M. Giant's
Throwing stuff at the internet to see what sticks

Monday, March 22, 2004  

Happy Birthday, Velcrometer!

I believe it’s somewhat traditional to mention the second anniversary of one’s website when it rolls around. Last Friday, here’s what I did instead:


Got in the car and pointed it toward Lake Geneva. This is not unusual, as I do this every time I drive to the airport, but in this case I kept right on going.

In LaCrosse, where we stopped for an early lunch, there is a Burger King right next to a McDonald’s. We vacillated a bit and found ourselves in the BK parking lot before we realized what we really wanted was McDonald’s. Was ready to turn around when I saw a sign on the fence behind the Burger King: “This way to McDonald’s entrance.” Followed the sign. Found ourselves in a dead-end alley behind the strip mall.

“Well, that’s kind of diabolically clever,” Trash observed. “And possibly illegal.” We ate McDonald’s.


Arrived in Lake Geneva before the rest of the group. In this case, the group is a couple of Trash’s friends from grad school: Chao (no relation to other Chaos you may have read about ) and Corpkitten. You may remember them from last summer’s New York Stories, Parts One through Five. They’re coming from the Quad Cities and from Kalamazoo, so Lake Geneva is a point roughly equidistant from our various points of origin. On this particular occasion, they’re also bringing their significant others, Disqueen and the Latvian, respectively. Which is why I get to come.

We’re renting a sprawling, three-bedroom house. We’re the first ones there, and the owner meets us, lets us in and shows us around. They’ve done all this renovation work themselves. Ah, I think, immediately upon stepping inside. Someone’s favorite Trading Spaces designer is Vern.

CorpKitten and her husband the Latvian arrived shortly thereafter. Of the home’s many salutary features, his favorite is the hatch in the floor of the back mud room that leads into the creepy basement. We explored it in the late-afternoon daylight, because later would be bad. A) It will be dark, and B) we will have just seen Dawn of the Dead. The basement hatch is Evil Dead 2 enough as it is, thanks.


Went to a bar/restaurant for dinner. Trash got up and asked if the bathrooms were scary.

“There are ice cubes,” I said. “Always a sign of class.”

She looked at me quizzically.

“Don’t you ever have ice cubes in the toilet?” I asked, being deliberately stupid.

Corpkitten was now even more confused. “Ice cubes? For the dog?”

When the rest of us are again able to speak, we clarify that I was talking about ice cubes in the urinal of the men’s room. But we can all see the value of putting ice cubes in the toilet to make drinking that much more pleasant for one’s dog. After all, who wants to go to the trouble of cluttering up one’s floor with a water bowl when one can simply brighten Rex’s day by tipping the ice cube trays into the shitter? That’s the sign of a true dog-lover, right there.

There are running gags in every group weekend. “For the dog?” is this one’s.


Went to see Dawn of the Dead with Chao and the Latvian. The ladies stayed at the house. I thought Disqueen might be up for it, given that no movie could be scarier than living with Chao, but she passed. We gentlemen enjoyed it thoroughly.

A couple of guys were sitting right in front of us. One of them moved away from his buddy one seat for a better sightline. A few minutes later, two other guys came in together, split off halfway down the aisle, and sat down in separate sections. Chao commented, “Wow, those guys are so not gay they aren’t even sitting together.” The guy right in front of us turned around and looked at Chao. “Oh, not you,” Chao said. We thought there was going to be a fight, but they laughed about it and then later we all took a shower together.

Early on in the movie, it becomes apparent that it’s set in the greater Milwaukee area. Realized that, loosely speaking, I was in the greater Milwaukee area. Wondered if I should always go see scary movies in the geographical location where they take place.

Then went back to the (creepy, isolated cabin) house in the heart of downtown Lake Geneva, hung out for a while, and went to sleep, where I dreamed an entire other version of the movie, this one set in Uptown Minneapolis. Woo hoo! Twice the upper-Midwestern bang for my zombie buck!

Particularly the moment where I was dreaming about fleeing a mob of sprinting zombies while Trash, crawling over me to get to the bathroom, lost her balance and ended up with her hands clasped firmly around my ankles. I had what might euphemistically be called a “primal moment.”

Fortunately, there was a washer and dryer in the house. Unfortunately, I’d unplugged them and slid them across the mud room floor to hold down the basement hatch after we got back from the movie. Everything’s a tradeoff. Especially where zombies are concerned.

Today’s best search phrase: “Instructions for house sitter.” Good idea, but I don’t think mine will work for your house, unless you have a diabetic cat and a toilet that needs an occasional MacGyvering. You may just have to buckle down and write your own.

posted by M. Giant 7:23 PM 0 comments


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