The Angry Dog – Dallas

My 20th anniversary shirt

 WOEFULTOURIST has spent the better part of his life at bars in just about every  possible circumstance. He has spent countless hours belly up at one, passed out under the pool table at one, or projectile vomiting in the men’s room of one.  So when it comes to bars, he considers himself to have had a well rounded education.

Similarly, when it comes to beer, he prides himself on being pretty well versed on the art of brewing and consuming said alcoholic beverage.

Even though he can’t spell or pronounce the name of the German beer purity law, he can certainly appreciate what it has done for the history and quality of that wonderful beverage.

Unfortunately, there are still beer anarchists who insist on despoiling beer with all manner of additives.

WOEFULTOURIST will have none of it.

So you can take your cranberry, wheat, cinnamon, clove, apple, honey slop and use it to baste a half baked chicken, just don’t put it into the beer.

Enough said.

While WOEFULTOURIST has had a wide variety of beer/bar experiences, even a common sewer like himself, on rare occasions comes face to face with something he has never seen before.

Which brings us to The Angry Dog, a fine drinking establishment located in the Deep Ellum section of Dallas.   The bar also has a kick ass kitchen that year in and year out is voted as serving up some of Dallas’ best bar food.  Nevertheless, WOEFULTOURIST was there primarily for the beer, using the good food as a sponge to allow him to absorb and therefore consume even more beer than normal..

Nothing seemed extra special that Friday night as he sat himself down at the bar with his good friend and part owner of the place, John Little.

After consuming several Fat Tires, checking out ESPN for the latest sports scores, and having an intense discussion on whether or not one could separate Michael Jackson – the great Motown artist, from Michael Jackson – the freak show, WOEFULTOURIST noticed the bartender putting a plastic cup on the Fat Tire tap.  The universal sign for “empty keg”.

“I guess I won’t be having another Fat Tire.”

“Not for at least another half hour.” was John’s response.

Wondering why it would take a half an hour to change kegs in the walk in cooler, WOEFULTOURIST nevertheless kept the question to himself as he finished his draft and opted for a Shiner Bock as his next beverage.

More sports viewing followed, as well as a heated discussion as to whether or not Frampton Comes Alive was the best live concert album ever.  Then just as the banter was reaching a frenzied point, the front door opened and a man walked in wheeling a keg of beer on a hand truck.

Confused, WOEFULTOURIST looked to John for an explanation.

“Oh, that’s our keg guy.”

“You have your own keg guy?”

“Actually, we share him with all of Dallas.  When a keg runs dry we call our keg guy and a half hour later, we get a delivery.”

“On a Friday night?!”

“Any day of the week.”

“But that’s brilliant!”

“It works for me.”

WOEFULTOURIST always acknowledges brilliance, and this time was no different.

A beer keg delivery service that brings you kegs of beer only when you need them, eliminating the need for walk in coolers to store your kegs as well as the miles of tubing needed to carry the cold beer to the taps?!  Brilliant!

So he raised his glass in recognition of the concept and the bartender, being a trained professional, immediately poured him a brand new Fat Tire.

WOEFULTOURIST had just experienced a totally novel beer/bar experience – in Dallas, Texas of all places.

Who’d have guessed that a state that doesn’t allow bars to give their best customers an occasional free drink, and still has towns and counties that are dry –( honestly, there are places in Texas where seven days a week, no alcohol can be bought or sold – perish the thought) would nevertheless come up with the brilliant notion of the “Keg Guy”.

WOEFULTOURIST, in acknowledgment, would like to tip his hat and raise his glass to The Angry Dog, as well as the great state of Texas.

And, yes Mr. Bartender, he’d like another Fat Tire, if you please!

(Congratulations to The Angry Dog, winner of the Dallas Morning News 2012 Best Burger in Dallas Award.)

 

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Wacky Travel News

Fake Sputnik Capsule – Berlin

Wacky Travel News that’s out of this world – (as is the totally inappropriate commentary that follows.

August 15, 2017 Edition

Swedish train to be named Trainy McTrainface in tribute to Boaty                            Reporting by Johan Ahlander / Reuters •July 20, 2017

STOCKHOLM (Reuters) – A Swedish rail operator has vowed to name one of its trains “Trainy McTrainface” after a public vote, saying it would bring joy to people disappointede when Britain rejected the name Boaty McBoatface for a polar research ship following a similar poll.
Trainy McTrainface won 49 percent of the votes in the naming competition, conducted online by train operator MTR Express and Swedish newspaper Metro, beating choices such as Hakan, Miriam and Poseidon.
“(This is) news that will be received with joy by many, not just in Sweden,” MTR wrote in a statement.
The train will run between the Swedish capital Stockholm and Gothenburg, the country’s second-biggest city.
Last year, the British government said a new 200 million pound ($259 million) polar research ship would be named after veteran BBC naturalist David Attenborough even though the name “Boaty McBoatface” had topped an online poll.
The instigator of the Boaty name later apologized for his suggestion, which won more than 124,000 votes.
As a consolatory gesture, the research ship’s remotely operated undersea vehicle, designed to collect samples from the deep waters of the Arctic and Antarctic, will be named Boaty McBoatface, the government said.
MTR said another train had been voted to be named “Glenn”, an apparent tribute to an IFK Gothenburg soccer team of the 1980s that featured four players of that name — uncommon in Sweden — including Glenn Hysen, who later captained Liverpool.

WOEFULTOURIST says, “Engineer McEngineerface said he was proud to be the head man on the new train.”

 

Is that really a beached whale beneath Paris’ Notre Dame                        Associated Press •July 21, 2017

PARIS (AP) — A sperm whale appears to have beached on an embankment in the shadow of Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris.
Or maybe not.
A Belgian artists’ collective installed a very real-looking, life-size whale sculpture Friday alongside the Seine River, eliciting surprise and concern from tourists and Parisians alike.
Bart Van Peel, a member of the collective, said the installation is about raising environmental awareness and awakening “the child in everyone who still is puzzled about what is real and what is not.”
Kim Landman from New York was among those taken aback, especially after Van Peel spun a tale describing how the whale got stuck under a city bridge.
Parisian Charles Jean was immediately skeptical, asking whether the whale had climbed onto the quay with a ladder.

WOEFULTOURIST says, “Is that a beached whale, or are you just happy to see me?”

 

Marijuana business offers weed for weeds on cleanup day                                          Associated Press •July 24, 2017

GARDINER, Maine (AP) — A medical marijuana businessman in Maine is offering weed for weeds in a program to encourage Gardiner residents to clean up their city.
WCSH-TV reports (http://on.wcsh6.com/2eEAtNL ) that Dennis Meehan, owner of Summit Medical Marijuana, offered residents who collected trash Saturday free marijuana. The businessman says anyone who was over 21 was offered free marijuana if they presented a bag of trash that was collected in town.
Meehan’s company advertised the cleanup effort on Facebook, and he says he hopes to expand what he calls “the day of service” program to the entire state. Mehan says the program is about bringing awareness to the “life-changing” nature of cannabis as well.
Gifting marijuana is legal in Maine.
Meehan says he got the idea for the swap from a Colorado town’s similar program.

WOEFULTOURIST says, “It’s not the thought that counts, it’s the doobie.”

 

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Chinese Buffet Restaurant

That’s right, some Chinese Buffet Restaurants even serve breakfast.

 

Sometimes WOEFULTOURIST wants it all.

Of course he can’t afford it.

Nor is there even a sliver of empty space in his completely full garage to store it in.

Still, while he is really no more than a bull in a china shoppe, sometimes he wishes that he were just a kid in a candy store.

Able to satiate his ever present sweet tooth with any and every wonderful candy concoction that his tummy desires.

Then to follow it up with sweets that he likes, but does not lust for.

Then to follow it up with treats that he kind of likes, but does not crave.

Until he is so full of sweets that his even his sweet tooth flees in revolt.

Because sometimes a little isn’t enough.

He wants it all.

Which is probably why WOULTOURIST spends many weekends planning on what he’d do if he won fifty million dollars in the lottery.

This in spite of the fact that he doesn’t actually play the lottery.

Then he realizes the foolishness of such an activity – fifty million isn’t nearly enough to get it all.

So he switches gears and plans on what he’d do if he won one hundred million in the lottery.

Only to remember how silly that is – because after taxes his winnings would only be fifty million, which he already decided wasn’t nearly enough.

So he switches gears, again, and plans on what he’d do if he won three hundred million dollars in the lottery.

Then the alarm goes off and he gets himself ready for work.

But it doesn’t deter WOEFULTOURIST from desiring it all.

So when that need hits him like a fat lady singing that it’s over, there is only one way to satisfy it.

He goes to the nearest Chinese Buffet Restaurant.

For those few who may be unfamiliar with such a treat, the Chinese Buffet Restaurant does not only serve one from column A and one from column B.

Heck, most of what they serve hasn’t set foot in mainland China since the last emperor – the real live person, not the movie.

Instead, it has a little bit of everything.

And WOEFULTOURIST can have it all.

From squid to salad.

From fried chicken to stuffed clams.

From fruit, to beef on a stick, to wonderful fried dumplings that don’t even need soy sauce to make them taste delicious.

But since he needs to have it all, the soy sauce is a necessity for him.

Such is the draw of the Chinese Buffet Restaurant.

Because not only is the belly of WOEFULTOURIST satisfied after a visit there,  so is the miser in him.

After all, where else can you have it all for under twenty dollars (that’s including the tip).

One of the seven wonders of the world, to be sure.

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Moochers, Beggars and Thieves

Pedro says, “Watch out for moochers, beggars and thieves.”

 

WOEFULTOURIST cannot say with enough conviction how much he enjoys meeting yet another person, group, or entity that wants to separate him from his hard earned cash.

It brings tears to his eyes to simply consider how hard they work to try and fleece him – imagining how much they might actually accomplish to make their worlds a better place if they used half as much incentive and effort to get a real job.

Cable companies would die to get a handful of them to work in their sales department.

But no, moochers, beggars and thieves rarely hold down full time jobs since that would cut into their mooching, begging and thievery time.

So they don’t.

Now WOEFULTOURIST understands that the phrase moochers, beggars and thieves may bee  confusing for some of his fans.,

So he will attempt to confuse them even further by trying to explain the differences between the three of them.

To make the process even more unwieldy, he will work backwards.

Starting with thieves.

For those new to the concept of definitions, a thief is someone who tries to take something of yours without your approval.

This should not be confused with the cute teenager who stole your heart in high school and hid it away for decades.

That person is not a thief.

They are a heartbreaker.

Not a home wrecker – that would be a slutty individual, though not a criminal.

Not a safe cracker – that would be an out and out criminal.

No, a thief steals your money, not usually your inner organs.

Then there are the beggars.

Beggars differ from thieves in that they want your money, but ask you for it.

Sometimes politiely.

Sometimes via misspelled messages on cardboard.  

“Peas help me.”

Clearly legumes are very powerful.

Sometimes appealing to your heartstrings (assuming they weren’t stoled by a non-thief heartbreaker way back when).

“Homeless vet looking for a new clinic.”

Sometimes including small children, or dogs to help seal the deal.

“Need food for the kid so he can get a job to pay for my addictions.”

Finally, there are the moochers.

Moochers differ from the rest in that they don’t ask for your money.

Rather, they want your non-cash stuff.

Sometimes for their own use.

“Remember that lawnmower I borrowed from you last year?  Yeah, well it broke and I need to borrow another one.”

Sometimes, just so that they don’t have to get it themselves.

“My wife threw me out. Mind if I stay with you and eat your food, drink your beer and fail to compensate you for any of it?”

For the most part, WOEFULTOURIST has only dealt with moochers that are either relatives, or neighbors.

So it was with wide eyed wonder that he discovered a completely different  type of moocher in his travels.

The non friend, non neighbor moocher.

A very rare breed.

Just after visiting his friend Pedro, South of the Border, WOEFULTOURIST got back on I-95 and resumed his journey southward towards Florida.

That was when he realized that he needed gas (no not that kind, Pedro saw to that).

So he pulled off the first exit he came to and into the first gas station he found in the lovely town of Dillon.

He had barely gotten out of his car and started to gas up, when a grizzled young man approached him.

Expecting the least, he was prepared for nothing that might actually happen.

The yourng man, somewhat sheepishly, possibly embarassed but probably not, finally got the courage to ask the question that was most likely burning a hole in his pocket.

“Sorry to bother you, but do you think you can lend me some gas for my truck?”

Which was followed by the all important sweeping gesture to the beat up pickup truck parked nearby.

Now WOEFULTOURIST comes from a long line of moochers, so he thought he had heard it all.

But that was before.

This was now.

And now, WOEFULTOURIST just wanted to get to Orlando and drop a ton of money on the attractions and not try and actually figure out the particulars of this particular mooch, intrigued though he was.

So he turned the moocher down before he could embarrass himself any further, even after the moocher politely offered to explain the exact reason he needed to mooch some gasoline from WOEFULTOURIST in the first place..

Instead, WOEFULTOURIST drove away and made his Mary way down to Florida.

Wondering all the way, whether mooching gasoline at a gas station from tourists was just a “southern” thing, or the latest techno trend to hit these shores in decades.

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Wacky Travel News

Fake Sputnik Capsule – Berlin

Wacky Travel News that’s out of this world – (as is the totally inappropriate commentary that follows.

August 10, 2017 Edition

Drowned security robot wasn’t a victim of foul play                                                          Jon Fingas,Engadget Sat, Jul 22 2017
By now you’ve probably heard of that security robot that fell into a fountain in Washington, DC– it’s practically the stuff of legend as far as the internet is concerned. But what really happened on that tragic day? We’re starting to get a clearer picture. Bisnow has learned that the robot, a Knightscope K5 nicknamed Steve, was neither the victim of a pushy human nor showing signs of trouble before it took its fateful plunge. It was supposed to follow a prescribed route that kept it out of harm’s way, so the robot had to have made a decision to veer off the beaten path. Management and security staff had trained with the robot days before, too. But what was the cause?
That’s still unknown, although it’s safe to say Steve wasn’t bemoaning the state of politics or suffering from existential dread. It’s possible that a software glitch led to the deadly change in course, or that weather threw it off.
The dive isn’t deterring anyone involved. The property is using a replacement robot at the moment, and Steve is expected to make a recovery once he gets repairs. He may have “died,” but he’s not gone forever. MRP Realty, which deployed Steve, clearly isn’t deterred — it wants to implement more of Knightscope’s robots at other properties within 3 to 6 months. However, it’s safe to say that both MRP and Knightscope will be combing over the data from this incident to reduce the chances of another tumble.
WOEFULTOURIST says, “Russian robot geeks gave Steve a 6.5 on the technical merits of his dive and a 1.0 for style points.”

 

Western tourists visiting Thailand are being asked to show £460 in CASH to prove they aren’t ‘begpackers’, with one even ‘detained in a squalid cell’           By James Draper For Mailonline /  20 July 2017 
Thai authorities are demanding tourists show them proof that they have enough money before letting them enter the country, according to reports.
While Thailand has long required tourists to arrive with a minimum of 10,000 Baht (£230) per person and 20,000 (£460) Baht per family, it was a rule rarely enforced until now.
Travellers have been taking to online forums saying that airport officials are demanding to see the sums in cash, with one German traveller claiming he was detained in a cockroach-ridden cell for not carrying any, and denied access to an ATM. 
Thai authorities are demanding tourists show them proof that they have enough money before letting them enter the country, according to reports (stock image) +3Thai authorities are demanding tourists show them proof that they have enough money before letting them enter the country, according to reports (stock image)
According to ThaiVisa, the move forms part of a crackdown on the rise of western visitors begging for money or working illegally there.
The trend, casually referred to as ‘begpacking’, sees mainly European and Australian visitors plead or perform for cash on the streets.
Numerous videos recently-uploaded to social media depict young travellers trying to generate money with such tactics. 
According to ThaiVisa’s forum, one British national – who had three previous tourist visa entries in his passport – was asked to show the sum after landing at Bangkok’s Don Mueang airport. 
Travellers have been taking to online forums saying that airport officials are demanding to see the sums in cash
One German tourist claims on ThaiVisa that he was detained in a squalid immigration centre at the city’s Suvarnabhumi Airport for not having enough cash on him
Fortunately, he was carrying the cash amount and was granted access. 
But not everybody has been so fortunate. 
One German tourist claims he was detained in a squalid immigration centre at the city’s Suvarnabhumi Airport, which processes more than 45 million people each year.
Writing on the forum, he says he was detained despite offering to show his bank statements.
While Thailand has long required tourists to arrive with a minimum of 10,000 Baht (£230) per person and 20,000 (£460) Baht per family, it was a rule rarely enforced until now
‘I was asked to show 20k THB and I only had 8k on me, but I told them I could show them my banking account or go to any ATM and withdraw the money,’ he said. 
‘The guy was power-tripping for whatever reason and didn’t let me. Said he doesn’t trust me and that I’ll go home. I’m in the detention cell right now. Already been here for a good eight hours and it sucks. 
‘Cockroaches everywhere, no blankets, no pillows. It’s a good time.’ 
The scrutiny even stretches as far as Padang Besar in Malaysia, which borders Thailand to the south.
A record-breaking 32 million foreign visitors travelled into Thailand in 2016, with even more expected this year. 
WOEFULTOURIST says, “Hey Dude, let’s go to Thailand and beg on the streets.  And next year, let’s do something different and go to Amsterdam and beg on the streets.”

 

Herd of scared buffalo make break for it, roam through town                                     Associated Press•July 18, 2017
GILFORD, N.H. (AP) — These buffalo have been roaming through a New Hampshire town.
Police in Gilford spent Tuesday afternoon corralling a herd of buffalo that got loose from a local farm. They say on Facebook the buffalo are “scared and running.” They ask drivers not to approach the buffalo or blow their car horns.
The Bolduc Farm tells WMUR-TV nine of the buffalo have made it back. Police are still looking for a mother and two yearlings.
Robert Bolduc says the buffalo may have been startled by some construction work and found a weak spot in a fence.
WOEFULTOURIST says, “The buffalo “herd” that Gilford was where the deer and antelope play.”

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