Thursday, June 16, 2011

FTT Off-Topic: Roast Me

So part of the reason why the blog hasn't been updated so much recently, beyond my steadfast and well-considered opinion to ignore the NHL (I'm sorry, but anything that gives Boston Fan joy should not be viewed, much less tolerated, in a just society) is that I'm starting a new gig. And I'm consequently swamped by all of the things that you've got to do when such things are done, including but not limited to swapping out computers and cell phones, making sure your people are taken care of, clearing out all old business, etc., etc. It's been a lot, and I'm very happy there is a lot, because I like being busy... but between all of that and the fact that sports right now is down to MLB and just the MLB, it's really the worst time of the year to be a sports blogger. Some people dread the February post-Super Bowl time as Sports Dead Zone, but for me, it's the 2+ months between the end of the NBA season the start of the NFL, especially in years where my A's are unwatchable. In other words, every year between June and September, really.

But back to the ending of the job. For the past four years, I've been immersed in a situation where I've managed a team that worked on hundreds of pieces per month, under deadline pressures, for dozens of clients, both inside and outside of the company. It's been a fun ride; the second longest gig of my career (I've been at a lot of start-ups that haven't worked out), but it's time to move on... and I felt it was only right, especially as I move into a work from home situation at the new job, to give everyone who wants one a chance to speak their mind on the way out.

So I told my people, if they are so moved, to throw me a roast.

Now, I have no real expectation that this is actually going to happen. My people are designers and advertising personnel; they are funny, of course, but they aren't professional comedians. They also have to come to work with each other next week, and the week after that, and not have any hurt feelings about the experience. They also, I suspect, aren't completely convinced that I'm going to take any real ribbing the right way, which just seems sad, really. I'm a 42-year-old man who dresses on the cheap, with a couple of kids, living under house arrest due to falling property values, and I'm about as tall as your average hobbit. You learn to laugh at yourself or you don't get along, really. Hopefully, they'll do what they can, alcohol will be involved, and I'll go out with something memorable.

But my manager, a sweet guy who did his best for me the past few years, said something peculiar to me about this. Namely, why would I want something like this to happen? And it reminded me of taking my kids and mom out to dinner the other night.

There's an Asian buffet place within walking distance of my place, in a little strip mall that's handy for a lot of things. And it's mediocre stuff, like most buffets, but when you have little kids and you want them to eat, a buffet works like gangbusters, because there's no waiting and the desserts are just right there, ready for the earning. So we chowed down well enough, and in the back of the place, far away from the popular entrees and the traditional fare, was some stuff that showed you that the place actually had some authentically Asian people in there to eat from time to time.

Namely, chicken feet and pig feet.

Now, a quick word. My diet is pretty bland most days. I try to stay healthy and avoid fast food, watch my caloric intake and do what I can to balance things out. But if you give me the opportunity to eat something unique, I'm taking it, mostly to say I've tried it. Gator, goat, buffalo, ostrich, a ton of fish, bull balls... it's all been on my plate, and most of it hasn't gotten a second chance. But hey, you are dead a long time. Try some stuff.

So as soon as I saw the feet, I knew I was going to be eating a few. Mostly to freak out my kids, and partly because when you write, you are always looking for some stories to throw into the mix... but mostly because, hey, when am I going to have the chance to eat feet again?

They are, by the way, disgusting. Wrong texture, bad aftertaste, nothing to recommend them. But it's not as if they hurt me more longer then it took to wash the taste off my tongue. No big deal, really.

So a roast seems like it'd be fun to me; more fun than just sitting around a bar hearing how I'll be missed.

And if it's not?

At least I can say I've done it.

So have at it, you soon to be exes of mine...

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