Wednesday, January 28, 2009

#129 - What's Up Doc?

Discovered during a recent bout of a fever. Funny. Is it any wonder LaFevre’s ears are burning. Now pay attention. LaFevre works through colds. But the fever totally incapacitates.

During the latest bout, Dr. LaFevre made a discovery. Nothing major. But in the interest of saving time, especially when you’re in the midst of a fever, and out of bed, freezing, shivering, and there’s nobody there to bring it you, minutes count. He laughs now as you might as well, and is to be expected. But when you’re down with bug, and left alone to fend for yourself, remember this: the sooner you take care of business, the sooner you’re back in bed under the covers, nice and warm.

The cure: Alka-Seltzer. Not just any Alka-Seltzer. The cold remedy Alka-Seltzer. Even more so, it isn’t just the cold remedy Alka-Seltzer. It’s how you prepare it. Huh? Doc is now a chef? C’est la vie.

LaFevre used to drop the tabs into a glass of cold water. Refreshing to a heated body that is shivering on the outside. Knowing it takes 3-5 minutes for the tabs to dissolve, he would drop the tabs, and hit the can. And still have to wait. Even recently, the cold water was difficult to drink due to dental issues. So LaFevre tried room-temperature water. By the time he was done in the can, the tabs were dissolved. And not just finishing. We’re talking done.

So there you have it. If you like your Alka-Seltzer in cold water because it’s refreshing, go for it. But if you find yourself standing there, watching the tabs disintegrate in slow motion, switch to room-temperature. Dr. LaFevre doesn’t know why, but it’s clear from the empirical evidence exhibited here, the tabs melt twice, maybe three times as fast in room-temperature water than it does in cold water. For godsakes Jim, I’m a doctor, not a restaurant chef.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

#128 - And The Winner Is...

Ever notice how you never realize something because it’s TOO obvious? Case in point: LaFevre first heard Hendrix’ “Third Stone From The Sun” back in the late 70’s. Long after it was released. Then, a decade later, LaFevre watched John Lithgow in “Third Rock From The Sun”. Aliens living on Earth. Third rock. Whoa. That’s right, Earth. Third from the Sun. Wait a minute. “Third Stone From The Sun”. Jimi was referring to planet Earth. DUH.

Which leads LaFevre to his thought for today. 25 years later. LaFevre has been pushing the envelope his whole life. It’s the rebel in him. All other part-time careers aside, is it any wonder that his main line of work on a daily basis has always been mailroom management? Double DUH…

#127 - Butting Heads

Catchy, ain’t it? But appropriate, as always. LaFevre brings you another addition to the LaFevre Dictionary of Contemporary Terms. This time? A synonym to an already existing term. The ever popular “headbutt”. LaFevre finds it surprising he’s never heard it before when it popped into his head. Without further ado, LaFevre gives you – “noggin-knocker”.

You gotta admit, rolls right off the tongue. Thought of as a general term, but upon further reflection, could be used as a noun, or nickname, for football players. Ouch. Personal foul. Unnecessary roughness. 15 yards. First down.

#126 - Wait on me

Waiters and waitresses. You gotta love them. To quote Dudley Moore in Authur, “you ask them for things, and they bring them”. What LaFevre wants to know is, and you can classify this as either a trick question, or a zen riddle (one and the same, really), aside from certain districts in SF and NY, among others, why are there no waiters in bars? After all, there are just as many women drinking now as there are men. So you can rule out the flirting aspect leading to more purchases. Maybe at one time…Of course, LaFevre just wants to know, for knowing’s sake. Not for it to change. Hey waitress…

I Feel The Need...For Speed, 1997 - an excerpt from "My Chequered Life" (LaFevre's autobiography)

Not sure exactly when this occurred. All I know is, it did. And never forget it, I will. I know it was after I moved back to the city. I didn’t have a car, or a driver’s license. I couldn’t renew my license because of that ticket for expired registration.

I was partying with friends in the City. I had to do the running. It was my contact. Daly City. Just off the coastal highway. South of the SF border. No problem. It was all highway. Made the pickup. On the way back, it was all downhill, and I was flying. Right through a major intersection. Saw a police cruiser in my peripheral. Just sitting there. By the time I saw him in my rearview mirror, I was already 2 miles ahead, on SF’s Great Highway. A stretch of highway 2 miles long, with no turnoffs. But he was a mile back. I can’t figure out why he was so far back, considering he had two miles to catch up. Or radio for assistance. But nobody else showed. By then, it was on. I would have to disappear.

Thought for a second about hanging a u-turn at the lights situated every ½ mile. Even though it was a raised highway, there were crosswalks to get to the road running parallel downside. Pedestrian only. Did I mention I was in someone else’ car? I could not be caught. I would end up arrested, the car impounded. Snap decision. I dropped the hammer. Pedal to the metal. Lights off. I had 2 miles and 10 seconds to decide what I was going to do when I reached the end.

I was also working against the radio. I had to be at the end of the strip before backup showed up, who were possibly already dialed in. If they beat me, I would have had to stop short and bail. On foot, they wouldn’t have had a chance. No matter. I reached the end. Hell, this was my backyard. No one in sight. Rather than continue on in high speed fashion, and in a panic, which usually results in wrong decisions, I slowed to a normal pace. I had about a minute before my pursuer would catch up. And 60 seconds is a long time.

I hung a right on Lincoln Boulevard. The first right off the strip. One of two streets running up and down the length of SF’s largest park (perpendicular, btw), Golden Gate Park. In most cases, others would continue on, eventually getting nailed, or turning into the park and ending up trapped, with all exits likely being covered. I don’t think so.

After two blocks, I hung another right onto a neighborhood street. After all, this was my turf. Parked immediately and got out of the car. This is key in a getaway. Never stay in the car. They knew the car, and I couldn't be anywhere near it. Halfway down the block, I turned around to sirens, and watched the patrol car pass my street, flying up Lincoln Boulevard.

After 10 minutes of walking around the block, to make sure they didn't backtrack, I got back into the car, and used the side roads through the neighborhood to get back to ‘HQ’, using the shortest park crossover. Escape through the trees was the backup plan should I encounter any law enforcement along the way. Remember: I wasn’t even afforded the luxury of a pullover. Remember, no license.

Final destination: my buddy’s house. Two blocks on the other side of the park. Man, that was close. Didn’t tell him until years later. Had to be.

Friday, January 23, 2009

#125 - Class Dismissed

The ways of LaFevre/Tiger Claw affect everyone. For some, they are learned, the easy way. Always beneficial. For others, you get schooled, the hard way. Hurts at first, but doesn’t last. Like Mom used to say: “Don’t test me”. Food for thought, hungry or not.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

#124 - Bullshit

One of LaFevre’s love/hate dilemmas; with the outcome on the ‘love’ side. Rodeos. Cowboy central. Macho headquarters. Ego-dudes competing to overcome wild broncos and bulls. (Grrr) But LaFevre sees the big picture.

In rodeos, the animal eventually wins in the end. While some walk away, the rest of the riders eat dirt. Or worse, end up trounced or gored. Never a pretty sight. Cheers to the animal.

Of course, the exception to the rule is Spain, where bullfights still exist. A slow painful death for the animal. LaFevre cries for the cause. Then again, LaFevre likes to think the “running of the bulls” prior to the ‘prizefight’ is a pre-payback for what’s to come. Seeing the mauling and goring in the streets kinda makes up for the one sacrificed later in the arena. Yeahhh.

“You mess with the bull, you get the horns.”

#123 - Flat Tire

Last night, when LaFevre got home, he was so tired, he stretched out on the couch to take a nap. By the time he woke up, it was time for bed. Dream a little dream…

#122 - You're Trippin'

Two new additions to the LaFevre Dictionary of Contemporary Terms. Actually, they’re connected. One is a term referring to a ‘medical’ condition; the other, slang for someone with this ‘medical’ condition.

Ever notice how some people drag their feet? Not in a work/life sense, referring to handling responsibilities, figuratively-speaking. I’m talking literally. Walking down the street. Not stumbling, when you hit a raised sidewalk, without tumbling, which is worse. Tumbling is synonymous with tripping, which is never pretty.

No, I’m talking lazy-walking. Dragging your feet! We’ve all done it. Some do it all the time. LaFevre has a name for this condition that occurs on a regular basis: “slackfoot”. No explanation is needed here. As for someone who suffers from ‘slackfoot’? LaFevre refers to you as a “stumbleweed”.

Have a nice trip? See you next fall!

#121 - Tickets 'R' Us

Gone are the days of walking into a Ticketmaster and buying a ticket. Wait. You can still do that. But your seat is a nosebleeder. LaFevre saw the writing on the wall when Springsteen came to town back in the late 80’s. The night before, we had to wait in line at ticket agencies, to be issued a bracelet with a number on it that determined your place in line the next day when tickets went on sale. WTF?!

But now, the Net rulz. As do ticket brokers. For all its advantages, the disadvantages exist alongside. Not only can we purchase immediately, online, ticket brokers buy in bulk, and resell at a markup. Legalized scalping. And for promotional purposes, blocks of tickets are set aside. Giveaways on-air, comps for friends and relatives, etc. This happens across the board – concerts, sports, etc.

For example – Super Bowl. The biggest event overall. Aside from season ticket holders, how the hell do you sell out a 60,000-seat stadium in 6 minutes? SIX MINUTES! F’n ticket brokers. LaFevre has a purchase policy. For everything. Never pay full price. After all, you can brag till the sun goes down. “I got Super Bowl tickets. On the 50-yard line.” Good for you.

Now you have to pay for the flight and hotel, and miss half the game due to restroom runs, food & beverage runs, seat neighbor distractions, and most of all, miss out on the televised commentary and the replays after every other play. But hey. It’s the Super Bowl. LaFevre toasts his 40 to your good fortune, while sitting at home nice and warm, sippin’ on a 40, with the can 20 feet away. Hope you took pictures. I got it on videotape.

Friday, January 16, 2009

LaFevre Retorts...

If you think there is good in everybody, you haven't met everybody.

#120 - Driver's Ed

Driving is a privilege, not a right. If LaFevre were a driving instructor, a quarter of the people on the road would not have licenses. And deservedly so.

#119 - Speak No Evil

Not authorized to speak to the media, so you do it on condition of anonymity? Whistleblower. Rat. But that isn’t always the case, is it?

Maybe you’re releasing information to shed light on a situation where no official position has been made. People want answers. And they hate to wait. LaFevre calls it a strategic leak. After all, does anyone ever get fired for it, when it’s obvious everyone knows who did it? Such as when an aide to a government director does it, and it is mentioned that they are on a specific team. Uh, doesn’t that tell you who it is, just short of giving their name? You can blame the media for that. Loose lips sinks ships, baby.

#118 - Tape Delay

“Borrow today for an extended stay, and you’ll regret the day you finally pay.”
- LaFevre
I know. Sounds like a financial transaction here; although, that holds true in those cases. But this is about borrowing needful things. Does anyone ever return things on time anymore?

If you borrow something, and the lender doesn’t give you a time frame, you can bet it is still expected back within a short period, depending on the item’s use. It does NOT mean you can hold onto it until you’re ready to use it, or after done using it.
A rented tool for a job is borrowed with an understanding it is needed immediately. The return should be made upon completion of the job. A borrowed video takes time, considering the need to set aside at least two hours for viewing. That isn’t always easy on weeknights, but weekends are. A 2-hour movie shouldn’t take more than a week.

“If you can’t make the time, borrowing is the crime.”
(ode to Baretta)

Friday, January 2, 2009

#117 - A Nod To The Nod

Nod that the nod is more important than speaking, but equally important, nod-the-less. (LOL) The “nod”. The universal sign of respect. Whether it’s a raised nod, or a lowered nod. Everyone has their preferred nod. Thee way of saying, I may not like you, but I respect you. Or even as a sign of respect between strangers.

Which brings me to a new phrase for the LaFevre Dictionary of Contemporary Terms. “Nodding Terms.” We all know the phrase, “speaking terms”. When you and another stop speaking, and then resolve the situation, resulting in one another, at least speaking again (friendship is out of the question, obviously). But before you speak again, there is the “nod”.

I realized this when a former friend came over with others, left for the store, and didn’t return. Instead of calling with an excuse, he asked a friend to relay the message. Total disrespect. For several months, he would avoid eye contact, and pretend to not see me. No acknowledgement. After awhile, especially when it was passed on that it was his disrespect and subsequent screw-up that precipitated the whole scenario, it was the “nod” that broke the ice. Even if we never speak again, at least we’re on “nodding terms”.

“If you have nothing to say,
or can’t think of anything to say,
the “nod” will save the day.”

- LaFevre