coming. I choke back the anger and disgust and politely ask him how much we're talking about. He tells me it'll cost $400 for materials and another $300 for labor. THAT'S IT?!! now Skip's being a jerk for $700??? I plead with him to get over here as soon as he can and just do this. I tell him that I WILL PAY HIM IF SKIP DOES NOT. He tells me he'll try Skip again and get back to me asap.

Meanwhile, I call my dear old friend from high school, TJ Daley, who owns his own construction company and fill him in. He knows about our troubles we've been having but not the full extent. So i fill him in. I ask if he could do the job. He says, yes, in fact he has an opening in his schedule the upcoming week. I tell him that I will gladly pay him what it requires, I just want my roof fixed and by someone I trust. He comes over to assess the job and I tell him about this new guy, Levi Nolte. He tells me if that doesn't work out give him a call back and he'll do the job.

Alright, now we're finally feeling better about all of this. We have two guys lined up. Surely one or the other will come through. Sure it'll cost me another $700 but at this point we don't care. We just want our roof fixed.

So a couple days later Levi Nolte comes back with the materials. But it's too wet up top to finish. Yeah, it rained again. Yeah, more leaks! Yeah, that was plural...leaks. We got a new one in the meantime near another dormer. Yeah.

So, TJ calls and leaves a message. Asks me what's up? I'm expecting Levi that day so I don't call TJ right back. Levi never shows. Next day I call TJ and tell him, "F**K Levi, F**K Skip. I've got materials, I'll pay you to do the job. Come on over as soon as you can. Thanks, call me back."

No calls back. No Skip, no Levi, no TJ. But 4OnYourSide has been checking in with me. At least I got that going for me. I update them and they say they'll apply more pressure on Skip. Cool! At least they're bugging the shit out of the bastard. Small victories at this point but I'll take it dammit. And it felt good.

Meanwhile Levi writes me an email telling me how he regrets ever bumping into Skip and feeling sorry for him and how he's a total a-hole and he loathes Skip and Skip's now putting this all on him and wants to pay him with materials he doesn't even need instead of cash because Skip's now totally broke. BUT he's a man of his word and he's going to finish our roof because he told us he would!

I write him back agreeing that Skip is, in fact, an a-hole, yes, I completely agree. I also thank him for being a man of his word and reiterate that I will pay him the $300.00 for his labor.

He writes back apologizing for venting and says he'll be over this weekend.

Never shows. Meantime I put in another call to TJ. Never calls back.

I call the Better Business Bureau on Skip and file a complaint. Now they're after him. It pleases me. Little victories.

That weekend, Sunday, we're out running some errands. We get back around noon and there's a message from Levi. he said he could come over that day and finish the roof. He just called about an hour ago! I call him right back! he says he'll be over soon. YES!!! At last! I tell Sandy. Phone rings seconds later. I'm doing something and can't pick it up. I know...I just know...I listen to the voice mail. Levi. Can't make it. Guy who was supposed to help him made other plans. But he'll be over sometime that week as the weather's supposed to be nice all week. This is the end of October now. Time's running out weather-wise.

Week was nice. Very nice. Sunny and warm. Levi Nolte never shows. The following week I blast him in an email telling him that he's just like Skip. A liar and a thief and that because he's now strung me along for 5 WEEKS and the weather's turning I'm totally screwed. I ask him how guys like him can sleep at night. I then say that I'm sure that guys like him and Skip sleep just fine. Haven't heard back.

4OnYourSide called me last Thursday. They're going to ramp it up on good ole Skip Kubiak again.

Roof still leaks when it rains. Winter's coming. Looks like I'll have to start calling roofers in Spring.

Oh yeah, I forgot! I called on other guy, Gunther something, somewhere in the thick of the Levi/TJ time and he said he'd come over and take a look. He never showed. And I offered the painter who took pictures for me money to finish the job and he was very pleased by my offer and said he'd do it and he also never showed. I'm missing alot of the details but I think you all get the gist, right?

So, am I right? Is the title of this blog right? Do roofers all go to the same @$$hole school? And I won't even get into the way these guys look! I won't descend to their level. Oh hell, yes I will, they deserve it! Of the oh, say, 14-18 roofers we came across in these past 6 months I'd say they had 26 teeth total, all brown. Five knew what a haircut was. 3 ever met a stick of deodorant. 1 had a clean shirt.

ALL ROOFERS SUCK TOTAL @$$!

word.

r

OLYMPICS OVERVIEW

Hey all. As you may know I've been laid up with my foot in a cast for 2 weeks now...off the drugs (boo hoo) so the coherency is back and as a result...really bored. Been watching aloooooooooooot of television and thank Odin for the Olympics right now. Been watching about 6-8 hours a day of it and some days even more. What else am I gonna do? watch Jerry Springer (is he still on? Is he still alive?)!

So, The Olympics. Let's summarize so far...

Yeah, yeah, yeah, Michael Phelps kicked royal ass and I cheered along the whole way but he's gottewn enough love already so let's focus on some of the other Olympians shall we?

Best Olympian name of the games just simply flat-out has to go to relay swimmer Liam Tancock from Great Britain. Liam TANCOCK!!! That's just awesome. I know Phelps was in that last relay for his 8th gold but a small part of me (guess which one) was pulling for Mr. Tancock.

I just wonder if it's really tan.

Best "Birds" of the games has to go to Sue Bird and Jenny Finch. Tweet tweet in this case translates to Sha-wing Sha-wing! Even my wife, Sandy, noted that Jenny Finch looked like a model. She was, in fact, purring like a kitten as she said it. I got warm.

And is it just me or do our ladies just look that much better than all the other countries ladies or what?!!! In that Olympic category we sweep and would have a 26 way tie at the top! Where do you start? Cute gymnasts, foxy swimmers, the beach volleyball players make me feel evil and then they go and show the pole vaulters that look like cover models! I've been laid up for 2 weeks, folks...aha...NOT HELPING the situation at all.

Seriously, though. Our ladies are by far the best looking besides kicking serious butt (oh I wish it were mine) in their events. Our ladies are the best athletes in the world!

Okay, now onto Badminton. Why? Seriously, this is an Olympic event but they're getting rid of Softball and Baseball after this Olympics? That's disgusting.

Been some definite scoring favoritism in the Gymnastics, as per usual, with the Chinese being the beneficiaries of said favoritism. When us layman can spot it it's one thing...I don't know technical difficulty from difficulty taking a dump (which the pain pills caused btw) but I do know what looks good and I do know that when a gymnast lands ON HER FRIGGIN' KNEES on her landing from the vault she doesn't deserve a Bronze medal!!! And when the commentators continuously make a point of saying it's "hinky" then you know it's HINKY! That's what sucks about Gymnastics and Figure Skating...the judges. The CORRUPT judges. Always been a problem and, apparently, always will be. And yet they both dominate the coverage every single time the Olympics are televised. Sigh. Whattaya gonna do?

A'ight, that's it for now.

word.

r

FOOT SURGERY! ARGH!!!

Hey all,

Had my heel surgery on Friday to remove the very painful bone spur that was causing me severe pain for the past 8 months. Prior to that it was moments of excrutiation over the past 10 years so I think it was time for the surgery. So, did I mention that the spur was conveniently located behind the achilles tendon right on the tip of the back of the heel? And that because of this brilliant location the achilles had to be partially detached to get at the spur? And, oh yeah, did I also mention that I have these little lovelys in BOTH HEELS and that heel #2's surgery will be following soon?

Yes. The summer of Hell (I honestly just misspelled Hell as Heel...can you believe it?) continues for us here at casa Koslowski.

So, I'll be laid up for 4 weeks in a cast and then 2-4 more weeks of rehab and then onto heel #2. Weeeeeeeee!!!!!!

The discomfort is unbelievable, folks. Sleeping through the night is impossible. But the pain pills are pretty darn cool. I am not a recreational drug user, and never really have been as I am all about control, but the past 2 days--and in times past for other surgeries--I must say that the pills have brought me a certain degree of, oh, shall we say...BLISS. I dig the lucid dreaming...that in-between awake and asleep place where you know you're hallucinating/dreaming and yet you can still follow the game that's playing on the tv. A fairly cool thing. So there's that. The bright side, right?

And I hope to finish my latest, and long overdue, 3 Geeks comic while I'm laid up. It's set to be an exclusive release for this year's Baltimore Comic-Con so I'm very excited about it. In this issue I'll be taking on the always controversial debate about "slabbing" comics and the CGC company. So make sure you keep your eyes peeled for that issue. Go to Baltimore and get your copy there!

In other news...

The Brett Favre thing. Yep. I guess it's finally over. The long, painful, irritating, shameful ordeal has finally come to a rather surreal and sad ending for us Packer fans. A Jet?! REALLY?! This is ridiculous.

Brett Favre is going to end his career as a Jet.

That's just wrong.

But whattaya gonna do. Time to move on. I'm not going to drudge it all up anymore because, frankly, I'm exhausted from it all and am just ready to move on and forward with Aaron Rodgers and plan on cheering the hell out of the guy, good or bad. It's all I can do.

A'ight, foot's starting to throb so I gotta go elevate. (and pop a couple little pillies...yaaaayyyy).

word.

r

SICK AS HELL!

Hey all. Sorry but this one's gonna be short and boring as hell. I am sick. Sandy is sick. And poor little Stella is really sick! In fact we had to rush her to the emergency room last night at 11:30 PM and were there until 1:45 AM. What we thought was just a common cold with a slight fever (we had her home all week from school) evolved into a frightening episode last night of her shaking/shivering uncontrollably and screaming in pain at some cramps in her legs. So we rushed to the hospital where we waited, and waited, and waited....meanwhile I walk her around comforting her as she falls asleep on my shoulder from exhaustion. She then wakes up 10 minutes later and pukes all over me. Now we're really freaked out and, needless to say, pretty grossed out as well.

Well, turns out her cold evolved into a pretty serious ear infection that just turned her whole system topsy-turvy. We had actually suspected an ear infection the day before because she said her ear ached whenever she sneezed or burped but then it seemed to go away. The fever would go away as well. So we didn't pull the trigger on taking her to her doctor on Tuesday like we had planned on Monday.

Lesson learned.

If you suspect an ear infection with your kid take them right away, man. It's pretty prevalent with little kids when they get bad colds because their ear canals are narrower than an adults--they get clogged by the mucus in the nasal passage and then the goop gets stuck there and voila! ear infection!

So, not alot of sleep here lately with that and us being sick as well. Hence, this boring blog. Please forgive me.

Word.

R

P.S. Our softball team did have it's debut yesterday before the mayhem late last night and we pulled off an exciting 14-12 win. Just thought you'd all like to know that.

P.P.S. My heel is still friggin' killing me...did you know I have horrible bone spurs? Yep, fun stuff. Surgery this Fall.

I'M SELLIN' EVERYTHING!!!

That's right, folks, it's all gotta go! I'm purging, wheeling and dealing on everything here at casa Koslowski. The house has become overrun with stuff...lotsa stuff!! First and foremost my beloved comic book collection. Yep, that's right. I know, I know...anybody out there who also collects is right now reading this as the hairs on the back of their neck stand at attention and the pit of their stomach sinks a couple inches...some of you may have even thrown up in your mouth a little. "H-HOW CAN YOU SELL YOUR C-C-COMICS?!!" But it's true. I'm 40, we're making some changes, and I could use some space and a few bucks. Plus, I look at all these comics and ask myself, "Am I ever going to read them, again?" If the answer is "No" then they must go. I'll be saving some, of course. The chances of my ever obtaining an Avengers #4 signed by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby are pretty limited so, yeah, that one stays (unless someone makes me a seriously SERIOUS offer!). And there are quite a few of my Golden and Silver Age comics I'll hold onto, but 90% of the collection is going to be sold!

SO! If you are interested check out eBay where I've started listing them. And there is some good shit going up my friends...good shit! The "shit" shit I'll try and sell at the local shows and flea markets, don't worry.

So go check it out...right now! My eBay seller name is Poo666 and, yes, it's a stupid name...I know. It was inadvertent when I registered. I thought that was going to be my password and it was a stupid, juvenile password I'd easily remember so that's why I picked it. Hey, I wasn't very savvy on the computer stuff when I joined eBay so I hadn't a clue...and I was too scared to try and change it so I left it. And now that I know how to change it I don't want to cuz I've got a solid track record as Poo666, alright?! So I'm stuck being Poo666...the "shitty devil" if you will.

sigh...

And, yep, not just selling the comics. Furniture, books, cds, toys, everything! We're purging it all. Then it's the house! More on that later...when we're ready.

So feel free to send your money. Check out my eBay goodies and go friggin' nuts.

That's it for this week...ain't got much else.

Word.

r

HORTON HEARS A...BLEW!

Hey all! I am here today to do you all a public service and hopefully help save you the $50 I spent a few days back taking my daughter and a friend to see HORTON HEARS A WHO!

I really can't understand the reviewers sometimes...I take the time to research kids films because all-to-often they blow chunks. So, when HORTON was announced I, naturally, became pretty optimistic what with Steve Carrell and Jim Carrey and Carol Burnett signed on as voice actors. And I love Dr. Suess! But, as I've learned to do from past burns, I still waited until the reviews came in. I trust my weekly subscription to ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY for these reviews --NOT, however, the staff reviewers who are most definitely hit-or-miss at best! No, I wait until the following week's issue where we get all the reviewers grades and a pretty good overall idea/average grade. I've also come to realize that Rene Rodriguez is almost always sypmatico with my tastes in movies. I must now point out that hers was only one of a few missing on Horton in this last issue of EW so she isn't party to the horrible mistake the other reviewers caused me to make. And there are a few numbskulls who I can always dismiss right off--Stephanie Zacharek (this broad hates everything!), Mick LaSalle (terrible taste), Carrie Rickey and Todd McCarthy (unreliably uneven) and EW who seem to pander sometimes and the EW Readers who seem to give EVERYTHING a "B" or higher (and all Adam Sandler movies a resounding "A"! Ugh!)!

Anyway, the grades all came in at "B"s and higher! So, naturally. I assumed that even with the few numbskulls an all "B" grid with a few "A"s peppered in (and the aforementioned voice talent) surely meant this movie would be pretty darn good.

Not.

I know a movie, especially a kid's movie, really stinks it up when I feel my daughter's head rest against my shoulder a quarter of the way through--it's especially bad when the "shoulder lean" occurs 15-20 times during the film! That coupled with the silent full theatre is also a pretty good barometer that this baby blows! I counted 2 medium sized chuckles and one half chuckle throughout the entire film. And it was long, folks (at least it seemed that way, I dunno, really).

It was dull. It was boring. It was really kind of disturbing...and NOT in a good way. Trust me, I like "disturbing", yes, even in a kid's movie, if it's handled well and serves a purpose and is PLAUSIBLE! Carol Burnett's part of the crazed and paranoid Kangaroo just didn't play. Completely over-the-top and completely implausible. There wasn't enough groundwork layed for her reactions (over-reactions) to Horton's "hearing the Whos" and the jungle folk all falling in line behind her and allowing her to work them into a froth-mouthed frenzy. It just didn't fly and it came across as disturbing (not in a good way) and forced. As if the writers were trying way too hard to teach the kid's a proper lesson about crazed, maniacal, paranoid people. Which we all know is a huge problem in your typical 6-year-old's world, right?

They missed the mark again on a classic Seuss tale. I believe that's three in a row they've screwed up now isn't it?

But, getting back to where I was originally heading with all of this...The writers, directors, studio blew it, yes, but how about these useless reviewers? That's what really ticks me off. The average grade on this stinker was a solid "B" in EW! A "B"!

A "B" is pretty good if I recall (didn't get too many in school but I remember them being something that was good). Just one away from the coveted "A" and definitely better than the average "C". "B"s are a good thing...a sure bet...a job well done. It seems to me that the reviewers watch (I assume they actually see these films) any kid's film and if the animation looks good (Horton's was great BTW, I'll give it that) and the story is harmless it's an automatic "B" or better. Go back! Look! Look at all the sub-par kid's flicks that have come out in recent years and you'll see that I am right--MADAGASCAR, ICE AGE 2, MEET THE ROBINSONS, HAPPY FEET, ROBOTS, CHICKEN LITTLE, VALIANT and on and on and on--they all got these "B" grades and they were all benign (but very well animated!) pieces of garbage. Boring at best.

I'll never forget my daughter's review of Madagascar after we saw it and I asked her how she liked it--exact words, "It wasn't good but it wasn't bad, dad...it was just adequate."

SHE WAS 5!!! And she was exactly right (Actually she was generous on that one but she was, indeed, only 5 so I'll cut her a little slack).

Point being is that these reviewers seem to stamp any kid's movie a "B" or better. ***NOTE*** They actually did get DOOGAL right a few years back, I'll give them that, but, sadly, that was one I didn't wait for the reviews for...that one was all on me (see, I take responsibility for my own failures, too).

Anyway, the "stamping all kid's movies with "B"s rant" I was just on...Where does that put really great kid's movies like LION KING, THE INCREDIBLES, TOY STORY, TOY STORY II, ENCHANTED, MONSTER'S INC...? There are many more but you get my point. Sure, they gave these movies all "A"s and deservedly so, but if they are "A"s then surely a turd like HORTON, comparatively speaking, deserves no better than a "D", which is what I'd give it. By giving these crummy films all "B"s it diminishes the "A"s that the truly good movies receive. It does.

Get on the ball reviewers or get a clue. And if you can't do either than spare us your reviews all-together. You just cost me $50 bucks I'd've much rather spent taking them to the Discovery World museum or the zoo.

WORD!

R

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